Stronger Together Toward Professional and Personal Growth


Mon Apr 17 2023 at 08:00 am to Tue Apr 18 2023 at 04:00 pm


University of Phoenix | Phoenix, AZ

Gain insights and strategies to become stronger in your professional and personal life with support from Federally Employed Women
About this Event

Extended Stay America Suites Phoenix Airport

3421 E. Elwood Street, Phoenix 85040

Phone: 602.438.2900

Key words for those reserving a room: "Federally Employed Women" to receive the discounted room rate of $121.56 plus city, local and state room tax.

Amenities: Parking free, Breakfast free, Wi-Fi free

Block booking time frame: Saturday April 15 through April 18 (check out time) to allow those who want to arrive early to visit the Grand Canyon, the Musical Instrument Museum, Desert Botanical Gardens, Heard Museum and other local sights.

Our Western Region Training Theme this year is "Stronger Together toward Professional and Personal Growth" with active support from Federally Employed Women (FEW). We are celebrating 55 YEARS OF FEW STRONG, 1968-2023.
We value diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging. All are welcome to attend our training program!

Our event will include a box lunch, healthy snacks and beverages each day.

Program Highlights:
  • Welcome by FEW National President, Pamela Richards
  • Hear “How a Whistleblower Took on the VA and Won” by Keynote Speaker: Paula Pedene, Public Affairs Officer, VA, retired; Author
  • Learn “Lessons from the President’s Doctor” by Keynote Speaker: Rear Admiral & Doctor Eleanor C. "Connie" Mariano, USN, retired; Author
  • Discuss “Combatting the Culture: Overcoming Adversity and Biases in the Workforce” with Jakia Lindley, Staff Sergeant, US Air Force; Author - War at Home
  • Learn the “Three Big Presentation Mistakes and What to Do About Each One” facilitated by Dr. Tyrone Holmes
  • Hear about “The Five Levels of Leadership” by Yanick Hicks, PharmD, Speaker and Coach, James Maxwell Team
  • Practice breathing & movement techniques for health and stress management with Seifu Andrew "Andy" Barkworth
  • Learn "How to Go from Penned to Published in 7 Steps: Tips for the First Time Auhor" from Caroleen Smiley, Editor

And so much more - Check out our Agenda below!

Agenda is subject to change

Speaker Biographies
Andrew Barkworth

Andrew "Andy" Barkworth is a gifted teacher who guides people into self-empowerment through breath, mind, body, and energy practices. Among his favorite places to teach are Paradise Valley Community College, The Sedona Yoga Festival, and for Panache Desai’s Global Gathering. At Paradise Valley Community College Andy has taught martial and healing arts practices like Tai Chi, Chi Kung, Kung Fu, and Meditation for over 20 years. He also became the coordinator for the Teaching Healing Meditation for Stress Management program. He founded On Path Healing Arts to help guide others with these powerful and practical life-balancing practices. This platform for sharing helps people to live with and enjoy higher states of health and happiness. Andy will inspire you to move your body, free your mind, and to energize your spirit.

Tee Cervantes

Tewana "Tee" Cervantes, MPA, MTS is a freelance, Grants Writer and Administrator, Healthcare Chaplain, and DEI&B Educator. However, she simply refers to herself as a "Grants & Civility Guru."

Formally educated and credentialed at Chatham University (Pittsburgh, PA), Savannah State University (Savannah, GA), Emory University (Atlanta, GA), La Universidad de Los Andes (Merida, Venezuela, S.A.), the Georgia Academy for Economic Development (Region 12, GA), and at three, Certified Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) Centers in Arizona and Texas, Tee has academically prepared herself to share reliable resources and information in public administration, spiritual care, healthcare ethics, and community engagement.

Tee has worked in municipal, county, state, and federal government over the past 20 years and has written and/or managed over 25 different types of private and public grants valued at nearly $200MM during her career and made DEI&B a focal part of each one long before it was in vogue to do so.

Her volunteer service in the past five years has included active service to and/or Board leadership at the: Arizona Community Tree Council; Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management; Arizona State Parks and Trails; Arizona Site Steward Program Foundation; Arizona Special Olympics; Casa de Hogar de Las Ninas (Baja California, MX); Sunrise Rotary Club; and University of Arizona College of Medicine.

When not working and volunteering, she is enjoying time in the great outdoors with her husband and Jack Russell Terrier or chatting with family and close friends.

Tee's first publication on DEI&B will be released at the RTP and each attendee will receive a complimentary e-copy!

Carol Culbertson

Carol Culbertson is a native of Honolulu, Hawaii, & a graduate of the University of Hawaii, Class of 1967, BA-English, career goal: law librarian. In her freshman year 1962, Carol was recruited by a Navy Reserve Communications unit at Pearl Harbor which resulted in Carol earning 5 years of enlisted service, a Good Conduct medal, and a Navy ensign's commission on Graduation Day, June 13, 1967. After graduating Officer Candidate School in Newport, Rhode Island in October 1967, Carol joined Patrol Squadron THIRTY-ONE Detachment at Naval Air Station North Island, San Diego, CA where her duties were Assistant Admin Officer, Classified Materials Control Officer, and Public Affairs Officer, a wonderful tour of duty.

After HONORABLE discharge, Carol traveled to Yokosuka, Japan where her Navy husband was stationed. She worked at the Ship Repair Facility, the Naval Hospital, and the Admiral's HQ at Naval Forces, Japan where she served as the Director of ten programs including the All-Navy Sports & Recreation Program and the Combined Federal Campaign, an exciting career for 5 years.

Returning stateside in Dec 1975, Carol worked at the Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, KS in 1976, followed by 11 years with the US Forest Service & personnel management work on three National Forests in California and the Coconino NF in Flagstaff for 7 years where she was the Personnel Chief. Finally, her last 16 years of personnel management service were with IRS in Phoenix and Denver, retiring in April 2004 with 33 years of service. Earlier in December 2003, Carol retired from the Navy as an Intelligence Officer with 34 years of service.

Carol's history with FEW was joining FEW in 1980, and serving as Chapter President in Phoenix and Denver, and also serving on the Region Boards in Western and Rocky Mountain Regions, and on the National FEW Board as Special Assistant-Military Women to 4 National Presidents Dorothy Nelms, Jeanette Miller, Jenifer Bungert, and Pat Wolfe.

Carol keeps busy advocating for veterans via two veterans’ organizations - Unified Arizona Veterans, and the Association of the US Navy. Carol is the current Chapter President, Phoenix Chapter.

Yanick Hicks

Yanick earned his doctorate degree in Ph*rm*cy from Marshall University school of Ph*rm*cy and is a pharmacist in the state of Arizona. He is a president Advisory Council member and Executive Director of the John Maxwell team who is passionate about leadership coaching and development. He is certified to coach, facilitate, speak, and train individuals and groups in the areas of leadership development, personal growth, and professional skills. Mentored and trained by John Maxwell and mentors of his world-class facility, Yanick has the skills, resources, and experience to help teams improve and sustain productivity, performance, and profitability.

Yanick has experience speaking at the Arizona charter school association conference, Cochise County unified school districts conference, Innovation in Education conference, Douglas unified school district administrators retreat, Parker unified school district, Wickenburg unified school district, charter schools such as La Paloma Academy, Liberty Traditional, Heritage Glendale, Leman Academy of Excellence etc. He provides leaders with practical tools that positively and immediately impacts their leadership styles. He is dedicated to equipping leaders with skills that can be applied in real-world situations with positive and lasting results. Yanick believes in equipping organizations with leadership skills through a values-based, people-centric, servant leadership approach.

In addition to his passion for leadership development Yanick is also very active in coaching youth sports, traveling and spending time with family and friends.

Tyrone A Holmes, Ed.D

Dr. Tyrone A. Holmes is a professional speaker and consultant who has spent more than two decades teaching thousands of people to build powerful relationships in diverse settings. He received his bachelor’s degree in Rehabilitation Education and master’s degree in Counselor Education from Penn State University. Dr. Holmes received a second master’s degree in Business Management from the State University of New York, before earning a perfect 4.0 GPA in his Counselor Education doctoral program at Penn State.

As the owner of T.A.H. Performance Consultants, he has facilitated more than 1,500 keynotes, training seminars and virtual workshops that have taught participants to connect with others despite their differences, to effectively articulate their messages, to connect with diverse audiences and groups, and to reduce the negative impact of unconscious bias.

Dr. Holmes served as a full-time faculty member at Eastern Michigan University in the Department of Leadership and Counseling, and at Wayne State University in the Department of Theoretical and Behavioral Foundations. He is also a Past President of the Arizona Chapter of the National Speakers Association. Dr. Holmes was awarded the designation of eSpeakers Certified Virtual Presenter and most recently, Certified Virtual Host. He loves to facilitate fun, interactive sessions that provide useful tools and techniques for participants!

Brenda Holt

Brenda Holt is the Associate State Director of Community Outreach and Advocacy for AARP Arizona. She is responsible for executing AARP’s national program initiatives on a local and state level. She serves on the Governor’s Advisory Council on Aging. She recently joined DUET’s board of director’s and is a past board member for the Foundation for Senior Living, the Arizona Foundation for Women, and the Arizona African American Advisory Council.

She holds a master’s degree in Organizational Management from the University of Phoenix. Since locating to Arizona, she has also worked for such organizations as PetSmart Corporate Charities and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona. In 2021 she was awarded the Coretta Scott King “Compassion Award” for community service by the City of Tempe. In 2019 she was awarded the “Community Unsung Hero” Award from the AZ Commission of African American Affairs. In 2018 she was awarded the Black Board of Directors – “Dr. Charles R. Campbell Outstanding Alumna Award”, and in 2017 the Arizona Celebration of Women “Achieving My Purpose” Award.

Brenda is a fifteen-year resident of Avondale and formerly from the state of Michigan. Brenda is married and has two adult daughters, an avid reader and lover of animals.

Jakia Lindley

Activist and survivor, Jakia Monee Lindley, bestselling author of War at Home, is a native of Canton, Ohio. She enlisted in the Air Force in 2010 and was assigned to the 437th Supply Chain Operations Squadron, where she managed equipment support for four Air Force Global Logistics Support Center bases valued over 727 million dollars. She holds a Bachelor of Applied Science in Technical Management from American Military University, where she graduated cum laude. Throughout her career, Jakia has participated in several exercises as well as deployments to locations in the Middle East and Southeast Asia in direct support of Operations ENDURING FREEDOM and FREEDOM’S SENTINEL. She passionately serves in a variety of programs where she earned a certification in the Master Resiliency Program, Six-Sigma Green Belt, and Sexual Assault Volunteer Victim Advocate. Additionally, she founded Moving Mountains Publishing, a literary publishing company devoted to giving voice to underrepresented groups.

Paula Pedene

Paula Pedene, APR, Fellow PRSA has a well-earned reputation as a public relations strategist and counselor in both government and non-profit realms.

She currently serves as Executive Director of the nonprofit Honoring America’s Veterans and as Owner/Principal of her own public relations firm Paula Pedene & Associates. In these roles, she provides strategic counsel to senior leaders and managers and to build trusted relationships between the organizations and their stakeholders.

Pedene is a five-time PRSA Silver Anvil award recipient for Institutional Programs (2004) Reputation Management (2007) Community Outreach (2010, 2020) and Public Service (2020).

Her leadership awards include the Percy Award from the Phoenix PRSA Chapter, the Platinum Leadership Award from the PRSA Western District and the Senator John McCain Inspirational Leadership Award in Arizona.

She is a member of the PRSA College of Fellows, a member of the PRSA Board of Ethics and Professional Standards and she earned distinction as a PRSA PR Pro of the Year (2015) for her ethical stand as a Phoenix VA Whistleblower. In this realm she was able to help expose the VA Wait Time Scandal and call for change to legislation and accountability within the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Caroleen Smiley

Caroleen Smiley is a Book Editor, Self-Published Author, and Public Speaker who owns and operates YPRS Editorial Services.

It is a love for reading that propelled Caroleen into a career as a Book Editor after 20 plus years as an Office Administrator in Corporate America. She has taken her experience and skills, specifically her writing and editing skills, and poured them into her editing firm.

Caroleen's greatest strength is her ability to deliver a final enhanced manuscript that still maintains the author’s voice and writing style. She has enjoyed success as a Book Editor with published titles across a variety of genres including memoirs, sci-fi, self-help, journals, and children's books.

Over the years, Caroleen has met numerous people who desire to write a book but just don’t know how to get started. Her mission is to help these people get their book(s) written, edited, and into the marketplace.

As your Book Editor, Caroleen's sole purpose is to partner with you to present your voice to the world in a way that transports the reader to a new experience and translates into passive income for you.

Caroleen is ready to help you take your manuscript from idea to bestseller! Until then...Happy Writing!!

Lisa Zimmerman

Lisa Keakalaulono Zimmerman is the Federally Employed Women (FEW)’s Western Region Manager representing Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, and Overseas – Pacific. As a Charter Member of the Southern California Gold Coast Chapter, Lisa helped establish the Chapter, and served as Chapter President, VP, Assistant RM, Regional & Chapter Chairs, and helped plan and execute numerous Regional Training Program (RTP)s. Lisa was awarded FEW’s National “Distinguished Service” award, the “Unsung Shero”, FAPAC’s National “Outstanding Individual Leadership” award, the Joyce W. Stewart Memorial Award, WR “Outstanding Member”, and University of Laverne’s 125th Anniversary “Diversity and Inclusion” Award. Lisa is a Diamond Lifetime Member. As SCGC President, the Chapter won FEW’s National Award (Chapter) 1st Place for the Special Emphasis Program on “March to Selma”. As a Cyber Security Professional, Lisa is NAVFAC NITC’s Assessment and Authorize (A&A) Lead, leading her team as Risk Management Framework Coordinator, and the Package Submitting Official (PSO) for all NAVFAC-Systems RMF activities, and has served as a Deputy Information Systems Security Manager and Cybersecurity Workforce Program Manager. Lisa has a Bachelor of Arts (Music), a Master of Science (Leadership and Management). She founded Naval Base Ventura County’s Commanding Officer’s EEO Award- the Joyce W. Stewart Memorial Award, and the Jude Scholarship. Lisa is a wife of a US Navy Seabee (RET), and a Mother, and a Tutu!

Additional Bios will be added as we receive them!

FEW is a private, non-profit organization founded in 1968 shortly after government issued Executive Order 11375 which added sex-discrimination to the list of prohibited discrimination within the Federal Government. Although E.O. 11375 was an important milestone, several women were concerned that the Civil Service Commission and individual agencies may not put forth the vigorous effort necessary to ensure compliance with E.O. 11375. Although the Federal Women’s Program (FWP) had been established, the early organizers of FEW realized that the government could dismantle FWP, and they wanted to ensure that there would always be an organization dedicated to promoting equality for women and addressing concerns of women in the Federal workforce. Additionally, because FWP is a government function, it is limited in its political scope, and cannot lobby Congress. As a private organization, FEW is not restricted in that area.

As a private organization, FEW works as an advocacy group to improve the status of women employed by the Federal government. This includes contact with Congress to encourage progressive legislation. FEW national officers meet with management officials at all levels of agencies to demonstrate support of the FWP, encourage officials to support the program and to obtain insight on the effectiveness of the FWP at agency and local levels.

Source: is FEW

Where is it happening?

University of Phoenix, 4035 South Riverpoint Parkway, Phoenix, United States

USD 110.00 to USD 135.00

Federally Employed Women (FEW) Western Region

Host or Publisher Federally Employed Women (FEW) Western Region

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