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Our Chapter’s In Transition!

July 16, 2018

As her term ends, our estimable chapter chair Barbara Alpern is passing the baton to two new co-chairs — MaryLou Floyd and Phyllis Meissel.  They don’t think small! “TTN will be 20 years old in 2020.  That’s quite a milestone for an organization that grew from a germ of an idea in a Manhattan living room.  Now we’ve grown into a chapter of approximately 700 exceptional, vital women. This is the perfect time to plan for TTN’s next evolution,” Phyllis says.  “There’s a buzz already!  Wonderful initiatives are being planned, and an exciting array of programs and events is in the works.”

“Over the next two years,” MaryLou explains, “our aim is grow our chapter, enhance our members’ experience, and increase TTN’s visibility in the New York community — and we’re so pleased with the support we’re getting for our vision.  We look forward to working with everyone as we navigate our chapter’s next transition phase.  And Phyllis and I want everyone to have fun along the way!”

Both women are very active TTNers, fulfilling multiple leadership roles.  Phyllis chairs our chapter’s Strategic Partnership/Sponsorship Committee, MaryLou chairs the Marketing & Communications Committee, and both serve on the Steering, Strategic Planning, and Festival Committees.  They’ve also added richness to TTN’s special interest groups:  MaryLou co-founded our Civic Action group, Phyllis co-founded TravelMates, and together, they created TTN’s Mind Your Business Please group.  Whew! And they’re just getting started.

A seamless transition

Appreciating the responsibility of representing nearly 700 smart, active, accomplished New York women, Phyllis and MaryLou expressed a hearty thank you to Barbara Alpern for chairing our chapter over the last two years. 

“Barbara really worked hard for us,” MaryLou says.  “She participated in many groups and events, contributed her project management skills to help us run more smoothly, and she personally recruited many new members."

“We’re delighted she will stay on as a very active past-Chair and as the new Chair of the Caring Collaborative,” Phyllis points out. “Thank you, Barbara, for all you’ve done!" That kind of commitment is essential for TTN. 

“We’re a member-run organization,” Phyllis notes, “and our women have terrific skills.  We’re really lucky that many of them enjoy keeping those skills sharp by giving our chapter their time, expertise, and ideas.  We hope even more members will volunteer to help with events and programs, and to serve on committees. We need you and we welcome you!”

“Members make everything happen,” MaryLou adds.  “From the Caring Collaborative to museum tours, mingles, topical discussions, workshops, peer groups and special interest groups — member volunteers are essential. 

And our monthly newsletters, weekly event calendars, website and Facebook updates are all the result of members working behind the scenes.  So are our partnerships with other organizations and business sponsorships.  This is what women supporting women looks like .” The co-chairs agree that’s a key reason they’re excited about their new roles — to which they bring impressive professional experience.
 
MaryLou Floyd's lively career encompasses all aspects of television and film production, global promotions, and internet marketing for corporate giants including ATT, IBM, and British Telecom.  Her film and video work has earned numerous prestigious awards, including for the nationally broadcast documentary “Carry The Fire”, which she executive produced.

In the world of brand advertising and marketing, she managed more than 50 campaigns and event sponsorships, promoting AT&T’s support for arts at institutions including MOMA and the Met in New York, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Steppenwolf Theater in Chicago, the Almeida Theater in London, and Cirque du Soleil.

MaryLou was also early to the internet, leading the team that launched att.com.  She later became General Manager of ibm.com, which was consistently rated one of the top ten business sites during her tenure at the company.  For British Telecom, she managed a sponsored webcast series with CNBC that featured well-known business leaders.

An experienced speaker on interactive marketing, she has been frequently quoted in publications including Newsweek, AdWeek, Advertising Age and Wired.

MaryLou is currently working on her own marketing startup, authors a blog, and enjoys traveling with her husband, a psychologist.  She’s also returned to her second love: videography, recently producing several videos for The Transition Network and is editing another that documents her adopted daughter’s reunion with her birth family in Russia — her daughter being her first love. 
 
Phyllis Meissel's path to entrepreneurial and managerial excellence covers two continents and multiple specialty areas. 

Currently, she’s the semi-retired CEO/President of Vysym Corporation, which she co-founded to offer interactive telephone banking systems-based solutions to credit unions.  At its peak, the company had 60 employees, multiple business alliances, and 100+ financial institution clients nationwide.  She also co-founded Vista InterMedia Corporation, a publisher of proprietary electronic content for the WHO and WTO branches of the US government and other legal/regulatory organizations.

In Brussels, she created a publishing division for a British-owned international advertising and print consultancy, and working with the heads of the American Chamber of Commerce and the Conference Board in Europe, she also founded an enduring international professional women’s support group.

In Boston, she brought to market a first-of-its-kind series of web-based education and certification programs for financial brokers, and provided a technology consulting firm with high-level marketing strategies.

Education has been a theme, too.  As a young teacher, she authored curricula and a reading program for an educational publisher.  Years later, she served on a Steering Committee of the Stamford CT public schools.  Today, she enjoys mentoring young professionals and recently advised a new start-up.

Phyllis is the proud mother of two children who inherited her international perspective.  Her son is the CIO of a large private equity firm in London, and her daughter, a scuba-diving adventure traveler, teaches English at an international school in China.

Get involved!

MaryLou and Phyllis are good reminders that the more engaged we are, the more we get out of our memberships. 

”We hope every member will consider contributing or taking on a leadership role.  That’s what helps our chapter evolve and grow, and makes the TTN experience more rewarding for all our members,” they agree. We’re listening, and we’re looking forward to a dynamic TTN with our new chairs.  We’re excited to see what’s next!