Women of Spirit® 1997Beth Berkebile '79
Beth Berkebile of Rostraver Township is the owner of a successful restaurant and the devoted mother of four children, including a brother and sister she and her husband adopted from Russia. A 1979 alumnae of Carlow, Beth earned a degree in music. One of Beth's former teachers, Sister Grace Ann Geibel R.S.M. '61, Ph.D., Carlow's president, remembers Beth as one of her most diligent students whose beaming smile could brighten any day. Family is Beth's priority, but she still finds time to teach catechism at St. Anne Catholic Church in Rostraver and run a successful business. Beth and her brother, Tom Havadich, are co-owners of Randall's Restaurant on Route 51 in Perryopolis. It has become one of the most popular dining spots in Fayette County. To her mostly female staff of 48 employees, Beth is a positive role model who is described as both caring and down-to-earth. She offers much encouragement to her employees who are pursuing an education and makes sure they have time off to attend to important family matters.
Elizabeth Segel & Joan Brest Friedberg
More than a decade ago, two brilliant and compassionate women, Elizabeth Segel and Joan Brest Friedberg, teamed up through a mutual love for one of life's most simplest pleasures - reading to children. The resulting partnership spawned Beginning with Books, an early intervention literacy program that has become a model for the nation. Through the work of Joan and Elizabeth, thousands of western Pennsylvania families now make story time a daily part of their lives, helping to stem the epidemic of limited literacy skills among an estimated 90 million American adults. By giving parents the skills and desire to read to their children, Joan and Elizabeth are providing disadvantaged youngsters with better chances of achieving success in life. In 1986, Beginning with Books greatly expanded its outreach by teaming up with the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. Based at the Homewood library branch, Beginning with Books today has a staff of 25 and 160 volunteers, and collaborations with some 60 agencies that serve children. In addition to its Gift Book program, Beginning with Books offers: Read-Aloud Parent Clubs that bring parents together weekly to receive a free book and learn more about reading to children and their local public library; Read Together, which recruits and trains volunteers to read to children whose parents are working to improve their own literacy skills; and Project BEACON, which sends outreach workers to day care homes and public housing communities where they bring appealing children's stories and child care books. Joan and Elizabeth first met at the University of Pittsburgh where they were teaching children's literature. Joan, the mother of three and grandmother of seven, retired this fall but will continue her life's passion as a volunteer story reader. Joan has a master's and doctorate degree in English Literature from the University of Pittsburgh. She has been published in a number of journals and has collaborated with several authors on the subject of quality books and literacy. Joan's book, Super Storytime: A Guide for Caregivers, is a manual to help caregivers provide a literacy-rich environment for children. Joan has served on numerous boards and given many presentations, nationally and locally, on emergent literacy skills, children's books and family literacy. In 1995, Joan and Elizabeth were honored with a YWCA Leadership Award for their work in human and social services and in 1996 they were both added to the Pennsylvania Commission for Women Honor Roll. Elizabeth received a master's and doctorate degrees from Brandeis University. She has taught children's literature in Pitt's English Department and at Carlow University. Professional committees she has served on include: Altruistic Projects Committee of the International Reading Association, the Hans Christian Andersen Award committee connected with the U.S. Board on Books for Young People and the Library Power Advisory Committee of the Mon Valley Education Consortium. She has had several articles published on the subject of literacy and children. She also co-authored--For Reading Out Loud: A Guide to Sharing Books with Children. She's been recognized with awards from The Children's Council of Western Pennsylvania, the Western Pennsylvania Council of Teachers of English and the Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council.
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Jeanne Caliguiri is the former First Lady of Pittsburgh, who has a long history of community, social and political involvement in the city. As Director of Major Gifts for the Leukemia Society of America, Jeanne has successfully spearheaded corporate and foundation fundraising efforts for the Western Pennsylvania and West Virginia Chapter. Jeanne has received numerous awards for her community service, including the Heart Award and the Charles Turner Memorial Award. She shares responsibility for the development of Project Bundle-Up, which in conjunction with the Salvation Army, has ensured underprivileged children and senior citizens stay warm by providing them with winter coats, hats and gloves. Jeanne is also co-founder of a locally-based Girl's Hope, a home in Baden, PA for abused children. She is currently helping raise funds for another home in Clinton, Pa. In honor of her late husband and former Mayor of Pittsburgh, Jeanne founded the Richard S. Caliguiri Amyloidosis Research Fund, overseen by the Pittsburgh Foundation. In the last decade the fund has raised $800,000. She continually helps spread awareness about the Mayor's disease and reaches out to the families it affects who contact her almost daily. Jeanne remains active in politics by leading fundraising efforts for many Pennsylvania candidates and held a seat on Pennsylvania's Judicial Selection Committee. The native of Penn Hills and graduate of Penn Hills High School now resides in Squirrel Hill where she raised two sons. Jeanne serves as Trustee for the Pittsburgh Foundation and serves on the Board of Directors of many organizations including the Pittsburgh Opera, George Junior Republic, the Salvation Army and Girl's Hope.
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The Honorable Kate Ford Elliott
The Honorable Kate Ford Elliott, a pioneer in Pennsylvania's judicial system, became only the second woman to be elected to the state's Superior Court in 1989. She is a dedicated advocate of the welfare of children. More than a decade ago, as a Superior Court chief staff attorney, Kate was instrumental in bringing about "fast-tract" appeals for cases involving children. This year, Kate co-chaired a Women and Law Conference of the Pennsylvania Bar Association which addressed the impact of the judicial system on families. One of the conference's goals is to create a cost-effective and efficient judicial system that matches one judge with one family so that the courts do not become an additional burden on families already fractured by divorce, abuse or custody battles. Kate and her husband, Frederick, reside in Highland Park. Kate earned a law degree from Duquesne University while teaching children with reading disabilities. She cherishes her teaching career with the Pittsburgh Public Schools because she believes it helped her become a more sensitive judge. The best judges, Kate says, are those who have good minds and good hearts and know when to use them. Kate takes her job as a role model for an increasing number of women following in her footsteps very seriously, particularly those women in the state's Common Pleas Court. "I knew as I ran (to serve on Superior Court) and I know as I serve that it's always important for me to leave the door open for other women. And to conduct myself in a way so the door will remain open so more women will want and be able to walk through." Kate's judicial career extends well beyond the bench. She is a member of the American, Pennsylvania and Allegheny bar associations and served as chairperson for the ACBA Appellate Practice Committee. She is a charter member of the Women's Bar Association. She is a member of the Judicial Administration Division of the American Bar Association, the National Association of Women Judges, American Inn of Court, Pittsburgh Chapter, and the American Judicature Society. She is vice chair of the Pennsylvania Futures Commission. Kate also serves on the Board of Directors of Duquesne University and QED Communications, Inc.
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As a beauty shop proprietor and today, as a nationally recognized psychotherapist with a Ph.D. in education counseling, Lois has always helped people look inside themselves for the tools to overcome the problems keeping them from true happiness. In addition to her Downtown psychotherapy practice, which includes clients such as ALCOA, Lois is known nationwide for her expertise in intervention--a technique for getting a person into treatment for drug addiction and other problems by using direct confrontation. Lois was named an "outstanding" psychotherapist by her colleagues in a 1988 national survey by Town and Country magazine. Ever the dreamer who says she sometimes has to stand on her tippy toes to reach some of her dreams, Lois is most recently trying to break down prejudices by bringing together women of all creeds and races. She hopes to do this through empowerment retreats. Lois has already created a supportive and empowering network among more than 200 African-heritage women who've taken part in her annual "Just A Sistah Away" retreats. When she was 14 and living on the Northside, Lois decided what she wanted to be. She dragged her father to the now-gone Pittsburgh School of Cosmetology. Turned away because of her age, an undeterred Lois went back to the school on the day she turned 15. She was accepted and within a year had earned a state beautician license. After doing house calls for a few years, Lois opened her own shop. She was 22, and the mother of two young twins, when her husband built an addition onto their home and installed a sink to make way for Lois' Beauty Shop. For the next two decades, African-American women would come to her shop to have their hair styled. Many of them would leave her shop not only looking good on the outside but feeling great on the inside. With such a gift, Lois decided to earn a college degree and "professionalize" her good listening skills, patience and empathy. At age 34, she enrolled at the University of Pittsburgh where she eventually earned a Ph.D. and soon after opened Dabney-Smith Associates. "I've always been one who once I make up my mind, I'm determined and I don't let obstacles stand in my way. I find a way around, over and sometimes through them...And sometimes that's painful," Lois said.
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Sister Michele O'Leary
Sister Michele O'Leary, a Carlow alumna and Sister of Mercy, is world renown for her work to promote peace and economic prosperity in Northern Ireland. Sister Michele O'Leary founded the nonprofit Ireland Institute of Pittsburgh, based in downtown Pittsburgh, which since 1989 has brought together more than 600 Protestant and Catholic young adults who live, work and take classes together during a three-month stay in Pittsburgh. The goal is to send them home as friends and ensure a future free from war. The institute also makes sure these young people find jobs upon returning home by actively recruiting area businesses to invest in Northern Ireland and Ireland. This nun, who resides in the Mercy Convent on Carlow's campus, has single handedly put southwestern Pennsylvania on the map as a major contributor to the political, economic and social stability in Northern Ireland and Ireland. Her work has been recognized by President Bill Clinton, Prime Minister John Bruton of Ireland and United Kingdom Prime Minister John Major. Besides the economic opportunities provided to its graduates (85 percent are currently employed), the Institute's greatest success is manifested in the six marriages between Protestants and Catholics who met during their Pittsburgh stays. "That's the ultimate reconciliation," Sister Michele says. Four of the Institute's graduates work at a West Belfast subsidiary of Electronic Healthcare Systems, a Pittsburgh-based computer software company. The company first visited the area through the Ireland Institute's Trade Missions program and soon after became the first southwestern Pennsylvania business to invest in this Northern Ireland community plagued with unemployment. Before founding the Ireland Institute, Sister O'Leary had a successful career in the health industry. She served as the first President of the Pittsburgh Mercy Health Corporation, as well as associate director of the Health Systems Agency of Southwestern Pennsylvania, President of the Chemical People Institute and Director of the Health and Welfare Planning Association. Sister Michele began her professional career as a school supervisor, teacher and principal at St. Regis Elementary School in Oakland.
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Lucy is a devoted mother and wife who is committed to ensuring that all people have access to quality health care. Lucy married into a family whose humanitarianism is world renowned. Her husband Ian was a young boy when his mother Gwen and stepfather, the late W. Larimer Mellon, moved the family to Haiti where they built a hospital in a poverty-stricken community. They named it the Albert Schweitzer Hospital after the late doctor whose dedication to bring modern health care into Africa was Larimer's inspiration to sell his Arizona ranch and give to the hospital much of his inheritance as an heir of the Mellon oil and banking fortune. Inspired by this story of great sacrifice, Lucy decided to do her part to help keep the hospital a beacon of hope for the 200,000 people it serves. More than 40 years since its founding, the hospital has become a model for developing countries by bringing valuable jobs to the area, nearly eradicating tetanus and measles and significantly raising life expectancies. For the last several years, Lucy has organized benefit Haitian Art Sales at PPG Place Wintergarden. Proceeds from these art sales have gone to the hospital and other programs serving Haitians' health care needs. The most recent show was held in June at Carlow University's Mellon Galleries. Through her efforts, Lucy not only teaches others about Haiti's rich and beautiful culture, she also helps spread awareness about its great needs-- malnourished children make up two out of three patients who come to the Albert Schweitzer Hospital. After graduating from Vassar College, Lucy taught at an American boarding school in the Phillippines where she met her husband. She studied Middle Eastern archaeology at the American University of Beirut and later studied Public Health at the University of Pittsburgh after she and Ian settled down in Squirrel Hill to raise their four children in Lucy's childhood home. Lucy's most recent endeavor has been to serve as a board member of the Pittsburgh Schweitzer Urban Fellows. Modeled after a Boston program, it will allow students in health care professions to spend a year working with agencies in the area's underserved neighborhoods. While family has always been Lucy's priority, she continually reaches out to help those she knows only through their needs.
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Mary Molyneaux is one of Pittsburgh's leading businesswomen and a devoted mother who has persevered with grace in difficult times. In 1973, Mary was a young woman with four children when her husband William died of cancer. Determined to provide for her children, Mary quickly learned how to manage the business her husband had left her. She succeeded in carrying on her husband's legacy by expanding Molyneaux Tile and Carpet to three successful stores throughout the Greater Pittsburgh area. And even more important, she was able to provide a loving and comfortable home life for her children. Not only did Molyneaux's strong Catholic faith guide her through a great tragedy, it continues to lead her life's work. She is an inspirational speaker, owner of the religious gift store, Gifts of Joy, and a pioneering Eucharistic minister in the Diocese of Pittsburgh. In 1980 Mary became the first layperson in the Diocese to minister at St. Margaret Hospital. In 1983, she helped found the Catholic Eucharistic Ministers Program at Presbyterian University Hospital and a decade later received a Certificate of Ministry from Carlow University. At local Christian retreats, she has offered spiritual encouragement to other women facing difficult times, including those recovering from alcoholism. In 1985, Mary fulfilled a dream when she opened Gifts of Joy in Plum Boro. The gift shop has become a place for people to activate their faith through reading materials, music, videos, gifts and other religious articles. "I truly see this as a spiritual ministry and not just a business," Mary says.
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Sandra J. Mclaughlin
Sandra is the highest ranking female at Mellon Bank Corporation where she heads the Corporate Affairs Department and serves on the corporation's senior management committee. Beginning her banking career as a teller in 1958, Sandy rose to become a top bank executive by always accepting new challenges. She was the first woman, in fact, to participate in the bank's management training program. And by not adhering to a rigid set of goals, Sandy said, she has always been ready to accept new opportunities as they came along in life. Committed to excellence and a strong believer in giving back to her community, Sandy is dedicated to freely sharing her time and knowledge. She currently serves as co-chair of the YWCA's Capital Campaign. She is a trustee of Allegheny College, board member of the Grantmakers of Western Pennsylvania, and a director of the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania, and the Civic Light Opera. She also serves as an advisor to the Greater Pittsburgh Women's Center and Shelter. Sandy holds a number of titles of distinction. She received the Pioneer Award from the Organization for a New Equality; She was named a Distinguished Daughter of Pennsylvania as well as Man of the Year in Finance by Pittsburgh Vectors. Sandy is a native of Point Breeze in Pittsburgh where she still resides with her husband. She is a graduate of Allegheny College, Meadville, Pa., and the Stonier Graduate School of Banking at Rutgers University. From 1994-1996, Sandy chaired the Pastor Nominating Committee at Shadyside Presbyterian Church. "Her wisdom and patience added stature to our deliberations, and her leadership was in the tradition of dignity, commitment and service...," described fellow committee member, Mina Belle Packer Wichmann. "For many of us, the passage from Luke 12:48 spoke directly to Sandy's character: From everyone to whom much has been given, much will be required; and from the one to whom much has been entrusted, even more will be demanded. As a child of God and a servant of Christ, she is truly a Woman of Spirit to our community."
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As the founder of Allegheny General Hospital's Injury Prevention Program, Snyder oversees 14 initiatives that educate more than 150,000 children and adults each year on how to play, work and live safely. After spending a childhood moving multiple times with her entrepreneur father, Snyder settled down in Warren, PA for 17 years where she and her late husband David raised their three daughters--all accomplished artists who are the source of Snyder's greatest satisfaction. Snyder followed her mother's footsteps and began an elementary teaching career. She was a full-time mom when her children were young and later directed the Easter Seals Society in Warren. Snyder's career path took a turn upon her husband's death. She earned a master's degree in social work at the University of Pittsburgh and went back to Warren to open a family therapy and psychotherapy practice where she specialized in treating women with depression. She came back to Pittsburgh to work at AGH and for the next eight years became the "heart and soul of the trauma unit," coworkers say. Snyder instituted a grief therapy program still in existence at AGH and won the prestigious Allegheny Promise President's Award. By 1992, after nearly a decade helping families cope during the moments following tragic accidents, Snyder had seen more needless pain and suffering than most see in a lifetime. So in that year she shifted her efforts to preventing trauma, the leading cause of death among infants and those up to age 44. Snyder formed the Advisory Council on Trauma Prevention, a group of experts who met monthly to brainstorm about safety initiatives which led to the Injury Prevention Program, the only hospital-based program of its kind in the state and a model for the nation. In addition to being an innovative force in preventing injuries, Snyder continues to lecture across the country and teach medical students, hospital personnel and EMS providers on issues of bereavement and grief. In the past nine years, Snyder has presented at more than 200 conferences. She also continues to reach out to women dealing with depression.
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Dorothy A. Davis '78
Dorothy Davis is a well respected commercial litigator and corporate attorney who is devoted to community service, particularly when it comes to providing for children and promoting the arts. Davis recently became a shareholder of the law firm of Buchanan Ingersoll Professional Corporation in Pittsburgh. She has represented many national, regional and local corporations in matters involving multi-million dollar transactions. Her clients have included such corporations as The Yellow Cab Company of Pittsburgh. When not working on complex legal intricacies, Davis keeps busy with the challenges of motherhood and molding her six-year-old daughter, Katie, into what she describes as a "good citizen." Davis and her husband David A. Lynch reside in Upper St. Clair. Committed to ensuring quality childcare for families, Davis serves as Treasurer and Director of the Board of the Mt. Lebanon Extended Day Program, a nonprofit program that offers before and after-school child care. Davis is committed to the viability of the arts and ensuring their access to everyone. She has helped in fundraising for children's programming at WQED Communications and serves as a member of the New Leadership Board of the Pittsburgh Symphony. "I want people to feel that I touched their lives in a meaningful, and hopefully, enjoyable way," Dorothy says. "Our primary role is to make life better for those who come after us." Since attending high school in her native Hermitage, PA, Davis has always given of her time-- volunteering in a local hospital, on political campaigns, with the Girl Scouts of America and the Triangle Singers. Valedictorian of Carlow's class of 1978, Dorothy has remained loyal to her alma mater as a member of various committees and alumnae activities; helping organize scholarship luncheons and serving on the original task force which created Carlow's Mentor Program. In 1992, Carlow recognized Davis with a Service in Law award. Davis earned an English and psychology degree from Carlow and went on to graduate from the University of Pittsburgh Law School.
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Karen Wolk Feinstein
As the founding president of the Jewish Healthcare Foundation of Pittsburgh, Feinstein is proud of the contributions of this new entity to further health philanthropy. Under Feinstein's leadership, JHF is helping make Pittsburgh a national center for women's health research, education, and service delivery. Since its founding in 1990, it has been instrumental in funding services and educational programs for the elderly, and ensuring that children throughout western Pennsylvania receive universal, early access to preventive and remedial health, nutritional, and other services. Leading the foundation is a natural role for Karen who was raised in Squirrel Hill within a Jewish community devoted to the ideals of charity. Feinstein has made a career of promoting social justice and building strong communities. She received a Ph.D. from Brandeis University, a master's degree from Boston College and a bachelor's from Brown University. While still in college, Feinstein helped design a school desegregation plan for Rhode Island. At the onset of the nation's War on Poverty, she helped found Head Start programs, senior neighborhood centers as well as child care and family planning clinics in public housing communities in Massachusetts. She later became an associate professor of Social Planning at Boston College in Worcester, where she also served as editor of the academic publication, The Urban and Social Change Review. Upon returning to her native Squirrel Hill, she became an adjunct professor of Public Policy and Social Planning at Carnegie Mellon University and later served as senior vice president for the United Way of Allegheny County. Karen's expertise and intellect have been tapped by many organizations where she serves as a board member. These include National City Bank of Pennsylvania, Carlow University, the Allegheny Conference on Community Development, Grantmakers in Health, United Way of Allegheny County, Shadyside Hospital and the Committee to Prepare Allegheny County for the 21st Century (ComPac 21).
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