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Northern California reaches out to UC Berkeley

Thursday, March 1, 2012  
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NEW Northern California members took the Network’s message of gender diversity in cpg/retail to the University of California at Berkeley, offering students insights into developing networking skills.

During the outreach, Feb. 8, 2012 at the UC-Berkeley Haas School of Business, industry leaders shared their own career experiences and offered tips on landing a job. Panelists included Joya Gray, supply chain team leader for Clorox Corp.; Kaj Johnson, green chef for Method Products; Linda Nordgren, vice president and general manager, homecare and general merchandise for Safeway Inc.; and Jenn Paragallo, director of business innovation for Revolution Foods. Diane Giansante, vice president of headquarter customer marketing, category management and sales strategy at Del Monte, moderated the event.

NEW Northern California committee members worked with Ed Free of the UC-Berkeley Career Counseling Center to plan the event. "In prior years we’ve worked with graduate student groups to organize and had about 35 attendees,” noted Carol Chiang, field sales finance manager for Clorox. "This year we chose to expand the pool of invitees to include undergraduate students and reached out to the career counseling centers for graduate and undergraduate programs. With Ed’s help communicating with 30 student organizations, the RSVP count increased to 122 students with an excellent turnout of very engaged young people.”

Other NEW Northern California officers and committee members attended a formal networking session with the students. They included: Lori Proctor, retail supply leader for Procter & Gamble; Debbie Rookstool, director of learning and leadership development for Safeway; Julie Oxner, category development account executive and in-house resource manager for Procter & Gamble’s Safeway Team; Laura Hudock, customer operations manager for Kimberly-Clark Corporation; Alice Chan, senior key account manager for Frito-Lay North America; Karin DeBoer, national account manager of the Safeway Team for Clif Bar & Company; Liem Le, client director of the beverage alcohol team for Nielsen;  Tracey Matchett, director of sales for HIP Digital; and Sarah Ciccarello, vice president of customer marketing for Clif Bar.

"I’m pleased to be part of NEW and the college outreach team,” Chiang said. "It’s a great way to give back.”

The students, too, gave the outreach initiative high marks. "The content was incredibly helpful,” said Vicky Chen. "As a business student, there is so much pressure to go into accounting, banking and consulting. I am soglad I attended this event because it showed me that my career opportunities are limitless and that it is only a matter of finding the right fit."

Business student Marie Seredkina said the event offered "an amazing opportunity to learn from the unique stories of professional women. I was truly empowered by the energy and enthusiasm seen throughout their successful career paths, as well as by their wisdom in managing work-life balance. The networking part was a great chance to introduce yourself to the leaders of the world-known organizations and to get an insider perspective on the culture of the companies.”

(From left) NEW Northern California members Kaj Johnson,
Carol Chiang and Alice Chan networked with students.

NEW Northern California members (back row, from left) Liam Le, Diane Giasante, Alice Chan, Lori Proctor, Debbie Rookstool, Karen DeBoer and Carol Chiang joined (front row, from left) Laura Hudock, Sara Ciccarello, Linda Nordgren, Julie Oxner and Tracey Matchett at the UC-Berkeley college outreach event.

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