Serve as mentors and lift others, businesswoman urges Editor remembers people who took time to help her

February 09, 1997|By Judy Reilly | Judy Reilly,CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Recalling the encouragement she received from mentors throughout her career, Margie Freaney, editor of the Baltimore Business Journal, challenges women to embolden one another.

Freaney, speaking at a women's network luncheon Thursday at Martin's in Westminster, said that one reason more women do not start their own businesses or move into powerful positions is because they lack a mentor, someone who will take time out of their schedules to help, explain, encourage.

"What you learn in business can't be learned in a classroom," she told about 65 women who attended the luncheon, sponsored by the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce.

"We should all be mentors, and when we help each other, that's when we really achieve success -- and this room wouldn't be big enough to hold all the women who own or run their own companies," she said.

Freaney, who began her career at the News-Times in Danbury, Conn., cited mentors who encouraged and challenged her: her father, who was in the newspaper business; and two editors -- one who supported everything she did as long as "she didn't cry in the newsroom" and another who had "more confidence in me than I had in myself."

"There's power in encouragement and taking an interest in someone else's work and life," she said. "We need mentors ourselves, and can act as mentors for others."

Many who attended the luncheon came to network. The chamber sponsors four women's network luncheons each year. They're open to women who own their own businesses or who are officers in local companies.

Clearly, some participants had mentoring on their minds before they showed up at the luncheon.

Ann Miller, who works on the administrative staff at the Carroll County Farm Museum in Westminster, brought her daughter Melissa, a sophomore at Maryvale Preparatory School for Girls in Baltimore County. Melissa tagged along because she is interested in marketing and creative writing.

Theresa Daytner, an accountant in the Eldersburg firm of Daytner, Whelan, Barksy and Graham, invited her office intern, Cyndi Moiani, a senior at Liberty High School.

"Cyndi's getting a true picture of a small accounting firm. She does an assortment of jobs in the office for 10 hours a week," Daytner said.

And Pat Kennedy, business mentor coordinator at Carroll's Business and Employment Resource Center, has initiated a mentor program that matches high school students with a businesswoman who will take time to "listen, support and be a friend."

Kennedy's project operates through "Maryland's Tomorrow," a high school dropout-prevention program.

Susan Paglia, a retail credit analyst with Farm Credit in Westminster, summed up the mentoring message.

"I hadn't really thought about my own mentors," she said. "I didn't have one specific person, but some people always took the time from their own workload to help me.

"It's so easy to give up."

Pub Date: 2/09/97

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