Dear Younger Selves

Local Ladies Reflect On Advice They Would Give Themselves Earlier In Life

Leslie Gill | President, Rung For Women |

What Leslie would tell her younger self:

  1. Don’t pick a college major based upon what you think your career will be; pick something that you enjoy or that piques your interest at that moment. I majored in English Arts, thinking I would go to law school to become a sports agent. Being an English major gave me a strong communications foundation, but I hated doing the work. I never went to law school, I actually went to business school, and I’m certainly not a sports agent now. As a young person, you don’t have to have life all figured out!
  2. Don’t sweat the small stuff! Enjoy the little things in life.
  3. Pay attention in Junior Achievement and Personal Finance classes. Having a spending plan is a girl’s best friend!

Leslie's top two accomplishments to tackle this year include completing a 50-mile bike ride, and resuming international travel. "There are so many places in the world that I want to visit," she adds. 

Rung For Women is a membership-based group dedicated to the mission of all women receiving holistic support, encouragement and opportunities that position them to pursue their dreams and to thrive – as family members, role models, equal wage earners, entrepreneurs and community leaders.

Faith Berger | CEO, Taylor Scientific | 

What Faith would tell her younger self:

  1. (...I don’t even remember my younger self! In that, we're always evolving, and it's impossible to know how to guide your younger self.) But I would share that each unique experience in business shapes the next chapter. Specifically, I would say always have a concrete business plan, be creative within that plan. Allow yourself the time to reflect and build on that experience.
  2. Don’t be afraid to go for it! Don’t be shy! Experiment with your ideas.
  3. Capitalize on your talents and use the skills you acquire. My younger self didn't have access to the internet, social media and all of the new tools to grow business. With technology and using these principals, the sky is the limit on growing your business. 

Yet this year, Faith says she would like to bring on specific new companies that haven’t yet done business with Taylor Scientific and to strengthen current accounts. She'd also like to grow Faith Berger Art Consultants, so the website is generating business and selling art prints on a daily basis. She adds that she'd also like to partner with companies to use her designs for home goods. 

Taylor Scientific offers more than 30,000 products, and maintains an extensive inventory of chemicals, equipment and supplies in a 30,000-square-foot warehouse at 950 Hanley Industrial Ct.

Karen Kallish | President, Estelle W. and Karen S. Kalish Fund, and Founder, HOME WORKS! The Teacher Home Visit Program |

What Karen would tell her younger self:

  1. I wish I had exercised CHOICE much earlier in life and had not been in a reactive mode. (Example, I didn't like my seventh grade teacher so I didn't do school work. How stupid -- only hurting me, not him!) 
  2. As part of CHOICE, I wish I had worked much harder in school and not spent so much time socializing, talking, rebelling and other unconstructive things. 
  3. Also as part of CHOICE, I wish I had chosen a loving, supportive partner/husband, instead of being a bad "picker" twice.

While losing weight is on Karen's 2022 list, she says she'd also like to design and pilot an Education School college course to teach teachers-to-be about parents and families, and the importance of the relationship between school and home, parents and teachers to the success of struggling students. She believes there are few-to-no such courses, and teachers graduate with little-to-no knowledge of all types of parents and are afraid of them rather than welcoming them to the classroom, making them feel comfortable and working with them to be engaged in their children's education.

HOME WORKS! connects teachers to parents with virtual home visits and Parent Teacher Learning Team meetings that involve and empower the entire family. Karen also founded other organizations and programs:  Cultural Leadership, Books and Badges and Operation Understanding DC.

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