About Our Coauthors
Volume II
Dr. Emile Allen. Emile is a graduate of Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago, Illinois. He completed his general surgery internship and urology residency at the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics in Iowa City, Iowa. An accomplished surgeon, Emile built three successful private practices and was the chief of urology and vice chairman of surgery at Scripts Memorial Hospital, San Diego, California. Although he no longer uses his surgeon’s scalpel, Emile now heals through his inspirational speaking and writing. His life story, vividly described in his book, Eaten By The Tiger: Surrendering to an Empowered Life, is captivating and entertaining audiences nationwide. His book has received the Writer’s Digest and the Readers' Favorite International Book Awards. Emile’s laser-sharp lessons and his electrifying charisma teach us how to embrace our fears in order to live a more empowered life. Emile is a member of the National Speakers Association and lives in Boca Raton, Florida. He travels the globe, sharing his invaluable insights to improve the lives of those he touches. www.emileallen.com

Richard J. Anthony, Sr. Rick is the founder and managing director of The Anthony Group, Inc., a management consulting firm specializing in business advisory services, human resource management, and performance improvement. He is also founder of The Entrepreneurs Network, a venue for aspiring and serial entrepreneurs and angel investors; host of The Entrepreneurs Network TV; and co-host of The Entrepreneurs Network Radio. His book, Organizations, People and Effective Communication, is available on Amazon. r.anthonysr1@verizon.net.

Marian Axley. Marian moved to Florida in 1960 after graduating from college in Kentucky because her husband had been hired by an airplane engine manufacturer to do research on their engines. For the next fifteen years, her family’s life revolved around his job, and they traveled and lived in different states. In 1976, Marian’s husband died of cancer, and although she was not enthusiastic about a career, she took a job teaching art in her local high school. This enabled her to raise her two small children while staying at home with them as much as possible. Today, Marian is remarried and retired, and she spends her time lecturing, critiquing, and judging art shows. 

Janet S. Bales. Janet is a mother of three, a stepmother of three, a “nana” of ten grandchildren, and a newlywed to her husband of three years. Janet is a musician and at an early age she traveled on tour with America’s Youth in Concert and Janesville Symphony Orchestra, and recorded in Carnegie Hall in 1976 with the BBC. Her musical talents were useful in the local church where she served for twenty-three years as a worship team leader. In 2000 she was hired full-time as the programming music and arts minister at a church in Wisconsin where she served until retirement. Soon after handing in her resignation, she developed colon cancer. The following year was spent in chemo until she successfully beat the disease. Janet now serves as the director of Tychicus Ministries, Inc., an organization she formed with her husband, Peter. They travel extensively, supporting missionaries on the field by keeping them healthy so they can be effective in the area they are serving. www.tychicusministries.org

Anne Bennett-Bready. Anne is a parent of a child with autism and she wears the title of "super mom" with pride. She has been married for eighteen years and is a full-time certified dental assistant. She currently resides with her husband and son in Jupiter Farms, Florida. She is a lifetime member of Weight Watchers. She is in the process of starting up a support group for parents with autistic teenagers. She loves to use writing as a creative outlet, and she believes in being healthy in all three areas: mind, sprit, and body. She is fifty-one, but thinks that age is only a number. Hope and faith are two things that often get her through the day.  

Edith Bergman. Edith Bergman was born in Brooklyn, New York, and her current hometown is Fall River, Massachusetts. She has three children: Shelley, Larry, and Eric. Bergman moved from Fall River to Hollywood, Florida, in 1969 and taught kindergarten and second grade at Sheridan Hills Elementary. She retired in 1990 and volunteered in various schools and libraries. Bergman joined the Life Learning Program at Nova Southeastern University in 1997 as a student and a part-time instructor. She is currently a resident of Brookdale Senior Living. www.brookdaleliving.com

Inez Bracy, MS, CNLP, CGC. Inez is a lifestyle coach, speaker, award-winning author, and radio and TV personality who helps women rejuvenate, reinvent, and redefine their life. Inez started her coaching business in 2005 to help women deal with the overwhelming prospect of starting a new life in their boomer years. As the creator of “SPICE” (Sassy-Phenomenal-Inspired-Conscious-Empowered) women, Inez believes that each woman has the right to unleash her femininity and live the life of joy she desires. She is a frequent guest on the Fox 4 Morning Blend as their career coach, giving tips to help boomers successfully navigate the workplace. She is a columnist for the Coastal Breeze newspaper and Senior Stuff. www.thebracygroup.com

Estelle Berk. Estelle was born and raised in Bronx, New York. She completed high school at fifteen years old. Prior to getting married and raising a family, she was an accessories buyer for a prestigious firm in Manhattan. She was also an executive secretary for many different employers throughout her working years including Max Factor in Hollywood, CA and Florida National Bank. She loved to travel with a special love for French language and culture. Estelle was an avid reader, enjoyed ballet and theater, and was socially active with a many close friends. Having undergone open heart surgery at age 50, she had continued interest in Mended Hearts as well as ongoing fundraisers for the American Heart Association. She had a great love of children and spent time mentoring them as well as being a longtime supporter of St. Jude Children's Hospital. Estelle also had the debilitating condition of Essential Tremor which had an ongoing impact on her. Although the tremor limited her involvement in some activities, she never let it prevent her from living life to its fullest. She frequently reached out to others experiencing difficult times by being a group leader for Recovery, Inc. for many years. She was passionate in her hope for a cure for Essential Tremor and donated her brain to Columbia University's Research Dept for that purpose. Estelle was a nurturing mother, committed friend, loving grandmother, and had a zest for life. Going forth with Optimism during life's many challenges was how she chose to live her life. Estelle was a resident of Brookdale Senior Living until her passing in March, 2014. www.brookdaleliving.com

Christina Callahan. Christina received her bachelor's degree in English in 2012 from Fairfield University. She enjoys writing and going to the beach with her yellow lab, PJ. Christina resides in Fairfield, Connecticut, with her family. www.therusticmermaid.tumblr.com

Roger Cannon. Roger writes as often as possible, still loves Wisconsin White Pines, and lives happily in San Pedro, California with his wife, Sherri, and their two cats.

Michael Carlon. Michael is a qualitative research professional who engages consumers in highly personal conversations about the products they buy and the services they seek. Michael’s success as a researcher is based on his ability to make people feel comfortable expressing their thoughts, experiences, and emotions in a variety of settings. Michael publishes articles multiple times per year in industry publications and is an active contributor to his local newspaper, The Stamford Advocate. Additionally, he runs a successful blog and podcast both entitled Uncorking a Story. In 2011, Mike published One Last Round, his first novel. Mike lives in Stamford, Connecticut, with his wife Nicole and their triplets. He has a degree in psychology from the University of Connecticut and a master's degree in business administration from Fairfield University where he also designed and taught a course on Internet marketing. www.vertigopartners.com

Gay Cartier. Gay is a recovery coach, addiction counselor, master NLP practitioner, and the founder of Addiction Recovery International in Sydney, Australia. Her services include providing telephone and online recovery coaching and addiction counseling within her trademark system called the New Life Recovery Program. The New Life Recovery Program was founded specifically for addicts and their partners, family members, and friends. 

Sunny Chayes. Sunny is the Media Personality for Universal Broadcasting Network, GWEN Network, and GWEN T.V. On her shows “Singin’ in the Rain” and “The Personal to the Universal,” she chats with directors, peace advocates, politicians, musicians, and international sages of all kinds. The shows discuss topics to intend enlightenment, education and Spiritual Activism using conversation, humor, and music. Sunny was also an award-winning clothing and costume designer as well as a dancer and sacred singer. She was born in Chicago to Nancy Lee and Stewart, has two sons, and lives in Los Angeles, California.

Claudette Chenevert. Claudette is the founder of Coaching Steps LLC and is a certified master stepfamily foundation coach specializing in stepfamily relationships and conflict resolution. She has a degree in psychology of communication and is a member of the International Coach Federation and the International Positive Psychology Association. She has been a stepmother for over twenty-two years and a mom for over twenty-eight years. Whether speaking, leading workshops and seminars, writing, or networking, she shares the tools that have enabled her own family to thrive. www.StepmomCoach.com.

Thomas Collins. Thomas is from Smithtown, New York. He is nineteen years old and lives at home with his parents Tom and Margaret, his sister Sarah, and their dog Brett. He graduated from Chaminade High School in Mineola. He is presently a biology major at SUNY Geneseo in upstate New York. He is enjoying his time in school and is looking forward to the future.

Jennifer Cutler Lopez. Jenny was born and raised in Newfoundland, Canada, and resides in Virginia. She is working on her book American Scars: Stories on Display. American Scars combines photography and uplifting biographical essays to reveal the stories of people and their physical scars.

Nancy Ferrari. Nancy is the radio host of The Nancy Ferrari Show on W4CY Radio The Intertainment Network, and she is also a life empowerment coach, an author, a speaker and a contributing writer for numerous publications. Nancy is a coauthor of the bestselling book, Selling With Synchronicity. She is also the founder of Nancy Ferrari Media & Mentoring, providing media and mentoring programs to attain personal and professional success, utilizing her signature coaching programs based on the principles within her book Discover the Essence of You. www.nancyferrari.com. 

Ernest Field. Ernest Field is from Vienna, Austria. He is survived by his wife, Kitty, of sixty years. They have two boys and thirteen grandchildren. They also have fifty great grandchildren. Kitty Field is originally from Bochum, Germany. Both Ernest and Kitty are Holocaust survivors who have amazing stories and accounts of their lives leading up to, during, and after their concentration camp experiences. 

Hayley Foster. Hayley is a married mother of three who says that nothing will teach you more about yourself than raising children. Her mission is to bring as much good into the world as possible. She has helped hundreds of clients—including speakers, CEOs, educators, and astronauts—find the perfect combination of who they are and what resonates best with their audiences. www.shorttalkexpert.com.

Allison Frattaroli. Allison is seventeen years old and a junior at St. Luke's School in Darien, Connecticut. She is also an active ambassador for Kids Helping Kids in Stamford, Connecticut. www.kidshelpingkidsct.org

Sally Gates. Sally is the mother of two children, Carey Braga and Matthew Gates, and she has three grandchildren: Isabelle Braga, Zachary Braga, and Harper Gates. Sally was raised in Swansboro, North Carolina, and graduated from Sacred Heart College. After marriage she lived in the greater Kansas City area and was a social worker. After completing a master’s degree in gerontology, she spent several years consulting and teaching at local universities. Sally has been employed by HCR Manor Care in Florida since 1991 as a regional director and an administrator of a skilled nursing facility.

Barbara Gelston. Barbara lives in Stamford, Connecticut, with her husband, Art, who graduated from Fairfield University in 1961. They have two children, Nancy Dobos and Tom, both of whom also graduated from Fairfield University. Barbara and Art have been married for forty-four years. Barbara and Art both enjoy gardening, golfing, visiting their vacation home on the North Carolina Outer Banks, and spending time with friends and family.

Dr. Colleen Georges. Colleen has been serving as a counselor and coach for over 15 years, helping to guide individuals through self-discovery and personal and career goal achievement. Today, she owns Colleen’s Career Creations and Life Coaching with Colleen, where she provides career and life coaching services, writes résumés for clients across the professional spectrum, facilitates professional development workshops, and runs wellness and support groups, including the Contagious Optimism Wellness Group and Moms Helping Moms Support Group. Colleen is also a faculty member at Rutgers University where she teaches graduate-level counseling and undergraduate women’s leadership courses. She received her doctorate in counseling psychology from Rutgers University, is a nationally certified psychologist and NJ licensed professional counselor, and holds over a dozen certifications in positive psychology, positive parenting, life and career coaching, résumé writing, and job search. Her publications include co-authorship in Contagious Optimism: Uplifting Stories & Motivational Advice for Positive Forward Thinking, 101 Great Ways to Enhance Your Career, scholarly psychology journals, and The Gallery of Best Resumes, 5th Edition. Colleen has been quoted in Forbes.com, CandidCareer.com, InspireMeToday.com, SuperChangeYourLife.com, and The Trenton Times. www.ColleenGeorges.com. ​

Dr. Donald E. Gibson, Ph.D. Donald is the dean and professor of management at the Dolan School of Business at Fairfield University. He teaches courses in leadership and teams and managing people for competitive advantage to undergraduate and graduate students. Donald's research examines organizational role models, emotions in management, anger in the workplace, and conflict management. He has articles published in Organization Science, Journal of Management, Journal of Vocational Behavior, Academy of Management Perspectives, and Journal of Business Ethics, and he has also published in a book for practicing managers, Managing Anger in the Workplace. Donald received his master's degree in business administration and Ph.D. from UCLA, and was previously a professor in organizational behavior at Yale. Prior to entering academia, Donald worked in the entertainment industry in Los Angeles, managing post-production and distribution for television shows and motion pictures at Lorimar Productions.

Fred Gill. Fred joined the Metro-North Railroad of New York in 1984. He has held several positions, and he is currently responsible for the identification and development of potential employees. Fred has partnered with Gateway Community College in New Haven, Connecticut, where he was instrumental in developing an associate degree in rail engineering technology. Fred also partnered with Connecticut Technical High Schools and various New York City organizations to develop curricula to support the technical need for qualified electrical employees. Fred is an active member of various civic and community organizations, and was recently appointed the chair of the Connecticut Business Advisory Council.

Larry Glenz. Larry is the author of Forgiving Kevin: A Son’s Addiction Becomes a Father’s Greatest Teacher. He served as a high school history teacher and athletic coach in Long Island, New York, for thirty-six years. As a travel tour group leader, he supervised hundreds of teenagers to destinations in Europe, Australia, Asia, and Africa. Larry received his ordination as a reverend for his church, Pathways of Light, in 2008.  

Laura Graham. Laura is a high school senior in Oakland, California, and she is hoping to attend the University of Arizona and study business. With the help of family, Laura has clothed thousands of teenagers, helping them return to the classroom and feel better about themselves. 

William Goldberger. William is a retired professional engineer and former vice president of research at a company that manufactures highly specialized industrial products. He is a named inventor on twenty-five U.S. patents and has published technical papers and articles in the field of chemical and metallurgical processing. 

Melody Goodspeed. Melody suffered health complications that caused her to lose her vision in 2003. Prior to her vision loss at the age of twenty-six, Melody was a special education teacher. Her fight to regaining and sculpting her life has given her a new perspective on what is truly important in life, and she is grateful to God for all the gifts He has given, including a loving husband, motherhood, family, friends, and a new career. 

Bharath Gopalan. Bharath has master's degrees in psychology and human resource management. He steers the learning and development practices in a cement-major in India. He holds certifications in NLP, psychometric profiling, quality management systems and is deemed by the Government of India as a national resource person to conduct trainers’ training courses. Bharath writes articles for business magazines. He is presently working on a book on career building for McGraw-Hill. He has recently authored a book titled Break Your Boundaries, a compendium of some of the best books on personal excellence.

Jim and Rachel Harper. Jim was born on November 4, 1925, in Jacksonville, Florida, where he grew up with his parents and four brothers. His father was a flight instructor in World War I and his mother was a native of Louisiana. For three years during World War II Jim served in the US Navy as a radio operator. After the war he returned home and enrolled at the University of North Carolina, where he graduated with a degree in geology. Rachel Wilkerson was born in Rome, Georgia, on the same date as her husband four years earlier on November 4, 1921. Her father Dewey Wilkerson owned a coal business in Rome, where Rachel grew up. In high school, Rachel played basketball and softball and was a star athlete on both teams. After graduating high school Rachel took a job doing clerical work at a local hospital. At the beginning of World War II, Rachel started working at a Navy Flight School at Auburn University. The Harpers are residents of Brookdale Senior Living. www.brookdaleliving.com 

Joel Heller. Joel worked in the insurance industry for twenty-five years in various underwriting and management positions. He left the insurance industry in 2010 to open a retail clothing, jewelry, and gift shop in Vermont. Joel has a bachelor's degree from Fairfield University and resides with his wife in New Hampshire.

Christine Henchar Reed, M.A., M.Div. Christine graduated from Fairfield University, where she majored in politics and minored in religious studies. She was awarded the Harry S. Truman Scholarship for dedication to public service and academic excellence. Christine has dedicated her career to public service, working for public TV, assisting people with disabilities, and serving in ministry. She has a master's degree in religion from Vanderbilt University and a master of divinity from Vanderbilt Divinity School. She has served as a campus minister at Vanderbilt University, as a chaplain at Converse College in Spartanburg, South Carolina, and as a pastoral counselor Cumberland Heights in Nashville, Tennessee. She resides in Franklin, Tennessee, with her husband Roland and their two beloved cats, Tipper and Bob.

Elke Hennecke. Elke currently works as an administrative assistant at a medical office. She lives in Glen Cove, New York, with her partner since 2010. When not working, she likes to decorate their abode to make it pleasing and peaceful. This includes meaningful pieces, photos, and furry friend rescue animals named Tashi, Jessie, Lucas, Esmer, Nikki, Minnie, and Barbarino.

John Brantley Hooks, IV. John is the founder and chief content officer of The WWRG Networks, a global network of high-profile women on five continents and in thirty-six countries. Through social media and hosted events, they are able to “connect” with others who share their positive forward thinking lifestyle. John is also the chief executive officer of DMM, LLC, a management consulting practice that provides strategic advice to entrepreneurs in emerging technology and funding. wealthywomensresourceguide-jbhiv@yahoo.com.  

Kimberlee M. Hooper, M.Ed. Kimberlee works in the field of higher education where she directs the School Relations office at Middlesex County College in Edison, New Jersey. With over ten years of experience in the field of education, she finds great joy in helping others achieve their educational goals. Kim earned her bachelor of arts and master of education degrees from the University of Virginia.

Sherry Hursey. Sherry co-owns Smile TV and is an award-winning actress, writer, and producer. Most recognized as Ilene from the hit series Home Improvement, Sherry has an extensive list of credits from stage to screen. A vocalist and voice artist, Sherry can be heard in over a hundred films including Shrek, Madagascar, Polar Express, and Monsters vs. Aliens. Following her passion for music, children, and positive programming, Sherry produced and starred in the uplifting family musical, Lilly’s Light, for Public TV, advocating for displaced and foster youth. Her heart and talents are now fully expressing through Smile TV. www.smiletvgroup.com

Eileen Keller. Eileen is a single mom of two children and lives in Chicago, Illinois. She graduated from the University of Rhode Island with a bachelor's degree in psychology. Eileen works at AT&T as a senior technical team leader. She leads a team of project managers and is certified as a project management professional. 

Jerry Kelly. Jerry is a licensed massage therapist and canine caretaker in his hometown of Massapequa Park, New York. He has been on the Self Transformation Path for over twenty years, studying multiple religions and new thought technologies. He meditates two to three hours per day and believes that world peace will happen when individual inner peace is achieved.

​Nancy Koenig. Nancy is an author, speaker, certified life coach and EFT Practitioner who motivates others to stretch beyond illusory limitations, follow their deepest passions and reach their highest aspirations. After enjoying what was once her dream career as a writer for the National Hockey League (including NHL.com), Nancy left the world of sports to coach clients from addiction to empowerment. Today, she leads women through weight loss, smoking cessation and other goals while helping them dramatically improve the most important and often most neglected relationship of their lives: the one with self. Excerpts from Nancy’s first book, a novel about relationships that subtly doubles as a personal development guide, can be sampled at NameMyNovel.com. www.timeforprosperity.com. www.nancykoenig.com. 

Liisa Kyle, Ph.D. Liisa is the go-to coach for smart, creative people who want to overcome challenges, get organized, get things done, and get more out of life. She has coached individuals, facilitated groups, and delivered inventive workshops on four continents. Liisa Kyle has published books about happiness, goal setting, and overcoming perfectionism. She cofounded The DaVinci Dilemma, an online community devoted to helping multitalented people. www.DaVinciDilemma.com

Krystian Leonard. Krystian is a high school junior who wrote her first children’s book Shining Scars at age fifteen as a way to teach healing and promote character for children healing with visible scars. Krystian experienced firsthand the trials and self-esteem issues associated with visible scars. She overcame her self-image and entered her first beauty pageant at the age of fourteen and then entered the Miss America Scholarship Organization at the age of fifteen. After developing and creating the Shining S.C.A.R.S. organization, Krystian has been able to use her personal experience to reach out to children and teens with physical scars and teach them self-acceptance. www.shiningscars.org

Barry L. Lindstrom. Barry is a maverick adaptive design scientist offering unique and innovative solutions to individuals and organizations. He authored hundreds of nonfiction papers, user manuals, and presentations for those confused by complexity and wearied by the pace of change. Barry’s first significant work of fiction is Considering SomeplacElse. He continues to count his blessings with his life partner, Melinda, in suburban Arizona and places thirty-nine remarkable years of marriage, three outstanding children, and six wondrous grandchildren at the top of his list. www.soiwrotethisbook.com 

Paul R. Lipton. Paul is author of Hour of the Wolf: An Experiment in Ageless Living. Paul is a graduate of Penn State University with a bachelor's degree in political science and a Juris Doctor graduate degree from Washington University Law School in St. Louis. Paul is a frequent speaker on the topics of living a balanced life in a world that seems out of balance. Paul currently resides in Boulder, Colorado.

Deborah Littlejohn. Deborah has spent the past three years working as a certified home health care aide. She was a girl scout, cheerleader, and homecoming queen. She received her Secretarial of Science certification from Taylor Business Institute.

Lee Lively-Garcia, CPM. Lee is the president of One Great Kid, Inc. Lee is currently working in corporate banking as a business analyst and project manager and lives in Florida. Lee has a wonderful husband and a phenomenal son. Lee has held various positions as a daycare teacher, peer coach/trainer, project manager, and has owned her own business in her over twenty-five-year career. Lee’s philosophies on life come from many life trials she has experienced, which include being jobless and nearly homeless, morbid obesity, and breast cancer. Lee feels it is important to learn from these challenges in order to grow stronger and empower ourselves to meet future challenges that come our way.

Karen Lyons Kalmenson. Karen is a poet, blogger, animal and human rights activist, who has contributed her rhymes to many places, many causes, and in the process, made friends worldwide and touched many hearts. She finds a rhyme and a laugh almost everywhere she looks. fayely10@aol.com

Cynthia Makris. Cynthia has been an opera singer for thirty years, and throughout her career, she has sung almost every leading role written for a soprano. Critics have praised not only the beauty of her voice, but also the honesty, integrity, and depth of her portrayals. www.cynthiamakris.com

Alan A. Malizia. Alan attended Sacred Heart University in Bridgeport, Connecticut, and earned a bachelor's degree in mathematics and a master's degree in education. His professional experience included corporate positions with companies such as Walden Books. Then he shifted gears to teaching, his true passion. Alan taught at Our Lady of Fatima in Wilton, Connecticut, and then at Stamford Catholic High School in Stamford, Connecticut, where he ultimately became a renowned coach for the girls volleyball team. He earned Connecticut Coach of the Year in 1988 and was selected for the Connecticut Volleyball Hall of Fame in 2007. Alan wrote two self-published books: "The Little Red Chair," an autobiography about his life experience with polio and "A View From The Quiet Corner," a selection of his poems and reflections. Alan received book awards from the USA Book News National in 2009 and was the International Book Award finalist in poetry for the inspirational category and winner in the religious category in 2010. amalizia1@ct.metrocast.net 

Charles Markman. Charles started creating cartoons in grammar school and high school. He worked as an apprentice cartoonist while going to night school. During his three-year army stint he was able to get his drawings and cartoons into several army publications. He went back to school after returning home from war. Charles then started working in the commercial art field as a graphic designer. Many of his cartoons have been published. Charles never really retired; he is still drawing cartoons today. Charles is a resident of Brookdale Senior Living. www.brookdaleliving.com 

David R. Martin. David has worked as a wealth manager with many top global financial institutions. In 1995, David joined Smith-Barney as a financial advisor. His successes at Smith-Barney led him to join UBS Financial Services as vice president of investments in 1998, where he managed portfolios with assets of more than $70 million. In 2006, David founded Quantflow Strategies LLC, with a current client and physicist, and together they developed a unique investment platform. In early 2011, David founded his own wealth management firm, INDX Strategies. www.indxstrategies.com. 

Richard Masterson. Rich Masterson is a serial entrepreneur who, at age twenty-five, became the first business-to-business advertiser on Prodigy Interactive Personal Service, a joint venture of IBM and Sears that was the forerunner to the World Wide Web. He was named Inc. Magazine’s “Entrepreneur of the Year” for his innovative use of technology, and went on to be the founder of US Interactive, an early web consulting business. After US Interactive had a successful IPO, Rich became a philanthropist and real estate developer. He is a graduate of James Madison University and the executive education program at Harvard Business School, and was the first Entrepreneur in Residence at The University of Pennsylvania Wharton School of Business. He resides in suburban Philadelphia.

Diane May. Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Diane has lived in Florida for the past forty-three years. She has been a teacher and librarian, and has also worked in special education. Diane also spent time in India and organized a library there for children. She also wrote two conference show scripts, The Children Are Our Future and Christmas is for The Birds. She wrote her nonfiction work, The Wealth of Wholeness, while setting up Seventh Heaven Education, a nonprofit organization. She also wrote The Cosmic Spirit for high school kids. Most of these endeavors took place prior to Diane’s stroke over ten years ago. Diane is a resident of Brookdale Senior Living. www.brookdaleliving.com 

Patrick McKay. Patrick is a fitness consultant based in Jupiter, Florida. He helps people of all ages and fitness levels improve their quality of life and achieve long-term results through common sense nutrition, challenging cardio routines, and constantly varied workouts. He is certified through the National Strength and Conditioning Association and is also as a golf fitness instructor through the Titleist Performance Institute. When he is not at the gym, Patrick enjoys playing basketball and tennis, as well as surfing and snowboarding. Patmckay1@aol.com 

Karie Lynn Millspaugh. Karie was born and raised in Michigan as one of five children. She has always found herself to be a natural leader in many roles throughout her life. She currently resides with her beautiful daughter in Las Vegas, Nevada, where she recruits business coaches for a global organizations. She also coaches others on personal development and finding their own source of happiness and well-being.  

Fred Moore. Fred was born in 1920 in New York. At age three, his parents moved to Paris, France. Fred attended French grade schools and then returned to the US in 1937. He served in the Navy during World War II as an interpreter in Normandy. Fred then went on to college at Rutgers University, class of 1948, and earned a bachelor’s of science degree, an art degree, a master's degree. Fred taught secondary school for three years in New Jersey. After teaching, he purchased a home furnishing business and later moved to Florida where he owned and managed a motel. After a bout with cancer, he ran a real estate management business. His public service has included being president of the Chamber of Commerce in Millburn, New Jersey; president of a Florida Ostomy Support Group; and president of Friends Of Ostomates Worldwide, a USA group that collects unused ostomy supplies and distributes them to needy ostomates in third-world countries. He also served on the board of directors of a local Florida AIDS support organization. Fred is a resident of Brookdale Senior Living. www.brookdaleliving.com

Kerry Flynn Moeykens. Kerry is a veteran teacher. She has degrees from the University of Vermont and the University of Cincinnati. She is currently living in Kentucky and working in the financial industry. Her hobbies include spending time with her three children, working on light home renovation, and writing.

Gavin Morris. Gavin was born on August 24, 2009, to Chad and Tosha Morris and is the older brother of Greyson, who was born on August 15, 2011. In May 2012, Gavin had what the doctors thought was an ear infection. When the ear infection cleared up, but the pain continued, a CT scan and bone marrow biopsy confirmed everyone's worst fears: Gavin had stage IV neuroblastoma. This was a devastating diagnosis, but Gavin and his family are determined and are ready to fight. Tosha graduated from Ripley High School and obtained her registered nurse degree from Fairmont State University. Chad graduated from Grafton High School, West Virginia, and is currently pursuing his bachelor's degree in information technology at Western Governors University. The family currently resides in the Philadelphia area to be close to Gavin’s hospital, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. For more information on Gavin and neuroblastoma, visit www.BeGavinStrong.org.  

Merry Nachemin, LCSWR. Merry was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. She went to Brooklyn College and then New York University's School of Social Work. Following thirty years as a social worker, with the last twenty as an administrator, Merry shifted gears and started her dream business: She became an image consultant and makeup artist. Now, she helps her clients change from the outside in as she participates in their metamorphoses.

Alison Nancye. Alison has made it her life's work to inspire others to go after what they want in life. As an author, speaker, and media spokesperson, she encourages people to take positive action in their lives. She is the author of several nonfiction self-development books and also her new novel Note to Self. 

Navid Nazemian. Navid is a global human resources professional who has worked for world-class organizations such as Adidas, General Electric, BAT and Roche. Navid has delivered numerous speeches, training workshops, and keynote presentations at management conferences and training facilities across Europe, Asia and Middle East. He is a member of Harvard Business Reviews’ Advisory Council and McKinsey's Executive Panel. He is author of several published articles on management and leadership and has co-authored the books,  Interimsmanagement and HR Service Management. Navid has a master’s degree in international management from Hamburg University of Applied Sciences, Germany, and is a trained principled negotiator at Harvard Law School in Cambridge. Navid currently lives in Basel, Switzerland.  Follow Navid on Twitter @NavidNazemian.

Peter Nicholls. Peter Nicholls is a lifestyle mentor, and he goes by the title “Australia’s People Gardener.” This nickname stems from his thirty years of experience working in parks and recreation, as well as his belief that nature can teach us about personal growth and development. Nicholls’ extensive experience in recreational planning has given him deep insights into positive human behavior and optimism. He lives in Adelaide, Australia, and enjoys choir singing and social golf. peter@australiaspeoplegardener.com.au

Ester Nicholson. Ester is an author, an Agape International-licensed spiritual therapist, a motivational speaker, and an inspirational recording artist who brings twenty-five years of sobriety and spiritual teachings to audiences around the globe. Ester host shows on Hay House Radio and Unity Online Radio, facilitates workshops, and gives keynote addresses. Her book, Soul Recovery: 12 Keys to Healing Addiction, is based on spiritual principles and a progressive Twelve-Step recovery process. Ester resides in Nashville, Tennessee. www.esternicholson.com

Melinda Petroff. Melinda lives in Bridgeport, West Virginia, with her husband Joe and two children, Isabella and Jonathan. She received a bachelor's degree in accounting, marketing, and finance at Fairmont State University and later a master's degree in business administration from West Virginia University. She is the current chief financial officer and president of Supply Solutions, LLC. She is active in her school fundraising efforts and community events. Melinda is the aunt of Gavin Morris, who has stage IV neuroblastoma. She assists the family with their website, YouTube videos, Facebook group, and fundraising efforts for Gavin.  

Barbara Rady Kazdan. Widely known for directing Ashoka’s US program of leading social entrepreneurs, Barbara is the founder and principal consultant at Achieving Change Together and the strategic development officer at Parents Alliance. Barbara created a literacy awareness campaign that became a national initiative, and she has chaired city, state, and national planning groups. She founded the Houston READ Commission, the Mayor’s literacy agency, launching thirteen technology learning centers and changing public policy to support community-based programs. She cofounded InFOCUS to help low-income families access eye care. Barbara earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Michigan and completed the Jones Graduate School of Administration at Rice University. As a certified JobsOver50 career coach, Barbara helps individuals shift into nonprofit careers. www.achievingchangetogether.com 

Sandy Pedeflous. Sandy, coowner of Smile TV, is a thirty-year veteran of the entertainment industry and has worked behind the scenes in all aspects of production including producing, production coordinating, and post-production supervising. Sandy graduated cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in radio, television, and film, from California State University Northridge, and used her creative expertise to build her own editing business developing industrial video productions. Sandy is also the co-owner of two companies, Omegasonics, a manufacturing company, and UltraCare, a service business. At a young age Sandy had a dream to create a positive news show. She made this dream become a reality with Smile TV, an all-positive media network producing video for the soul purpose of smiling. www.smiletvgroup.com 

Susyn Reeve. Susyn is the bestselling author of The Inspired Life: Unleashing Your Mind’s Capacity for Joy. She has forty years of experience as an international leadership development coach, and she is a life mentor and interfaith minister. Susyn has honed an ability to guide others in seeing and ultimately experiencing the gifts in life. Susyn is the co-host of the popular weekly radio show, The On Purpose Show: Your Path to Fulfilling LifeWork. www.SusynReeve.com

Vaneetha Rendall. Vaneetha is a freelance writer, currently working on a memoir about her childhood. She previously worked in the fields of marketing and finance for Gartner Group, Sara Lee, and Bank of Boston. Ms. Rendall has a bachelor's degree in commerce from the University of Virginia and a master's degree in business administration from Stanford Graduate School of Business. She currently lives in Raleigh with her two daughters, Katie and Kristi, and speaks frequently on the topic of overcoming adversity. www.danceintherain.com 

Shane J. Repmann. Shane Repmann has a strong background in sales. After a decade of being a top producer, he returned to higher education in order to pursue a bachelor's degree in psychology. After obtaining degree, Shane jumped right into graduate school, and he is currently pursuing his master's degree and state certification in school counseling at Rutgers University. 
J. Todd Rhoad. Todd is the managing director of BT Consulting, an Atlanta-based business and career consulting firm. He is a public speaker and the author of the book, Blitz the Ladder: A team-based approach for getting ahead in business. Todd is the founder of MBAWriters®, a global team of MBA graduates who want to share their experiences to help other MBAs become more successful in their career. He holds a master’s degree in engineering from the Missouri School of Science and Technology and a master's degree in business administration from Indiana Wesleyan University. todd.rhoad@blitzteamconsulting.com

Patricia Rose. Patricia was born and raised in New York, and is an optimist and animal lover. She has experienced many difficult things in her life, including overcoming addiction, two near death experiences due to violence from men, and dealing with the death of her newborn daughter. However, she has defied odds and has chosen to live a happy, fulfilling, and healthy life. Patricia currently works in the healthcare field, and she also works as a site manager and writer for MommysDirtyLittleSecret.com, which is a blog for adults.

Susan Ross. Susan’s career spans twenty years in business education, new business launch and development, business growth consulting, sales training, speaking, and team building. She has worked with more than 500 businesses. Susan launched a private business college, which achieved national accreditation and approval from the U.S. Department of Education. The college specialized in training people to become entrepreneurs and sales professionals, a journey that allowed Susan to participate in hundreds of career and business launches. After selling her college in 2005, Susan shifted her passion from teaching students to working in business by founding Blue Ocean Business Coaching and Masterminds. www.blueoceancoaching.com

Joan Rubinstein. Joan lives in Long Beach, New York. A graduate of Hofstra University’s Drama Department, she has spent many years involved with Regional Theater on Long Island, participating with and starring in as many as one hundred shows. 

Jacquelyn Saad. Jackie is president of Inter-Change Consulting Inc., a full-service human resources and organizational development consulting firm specializing in change and problem management. Projects have included human resources program development, coaching of key executives, business closure, merger and acquisition support, employee fraud investigation, organizational redesign, team building, and employment dispute mediation in Canada and the US. inter-change@rogers.com 

Arnold Sarrow. Arnold was born in New York City. He moved to Huntington, New York, when he was eight years old, and the family ran a grocery store business there for many years. Arnold eventually left college to enlist as a private after the Pearl Harbor bombing, and he became a fighter pilot. He flew 101 combat missions and sorties, and obtained several letters of achievement from France, Australia, and the Czech Republic. Since that time, Arnold has experienced many personal and professional achievements. He values family, friends, and his time in the Sunshine State. Arnold is a resident of Brookdale Senior Living. www.brookdaleliving.com

​Ira Scott. Ira is a certified master practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming, is certified in Neo-Ericksonian Hypnosis, and a member of The American Board of Hypnotherapy. He is also certified in “Belief Craft - Knowledge Engineering and Sleight of Mouth" and is a certified practitioner of The Havening Techniques - a psychosensory therapy. Ira has also studied Strategic Intervention and Human Needs Psychology. Ira empowers clients to take measurable action for positive, lasting, and empowering personal growth. Ira is a member of the Society of NLP, the International Coach Federation, and The Long Island Coaching Alliance. www.leanintolife.com

Arthur Scalzo. Arthur is a retired U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration special agent, who conducted investigations and para-military operations in countries like Philippines, Peru, and Bolivia. Arthur retired from the DEA in 2002, after thirty years of service. Following his retirement, he served as a line detective and commanding officer of the Suffolk County NY District Attorney’s Insurance Crime Bureau. From January 2007 to January 2008, Arthur also served in Iraq as a civilian criminal investigator embedded with the US Army 4th Brigade, 1st Infantry Division. He identified and brought to justice terrorists involved in the manufacturing and placement of IEDs that were targeting U.S. and Coalition Forces in Baghdad. He was decorated by the US Army for his actions in Iraq. He has also served in the US Secret Service and the US Immigration and Naturalization Service. Arthur graduated from the American University in D.C., where he earned a bachelor of science degree in the administration of justice. He is married and has four children and two grandchildren.

Lee E. Shilo. Lee holds a nine-to-five job and has a passion for writing. He has a variety of published books and ebooks. Contributing to Contagious Optimism has been a pleasure for him. He lives on Vancouver Island in Victoria City, British Columbia. www.shilocom.com, leeshilo@yahoo.com 

Sophie Skover. Sophie is an author, a holistic life coach and an inspirational speaker. She started her own company, LSS Harmony Life Coaching, to help others experience harmony in their lives. She works with clients, conducts workshops, and encourages us to grow into the most impressive version of ourselves. www.LSSHarmony.com

Amy Spencer. Amy is the author of The Happy Life Checklist: 654 Simple Ways to Find Your Bliss (Perigee, 2014); Bright Side Up: 100 Ways to Be Happier Right Now, which was recommended by O, The Oprah Magazine; and the "dating optimism" guide Meeting Your Half-Orange, which Harper’s Bazaar called “the ultimate pep-talk.” Amy is a journalist who has written for Glamour, Redbook, Real Simple, New York Magazine and The Huffington Post. She founded TheLifeOptimist.com, and she sends out the popular email, “Vitamin Optimism,” offering happiness tricks to try at home. www.amyspencer.com.

Lance Stranahan. Lance is a real estate investor and commodity trader from West Palm Beach, Florida. He is also an independent filmmaker and actor. He received a bachelor’s degree in business from Palm Beach Atlantic University and is a graduate of The Palm Beach Film School. His interests include weight training, golf, holistic health, and nutrition.

JC Sullivan. JC is addicted to backpacking the world. Having been to more than 120 countries, her goal is to see them all. Not financially rich, she barters, takes odd jobs, and sells an inspirational poem or story. backpackingpoet@yahoo.com.

William Sweet. William is a retired engineer living in St. Mary's County, Maryland. He is married and has three children and three grandchildren. Sweet was employed by Johns Hopkins University's Applied Physics Laboratory for thirty-seven years. He retired in 1989. He and his wife enjoy traveling, biking, and swimming. His hobbies include radio-controlled model aircraft and photography. He coauthored a textbook on systems engineering, which is currently used in many graduate courses.
Sónia Trejo. Sónia is a certified life coach and master core energy coach. Her passion is to inspire others to achieve their greatest potential, turning their challenges into opportunities. Incorporating mind, body, and spirit, she is a fully certified Pilates instructor and certified personal trainer through the National Academy of Sports Medicine. She has also studied yoga for twenty years. She is also an active board member of the nonprofit Heartfelt Foundation, the International Coaching Federation, and the M.S. Society. Sónia resides in Pasadena, California.

Salvatore Trifilio. Sal was raised in Waldwick, New Jersey. He grew up playing baseball and football, but dropped football in high school to play baseball year-round. His dream had always been to play Major League Baseball, but that ended when he graduated high school. Sal is currently the news editor at The Fairfield Mirror, an award-winning student newspaper at Fairfield University in Connecticut. His plan is to pursue a career in sports journalism after graduation.

Steve Uible. Steve served as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Kingdom of Tonga from 1967 to 1970. He is currently a consultant to the construction and farm equipment industry, and is the owner of Time Service Consulting, LLC. www.TimeServiceConsulting.com

Norman Wain. After graduating from Brooklyn College, Norman worked at various radio shows as a DJ. He was on the air during army service in Japan for the Far East Network. He went on to be a program director, advertising account executive, and salesman in Cleveland. Years later, Wain formed a company to buy and operate radio stations, including stations in Cleveland, D.C., Raleigh, Charlotte, St. Louis, Tampa, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, and Jacksonville. He retired in 1994. He is now president of the Palm Beach Gardens concert band, where he still plays his tuba. 

Peter Wallimann. Peter graduated from ETH Zurich with a degree in chemistry. Later, he conducted research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge. He became a scientific editor in an international publishing house, and worked in the Swiss chemical industry. Apart from intellectual development, Peter has always been interested in cultural and spiritual movements. His project, termed “SENSIGNS,” is a unique fusion of art, nature, and poetry, with a focus on beauty as a universal key to higher understanding and deeper compassion. He has published numerous scientific, philosophical, and spiritual articles, and has given many lectures. He has made thousands of remarkable high-resolution photographs of insects, especially of dragon flies and butterflies. His artwork has been shown at private exhibits, published in magazines, and printed in various formats. Peter works as a writer and sound therapist in Zurich, Switzerland. He has a ten-year-old son. www.sensigns.ch 

Natalie Weinrauch. Natalie is an eighth grader at the Singapore American School. Although she is American, she was born and raised in Singapore. This experience has presented her with many opportunities, including the ability to build relationships across nationalities, become fluent in Chinese, and travel around Asia. She enjoys softball and volleyball, and participates in Model UN, but her main focus is spreading awareness of children’s shelters in Cambodia.

Monsignor Robert Weiss. Msgr. Weiss grew up in Florida. He completed his seminary studies at Saint Bernard Seminary in Rochester, New York, and was ordained in Saint Christopher Church, North Chili, New York, in 1973. Coming to the Diocese of Bridgeport in 1976, he served as parochial vicar at Saint Andrew Parish in Bridgeport, Saint Leo Parish in Stamford, and Saint Jude Parish in Monroe, before becoming Pastor of Saint Joseph Parish in Shelton in 1990. He was the spiritual director for Stamford Catholic High School (now Trinity Catholic), has been a member of the College of Consultors, and was Territorial Vicar of Vicariate V. He was appointed Pastor of Saint Rose in 1999.

Henry Wiseman. Henry Wiseman is the president of CDS Global Logistics, Inc., with over 30 years of experience in international air and ocean transportation, customs brokerage, and supply chain logistics management. Prior to joining CDS, Henry was senior vice president of FedEx Trade Networks, North America. He was responsible for sales and operations of a business unit with sales of $2.3 billion dollars and 2,300 employees. He retired from the organization in 2008. Henry graduated with a bachelor's degree in marketing from University of Baltimore.

Becky Woodbridge. Becky, founder of Becky Woodbridge & Company, is a professional speaker and executive coach. Becky trains and coaches individuals, teams, and organizations around the world to “unleash the extraordinary.” A Newfield Network graduate, Becky specializes in ontological coaching, the study of being. Becky values the importance of giving back and supports many nonprofits in her community. She currently resides in Delray Beach, Florida, with her dog, Benney. Becky is a member of the National Speakers Association, Florida Speakers Association, ASTD, and the International Coach Federation. www.beckywoodbridge.com.

Barbara Woodworth. Barbara is a freelance writer who specializes in diversity and career-related nonfiction. Her 1,500 articles appear in more than 50 international, national, regional, and local publications. Today, the Woodworths reside in Buffalo, New York, near their three children and grandchildren. Barbara believes optimism is a vital and important facet of her life. 

Rebecca Zerbo. Becca is thirteen years old and lives with her sister Hannah, her mom Laura, and her dad Chris. She has two dogs, Oreo and Mallomar. She loves to play the flute and is also learning to play the alto saxophone. She will enter the eighth grade at Eagles Landing Middle School in Boca Raton, Florida. She is enrolled in advanced classes and is a member of the National Junior Honor Society and the school symphonic band. This past year she was recognized as the Character Counts winner for her school and an honoree for the school district. Becca also graduated from the Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA) in June and won the national title for the Saunders Scholars Bright Ideas Competition, where she earned a $30,000 scholarship to R.I.T and University of Tampa. 

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