Tavi Fulkerson – A Woman of Influence Making a Difference

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The JLB November “Woman of Influence Making a Difference” is the fabulous Tavi Fulkerson, Owner of The Fulkerson Group. Have you ever met an influential, stylish and successful business owner, who knows all the bold face names and the most significant philanthropists, and deliberately stays out of the news? Meet my friend Tavi, and her exquisite team, who are quietly responsible for rewriting the rules around corporate sponsorship and VIP events in our city.Tavi

Tavi is approaching her 27th North American International Auto Show, where she has grown the number of sponsors from zero to 140. The America’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has 200 corporate sponsors. The Fulkerson Group also arranges partnerships between sponsors for Ford Fireworks Detroit, Detroit Jazz Festival, Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix, Super Bowl XL in 2006, and many others.

Tavi uses specific and deliberate business processes to drive value for her clients, both the organizations holding the events and the sponsors investing in it. She tells the organization what sponsors need to do to make it a great event, and communicates with sponsors to help them maximize the investment they make in the event.  It’s truly an art form to keep such a myriad of constituencies, including the people that attend each event, perfectly satisfied. But Tavi and her team are up to the task.

I recently asked her about her low personal profile. “That’s by design Noelle, and I am really looking forward to telling the Junior League members all about it,” Tavi Fulkerson replied.

We invite new members, prospective members, Actives, former members and Sustainers to join us and meet Tavi and her team at the Junior League of Birmingham, Michigan, Inc. General Membership Meeting at The Community House, on Tuesday, November 14. Enjoy a glass of wine with us from 6:30pm – 7:00pm, and then sit on the edge of your seat at 7:00pm, when I introduce my friend, “The Tavinator.”

-Noelle Schiffer, President, Junior League of Birmingham, Michigan, Inc.

 

Women of Influence – Making a Difference

Welcome to the Junior League of Birmingham, Michigan’s 2017-18 year. I am so excited to have the opportunity to serve all of our members,  new, active and sustainer, as President.
Red woman's shoe, sketch Our theme for this year is “Women of Influence, Making a Difference.” Two of our near term speakers, Peggy Tallet representing the Enough SAID initiative, and Sherry Welsh, a practicing life coach, are perfect examples of two women who have spent their lives being women of influence making a difference.

Peggy Tallet rocked the first General Membership Meeting of this year with her presentation about Enough SAID, a collaborative community initiative to test the thousands of rape kits that had been abandoned, and forgotten, in police storage units. Enough SAID strives to advocate for public funding and raise private sector donations to test the kits, investigate each case and prosecute the offenders, thus securing justice and closure for victims, while ensuring a safer community.  #EnoughSaidenoughsaid-logo

One of the many reasons I wanted Peggy to address the JLB is the Enough SAID initiative came to​ fruition as a result of a collaboration between three organizations: The Michigan Women’s Foundation, Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office and Detroit Crime Commission.  Enough SAID’s success is exponentially more poignant, when you consider that so many moving pieces, personalities, organizations and institutions, had to all fall in line.

The nearly three hundred Junior League chapters across the country have experience in forging similar coalitions. The JLB, and other Junior Leagues, have a rich history of community partnerships formed to right social wrongs and address specific areas of injustice.

The JLB has had internal conversations about forging a relationship with the Michigan  Women’s ​ Commission and the Enough SAID initiative.

Similarly, the JLB welcomes the wonderful and talented Sherry Welsh. Sherry realized the dreams of many other women. SherryWelshAfter many decades as a senior automotive supplier executive with responsibility for hundreds of millions of dollars of business, as well as​ hundreds of employees, around the world, Sherry deliberately pivoted her career. She now coaches people on success in the work place, work life balance, and effective communication techniques.

Sherry is also a published author, and has generously offered to gift her book to the women who attend our training session, “Life Happens.” Sherry’s message is well aligned with the JLB mission, as we teach women to be more effective communicators and negotiators in all of our activities — the community, workplace, home, family and any other areas of our lives. #WomenAndRaises

Peggy and Sherry are both “Women of Influence, Making a Difference.” In addition to all of their accolades, titles and accomplishments, I am proud to share that for more than two decades, Peggy and Sherry have both been close, loyal, brilliant, well-dressed and fun-filled friends of mine.

For that, and for the friendships that I enjoy with JLB members, and for the friendships I have yet to forge with JLB members, I am tremendously grateful.

We are all “Women of Influence, Making a Difference.”
– Noelle Schiffer, President, Junior League of Birmingham, Michigan, Inc.

#WomenAndRaises #EnoughSaid #JLBInfluencers

 

 

You Belong To Something Bigger

With so many things competing for our time and attention, we may ask ourselves why would we add volunteering to our ever-expanding list of things to do? Aren’t we all stretched too thin as it is? Wouldn’t it be more prudent to veg out in front of the television and switch our noodles from over drive to off? Perhaps from time to time, that’s not the worst possible approach to getting some rest. But as it turns out, when we isolate from others or inadvertently develop a series of superficial friendships instead of fostering deep and meaningful relationships because we simply don’t have the time to “invest,” we are going against our very nature.

Scientists who use advanced imaging technology to study brain function report that the human brain is wired to reward caring, cooperation, and service. According to this research, just thinking about another person experiencing harm triggers the same reaction in our brain as when a mother sees distress in her baby’s face. Conversely, the act of helping another triggers the brain’s pleasure center and benefits our health by boosting our immune system, reducing our heart rate, and preparing us to approach and soothe. Positive emotions like compassion produce similar benefits.

In 2013, UnitedHealth Group and the Optum Institute found that volunteering or the act of connecting to others in a meaningful way was linked to better physical, mental and emotional health. The report indicated that volunteering strengthens communities and has tangible, as well as measurable health benefits for those that volunteer.

Today, the Junior League of Birmingham, Michigan, Inc. has 133 active members and 235 sustaining members. That’s 368 women who have set about the business of paying it forward – one community project at a time. Along the way, friendships have been forged and communities have been strengthened. It is also a haven for those who wish to grow and expand their knowledge without criticism or judgment. It is a place to become a mentor and to become a mentee. It’s the opportunity for each one of us to explore how we can leave things better than when we arrived. It’s both an individual and collective journey.

And as we go, we might remember that we are standing on the shoulders of many that have gone before. Established in 1901, the Junior League has evolved into one of the oldest, largest, and most effective women’s volunteer organizations in the world, encompassing more than 150,000 women in 292 Leagues in four countries. Although we go about tending to our little corner of the world, we are part of a larger movement to abolish modern-day slavery (human trafficking), combat childhood obesity and involve ourselves in projects that allow us to give others the support they need to make lasting change. In short, you belong to something so much bigger than yourself!

Welcome to the Junior League of Birmingham, Michigan, Inc. It’s a new year! #LeadershipGameOn

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Junior League of Birmingham, Michigan, Inc. Board of Directors