December 2018 Newsletter


Good Day,

Looking forward to seeing many of you in Chile for our Annual Retreat!

The Program Committee has been hard at work putting together a fascinating program for you. A draft program is available below.

Lastly, we all need to update our Facebook Bios or your friends might not be able to reach you (or recognize you). Bios were due by December 15.  If you have not submitted your bio, please contact Leslie ASAP. Read below for more information on how to sign up to receive a printed copy of the Face Book. Digital copies of the Face Book will be sent out in February.

If you have any updates you would like to share for future newsletters, please email me or Leslie Dube ( And don’t forget to share some of your favorite bumper sticker ideas here and we’ll feature in the upcoming Grove updates.

Best wishes for the new year!



15039333067452019 Annual Retreat: Santiago, Chile
January 17-20, 2019
The last day to register for the retreat is December 31st!

Click here to register!
The registration fee is $995.00

Please note that Room Registration is different than the Grove Program Registration, as usual. You will be required to register for both to attend the Annual Retreat.
The Chile Co-Chairs and committee have been hard at work putting together a fascinating program for our members. We are still making some final touches to the program and will send a final version in early January. Until then, click here to view a draft program! Please note, because this is a draft, all times, locations, and speakers are subject to changes.
If you are looking for a roommate for the main Retreat, or one of the pre/post trips please click here! We already have some members who are looking for a roommate!
Click here to read The New York Times’ article 36 Hours in Santiago, Chile.

Guest Registration for January 17th Dinner
If you are planning on bringing your husband or significant other to Chile with you, we are opening up our very special dinner on January 17 featuring Laurence Golborne, former Minister of Mines who led the successful rescue of 33 Trapped Miners in 2010.
If you would like your significant other to join us for this dinner, please click below to register your guest by no later than December 31, so we are able to ensure an accurate head count.
Click here to register.
The fee is $115.00.
In order to put male guests in touch with each other, please fill out the form with the phone number and email belonging to the guest so that they can do some sightseeing or meals together while we’re at the Retreat.

WCD Chile Dinner
WCD will be hosting a dinner and late afternoon session on Wednesday, January 16 in Chile. For more detail, please click here to view the invite.
If you would like to sign up for the dinner, please click here. *Please note, neither WCD nor BG can sign you up for this event.*

Packing List

  • sunscreen
  • sunhat
  • walking sandals and/or walking shoes
  • camera
  • travel adapter (Chile has two round pin sockets)
  • dollars cash (can be changed into pesos at the airport in Santiago or in downtown Pucón, though credit cards will be accepted almost everywhere)
  • refillable water bottle (not essential but better for the environment)
  • clothing in layers / warm jacket (early mornings and late evenings can be cool even in summer)
  • wind jacket (if considering doing outdoor activities)


Please donate Auction items for Adventures for the Mind Foundation (AFM)

Our Annual Retreat is approaching fast, and we’re about to reach a major milestone: $1,000,000 raised thanks to your generous support for AFM! Since AFM began the auction, we have been able to raise $935,000. The money that has been raised over the years has allowed AFM to continue to help women and girls in need across the globe! AFM funds organizations in the United States, Latin America, South America, and the Caribbean. These are organizations that are close to the hearts of members. The money that has been raised has gone to charities we have worked with in the countries we have visited, as well as your own local charities.

Won’t you make a donation and “take us over $1 million”?

It’s easy. Select something fabulous to donate, complete this quick and easy online form (submit photos and all; you can even click to get a copy of your responses sent to you). That’s it!
You’d rather print, scan and email the form and photos?  Click here.

To focus more fully on the retreat, we will do the majority of our auction online, in our new, user-friendly auction platform. If you still have not made your auction item donation, we have a few more days that we can still accept your items! So please, get them in!

In the next couple weeks, we will announce the details on how you can view and bid on the items. We have already received several exciting donations, including a weekend stay in Palm Beach; a summer weekend in Newport, Rhode Island; a fabulous stay in Napa; a stay at Casa des Artistas in Santa Fe; a week vacation at Lake Blue Ridge in the North Georgia mountains; and so much more!

Auction Spotlight
4 Passes to the Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF). Each pass encompasses the admittance of 2 people. The special weekend pass that allows the bid winners into regularly priced screenings, press screenings, the SIFF Lounge and Festival Forums on these 4 days, May 17-20, 2019. Four passes for two people each (8 people!) to this exciting Spring weekend celebration of the arts, the largest film festival in the US. Each pass is valued at $250+ (and hard to get!).


free-wallpaper-18Join us in St. Louis, Missouri for our 2019 Mini Retreat
September 12-14, 2019

Once regarded as a forgettable city in “flyover country” – St. Louis has been selected as one of WSJ’s 10 best travel destinations for 2019.
St. Louis is more than just a Gateway to the West. Known for its famous arch, St. Louis is a lively destination in its own right; full of inviting neighborhoods, stunning parks, such as the Missouri Botanical Garden, varied night life, and restaurants that draw on the bounty of surrounding farmland and rivers. With a mix of Midwestern sensibility and southern charm, St. Louis is a city looking to the future.
We will be staying at the Hilton St. Louis at the Ballpark. Offering a hot tub and fitness center, a rooftop bar and restaurant, Hilton St. Louis at the Ballpark overlooks the Gateway Arch and Busch Stadium, home of the St. Louis Cardinals. The St. Louis Gateway Arch is 1,650 feet from this fabulous hotel, while Old Courthouse is 650 feet from the property. The nearest airport is Lambert- St.Louis International Airport, 12 mi from the property.
The St. Louis committee (Laura Herring, Lauren Herring, Sharon Fiehler, and Susan Block) is already hard at work planning the event! They have already started working on their program and the exciting events they have in store for us all.

The room block is now open!
Click here to reserve your room

Guests are welcome to start booking reservations using the link or by calling 1-800-445-8667 and referencing your group code “BEL.”


PuertoRico1-ca350c9f10faPuerto Rico 2020

Our 20th anniversary retreat will be held in Puerto Rico in January 2020! More info coming soon!

Check out some of these articles on Puerto Rico:
USA Today: Hurricane Maria’s economic impact on Puerto Rico
Coastal Living: How Puerto Rico is Rebuilding After Hurricane Maria


What the Grovers and Taras Have been Up to Lately…

Tere Blanca was featured in the Florida Business Journal. Click here to read the segment.

Ramya Swaminathan’s new company, Malta, just spun out of Google X! Ramya has been doing important work in renewable energy development for a number of years, and now will continue that work as CEO of Malta, an innovative renewable energy storage company. Click here to read more.

Karen Van Bergen’s podcast on agency performance and what makes a great CEO was listed as one of the top 10 of The Echo Chamber’s most popular discussions of the year by The Holmes ReportRead more.

Sally Crawford, Connie Duckworth, Judi North, and Sandra Peterson were listed in Women Inc.’ 2018 Most Influential Corporate Directors.

-3PEA International, Inc., a vertically integrated provider of innovative prepaid card programs and processing services for corporate, consumer and government applications, has elected Joan Herman as an executive member of the Board. Click here to read more.


Films of the Month- chosen by Naomi McDougall Jones and Emily Best

Ever since Naomi first joined the Grove two and a half years ago, many of you have asked her for some kind of formalized monthly movies-by-women-to-watch vehicle. When Emily joined in Seattle and was asked the same thing, they realized the idea was too good to sit on. Here, each month, they will send you recommendations for their two favorite films of the month by a female director – one that you can watch at home and one in theaters.

The Rider
Available on: iTunes, Amazon, GooglePlay (most streaming platforms)
Director: Chloé Zhao
Starring: Brady JandreauMooneyTim Jandreau
Synopsis: After suffering a near fatal head injury, a young cowboy undertakes a search for new identity and what it means to be a man in the heartland of America.
Genre: Drama, Western
(Note from Naomi and Emily: while many of you may think that a Western isn’t really your style, please do watch this film. Chloe is an astonishing filmmaker and one who has developed a unique style of working with Native American non-actors to achieve a fictional style that feels more like documentary and gives us a window into lives and stories that truly have not been seen on film before)
IMDB link:

In Theaters
Mary, Queen of Scots
Available in theaters – check your local listings
Director: Josie Rourke
Starring: Saorsie Ronan, Margot Robbie, Guy Pierce
Synopsis: Mary Stuart’s attempt to overthrow her cousin Elizabeth I, Queen of England, finds her condemned to years of imprisonment before facing execution.
Genre: Drama, History
IMDB link:


Face Book 2019 Hard Copy Request Form

We will be printing Face Books in the upcoming weeks as well as posting a digital copy on the website.
Please click here to request a hard copy of the 2019 Face Book.


Sign Up for the 20th Anniversary Committee!

It’s hard to believe that we are already planning the 20th Anniversary celebration, but it’s that time! The 20th Anniversary will be celebrated in Puerto Rico at our Annual Retreat in January 2020.

We strongly encourage members interested in serving on this committee to let us know via the committee volunteer page on the website (Click here to visit the website).

We will start meeting soon to start planning the 20th Anniversary event and need your help! Please consider signing up for this committee.


Haven’t updated your profile on the website yet? Not sure what to do?

Watch this short video for step-by-step instructions. (NOTE:  To make the video larger – click the small “4 arrows” icon at the bottom right of the video – to the right of the HD.)


Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible’!”

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