Women CEOs To Lead Programming And Membership Initiatives For Washington State

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Astra Women’s Business Alliance, a regional partner of the Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), appoints three successful women entrepreneurs to lead its Washington Leadership Forum and to actively women business owners (WBEs) throughout the state.

“We rely on State Leaders to identify the concerns women business owners encounter in their efforts to grow their businesses,” says Diane McClelland, President and CEO of Astra. “Women-owned businesses contribute significantly to the region and national e

Astra Women’s Business Alliance (Astra) named three women entrepreneurs to lead its Washington Leadership Forum. Astra State Leaders are the voice of women business owners throughout the state. They elevate issues facing women-owned businesses to Astra’s regional office, which is headquartered in Portland, Ore., and to national Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) leadership. The women also influence and plan Astra educational programming and networking events. Supporting outreach to women business enterprises to advocate for the value of becoming WBENC-certified is also part of their leadership role.

Betta Beasley, Founder and CEO, 2rbConsulting Inc., Kirkland, and Co-Chair Astra Washington Leadership Team; Sandy Brewer, President and CEO, Pinnacle Investigations and Pinnacle Professional Services, Spokane Valley; and Kelly Sparks, Founder and CEO, VMG/studio520, Bellevue, and Co-Chair Astra Washington Leadership Team, were named Astra Leadership Forum State Leaders for a two-year term. All are WBENC-certified women-owned businesses.

Betta Beasley is the Founder and CEO of 2rbConsulting, Inc. The company connects people with technology across all functional areas of Information Technology through innovative staffing and placement services. 2rbConsulting’s Government Services Division supports public sector IT programs for federal, state and local governments and contractors. The 2rbConsulting Staffing Division supports commercial and private sector programs and projects.

Ms. Beasley is a proud U.S. Army Veteran and was appointed by the Director of the Washington Department of Veterans Affairs as Chair of the Technology Committee for the Women Veterans Advisory Committee. She works with corporations nationwide to help them understand the value of hiring veterans, and partners with corporate leaders in the development of military recruitment strategies and veteran hiring initiatives. As an advocate for women veterans, Ms. Beasley is frequently asked to speak at conferences on issues affecting veterans, ranging from military sexual trauma (MST), suicide, PTSD, homelessness, education and job placement.

Prior to starting 2rbConsulting, Ms. Beasley’s career included working for major corporations in various roles, ranging from Software Developer to Vice-President of Information Technology, including six years at Microsoft Corporation in Seattle. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Intelligence Studies with a concentration on Intelligence Analysis. She graduated from the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center (DLIFLC), with a focus on Russian Language Studies. She is an alumna of Harvard Business School and is an active member of the Harvard Club of Seattle.

2rbConsulting is headquartered in Kirkland, Wash., with key regional offices in Boston and Washington, D.C. Company website: http://www.2rbconsulting.com.

Sandra Brewer started Pinnacle Investigations over 27 years ago after leaving the Spokane, Wash., police force. Since then Pinnacle has grown into two companies with national reach: Pinnacle Investigations and Pinnacle Professional Services (PPS).

Pinnacle Investigations provides accurate, thorough and timely pre-employment background checks for companies across the country. Pinnacle Investigations takes pride in educating its clients in Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) compliance, as well as due diligence to create a safe, secure workplace while protecting the rights of job applicants. The company also works with nearly half of the nuclear generators in the country providing vital background investigations to aid in protecting one of the nation’s most valuable resources. PPS provides private investigations for the private sector, including attorneys, as well as corporate investigations. PPS also consults on workplace security.

In addition to her duties as President and CEO, Ms. Brewer supports many woman business organizations, including volunteering as a site certification inspector for Astra Women’s Business Alliance. She has served on the board of Women in Nuclear and the Washington State School Safety Forum. Ms. Brewer is a nationally recognized speaker on risk management and best practices in safe hiring, particularly as it relates to the prevention of school and workplace violence. She regularly is a featured speaker at human resources and nuclear energy conferences. Ms. Brewer has authored many articles on security and safe hiring and co-authored the book Behind the Badge, which chronicles her experience with the police department, including her work as the first female patrol officer in Spokane. Company website: http://www.pinnacleprof.com.

Kelly Sparks has more than 15 years of integrated marketing experience with a focus on leveraging the power of digital communications to drive results for brands and consumers. She created a company that works across a wide spectrum of Fortune 500 brands, including Microsoft, T-Mobile, AMD, Intel, and Colliers International, as well as regional powerhouse brands such as Gene Juarez, Metropolitan Market, Swedish, and Alaska Seafood Marketing. Her insight enables powerful branded digital experiences to connect consumers with brands. She also shows clients how to extract useful insights and ROI from their digital platforms.

VMG evolved from a one-woman business into a respected team of 14 professionals that occupies 7,200 sq. feet of space in Bellevue, Wash. Sparks is an Emmy Award-winning director. VMG/studio520 has 22 Telly's, an Emmy and an Addy to its credit. The company was named one of the best places to work by the Puget Sound Business Journal. Company website: http://www.vmgstudio520.com.

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Founded in 1996 by Diane McClelland, President/CEO, and Suzanne Lackman, Vice President/CFO, Astra Women’s Business Alliance (http://www.astrawba.org) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation and a regional partner of WBENC (Women Business Enterprise National Council), providing certification of women-owned business enterprises (WBEs). Astra believes WBEs will change the world in a profound way, leading to global economic growth. Astra fuels economic development and job creation by championing women business owners and providing tools to grow their companies through public and private contracts and skill-building, as well as by cultivating the next generation of women entrepreneurs. Astra provides WBENC and WOSB (Women Owned Small Business) certification to qualified women-owned businesses in Alaska, Northern California, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington.

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Diane McClelland
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Barbara Wichmann, Astra Chair 2015
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