Columbia, MD - The Women’s Giving Circle of Howard County is pleased to announce the addition of three new members to its Advisory Board, as well as the full slate of Executive Committee and Advisory Board members for 2022.
The newly elected Advisory Board members are Laura Bacon, Kashonna Holland, and Jade McDuffie McClary, Esq.
“I am thrilled to welcome these three talented women, each of whom bring diverse experience and unique backgrounds to the Women’s Giving Circle” said Women’s Giving Circle Advisory Board Chair, Barb Van Winkle. “Each of them has deep community knowledge and a passion for philanthropy, and we are fortunate to have them by our side as we work to shape the future for women and girls in Howard County through the power of collective giving.”
We are very grateful to Jillianne Crescenzi, Mireille Grangenois, Christine Meket, and Hina Naseem, who are leaving the WGC Advisory Board after years of dedicated leadership.
The Women’s Giving Circle is building a community of philanthropists and creating a permanent legacy to address the needs of women and girls in Howard County. We bring women together to learn about issues impacting women and girls in our community, and pool our dollars to fund programs that address those issues so we can have a greater impact together than we might otherwise have alone.
Joining the WGC Advisory Board to help us meet our mission are:
Laura Bacon is the Founder and CEO of The 3rd, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, co-created, community of Women of Color entrepreneurs. The 3rd believes Women of Color need a space to build, execute, and thrive: “We need access. We need skill building. We need funding. We need collaboration. We need accountability. We need sister friends. We need a community that understands our unique gifts and the unique challenges we face.” Laura creates spaces where people can show up as the best version of themselves. Her life and work centers around community building. For 14 years, she channeled that through her work in education. She’s also worked as company manager in theaters, an artists' manager at an opera, a mentor teacher, and most recently she’s settled into her passion, entrepreneurship and community building. Her talent is in putting all the right people in a space to make something special. Laura is a member and currently serves on the WGC’s Events Committee.
“I am interested in joining the WGC because I believe that the entities we build should be as strong and as profitable as we'd like them to be, and above all, that they have a lasting impact on our communities,” said Laura.
Kashonna Holland is an engaging keynote speaker, an inspiring coach, a motivational author, and an insightful corporate trainer. Kashonna is the President & CEO of Simply Kashonna, a business built to promote BOLD, FEARLESS and COURAGEOUS living. She goes beyond surface issues to address the pink elephants that inhibit personal, professional and spiritual potential. Kashonna has helped many people walk through the ambiguity of their lives and on to defining their life’s purpose by discovering their authentic self. Both, in the corporate arena and in the nonprofit world, strategic growth and development of people have always been the focal point of her service. Corporately, she has held positions in both Human Resources, as well as the Staffing industry. Additionally, Kashonna spent years in an executive pastoral role where crisis intervention and spiritual guidance were her primary responsibilities. Understanding that leadership training and development is essential to any corporation or organization’s growth, Kashonna launched SK Leading Forward, which is dedicated to enhancing employee engagement, performance, productivity and morale. Kashonna is a member and currently serves on the WGC’s Membership & Development Committee.
“I believe in the mission and the focus of the Women's Giving Circle” said Kashonna. ” I believe in building community and I understand that it takes financial capacity to do so … providing philanthropists with a platform that supports their efforts to address the deficiency of resources many women have, is both humbling and an honor.”
Jade McDuffie McClary, Esq. is an attorney for the Home Preservation Project at the Pro Bono Resource Center of Maryland. Jade is responsible for training and mentoring volunteer lawyers to help homeowners with estate planning and homeownership loss prevention issues, such as tax sale and foreclosures. She is committed to helping low-income homeowners preserve their intergenerational wealth, which oftentimes, is the family home.
Previously, Jade practiced family law in Howard County, drafted bills for the Maryland General Assembly, and clerked for the Honorable Cathy H. Serrette in Prince George’s County. Jade has a degree in Mass Communications from University of South Carolina and a law degree from the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. She currently serves as a member of the Carey Law Alumni Board and is committed to mentoring students interested in public interest law.
Jade is a member and currently serves on the WGC’s Events Committee. From 2020 to 2021, Jade also served on the WGC’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee where she carefully analyzed the Events Committee’s practices. She is continuing her DEI work by helping the Events Committee implement the initiatives she and her team recommended.
“I am interested in joining the Advisory Board because I am passionate about WGC's mission and want to get more involved in spreading the message about collective giving to benefit our community,” said Jade.
WGC's 2022 Advisory Board:
WGC Executive Committee
Barb Van Winkle, Chair
Jennifer Bodensiek, Vice Chair
Kim Agnor, Treasurer and Governance Committee Chair
Lee Draminski, Secretary
Judy Smith, WGC Strategist
Alison Canning, Immediate Past Chair, Grants Committee Co-Chair
Melissa Curtin, Membership & Development Committee Chair
Mary Thompson, Events Committee Chair
Candace Dodson-Reed, Grants Committee Co-Chair
Lynne Schaefer - Finance Committee Chair
Buffy Beaudoin-Schwartz, Executive Director *Ex Officio
WGC Advisory Board Members
Jade McDuffie McClary
April Force Pardoe
Beverly White-Seals, CFHoCo President & CEO - Advisory Board Liaison *Ex-Officio
Dee Athey - CFHoCo Director of Grants and Community Engagement - Staff Liaison