Quoted on USAtoday.com, NBCNews.com, AOL.com, CNN.com, fastcompany.com, and HGTV's frontdoor.com
It was a job at the age of eighteen for NC Governor Jim Hunt’s Press Staff that landed Mary on the path to leadership and provided the foundation for a lifetime of business networking.
From gubernatorial campaigns and working with Capitol Press Corps media to working for global non profits, Mary honed her people-connecting skills.
She spent two years at the Research Triangle International Visitors Council introducing visiting foreign dignitaries through the US Information Agency to counterpart professionals in political, technical, business, medical, and academic fields.
Later, Mary would utilize her contacts at the Council to introduce young leaders to a Nobel prize-winning scientist, a US Ambassador, EUE/Screen Gems Studios President, Frank Capra, Jr., the first lady of NC, a member of foreign royalty, and, college basketball’s “winningest” coach, Dean Smith.
Mary spent eight years as Executive Director for the Chamber of Commerce next to the world’s largest Marine Corps Air Station, using her networking skills to generate fundraising and lobbying campaigns to successfully keep the base (and thousands of jobs) off of federal closure lists...
Upon her departure from the Chamber, Major General Karamarkovich, Commanding General of Marine Corps Air Station, Cherry Point, presented a letter of commendation for her efforts as liaison between the military and off-base business communities.
In 2007, Mary authored a business networking book, entitled Who’s Hiding in Your Address Book, endorsed by the national CEO of the American Business Women’s Association. Hitting the speaking circuit broadened her abilities to reach and teach masses of professionals how to network for business goals. A few short years later, Mary was introduced to the games industry by a software executive. It was in games where she began building working partnerships and solidified her unique position as the go-to networker.
Now, more than ten years into making business introductions and building a large and diverse network encompassing film, music, games, speaking, education, social enterprise, and luxury Mary has started making waves for serial entrepreneurs whose interests go beyond the dollar. A believer in the concept of creating greater good through business, Mary uses the diversity of talent built into her network to "match make" business with charity opportunities. She helps luxury services connect with marketing/sponsorship vehicles or partnerships that make sense for the bigger picture. Her clients and network spans the globe.
Read some client stories below:
CEO for a software firm needed channel partners fast. Mary started a Twitter account and within one month, Mary attracted just over 300 perfect followers and started relationships on the client’s behalf leading to 15 introductions to the client. One of those prospects connected the client to four more leads.
Culinary Games Designer took off from Sydney, Australia for a 5-month multi-country research excursion to plan the launch of his new business. He needed to network with festival planners, culinary professionals, and wilderness experts. Mary provided these contacts throughout the excursion, guided him through the business plan and drafted his initial marketing pieces. She also introduced him to contacts, like a former White House chef in the US and the most popular food blogger in Sweden, who not only agreed to serve on his advisory team but hosted him for a visit, as well.
Hollywood composer launches Kickstarter (crowd-funding) campaign to pay for the orchestration of her second artist’s album. She needed to reconnect with her massive network in as personal a way as possible to share career updates and ask for support. Acting on the client’s behalf as business developer, Mary took over her list and conducted an e-mail campaign that helped her reach her Kickstarter goal a week before deadline and ultimately exceed the goal by more than 10k.
CEO for a popular licensed game with a huge female audience wanted contact with the foundation arm for a major brand for potential collaboration. Within 24 hours, Mary found the international ambassador for the foundation on Twitter – talked with her personally the next day, and introduced her to the client the following day.
Interviewing Frank Capra, Jr., Former President, EUE/Screen Gems Studios, NC
Speaking engagement, RTP, NC
*The Woman Astronaut (2015) (2nd Album by Penka Kouneva) (Professional Networking for Successful Kickstarter and Release)
*Video Games Live, Raleigh/Durham Performance (2014) (Marketing Assistance + Prof. Networking)
*CTA Digital, E3 2010 and CES 2012 (PR & Media Assistance + Prof. Networking)
*Infinite Warrior, Empty Flask Games (Prof. Networking)
*Nancy Drew Games, Her Interactive (Marketing Assistance)
*Splinters of Ares, Agile Media Project, Bulltiger Productions (Prof. Networking for Film-in progress)
*Mocha7 PR/Marketing Firm - Relationship Mgt. Consultant - Video Games
*Worth Working Global Summit (Speaker Panel 2015)
*3 yrs Columnist, IGDA
*1 yr, Contributor, Casual Connect Magazine
*3 yrs, Producer/Host, Local Television Talk Show for Business Startups and Talent
*4 yrs, Private Talent Coach (Actors, Former Pro Athletes, Broadcasters)
*Author, Nationally Endorsed Business Networking Book and Business Speaker
*Awarded NC's Long Leaf Pine Award -Outstanding Service to the State by NC’s Governor
*Commendation from 2-Star Marine Corps General (Business/Community Liaison)
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