In The Spotlight

Fran Hathaway-Past President Spotlight 1986-1987

Past President Spotlight
Age: A Lady Never Tells!
Current Residence: Juno Beach, Florida
Birthplace: Lakewood, Ohio
Family: Husband Harve (physician), daughters Wendy and Julia and son Eric. Wendy teaches developmentally challenged children; Julia is a PhD candidate in climate change; Eric is a former FBI special agent, now with the Office of Inspector General for Palm Beach County.
Career: Journalist -- Palm Beach Post writer, editor, editorial board member; novelist; founder of Lifestories.

How long have you been an EWPBF member? I was among the half-dozen women, beginning with Cynthia Allan, who served as president in the early days of EWPB.

Why did you choose this organization? Women couldn’t join the all-male business organizations.  EWPB was the first organization for executive-level women.

What were your goals as EWPB President? Making EWPB known in the community as a talented and important group of individuals; encouraging broad participation and membership growth.

As President, what did you bring to EWPB? A commitment to making members better known, respected and involved as an organization in Palm Beach County.

Were there any EWPB events during your Presidency that you are most proud of? Putting the spotlight on EWPB with speakers such as Gloria Steinem and futurist John Naisbitt.

Dee Phelps-Past President Spotlight 1994-1995

Past President Spotlight
Current Residence: Palm Beach
Family: Husband and 11 grandchildren
Career: Real Estate Agent / Attorney

How long have you been an EWPBF member? 1987

Why did you choose this organization Because it was an excellent forum in which to meet like minded women who were smart, creative, talented, entrepreneurial, successful and who endeavored to support each other in business and in life.

What were your goals as EWPB President Start board meetings on time, quickly handle the business before us and to reach out to our Past Presidents with the first Past Presidents Luncheon at the Governors Club.

What Challenges did you face during your term as President? The Death of my mother in 1994, the illness of my father in 1995 and of my dear husband in 1995 and trying to keep my law practice running smoothly and do as much as possible as president of Executive Women.

As President what did you bring to the EWPB? Love of the organization and its members.

Were there any EWPB events during your Presidency that you are most proud of? The Past Presidents Luncheon at the Governors Club, I believe, was the first such meeting, and reaching out to them [The past presidents] for their experience and wisdom.

Is there a specific memorable moment that stands out to you during your times as EWPB President that made you think, "this is why I volunteer"? When Olympia Dukakis backed out at the last minute as our Leadership Luncheon and the committee was able to contact with another national, well known personality on short notice.

Is there anything else you'd like to add? I love this Tibetan Proverb: "The secret to living and longer is: eat half, walk double, laugh triple and love without measure." Since my fifties, I have climbed Forty-eight 14,000 ft + mountains in CO, the highest mountains in England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. I've climbed to 16,500 ft in Peru and Ecuador. I love to put a pack on my back and climb high summits. It is very good for the soul to realize how smart an inconsequential we are in the big scheme of things.

Virginia M. Spencer-Member's Business Spotlight

Member's Business Spotlight
Current Residence: Palm Beach Gardens, Florida
Birthplace: Kansas City, Missouri
Family: Husband and two daughters
Career: General Manager of Illustrated Properties for 20 years

How long have you been an EWPBF member? Twenty-one years as I joined in 1997

Tell us about your business and describe your role I over see 23 offices and 700 agents.  I work with the accounting department with the escrow accounts and all the payables and commissions.  I also over see the commercial agents in the company

What are your goals for your business? To continue making the company number one in Palm Beach County and to help the agents be successful.

What challenges have you faced professionally? The first time I was a broker for 11 years before Illustrated Properties it was predominately a man’s world.  I have grown over the years in the job and love being a part of the industry and all of its challenges.  Now with all the technology it is challenging to learn all the new things and have time to help the agents in the company.  It is an every changing business and always learning something new with the laws, forms, and disclosures.

Does your business produce any special events/promos and if so, do you have any coming up you would like to share? We really encourage everyone in the company to be involved in community events and charities.  We have established Illustrated Properties Charities.  The money that comes into the charity comes from donations from the agent’s commissions.  Currently I am working on our 14th annual golf tournament to be held on November 15 at Eastpointe Country Club for Toys for Tots.  This money we raise goes towards the purchase of 125 bicycles and helmets.  We have been doing this for 15 years with the local Marines.  

Is there a specific memorable moment that stands out to you during your career made you think, “this is why I love my job?  Just recently I was awarded the “Humanitarian of the Year” from the Realtors of the Palm Beaches plus Fort Lauderdale.  We now have over 30,000 members in that organization, so it was really an honor when I got it last month at the convention center.  

Is there anything else you’d like to add? The years that I have been a member of Executive Women have been some of the most rewarding and special years of my life.  I feel so blessed to have so many of the women as friends.  I can’t imagine doing my job without the support of the women I have met through the organization.  They have been there every step of the way.