2020 WIBC Session III Presenter Bios
Entrepreneur Pitch Workshop
Goldman Sachs 10kSB at Community College of Philadelphia
Colleen Mook, Speaker, Podcaster, Small Business Consultant, ColleenMook.com
Colleen Mook is an experienced and successful entrepreneur and early-stage investor, having created, developed and sold her business Baby Be Hip as well as having founded or invested in several others. Since selling her 17-year old business in July 2019, she now focuses her time on helping others develop their businesses and balance the demands of work and home. She is a frequent guest speaker and consultant and she hosts a podcast called Be Bold, Be Brave, Be YOU!
Colleen has been featured in various television, print and online media – including The TODAY Show — for her accomplishments in building a successful brand while raising a family. She has been a member of Count Me In for Women’s Economic Independence, was named a Make Mine a Million $ Business award winner in 2011, a Lifetime Moms and Spark & Hustle award winner in 2012 and won a Sam’s Club and SCORE’s Small Business Award as well. She has been featured by the Female Entrepreneur Association and named a Daring Doer by Tory Johnson. Her company and its products were featured on Good Morning America and The TODAY Show, FOX Business and People.com. Colleen completed the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business Program and has been on the PA Conference for Women Social Media Street Team since 2012.
Colleen guided Baby Be Hip through four e-commerce implementations and has been an aggressive user of social media and networking to build and market her brand. She understands how to start a business with little money and grow it with a lot of hard work, hustle, and grit.
Colleen is an experienced speaker covering relevant topics, such as small business, customer service as a differentiator and entrepreneurship. She is passionate about empowering others by conveying the principles that have fueled her success and takes an active role in mentoring young women and other small business owners. She speaks on resilience, work/life balance and managing the mental and physical loads of work and home. She also speaks about her experiences raising a child with significant special needs and educating others about differences, respect, and tolerance. She is always up for a speaking engagement.
Pam Henshall, President, Greater Northeast Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce
Pam Henshall is President of the Greater Northeast Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce (GNPCC), the largest business advocacy organization in the Greater Northeast Philadelphia community. Hired in April 2015, she brings to the GNPCC a wealth of professional experience as an administrator, marketing manager, and event planner.
Tasked with providing the organization a stronger foothold in the changing, technologically charged business industry, she has managed in just three months to plan and develop new, aggressive strategies focused on growing membership, bolstering programming and increasing revenue.
Ms. Henshall is no stranger to the work of business advocacy, having served nearly 19 years as Vice President of the Cherry Hill Regional Chamber of Commerce. Her responsibilities included all marketing, public relations, and event planning for membership.
Immediately before her employment at the GNPCC, Ms. Henshall was Director of Development at United Cerebral Palsy of Philadelphia and Vicinity. Her work there included business development, fundraising, marketing, public relations, and event planning.
Her experience as a pioneering entrepreneur as President of her former company, Shifting Trends, LLC, afforded the opportunity to explore business-to-business membership and marketing online. Ms. Henshall is presently employing those skills as an integral part of the GNPCC’s vertical growth. Ownership of her own business resulted in a priceless skill that helps immensely in her daily contacts with business owners, service providers, and entrepreneurs.
Session – Personal Development
Brilliantly Resilient: Embracing Your Past, Present, and Future
Mary Fran Bontempo, Author, Speaker, and Humorist
Mary Fran Bontempo is a 2-time TEDx speaker, author, humorist and podcast host who teaches audiences to control their most powerful influence: Self-Talk. A sought- after speaker and presenter for corporate and association seminars, workshops, conferences and events, Mary Fran is author of The Woman’s Book of Dirty Words, Not Ready for Granny Panties, and the soon to be released The 15 Minute Master. Mary Fran has also written for multiple online platforms, including The Huffington Post and Thrive Global. She is co-founder of the podcast, 4 Chicks Chatting. After thirty years’ experience as owner of a full-service recruiting firm and finding herself in the middle of a perfect life storm—turning 50, a crashing economy, and most devastating, a son with a heroin addiction—Mary Fran created the blog, Not Ready for Granny Panties, authoring multiple books and developing a life-affirming brand full of practical wisdom and wit. Mary Fran proves small changes in self-talk yield big life changes, allowing individuals to redefine their lives both professionally and personally in a rapidly changing world. A frequent media guest and speaker, audiences delight in her empowering and entertaining message. Find her at maryfranbontempo.com.
Kristin Smedley, Author and Speaker
Session – Communications
5 Secrets to Confident Public Speaking
Laura Sicola, Ph.D., Founder, Vocal Impact Productions
Dr. Laura Sicola is a leadership communication and influence expert, speaker, and author of Speaking to Influence: Mastering Your Leadership Voice. Her mission is to help executives become confident, inspiring leaders whether on stage, on-camera or just on the phone in order to get the results they want and make a positive, lasting impact. As the founder of Vocal Impact Productions, she has trained and coached executives at Comcast, IBM, the US Department of Commerce and Women Against Abuse along with politicians and business owners and nonprofit leaders from around the world.
Laura’s TEDx talk, “Want to Sound Like a Leader? Start by Saying Your Name Right,” has over 6 million views, and she has been featured on Fox & Friends First, NBC10 @Issue and PHL 17. She has also spoken to thousands at conferences such as the Professional Business Women of California Conference and the PA Conference for Women.
Laura received her PhD in educational linguistics from the University of Pennsylvania, where she also taught from 2001-2013.