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Leonidas Foundation Holds Women in Business Luncheon for IHA

All thirty-one members of the club heard from Denise Jarrett P’15, ’18, real estate agent and owner of Home Helpers LLC; Illana Raia, lawyer, lecturer, and founder of Etre; Frances Vagias, trustee for The Leonidas Foundation and owner of Waterside Restaurant; and Kathy McDermott P’20, tax partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers. Mrs. Christine Cabrera Capizzi’89, IHA Business teacher and Business Club moderator, and Mrs. Alice Nudelman, IHA information management specialist and Engineering teacher, joined the students at the exclusive event.

The luncheon, held at Waterside Restaurant in North Bergen, was geared toward cultivating interest in business, including both a panel discussion and networking session. The impressive panel of woman shared a wealth of experience and advice that proved to be very inspiring to our Business Club students.

The Leonidas Foundation was born to carry on the legacy of Leo Vagias, a Don Bosco Prep graduate who passed away in a tragic car accident on June 20, 2016 at the age of nineteen. Since its inception in July of 2016, The Leonidas Foundation has engaged in numerous charitable endeavors with tremendous success. In the last two years, the foundation has engaged in humanitarian efforts in response to natural disasters at home and abroad. Their mentors, especially successful businesswomen, have expressed a desire to extend their outreach in an effort to empower young women who have an interest in business. 

Mrs. Capizzi said that because a gap still exists in top leadership roles for women in business, events like this are so necessary to expose opportunities to our students. “If we want women in leadership roles in business, we need to get them thinking at a young age that it is possible,” she said. “As a business teacher and former professional in finance and accounting, I believe it is imperative to expose our young students to these opportunities. My hope is to inspire our students to believe that a woman’s place is anywhere she believes it to be.”

See the full photo album here; photos courtesy of Mrs. Alice Nudelman.