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Member Spotlights.

Get to know Ellevate members — women who are leading the charge — and learn from their stories.


Kathryn Landis

Executive & Team Coach, NYU Prof, Keynote Speaker Kathryn Landis Consulting (Founder & CEO)

Hello! I'm Kathryn Landis, Founder & CEO of Kathryn Landis Consulting, a global executive & team coaching firm focused on helping leaders get to the next level of greatness.

Member Spotlight
Lisa Durante

Founder and Managing Principal Jack Communications

Hi! I’m Lisa Durante. I’m a storyteller, an advocate for women and parents at work, and a mom to two growing girls. For the last 10 years I’ve been leading JAck Communications - a content marketing agency that helps leaders and businesses harness the power of content to connect to their people, market their brands and grow their businesses. I’m also the chapter co-president of Ellevate Network in Toronto.

Member Spotlight
Sonya Padovani

Marketing Coordinator Sovereign Insurance

I'm Sonya Padovani and I’m the Marketing Coordinator with Sovereign Insurance. In my role, I've had the advantage and pleasure of working on many different projects that crossed over into internal communications and change management. I’m currently focused on event management and my new-found passion is creating relationship-building opportunities and experiences. I’m interested in learning more about events and connecting with event folk, especially in a corporate setting.

Member Spotlight
Stuti Govil

Communications Specialist Looking for my next role

I work as a Communications Specialist in Toronto, having made Toronto my new home a couple years ago. I have had the pleasure of having lived in four countries, multiple cities and smaller towns. Sometimes, I am so thankful for the vagabond life I lived as a child for it allowed me the opportunity to feel at home, no matter where I was in the world. I have a Master’s degree in Media and Cultural Studies (SOAS, University of London) and an MPhil. In Geography and Urban Studies (Rutgers University, New Jersey). I’m a journalist by training, an educator, writer and researcher by professional affiliations, and a communications expert by interest and passion. Currently, I work at Jack Communications as a Marketing Coordinator and volunteer with the Ellevate Toronto Chapter in the Marketing and Communications team.

Member Spotlight
Marijose Betant

CEO and Founder Pivot 360 Advisors

I am the founder and CEO of Pivot 360 Advisors, a Boutique Advisory firm focusing on business resilience and transformation. We offer integral business advisory to help companies to find gaps in their actual business processes or people structure; allowing companies to remove bureaucratic bottlenecks and seamlessly connect processes and people structures across company full ecosystem. After 24 years working on Supply Chain, Procurement and Sustainability for different companies in Europe, North, Central and South America I step-out from the corporate world and make a turnaround on my career to become a solopreneur. l have experience in the manufacturing, food and beverage, automotive and consumer products industries. And I consider myself an expert at transforming operations in a visionary way, leading cross-functional, multi-cultural and remote high-performance teams. I spent the last 8 years of my professional career working for AbInbev, leading different positions on the procurement and sustainability teams. I led multi-million budget negotiations and complex projects during my career, contributing to increase the profit of the companies I works for. My passion and interest for people drives me to get my International Coach Certification, giving me the best skills to develop people and building solid relationships with key stakeholders including C-Suite level executives and partners. I am originally from Mexico and I received a BA on International Business from the ITESM and I also have an MBA on Strategical Consulting from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid.

Member Spotlight
Vanessa Tiffany

Writer Self

Hi! I am writing fiction full time now under the name Vanessa Mayfield. I've finally started submitting my work and I'm building a new literary website for women writers and readers-- going live soon!

Member Spotlight
Karen Ann Tompson

Disability & Absence Process Owner The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America

I am Karen Tompson, I work for Guardian Life Insurance as a Disability & Absence Process Owner in our claims operation. I am focused on peresonal & professional growth, Ellevating my career and taking on what comes next in my career journey.

Member Spotlight
Sahar Ali

Research Manager Brandspark

Born in Kuwait and moved to India after high school, I have experienced different cultures firsthand and imbibed a lot of different values. Growing up I could not help wondering why people are so different and what makes people tick. Eventually, that led me to discover a career in market research, where professionals like myself spend our days studying consumer behavior and figuring out what drives people to make certain decisions. At the heart of this work lies the art of storytelling, where I transform consumer insights into meaningful narratives that resonate with both businesses and their target audiences. Beyond my work as a market researcher, I have the privilege of being part of the Toronto leadership team at Ellevate, a community that empowers women through networking, discussions, and education. As the leader of our monthly Coffee Connections,I have had the pleasure of facilitating virtual networking events that bring women together to discuss a wide range of topics. In my free time, I indulge in my passion for plants, nurturing and propagating a variety of species. I also find solace in the pages of self-help books, particularly those that combine spiritual and scientific knowledge to guide me toward a more fulfilling life.

Member Spotlight
Stephanie Beisser

Managing Director; Skincare; Cosmetics; Advocate; Safer Finder Beautycounter

Stephanie Beisser, Business Development Manager for Junction Creative. Currently I am working to build relationships, expanding my network, and collaborating with successful women. At Junction, we work with companies to drive revenue through digital marketing, strategically, creatively, and effectively. I would love to share our services with Ellevate community members that would benefit from the work we do.

Member Spotlight
Kacie Swartz CFP®, CIMA®

Managing Partner Black Barn Financial

Hi! I'm Kacie Swartz and as of January 2023, I bought half of a small financial planning firm. All 5 of us employed at the firm are women and we are one of the few all-women financial firms in the country.

Member Spotlight
Hilda Maria Valdespino

Associate Director of Career Services Instruction Year Up

I am a white Cuban woman who has achieved more than I could possibly ever have imagined. I have served as on Boards of various kinds. I have run my own business. In my mid-50's I served as an AmeriCorps VISTA for a year helping to help individuals break their cycle of poverty. I moved to Pittsburgh to live close to my grandchildren without a job. I am currently building my brand and reputation as a career coach in an organization committed to closing the opportunity divide in this counrty.

Member Spotlight
Paulette Evans, Ed.D.

CEO & Founder Evans Efficiency Experts, L. L. C.

I identify as a process improvement/project management expert who utilizes proven methodologies to effectively and efficiently solve problems at work, at home, and everywhere in between. Because this ability comes naturally to me, I recently launched Evans Efficiency Experts, a process engineering consultancy focused on helping people and organizations convert chaos to calm before they burn out.

Member Spotlight