VP, Renewables and Energy Solutions, PSE&G
Be an example of what’s possible. Be a model and an inspiration not just for the power women walking in our footsteps, but serve as an example for women regardless of where they are in their career journey. Be an example for everyone – not just women and just around issues of gender. Diversity embraces the full breadth of all people, their ideas, thoughts and perspectives…
In your opinion, what qualities make a “Power Woman”?
A Power Woman is one who achieves success in their chosen field, finds happiness and fulfillment outside of work and takes the time to nurture and mentor the next generation. Power women are not just in the executive suite. You can find power women in all professions and walks of life.
What benefits and advantages does a company with positive gender equality have over a male dominated workplace?
It’s a competitive advantage when an organization fosters a culture and an environment where everyone can be comfortable expressing themselves. An organization also benefits when it’s committed to ensuring diversity at all levels – especially diversity of thoughts, opinions and points of view. I’m proud that my company includes diversity, equity and inclusion priorities and progress against those priorities is aggressively tracked and reported to our executive leaders.
Is there one particular issue in your life you are passionate about? Something that overrides all of your objectivity?
I’m very passionate about maintaining a healthy work-life balance. I enjoy travel and spending time with my family. I encourage this in my team as well. It’s important to be well rounded and have meaningful interests and pursuits outside of the work environment.
What do you think is the number one action we as a society can take toward empowering women and gender equality? (e.g. affirmative action)? What can we do to continue to support and enhance the growth and presence of women in high profile positions?
Be an example of what’s possible. Be a model and an inspiration not just for the power women walking in our footsteps, but serve as an example for women regardless of where they are in their career journey. Be an example for everyone – not just women and just around issues of gender. Diversity embraces the full breadth of all people, their ideas, thoughts and perspectives, and a vast blend of organizational and human characteristics, experiences, needs and traditions.
Can you tell us a short story in which you encountered a block due to your gender?
When I returned to work following maternity leave, I was still nursing. Back then, there were no lactation rooms. When it was time for me to pump, I either had to go into a supply closet or outside to my car. It’s important to point out that my company wasn’t against providing accommodations to nursing mothers, it was just something the company didn’t realize it needed at the time. Happy to see times have changed and that I helped make it easier for other women.
Was there a defining moment or experience in your life that led you to where you are today? What was it?
I’ve had several, but at the top of the list are the countless times my parents encouraged me to pursue an education. Next is the motivation my husband and my children provide, pushing me toward doing new opportunities. Last, but certainly not least, is the encouragement from the many leaders and colleagues at PSEG who continue to challenge me to explore new opportunities.
Is “Education, education and education” one of the top three responsibilities of a civilized society? If not why not?
Education is important and should be pursued from both the formal and practical perspectives. Formal learning must be complemented with practical learning. It’s not enough to simply learn. We must be able to apply the things we learn in order to be effective. Additionally, education is not just what’s learned in the classroom. There are opportunities to learn in a variety of environments, and from a variety of teachers – leaders, peers and people on our teams.
If you could have someone else’s job for a day, who and what would it be? Why?
There many jobs and professions out there and many of them would be outstanding opportunities. For me, no one position stands out. I’d be excited about any job that challenges me and allows me to keep learning.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
Don’t hold yourself back is the best advice I’ve ever received. For me, that means putting yourself out there and grabbing opportunities that comes your way.
What is your favorite book (fiction or non-fiction)?
My favorite book is the novel What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty. It’s a thoughtful story of a woman who has to re-discover and reconstruct various aspects of her life after a case of amnesia that caused her to forget the past ten years of her life.
What do you most value in your friends?
I value truthfulness and flexibility in my friends. Truthfulness is pretty obvious, but for me, flexibility means being able to adapt to and accept changes. Being flexible is the first step toward being open to pursuing new and exciting opportunities.
Which trait do you find most uncomfortable in yourself? In others?
As I’ve progressed throughout my career, I’ve learned that I need to listen more. I find the same trait uncomfortable in others – especially when I’m trying to communicate and I encounter someone who doesn’t want to listen, or worse, hears only what they want to hear. I’m a work in progress. I’m not always successful, but I do my best to be mindful of this trait.
What do you consider the most over rated virtue?
Prudence is a value that’s not necessarily overrated, but it is something that should be cautiously exercised. I’ve learned in myself and seen in others that too much prudence can lead to inflexibility and a reluctance to take risks.