Co-Founder, The Second Shift
I co-founded The Second Shift because I support working-women, and I believe the modern workplace has to be flexible, adaptable and accommodating. I learned this the hard way– from my own personal experience. Like many women in our network, my career path has been long and circuitous. I discovered firsthand that when it comes to building a professional life, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.
For the better part of a decade, I worked as a television producer/booker and on-air reporter for outlets including Good Morning America, News 12 The Bronx and Plum TV. As a side project, I started a clothing line called Mayer Studio based on my passion for vintage caftans. Then, in 2009, my first son was born and, all of a sudden, the reality of my new life as a mother didn’t fit into the structure of my career. I realized what I wanted from my career had changed and I needed to figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up.
My second son was born two years later and that’s when I had an epiphany: women need a way to engage or re-engage in the workforce that provides them meaningful, well-paying, flexible jobs. So I launched The Second Shift with my friend and business partner Gina Hadley. I could not be more excited about the company and the movement we have started. As all women know, we are the best at effective, creative efficiency and our skills should not be sidelined because, for whatever reason, we don’t work a traditional full time job.
Describe a moment that could’ve broken you, but didn’t. How did you get past the struggle?
There are many moments that can break you in life. I can’t just think of one because there are too many times when a particular moment in life seemed overwhelmingly out of control or filled with dread and despair. I get past things because I am a person who doesn’t dwell on the past; I move forward. Also, I am pathologically optimistic and I am (for good or bad depending on the moment) naturally uncomfortable being unhappy so I move onward and toward a baseline of brightness and positivity.
If you could go back in time and give yourself one piece of advice, what would it be?
When I was younger I kept running into professional roadblocks and it was super frustrating because I wasn’t getting where I wanted to go. In retrospect, I don’t think I was confident in myself or daring enough in my approach. I would say to my younger self not to be afraid to be the strongest, most powerful version of yourself. Your job is not to make people happy or comfortable. Trust in the universe.
Who’s your biggest inspiration and why?
I think we are in a really inspiring time right now. The women on the forefront of so many feminist movements from reproductive rights to running for office to the students fighting for gun control and pay equity. There is so much happening all over the place and I am just happy to be taking part in my own small way in the present social/political environment by trying to help women and businesses make lasting change.
If you could create a slogan for your life, what would it be?
To steal from my spirit animal Auntie Mame “life is a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death!”
How do you define your purpose & mission in life?
Do good; be kind; listen; say yes; be intentional in your actions; don’t waste a minute.