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News & Press: Pacesetters

Out of Many, One

Tuesday, August 18, 2020   (0 Comments)
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Whether sitting at the dining room table with pets in the background or tucked away in a corner hiding away from family, the 2020 class of Pacesetters became accidental FWA history makers on August 5th when they logged into the now infamous Zoom platform amidst a pandemic for the Program’s very first virtual kick-off.

The twenty-one participants were welcomed by another history maker in her own right, FWA President and former Pacesetter mentor Simone Vinocour, who had recently been inaugurated into a rare second term. Although distant for the moment, Simone emboldened everyone to be social not only within the year-long program itself, but also within the wider FWA community as part of their membership, offering additional learning and networking opportunities.

Against the backdrop of adjustments made by everyone in 2020, on top of an election year and a newly fervent need to address social injustices, the importance of diversity, empathy, history and even a sense of humor was highlighted with the Pacesetters’ very own introductions and the evening’s main activity facilitated by the Program’s Co-Chairs, Amy Hertenstein and Marian Olah, and their essential volunteers including Kristin Laktaif, Pacesetter Committee member..

Pacesetter gallery


In groups, the Pacesetters also took time to share the high and low points in their personal and professional lives as part of a Leadership Lifeline exercise. Common threads began to emerge among stories of job promotions, plan A and plan B not working out, cross-country moves, and surprises had by taking the road less traveled.

Winston Churchill once said, “Never let a good crisis go to waste,” and the newest Pacesetters have embodied that statement with their shared commitment to the journey ahead.

Highlights provided by Jewell Jones – Vice President, Investment Management Technology @ BNY Mellon, 2020 Pacesetter.