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Meet Marguerite Ferrell - BHDC’s next Woman of the Week, March 2021

In honor of the women who are driving change, blazing trails and nurturing society, the Berkeley Heights Diversity Council is excited to celebrate Women’s HerStory Month by bringing back our inspiring “Woman of the Week (WOW)” series this March.

The BHDC is celebrating women in the Berkeley Heights community who are often unsung yet are inspiring, motivating and hard-working. WOW will honor the women right here in Berkeley Heights who are impacting the world in their own way.

We are excited to feature Marguerite Ferrell as our next WOW.

Marguerite Ferrell has devoted her career to the education of others. Marguerite is a current adjunct professor of Coaching Leadership at FDU in their Master’s in Sports Administration degree and also the Talent Management Specialist at JAG-ONE Physical Therapy with over a decade of work with the New York Red Bulls and US Soccer Federation where she provided education workshops and employee training and development of coach, player, student, and/or employee learning curriculums. Marguerite delivers leadership training to inspire greatness in individuals and teams.

Marguerite inspires us with her abundant enthusiasm, passion and ability to help others become their best selves, and inspire others. She’s a working mom who understands the value of creating, and then leaning on, a support network to help be her and others become their best selves yet still create the balance we all crave. We know you will enjoy Marguerite’s HerStory as much as we did, and bet that once you read this, like us, you will want to have a coffee with Marguerite, or work with her professionally where she clearly shines.

How long have you lived or worked in Berkeley Heights?

I have lived in Berkeley Heights for four years. My husband and I moved in, got a dog, and had our daughter here. Our neighbors were immediately welcoming, supportive, and caring. I was born and raised in Union County and it is exciting to know I will be raising my family here.

What inspires you?

Helping others succeed.

If you were to describe yourself in one word, what would it be and why did you choose this word?

I had to ask my husband and my best friend. They both said caring and thoughtful.

So, I guess, I’d say caring. I would not be able to do what I do if I did not care about people.

We can't imagine you have too much down-time, but if you do, what are you binge-watching these days?

Daniel Tiger. We have a two-year-old who likes to stay up late. We do not watch much tv these days and mornings are filled with, “It’s Daniel Tiger’s neighborhood.”

What do you do for a living? Why did you go into your profession?

In October, I took a position with JAG ONE Physical Therapy as their Talent Management Specialist. It feels like everything I’ve done has led me here because I like to be an influencer and am excited to have the opportunity to assist in the development of people and organizations.

I have always been an educator. I am a teacher, manager, leader, and coach with 15+ years’ experience overseeing large groups. I have spent over a decade in sports management and education and recently transitioned over to the healthcare industry.

I am devoted to leading people by training or developing learning plans for groups or individuals to succeed in where they want to go. I help people and organizations on their work and life journey and conduct leadership and management workshops.

I want people to succeed around me and my profession has allowed me to do that.

What are key skills that you need to do what you do?

Number one is to lead myself. You are not able to lead others without being the example first. I feel I am organized and a good communicator because teams cannot function without clear expectations and understanding of everyone’s role and responsibility. As an educator, you must listen, observe, and assess. You can then create personalized plans for people, organizations, or groups to help them get where they want to go, what they need, and how they are going to get there.

Who is one woman everyone should know about? What do you want them to know?

My Grandmother Kehoe (1923-2019). We are going through a pandemic. My Grandmother experienced the great depression, WWII, Korean, Vietnam wars with a military husband and raised three children. She worked hard throughout her life and raised a family. She read the newspaper, watched the news, and listened to the radio every day. She knew what was going on in the world, she knew who she wanted to vote for, and she donated to all different types of organizations including St. Jude’s Hospital, World Wildlife Fund, Auxiliary Women, and local VFW’s. My grandmother was independent, a learner, witty, and giving. In her late 90s she drove herself from Clark to Berkeley Heights to surprise us and see our house and her great grand-daughter!

I want everyone to know that we can get through this Pandemic, history shows us that. I want everyone to know we all need our independence; it makes us who we are. Independence fosters self-reliance and can increase your self-value and self-esteem. I have learned both these things from my grandmother and mother and hope to pass this on to my daughter.

If you could go back to your high-school or college-age self, what’s one piece of advice you’d give?

Do not underestimate yourself… courage and hope can take on a life of its own. Be confident in who you are even if you are uncomfortable in the moment.

Who is your female role model & why?

Wow, there are so many. Right now, the woman who resonates most with me is Michelle Obama. Michelle Obama recently did an interview with Ali Krieger and Ashlyn Harris, who are new moms. Michelle discussed balancing a career and having a family. Michelle Obama said, “I recently read a study that shows like one of the challenges that families are facing is that the extended family notion has kind of fallen apart, because people are moving, because of jobs, careers, people are more transient, and we’re like the first generation where people are somehow expected to sustain a family just with the nuclear family and that’s never been the case throughout history, you know through the history of humanity people have raised children in community, in villages, right?...being okay with making choices that sustain that village for yourself, and that may mean moving or having people move with you….having nannies or babysitters…who become a part of that extended family and not feeling that somehow you’re cheating, you know. I mean that’s the pressure that parents feel.”

As a relatively new mom, I need current working mom role models. We do put pressure on ourselves to be the best at work and the best at home. It is exhausting and not sustainable. Instead, we need to trust our community, our day care centers, spouses, schools, our family, neighbors, friends, and our network to help us. We need to ask for help when needed. We need to be reminded there are no perfect parents, but we can create perfect moments together with our network as support.

How can you set an example for young women?

I (we) can’t stop…. setting a good example for young women.

Lead myself. Love myself, my body, my experiences, understand and communicate my emotions, and do something that makes me proud. Show this to my daughter and show this to young women. Raise my daughter to speak up and use her voice and emotional intelligence to thrive and be the next generation of a role model.

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