Marsh Furniture contributes and partners with Women in Motion initiative to support career development for local women
Marsh Furniture has made a major donation to Women in Motion of High Point as a means of encouraging and facilitating the professional advancement of women through mentoring, training and networking with local businesswomen. The company hopes to partner with Women in Motion to provide personal development opportunities for women working in its 600-person headquarters and factory.
Mollie Marsh Brugh stepped into the CEO role in her grandfather’s cabinet business in 2011 to lead the company out of the housing slump that followed the 2008 financial crisis. She’s been successful in getting Marsh Furniture growing again. In 2017, the company was ranked twelfth in the Triad Business Journal Fast 50 listing for business growth.
Brugh, together with the Marsh Family Council that includes Brugh, Jim Marsh, Sr. and Reid Marsh, are initiating efforts in corporate social responsibility that include their donation to the Women in Motion initiative.
“Women in Motion provides a type of training we don’t currently offer that encourages women to strengthen different skillsets with a more personal growth opportunity,” says Brugh. “It’s a very exciting idea and we’ve begun a process of identifying training needs. I’m very impressed with the strength of the program and its talented group of experienced women.”
Brugh understands employee development. Her own experience includes leading the training department of North Carolina National Bank. As a trainer and female executive whose business has more women in leadership roles today, she sees value in the type of development offered by Women in Motion.
“Women are making more progress now,” says Brugh. “However, sometimes they don’t realize that with the appropriate voice and by speaking up for yourself, they can have more opportunities.”
Women in Motion is an initiative of the High Point Community Foundation and is led by a diverse group of local women leaders and is dedicated to empowering women of all races, creeds, income and ages in the greater High Point community.
The L. Paul Brayton Family funded Women in Motion at its inception, dedicating its gift in honor and memory of wife and mother, Gwen Brayton.
Individuals and organizations interested in supporting Women in Motion should contact Sherri Scott at the High Point Community Foundation, 336-882 3298, email@example.com or visit WomeninMotionHP.org
PHOTO: Marsh Furniture employees Elizabeth DeLeon, Supply Order Leader (left) and Qumara Lee, Factory Production Control Manager.
Pinnacle Financial Partners earns a lot of praise for being a great place to work, whether it’s for soon-to-be retirees or Millennials. Most recently, the bank was ranked sixth in Forbes’ 100 Best Workplaces for Women list.
Pinnacle, based in Nashville, also has a commitment to the local communities that it serves. When Pinnacle acquired Bank of North Carolina in 2017, local associates, clients and greater High Point were foremost in the bank’s mission.
“High Point is really important to us,” says Pinnacle Financial Partners’ President and CEO Terry Turner. “If you’re in the banking business, you’re going to be a product of the market that you serve. That’s why we choose high growth markets like the Triad. So, our future is tied to the success of High Point.”
Given this, it makes perfect sense that Pinnacle Financial Partners would partner with Women in Motion of High Point. Thebank is a financial contributor and also provides leadership through several of its most experienced associates.
Women in Motion is one community resource through which Pinnacle can make a positive impact here, and the initiative’s professional development and advocacy for women in the workplace.
For Pinnacle Financial Partners, advancing the needs of their associates is a fundamental part of the company’s philosophy. And it comes from a very practical motivation.
The bank, founded in 2000, has seen significant growth and expansion in the Southeast. By hiring and retaining experienced associates with competitive compensation and an award-winning company culture, Pinnacle keeps turnover low. Clients appreciate their experienced personnel. The High Point team includes people who have been there since the days of High Point Bank, later acquired by Bank of North Carolina.
“If we create this great work environment for all of our associates, they’ll create a great work environment for our clients,” says Turner. “If we do that, the winners are our communities and our shareholders.
“When you get it right for the clients, the communities that we serve and the shareholders that we serve are the beneficiaries.”
Community outreach is part of the success formula.
“We target 1% of our pre-tax profits to give back in the form of contributions to the markets that we serve,” said Turner. “Instead of just supporting one signature cause, we want to spread the love, so to speak, and let our associates decide how our community investments are made. We support the causes that are important to them because they know what’s needed most in their communities.”
When Pinnacle Financial Partners came to High Point, Paula Comer, Senior Vice President, Trust Portfolio Advisor, had already laid the groundwork for similar community outreach in her work with High Point Bank.
In 2014, Comer helped launch the Wise Women Series, a program of educational socials geared toward women and covering topics such as IRA’s, Simplifying your Financial Life, Investments 101 in both High Point and Winston Salem. In the first luncheon, Deanne Ebel, Senior Trust Advisor, spoke on “Estate Planning Blunders—mistakes many famous people have made with their estate planning.”
Comer and her colleagues see first-hand, every day the demanding roles that women play in childcare, domestic decisions, jobs and family finance.
“Women tend to be the primary caregivers to children, parents and their spouse,” said Comer. “Typically, men are the primary decision maker for investment planning and I wanted to bring awareness to women about basic topics around their financial lives and provide a forum to ask questions.”
The Wise Women concept was a good match for Turner’s organization. Around the same time, the L. Paul Brayton family, High Point Community Foundation and the bank had begun conversations about establishing a foundation and perhaps steering it toward a women’s initiative, that would become Women in Motion of High Point.
Another long-time employee and community service advocate who made the Pinnacle transition is Office Leader and Branch Manager Eva Ogden.
“The legacy has not been lost, but renewed,” said Ogden who, with Comer, is a Women in Motion leadership committee member. “That’s exciting especially when you have an initiative like Women in Motion. It’s nice to see that the bank supports us and allow us to participate in initiatives and activities that help the community.”
Ogden sees the mission as clearing away some of the more challenging hurdles for women who want to advance in careers and establish better work-life balance.
“Women in Motion is a second-level of assistance for women,” said Ogden. “We’re really targeting women who are already working and want to keep moving up. And there are a lot of things to keep women from continuing to grow…anything from type of work-life balance allowed at their job, to care for children, transportation and negotiation skills. Things you don’t know that you don’t know.”
Angela Eddins attended a Pinnacle event where the bank presented Women in Motion leaders with a check for the endowment and immediately volunteered and made a financial contribution. Eddins is Senior Vice President Trust Retirement Services at Pinnacle.
“With Pinnacle being an advocate for the same goals as Women in Motion, I think it will be a really good partnership,” said Eddins. “The common thing between Pinnacle and Women in Motion is knowledge.
“Pinnacle believes in educating the employees and making them aware of other opportunities in the community. I think that’s a lot of what Women in Motion is about as well: providing women with the opportunity to expand their knowledge and saying that regardless of what they’re facing in their lives they can continue to pursue their dreams and work toward those achievements.”
The Pinnacle Financial Partners partnership with Women in Motion is a template for how businesses in and around High Point can engage with the community in ways that not only give back, but can also grow business as more people advance in their education, careers and lifestyles.
Best of all, it’s got the support of top management.
“We’ve got a team there that cares about the community,” said CEO Terry Turner. “They’re integrated in it and decisions on giving back are made on a local basis.”
Blake and Hope Frazier, owners of The Car Wash Company, make generous corporate gift for Women in Motion Fund
[Photo: Standing left to right are Paul Lessard, Blake Frazier and Hope Frazier—owners of The Car Wash Company—Lisa Brayton, Martha Yarborough, Sherri Scott.]
The Women in Motion Fund of the High Point Community Foundation received a generous corporate gift from The Car Wash Company who are quickly becoming one of High Point’s most generous corporate benefactors. On Wednesday, December 15, 2017, Blake and Hope Frazier, owners and operators of The Car Wash Company, joined other local companies who are investing in projects that are impacting their customers in High Point. The Fraziers, who relocated from Georgia, have built a state-of-the-art car wash located on South Main Street, just beyond the old 85 exit. The business has become well-known and very popular for their neon lime green colors and their high-tech washing process that is setting a new standard in the industry.
“I met Blake and Hope about two years ago and could see right away that they were people who wanted to not only bring a great business to High Point, but also give back to the community,” noted Paul Lessard, President, High Point Community Foundation. “Over the past year they have made multiple gifts to local non-profit organizations and local schools that are making a positive difference in the High Point Community. They are young, committed and they have a real heart for touching the folks in High Point! I’m so proud of them!”
Their most recent gift to the Women in Motion Fund was made by Blake in honor of his wife, Hope. The Fund which was established by the Paul Brayton Family who gave an initial gift of $500,000 with an additional matching gift of $250,000 to help encourage others to contribute. The Fund, which has been led by Chairman Martha Yarborough, is focused upon Women’s causes and promoting and empowering women of all races, creeds, ages and economic backgrounds.
“We are so grateful for Blake and Hope for their generous gift to this fund,” said Yarborough. “They are such a young, sincere couple whose giving is direct extension of their Christian faith. It’s wonderful to see our corporate community stepping up to support the women in the greater High Point community which includes Thomasville, Archdale, Trinity and Jamestown.”
The leadership team of the Women in Motion Fund have been working hard these past four months to meet the $250,000 match offered by the Brayton family and are getting close. For every dollar donors give the Brayton family will match it dollar for dollar up to $250,000, so those who give immediately double their gift. Sherri Scott, Director of Donor Services, Administration and the Foundation liaison for the fund sees a bright future for the Women in Motion fund in the years to come.
“Women play such a huge role in our community,” said Scott. “Many are serving as the head of their household, others are trying to improve their lives by educating themselves or climbing the corporate ladder. This Fund is for them, we want to empower and inspire and we will do this with grants, seminars and mentoring. Every woman in High Point can be a part of this by simply donating $100 which will make them a voting member for the Women in Motion Granting Program. Also, all you men can be a part of this too by making donations in honor of your wives, mothers, daughters and granddaughter’s…it a great way to invest in the future of our community,”
If you are interested in supporting the “Women in Motion” Fund you may donate through the Women in Motion Website HERE or contact Sherri Scott at the Foundation at 336.882.3298.
November 15 is National Philanthropy Day. The Association of Fundraising Professionals designated the day and, in 1986, President Reagan signed the proclamation to recognize the day on the US calendar. We thought it would be a great time to highlight three amazing High Point businesswomen who have made a charitable impact on the community in up close and personal video interviews.
For this National Philanthropy Day, we sat down with L’Tanya Joy Bailey, owner of L’Tanya J. Bailey, Orthodontics, Lisa Hawley, owner of Southern Roots Restaurant and Catering, and Tu Sen, owner of 98 Asian Bistro. We wanted each woman to tell her story about how she got started and what made her business a success. We also wanted to hear what valuable career advice helped them build their businesses and how they would advise other women who might be considering becoming business owners.
Southern Roots Restaurant
L’Tanya J. Bailey
L’Tanya J. Bailey, Orthodontics
98 Asian Bistro
Most importantly, we wanted to showcase how each businesswoman has herself become a philanthropist and made giving back to the community a part of her business philosophy—especially in ways that can help other High Point area women find similar fulfillment and success in careers, education and business.
We hope you’ll celebrate National Philanthropy Day with Women in Motion and share these clips with your friends and colleagues. It’s a great way to share our mission with the community and beyond. You can also help us grow the Women in Motion Network with your contribution that you can make, right here.
The Women in Motion mission to “develop partnerships and programs that help women achieve independence and fulfillment” has led the initiative to a new partnership with the Center for Academic Engagement of Guilford Technical Community College to help keep economically disadvantaged GTCC women enrolled, through graduation, by providing workshops and mentoring for students who are at risk of dropping out for non-academic reasons.
“Women in Motion gets our population.”
Earning an associate degree through a community college can make a big difference in advancing a career and earning more income, along with gaining greater overall stability and security. Any academic endeavor requires dedication, study and hard work, but in many community colleges, it also demands balancing a full-time job, finances, home life and daycare. Even with good grades, such demands can hinder aspiring students who are often forced to drop out and never complete their degrees.
This is why a program called Titan Link is so important to GTCC women. The program is a resource for addressing non-academic challenges, be they financial, medical, housing, transportation or childcare.
Women in Motion is leading four workshops for students in the Titan Link program, covering:
- Professional Development
- Self-esteem and Empowerment
- Financial Literacy
Women in Motion will also team up with groups of 20 GTCC women to provide consultation and mentoring to encourage degree completion.
“We’re excited about this opportunity to help women in the workplace excel through continuing education,” said Dr. Ginny McDermott, Women in Motion leadership committee member and interim dean of the Nido R. Qubein School of Communication at High Point University. “This will be the first of many such partnerships in the community and the Titan Link program gives us a template for future engagements with community partners like GTCC.”
Sybil Newman of the Center for Academic Engagement coordinates Titan Link and was instrumental in arranging the Women in Motion partnership.
“Women in Motion gets our population,” says Newman. “They understand that 41% of the population in our institution are moms and need to retool their work, finances and childcare arrangement, as well as other elements outside of classroom in order to succeed.
“We’ve seen a decrease in enrollment across the state, so we have to keep students connected. If we don’t address the non-academic they can’t stay.”
Newman says 50% of students separate from school because “life happens” and of this group, 41% are woman.
“Women in Motion has signed on to undergird women taking classes,” says Newman. “Titan Link women will learn about self-esteem and empowerment, financial literacy, and negotiation techniques to help women complete their GTCC degrees and go into the market with ammunition while better knowing themselves.”
For more information about our work with Titan Link, contact us here.