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Member Spotlight


I moved from Holdrege, Nebraska to Nashville, TN when I was 14.  I attended McGavock HS and loved playing the French Horn in the Band.  I went to TN Tech and then Belmont University and studied Business Information Technology.  


I joined the League to strengthen my faith by surrounding myself with women that are also loving the faith.  Community is important as well, keeping in touch with the pulse of who does what and connecting people to each other when it’s a win-win makes us all successful!  

              Connie Allison

NAME: Connie Allison

Parish: Holy Family

Job/Business/Vocation: In a rush of description, Connie’s life does seem to roll together into “vocation”. She’s on the Parish Council, she’s an usher, in the flower ministry, bocce ball league, a Eucharistic Minister and our Parliamentarian.

Her paid work life uses her law degrees (yes, plural) and centers on guiding people in big life issues. She works in estate planning, probate, charitable giving, end of life planning, custom trusts, asset retention and marital protection. The impetus – a big heart for the elderly. Find her at

Why I joined NCBWL: She has fallen in love with the mission of the NCBWL while enjoying the business networking and relationship-building. She credits the perseverance of Cora Newcomb for her membership!

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      Darcy Bomer


NAME: Darcy Bomer

Job/Business/Vocation: Proud co-owner of Cute & Comfy Shoes & Apparel

(Partnered with my wonderful daughter, Devri!)


After years of a career in IT helping people with their computers, I found myself with foot pain and in need of shoes that were cute yet comfy!  I went shopping for shoes, found a new job as well and decided to open my own shop of shoes!


2009 - The first location was 400 sq ft.

2011 - The 2nd location was 1000 sq ft.

2013 - We then expanded next door to 2000 sq ft. We added Clothes to the mix.  

2024 -  Our store moved to Grace's Plaza in Green Hills with 4800 sq ft.

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Peggy Hunt

Name: Peggy Hunt

Parish: St. Henry

Job/Business/Vocation: Administrative Assistant to The Dominican Campus for over 25 years.

What you should know about me:​ Born and raised in Nashville, she is an alumna of Overbrook Catholic School and St. Cecilia Academy.  She has two brothers, and four nephews.  Her hobbies include needlepoint and her little dachshund, Chloe.  She is a Eucharistic Minister at St. Henry. She has served on the NCBWL board as secretary twice, historian twice and hospitality chair.

Why I joined NCBWL: She joined NCBWL in 1996.  She attended several meetings as a guest.  She also attended the luncheon/fashion show and enjoyed it.  She decided that she needed to be a member, too!


NAME: Beth Reardon

Parish: St. Matthew, Franklin


Recently retired; formerly worked in local government for 33 years at city of Belle Meade as finance director and city manager.

What you should know about me: Born and raised in western New York just outside of Buffalo in a Catholic family along with 5 sisters and one brother.  I attended a small Catholic grade school and public high school, as did my husband, Dean.  I confess I did not like him very much until we got to know each other better through our parish CYO functions.  We married and moved to Tennessee in

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1977, first living in Murfreesboro for five years, then moving to Nashville. We have three children, the oldest living in Santa Barbara, CA and two in Birmingham AL.  They attended St. Henry grade school and Father Ryan and Pope John Paul II high schools. Dean and I had such fond memories of our Catholic grade school years and small, close-knit Catholic parish, that we were determined to provide our children with the same opportunities and strong foundation for life.  No regrets!

Oh, did I mention we also have two wonderful grandsons, Parker (5) and Brooks (3)? They are a delight, and it is so much fun to spoil them!


I’ve been retired for less than a year, and after working full-time for most of my adult life and raising a family, it is an adjustment to slow down and realize that life doesn’t have to adhere to deadlines and a long to-do list!  I enjoy sewing, quilting, cross stitching, reading, cooking, and gardening.  I hope to find new volunteer opportunities, especially within our Catholic network.  I just recently joined a group of women that sew tiny infant “angel baby” gowns made from donated wedding dresses that are then used by Williamson County Hospital to give to the parents of stillborn babies. If you know of someone that has a wedding gown to donate, please let me know:  


Why I joined NCBWL:

I would like to expand my opportunities for networking and volunteering with women in our diocese.  I have been so blessed and want to use my time and talents for the benefit of others in need while I have the opportunity and health to do so. I also love that this group raises money to support Catholic education for young women.

Claudia Chin

NAME: Claudia Chin

Parish: St. Ann, St. Matthew, Roamers!


My journey has involved many roles since my graduation from Florida International University (FIU) in Miami, FL with a BBA in Business Admin & International Marketing. Sales & catering, convention services in hospitality; Executive support, event management, human resources in the fashion industry; and office management and volunteer coordination in non-profits. My previous positions were at VUMC: clinical & office admin in the neurology department and lastly as an AA in patient services until 2021.


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Kim Breese
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Teresa White
Paula Antonini

I'm currently "semi-retired" (LOL) and on "sabbatical" until...

What you should know about me:​ I'm uncomfortable with being in any spotlight; I prefer being a silent server, in the back of the house. I realize God didn't call me to be comfortable so I'm stretching myself to put myself out there. Hence, one of the reasons I joined NCBWL! To meet and connect with Catholic women and to be open to God's call.

Alex and I moved to Nashville in 2012 and we're happy to call TN our home. We're parishioners of St. Matthew and of St. Ann; however, I consider us "Roaming Catholics", members of the Church "at large" as we often go to different parishes for daily Mass, church events and spiritual retreats. I'm an active member of Regnum Christi Nashville and Padre Pio Nashville. I volunteer at the Heart of Mary House (next to St. Edward) and at various non-profits. 

NAME: Kim Breese

Parish: TBD: I am in the process of selecting a parish and have enjoyed visiting quite a few churches.

Job/Business/Vocation: Healing Touch Certified Practitioner

What you should know about me:​ My journey with Healing Touch started in January 2016. Up until that point, I had a successful career in corporate America. On paper, I had it all together, but really I was miserable. I didn’t know what I was missing until my body forced me to stop and listen. There was a paradigm shift within me where I began to trust and follow what brings me joy. I discovered I feel the truest to myself when I am in service to others. 

Healing Touch is an integrative health practice where practitioners use their hands to help restore balance to the body. It’s different from massage because there is little to no pressure applied and clients are fully clothed. The non-invasive techniques allow a practitioner’s hands to clear, energize and balance the human energy system to facilitate health and well-being.

Healing Touch can:

  • Reduce pain

  • Accelerate postoperative recovery

  • Improve mobility after surgery

  • Decrease anxiety, tension, and stress

  • Provide symptom relief during chemotherapy and radiation therapy

  • Reduce the effects of trauma, chronic pain

  • Lead to shortened hospital stays

  • Deepen spiritual connection

  • Ease the dying process

I practice at The Happy Hour in 12South and would like to extend 10% off a first time session for NCBWL members with the code: Kim10


Why I joined NCBWL: In 2022, I was diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer at the age of 42. I lead a healthy lifestyle and this diagnosis changed me at a profound level. As I moved through the experience I found my faith deepening and was reminded how God shows up every day. It’s what my mom and I affectionately coined ‘God Winks.’ I am now 100% cancer free and it doesn’t escape me that God had a hand in it.

Through a series of God Winks with Tricia Casa Santa and Sandra MacSweeney I was guided to NCBWL. To be amongst amazing business women who enjoy being of service and lean on their faith, I felt called home. My Catholic upbringing was a beautiful gift of community and I joined because it sparked that same feeling. Plus, I love Italian food so it is a win, win.

Teresa White

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NAME:  Teresa Marie White

Parish: St. Henry


Retired after serving 32 years in the

United States Military. In 2016, I received

my bachelor degree at Trevecca Nazarene

University. After retiring from the military,

I continued to work with veterans at the

Nashville Veterans Administration

Business Office. Currently, I am retired!

What you should know about me:​ 

While originally from Davenport, Iowa,

I have considered Nashville my home since relocating here in 1986. Serving in the military was especially rewarding because I have always been passionate about helping others and will continue to do so.


My husband and I enjoy social events and spending time with our grandchildren. My son attended St. Henry and Father Ryan and has been married since 2017. He has a beautiful wife and 3 amazing children. They are the joy of my life!  Most of my free time is spent with them - Evy, 4 years old, Delroy, 2 years old, and Lilah, 3 months old.  Evy looks forward to seeing her “Baci.”  My parents were born in Poland, and I wanted to continue my polish heritage by having my grandchildren call me “Baci (pronounced Botchie), grandma in Polish.


Daily, I enjoy exercising and taking walks in my neighborhood. I try to walk at least 2 miles a day, sometimes longer, and swimming at the Bellevue YMCA. I also enjoy cooking and entertaining and most of all spending quality time with my wonderful loving husband, Richard.


Why I joined NCBWL: A current member, Lynda Evjen invited me and a very dear friend of mine to attend a NCBWL dinner meeting. While attending my first meeting, I was welcomed by so many inspiring women and I knew then I wanted to join and become a member of the NCBWL.

Parish: St. Matthew

Job/Business/Vocation: Integrative Nutrition Health Coach and doTERRA Wellness Advocate

What you should know about me:​

I have had a long career in Direct Selling, starting as a Tupperware Lady in 1970. Built the #1 Team in the country and went on to become a Vice President. Having majored in Russian at the University of Kentucky, I was thrilled to move to St. Petersburg, Russia to launch Tupperware in Russia in 1997.

I’ve always had an interest in things international, so was Director of International Sales for both CUTCO Cutlery, and Creative Memories. I then joined The Body Shop (British company) and launched their direct selling business here in the US.

After my mom died at the age of 55, I developed a passion for healthy living, so in 2008 I enrolled in the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York and became a Health Coach. In 2014 I discovered doTERRA Essential Oils and added that to my repertoire as the oils align perfectly with my philosophy of eating ‘real, not processed food.’  Essential oils are pure extracts of plants and have amazing health benefits.

Now, at the age of 79, I continue to help people expand their HEALTHSPAN, so it can match their LIFESPAN. It’s incredibly fulfilling to help people feel their best and be confident they are doing everything they can to have good energy and live the life of their dreams.

Bill and I have been married 57 years and have 3 children, 7 grandchildren.

Why I joined NCBWL:

I was drawn to NCBWL to connect with like-minded women of faith and make new friends as we just moved to the Nashville area in 2017. I knew at that first dinner it was a good fit.

Paula Antonini

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Mimi Speciale
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Here is a picture of me at St. Peter’s Square with 5 women from the Catholic Women’s League of England. They “adopted” me because I traveled alone.

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Parish:  Christ the King

Job/Business/Vocation: Freshly retired from Metro Nashville Public Schools as Admin. Of Finance and Payroll at Granbery Elementary School in Brentwood

What you should know about me: I grew up in Nashville, went to St. Edward’s Grade School and Father Ryan High School. My Catholic roots run deep; both my parents were Catholic and went to Catholic schools in Evansville, IN. When my husband, Frank Mondelli and I were married (1976), we practically lived next door to Christ the King Church.

We have three children, Rachel, Lauren & Frank, Jr., and of course they went to Christ the King School and Father Ryan High School. We are blessed and proud that our children have continued Catholic education for their children. Five of the seven grandchildren will be at Christ the King School this year, and one will be a freshman at Father Ryan High School, one more little guy coming up! Catholic education has always been important to me and keeping up with all the Catholic connections.

All that being said. I am looking forward to retirement and being able to spend more time with my husband and family. I love traveling, reading, gardening and walking.

Why I joined: I joined NCBWL many years ago when I was the Alumni and Event Director at Father Ryan High School. Sadly, I didn’t follow through with going to the meetings when I left FRHS, but I’m back and excited to be so.


Mary (Mimi) Speciale


We are delighted to introduce Mimi for our July Spotlight.

Official name may be Mary, but she invites us to call her Mimi. She retired from HCA Healthcare after 37 years of service, working as the Corporate VP of Project Management and Education for the Performance Improvement and Case Management departments.

She is originally from Portland, Maine and attended Catholic school in elementary grades K-6 and also attended a Catholic college in Nashua, NH.  She has lived in Franklin, TN for 26 years,   moving here in 1997 for HCA.  St. Philip is her parish. She has also lived in TX and CA.  She is lucky to have two wonderful kids, Stevie and Kimmy, who both have their own families, living in AL and GA. I also have 4 grandchildren (3 girls and 1 boy).  My husband, Chris, passed away last year after a long battle with chronic diseases. 

She has a wide array of hobbies; can you share your interests in gardening, running, hiking, skiing, traveling, or spending time with grandkids?


She recently traveled to Spain as a retirement celebration and saw the 3rd largest cathedral in Europe in Seville. Her group also visited several other beautiful Catholic churches and cathedrals across southern Spain – many were originally Muslim mosques that were converted to cathedrals in the 15th century.  The religious paintings and sculptures in these churches were magnificent!  The picture shows her in the Botanical Garden in Malaga, Spain.

She joined NCBWL to meet new people, volunteer to work on important projects, and make valuable contributions to the Catholic community.  She stepped up immediately for the June Habitat Build.  She learned about the League from neighbor Trish Cronin and who is very keen on the mission and value to metro Nashville.

Diana Miller

Parish: Assumption

Job/Business/Vocation: Retired Social Security Technical Expert


What You Should Know About Me:

I worked for the Federal Government for 35 years to support my family. I have 5 children and 14 grandchildren. I was able to breast feed all of my children until they were at least 6 months old even while working.

I married a poet and have been married 55 years. However, I taught my husband how to cook and that led him to think that he could brew his own beer and he turned that hobby into a paying job. He retired as the brew master from Blackstone and his retirement pension is all the beer that he wants.

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Patricia Smith

My husband has been a big influence on my faith.  Although I had been baptized in the Congregational Church and married in the Presbyterian Church and my husband was raised as a Lutheran, we received instruction in the Anglican (or Episcopal) Church and were both received into that faith. We then received instruction in the Catholic faith and have been Catholic since 1976. We pray the Angelus, Lauds, Vespers and Compline from the Divine Office every day as well as the Rosary.

Why I joined NCBWL:

Nancy Poll asked me to join NCBWL in 1998 and now I have been a member for 25 years.  At first, I was reluctant to join NCBWL because I was a government employee and not a businesswoman.  However, I have really enjoyed meeting women of all ages who are talented in many different occupations.

Patricia M. Smith

Her Voice Works


St. Matthew Church


Long-time communications liaison for government and non-profit work; evolved to self-employed voice talent.

What you should know about me:

What you should know about me:​ incorrigibly curious. I review scripts for medical instructions, historical documentaries, elder care, gaming scenarios, vacation spots, and all manner of communications. I don't choose to record and submit in all those categories, but it's opened my mind to our wide world. This is airing on BizTV in Dallas/Houston.


My interest in voice work began as a lector at Holy Name Parish. Preparing to proclaim the Word for others invited closer review and enhanced appreciation for the gift of our faith. As I train lectors now, I remind them the congregants have performed many tasks before arriving: waking, eating, dressing, organizing others, driving, parking! So many actions to be accomplished before settling in the pew. We need to respect that potentially scattered attention span and bring our best presentation as a ministry.

Why I joined NCBWL:

I want to enjoy the enthusiasm that comes from women focused on serving the Lord through their communities. 

Anne Sawasky

Anne Sawasky

Investor Coach

Paul Winkler, Inc.


Our Lady of the Lake


I help people Relax About Money® by educating them about investing, mistakes people make and what academic science tells us is the best way to invest, and help them become confident investors. I was a practicing attorney in Wisconsin for many years, first working for a major insurance company and then in my own law firm, working with Fortune 500 banks, businesses and families, and advising business owners on the valuation and sale of their businesses.  Currently, I work at Paul Winkler Inc., a fiduciary investment advisory firm assisting families and business owners by educating them and helping them invest confidently. I spearheaded a program to educate and empower independent women to be financially successful through workshops, personal financial education and planning. I appear monthly on The Investor Coaching Show, Saturdays 3-6 p.m. on WWTN FM Nashville, and our podcast.

What you should know about me:

I am a cradle Catholic married to my best friend, Dave, and we have a daughter and two sons. I have always been active in my church and volunteering, and I currently serve on the board for We Speak Color, Home | WSC Inc. ( to help people learn sustainable employment. I head the prayer ministry for our Nashville Magnificat women’s ministry and am working to bring healing ministry to our parish community.        

Why I joined NCBWL:

I wanted to get to know and network with other professional Catholic women, and I enjoy the various talks and teachings at the meetings. This is a wonderful, welcoming group of very accomplished women and even better, they share my Catholic faith! I joined NCBWL because I felt I needed a group of Catholic women to help me live my faith in a fuller way.

Janine Moore
Cindy Zwickel
Marianne Ahlgren
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Kim Teter
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Sharon Alderman

Janine Moore

League Secretary

NCBWL Board Member 2021-2023



St. Philip's Catholic Church


I am happily retired from the world of paid work for 30 years, having been a community volunteer for this entire time.  It allowed me to contribute, but to be present to raise our kids.  

What you should know about me:

I currently serve as a library trustee for Williamson County Public Library, a Meals on Wheels deliverer, a CGS teacher for 3- to 5-year-olds at St. Philip Catholic Church, the food coordinator for St. Philip Habitat Builds, and leader of a book club at Brookdale Retirement home.


I have three kids and two grandsons and one husband who refuses to retire.  I enjoy traveling, cooking, traveling and spreading joy.

Why I joined NCBWL:

I joined NCBWL because I felt I needed a group of Catholic women to help me live my faith in a fuller way.

Cindy Zwickel


NCBWL Board Member 2021-2023


Holy Family Catholic Church


Retired. Former Senior HR Professional, Employee Development Manager

What you should know about me:

I retired to have more time with my family. My husband, Jim, and I have 3 children and 5 grandchildren. Being involved in their lives is a great joy for us. My mother, 1 sister and 1 brother also live nearby so we can maintain the close relationships we have experienced throughout our lives. I also enjoy Pilates and gardening.

Why I joined NCBWL:

During most of my career, I focused on helping people develop their strengths and set goals.  NCBWL's mission to help young Catholic women experience a quality education seemed to be a good fit for my strengths and goals. Growing in my faith with outstanding Catholic women has been an incredible bonus: to share our faith with others, support other Catholic women in our community, and collaborate with other organizations that align with our mission.

Marianne Ahlgren

Manager of Operations

Catholic Charities, Diocese of Nashville




Cathedral of the Incarnation


Manager of Operations at Catholic Charities, Diocese of Nashville  

What you should know about me:

My husband, Brad, and I are originally from Illinois.  We have lived in Nashville for almost five years now – and we love it!  Between us, we have five children – his two grown daughters live in Illinois; Hailey is a medical assistant and Paige is a vet technician.  My oldest, Annie, completed her Masters in Digital Marketing and works for The Melting Pot headquartered in Tampa, FL.  Sarah just graduated from Vanderbilt Law School and is moving to DC to work for the Department of Homeland Security.  David just finished his Criminal Justice degree at MTSU and is trying to get into the DC Secret Service.

Why I joined NCBWL:

Ever since moving to Nashville, I kept seeing notices in the church bulletin announcing an upcoming NCBWL meeting and while I had always desired to attend one and check it out, I never did.  Well a little over two years ago I began working for Catholic Charities at the Catholic Pastoral Center (CPC), where we share the building with the Diocese.  Over that time, I feel that my faith has deepened - possibly because of daily Mass offered at the CPC; or maybe it’s the monthly confession that is available here too; or even the fact that there are five chapels in this building – all ways that have helped me grow in my Catholic faith.  Looking back, I believe, all of that led me to wanting to meet other Catholic faith-based women and NCBWL was the answer!  

Kim Teter

Author and Educator




Christ the King, but a frequent visitor of St. Matthew


I have a background in teaching and education. Several years ago, my love of history and research led me to write a historical novel for Young Adult readers. Isabella's Libretto is about the fascinating all-female orchestra that was directed by composer Antonio Vivaldi in Venice in the early 1700's. (Did you know Vivaldi, composer of The Four Seasons, was a Catholic priest?) Currently, I'm revising a middle grade novel about Italian POWs in Texas in 1945, also historical fiction, and I'll begin querying agents soon. I'm active in the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, the Historical Novel Society, and a Catholic writers' group. My website is

What you should know about me:

I've been married to my husband, Clay, for 45 years, and we have three grown children who have blessed us with four grandchildren, ranging in age from 2 to 8. Clay and I are both Texas natives, but with his career in retail, we have lived in several states. We moved to the Nashville area 18 years ago and hope we don't move again.

Clay and I love to travel (er, I may love it a little more than he does--ha!), and we've been fortunate to go on pilgrimages to Italy and the Holy Lands. Since I had my bum hip replaced a few months ago, I have this fantasy that one day I'll walk the Camino de Santiago...or maybe just a portion thereof. I learned to play bridge a few years ago--invited to lessons by NCBWL friends--and in addition to my Friday afternoon group, I play bridge in the Cheekwood league with Sandra Szejner.

Why I joined NCBWL:

About twelve years ago I was working in the Admissions Department of Aquinas College when I learned that my young Aquinas friend Joan Watson was presenting a program about Rome to an organization called NCBWL. I wanted to hear Joan's talk, so I attended as a guest. I was welcomed with sincere warmth and knew immediately I had found my people: I wanted to belong to this great group that socialized while deepening spiritual roots and supporting scholarships for Catholic high school girls. I have loved meeting Catholic women from all over this area of Tennessee, and have made dear friends in this organization. 


Sharon Alderman

Past-President (2011-2013) and Treasurer


Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Springfield


I am a retired educator. I taught for one year in Ohio before moving to Midland, Michigan. There I spent 34 years both as a high school mathematics teacher and as a junior high school assistant principal. Upon moving to Nashville, I worked for Regions Bank for 9 years, took off a few years and then went back for 2 more years. I am now comfortably re-re-retired! 

I received both my bachelors and masters degrees from the University of Toledo. A past member of Alpha Omicron Pi sorority, I belong to the Nashville alumni chapter.

What you should know about me:

I have been blessed with a son and two daughters and my husband, Bud, has one son. Together we have 5 grandchildren. Several of the grandchildren are quite active in sports so we travel regularly to see them play. When not traveling I enjoy volunteering at church, participating in the Nashville Sports Council, gardening, reading, sewing and refinishing old furniture.  

Why I joined NCBWL:

Moving to Nashville in 2004 I had the pleasure of meeting and working with Tricia Casa Santa at the Music City Bowl.  She invited me to join her for a couple of NCBWL meetings.  Being new to the area, it was a wonderful way for me to meet and connect with other Catholic women, so I was eager to be a part of the group.  Since joining in 2005, I have been fortunate to have served as treasurer and president.  It has been exciting to see our organization evolve having such vibrant women of all ages and backgrounds be a part. 

Michelle Beauvais
Donna Adams
Patricia Cronin
Patricia Helland
Lauren Barca
Courtney Conklin
Faye Knochenmus
Cora Newcomb Spotlight
Beverly Quinn
Claudia Weber
Cheryl Pryor
Paula Antonini
Shelley Heile
Lisa O-Neill-Sullivan
Nikki Moreland
Lynne Warne
Patricia Vance
Teri Gordon
Jennifer Baron
Kim Hoover
Connie Allison
Lisa Link
Karen McCoy
Cindy Church
Catherine Herro
Lily Ayala Berlyn
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Michelle Beauvais


St. Henry Catholic Church


Architect at EOA

What you should know about me:

I am originally from Louisiana, where most of my family still lives except my sister and her family. I moved to Nashville after graduating from Louisiana State University. I worked at EOA Architects when I first moved here and was privileged to work on the Pinnacle Tower downtown, among other projects, as a recent graduate. I spent about 8 years singing with the Metro Nashville Chorus in my free time, which I joined about a year after moving here. After the recession hit in 2008, I landed a job with a small architecture firm. I spent about 11 years at that firm doing mostly residential and small commercial projects. While there, I had the privilege of working on a few projects with the Sisters of St. Cecilia, including the Bethany Retreat House and an addition/renovation to the Mater Dei House on the Motherhouse campus. I became a licensed architect in 2017 after passing my final licensure exam. In late 2019 I returned to EOA and have been working as a project architect on several exciting commercial and multi-family residential projects.

Why I joined NCBWL:

I was first brought to NCBWL by Cora Newcomb. I joined to meet people and network with other women in business. It’s incredible to have a Catholic women’s organization that is about, and supportive of, working women. I also love being able to support the education of young women through our annual scholarship.


Donna Adams

“One of the things I love about NCBWL is that the definition of “working" includes community activism and volunteer opportunities within greater Nashville. Volunteerism is respected.”



Holy Family Catholic Church


For the 24 years that I have lived in Brentwood, I have volunteered with the following local organizations: Monroe Carroll Children’s Hospital, High Hopes Developmental Preschool and Therapy Center, the United Way, the Toqueville Society, the Youth Life Learning Center- West Project, and the American Heart Association Circle of Red. For 14 years, I have also taught CCD at Holy Family.

What you should know about me:

I am most proud of the 10 years I was on the Board of Directors of High Hopes Developmental Preschool and Therapy Center, where I participated in raising $3.5 million for the new school and clinic that I helped design and build in Franklin. In 2014, I was awarded the Heart of High Hopes award for Volunteer of the Year and upon completion of the building, had a therapy treatment room named in my honor. I have used my Occupational Therapy degree to work with children and adults in many volunteer settings. At the Children’s Hospital, I assisted in running playrooms for sick children that were hospitalized.


Besides loving my 2 grandchildren, I have a plenty of time to devote to traveling with my husband of 43 years, Kent. My hobbies are Pilates, cooking, golf and Book Club. 

Why I joined NCBWL:

I joined NCBWL because it appealed to me with all the fundraising and spiritual growth opportunities! My friend Debbie Lassiter, who I met in the Holy Family Cursillo group, introduced me to NCBWL. As soon as I went to the first meeting, I was so impressed. These gals had smarts and sass!


I went to work right away on the Pearls of Wisdom event with Sandra Szejner.  I have worked on the Auction Committee and the Spiritual Enrichment. 

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Patricia "Trish" Cronin


St. Philip Catholic Church in Franklin                                  May 2024 update


Executive Director for the Children’s Kindness Network, a nonprofit dedicated to instilling values of kindness in young children through our beloved mascot "Moozie" the kind cow.  

What you should know about me:

Catholic schools helped form me from first grade through college graduation. I continue to be blessed in infinite ways including by amazing family members (starting with my husband and our two sons) and many dear friends (in our Franklin neighborhood, in northeast states from where they often visit).  I strive to learn and grow every day.


Following retirement from a career in banking and financial services/technology consulting, I volunteer more actively around my passions: kindness, children and faith. Besides my "Moozie" work, I volunteer with the Greater Nashville Regional Council (GNRC) primarily with seniors and the disabled, and with St. Philips Church and several community partners.  I also very much enjoy continuing to mentor business-field colleagues.


In baseball season, my husband and I frequently travel to Major League stadiums, meeting up with family and friends, to watch our younger son pitch.  

Why I joined NCBWL:

I enjoy meeting and getting to know wonderful faith-oriented professional women and championing their pursuits. I also love the NCBWL opportunities to grow personally and to support Catholic school education which I highly value.

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Patricia Helland




St. Ignatius of Antioch


Owner - Rhea Lana's of Green Hills

Rhea Lana's is a nationally recognized, award-winning franchise with over 100 franchises, in 24 states and counting. We provide upscale children's consignment events 2 times (Spring and Fall) a year! I will have my 3rd event this spring and in the short time Rhea Lana's has been in Nashville, we have been recognized as the Rookie Franchise of the Year and we received an Honorable Mention in Nashville Parent Magazine's 2021 Best of Parenting Awards!

What you should know about me:

I became an entrepreneur a little over a year ago when I purchased the Rhea Lana’s of Green Hills franchise. Prior to that, I worked at Vanderbilt where I also earned a PhD in Leadership and Policy Studies.  Most importantly, I am a mom to one daughter, Maggie.

Why I joined NCBWL:

I spent many years working in higher education and I am looking to reconnect with the Nashville business community. NCBWL is a perfect fit for my business which really appeals to mom and grandmothers. I am looking for inspiration from other women, and the opportunity to connect to this community of Catholic women with partnerships and business opportunities.


Lauren Barca


Cathedral of the Incarnation


Vice President - UnitedHealthcare of Tennessee

What you should know about me:

I love living in downtown Nashville with my husband, daughter (12th grade at St. Cecilia), and 2 rescue dogs.

Why I joined NCBWL:

I joined NCBWL to fellowship with other women. I have been inspired by hearing the journeys and passions of those in the group!

Lauren Barca joined NCBWL in May of 2021 and has been a very active member of the league.​ She actively supports Nashville Diaper Connection and advocates for the league's involvement in this cause. Lauren will also be one of the co-chairs for the 2023 Pearls of Wisdom Fundraiser, together with her good friend Courtney Conklin.


Courtney Conklin

Realtor with Weichert, Realtors - The Andrews Group



Cathedral of the Incarnation


Realtor with Weichert, Realtors - The Andrews Group

What you should know about me:

I was a helicopter pilot in the Army for seven years before I got married. Now, when I'm not working as a realtor, I love to practice my French, play tennis and surf.

My husband Mark and I have been married for 10 years. He is an Apache pilot in the Army and is currently getting his PhD in Political Science at Vanderbilt. We have 2 daughters, Juliette (9) and Bernadette (6), currently attending Overbrook. We love to volunteer at their school and in the community, and most recently helping at Covid vaccination sites.

Why I joined NCBWL:

I joined NCBWL to meet new people, support other women in their business ventures, and network.


Faye Knochenmus

Hospitality Chair 


Smith County Catholic Community

This new church was established August 2021.


Independent AmWay Distributor


Stampin Up Demonstrator

What you should know about me:

Retired Lt. Col. US Army Nurse Corps

I am very active in my community with the Right to Life Smith County, American Legion Post 57, and FCE in Grant Tennessee.  Aside from being an avid reader, I am very active and enjoy daily physical activities to stay healthy. I enjoy swimming (45 min. of laps daily) and walking over 2 miles daily. On the creative end, I create greeting cards and donate them to Cards for Soldiers and other organizations. I am also a Stampin Up Demonstrator.

Why I joined NCBWL:

I joined to meet other women in the local community whose mission is to be engaged in the community by showing others the love of Christ.

Cora Newcomb

Communications Director



St. Henry Catholic Church


I wear many hats and have held various roles in broadcast, print and web.

I'm a business owner and writer when I'm not managing our household composed of a wonderful husband of 18 years and four coon hounds.


What you should know about me:

I enjoy meeting, introducing and connecting people. Every person has a story to tell and I love to hear their stories so they would feel included, accepted, appreciated and loved. I hate for people to feel alone and isolated in this world.

I have found neuroscience to be fascinating. My current podcast addiction is the Huberman Lab.

Why I joined NCBWL:

After attending a meeting as a guest in July of 2015, I was encouraged to join a committee to help with the Pearls of Wisdom fundraiser. I totally enjoyed getting to know the wonderful ladies of the league. As a business owner, I felt I needed to connect with women that support, uplift and empower other women; and NCBWL was the perfect haven to meet amazing women with the same strong Catholic Christian faith and shared values.


Beverly Quinn

Owner/CEO of Tanzu Skincare


Immaculate Conception

Clarksville, TN


TANZU, an all-natural handmade skincare line. Our mission is to provide quality products and service and to give God the glory. 


What you should know about me:

First, I do not enjoy talking about myself. I let my actions speak for me and allow others to decide how they experience me. Those who feel they know me best have described me as creative, hardworking, forth right, tenacious and loyal; one who faces life challenges with grace and courage. I would agree. However, above all else I am a child of God, who in the evening of my life enjoys learning about my Lord and Savior. I enjoy learning, hiking, gardening and quilting.

Why I joined NCBWL:

Honestly speaking, initially it was to be able to participate in the Vendor Fair. It soon became a desire to be in service.


Claudia Weber



St. Ignatius of Antioch


Case Manager/Short Term Assistance

Catholic Charities of TN

Degrees in Social Work and Early Childhood Education

What you should know about me:

I am not ready for retirement! For the past 18 months I have been immersed in disaster relief and have a deeper sense of how our lives can change in seconds.


Nashville has become an adopted home town over the past 24 years since moving here to join the Nashville Predators' organization. My son teaches at Indiana University and we have a orange tabby named Max!

Why I joined NCBWL:

I was invited years ago by Tricia Casa Santa who still inspires me to connect more with our community.  I am also the beneficiary of Catholic education through high school and credit my parents' example of faithfulness and fun in helping with our group's activities. The work of Catholic Charities can also be aligned with our mission 


Cheryl Pryor

Spiritual Life Chair


Holy Rosary


Currently DRE at Holy Rosary Catholic Church and soon to be IT trainer at VUMC. 


Primary vocations:

Marriage and Motherhood

What you should know about me:

I will soon be moving to a new industry and position at Vanderbilt while pursuing a master's degree. I am married with 10-year-old twins. My Catholic faith is extremely important to me and my favorite church activity is teaching RCIA. When I am not doing church things, I am traveling with my family (also not during a pandemic) and knitting or crocheting.

Why I joined NCBWL:

I joined NCBWL to meet other business minded Catholic women to get to know some ladies outside of my parish circle.

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Paula Antonini

"I love helping people improve their health, feel their best and live the life of their dreams by making lasting changes in what they eat as well as supporting their health through the power and scientifically proven benefits of using essential oils every day."

Paula Antonini’s mother died at the age of 55 from a stroke, and her mom had also died of a stroke. So, she set out trying to figure out how not to do that! “After I retired from the corporate world at 64, I went to the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York to learn the real deal about food and health. From there I became a Certified Health Coach in 2008. In 2014 I discovered essential oils and realized they were a good fit with my philosophy of eating real food and using natural solutions. So, I've been educating people about living a healthy lifestyle through food and oils for 5 1/2 years now,” Paula said.

Paula works as a Platinum Wellness Advocate with doTERRA, an essential oils company and works with people all over the world.

“I have a geographically diverse team in the US, England, Australia and several other countries. I love helping people improve their health, feel their best and live the life of their dreams by making lasting changes in what they eat as well as supporting their health through the power and scientifically proven benefits of using essential oils every day. My goal is to achieve the rank of Diamond in 2020.”

Paula was a vendor at the 2019 NCBWL Business Expo last year and felt the welcoming spirit of the organization. She is new to the Nashville area and joined the league to meet new like-minded people and expand her connections and new friends.  “I like the energy of the group and have already made some great friends!”

She said she has gained clients among the league membership and looks forward to referrals from the networking opportunities provided by NCBWL.

“I'd love the opportunity to do an educational presentation about the benefits of essential oils for the group,” she said of her future goals as a member. “I love doing classes - in homes and as Lunch 'n Learns for companies.”

Paula grew up in Bowling Green, KY. She attended St. Joseph School for 12 years. She graduated from the University of Kentucky with a major in Russian Studies and earned a master’s degree from Western Kentucky in French/Education. She has lived in many places, including St. Petersburg, Russia for 2 years, where she launched the Tupperware business in the 90's.

“It was a wonderful opportunity to use my Russian,” she said. “I've been married to Bill for 54 years. We have 3 children: Mark and his family live here in Bellevue, which is why we relocated here. Gini and her family live in Southern California. Eric and family live in Lake Oswego, Oregon. We have 7 grandchildren - two in college now!”

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Shelley Heile

Shelley Heile was a stay-at-home mom at the time when she decided to start her own business with Thirty One Gifts, a monogram, embroidery and gifts company.


“I was initially just thinking Thirty One Gifts looked fun, but I was skeptical because it was direct sales. I had a lot of common misconceptions,” Shelley explained. “I realized very quickly -- ten years ago -- that this “fun” with Thirty One Gifts, could be something more. I rose to the highest level of Leadership in Thirty One in 2011 and have been honored in many ways. I have represented Thirty-One Gifts on Capitol Hill with the Direct Selling Association, asked numerous times to facilitate conferences and seminars, earned many gifts! Thirty-One was the perfect vehicle to use my skills from my prior professional life and life with more flexibility as a Mom.  


Besides helping other women reach their goals such as earning income or just having time with girlfriends, Shelley now has her own mobile boutique and gift shop.


“I love it!  My immediate future goals are always centered around how to make life better for other women and myself! We can’t pour from an empty cup! I set a goal each year to be completely finished with Christmas shopping by December 10th (wrapping, too) so that I can really be present during the season of Advent. There are so many wonderful ways to celebrate the season. It makes the wait for Christmas a joy and not a hassle. That’s my immediate goal to help others do the same.”


Shelley was invited to a vendor event at St. Henry where she heard about the mission of NCWBL.


“I just knew it was right up my alley! I volunteer at St. Matthew with the Religious Ed program (middle school 7th and 8th grade Group Leader) and I have two sons who have been/currently educated through Catholic Schools. To be able to assist in fundraising for girls is always an honor,” she said. “I feel like anything that encourages me to grow as a Catholic woman is a win/win in business and life.”


Shelley grew up in a small town in Kentucky and converted to Catholicism.


“It seemed God just kept putting Catholic friends and roommates into my life at every turn,” she said. “I am married to cradle Catholic, Doug (20 years!) and we’ve been at St. Matthew Church for 17 years. We have two sons. Grant is 20 (Father Ryan ’18) and Griffin is 13 (attends Christ the King) and Molly, the best ten-year-old Golden Retriever on the planet.”

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Lisa O'Neill-Sullivan

Lisa O’Neill-Sullivan returns for her second term as the second Vice President of the Nashville Catholic Business Women’s League overseeing the programs at monthly meetings. 

Lisa is a veterinarian in small animal practice at Animal Care Center of Brentwood, which she co-owns with her husband. She runs her own business as an independent distributor for Neora anti-aging skin care and wellness. 

“I've wanted to be a veterinarian since I was 8 years old,” Lisa said of her career calling. “I was attracted to Neora by my own results as a customer, and by the positive culture of the company. For 35 years I have enjoyed serving my veterinary patients and their owners. In a similar way, I serve my Neora clients by helping them to solve problems.”

Lisa was born in Philadelphia and grew up in Atlanta. She moved to Nashville as she was starting college.  “My husband and I met in vet school, and after several years as associates in other practices, opened our practice together in 1991,” Lisa said. The couple have three children. “Our oldest is in inventory allocation at Tractor Supply's headquarters in Brentwood, one is heading to vet school in the fall, and our youngest is a junior at UT.”

Of course, as veterinarians, they also have pets: two dogs and three cats. As you can imagine, Lisa stays very business. She said her faith keeps her grounded. “I try to ask for God's help daily in my work,” she said. “When I remember to bring Jesus into what I am doing, things always seem to work out better!”

“I joined NCBWL several years ago when I started my Neora business. It was so different from my veterinary career, I realized I needed to get out of my shell and network with other women in business,” she explained. “What I have found in NCBWL is a wonderful support group of women who uplift me and are a constant example of service to others.”

Lisa works to book speakers for monthly NCBWL meetings in her role as second vice president. She said she enjoys looking for interesting speakers and programs to the meetings, and “serving in any other way that I can.”

She has booked Michele Johnson, co-founder and Executive Director of the Tennessee Justice Center, as the July guest speaker; Sister Mary Agnes, Aquinas College president, as the August speaker; and Bishop Mark Spalding as the October speaker. 

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Nikki Moreland

You work in a small business, tell us about your business and what drew you to your career?

Chantilly Belle is a family owned small business. We are three generations of female entrepreneurs with over 80 years of history in the fashion industry. Our mission is to bring the quality craftsmanship and artistry we’ve developed as an atelier into the retail fashion experience. These are the different types of clothing we offer (from everyday to your special day, there’s a Chantilly Belle creation for everyone): 

  • Virage – Tailored wardrobe essentials structured with ease and the feel of casual luxury

  • Ensembles – Multi-functional dresses and separates perfect for styling groups such as bridesmaids, dance teams and show choirs

  • Prestige – Fashion that makes memories of life’s special occasions from prom and pageants to galas and weddings


Why did you join NCBWL?
I learned about the organization through a friend’s posts on Facebook. I did my research and realized that I wanted to be part of this fellowship and great cause. We need more women empowering women and helping young girls prepare for the future through education and spiritual mentorship. 

What excites you about the growing business community in Nashville?
Nashville is becoming a melting pot of cultures and professions. We definitely see the impact of big companies that are moving headquarters and opening up locations in Middle Tennessee. But what really excites me is the wealth of support that communities are giving to small businesses. Not a day goes by that I see a friend post about their new shop or restaurant. These are people taking chances to make their dreams come true. 

How do you want to be a role model for the young women for whom we provide scholarships?
I have been blessed enough to go to Catholic school from kindergarten through college. But I didn’t really appreciate that until I was out on my own figuring out what adulthood is all about. I want to be there for these young women. If they ever want to learn from someone else’s challenges, I’m happy to share. I want my experiences to teach others because maybe, just maybe, that will make navigating this crazy stressful world a bit easier. 

Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Manila, which is in the Philippines. The population is over 90% Catholic. It’s an archipelago in south east Asia and its location makes it a hub for traveling between east and west. Because of that, I was able to grow up around people from different ethnicities and backgrounds. 

Can you share with us about your family, education and any other experiences you would like to share.
I come from a tight-knit family. I have 3 sisters, 2 daughters and 2 nieces. My dad and husband have been surrounded by women! Although I live far away from my parents and sisters now, I’m lucky that I get to talk to them often and text even more. 



Lynne Warne

Lynne spent 30 years in various corporate communications roles: PR, marketing communications, and employee relations for such companies as Honeywell in Minneapolis and Vought Aircraft/Triumph Group in both Dallas and Nashville.

“Though I enjoyed working in the corporate world, I left it to oversee the construction of our third Nothing Bundt Cakes bakery,” Lynne explained. “My husband managed the build-out of our bakeries in Nashville and Franklin, and he needed me to take the lead in Murfreesboro.”

“I never envisioned being an entrepreneur when I was growing up; it’s something we decided to do when my husband was in between jobs and needed to make a living for our family,” she said. “What a blessing! We created and co-own four local Burger Republic restaurants (TripAdvisor named it a top 10 burger restaurant in the nation last year based on customer reviews!) along with the three bakeries. Most of my days are spent marketing and responding to emails. You’d be shocked by all of the donation requests!”


Lynne, who is full of life and arrives at most NCBWL leagues with one of her delicious Nothing Bundt Cakes in tow, said her life motto is “Live while you’re alive!” When dealing with customers in her bakeries and restaurants she tries to always have an attitude of gratitude.


Lynne grew up on a farm in southern Minnesota, the fourth of six children. Her 91-year-old father, who doesn’t take any medications and drives himself to church each week, is still living in the same farmhouse where she grew up.


“The land was homesteaded by my ancestors who came to America after the potato famine occurred in Ireland,” she said. “My dad grew soy beans, field corn, sweet corn and peas. He also raised pigs. I spent my summers pulling weeds and picking up rocks out of the fields...dreaming of a day when I could work in air-conditioned comfort.”


Lynne and her husband Jeff married in 1986 and have two children: Jack (26) and Katie (24), both of whom live and work in the Los Angeles area. Jack works for a firm that specializes in voice recordings, primarily for the video gaming industry. Lynne said he’s currently working on the new Elder Scrolls game. Katie works for a firm that excels in geo-targeted advertising. “Yup, those annoying pop-up ads,” Lynne added.


Lynne and Jeff lived in Minneapolis until a transfer took them to Dallas in 1999. They moved to Nashville in 2006 for Jeff’s job and they plan to stay. Lynne joined NCBWL about a year and a half ago after reading an article about the group in The Tennessee Register.

“As an entrepreneur, I need to connect with various women’s groups to network and find support,” said the St. Henry parishioner. “This organization is a perfect fit! I love how we rally around each other and the causes that are near and dear to our hearts.”


She is looking forward to getting to know her responsibilities and duties as president-elect.


“I want to serve with integrity and do everything that’s expected of me,” she said. “I’m also looking forward to getting to know all of the board members better.”

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Patricia Vance

Patricia Vance is a broker for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Woodmont Realty and the newly elected recording secretary for the NCBWL.


“I believe my success lies in the fact that I listen to what my clients’ needs and wants are, and I treat people the way I want to be treated – with honesty and respect,” Patricia said of her successful career working with buyers and sellers in Middle Tennessee. “I want to be their trusted advisor for life.”


Patricia grew up in Nashville, thus has seen a lot of change in and around the city over the years.


“I love it,” she said of watching her hometown become the “It City.” “There is so much to see and do. One can find anything that fits his/her interests, either in or not far from the city.”


Patricia joined NCBWL a few years ago for several reasons.


“I always enjoy meeting and getting to know people. I like to learn about them and what they do. I also wanted to do something to help my faith journey grow,” she said. “I have been so blessed with those I have met and gotten to know thus far.”


Patricia is married to “a wonderfully faith-filled man” with whom she has two children.


“We have a son, 22, who loves Ninja fitness and loves working with youth. We also have a daughter, 24, who teaches preschool special education and truly wants to see them grow. I’m thankful for how they bless me.” 

Patricia said she is looking forward to serving on the board and learning and growing her faith further through this service.


“I also look forward to offering my time to help the growth of this wonderful community and the outreach ministries we are supporting.”

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Teri Hasenour Gordon

Teri Hasenour Gordon will take over as president of the Nashville Catholic Business Women’s League in April after serving as vice president for two years. She is a practicing attorney, is married and the mother of two grown sons and is working on her MBA but finds time to devote energy and creativity to the NCBWL.

“I saw an announcement in the St. Philip church bulletin,” Gordon said of how she found out about NCBWL. “I wanted to join an organization of like-minded women and couldn’t imagine a more compatible group than Catholic business women. I jumped right in and never looked back.”

Teri grew up in Louisville, Kentucky, as the youngest child in a restaurant family, which served people in Louisville for more than 50 years. She is much younger than her siblings – she has five nieces ranging from age 61 to43. Her brother died in 2017 at the age of 80 and her sister still lives in Louisville. She broke out of the family restaurant business when she worked for the local police department one summer in high school.

“I worked for a special division of the local police department,” she said. “There was an attorney who was a consultant and he would have me type abstracts of cases that were of interest to the department. I found it very interesting and would read all I could about the cases. This piqued my interest in the law.”


After graduating from Vanderbilt in 1977 with a business administration and history degree and failing to find jobs that piqued her interest in the same way, she enrolled in the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law. She graduated in 1982 and is admitted to practice before the state courts of Kentucky and Tennessee, the U.S. District Court, the U.S. Bankruptcy Courts and the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. Her solo practice focuses on creditor’s rights as she has extensive experience in financial matters as a former attorney for Sovran Bank, Nations Bank and the U.S. Small Business Administration.

“My clients are mostly small businesses, financial institutions and individuals who loan money,” she explained. “I also write wills and powers of attorney and help start-ups organize and prepare business agreements for them.”

Never content to sit still, she is currently “slowly” working on her MBA.

“My future goal is to retire from the practice of law and possibly teach or work part time for a nonprofit or business. I don’t like to be idle.”

She taught as an adjunct professor of Business Law and Communications at Aquinas College. She is also a member-at-large on the Tennessee Economic Council for Women. Serving as president of NCBWL will also keep her busy for the next two years.

“This has been a wonderful group for which to be associated. The women are warm, genuine and filled with the Holy Spirit,” Teri said. “The group is interested in supporting each other but also looks to the world beyond with a charitable heart.  I have met many caring individuals who I am proud to call friends and can’t imagine my life without them.”

“The events carry out the mission of the group. They are fun and entertaining but have a business and charitable purpose. My favorite event is the visit to the convents at Christmas time. I realize how blessed we are as Catholics to have such dedicated women in our midst.”

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Jennifer Vedral-Baron

Jennifer Vedral-Baron is the Health System Director at the VA’s Tennessee Valley Healthcare System. As CEO, she is responsible for the management and administration of 4300 employees working in two hospitals and 19 community-based sites of care across Middle Tennessee and southern Kentucky.


“Currently, we serve over 100,000 Veterans with over 1.5 million clinical encounters each year,” Vedral-Baron said of the system. “This is my second career and thus I expect I will finish out my work life in this position. I am honored with the opportunity to do so.”


Jennifer began her career in the Navy as a Nurse Corps officer (Ensign) in 1986 after finishing her BSN program.


“My dad was a 30-year Navy Veteran and was such an inspiration to me. He and my mom raised all four of us to be thankful for the freedoms we enjoy, to love our country and to somehow always be a positive influence on our communities,” she said. “In the image of my dad, I wanted to be a patriot, serve my country and be able to make a difference.” 


Jennifer is the fourth child and youngest in her Navy family. Her father retired when she was five when the family was stationed in Jacksonville, FL, which became home for her.  After joining the Navy, she moved to Long Beach, CA for her first Naval tour. There she met her husband, also a Naval officer serving on the USS Missouri, and married in 1989. Her husband eventually separated from the Navy and became a Merchant Marine officer, serving as ship captain for several merchant marine vessels across the globe.  He retired from the Merchant Marine in 2013 and now works as a Maritime Transportation Officer with the Navy’s Military Sealift Command in Norfolk, VA. He travels home to Arrington on weekends.  Her daughter, Kelsey, was born in 1990 and had the great opportunity to live all over and learn new cultures while meeting new friends.


“She grew up to be a very adventurous young woman able to meet friends easily,” she said. “After graduating from college, she worked as a Professional Staff member on the U.S. House Veteran’s Affairs Committee (HVAC) where she impacted several legislative actions improving the lives of Veterans. Currently, she serves as the Military and Veteran Legislative Assistant for Senator James Lankford (R-OK). I am so very proud of her accomplishments.”


Jennifer met Kathleen Pohlid in her professional role as our government legal counsel. While getting to know each other, they both realized they shared the Catholic faith. Kathleen invited Jennifer to NCBWL.


“I then did my research and realized this is a great opportunity to meet other professional women (especially given I am new to the area) who share my values,” she said. “I’ve enjoyed the meetings/dinners thus far –disappointed I missed the big fund-raising event in September as I was out of town—next year, I do hope, eventually my work schedule will be less frenetic and I can participate more actively.”


Jennifer also has two English bulldogs, Maximus and Maggie, who are her best friends!

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Kim Hoover

Member Kim Hoover was inspired to earn her history degree at her first NCBWL meeting. The rest, as they say, is history.

“I attended my first NCBWL meeting at the invitation of Peggy Hunt in 2008.  The speaker was Steve McCarthy, history professor at Aquinas College.  He mentioned during his talk that Aquinas was offering a history degree starting in the fall,” Kim said remembering her first visit to NCBWL. “I started that fall and finished my bachelor’s degree at Aquinas in 2012 with a History major, and a Business Administration minor. Teri Gordon was my Business Law professor!”

“So NCBWL played a part in me finishing my bachelor’s degree.  Fast forward 9 years to 2017, and Debbie Lassiter invited me to a meeting. I had worked with Debbie on campus. Debbie, Peggy and Teri were women I think a lot of, so I joined.”

Kim is the database administrator at The Dominican Campus where she manages the data lists of donors, the alums, parents, grandparents and friends of the campus.  She helped at last year’s luncheon and also helps Debbie with things like mail-merge and other database tasks.

“It was very rewarding to know that some young women would be able to attend Catholic high school because of our hard work,” Kim said.

Kim grew up in Hazel Park Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. Her husband, Rick, was transferred to Knoxville, Tennessee in 1990. His family is from Overton County, TN, so moving to Tennessee was coming home to Rick.  The family moved to Franklin in 1992 and has lived there since.  Kim has four grown children, three sons and a daughter.  They all live in the area.  She also has Sam, her 19-month-old grandson.  She is a devoted Predators fan and attends St. Philip.

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Connie Allison

Connie Allison grew up in Nashville, taught at St. Pius X and St. Ann before becoming a full-time, homeschooling mom. She majored in elementary education at Vanderbilt, and later earned her law degree (J.D) from Nashville School of Law.


"I wish I could say that I was drawn to law for lofty reasons, but as my children grew, I realized I needed another challenge in my life, and I chose law school over other graduate schools," Allison said. "I am extremely fortunate that I truly love my work so much, because my decision wasn’t really that well thought out!"

"I began my legal career in litigation (courtroom work), with a primary focus in family law.  I have always loved the feeling of being able to rescue people in unhappy situations, help parents have more time with their kids, and help prevent my clients from being taken advantage of,' she said. "However, litigation and especially family law can be extremely stressful. I returned to law school two more times, earning one LL.M in Taxation and another LL.M in Business transactions."


She still takes a select few family law cases, but today her practice is mostly focused on trusts and estate planning, tax planning for individuals and businesses, IRS negotiations, contract work and business consulting. 


Allison was invited to join NCBWL by her long-time friend Cora Newcomb and attended the open house at Debbie Lassiter’s home. 


"I enjoyed the friendly, kind, and welcoming women I met there so much. It is difficult for me to make the monthly Wednesday meetings in Nashville traffic, but I have loved every meeting I have attended," she said. "The sense of community in our church and within NCBWL is important to me; community was a big part of what attracted me to the Catholic faith when I was 21."


Allison has three grown children who are now in Nashville, Indianapolis and St Louis. She lives with a snobby elderly cat, and a very large two-year-old rescue dog who attends doggie school frequently and still has to be bribed with treats whenever she has company.


Lisa Link

Lisa Link has a photographer’s eye, a teacher’s heart and business woman’s mind. Those characteristics led her to launch Keepsake Portraits by Lisa in 2014.


“I got the photography bug and my first good camera from my mom and eventually took over her title of official family photographer,” Lisa said of her introduction to photography. But her career began in the classroom not in the dark room.


She was born in Kansas City and lived there until her father was transferred to Nashville when she was in the eighth grade. She attended St. Henry School for one year and went to Father Ryan High School. After attending Auburn University and getting her master's degree at California State University at Northridge, she settled in the suburbs of Atlanta and lived there for 25 years working as a teacher and becoming a wife and mother.


“Once my daughter was born, my love of taking photos of her turned into taking photos of neighbors and friends which I continued as a part-time hobby while teaching full time. When I moved back to Nashville in 2014, I ‘retired’ from teaching and officially launched my photography business. “ 


“I am a natural light photographer who specializes in fun and relaxed senior and family portraits. I also offer headshots and event photography. 

I enjoy capturing portraits that will become treasured keepsakes for years to come,” Lisa explained. “One of my future goals is to partner with other small business owners to offer a complete senior experience including hair, make-up and a new outfit for seniors who may not be able to afford professional portraits.”


She joined NCBWL this year because she “loved the idea of networking with and being around other like-minded women.”


“I have been impressed with the variety and quality of speakers at the monthly meetings, loved participating and helping plan the first Expo and am looking forward to attending my first Fashion Show, Auction and Luncheon,” she said.  


Lisa is married to Eric, a Father Ryan classmate, whom she got back in touch with after attending her 25th high school reunion after her divorce.


“We hit it off immediately, dated long distance for five years, until we got married in 2014 and I moved back to Nashville. I love being back in town with my mom, my sister and brother and their families.”


Lisa and her husband attend Holy Rosary Catholic Church where she is very involved as a CCD teacher, lector, Eucharistic Minister and member of the Parish Council. In her spare time, she volunteers for Book'em and Cottage Cove Urban Ministries on a weekly basis and is on the board for the Nashville Kappa Kappa Gamma Alumnae Association, an adviser for the Kappa chapter at Vandy and just took on the role of Publicity Chair for the NCBWL.

Karen McCoy

Karen McCoy is the chair of the 2018 Pearls of Wisdom Luncheon this year. She joined NCBWL in December of 2017 and has jumped right into the action. We wanted to let all the members get to know Karen a bit more with this spotlight profile. 

"After growing up and graduating from college in Upper Michigan, I joined Caterpillar Inc. I worked about 35 years, mostly in several manufacturing facilities in Central Illinois as a cost accountant and then did mergers and acquisitions while traveling the world," Karen said.


"One of my last assignments was a 6 Sigma master black belt at Cat Financial here in Nashville.  That’s when this mid-western girl was introduced to wonderful southern living."


After being transferred back to Illinois, she decided to retire and move back to Tennessee.


"I have been blessed with three wonderful children and two amazing grandchildren. My husband, Larry is also retired and we just finished building our home in College Grove last year," she said. 


"As I became more acclimated to the area, I was looking for a way to get involved and my good friend Donna Adams introduced me to NCBWL," Karen said. "I really thought the group was fun and I loved their dedication to education and women in business.  And most important it was a Catholic group!"


"I found the member meetings a way to meet women from all around Nashville and continue learning.  Then, last year I was invited to the luncheon and really saw the group in action," she said, adding that she was hooked at that first event. "I really enjoyed the auction and wanted to be a part of it this year.  I hope this year will be fun for all as we already have some unique and fun auction items."


Karen said the group working on the luncheon this year is amazing.


"They are fun, dedicated to Catholic education and willing to get the job done! I want everyone to be part of the luncheon this year and look forward to working with y’all!"

Barbara Esteves-Moore

Barbara Esteves-Moore grew up in New Orleans, Louisiana, and attended Catholic schools from grades 1-12. She graduated from Cabrini High School, founded by Saint Francis Xavier Cabrini, in 1988 and attended Boston University and the University of New Orleans for her undergraduate studies. She holds a bachelor of arts in mass communication. She started her career as a print journalist working in newspapers in Louisiana and Tennessee. She spent 8 years as a writer for The Tennessean covering Williamson County schools. She was given the  Williamson County Task Force Against Domestic Violence media/press award in 2003,  The Tennessean best headline news feature in 2002, the Gannett Recognition of Excellence award in 1999 and the Louisiana Press Association Awards: Gibbs Adams award, 1994; best news story, 1995; best special section, 1996.


In 2005, she became director of communications on The Dominican Campus. She spent 12 years on campus working with Overbrook School and St. Cecilia Academy helping to establish both schools' alumni magazines, design new websites and oversee all the marketing efforts.


In 2017, she started her own marketing and communications firm, Two Roads Communications, to help companies, organizations and individuals grow and improve their marketing and communication efforts. She provides professional writing, website design and content management, social media planning and management, as well as traditional marketing and public relation services. 

She is married to Jay Moore, director of communications for the Tennessee Health Care Association and a realtor with Crye-Leike. They have a 16-year-old daughter, Emily, who graduated from Overbrook School in 2015 and is currently a junior at Father Ryan High School. They are members of Holy Family Catholic Church. They live in College Grove with their Beagle, Rudy, and two horses, London and Dusty.

Cindy Hinton Church

Cindy Hinton Church was used to having people tell her she had “missed her calling” as a comedian. One day, it occurred to her that if she was still living and breathing she could rectify the “missed calling” situation. In 2011 she enrolled in comedy writing and performance classes at Rik Robert’s School of Laughs at Zanies in Nashville. She immediately found her comedic voice and has not stopped performing since.

Shortly after the comedy classes, she began an ill-advised experiment to determine how much stress one woman could handle in a brief period. Cindy has moved 3 times in 5 years, winding up in Gallatin, TN. She has battled health issues and saw the demise of a 36-year marriage. During these stressful times writing and storytelling became a welcomed haven from real life.

Spending almost 25 years as an army spouse living in South Korea, Germany and exotic south Alabama gave her a stiff upper lip, a backbone and disdain for authority.

Cindy is a 2002 graduate of Austin Peay State University completing her degree as a non-traditional student with a BS in Public Relations.

She is mother to son, Caleb Church of Seattle, Washington; and to daughter, Jennifer. Jennifer and husband Neal Harris have produced two of the most adorable sons who lovingly call her GaGa.

Cindy is an active member of Our Lady of the Lake Parish in Hendersonville where she is in her second year as a facilitator for Surviving Divorce.


"It's an exciting new ministry that will bring hope and healing to those Catholics who have experienced the pain and loneliness of a broken marriage," Cindy said. 

She has been a member of the Nashville Catholic Business Women’s League since 2013 or maybe 2014 as she would have to check the records. She is a member of The Christian Comedy Association and is a Kroger Plus card holder.

In April 2016, she appeared onstage at Tennessee Performing Arts Center as a member of Listen To Your Mother cast reading an original story. In April of this year, she will participate with 350 writers from around the country at the Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop on the campus of the University of Dayton, Ohio.

Cindy is also known to break into her comedy routine for random unsuspecting strangers and once on a moving bus.

Catherine Herro

Catherine Herro is a research and recruiting associate for The Human Capital Group. HCG is a retained executive search firm for clients all over the country. She has been there a little over two years.


Before starting at HCG, she worked in television production as a Production Coordinator for music programming, game shows, and reality shows. She claims Western Kentucky University as her alma mater and Murfreesboro as her hometown.  


Catherine married her love, Joey, in May 2016. In her spare time she loves to read, exercise, go to the movies, craft, cook, spend time with her family and friends, and eat cheeseburgers and fries. She is a volunteer with the Make a Wish Foundation, the Helping Hands committee at Holy Family Catholic Church and board member of Mission Honduras.

Lily Ayala Berlyn

Lily was born in New York after her parents fled Cuba and grew up in Miami. She attended Catholic elementary and high schools and is a graduate of Loyola University New Orleans where she received a Bachelor of Arts in Communications with a concentration in Advertising and a minor in Spanish.

Lily is a successful fundraising professional with more than 26 years of experience. She currently does part-time consulting but she most recently worked at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Lily previously served as Vice President of Institutional Advancement at The Dominican Campus, overseeing fund-raising, alumni relations and marketing efforts for Aquinas College, St. Cecilia Academy, and Overbrook School; and as Vice President of Community Counseling Service (CCS), an international fundraising consulting company. Lily’s work helped raise more than $350 million for her client’s projects. One of her projects, which is what brought her to Nashville in 2002, was the Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia’s campaign to renovate and expand the Motherhouse.

Lily and her husband, Mark met here in Nashville and married at the Cathedral of the Incarnation. They moved to St. Louis in 2008 but are very grateful and excited that they had the opportunity to return to Nashville this past March.  Lily and Mark share their home with three rescue Beagles. They are members of Christ the King parish. Lily is a member of the Leadership Council at the UMSL Honors College, just joined The Colonna Club and is looking forward to participating more with the Catholic Business Women’s League.

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