a podcast by and about women
a podcast by and about women
Tes is a long-time blogger and foodie. For the past 10 years, she’s focused her blog and work around women’s issues. This is her long-form interview podcast. She’s lined up women activists and volunteers from around the world to tell their stories and the stories of the women they work with.
My guest today is Ewa Kuc. Ewa was born and raised in Poland. In 2007, after obtaining a master’s degree in Childhood Development with a specialization in Mass Media Education, she left Poland to become an AuPair in California, where she has settled, married and had her two daughters.
In 2012 she opened her first business, Ewa Samples Photography, recently rebranded into May The Art Be With You.
In January of 2022, Ewa joined Acton Academy, a network of independent owners of nontraditional schools and has since become the co-founder of Soaring – an Acton Academy – a non-profit private school in Morgan Hill, California.
She also hosts an annual event for kids, Children’s Business Fair, where for one day kids can become entrepreneurs and sell their products and services in person to the public.
Ewa is certified:
– Therapeutic Art Life Coach
– Life Story Coach.
She’s in the process of obtaining a license for Be Body Positive Facilitator Training and Mindfulness Life Coaching certification.
Her next life goal is to become a Body Image Life Coach for pre-teens, teens, and moms!
To learn more about Ewa:
FB for Soaring Acton Academy: https://www.facebook.com/SoaringActonAcademy
FB for Morgan Hill Children’s Business Fair: https://www.facebook.com/MHChildrensBusinessFair
FB for May The Art Be With You: https://www.facebook.com/MaytheartbewithyouEwaSamples
Today, Tes speaks with Cheryl Thomas. Cheryl is the founding Director of Global Rights for Women. Since 1993, Cheryl has worked with partners around the world to promote women’s human rights and achieve effective legal reform to end gender based violence She has participated in the drafting of new laws on violence against women and girls, and trained legal and community professionals to enforce such laws in dozens of countries. She has worked closely with the United Nations to develop model standards on legal reform on gender based violence. Cheryl has participated in numerous UN Expert Group Meetings on violence against women including in 2008 when she co-chaired the meeting to draft UN Handbook for Legislation on Violence against Women. In 2011, she was recognized by Newsweek magazine as one of 150 “Women Who Shake the World”. In 2021, the National Association of Women Lawyers (NAWL) awarded her Arabella Babb Mansfield Award for her professional achievements for women in the law.
Today, Tes talks with Kim L. Hunt. Kim is a lifelong learner who continues to hone and invest her passion in organizational leadership, Black and LGBTQ+ liberation and storytelling. For over 25 years Ms. Hunt has used her platforms in storytelling, public speaking and civic engagement to curate brave, inclusive spaces for social change. She is currently the executive director of the Pride Action Tank (PAT), a project of AIDS Foundation Chicago, where she also serves as the senior director of Policy & Advocacy Operations. PAT is a multi-issue project incubator and think tank that focuses on action that leads to improved opportunities and outcomes for LGBTQ+ people and other marginalized groups. Kim was previously the executive director of Affinity Community Services, a 25-year-old social justice organization that focuses on Black LGBTQ+ people. Prior to her work in LGBTQ+ communities, Kim’s work focused on urban planning and community and economic development. She is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including induction into the Chicago LGBT Hall of Fame and being named a Crain’s Chicago Notable LGBTQ Executive. She serves on the boards of Brave Space Alliance and One Roof Chicago, the OUT at CHM Planning Committee, the advisory boards of OTV and Wille’s Warriors. She is a founding co-host of OUTSpoken LGBTQ Storytelling, a monthly show in the Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago, and a published author. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Iowa State University, a Master’s in Urban Planning and Policy from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Master’s in Public Policy Studies from the University of Chicago. Kim lives in Chicago with her wife and has three adult children and a dog.
To learn more about Kim Hunt:
Photo credit: Rebecca Parrish of Interchange Productions
Pilar Audain – MS, MPH, Associate Director for Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation; Founder of the Wrap Your beYouty Movement
When one asks Pilar how she sees herself within the context of the community, she will immediately respond, “I am a Mother, a Sister, a Healer. I am a soldier on the front lines who creates safe spaces for my people to heal and grow.” As a Veteran of the United States Navy where she served as an Operations Specialist, her love of details and process, systems and strategy led her to the social service aspect of the human/health sciences.
For seven years Pilar worked for the Chicago Department of Public health/CDC
as an Infectious Disease Community Epidemiologist. Desiring to have a more hands on healing impact within the community, the next decade took Pilar on a magical journey through entrepreneurship; opening a healing shop featured on ABC7’s 190 North and HGTV which led to her being selected to represent Dove Soap in the international “Real Women, Real Beauty” Campaign.
Her signature Gele, or headwrap, was so inspiring to women across the globe that a movement was formed launching Gele Day, an annual celebration of Healing for women of color, which led to the launching of Pilar’s non-profit organization, Wrap Your beYOUty Movement (WYBM). Now in its 10thYear, WYBM is committed to unearthing the most innovative and creative ways to address the current state of violence in Chicago and is committed to addressing the many forms of trauma that adversely impact the south and west sides of Chicago – especially as a result of the pandemic.
Through Ancient indigenous artforms and healing practices, WYBM assists the women of the
community in their journey to better engaging their children and their men. By facilitating safe spaces for Black people to share experiences, learn and build, healing takes place in the most profound way. WYBM empowers Black people to take what they learn back to their respective families, with an emphasis on training their own children.
Pilar is also a former Arts Vendor for Chicago Public Schools, a 2021 Chicago Peace Fellow and Associate Director at Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation Greater
To learn more about Pilar Audain:
Facebook: TRinigyal Pilar Audain
IG: Pilar Sango Queen
Sara Knizhnik – Chair of the Lake County (IL) State’s Attorney’s Office’s GVPI (Gun Violence Prevention Initiative) (Re-Release)
Today, Tes talks with Sara Knizhnik. Sara holds a BA from Northwestern University and an MA from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. She served as a university-level English-as-a-Second-Language Instructor at various universities in the Chicago area for 17 years before becoming first a volunteer, part-time gun violence prevention (GVP) advocate with Moms Demand Action and then a full-time, professional GVP advocate with the Newtown Action Alliance (NAA). Sara is the Director of Community Engagement for NAA, a national gun violence prevention (GVP) organization founded in the wake of the Sandy Hook shooting in Newtown, CT in December 2012. Sara is also one of the Principals and founders of Purpose Storytellers, a clever public affairs firm dedicated to helping nonprofits get to the next level of policy influence and thought leadership. Sara spends her time, as both a professional and a volunteer, educating the public about how they can become active in the movements in support of gun violence prevention and criminal justice reform. She is also a Vernon Township Trustee. Sara lives in Vernon Hills, Illinois with her husband and two children.
To learn more about Sara Knizhnik:
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Today, Tes speaks with Joni Pursell. Joni is a native Idahoan and began her financial career in 1984. She is an Investment Advisor Representative and Registered Representative with Raymond James Financial Services, Inc.
Joni assists clients in Wealth Management Solutions, Asset Allocation, Retirement Planning, Education Planning, Insurance and Annuities and Legacy Planning. She is passionate about her clients and helping them achieve THEIR goals.
She is active in civic, business and mentoring programs throughout the Treasure Valley.
She is the past president of the Women’s Business Center.
She served on the Board of Directors for Walkin The Talk, a non-profit organization which enhances the esteem of kids and is delivered through the school system.
She is a past member of International Toastmasters
She also mentors business owners
Joni lives in Eagle, Idaho. She has 2 children, Shea and Chase and loves being grandma (‘YAYA’) to Tegan, Langlei, Mason, Mila & Madeline (They are the cutest grandkids in the world!) She loves to ride her Harley and looks forward to one day riding cross country to Maine and eating some of that famous Maine lobster. Currently she is riding a 2020 Road Glide, fulfilling this dream.
To learn more about Joni:
Broker check: http://www.finra.org.brokercheck/
To find out about Joni’s cross country ride to raise funds for Parkinson’s disease: