Sometimes it takes a newcomer to get things rolling. Our fearless leader and President, Debby and her husband Michael moved to Bedford in 2011 from her native suburban Philadelphia home where she raised her two sons and enjoyed a 26 year career in independent education. She was a founding member of Impact100 Philadelphia, a collective women's giving circle, and served as Education Chair and on its Board as Membership Chair. Eager to find a way to bring a charitable giving group to the Bedford area, and inspired by the success of other Womenades, Debby founded GBW in summer 2013. Debby is a self-driven go-getter who keeps the Board on track and focused. Debby works at The Derryfield School in Manchester, NH, and enjoys tennis, winter sports, hiking, reading, traveling and, sadly, playing games on her iPad!
"I love how the Womenade model engages community. Monies are raised by the community to serve the needs within it. It's simple, powerful, and we can make a meaningful difference in the lives of others."
As Vice President of the Board, Karen comes to Womenade fully loaded with charisma and a bold approach to life. Combining these attributes with her keen sense of compassion, Karen is a key player in the successful launch of GBW. Originally from San Francisco, Karen lives in Goffstown, NH, with her husband John and their three children. She has a marketing degree from Pepperdine University and has spent the last 25 years raising her family. In addition, Karen has been active in various local organizations, which include The Derryfield School, the Greater Manchester YMCA as a former Board of Trustee member, and as a Spouse Forum member for the YPO Boston chapter. Her interests include tennis, running, travel and most recently, golf.
"I am thrilled to be a part of an organization like Womenade which gives back to the community I love and call home".
Christiane’s desire to give back and help others is what brought her to GBW. While she and her husband Peter are longtime residents of Bedford, Christiane has previously lived in the three communities GBW serves. This is one of the many reasons she is passionate about GBW’s mission. Christiane holds a Doctorate in Leadership, which she earned from Franklin Pierce University, and a Master of Education degree from Lesley University. She is the founder of Ackerson Leadership, where she works as a leadership consultant and personal development coach. Christiane is also an adjunct professor in the Organizational Leadership Department at Southern New Hampshire University. In previous years, Christiane has served on various local boards, and most recently has volunteered her time at the NH State Council on the Arts. A self-professed foodie, Christiane’s other artistic interests include: poetry, photography, and jazz music. Additionally, she enjoys reading, walking, playing golf, traveling—and loves spending time with her family, friends, and fur baby, Bentley.
“There is so much power in women gathering together to be of service to others. For me, that is the hallmark of compassion, kindness, and love. I am honored to be affiliated with an organization whose caring efforts produce an immediate impact in the communities it serves.”
Erica is thrilled to join the Greater Bedford Womenade family as it blends perfectly with her passion to support our community and those in need. Born and raised in Bedford, she graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a Bachelor of Science in Business and Marketing. Following her studies, Erica moved to Boston to work as a Merchandise Manager for online retailer Rue La La, providing designer goods for rotating premium brands. She returned to Bedford six years ago to raise her two young children with her husband, Justin. Erica currently manages VIVA Boutique, a clothing and accessory shop located inside the Executive Health & Sports Center in Manchester.
Erica is also a proud board member for the Seeds of Hope Foundation which raises funds for patient services and research for the Dartmouth Hitchcock Norris Cotton Cancer Center. In her spare time, she enjoys outdoor family activities (especially on the water!), cooking, barre, pilates, and spin.
Courtney is a natural fit for Greater Bedford Womenade! Courtney's passion is helping others. She enjoyed a fulfilling 12-year career in social services where she worked at Waypoint (formerly Child and Family Services) and Easterseals. She left the social work field a few years ago to pursue a career in real estate. Though she loves being a realtor, Courtney missed helping those in need so she joined the Greater Bedford Womenade board where she can continue to make an impact in our community.
Courtney is a lifelong resident of Bedford and has three children. When Courtney is not assisting her real estate clients, she can often be found at a sporting event for one of her three boys. Courtney also enjoys being active, spending time with family and friends and chasing around her dog Kobe.
Kathleen grew up in the Philadelphia area and attended St. Joseph's University. She started in the commercial real estate industry shortly after school. Kathleen worked for a large commercial real estate company in the Northern Virginia and the Washington, DC area and currently works as a REALTOR in southern NH with Keller Williams Realty Metropolitan.
Kathleen moved to Bedford, New Hampshire about 28 years ago and has volunteered in many community positions while raising her children. Kathleen is passionate about helping people in our local community. Having lost her husband of 25 years, she understands first-hand, the value of a community coming together to help those in need.
She is thrilled to be a part of Greater Bedford Womenade that assists those who may not have anywhere else to turn. She brings sound intuition coupled with integrity and commitment in all she does interspersed with a sense of fun and adventure.
Kathleen likes skiing, fitness, skydiving and motorcycling around the great state of New Hampshire.
GBW is so excited to welcome Gail as our treasurer. A native of Connecticut and long-time resident of Bedford, NH, Gail brings various professional and personal experience to her role. Her work at Fidelity Investments in Boston, her many volunteer experiences within the Bedford Schools, and board roles for the Pats Peak ski team and Bedford Bluffs Swim and Tennis Club make her a tremendous asset to the GBW Board! Gail is a new empty-nester and keeps herself very busy with tennis, skiing, traveling, yoga and her work at a local garden center.
"I am happy to give some of my new found free time to such a great organization."