Thanks to the powerful planning team for the St. Louis Connections-Session 4, the Class of 2020 was offered insight and motivation from several alumnae and influential women in the St. Louis region during their final group gathering of this unusual year. Special thanks are extended to Carolynne Huether (Boeing) who served as our Regional Coordinator and her planning team including other Boeing leaders Tonya Noble and Katie Voss; Emily Brasel (BJC); Danielle Stuart, Lizette Zardetto and Amanda McClerren (Bayer); Juli Shaw and Amanda Barbieri (Ameren); and Emily Cantwell (Lathrop GPM).

The opening day came on the heels of the National Election and what better way to reflect on women gaining the right to vote than to enjoy Beyond the Ballot, St. Louis and Suffrage, a virtual tour of this limited time exhibit at the Missouri History Museum. Women, often portrayed as secondary characters in the city’s formation, were actually key to the establishment, survival, and growth of St. Louis. Through an engaging mix of artifacts, images, media, and interactives, Beyond the Ballot explored women’s unique roles in St. Louis history. One major element of the exhibit traces the long history of the fight for woman’s suffrage in St. Louis and the events leading up to the passage of the 19th Amendment in 1920.

The second day Cultivating Compassionate Leadership panel was timely and engaging as all discussed how the pandemic has wreaked havoc across industries in 2020. At the same time, our country is going through a social and political upheaval. Times of crisis demand a new type of leadership. Awareness, vulnerability, compassion and empathy are key ingredients to leading teams that are going through both physiological and psychological turmoil, while needing to meet business responsibilities.  The panelists included: Jackie Tischler, Senior Vice President and Chief People Officer at BJC HealthCare; Tara Oglesby, Vice President of Customer Experience at Ameren Missouri; Cynthia Stokley, Vice President of Quality North America at Bayer; and Faye Dixon, Director F/A-18 Program Management at Boeing. This panel was expertly moderated by Amanda Barbieri, GMLC Planning Committee. Following the discussion, the class broke into individual rooms moderated by planning team alumnae for more interaction.

The final day featured a GMLC Distinguished Alumnae Panel with panelists sharing their story of how GMLC has impacted them, answering the question likely on the current Challengers mind of “What do I do now? What’s my ‘Challenge’?” Moderated by Juli Shaw, Manager Digital Strategy, Ameren, Class of 2018, the panelists included:
Tonya Noble, Director of International Defense Training in Boeing Global Services, Class of 2010, Board of Directors, GMLF
Mary Elizabeth Grimes, President, Marian Middle School, Class of 2007
Gretchen Pettet, VP, Talent and Culture, Mission Matters Group; Ward 4 Councilmember, City of Washington; Class of 2008; Former Executive Director, GMLF
Shalonda Webb, F/A-18 Mission Management Electronic Warfare Manager, Class of 2020, St. Louis County Councilmember-Elect

The event concluded with a virtual graduation and the class’ one big goal reveal featuring Carolynne Huether, Engineering Director Strike, Surveillance and Mobility, Boeing Defense, Space & Security; Class of 2015; Regional Coordinator for St. Louis Session; and Board of Directors, GMLF starting in 2021 .

To see the entire agenda and learn more about these amazing women, click here and then click again to read Connections