CWF Newsletter - February 2023
President's Message
The first six months of my presidency has served to strengthen my belief that the women of CWF can make a difference by Embracing Empowerment Together. Our program committee has worked hard to bring us topics and speakers that are meaningful to our members, and the pre-pandemic attendance numbers are proof that they have been successful! The new networking activities at the start of our meetings have provided us opportunities to get to know our CWF sisters better, and I am grateful for the enthusiasm with which these activities have been embraced.

And finally, I am honored by the outpouring of support for Tried By Fire, not just the monetary donations, but the welcoming and empowering spirit that you have all offered to the people and mission of this wonderful organization.

Empowering women has always been at the heart of the CWF’s mission. Through our Scholarship Program, begun in 2017, we have empowered DeAnne, Christine, Jennifer, Sylvia, Tabita, and Albina to complete their area of study at Craven Community College. It is our goal to continue this important program, however, due to price increases and budget constraints, our ability to do so is at risk.

To help fortify the future of this program, we have opened a donation page on our website, for any member who would like to personally contribute to this fund. Historically, we have provided an annual scholarship of $2,000 and hope to meet that level this year. We must decide on the amount we are able to donate to next year’s scholarship recipient by March 1st and any donations made by our members will significantly impact our ability to do so. I thank you for your consideration and will keep you all updated on the status of our scholarship program.

If you prefer to make your donation by check, please make payable to CWF (please write “scholarship” in memo) and mail to Coastal Women’s Forum, PO Box 15392, New Bern, NC 28561

I look forward to seeing you all at our February meetings! 

Gratefully yours, Kelly
Upcoming Events
Coastal Women’s Forum's February Evening Meeting
February 7th 2023, 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm

Making Marketing Work in 2023

In today’s challenging economic climate there are endless demands competing for time, attention, and resources. Now more than ever, knowing how to market your business or skills effectively is crucial for success.      

At our February evening meeting, Coastal Women’s Forum welcomes Deborah Kania, who will guide us in the best use of our time and effort to rise above the “noise” and create a long-term marketing system for business success. She will also provide insight into the first key steps to getting started. 

Deborah is an experienced executive, entrepreneur, educator, mentor, and author. She is a business instructor at Craven Community College and has also served as the director of the College’s award-winning Small Business Center and director of marketing communications, where she received recognition as 2016 staff person of the year. 

Prior to moving to New Bern in 2012, Deborah started and ran a successful small business marketing agency in Florida. She is also the co-founder of—a nonprofit assisting young autistic adults pursue their career, college, or entrepreneurial goals.

Deborah received a bachelor of fine arts degree from the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth, and an MBA from Virginia Tech.

Please join Coastal Women’s Forum on Tuesday, February 7 at 5:30 PM, at The Chelsea Restaurant, to share in Deborah’s wisdom for marketing success.      
Thank You to Our Evening Meeting Dessert Sponsor
Anna DiNisio
Tupperware Representative

Is Tupperware still around? That is what I hear all the time. Yes, Tupperware has been around for 70+ years and is still going strong. Designed for all your daily needs, Tupperware is here to help you save Space, Waste, Time, and Money. 

Do you need pantry or fridge organization? We have it!  
Do you need containers to pack a healthy lunch for you and your family? We have it!
Do you need ways to keep your fresh fruits FRESH and your fresh veggies FRESH and lasting longer? We have it!
Do you need new ways to spend less time cooking but still give your family a healthy meal? We have it!

Everything from our Modular Mates (also known as Lego's for Ladies), to our On The Go items we have what you need:
  • Kitchen Tools
  • Cookware and Bakeware
  • Serveware
  • Food Storage
  • On The Go
  • Kids & Toys

And did I mention a Career? Tupperware was the very first Party Plan and paved the way for Women to start and build their own businesses.
Tupperware - There's Only One

Invite your friends and me over and I can show you what is new, what can make YOUR life easier, and have some fun along the way.

Coastal Women’s Forum's February Daytime Meeting
February 15th, 2023, 11:30 am to 1:00 pm

Tourism – A Community Shared Value

Whether you’re a first-time visitor or life-long resident, tourism is at the heart of New Bern and Craven County’s thriving communities.

Coastal Women’s Forum’s February daytime meeting will feature Melissa Riggle, Executive Director of the Craven County Tourism Development Authority, better known as Visit New Bern. Melissa will share how she and the Authority have positioned our region as the premier tourist destination of eastern North Carolina.

Melissa’s award-winning campaigns have made New Bern and Craven County among the most desirable places in the country to visit and to live.

Melissa’s presentation, Tourism - A Community Shared Value, will highlight how thriving tourism benefits everyone living, visiting, and working in the community. A New Bern native, Melissa has pursued a successful career in the tourism and hospitality industry. She has served as Director of Sales at the previous Sheraton New Bern, where she led her team through the
hotel’s rebrand to the full-service Doubletree by Hilton Hotel.

Her talents took her to the New Bern Riverfront Convention Center in 2011, where she worked as the Craven County Sales and Service Manager. In 2020, she began her role as Executive Director of the Craven County Tourism Development Authority, better known as Visit New Bern.

A passionate industry leader, Melissa is also a leader in several national trade organizations, including Destinations International, where she serves on both the Advocacy and the Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Committees, as well as the Southeast Tourism Society’s Advocacy Committee.

Please join Coastal Women’s Forum on Wednesday, February 15 at 11:30 AM, at The Flame Banquet Center, to learn more from Melissa about Visit New Bern’s exciting programs and plans.
Thank You to Our Daytime Meeting Dessert Sponsor
With over 30 years’ experience in financial services, I work with all residential loan programs, including conventional, USDA, FHA, and VA. I specialize in customer service and meeting my clients’ needs. I am known for my excellent communication and follow-up.

Have you had a mortgage check-up lately? Let’s review your current situation and see if there are solutions for lowering your monthly payment, making that addition on to your home, or perhaps you want to purchase your first investment property. How can I help? Call me – 252-639-1616 or email:
Welcome to Our New Members
Beth McCluskey
Michele Becton
Triste Minton - MMC Financial Group, invited by Annalee Ash
Member News
It's Wave Season!

What is Wave Season? Well, Wave Season is the time of year, January to end of March, when all the cruise lines offer their best prices and deals.

This is the time to book 2023 and 2024. Contact My Travel Agent to reserve your cabin now. 252-638-4134

A Warm Thank You

To all the generous CWF members who contributed to Our Annual Coats for Kids Drive.

We Collected 109 Coats for the foster children in Craven County. And there were cash donations totaling $400 that were used to purchase the sizes needed that were not collected as well as hats, gloves, and even some toys. Thank you for your generous support in keeping a child warm this winter.

Dr. Lois Flemming
3601 Trent Road, New Bern
Greetings Ladies!

Give yourself or your loved ones the gift of LOVE this Valentine’s Day. The mattress warmer is on and the stones are so warm.  What are you waiting for?

Elise A. Medenbach, LMBT #327
Massage Therapy
Tyson Professional Center
1425 South Glenburnie Road, Suite 6
New Bern, NC 28560
252 474-6118

On Saturday evening, March 25, 2023, the Habitat for Humanity ReStore is hosting “Spring into Auction” at The Flame on Neuse Blvd. in New Bern.

This fundraising event will include UpScale items and “experiences” ready for
Live Auction, a Silent Auction, and a ReSale. There will be finger food along with beverages available for purchase, and we will also have serenades by Big Jim Kohler & his wife, Kathleen, to add to the festivities.
Sponsorships are available ranging from $500 to $3,000. We are looking for “experiences” for our Live Auction, as well as “Gift Basket” items for our Silent Auction. Volunteers are needed for the ReStore Auction Committee and for the night of the event.

To Volunteer, contact Buna Cumbia at
To Sponsor or Donate, contact Tracey Lilly at  or Cinda Hill at
Questions can be answered by Evelyn Richards at
Thanks, Sisters!

For the December CWF dinner, I festively donned sparkly earrings and a pin. Unfortunately, during
dinner, I realized I had lost the pin. True to our mission of “Network, Educate, & Encourage,” my CWF sisters scoured the room with phone flashlights, yanking up tablecloths, retracing my steps, and looking at any shiny particle that might lead to my missing brooch.

At last, we gave up the search, and I left to
head home. When I got to my car, my crystal snowflake was resting on the parking lot pavement. As happy as I was to find the pin, I was even more joyful of the reminder that, for big and little things, CWF has my back.

Thanks, ladies! I am happy to return the favor, and not just in searching for missing costume jewelry! Jane Maulucci, The Reactive Voice 860.508.1887
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