SDBJ Business Women of the Year Awards this November 13

SDBJ Business Women of the Year Awards this November 13

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Like many of us, Patti Roscoe has a story of observing San Diego as a tourist and coming the live here as a resident. She moved to the region from Buffalo, N.Y., in the mid-1960s.

In the time since, she became a top manager in the tourism industry and an integral part of the community.

Roscoe will be honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award on Wednesday, Nov. 13 during the 26th annual Business Women of the Year awards luncheon, organized by the San Diego Business Journal.

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Luncheon Is Nov. 13

Winners will be announced during the event, which will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront at 1 Park Blvd. downtown.

Carrie Stone will be the afternoon’s keynote speaker. She will discuss “Building Your Value and Brand for Boards.” Stone is president of cStone & Associates, a global executive search firm.

Holly Smithson will moderate a panel discussion on “Getting Women on Boards, Gaining Mentors and Becoming One.” Smithson is the CEO of Athena, a women’s empowerment organization that fast tracks women in STEM through leadership development.

Sponsors for the event are Kaiser Permanente, Marsh & McLennan Agency, Sony Electronics, Southwest Airlines, Union Bank and GreenRope.

Once again, the American Heart Association is charity partner for the event.

Lifetime Achievement

“I’m absolutely thrilled” to be getting the Lifetime Achievement Award, Roscoe said. “To get this kind of recognition at this point is really very exciting. A lot of people could get this award. There are so many people doing wonderful work.”

Roscoe worked in broadcast media in Buffalo, but switched to tourism on arriving in San Diego. She learned the visitor business — and about business in general — from an early boss and mentor, Martin Blatt. She ran her own destination management company from 1981 to 2007 and contributed to several causes and organizations in San Diego.

Now retired, she is still active in the community. Roscoe volunteers with San Diego State University, supporting its hospitality and tourism management program (which she co-founded) as well as musical theater and athletics. She also chairs its Stewardship Committee. Roscoe never got the chance to go to college; “I think I’m vicariously living my non-college experience,” she said with a grin.

Roscoe is a plank owner of the USS Midway Museum. She sits on the board of the Balboa Park Conservancy and is past president of the San Diego Rotary Club and a past chair of the San Diego Convention & Visitors Bureau (now the San Diego Tourism Authority).

Roscoe and her partner, Jim Tiffany, live in Bankers Hill. The couple enjoys walking and hiking in central San Diego. Her favorite quiet pastime is reading. Roscoe is reading “She Said” by Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey as well as “The Penguin Lessons” by Tom Michell.

‘Best Job in the World’

In her keynote speech, Carrie Stone will offer thoughts on getting more women onto boards. Stone has served on numerous boards and has worked in private equity as well as for large, consumer-facing companies. Her executive search practice is now 15 years old.

Stone said she plans to tailor her remarks for a wide audience, from the person just entering the workforce to more experienced executive. Going for a board job takes planning and marketing. Stone will discuss developing one’s “board superpowers” — that is, skills, strengths and experience. For example, she said, building a career in finance and public accounting may be one of the easiest paths to a board seat.

Stone is a North County resident who works with foster youth and has held board positions with the Young Presidents’ Organization, or YPO.

“I have the best job in the world,” she said recently about her executive search practice. “I get to add value to companies and the candidates that we recruit for the companies.” For candidates, she added, it is frequently a life-changing experience.



Chief Executive Officer, Athena

Holly Smithson is Athena’s Chief Executive Officer. Athena is a women’s empowerment organization that fast tracks women in STEM through leadership development. She previously served as VP, Business Strategy at the California Life Sciences Association, the industry’s largest statewide advocacy organization. Smithson also served as President and COO at Cleantech San Diego. She is a graduate of the Harvard Business School Executive Leadership Program and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in broadcast communications from East Carolina University.


Jane Finley

Senior Vice President & Area Manager, Kaiser Permanente

Jane Finley is Senior Vice President and Area Manager for Kaiser Permanente Health Plan and Hospitals in San Diego , including Kaiser Permanente’s two acute care hospitals. Jane joined Kaiser Permanente in 1984 at the Southern California Regional Offices in the Program Planning Department. Since that time she has held a variety of positions including, Director of Planning, Business Strategy & Finance Leader Tri-Central, Director of Hospital Operations Panorama City, and Service Area Manager of the Valleys Service Area.

Cheryl Goodman

Head of Corporate Communications & Social Corporate Responsibility, Sony Electronics

Cheryl Goodman is the Head of Corporate Communications and Social Corporate Responsibility at Sony Electronics and the appointed UN liason for Sustainable Goal five for gender equality on behalf of Sony Global. With over 20 years in the communications industry, her experience spans a variety of sectors including media, technology, and nonprofit organizations. Prior, Goodman was the Executive Director of Athena San Diego and founded several startup companies, as well as, led public relation functions at Qualcomm, Linspire and She has received many industry awards including,

PR Leader of the Year in 2010.

Carlee Harmonson

Managing Director, Union Bank

Carlee Harmonson has been with Union Bank since 2002. She is a veteran of the trust business and has over 25 years of experience in both Personal Trust and Employee Beneit Plans. She was formerly with First National Bank as well as Danielson Trust Company and its predecessor HomeFed Trust.

Carlee is a graduate of the University of California at Davis, where she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology. She also holds the professional designation “Certified Retirement Services Professional.”

Trindl Reeves

Principal, Marsh & McLennan Agency

Trindl Reeves serves as Chief Sales Officer for Marsh & McLennan Agency’s (MMA) West region. With over 25 years of experience in the insurance industry, Trindl’s leadership is grounded in her expertise in risk management and health and welfare consulting. She is responsible for leading the firm’s company-wide sales effort and has played a key role in the company’s rapid growth. She serves on the company’s management committee and MMA’s national strategic leadership team.