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Philadelphia Chapter STEERING Committee

Fatima Class - Chair

Fatima is retired following a more than 30 year career in Information Technology in the pharmaceutical, Computer sciences and Manufacturing markets. The last 13 years at GSK directing global infrastructure and hosting services.  Fatima lives in Downingtown with her husband, Bob, has 4 grown children and 2 grand children.  She spends her time with family, friends and, most of all, the 2 grandchildren.   She loves to travel, read, walk and bake and enjoys planning community events and activities. Until recently, she was busy with transition and multiple health projects.

Marion Blow - Events

Marion’s professional background included over 30 years as a CPA serving in senior level finance roles within the banking industry.  Now retired, Marion has been expanding her community participation through her volunteer work. She joined TTN in 2016 and currently serves on the Chapter Steering Committee and as the Events Committee Chairperson.  Outside of TTN, Marion serves as Board Member and Treasurer of Great Dames, Inc., a dynamic and diverse community of women who are inspired to create positive impact. In addition, Marion is active in local politics. 

Marion lives in the Queen Village section of Philadelphia with her husband and, in her free time, enjoys running, biking and spending time with her daughter and granddaughter.

Anita Brazill - Secretary

Anita Brazill stepped away from her career in healthcare business development in 2020 to pursue other interests and opportunities in the greater Philadelphia area.  Most recently she was Senior Vice President at the Pennsylvania Clinically Integrated Network in Harrisburg.

Throughout her career Anita was recognized for her communication skills, leadership, customer relationships, and strategic thinking.  She holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Marywood University. More recently, she has taken graduate courses in the Master of Public Health program at The Thomas Jefferson University School of Population Health, and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.

She is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) and the National Association for Healthcare Quality (NAHQ).  Anita also completed the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce “Business on Board” program, which supports excellence in non-profit board governance.

She and her husband, Terrence, live in the Society Hill neighborhood with their Labradoodle Chloe and Anne Marie, the cat.  Their 4 children are grown and working in the tri-state area.

Jean Brubaker – Events

After starting her career as a professional cellist, Jean went on to work as an administrator (public relations and marketing) for various arts organizations in New York, Washington and Baltimore.  She came to Philadelphia in 1986 to work as Director of Marketing for The Philadelphia Orchestra followed by fundraising and marketing in The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia's Division of Oncology.  She also is a photographer.  Currently Jean works as a guide for The Philadelphia Museum of Art.  Her free time is devoted to her college-aged son, Alexander, dog Alberto and to biking and other athletic adventures.

Carol Cunningham - Giving Circle

Carol grew up in the Lake District in England and has studied in UK, France and the US.
Carol is a Global Leadership Consultant in cross-cultural communications. She is President of the Cunningham Consulting which focuses on supporting global growth through understanding the intricacies and impact of culture and cultural differences. For 25 years she has provided consulting, training, and coaching services to global companies. 

She has worked extensively with non-profits over the last 20 years. She is the current chair of the TTN Giving Circle and President of the Women’s Initiative of the Gambia (WIG). WIG helps women in rural village communities learn skills to generate a sustainable income. In addition, she is the Co-founder, with her daughter Kathryn, of Power Up Gambia which provides solar energy to hospitals.

Marcia Goldstein - Transition Peer Groups

Marcia has retired from a career as a School Social Worker, primarily supporting Middle and High School students facing emotional, behavioral, learning, and physical challenges. She has also devoted time to working with academically talented minority youth through A Better Chance in Lower Merion.

Currently she volunteers with Journey’s Way as a peer leader running groups for senior citizens to help prevent isolation and depression. Having retired, and moving to the city, Marcia is living through transitions while helping women in all types of transitions connect and develop communities through Peer Groups.
 
In her free time Marcia stays connected with family, seeks out fun cultural activities and lectures, loves to read, walk, do yoga, and to bike and kayak at the shore. 

Lorraine Gordon - Treasurer

Lorraine is a former pharmaceutical sales representative with over 25 years experience, most recently with GlaxoSmithKline.  Lorraine is Treasurer of the Philadelphia Chapter and Co-chairperson of The Foodie Group.

Lorraine is the Outreach Liaison at Penn’s Abramson Cancer Center's  Communication & Education Department for the numerous Patient Cancer Conferences they sponsor.  In addition, in 2007 she established the Roger A. Gordon Melanoma Fund at HUP in memory of her late husband in order to enhance awareness of skin cancer to the general public.

 Lorraine also enjoys spending time with her friends and family, walking, reading, concerts, volunteering, traveling, fine wines and dining out.

Nancy Gordon - Membership

My life ended on May 16, 2010.  The Transition Network helped to re-start it.

In the 80’s I left corporate America to start a restaurant and catering business which I then sold to my employees and spent the next 4 years traveling the world.  I spent the next 25 years in the Long-Term Care and Medicare Insurance business.

I was also the President of the Dallas Chapter of Hadassah, and then, a member of the Hadassah Regional Board.  I still continue my association with the Dallas Chapter of Hadassah today.

After my husband died suddenly in 2010, I moved back to Philadelphia after 25 years in Dallas to be closer to family.

Thanks to The Transition Network, I was able to meet some incredible women, each going through their own experiences and coming together for each other.  I enjoy being a part of the Art SIG  and the Wine SIG II (which I helped to start). 

I have a new found love of painting and a ‘happy new beginning’:  Stew and I were married on March 8, 2020.

Barbara Kessler - Transition Peer Groups

Barbara is a former New Yorker who recently relocated to Philadelphia to embrace all that the city of her college years has to offer (including kids, grand kids and extended family).  Barbara’s career was a study in transition moving from running groups and coordinating community involvement programs to practicing law for 25+ years. Her last position was Vice President Employment Law and Business Ethics at Cablevision. After retiring from law, Barbara’s Second Act was to start her own business as a life and career management coach and to serve in leadership positions on not-for profit boards. She is so grateful to TTN for providing her with opportunities to get to know Philadelphia, to learn “play”, to become part of a community of interesting, dynamic women, to use her skills  and, most importantly, to develop new friends who are like family and make Philadelphia  home.

Sally Mazzarella - Special Interest Groups

Sally has a diverse background professionally and geographically.  These many life transitions  shaped  her strengths, resilience, curiosity  and kindness.   
 
Professionally, she was the Program Director of a 24/7 Intermediate Care Facility, oversaw a three quarter million annual budget, served on the Governor’s Council for the Handicapped with travel throughout Alaska.   For fifteen years she worked at the  State of Hawaii Department of Education assisting ten schools, pre-K -H.S.  through consultation with administration, teachers and parents, assessed, developed and implemented district wide workshops and  ensured compliance with special education laws.   
 
Sally chaired a sexual assault survivors board. In Hawaii she chaired the local Outdoor Circle board and served on her church board.
 
 She is a docent for the Ancient China Gallery at the UPenn Museum,  an avid reader, enjoys jazz, dabbles in art quilts, does a bit of traveling and of course, talking, laughing and sharing with friends new and old.

Chrissa Merron, M.Ed. - National Board Liaison

Chrissa’s career has spanned more than 30 years as an organization and change practitioner as consultant, leadership manager, educator and trainer.  Her background includes consulting to Fortune 100 corporations, health care and educational institutions, and government agencies. 

Long active in community and professional activities, Chrissa has served on the Boards of Directors of several associations, among them the Organization Development Network, The Philadelphia Human Resource Planning Society, and ActionAIDS.  She is currently a member of TTN’s national Board of Directors.

Chrissa appreciates the role that TTN has played in helping her through her career transition in defining the next phase of her life.  She also loves to travel, spend time with her friends and family, especially her 4 grandchildren.

Alice Milrod - Co-Chair

Alice has an MBA in Marketing and Strategic Planning and began her career in product management.  She later transitioned to become a broker; then joined a local Bank from which she retired as a Managing Director in the Trust and Investment Advisory Division. 

Alice has been a member of TTN for 5 years, serving as SIG Chair and now coordinating the Member Groups:  Caring Collaborative, The Giving Circle, Special Interest Groups, Transition Peer Groups, and Volunteer Opportunities.  She is very grateful to TTN for all the wonderful people she has met and the ability it has given her to do meaningful volunteer work.
 
In her spare time, Alice enjoys reading and doing a wide array of cultural activities in Philadelphia as well as spending time with friends and family.  She migrated from the suburbs and currently lives on Washington Square.

Pat Nelson - Volunteer Opportunities

A Chicago native, Pat settled in Philadelphia in 1984.  Before retiring in 2012, she had a 44-year career that included association management, magazine publishing, executive conference production, marketing and administration.  She now works part-time as executive director of a state trade association in the transportation industry.

Since becoming a TTN member in 2016, Pat has joined a peer group and four SIGS.  Additionally, she has coordinated TTN volunteers for MANNA and served on the Membership Committee, primarily delivering TTN Talks.  She also serves on the Old St. Joseph’s Church Eldership Steering Committee as the group’s newsletter editor and often volunteers her time to other parish activities.  Pat’s other interests include reading, cooking and travel.  She holds a B.A. from Loyola University, Chicago.

Tess Waldman - Marketing and Communications

Tess' career has spanned over 30 years in Information Technology.  While originally from Buffalo, NY, Tess moved to the Philadelphia area from Silicon Valley in 1990 and spent last 18 years of her career directing large computing infrastructure projects at GlaxoSmithKline.  Tess is retired and spends her time with TTN, doing yoga and serving on the Internal Dispute Resolution Committee of her Condominium Board.  Tess and her husband, Scott now live in Old City after leaving the suburbs. They have two grown sons, two adorable grandchildren and three cuddly granddogs.

Marsha Yankelev - Programs

After a nearly four-decade career at IBM Corporation in six locations spanning Information Technology,  sales, consulting and services, multiple management positions and Industry/Executive marketing, Marsha happily retired in 2013 to pursue her Second Act.  Marsha volunteers currently at Chester County Hospital, Chester County Volunteer English Program and other local non-profit organizations.  She serves as Vice Chair for TTN Marketing and Communications, learning new digital publishing skills and trying her hand as a journalist.  In late 2017, Marsha also became Chair of the Programs Committee and is actively working to deliver educational and personal growth programs for TTN members. 

In her free time, Marsha enjoys book club, Mah Jongg, cultural events, yoga, biking, traveling and tackling new athletic challenges.  She is devoted to her partner, Michael, their children and a large extended family.   Her motto:  Be Bold, Stay Sharp, Be Kind, Get Off the Sidelines.

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