Regional Networks

The Barnard regional alumnae network is made up of highly valued groups of interesting and intelligent volunteers who open their personal networks to their Barnard sisters. This year, many of our clubs devoted their gatherings to discussing the professional and personal balancing acts that women engage in to be successful in all facets of their lives. Regional clubs have discussed these issues through book-club meetings, receptions with President Spar, professional-development workshops, and conversations with our own alumnae experts. This regional network allows our alumnae the opportunity to explore topics of personal interest while also connecting with their Barnard sisters to bridge the gaps between graduating classes, and build lifelong relationships based on the life-changing experience of a Barnard education. If you are interested in learning more about any of the Barnard clubs or regional events, visit alum.barnard.edu, call 212.854.2005, or e-mail alumnaeaffairs@barnard.edu. Barnard wants to connect with you, wherever you are, and we look forward to expanding these connections in your communities throughout the world.

Celeste L. Rivera ’04, manager, regional alumnae programming

The Barnard Club of Los Angeles Celebrates the 100th Birthday of Ethel Booth ’32

Alumnae in Los Angeles gathered at the home of Marcia Gordon ’77 in March to celebrate the 100th birthday of one of the club’s most active members, Ethel Booth. Ethel regaled the group with stories about Barnard and the world in general as she experienced it over the last century.

Northern California Club Shares a New Student Tradition With Alumnae —With a Twist

On the last day of classes each fall and spring semester, students gather at 11 p.m. in the gym to enjoy the campus tradition of Midnight Breakfast. This Barnard tradition was created to build community spirit and has become a cherished event over the past 15 years. Students get to destress and eat well before they hunker down to study for exams. More than 1,000 students attend, most of whom wear pajamas, robes, sweats—anything goes—and many won’t change from that attire until they’ve taken their last final. Lisa Lin ’98, president of the Barnard Club of Northern California, was there at the beginning of this Barnard tradition and continues it today. For the last three years, the Barnard Club of Northern California has hosted Midnight Breakfast for alumnae at a local restaurant, using the event to raise funds for their Barnard scholarship fund. The event has been so popular that they need to book two seatings at the restaurant, and have raised approximately $2,000 each time for their scholarship fund.

The success of this venture has inspired alumnae in other regions to plan their own Midnight Breakfast–style events to allow young alumnae to relive a newer Barnard tradition while introducing it to earlier classes.

The Barnard Club of the Triangle Annual Dinner

This past October, the Barnard Club of the Triangle (North Carolina) hosted Elizabeth Gregory ’78, director of the women’s, gender & sexuality studies program at the University of Houston, at its annual dinner to discuss work-life balance and examine why women are choosing to pursue options such as having children later in life. Approximately 40 alumnae attended, and they spent the evening networking and planning their calendar of events, in addition to listening to Dr. Gregory.

The Barnard Club of Central New Jersey Honors Lida Orzeck ’68 at its Annual Scholarship Luncheon

Over 100 women attended the annual Barnard College Club of Central New Jersey luncheon organized by Renee Swartz ’55 at the Molly Pitcher Inn in Red Bank, N.J., in support of raising scholarship funds to send a young woman from Monmouth County to Barnard. Lida Orzeck ’68, CEO of Hanky Panky, was honored and spoke to the attendees about women making their way in the workplace.

BEnet: Barnard Entrepreneurs Network

The Barnard Entrepreneurs Network (BEnet) seeks to create context for building relationships among alumnae entrepreneurs. BEnet embraces a broad definition of “entrepreneur,” which includes founders of companies at all stages of business development and all small business owners. The group provides networking opportunities for alumnae and students who are curious about starting their own businesses.

The inaugural BEnet event was held in May 2013. The leadership group, which includes Christina Lewicky ’87, Janey Lee ’98, Jessica Stevenson ’10, Suzanne Katz ’92, and Bianca Swift ’00, has organized several popular events, and the group continues to grow exponentially. Over the past year, BEnet events have ranged from panel discussions with female business owners to intimate conversations with visionary leaders to social events and a tour of Google’s New York campus. Highlights included: a conversation with Shelley Zalis ’83, CEO of Ipsos Open Thinking Exchange; a lecture by Rita Gunther McGrath ’81, author and professor at Columbia Business School; and a panel with five acclaimed restaurateurs. On April 1, BEnet organized a panel of social entrepreneurs from the NYC B Corp community. Stay tuned for their next event.

Follow @Barnard_BENET on Twitter and like the Barnard Entrepreneur Network on Facebook.

Videos of the following BEnet events are available on the Alumnae Network:

  • Dreaming in Digital: Small Business Marketing in Today’s New Business World
  • Disruptive Innovation and the Evolution of a Lifestyle Brand
  • A New Playbook for Business Strategy in Today’s Fast Changing World
  • The Entrepreneur Restaurateur on Breaking Culinary Ground
  • B the Change—Using Business as a Force for Social Good

To view any of the above, visit alum.barnard.edu and search for BEnet. Look for videos of upcoming events in Alumnae Network Notes, the Alumnae Association’s monthly e-newsletter.

alumnae