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A monthly newsletter from the Rochester Professional Consultants Network.

Save the Date! 

RPCN Has scheduled our 5th annual Entrepreneurs Wall of Fame Gala for Wednesday, April 24, 2019, at the Hilton DoubleTree Hotel, 1111 Jefferson Road. We welcome Ginny Ryan from Channel 13 as our returning emcee and Andrew Brady of the XLR8 Team as our keynote speaker.

Nominations for all seven categories of awards will open in January. Please start thinking of fellow RPCN members, your clients, and people you know in the community, to nominate for these awards. The award categories are: Consultants Consultant, Community Champion, Linda Halliburton Friend of RPCN, Dave Young Dedicated Service, Entrepreneur of the Year, Leadership Award, and Steve Royal Lifetime Achievement Award. Details about these awards can be found on the RPCN website,

Gala sponsorships and program book advertising opportunities are available. 


$500 Platinum: Five minutes to talk about your business, put literature on tables, receive a list of attendees, have a link on the RPCN website, receive an ad in the May/June and July/August events flyer, have your logo on table tent card and receive a full-page ad in the event program

$250 Gold: Receive a list of attendees, receive an ad in the May/June and July/August events flyer, have your logo on table tent card and receive a half-page ad in the event program

$150 Silver: Receive a list of attendees, receive an ad in the May/June and July/August events flyer; have your logo on table tent card and receive a quarter-page ad in the event program

Program Ads:

Quarter page: Member $25; Non-Member $50

Half Page: Member $50; Non-Member $75

Full Page: Member $100; Non-Member $125

RPCN Hosting “Building Healthy Organizations”
Lunch & Learn Series

January 16 at Browncroft Restaurant

The Rochester Professional Consultants Network (RPCN) is hosting a lunch and learn series on building healthy organizations. The first session, ‘Trust – the Essential Ingredient,’ will be held on Wednesday, January 16, 2019, from 11:30 am to 1:00 p.m. at the Browncroft Restaurant, 2501 Browncroft Blvd. While the event itself is free, lunch is not. Attendees who wish to eat lunch may order individually from the restaurant menu. Register online here.

This series will provide an opportunity to explore Dr. Floyd Tucker’s “Enhancing Human Capital” program with a 6-part lunch and learn series. This series is designed to help businesses build healthy organizations and happy employees. 

The remaining lunch and learn series topics are Building Healthy Teams, Change Management, Performance Management, Optimizing Relationships in Your Entire Value Chain, and Steven Covey / 7 Habits / Trust Building.

RPCN and Simon School Announce Continuation
of Joint Partnership to Provide Mentors
to Simon Vision Students

In an effort to increase experiential learning opportunities for the University of Rochester’s Simon School of Business MBA and MS students, Simon developed the Simon Vision program. It is a student-run program with a 4-5 member student team provide consulting to (typically) a local small business for 12 weeks (one semester). After the 12 week period is over, Simon may have another student consulting team take over another project for the company.  

Participation in the program is voluntary for the students and is not part of the regular Simon curriculum. There are two faculty advisors who help the students run the program. RPCN mentors help the teams to stay focused and complete their project goals. We supplied mentors to four student teams in the Spring ’18 semester and to 15 student teams this past Fall.

Due to the success of the program, Simon and RPCN plan to continue it this Spring. We are anticipating 11 student teams will be looking for mentors to help with projects, primarily in marketing, general management (financial/accounting planning etc.) and possibly operations management. They may also be looking for additional areas of expertise; we will not know until the semester starts.

For the Spring program, we are looking for up to 11 RPCN members who would be available to meet with students biweekly over the 12-week project term. We are also looking for additional RPCN members who could provide specific subject matter expertise should the student teams require it. We are expecting the program to start at the beginning of February and the projects would begin soon thereafter. The first week of May is the target for project completion. Last semester the project managers met with their teams for about an hour 2-4 times; we anticipate project managers would meet with their teams 3-6 times (most likely 4-5 times) this semester so the time commitment on the part of project managers should only be about 10-20 hours over the course of the semester.

If you have an interest in helping Simon fulfill its motto (“Where thinkers become leaders!”) and also have experience in marketing, general management, operations, or even consulting in general (and we are the Rochester Professional Consultants Network, so you should be good there!) please let us know and we will add you to the mentorship roster.

To get more information about the project or to volunteer to be a mentor, please contact Dave Bassett (

Have You Heard an Inspiring Speaker?
Got a Topic of Interest You’d Like to Share?
Consider RPCN!

Since 2013 RPCN has been on a quest to “Learn from the Best”. We have brought in speakers who have made their mark in various aspects of business. We find many presenters through networking and at conferences, workshops, trade shows, universities, and professional organizations. Through these resources, we have engaged some very stimulating, insightful and inspiring speakers. Members have suggested a topic of interest or a speaker that turned out to be a real inspiration. Presenters have mentioned that speaking at RPCN is so interactive,  they actually learned from the group.

In the recent few years, we have had some marvelous presenters on a variety of topical areas.

  • Business – of– Business
  • Marketing & Sales
  • Economic Opportunity
  • Consulting Fundamentals
  • Computer & Software Skills

We have been inviting members to participate more broadly in the programs.

Have you identified a topic that we seem to have missed in our offerings?
Have you been to a presentation or a conference where a presenter did such a good job, that you believe RPCN should hear him or her?
Have you been so inspired by a topic but you thought you could better?
Would you like to cover a topic of your own?  

If you answered yes to any of these questions, as a member, RPCN may be the place to make your suggestion, recommend a speaker or a topic, or try out your material to hone your speaking skills.  

We’ll even give you feedback as you compose your presentation, slides, and speech. 

Drop us a line at

Here’s to your success!

Michael Van der Gaag, RPCN Program Chair

Member News

“Is There a grant for that?” is the title of a free talk to be given by Margit Brazda Poirier, owner of Grands4Good LLC and an RPCN member. The event will be on February 13, 10:00-11:30 a.m. at the Monroe County Central Library, 115 South Avenue in Rochester. Anyone interested in learning more about whether or not there may be grants available for them, and what grant funding can to for their business, non-profit or not, may benefit from this talk. To register, contact

Margit Brazda Poirier will also be presenting a series of seven one-hour webinars on “Grant Writing: All You Need to Succeed.” Learn more and register here.

Melody Masters Big Band Performs Jan. 23rd on Live Radio

The Melody Masters Big Band will perform at 7 PM on Wednesday, January 23, 2019 as part of the Jazz Radio 90.1 monthly live broadcast from the studios.

Directed by Dr. Marcia Bornhurst Parkes, the Melody Masters Big Band engages music-loving audiences throughout the greater Rochester region, playing at music festivals, private and public community events, benefits, and social occasions. This 17-piece band brings it on home with heart while performing a high-quality classic repertoire including fresh arrangements of big band standards, and by honoring the legends of Basie, Dorsey, Ellington, Miller, Sinatra, and many others.

For information about the band please click here. For more about the series please click here. Be sure to tune in at 7 PM on Wednesday, January 23rd.

Rochester City School 16, an elementary school located in Rochester’s the 19th Ward, engaged Dr. Marcia Bornhurst Parkes, a consultant with Insightful Music Leadership, to develop a project with art and music teachers that could involve community partners and address key objectives given in the 2018-2019 School Comprehensive Plan as well as key principles of the Rochester Monroe Anti-Poverty Initiative (RMAPI) such as poverty, trauma, and structural racism.

The project “RCSD School 16 Builds Community in the 19th Ward” is one of several that would address specific community needs in Monroe County. RMAPI, a division of the United Way of Rochester, “is a multi-sector community collaborative whose aim is to improve the quality of life by reducing poverty and increasing self-sufficiency.” To learn more, please click here.

RPCN Video

Watch the new introductory video here.

RPCN Podcast

To listen to an RBJ podcast in which RPCN's David Powe and Laurie Enos talk about our great organization, click here.

Upcoming RPCN Events

Visit our website to register for any of these events.

Trust - The Essential Ingredient
Part 1 of a 6-part "Lunch and Learn" series
Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019
11:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Browncroft Restaurant

Business Forum
Friday, Jan. 18, 2019
8:00 - 9:30 a.m. 
Pittsford Community Library

RPCN Board Meeting
Everyone is welcome to attend.
Friday, Jan. 18, 2019
10:00 a.m. - Noon
Pittsford Community Library

Navigating the Financial Roadblocks for Consultants
Presented by Michael Chabalik
Friday, Jan. 25, 2019
8:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.
Five Star Bank at City Gate

Library Notes

Donated by Laurie Enos:

Hemphill, Paul Lloyd (2017).
Why you’re already a leader: Gettysburg stories that prove leadership is in your DNA.

An unusual book based on Gettysburg.

“…allows one to read a few pages at a time and discover useful life lessons.” Jay Jorgensen

“Over 200 life-lessons from 88 short stories are stimulating takeaways that reveal how a character is defined, how your success can be achieved, and why your own leadership is self-evident. Open to any page for a quick read to expand your outlook and enrich your life.”

Barnes, Jeffrey A. (2015).
The Wisdom of Walt: Leadership lessons from the happiest place on Earth.

“…distills Walt Disney’s vision, his knowledge, and his methods into a series of actionable lessons. Through historical vignettes about Disneyland, as well as plentiful examples and exercises, Barnes creates a framework through which you can apply Walt’s wisdom to improve your career, your company, and your life.”

Catalogued 12/10/18

Help Wanted!

Do you make coffee at home? Then… would you consider making it just twice a month when RPCN meets at the Five Star Bank? Ideally, this position involves arriving at Five Star at 7:30 a.m. twice a month, brewing the coffees, staying for clean-up until approximately 9:45, and managing the supplies. Remembering that everything about RPCN depends on volunteers, and this would be an ideal opportunity for anyone to contribute to the comfort of our members and visitors twice a month. 

If you are interested, and/or have questions please contact Bob Manard.

Program Ad Sheets

At every RPCN meeting, and at our events and tradeshow booths, RPCN distributes the Program Ad sheets.

Ads are inexpensive and support RPCN. The cost for members to advertise is $20 for 2 months. For non-members, the cost is $40 for 2 months. The deadline to get your ad included in the March/April 2019 calendar ad sheet is February 15, 2019. Sign up for your ad here.

Sponsor an RPCN Meeting

Would you like to promote your business at RPCN meetings? You can do this by sponsoring an RPCN meeting. 

As a meeting sponsor, you will choose a Friday to bring donuts (or other morning goodies) for 30 people to the RPCN meeting of your choosing. RPCN will provide the coffee (included in your fee).

Benefits of being a Meeting Sponsor:

• The sponsor will get up to 3 minutes to talk about your business to the audience before the presentation starts at the RPCN meeting.
• Your logo will be on display at the refreshment table to acknowledge your sponsorship.
• Your logo will be displayed on the page of the event that you choose to sponsor. Your logo will have a link back to your website.
• With enough advance notice, we will also place your logo on the RPCN calendar ad sheet next to the date you chose. The RPCN calendar ad sheet is distributed to all attendees at each of our weekly meetings.

Click here to register at least 2 weeks prior to the date you want to sponsor.

New members

RPCN welcomes the following new members:

Sid Abrol
Greg Brooks
Shelbi Hoffman
Lane Keating

Not an RPCN member? You can join RPCN now to receive great benefits, including free admission to RPCN presentations, a listing in the RPCN Member Directory, and discounts to RPCN events. Click here for more information on joining RPCN.

We want your news!

The RPCN newsletter welcomes news, success stories, tips, resources, events and other items that would be of broad interest to consultants. Submit a newsletter item to for inclusion. 

Steve Royal, Publisher
Melanie Watson, Project Manager 
Diana Robinson, Copyeditor

Please send content for the February newsletter by January 21th, 2019.

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