FreemanMeansBusiness.com We help women in business communicate effectively with the world -- and men communicate effectively with women in business!
"Freeman Means Business” podcasts serve to raise awareness about the great things incredible people in business are doing to serve others. We write about the podcasts on the blog on the website and then with social media.
Breen Sullivan is the Founder of The Fourth Floor, an innovative ecosystem reimagining the board room, investment, and how we support female entrepreneurship. Women have a hard time getting board seats and they also have a hard time raising money to scale their companies. To solve for this, the Fourth Floor brings female founders and professionals together to increase the number of women on boards, be more competitive fundraisers, and create wealth for entrepreneurs and investors.
Breen is a C-Suite executive with concentrated experience in operations, commercial contracting, human resources and employment matters; organization, corporate and deal strategy; Board of Director communications and responsibilities; privacy and risk management; financial matters, and occasionally novel challenges. As a career general counsel, Breen has worked with startup and high-growth companies for nearly a decade, specializing in technology, SaaS, energy efficiency, and data science.
Breen and The Fourth Floor have been featured by Forbes, Corporate Counsel Magazine, Law.com, The American Lawyer, Above The Law, Women On The Record Podcast, and Her CEO Journey: The Business Finance Podcast for Women Entrepreneurs. She holds a JD from Tulane and a BA from Yale University. She has earned certificates and completed coursework at Boalt Hall, Berkeley, Universita Degli Studi di Firenzi, and Humboldt-Universität Zu.
Breen also personally invests in startups and enjoys serving as a Board Advisor to startup and growth companies.
Manisha Arora is director of a team that builds strategic alliances between technology partners and ServiceNow, reporting to the Chief Innovation Officer. She serves as alliance architect for the most strategic platform partners of ServiceNow - driving product planning, engineering, and go-to-market efforts. She is an industry speaker, platform evangelist, and trusted advisor to Fortune 500 executive partners and customers.
Prior to ServiceNow, Manisha spent a decade at Microsoft in a career spanning Azure, Windows Server, and driving enterprise platform initiatives. In these roles, she built and led Technology Adoption Programs for customers to shape Microsoft product roadmaps, delivered showcases, and drove efforts to incubate and pilot new products. She also led global Service Management technical strategy and process definition at Microsoft in partnership with ServiceNow - resulting in lower costs, greater efficiency, and new business capabilities.
Manisha served as President of the Board of Directors at IGNITE Worldwide – an award-winning global non-profit that creates STEM education opportunities for underserved communities, and she remains involved as a Board Advisor. She is a classically-trained violinist that had the opportunity to play in a Carnegie Hall orchestra concert at a young age. www.igniteworldwide.org
Emily Woloschuk is an award-winning marketing and business development professional who helps lawyers build their book of business and deliver outstanding client service.
Driven by the belief that effective communication is key to one’s success, Emily takes pride in providing strategic guidance on business development efforts, marketing and public relations, client feedback programs, and digital marketing.
Most recently Emily was the Director of Marketing & Business Development at a litigation boutique. She worked with the lawyers on business development initiatives that supported the firm’s strategic plan. For her work in helping the firm achieve national recognition as a top-tier trial firm, Emily received a Your Honor Award from the Legal Marketing Association Southeast region (LMASE).
Emily is the 2021 President-Elect of the LMASE Board of Directors.
Her passion for communications can be traced back to the 12th grade, where Emily spent significant time working on a speech honoring the Civil Rights leader Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth at the 1992 opening ceremony of the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute.
Outside of the office, Emily enjoys cooking, gardening, travel, and yoga.
Jory Des Jardins is CMO of the @ Company, builder of an internet protocol designed to put control over online data and user experiences back into the hands of People. She is passionate about making capital funding and business building resources available to talented, underrepresented founders. She is VC in Residence at the W Fund. Jory pioneered social marketing as Co-Founder and President of BlogHer, a media marketplace representing thousands of digital influencers, which reached 100 million monthly unique viewers at the time of its acquisition. Jory has advised dozens of scaling startups, focusing on companies that are evolving digital influence, social content, media models, consumer marketplaces, eCommerce, Blockchain/token-based economies, and AR/VR/MR. Among the companies she has formally advised are PracticalXR, Lifescape, AIKON, and the entrepreneur network SheWorx.
Kenya Dunn, Founder & CEO of the Power-Filled Woman is a coach, speaker, teacher, community advocate, entrepreneur, and an experienced corporate executive. The Power-Filled Woman’s mission is to impact the lives and businesses of 1 million women across the globe. Kenya is fulfilling her mission through her annual conference, Power-Filled. She also launched the Power Tribe earlier in 2020, a community created with women of color in mind.
Professionally, Kenya has a coaching and consulting firm, PFW, LLC. She helps business leaders improve their bottom line through diversity, equity and inclusion strategic planning, leadership development and cultural transformation.
Prior to starting her own company, Kenya spent 20 years in corporate America. She held executive leadership positions in both Customer Service & Retail organizations, building high performing teams producing phenomenal results. She also helped countless people grow their own careers and launch businesses. She matriculated from the University of Phoenix with a B.S. in Management.
In her spare time, Kenya enjoys reading books, traveling, meeting new people, and spending time with her family and close friends.
Kenya is a Ted Ex Charleston speaker coach. She was also the YWCA’s 2020 What Women Bring honoree for Women in Business.
Rosalia Labate practices in financial forensics, largely in divorce matters, navigating the financial issues involved from gathering documents to preparing a Statement of Net Worth to business valuation services to forensic accounting to understanding both the short-term and long-term implications of the financial decisions. She also specializes in litigation support as a part of the "divorce team", working hand in hand with the attorney. Qualified as a financial expert throughout New York.
Rosalia began her career at Deloitte & Touche in Manhattan, one of the most prestigious accounting firms worldwide, for the Internal Audit Division and then went to Salomon Smith Barney. Her experience and financial expertise brought her to the Manhattan firm of Alexandra & James, where she focused exclusively on divorce and mediation.
When people are going through martial or business divorces, they need someone who will educate and empower them with the right information so you can make smart decisions. Rosalia is that person. As someone who has experienced the divorce process first-hand (and with hundreds of clients), she has learned how to make the process more efficient so people can move on to their next chapter -- sooner.
Rosalia provides consulting, forensic, business valuation, mediation, and testifying expert services in the financial aspects of marital and business divorces. With a strong attention to detail, she unravels the most complicated financial situations and excels at explaining in plain English, the economics of the situation, as well as the options available for settlement. Anything from investigations to guidance through litigation, Rosalia makes it digestible. As part of the team from start to finish, Rosalia ensures people have the right information to make smart decisions for themselves and their families including financial investigations with the client prior to their hiring their attorney to guidance through litigation.
Steph Palermo, raised in a Sicilian family, taps into her experiences both at home and in Sicily to bring you simple wisdom to transform your life and business. Sicilians are passionate about family, food, love and respect. Steph tackles Sicilian traditions like the family dinner table, forgiveness, loyalty and generosity. She offers tips on incorporating these values and others into your life to strengthen familial bonds, inspire lives and ultimately positively affect the bottom line in your business. As a short story teller, Steph draws you into her world and demonstrates how adopting a Sicilian way of thinking and being, you will begin to value all you have. You will enjoy healthy relationships, inner peace and an increase in productivity at home and work, not to mention an increase in appreciation of mealtime.
If you are of Italian or Sicilian descent, you will identify with Steph's stories as you stroll down memory lane. She will remind you of what you may have forgotten, or you will nod in agreement as a practicing Sicilian.
This book is for anyone who wants to truly embrace life and enjoy every moment. Whether you are interested in positively influencing your family, a single person who desires to offer and receive value in relationships or a business owner who cares about employees and increasing productivity. You will learn what it takes to reach your desired outcomes. Steph Palermo melds old school values with our current, modern day world.
Meade Hartfield has represented clients nationwide in a variety of industries, including financial services, drug and medical device, automotive, aviation, industrial equipment, insurance, and environmental. Her financial services practice includes representing financial institutions, auto-finance lenders and mortgage companies in defensive litigation matters throughout the country, including alleged violations of TCPA, TILA, FCRA, FDCPA and state deceptive trade practices laws. She also spearheads regulatory compliance services in response to pending or new legislation.
Meade has been admitted to practice before all state and federal courts in Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee. She is an active member of the Defense Research Institute (DRI), where she serves as Seminar Chair of the Women in the Law Committee, as well as the Women in the Law Liaison to the International Law Committee and the Automotive Section of the Product Liability Committee. Meade also is serving as the inaugural chair of Women in the Law Committee for the Alabama Defense Lawyers Association.
Counsel for national mortgage servicers in their multi-state residential mortgage litigation
Counsel for captive auto-finance lender in litigation involving consumer protection statutes and dealer finance
Counsel in successful defense of mortgage services provider in cases involving alleged RESPA, TCPA, FDCPA, TILA, FCRA, wrongful foreclosure and other state law violations
Counsel in successful representation and summary judgment monetary award in favor of financial services provider in invoice factoring case
Counsel in successful defense of major automotive manufacturers in product liability and warranty cases
Heidi Turner is a Communications Consultant | Public Speaker | Instructor | Writer | Advocate
Heidi Turner is the founder and owner of Corporate Writers, and is passionate about helping women magnify their messages.
Heidi has written for clients in numerous sectors, including legal, technology, healthcare and finance. She has helped law firms establish their authority and build their clientele, and assisted local immigration organizations in increasing awareness of their services. She helps her clients find their authentic voices to engage their audiences and build their brand.
Heidi has a bachelor's degree in general studies from Simon Fraser University and currently instructs students enrolled in SFU's editing program. She frequently gives presentations to organizations about freelance writing, networking, starting and running a business and other writing-related topics. She has presented or spoken on panels for the Professional Writers Association of Canada, Editors Canada, Editors BC, MagNet, University of Victoria, Simon Fraser University, University of the Fraser Valley, Magazines BC, and local arts and immigration organizations.
In 2013, Heidi was honoured with the Abbotsford Arts Council's Arty Award for Outstanding Artist in the Literary Arts. She spends her free time advising and mentoring fellow freelance writers on starting their business and networking. She previously founded a group for local business women to meet and discuss their career and business issues while supporting each other.
For four years, Heidi served on the national board of directors for the Professional Writers Association of Canada (PWAC, now the Freelance Media Guild) as the BC Regional Director.
She is passionate about advocating for women's rights, diversity, and inclusion, and is especially interested in changing policies and language that are unnecessarily complex and exclusionary.
Heidi is based near Vancouver, British Columbia.
Mandy McEwen is the Founder & CEO of Mod Girl Marketing, an award-winning digital marketing agency based in California. She was named a top 24 B2B marketer by LinkedIn, listed by Search Engine Journal as a top 12 SEO expert, and named a top 20 female marketer by G2. Leveraging LinkedIn and thought leadership marketing, Mandy and her team unlock growth opportunities for C-suite executives and brands who deserve them, resulting in more brand awareness, more authority, and more impact.
Karen Cornwell spent her career in Tech; she lived it, learned from it, and now wants to change the tide for future technology aficionados. Her lifelong quest is to improve innovation and drive top-line growth for technology companies. Karen believes to really do this we must learn to leverage our gender diversity. After years of honing her product management expertise (how to bring value to clients) she is now focusing on how people’s interactions can be improved (bringing value to both employees and companies). She founded two companies to deliver this work, ConsultCornwell and AttunoVation.
Karen delivers a wealth of experience in her stories both in her book and from the stage. She demonstrates an uncanny ability to combine aspects of neuroscience, psychology, sociology, and linguistics that leave you thinking, “that makes sense, now I get it.” She has a BS and MS in Engineering and an MBA from Santa Clara University. Karen lives in Silicon Valley with her Chef husband and their three boys.
Jasmine O'Brien prides herself on the strength of her client relationships. She believes that lawyers need to be customer-centric problem solvers who partner with business to achieve their commercial objectives. She’s not afraid to do things differently and is at her happiest when she is getting results for her clients. She understands that every business was once somebody’s dream and brings that awareness to her work.
Jasmine practises across all areas of employment law, industrial relations, and discrimination, harassment and bullying.
Jasmine's Principal Areas of Practice:
business restructuring, including overseeing large scale redundancies and employee issues arising from a transfer of business;
preparing employment contracts and policies;
disciplinary issues and performance management, including dealing with difficult employees;
enterprise agreement negotiation and drafting;
industrial action contingency planning;
litigation and dispute resolution;
workplace investigations, including responding to allegations of discrimination, harassment or bullying;
Nada Alnajafi is an award-winning attorney with deep experience serving as in-house counsel for startups and public companies over the past 12 years. She currently serves as Corporate Counsel for Franklin Templeton, a Fortune-500 global financial services organization. Previously, she worked in-house for Faraday Future, Lexus, and Concannon Business Consulting where she gained experienced in the automotive and tech industries. Nada is passionate about leveraging the latest in legal tech to gain efficiencies in the contracts management process. With her dynamic legal and consulting background, she is more than just an attorney; she is a trusted advisor, business partner, project manager, creative problem-solver, and skilled negotiator. In addition, Nada enjoys training contract negotiators on the ins and outs of contracts negotiations and redlining etiquette. During the pandemic, Nada wanted to find a way to connect with other contract professionals and, as a result, she created Contract Nerds – the new home for everything contracts.
Farissa Knox is the Founder and CEO of RLM Media, a holding company and advertising agency dedicated to expanding how advertisers look at and talk to todays “actual” consumer; the Founder and Creative Director of WhatRUWearing Productions, the production house behind the reality series, PRGirl showing the professional and personal lives of ladies running the worlds of fashion, beauty and lifestyle Public Relations; the Author of Love, Sex and Friendship: In No Particular Order, her memoir describing her journey around career, love, self discovery and dating during her mid 20’s in New York City; and a wife and a mother.
Malur Narayan is a proven technology business leader having distinguished himself through his broad business experience in software, telecom, networking and IT products and services.
Malur is also actively involved with several startups as an advisor, investor, and a mentor – specifically as co-founder of BoardSeatMeet, an online platform for diversity in Boards, and with Webware.io, a toolkit to help businesses go online.
He has over 28 years of industry experience having worked in all five continents. He has held a broad range of senior management roles at Nortel and Tata ranging from sales, business development, product management & marketing, and product development/engineering.
Malur was in a senior leadership role, reporting to the CEO of TCS, to bring TCS's technology solutions to benefit the Tata group companies — specifically digital transformation — including a Big Data Customer insight program.
Malur pioneered self-managed teams in software development in the early 90s. His research in Reverse Engineering, Inverse resolution and Induction led to the introduction of Adaptive learning algorithms in Machine Learning in 1991.
Malur holds an undergraduate degree in Computer Engineering, a Master’s degree in Computer Science from University of Western Ontario, Canada and a MBA from the University of Ottawa, Canada. He began his career as a software engineer at Nortel.
He has been a speaker at several International business forums including EMBA programs at Cornell University, Imperial College of London, IIM-Ahmedabad and Queens University in Canada. He is known for his positive attitude, people skills, great sense of humor, and is immensely passionate about trail hiking/running, creating music, gardening and writing. He is actively involved in charitable activities for mental health care and awareness.
His story on building relationships and personal brand has recently been featured in a book titled “Get your Next Promotion”, by Manbir Kaur
Malur is based in Austin, Texas.
Ceah Justice is a DEI champion committed to challenging, changing, and shaping the mindset of others to create a culture of intentional Inclusionist. An authentic people leader who thrives in new, challenging, fast-paced environments full of opportunities to sway large numbers of people. An inspirational leader with a natural talent for Motivating and Stimulating teams to “raise the bar” in order to exceed company initiatives. A Strategic executive leader who drives business to the next level by creating Self-Sufficient People-Centric cultures built around Empowerment, Development, and Accountability to Influence change. Challenging others to tap into their truest potential is her Superpower! Inspiring change is her passion! Curiosity and a thirst for learning is her fuel. Fighting for equity and equality is in her DNA!
Janice Lintz is a passionate and accomplished consultant/advocate across the hearing advocacy and related political spectrum. She is well known and respected for her ability to effect change and develop and implement creative solutions across organizational and geographic boundaries. Janice has become the “go-to” person on matters relating to access for people who are deaf or hard of hearing on a global basis.
She is the CEO of Hearing Access & Innovations (HAI) f/k/a Hearing Access Program, “HAP." HAI is the leading business in the world dedicated to helping the world’s corporations, cultural and entertainment institutions, government agencies, and mass transit organizations improve their accessibility for the over 480 million people worldwide with hearing loss. HAI has established or enhanced hearing access programs at over 100 international organizations, including:
The American Museum of Natural History, Apple, Association of National Advertisers, Cunard, Delta, Disney, Graceland, Heinz History Center, Lincoln Center, Marriott, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Fine Arts, NBC Universal, NFL, NYC Taxi & Limousine Commission, NYC Transit, The New York Times, Yankee Stadium, and The Wall Street Journal.
Janice is also a Consumer Education/Travel writer. Her articles appeared in Forbes, Forbes Africa, Yahoo Travel, Medium, Thrive Global, Huffington Post, and The Outdoor Journal. Condé Nast Traveler, Departures, Travel + Leisure, Consumer Reports, Bustle, Southern Living, Reader's Digest, Good Housekeeping, NPR, Fox Business, and msn.com are among the many media outlets quoting Janice. She visited 139+2/193+2 UN countries and 194/329 TCC destinations.
Sonia Zeledon is the Director, Associate General Counsel, Ethics, Head of Compliance and Data Privacy, for The Hershey Company. Previously, she held various positions at Nokia Corporations and worked at several Amlaw 10 law firms.
Ms. Zeledon serves on The Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA) Executive Committee as General Counsel. She is a frequent speaker on compliance and privacy, including the biases in technologies such as AI . She earned a B.A. in Economics and Math from Wellesley College; she also holds a J.D. from the University of Miami School of Law.
Charisse Curiel, EMBA is a mom of two boys, a wife, and a marketing professional with nearly 20 years’ experience spanning several industries.
Currently, Charisse is the Digital Marketing Manager for Leopard Solutions, a woman owned law firm intelligence and attorney data company serving the legal industry. Leopard Solutions’ is the largest and most accurate law firm data platform with actionable intelligence and insights on over 4,200 law firms worldwide and 7,000 US corporate legal departments. One of the company’s latest product release is the Leopard Law Firm Index and the inclusion of a diversity tool incorporated into two legacy products, The Leopard List and Firmscape, also coming soon to Leopard In House. The Leopard diversity tool helps legal recruiters fill their talent pipeline with more women and attorneys of color; it also allows for corporate counsel and law firm management to keep an informed eye on diversity. Charisse joined Leopard Solutions in March 2018, managing all digital assets and creating almost all of the content for the company.
Rachel Barner is a global Business Executive, Corporate Counsel and experienced Board Member who brings the powerful combination of international perspective, legal expertise, strategic vision and financial acumen. A trusted advisor to and partner of top management and boards of directors, Rachel is valued for advice and guidance in enterprise risk, corporate solutions and global ethics.
Melissa Jones is a trial lawyer who provides experienced and practical counsel in complex business disputes, appellate matters and internal investigations. She has represented clients from a broad range of industries in complex civil litigation matters in both state and federal court, including the agribusiness, and oil and gas industries. Her practice includes an emphasis on Proposition 65 defense as well. Additionally, Melissa has held various leadership roles at the firm. She is the Firm Managing Partner and serves on the firm’s Executive Committee. Melissa is a former office managing partner for the firm’s three California offices and also recently served as the chair of the Partner Compensation Committee.
Ilanit Meckley is the founder of Notable Projects, a project management consultancy focused on directing process improvement projects in the healthcare industry. Ilanit has 13+ years of experience working for hospitals and academic medical centers in improving operational processes and outcomes and is passionate about aligning stakeholders across an organization along shared goals with the ultimate goal of improving patient lives. She has experience managing diverse teams and implementing changes, and uses systems and data to inform decisions and drive communications that will lead to sustainable improvement.
Lisa K. Lang currently serves as the General Counsel for Kentucky State University, a role she has had for three years. Lisa first began her career as a lawyer working as an associate attorney specializing in insurance defense for a law firm in Louisville, Kentucky. She left that firm in 2008 to work for the Commonwealth of Kentucky. She first worked in the Office of the Attorney General as an Assistant Attorney General and then for the Kentucky Department of Education in a variety of in-house counsel roles until taking her current position at Kentucky State.
Patrice Tanaka is a best-selling author, public speaker on business and life purpose, serial entrepreneur and co-founder of three award-winning, PR & Marketing agencies and the consultancy, Joyful Planet, focused on helping individuals and organizations discover and actively live their purpose to unleash greater success, fulfillment and joy in their personal lives, workplaces and communities. Life and organizational purpose are the subjects of Patrice’s best-selling books, Beat the Curve and Performance360. Patrice has been honored by PRWeek (Hall of Fame inductee), PRSA Foundation (Paladin Award), PRSA (Paul M. Lund Award for Public Service), New York Women in Communications (Matrix Award), Working Mother magazine (“Mothering that Works” Award), Girl Scouts of Greater New York (“Women of Distinction” Award), University of Hawaii (“Distinguished Alumni Award), among others. Patrice has lived in New York City for most of her adult life, but calls Hawaii “home” and she is committed to living her life with the “Aloha Spirit.”
Joy Lyu Monahan is an experienced and resourceful problem solver, business advisor, lawyer, coalition builder and relationship manager. Skilled leader with expertise in fundraising, networking, project design and management, and business development for public, private and non-profit sectors. Demonstrated success in leveraging cross-industry and functional relationships into mutually beneficial programming with amplified impact for all parties regardless of budget. Accomplished in managing groups of varying sizes and building teams to create and deliver effective solutions for stakeholders and clients. Over a decade of experience counseling national and international clients in litigation, corporate restructuring and insolvency matters, private equity and global and cross-border corporate transactions across various industries. Served in various roles for all three branches of the Federal Government.
I’m Dr. Alauna Curry and I want you to know, YOU ARE NOT ALONE. In fact, you are far from alone; we are all connected in trauma. Through this site, I hope to offer you an effective path to emotional, psychological and spiritual healing. As a Board-Certified Psychiatrist, specializing in the diagnosis and treatment of complex psychological trauma and related mental health conditions, I have diagnosed and provided intensive trauma treatment for US Military veterans for the last 12 years.
After years of studying and teaching the most evidence-based trauma treatment interventions currently available, I began to recognize that psychological trauma was present at the core of any mental illness. Whether you realize it or not, you and someone you know is experiencing the debilitating and life altering impact of individual and collective trauma. Once I understood the predictable patterns of thoughts and behavior, and the impact of traumatic experiences on a few specific brain systems, it become clear that these numbers significantly underestimate the prevalence of trauma. Trauma has a 100% prevalence rate.
Well that’s pretty depressing, right? Well, yes and no! Because this is an opportunity to get rid of the stigma of trauma once and for all! What is the point of feeling shame for experiencing something that every person is experiencing, and feeling alone in, simply because we are too ashamed to share our stories and reshape them in a healthy way! This is where empathy, specifically having the mental skills to look at any situation from the differing yet equal perspective of another Creator, combined with a deeper knowledge of