Girl em[Power]ment – Sarah Moshman

Girl em[Power]ment – A Series of Short Essays.

 

Over the next few months Flancake.co will be bringing you the finishing profiles of the Girl em[Power]ment series, which has consisted of interviews with several working women of all ages in different stages of their career. These are women I not only find inspiring and interesting, but whom I think women of all ages should know about and learn from. These women hold careers in several different industries, from creative design to politics. They’re giving us an inside look into what their job is like, how they got there, sharing their advice for twenty-something’s, and touching on what Girl em[Power]ment means to them.

 

This week’s profile is about a woman who inspired me to finish my series – the creator of The Empowerment Project. As I explained with last week’s influencer, I was able to go to a screening of The Empowerment Project, about a group of women who traveled across the US interviewing several different women about empowerment. I was able to speak with the creators of this amazing film after the event, and then they both said yes to being profiled!

 

Introducing Sarah Moshman, documentary filmmaker.
Social Media:
@SarahMosh //twitter
@Sarahmoshman //instagram
Empowerment Documentary //facebook
Upcoming Documentary social:
Losing Sight of Shore //facebook
@LSOSFilm  //twitter
@losingsightofshore //instagram

 

Q: What is your current job title, and can you explain your career path?
A: I am a documentary filmmaker that is passionate about empowering women and girls through media! I grew up loving filmmaking and being behind the camera, I started making movies in middle school, then I went to film school and following that moved out to LA to pursue my dreams of working in TV and film professionally. I started out in reality TV, and worked as a field producer for shows on ABC, NBC, MTC, Lifetime, Bravo and The Food Network, but I missed telling stories that could really create impact. I made two short documentaries, [Girls Rock! Chicago, 2010 and Growing up Strong: Girls on the Run, 2012] then my first feature documentary was The Empowerment Project [watch trailer here] which is about inspirational women across the US and it has been screened all over the country and the world in schools, groups and organizations to start conversations about gender equality. Currently I’m directing my second feature doc called Losing Sight of Shore [watch trailer here] which follows the extraordinary journey of four women who set out to row the Pacific Ocean. I love telling stories about strong, inspirational women and I love my job.

Q: Where did you go to school and what was your major?
A: I went to the University of Miami in Coral Gables, FL and I majored in Video-Film and Psychology.

Q: How do you deal with negativity towards women in the work place, if at all?
A: I think as I’ve gotten older, I can better deal with moments of negativity in the workplace. When you’re first starting out, you are just happy to have the job and be able to pay your bills doing something you like doing. So often times there’s a fear of standing up for yourself and speaking out against discrimination or sexism. But when I would go home that evening, I would feel awful that I didn’t say anything and that I let it slide. It’s so important to let people know when they are making your work environment an unhealthy one, and to believe that if they knew they were upsetting you or someone else, they would hopefully stop that behavior. It’s tough, and every situation is different and every woman has to make that distinction when it comes up. We can all lead by example, and not take part in inappropriate behavior at work, and not allow those things to be done or said when we are the ones leading a team.

Q: Who are some of your role models or mentors, and why?
A: First and foremost my parents Diane and Harvey Moshman. My Dad is a filmmaker and TV producer as well so I have learned so much from him over the years about how to approach my career. He never made me feel like my gender would be an issue when working in this industry and that has empowered me in so many ways. My Mom worked as a chemical engineer and then switched careers to be a lawyer when I was a teenager. She always managed a great work-life balance and has been so encouraging to me.

I also admire Geena Davis and the tireless work she does for the way women are represented in the media. I admire women who stand up for what’s right, take chances in their career and who aren’t afraid to fail.

Q: Have you ever felt unsure of yourself or felt that you weren’t enough, and how did you overcome that?
A: All the time! It’s very difficult to be a filmmaker because a lot of times you feel isolated and that the weight of your project rests on your shoulders. Some days are incredible, and some days you just want to hide under the covers and think about what it would be like to have a “normal job”. I struggle to appreciate the hard work I put in to something as it’s happening because I have so much work ahead of me. When I have those moments I think about the bigger picture. That my films are not about me, they are about other people. That my films are not about me, they are about the people I am trying to inspire. Take a break, take a breath, and keep pushing. You’ll get there.

Q: What are other things you do [hobbies, projects, interests] that you feel passionate about?
A: I host empowerment circles every month to get women together to support each other to thrive in our careers. It’s very powerful and fills up my soul every time. I also host an event twice a year called The F Word Event where amazing speakers and performers come together to celebrate and discuss feminism in many forms. It’s awesome. I love teaching, and meeting with other filmmakers to encourage them to go forward in their projects. I attend tons of networking events and panels about filmmakers and creators. I’m interested in empowering media in all forms.

Q: What do you do in your free time to relax?
A: I love working out – going to spin class, yoga, pilates, bootcamp, etc. And just hanging with my husband Ryan and our dog Kuma. I’m a total homebody and my ideal evening would be cooking dinner and drinking wine with Ryan and watching Netflix.

Q: What career and/or life advice would you give to your twenty year old self?
A: I would say save as much money as you can, and don’t be worried about anyone else’s path. You are writing your own story, no one else can write it for you. Focus on what makes you feel alive, and pursue that passion with your whole heart.

 Q: What does Girl em[Power]ment and overall empowerment mean to you?
A: Empowerment means being able to motivate and encourage yourself to go after any dream you can conceive of. Having the confidence and experience to know that it’s okay to fail, it’s okay to fall down as long as you get back up and keep going. Empowerment means not needing anyone else’s approval to make you feel whole. Find your own happiness and help others find theirs too. May we all feel that way in our lives and in our careers and lift each other up in the process.

 

If you know an incredible woman you think should be featured on the Girl Em[Power]ment series, email flannerylyle@gmail.com

Stay tuned for next week’s influencer, and thanks for following along!

xxo, flancake

Girl em[Power]ment – Katy Nelson

Girl em[Power]ment – A Series of Short Essays.

Over the next few months Flancake.co will be bringing you the Girl em[Power]ment series, which consists of interviews with several working women of all ages in different stages of their career. These are women I not only find inspiring and interesting, but who I think women of all ages should know about and learn from. These women hold careers in several different industries, from creative design to politics.They’ll give us an inside look into what their job is like, how they got there, share their advice for twenty-somethings, and touch on what Girl em[Power]ment means to them.

[be sure to follow along on insta – @girlempowerment]

The next influencer is the spunky Katy Nelson, whom I’ve had the privilege of knowing through my mother for a few years now. I’ve always known Katy was with it, and when I came to college I was able to figure this out even more. She’s helped to guide me through several challenges throughout my college career and help me grow along the way. She’s such a smart and giving woman in way more than one way, so I’m thrilled to share her profile.

Introducing Katy Nelson, with the University of Arkansas. 

Q: What is your current job title, and can you please briefly explain your career path?
A: Assistant Vice Chancellor for Development at the University of Arkansas – After I graduated from college in 1987, I moved to Washington, DC because there were several alumni who also lived there. I held several administrative jobs and decided I should get a graduate degree because the job market was so competitive. I really wasn’t that good at administrative work and I didn’t enjoy it.  I received a graduate assistantship and moved back to Fayetteville in 1990  to get a Master’s Degree in Communication. While in graduate school, I taught two freshman level communication courses and tutored athletes. I discovered there are staff careers in higher education and decided to move to Austin, Texas in 1993 (again because I had several friends who lived there). I also tutored athletes until I landed a job as an Academic Advisor in the College of Natural Sciences.  I joined the Academic Counselor’s Association and volunteered to be on the planning committee for our annual conference. I got to know my colleagues and built my professional network.

After a few years in this role, I became the Coordinator of High School Outreach and Recruiting for the McCombs School of Business at UT. I met with prospective students, parents, hosted admissions sessions, and traveled to cities throughout Texas. We had an emphasis on diversity, and I had to raise money for our programs. This is how I got my introduction to fundraising. The Dean of McCombs reorganized the Development Office and I was hired as the Director of Corporate Relations. I was in this role for eight years before I moved back to Arkansas in 2007 to be the Senior Director of Development and External Relations for the Sam M. Walton College of Business. In 2013 I was promoted to Assistant Vice Chancellor. I manage the fundraising efforts of the colleges and Corporate and Foundation Relations. I also provide strategic oversight of interdisciplinary, strategic objectives, and manage relationships with key donors.

Q: Where did you go to school and what was your major?
A: University of Arkansas, B.A. and M.A. in Communication

Q: How do you deal with negativity towards women in the work place [if at all]?
A: I have been fortunate in that I really have not experienced negativity because I am female. One reason could be that there are generally more women in student service and development roles in higher education than men. I have also had many colleagues who are“strong”, competent women who have been recognized for their accomplishments.

Q: Who are your role models or mentors, and why?
A: Char Dison was one of my mentors at UT Austin. She taught me two very valuable lessons: 1) pick your battles; 2) never burn your bridges. The first one is important because there are always going to be processes, procedures, and people who bother you in the workplace and you simply can’t fight them all. You have to let the little annoyances go and focus on what you really believe in and how you can make a difference. The second one is important because you may be opposed to one person on any given day but have to work with them in a team the next. You also never know who your boss might be one day. I know of colleagues who acted unprofessionally toward another person, and that person became their boss later. Needless to say, they were fired shortly thereafter.

Q: Have you ever felt unsure of yourself or felt that you weren’t “enough”, and how did you overcome that?
A: There have been several occasions when I have been working on a special project and I wasn’t sure how to approach it. Sometimes it was due to lack of confidence in my ability, other times the task seemed overwhelming and daunting. I like to talk through issues, challenges, etc. with others to get their ideas for solutions. Others can offer a fresh perspective.

Q: What are other things you do [hobbies, projects, interest] that you feel passionate about?
A: I like to ride on the Razorback Greenway, hike, and do yoga. I also like going to classes at Clubhaus gym. I am a social person and the group classes are a good fit for me.

Q: What career and/or life advice would you give to your twenty-year-old self?
A: Your first job out of college does not have to be your career job. If I had not had the administrative positions in DC, I may not have gone back to graduate school. Graduate school led me to a career in higher education. I think finding the right career can involve trial and error. Try something and if you don’t like it, move on. Be respectful and professional to everyone, even if they drive you crazy and you don’t like them.

Q: What does Girl em[Power]ment mean to you?
A: Girls can be confident leaders.

[don’t be left out – @girlempowerment has you covered]

graphic by the talented Courtney Ulrich

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Girl em[Power]ment – Linda Denton

Girl em[Power]ment – A Series of Short Essays.

Over the next few months Flancake.co will be bringing you the Girl em[Power]ment series, which consists of interviews with several working women of all ages in different stages of their career. These are women I not only find inspiring and interesting, but who I think women of all ages should know about and learn from. These women hold careers in several different industries, from creative design to politics.They’ll give us an inside look into what their job is like, how they got there, share their advice for twenty-somethings, and touch on what Girl em[Power]ment means to them.

[be sure to follow along on insta – @girlempowerment]

Our next influencer is Linda Denton, an amazing women I’ve known for as long as I can remember from my hometown. She’s a small business owner but has been in several different fields, so she’s knows a thing or two about success.

Introducing Linda Denton, of Pony Express Printing & Supplies

Q: What is your current job title, and can you please briefly explain your career path?
A: I am the owner and operator of Pony Express Printing & Supplies in Mena, AR. This spring will be my 20th anniversary and I feel blessed to have a business I enjoy and continually get to meet new people- some have watched my family grow and been there for each milestone.

Q: Where did you go to school and what was your major?
A: My background is in science. I graduated from Texas A&M University in College Station, TX in 1991 with a B.S. in Biomedical Science. Seems like a stretch doesn’t it? I love science and attended college with the desire to become a veterinarian. After working in some ‘kill’ clinics and with numerous heart-breaking cases I declared NOT to continue with that career goal. I enjoyed the coursework though and remained in a pre-medical science background. This led to a lot of research work which in turn helped me land a job with Johnson Space Center in Houston, TX. I loved it! I also found myself in charge of typing proposals, research presentations, and proposals [at that time it was a hobby- typing/formatting/design].

Q: How do you deal with negativity towards women in the work place [if at all]?
A: My focus is on doing the best job I can. There are occasions where I think the situation lends better for male-to-male interaction and truthfully it raises my blood pressure but I am not sure I want to change that. I have to focus on me: be plain-spoken, have good intentions, state the nature of my concern, and prove that I am capable of providing or performing the task[s] asked of me. An “I CAN” attitude goes a long way.

Q: Who are three of your mentors or role models, and why?
A: My father. He taught me I can do anything I set my mind on and not to sell myself short. Jean ‘Tex’ Narlo, my friends mother, who had a Merle Norman store in Tyler, TX. She was successful as an entrepreneur but was driven to keep exploring her passions and business opportunities [some a success and some just another lesson]. My final mentor is ever evolving. There have been a number of women that I have admired and consider worthy of mentioning mostly because they seem to effortlessly balance motherhood/career/household/and Christian role model.

Q: What are other things you do [hobbies, projects, interest] that you feel passionate about?
A: I love to complete crafting projects. The DIY channel is my downfall and addiction. To make or build something [my headboard for example] lets me relieve stress, work through emotions and end up with a project I can take pride in completing.

Q: Is there anyone you think that is making a difference in women empowerment that you think we should all know about?
A: At my age, I am thankful for the grey haired ladies who spent their years being a mother and being happy with that title. There is job that we females take on when we have children. My most important position is that of Mother. I want to instill love, family and hard-work in my children and that ‘home’ is a cherished institution. My hat is off to all women and I realize we each have our own goals, dreams, and desires.

Q: What do you do in your free time to relax?
A: I love being outside and enjoying walks, fishing, or just playing with my youngest child.

Q: What career and/or life advice would you give to your twenty-year-old self?
A: Listen more, talk less. Give more and recognize your blessings and say ‘thank you’.

Q: What does Girl em[Power]ment mean to you?
A: Girl em[Power]ment means feeling comfortable with who you are, striving for more, and taking on challenges that you believe in – make a difference.

I think we could all take Linda’s advice to give more, recognize our blessings and say ‘thank you’. I know I can!

Stay tuned for our next influencer–be sure to follow along on insta @girlempowerment.
Xo, Flancake

[graphic in collaboration with Courtney Ulrich of Alligator Food Design]

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[don’t be left out – follow @girlempowerment for updates]

Girl em[Power]ment – Hannah Morehart

Girl em[Power]ment – A Series of Short Essays.

Over the next few months Flancake.co will be bringing you the Girl em[Power]ment series, which consists of interviews with several working women of all ages in different stages of their career. These are women I not only find inspiring and interesting, but who I think women of all ages should know about and learn from. These women hold careers in several different industries, from creative design to politics.They’ll give us an inside look into what their job is like, how they got there, share their advice for twenty-somethings, and touch on what Girl em[Power]ment means to them.

Our next influencer is the incredible Hannah Morehart, one of the coolest + driven ladies. She started her own line years ago while still in school, recently moved to NYC, and yet is so humble. I met Hannah my freshman year after reaching out to her regarding her own brand, where we met and have continued to cross paths. Read below to hear advice from a twenty-something that recently moved to a new city, but is still figuring things out and will be the first to admit it. [PS, the above picture is from her senior design project, where she designed + created a complete collection by hand].

Introducing Hannah Morehart, of Ross Stores Inc. 
Insta – @hannahmorehart

Q: What is your current job title, and can you please briefly explain your career path?
A: I am currently an Assistant Buyer for Ross Stores, Inc. in Manhattan, NY! Long story short, I am being trained to run a smaller business within a corporation. It’s pretty interesting! My career path, like most recent college graduates, is TBA. The biggest thing for me right now is realizing what a blessing it is to have the opportunity to live in New York City in the middle of the fashion industry. But hopefully soon my path will be a little more clear!

Q: Where did you go to school and what was your major?
A: I went to the University of Arkansas and I majored in Apparel Merchandising and Product Development.

Q: How do you deal with negativity towards women in the work place [if at all]?
A: I use negativity in the workplace – whether it be toward me or women in general – as motivation. Regardless of the situation, I always try to pick out my strengths and let them shine. In the end, negativity won’t have to be an issue if you don’t let it define you or bring you down.

Q: Who are your role models or mentors, and why?
A: My grandmother. She recently passed away, but she is one of the main reasons I am who I am today. She taught me step by step how to sew at a young age, spent hours with me talking about silhouettes, textiles, and fabrics, and planted a seed in me that grew into a love for fashion and design.
My mom. She’s not only one of my best friends and #1 cheerleaders, but she’s also taught me how to be a Light in a dark world, to look at the positive in every situation, and she’s also given me someone to look to one day when I get to be a momma! Last, Diane Von Furstenberg. She took her passion for apparel and design and revolutionized the dress by creating the “wrap dress” silhouette that is now deemed a classic. She has also made an empire of not only apparel, but jewelry, handbags, and even luggage. Pretty cool, huh?

Q: Have you ever felt unsure of yourself or felt that you weren’t “enough”, and how did you overcome that?
A: Absolutely, I feel like everyone feels this way at times. I overcame, and still overcome this, by realizing and remembering that I am in this place for a certain reason. At the end of the day, I may not be the most successful designer, business woman, or whatever in the world, but if I lead of life of joy, positivity, and purpose, I know that I am enough! [Just like everyone reading this!!]

Q: What do you do in your free time to relax?
A: I go outside and I explore! There is so much to see in the world and you will miss so many things if you are looking out of a car window. I love to walk and venture to places I’ve never seen – especially in the city!

Q: What career and/or life advice would you give to your twenty-year-old self?
A: Always remember to stay positive. You will not always be in your dream job or ideal position, but stay positive and work your tail off and you’ll get there. BUT the most important thing I would tell myself – never forget who you are or where you come from. You will be so much happier and will be so much more successful if you never fall into the trap of camouflaging into the crowd. However, since moving away from home, it has become so evident that the people who love you the most and who are cheering you on nonstop are those who have watched you grow into who you are today. Those are the people who should matter most in your life.

Q: What does Girl em[Power]ment mean to you?
A: Girl em[Power]ment, to me, means that every girl is different; however, every girl is just as talented, beautiful, and means just as much as the girl standing right next to her or staring at her from the cover of a magazine. That is what should be taught and made evident.

I especially love this profile because it is evident that even twenty-somethings in the work place realize it’s important to know that Girl em[Power]ment is about much more than just rising to the top, but also recognizing that other girls standing and rising next to them can get there, too.

Stay tuned for Sunday’s profile – you won’t want to miss it!
Xo, Flancake

[be sure to follow the Girl em[Power]ment Instagram – @GirlEmpowerment for updates]

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