program committee

 WF Program Committee 2023

Program Committee at the Trailblazers Event, March 3, 2023

Paula S. Marshman, Chair

Paula has been with the Women’s Fund of the Capital Region since 2007 starting with the Volunteer Committee. She served with the Program Committee where the scholarship and emergency funding initiatives of the Women’s Fund were developed. She was involved in the transition of the Women’s Fund to the Women’s Employment and Resource Center (WERC) in 2020 and now serves on the WERC Board and its Marketing Committee.

Now retired from New York State, her professional experience was primarily with the NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance’s training and staff development and the NYS Coastal Management Program.
In addition to her involvement with the Women’s Fund, her community experience includes the Mohonasen Foundation for Excellence Board, her Town’s IDA Board of Directors, the successful CommUnity Day, and her school district's Budget Advisory Committee. Paula’s accomplishments in the environmental field include being a founding Board Member of the New York State Wetlands Forum and a past President and Board Member of the Environmental Clearinghouse of Schenectady.

Paula was recognized as a 2017 Distinguished Community Volunteer by the Schenectady County Community College Foundation.

She graduated from Michigan State University, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources with her M.S. degree in Community Resource Development and received her B.A. in Geography and Environmental Science from SUNY Plattsburgh.


Megan Allen
CEO, New York Council of Nonprofits

Megan has worked with the Women’s Fund since 2006, first as a staff person while at United Way of the Greater Capital Region, and since 2009 as a volunteer. Her volunteer activities with the Women’s Fund have included organizing Freihofer’s Community Walk teams, participating in strategic planning sessions and maintaining the group’s Facebook page.

Megan is CEO at the New York Council of Nonprofits (NYCON), which works to develop and promote an effective, vibrant charitable community in New York State. She also serves on the Capital District Women’s Employment and Resource Center’s Board of Directors, as well as Chair of the organization’s Grant Committee.

Megan has a bachelor’s degree in Communications from Alfred University and a master’s degree in Business Administration and certificate of non-profit management from the College of Saint Rose.

Pattie Beeler

Pattie Beeler has an extensive legal background in Court Administration. She was previously employed by the Office of Court Administration and for most of her 35 year career she was the Chief Clerk of Rensselaer County Family Court. She has been responsible for performance management, employee relations, analysis and projection of staff planning and all aspects of human resource management as well as the overall management and non judicial operation of the court.

Pattie was the recipient of 2007 Community Partnership Award presented by Unity House Inc., in recognition of her commitment and excellence in coordinated community response and outstanding service to victims of domestic violence.

Pattie is honored to serve on many Boards in the Capital District area of New York State, including the Woman's Club of Albany, Kitten Angels, and is please to be the Vice President of the Board of Directors of Mediation Matters. She also serves as Co Chair of the Third Judicial District's Gender Fairness Committee and is a Statewide Representative to the NYS Committee on Women in the Law.

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Kate Dudding
Storyteller, Retired Computer Scientist

Kate worked in the computer industry for 31 years: as a research assistant in the Psychology Department of Tufts University, and in Cardiology Research at Tufts Medical Center; as a computer programmer for Jarrell-Ash, a division of Fischer Scientific, programming atomic emission spectroscopy instruments; and as a computer scientist at GE Global Research working on many projects including transmission of digital mammograms using a Ku-Band satellite, and a preventative maintenance system for aircraft engines. She has been awarded two U.S. patents. She has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and French from Tufts University, and a master’s degree in Computer Science from Union College.

Since 1995, Kate has been a storyteller, now specializing in stories of real people who made a difference. Many of her five CDs have received national storytelling awards. She won the story slam (competition) at the 2010 National Storytelling Conference in Los Angeles. She  received the 2008 Northeast Region ORACLE Award from the National Storytelling Network for her leadership and service among storytellers. She and her producing partner Alden (Joe) Doolittle received the 2015 Brother Blue and Ruth Hill Award "in recognition of extraordinary commitment, dedication and loving encouragement to the storytelling community", presented by Northeast Storytelling.

Kate has been the volunteer webmaster for the Women’s Fund since 2006.


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Alicia Lasch
Vice President, Non-Profit Services, Graypoint LLC

Alicia Lasch joined Graypoint LLC in 2022. Previously, Alicia spent nine years at Adirondack Research & Management, Inc., a boutique asset management firm and investment advisor to Adirondack Funds.  At the time of her departure, she was the Director of Investor Relations.  In addition, she spent more than a decade in corporate finance with private start-ups and publicly traded companies serving the government, telecommunications and technology sectors in Washington, D.C., Atlanta and Boston, respectively. An active member of the community, Alicia is currently Chair of the Community Foundation for the Greater Capital Region.  Her prior volunteer work includes serving on the Board of Trustees for the Academy of the Holy Names, the Steering Committee for The Women’s Fund of the Capital Region and as Treasurer for the local chapter of Women in Insurance & Financial Services.  Alicia received her Bachelor of Science in Finance from Boston College.


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Lori MacPherson
Executive Assistant, M&T Bank
Lori MacPherson is a proud graduate and Silver Star Alumni awardee of WERC,  Lori has been a WERC Board member since November, 2020, and just recently joined the Women's Fund committee.
For the first 30 years of her professional life Lori enjoyed a career as a professional ballet dancer in New York City.  Upon retiring from performing she returned home to the Capital Region with the need to forge a second career. She credits WERC's training and coaching for so effectively preparing her to transition to the next "stage" of her life. She aspires to help bridge the same leap for every woman in need of a fresh start, a path forward, a new beginning. 
Currently, Lori is Executive Assistant to the Head of Community Markets at M&T Bank.
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Arcangela Mele-Chapman
Content Writer

Arcangela is a content writer and communications professional with a background in marketing, media relations, and journalism. She specializes in helping organizations grow and expand their reach by sharing their unique story, engaging audiences, and communicating their value and impact with the public.

She has broad experience with a variety of nonprofits as both a staff member and committee member; most recently serving on the program committee for The Women’s Fund of the Capital Region, and on the marketing committee for the Capital District Women’s Employment and Resource Center (WERC).

Arcangela earned her bachelor’s degree in communications from The University at Albany where she completed coursework in journalism, public relations, and marketing. She then went on to write for a number of local publications including Capital Region Living Magazine and The Spotlight Newspapers, before shifting her focus to fundraising and marketing for nonprofit organizations.

In addition, Arcangela has a strong interest in entrepreneurism and small business growth. She has worked with a number of start-up businesses in the Capital Region and is a graduate of the Capital Region Chamber’s Entrepreneur Boot Camp.


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Gloria H. Rodgers
Owner/Principal, GHR Media Buying


Gloria Rodgers is a long-time volunteer with The Women’s Fund of the Capital Region and has worked on the Program, Events, and Trailblazers committees.

Among her volunteer activities are Habitat for Humanity Albany and New Orleans (Katrina Relief) and Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood.

An advertising consultant with 45+ years’ experience, Gloria’s field of expertise is media buying and planning as well as training media buyers for ad agencies. She is a member of the Alliance for Women in Media (she was the inaugural roastee of AWM's annual Toast and Roast fund-raising event) and the Capital Region Advertising Federation, which awarded her the Distinguished Service Award for outstanding service to the industry and to her community.

Gloria holds a BA in French and Russian from the University at Albany.


Heather Senecal
Director, Learning and Evaluation, United Way of the Greater Capital Region.

Heather Senecal has over fifteen years experience in international and community development first as a Peace Corps Volunteer (Togo, West Africa), then with the University at Albany’s Center for International Development, and currently with United Way of the Greater Capital Region.

While in the Peace Corps, Heather worked with local schools, farm associations, women’s groups and youth leaders on community planning and development, girls’ education, developing own source revenues and public health initiatives. Moving to the Capital Region in 2008 for graduate school, Heather joined the University first as a Research Fellow and then as an Associate where she devoted much of her time on grant and program management as well as developing monitoring, evaluation (M&E), and learning frameworks for programs. Heather believes that evaluation goes beyond efficacy and accountability for organizations, that it is a shared framework of commitment to the communities in which we work.

She brings that same spirit of commitment to her role at United Way of the Greater Capital Region. Heather is incredibly proud to work for an organization and with inspiring community partners who believe that by collaborating and learning together we can make real, system-level change.