Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Meet Symposium Panelist: Wendy Staso

 Over the next few weeks we'll be introducing you to the business women who will share "Solutions that Work" during the E-Magnify Symposium panel discussion. Full details and registration for "Building Strategies for Sustainable Growth" on March 9 are available here

Today we're pleased to introduce to you panelist Wendy Staso, Owner, President, and CEO, Huckestein Mechanical Services, Inc.

Wendy Staso is owner, president, and Chief Executive Officer of Huckestein Mechanical Services, Inc. She has 25 years of experience in a broad range of fields covering such disciplines as mechanical contracting, energy, transportation, construction, corporate real estate, and environmental management. Currently she is responsible for all operations within the firm’s four operational pillars: Projects, Service, Controls, and Energy Management. Since being appointed as CEO, she has set a new strategy and vision to establish the company as the “contractor of choice” in its key markets and reorganized to capitalize on state-of-the-industry talent and technology and to make the company more cost-competitive. Prior to joining Huckestein, Wendy was a managing partner of TNG Enterprises, LLC, a holding company for several small businesses. She began her career with Westinghouse Electric Corporation as a marketing specialist and manager in the nuclear, advanced energy, and transportation business units. Wendy received her degree from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. As part of her ongoing commitment to the local community, she serves on the Serra Catholic High School Board of Directors and is a Member of the Sisters of Charity Development Advisory Board. She is also a member of the Mechanical Contractors Association of America, Seton Hill University Women President’s Organization, and the Chatham University Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Meet Symposium Panelist: Sheila Ecung

Over the next few weeks we'll be introducing you to the business women who will share "Solutions that Work" during the E-Magnify Symposium panel discussion. Full details and registration for "Building Strategies for Sustainable Growth" on March 9 are available here

Today we're pleased to introduce to you panelist Sheila Ecung, Founder and Owner, ArrowStarr Communications

Sheila Ecung founded ArrowStarr Communications on the principle of delivering effective marketing communications to help clients market, sell, train, inform, and inspire others to act. She trained in business communication, with a specialty in mediation, at the Center for Advanced Management Programs at the University of Houston at Clear Lake. She has honed her business skills during more than twenty years in education and business. While negotiating television contracts and National Football League Film usage rights, she recognized an opportunity and launched ArrowStarr. In marketing, Sheila has executed national campaigns, created strategic plans, and developed collateral materials. Her media team has produced live events, television programs, entertainment, and education and interactive web productions. Sheila is past president of the Pittsburgh Chapter of Media Communications Association―International (MCA-I) and is a member of Toastmasters International. Her team has been recognized with more than 100 awards for quality and excellence, and she has been featured in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, the Pittsburgh Courier, the Houston Chronicle, and the National Radon Reporter. Sheila’s work has been featured on ABC, ESPN, NBC, FOX, TSN of Canada, Premiere World of Germany, and at national conventions. Sheila made history in the tristate region by having the first independently produced weekly television series and by being the first woman to own a weekly sports prognostication show. Through her work with the radon industry Sheila has worked to shape political policy and held interviews with U.S. Presidents.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Five Ideas from Mary Cantando

Five Ideas I’m Pretty Sure You’ve Never Thought Of

My name is Mary Cantando and I’m the keynote speaker for your upcoming E-Magnify Women's Entrepreneurial Symposium. I've been working exclusively with women like you for over ten years now, and am told that the ideas I present in my books, magazine articles, and keynotes have transformed their businesses and their lives. I’m excited about sharing some of my newest ideas with you at the symposium on Friday, March 9.

But I just couldn’t wait until March 9 to get started, so here are a few ideas that I wasn’t able to squeeze into my keynote.
  1. Understand how the “Silver Tsunami” might be a business opportunity for you. There is a growing market of older folks who need and are able to pay for high-quality services, such as concierge and upscale transportation. How might you take advantage of this fast-growing market?
  2. Think of yourself as an athlete. It will make a difference in the way you walk, talk, eat, and conduct your life in general.
  3. Make a list of 100 things that you like: people, products, software, TV shows, movies, books, animals…the sky is the limit. Do it right now. With all the negativity in the world, I hope you’ll join me in creating a counterculture that focuses on the great stuff.
  4. Answer these three questions for any boards or committees on which you participate:
    a.    Why are you there?
    b.    How can you best use your role in this organization to grow your business and your life?
    c.    What can you do for this organization that no one else can?
  5. Go to lunch individually with every tenant in your building over the course of the year. Let them choose the restaurant and tell them you’re not going to discuss business but you want to learn all you can about them, their background, their interests, organizations they may belong to. You will find these connections and this information about them invaluable in both your business and your personal life.
Hope to see you on March 9 when I’ll share my top ideas for Making 2012 the Best Year of Your Life!

Get the full details and registration for "Building Strategies for Sustainable Growth," a Women's Entrepreneurial Symposium. Join Mary and other women in business for this exciting event on March 9 in Greensburg, PA!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Meet Symposium Panelist: Danielle D’Alesandro

Over the next few weeks we'll be introducing you to the business women who will share "Solutions that Work" during the E-Magnify Symposium panel discussion. Full details and registration for "Building Strategies for Sustainable Growth" on March 9 are available here

Today we're pleased to introduce to you panelist Danielle D’Alesandro, Owner, My Posh Baby & Kids.

Danielle D'Alesandro owns My Posh Baby & Kids, a specialty toy and children's gifts store. In addition to selling through her retail storefront of four years in Irwin, PA, Danielle has been selling online for 12 years through her own website and various other online channels. More than 70% of her sales are done online, and she has achieved top seller ratings from many online communities. Danielle gives presentations on topics such as inventory control and how to increase your online sales. She also does consulting work to help businesses of all sizes increase their online sales, enhance their marketing and social media efforts, and expand into new markets. With her small business consulting services, she provides authentic alternatives to business owners and executives so they can stop spinning their wheels and move forward with substantial, profitable business growth, personal satisfaction, and bottom line control. Danielle received her undergraduate degree from St. Vincent College and an MBA from Chatham University.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

BusinessUSA: New federal website

The federal government has launched,  a one-stop shop where you can find information about available federal programs without having to waste time and resources navigating the federal bureaucracy. It is a platform for you to access services you may need to grow your firm and succeed: technical assistance to start a business, access to financing, assistance in exporting, and more.

BusinessUSA combines information and services from 10 different government agencies through one consolidated website and coordinated telephone support through a single 1-800 number. The BusinessUSA website already presents hundreds of business resources, in one place. And more is on the way. Check it out here.

Nat'l Entrepreneurship Week: Free Webinars

February 21-24, 2012, daily at 3:00 p.m. (ET)

What: The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will host a series of free webinars in recognition of the sixth annual National Entrepreneurship Week.  The emphasis will be on financial empowerment and building the entrepreneurship skills of the next generation of small business owners, using business basics, social networking and business strategizing.

Tuesday, Feb. 21, 3:00 p.m.: Entrepreneurship Empowers Everyone
Presenter: Felipe Wright, CEO Intelligent Information Technology Solution

Wednesday, Feb. 22, 3:00 p.m.: The Things an Entrepreneur Needs to Know
Presenter: Joseph Clarke, Chapter Chair, Washington, D.C. SCORE

Thursday, Feb. 23, 3:00 p.m.: Building Your Team
Presenter: Melanie Lamar-Hancock, President, Right at Home, Washington, D.C.

Friday, Feb. 24, 3:00 p.m.: Entrepreneurship & Networking
Presenter: Jennifer Kushell, Founder and CEO,

For information on logging-in to the webinars, visit

National Entrepreneurship Week (February 18-25, 2012), hosted by the Consortium for Entrepreneurship Education, celebrates the heritage of entrepreneurship in America and of entrepreneurship education for the next generation.  For details on this and other events, visit the National Entrepreneurship Week website at

Meet Symposium Panelist: Sandy Burkett

Over the next few weeks we'll be introducing you to the business women who will share "Solutions that Work" during the E-Magnify Symposium panel discussion. Full details and registration for "Building Strategies for Sustainable Growth" on March 9 are available here

Today we're pleased to introduce to you panelist Sandy Burkett, President and Owner, Vital Signs.

Sandy Burkett is president and owner of Vital Signs, a certified Native American/Woman Owned custom sign and graphics company located in Carnegie, PA, where she collaborates with clients to help them brand their businesses. Formerly a Special Education Advocate helping children with learning disabilities and a Court Appointed Special Advocate for children, Sandy continues to support causes that empower girls and women, including the Girl Scouts, Girls Going Places, and CASA for Kids. Sandy also acts as an Ambassador for the Sjogren’s Syndrome Foundation. She has received  SignWorld Leadership Awards for 2006 and2007, the 2007 Minority Business Opportunity Committee Woman Business of the Year award, and the 2010 National Association of Women Business Owners' Make The Connection Award for her Pittsburgh’s Got Sole Shoe Collection for the victims of the Haiti Earthquake.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Marcellus Shale: Small Biz Impacts & Expectations

E-Magnify Director Jayne Huston will participate in this event, which is sponsored by the Fayette County Chamber of Commerce and Fay-Penn Economic Development Council Presented by the Small Business Administration.

  • Date: Friday, March 2, 2012 
  • Time: 8:00 am – 11:00 am 
  • Location: Penn State Corporate Training Center Penn State Fayette – The Eberly Campus (Rt. 119 North of Uniontown)

8:00 – 8:15 a.m. Registration
8:15 – 9:30 a.m. Panel Discussion including representatives and resources for your business. Panelists include:
  • Jayne H. Huston, Director, Seton Hill University E-Magnify 
  • Dana Kendrick, Economic Development Manager, Fay-Penn Economic Development Council
  • James Kunkel, Executive Director, St. Vincent’s Small Business Development Center 
  • Richard Wallace, Manager, Business Finance Assistance Program, Southwestern PA Commission 
  • David M. Pinkosky, ACAS Development Specialist, Southwestern PA Commission 
  • Chuck Burtyk, Director of Workforce Development, Private Industry Council, PTAC/GACO
  • Judith Woodson McNeil, Program Coordinator, Diversity Business Resource
  • Wayne Freed, First National Bank of Pennsylvania, SBA Lender 
  • Philip Yamalis, Sr. Stakeholder Liaison, IRS
9:30 – 10:30 a.m. Carl Knoblock — Marcellus Shale: Small Business Impacts & Expectations
Learn how your business or community can prepare to take advantage of this opportunity. SBA District Director, Carl Knoblock, will share his knowledge of the Marcellus topic as it related to business growth and development.

10:30 – 11:00 a.m. Open Discussion

Coffee, juice and breakfast pastries will be available. Space is limited. Please register by calling the Fayette Chamber Office at 724-437-4571 or sending an email to

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Meet Symposium Panel Facilitator: Betsy Benson

Over the next few weeks we'll be introducing you to the business women who will share "Solutions that Work" during the E-Magnify Symposium panel discussion. Full details and registration for "Building Strategies for Sustainable Growth" on March 9 are available here

This week we're pleased to introduce to you the panel facilitator, Betsy Benson, Publisher and Vice President, Pittsburgh Magazine

Betsy Benson is publisher and vice president of Pittsburgh Magazine, where she oversees operations at one of the region’s most vital media organizations. Pittsburgh Magazine has served the community for 42 years and today provides content through a monthly magazine, a website, and more than a dozen events held throughout the year. A graduate of the University of Pittsburgh, Betsy has worked in journalism and publishing for 25 years, including 15 years at the Pittsburgh Business Times where she served as editor. Betsy was honored as a Legacy Laureate at Pitt in 2000 and as a Woman of Achievement by Celebrate & Share in 2010. She has supported numerous causes, including WQED, Go Red for Women, YMCA, and Powerlink.

Join Betsy at the E-Magnify Women's Entrepreneurial Symposium, "Building Strategies that Work," on March 9, 2012 in downtown Greensburg. Learn more and register.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Register for the 2012 E-Magnify Symposium

Registration is now open for E-Magnify's 2012 women's entrepreneurial symposium, Building Strategies for Sustainable Growth. 

Date: March 9, 2012
Seton Hill University Performing Arts Center, Greensburg, PA

This year's Symposium will focus on growth strategies for small businesses and will include workshops and a keynote address on a variety of ways to increase your organization's revenue stream.
Mary Cantando, president of The Woman's Advantage, will deliver the Keynote Presentation: Make This Your Best Year Business! Make This Your Best Year Life! This fun, interactive, thought-provoking session is based on her widely acclaimed Woman's Advantage Shared Wisdom Calendar. In addition to her annual calendar, Mary has written five books, each presenting ground-breaking ideas for busy women who want to make a difference in their workplace, family, and community.

Growing a business is challenging whether you are just starting or are a seasoned entrepreneur. Developing key strategies to sustain your business are essential to long-term growth. Register today for the March 9 Symposium.

Funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration.