Women History Month: Outstanding Women, Part 2

March 26, 2019
Written By Deliyanis Rosa Fontanez

The best part about highlighting outstanding women is appreciating the diversity and versatility of each one. The beauty of diversity is that each component contributes to benefit the whole. And that is exactly what this group of women does. Their diverse background and work experience enrich the organizations they are a part of and promotes creative solutions for their community.

Lynda Garber, Partner of Garber Development

When it comes to versatility, we cannot help but think of Lynda Garber. A University of Florida graduate in Business Administration, Lynda has decades of experience in Marketing and Home Sales. Her resume displays an extensive career of home sales which led to the increase of revenue for various realty companies, including Garber Development. Lynda's career began in General Homes in Central Florida. There, she stood out by making record-setting sales. Thus, awarding her "Rookie of the Year" and the National Top Producer Award. Additionally, some time later, Landstar Homes appointed her as the manager of one of the largest projects in Central Florida. This project resulted in her creating a custom marketing sales program for the United Kingdom market.

"I speak to everyone in the same way, whether he is the garbage man or the president of the university." -Albert Einstein.

Words Lynda lives by.

Lynda's natural ability to win people and her contagious personality has made her successful in the real state and marketing fields. Today, with her growth-oriented demeanor, she advises and gives input in decision-making at Garber Development, thus contributing to its success. Lynda Garber is the true embodiment of what happens when you love what you do and play well with others.

Jessica Van Curen, Director of Marketing and Communication at Admiral Farragut Academy

The mission of Admiral Farragut Academy is to prepare students by providing a college preparatory environment that promotes academic excellence, leadership skills, and social development. But in order to achieve this mission, its Marketing and Communication department devises creative ways to convey the school's mission and vision to the world. And all of this is thanks to Jessica Van Curen. Under Jessica's leadership, Admiral Farragut Academy has been able to share stories about the impact that the school has had on students and alumni. Also, through her work, the school has been able to reach out to a population nationally and internationally.

"Every day I am dedicated to giving my best. I think that hard work, building strong relationships with my colleagues and connections, as well as my desire to have clear, effective communication has kept me on the road which led me to a leadership role."

Jessica reflects on her career at Admiral Farragut Academy.

Jessica's success comes from her solution-driven attitude and a desire to improve the organization as a whole. Additionally, the Marketing and Communication opportunities that the school provides, allow Jessica to efficiently lead her team to carry out a multitude of projects on a daily basis. Jessica's story is an example of the positive impact of marketing.

Kimberly Ellis, Program Director at energyhill

Kimberly  brings a unique perspective to the energyhill team. She has over 20 years of professional experience in engineering, manufacturing, and program management in the automotive, aerospace, and firearms industries. Her education includes Stanford University, where she obtained her Masters of Science in Manufacturing Systems Engineering (MSMSE) as a General Motors fellow.

Kimberly lived overseas (China) and traveled extensively to Germany, Brazil, and Poland, working on startup teams for manufacturing facilities. Her background and experience complement energyhill in many aspects. Her input is unparalleled, as she analyzes things from an engineering point of view. And although she is the program director, Kimberly also wears many hats including quality assurance and brainstorming. But as a program director, she is responsible for the successful initiation, planning, execution, monitoring, and completion of projects.

"Making success personal:
For me, success is not in a title or what your annual salary is.

Success is being a:
Loving but Disciplined Parent - Prepare your children to tackle the world with integrity and compassion.
Supportive Mentor - Build your subordinates up to become better than you; It’s not a competition, their successes are your successes.
Forever Student - Grow and experience new things through continued learning through all avenues and from all people, both young and old.
Giver of Appreciation & Praise - Appreciate those who support and value you: Say thank you and say it a lot! Recognize those who do great work & give praise where it’s due.

UNHAPPY? Have faith and CHANGE your circumstances."

Kimberly definition of success.

energyhill is grateful to have Kimberly on the team, as her input and participation have contributed to the agency's growth. A lover of country music and all things healthy, Kimberly also enjoys spending time with her family and friends, volunteering, and golfing.

Shara Maxwell, Classic Jazz and Blues Singer

Shara was raised musically by her mother (adept in piano, clarinet and accordion) who encouraged the young songbird to experiment in the world of melodies. With her mom's support, Shara demonstrated a passion for jazz music at a young age. In college she studied with professor Karen Sala in Southern Illinois, moving on to Chicago with iconic pianist and performer Ruth Allyn. She continued studying with Karen Saren and Los Angeles vocal and performance coach Stephen Memel, “the science of switching on.”

"Determination never betrays you."

Shara's outlook on life.

Along with gracing the stages of Chicago’s hot spots, Shara has also collaborated and performed with Chicago’s finest. Her repertoire includes a long list of respected artists such as Dave Green, Lloyd Wilson, Willie Pickens, Bob Solone, Dave Gordon, Mark Burnell, Joel Barry, and Rob Amster. But it does not stop there, she has also collaborated with John Bany, Dennis Luxion, Hans Luchs, Brian O’Hearn, Steve Ramsdell, Charlie Braun, Jim Cox, Phil Gratteau and Samuel Jewell, Eric Schneider, Alejandro Urzagaste, Joe Policastro, Dennis Luxion, Jo Ann Daugherty and Jon Deitemyer.

Prior to her main-stage days, Shara sung background vocals for the Indie Rock band Sister Machinegun. This contributed to her breakthrough credits, thus opening up for Stanley Jordan and Fareed Haque. Currently, she performs in jazz venues in the Chicago area. With weekly and monthly shows, Shara is one of the few contemporary artists who keep jazz and blues music alive. Check out her calendar and be on the lookout for her next shows.

Outstanding Women Making History

energyhill is proud to work and partner with so many talented women. It has been a privilege to highlight them during Women's History Month and recognize their work. Finally, it is important to know that as women we find our value not from diminishing that of men's, but through our hard work, resilience, and tenacity. Here's to strong and outstanding women, we see you!

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