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January 2017

From the President


As January comes to a close, I’m already seeing 2017 as a year of change. If you attended our January chapter meeting, you may remember that we “shook up” the meeting format by adding a panel discussion. This was in response to your feedback and we plan to keep mixing it up.

I want to take a moment to acknowledge other big changes for NAPO-NY. Rebecca Wood and Sandra Schustack have resigned as members of the NAPO-NY board. On behalf of the chapter, thank you for your volunteer efforts and I appreciate everything you have done for NAPO-NY. All the best with your new title, “Mommies!”

Now I would like to welcome new board members Klara Carames (Director of Professional Development) and Erin Eggers (Secretary). We are looking forward to your contributions.

So whatever changes are happening for you in 2017, I wish you all the very best!

Collette Shine, NAPO-NY President

From the Board

The Nominating Committee has officially launched the process of recruiting candidates for the 2016-17 Board of Directors of NAPO-NY. Although the new board will not take office until May 15 of next year, we are getting started early because we’re anticipating more openings than usual.

If you are already a chapter volunteer, you know what a growth experience it is and how rewarding it is to volunteer. Being on the board is a great way to develop your leadership skills and to build life-long relationships with your colleagues.

If you would like to know more about what it means to be on the board and what the responsibilities of each position are, please reach out to a member of the Nominating Committee: Audrey Lavine (Chair), Sandra Schustack or Collette Shine.

Please note that Provisional Members cannot serve on the board. However, if you do plan on moving from Provisional to Professional Member by next May, then do not hesitate to have a conversation with us if you are interested.

Meetings and Events

February Chapter Meeting: Leveraging Your Expertise for Social Content Marketing
Monday, February 6, 6:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Cicatelli Associates, 505 Eighth Avenue, between 35th and 36th Streets, 20th floor

In this hour long session, Spark Growth's Executive Director of Social Media Lauren Karasek will teach you how to leverage your professional expertise to create the type of social media content that engages potential new clients without giving away your knowledge for free. She'll address best practices for creating content that resonates with social media audiences, tailoring content for use across social platforms, and tips and tools to find and connect with your audience.

Spark Growth is a growing agency committed to driving measurable results for clients. Lauren Karasek oversees social strategy for all of Spark Growth's clients, including content and community management, digital influencer engagement, social listening and landscape research, online executive thought leadership and paid social amplification. With over a decade of experience in this relatively young industry, Lauren has won more than a dozen awards for her outstanding social media campaigns and strategies.

First Step Organizing Workshop
Thursday, February 16, 1:30 p.m. – 4:15 p.m.
Coalition for the Homeless, 129 Fulton Street, near Nassau Street

The First Step Job Training Program is a program offered by the Coalition for the Homeless that prepares women to enter the workforce and earn a living wage. NAPO-NY presents organizing workshops 6 times a year as part of the program. If you would like to present at the workshop, you must first observe a workshop. If you are interested in volunteering or observing please contact Dorothy McNeill.

Book Club Meeting: “The Western Guide to Feng Shui”
Tuesday, April 4, 6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Barnes & Noble Cafe, 33 East 17th Street, north side of Union Square

This quarter, the NAPO-NY Book Club will be reading “The Western Guide to Feng Shui: Creating Balance, Harmony, and Prosperity in Your Environment“ by Terah Kathryn Collins. Read the book, then join us for a fun informal discussion! For more information please contact Mary Reed.

January Meeting Recap: Organizing Your Thoughts Around Money
The meeting began with a mini-panel on Kicking Off Your Business in 2017. Collette Shine moderated the panel, which included Klara Carames, Lisa Engstrom, and Rachel Sager.

The product spotlight this month was on Oxo, a company that makes containers and other household products.

This month’s program was presented by Liz Dederer. Liz is a sales trainer who works with clients to identify their relationship with money, and how they can use that information to earn more. The full meeting minutes can be found in the Document Library, accessed from the Members Only menu on the NAPO-NY website. (You must be logged in for Members Only access.)

Welcome New Members

Christy McDonald
Wendy Silberstein

Corporate Associates
Gerald Jones, Two Men and a Truck
James Lynch,

Member Media Mentions

Linda Birkinbine was featured in “Priorities and Goal Setting” on Family Life News.

Leslie Josel wrote “To Raise Take-Charge Kids, Ask a Simple Question” in Family Circle Magazine.

Junkluggers was featured in “Decluttering for the New Year” on The New Yorker.

Sharon Lowenheim was featured in “Tips for Your Post-Holiday Clutter Purge” on The New York Times, “Hacks to Make Your Tiny NYC Apartment Seem Bigger (Yes, It’s Possible)” on Thrillest, and “Downsizing? Make Your Move to a Smaller Home Seamless” on

Linda Samuels was featured in “Professional Goal-Setters Tell You How to Make Your Resolution Stick” on Atlas.

Volunteer Opportunities

The spotlight this month is on the NAPO-NY Times Editor, who is the writer of our monthly chapter newsletter.
The Editor creates and sends out the chapter newsletter which goes out to members every month. The Editor communicates with other chapter volunteers and with board members on a regular basis to gather this information. The Editor may also research and write original stories about chapter members and events if desired.
This is a great position for someone who likes to write and would enjoy the opportunity to get to know a lot of chapter members.
The NAPO-NY Times Editor reports to the Director of Marketing.
Other open positions:

  • Media Liaison
  • Press Release Distributor
  • Golden Circle Liaison
  • Programming Committee member
  • Webinar Planner
  • Professional Development Seminar team

To learn more about any of these positions, please contact NAPO-NY’s Volunteer Coordinator, Sharon Lowenheim.

Book Club Review: "Junk"

The NAPO-NY book club gathered on the morning of Sunday, January 22 to discuss Alison Stewart’s “Junk: Digging Through America’s Love Affair with Stuff.” Before we could even begin to analyze the book’s content, we were compelled to discuss the poor editing that discouraged several of us from finishing the book, even though it was full of interesting information. Stewart bounced around from topic to topic, touching on space junk and the etymology of the word “junk,” as well as analyzing junk-hauling companies in at least three different chapters. One member commented it was as if she’d googled the word “junk” and used the search results to choose her chapter titles. Junk mail, junk in the trunk, pack rats, and junk on TV: it’s all here.

The book was also riddled with typos and grammatical errors. It read like a first draft, as opposed to a finished investigative book, as though we were reading her notes. And although Stewart touched on every possible aspect of the concept of junk, she failed to find a common thread tying it all together. Readers agreed that her interviews were fascinating, and the depth of her research was laudable, but she lacked a central thesis to give clarity. At the end of the epilogue, Stewart admits that she still keeps things that she considers junk. “What will I do about it? I’m not sure. How about you?” Members strongly felt she should have started the book with this question, and attempted to answer it, instead of leaving us ankle-deep in a pile of anecdotes that we’re not quite sure what to do with.

However, the book was also full of good information, such as an analysis of the habits of pack rats (yes, they’re real animals) and these startling statistics on self-storage renters: “65 percent of all self-storage renters have a garage, 47 percent have an attic, and 33 percent have a basement, according to the Self Storage Association.”

The bottom line? “Junk” is a fun read, just don’t expect any firm answers to the problem of America’s love affair with stuff.

The NAPO-NY Book Club meets four times per year to discuss organizing-related books. Next quarter we’ll be reading “The Western Guide to Feng Shui: Creating Balance, Harmony, and Prosperity in Your Environment“ by Terah Kathryn Collins. Meeting will be held on Tuesday, April 4 at 6:30 p.m. Contact Mary Reed if you have any questions regarding the book club, or suggestions for future books.