WERC 2017 Awards Luncheon

WERC 2017 Awards Luncheon

** Announcing the WERC 2017 Awards Luncheon **



DateSeptember 28, 2017
TimeSocial reception & Registration 11:30 AM; Luncheon 12 Noon to 1:30 PM
Place: Yahnundasis Golf Club, 8639 Seneca Turnpike, New Hartford, NY

The luncheon is our opportunity to acknowledge and honor several outstanding women in the Mohawk Valley, and is also an important fundraiser that helps support the services we provide. The WERC Awards Luncheon offers several ways to support the economic advancement of families living right here in Oneida and Herkimer counties.  Your sponsorship, donation, or ticket purchase will fund essential career counseling, training and job readiness services enabling our participants to gain employment and become contributing members of their community.

Our Keynote Speaker:

Michelle Truett
484 Design, Inc.

Michelle is a New Jersey native, a graduate of Rochester Institute of Technology and has been running her own business for 15 years. 484 Design is a graphic design firm specializing in identity and communications design for small businesses, non-profits and social enterprises, as well as historical-based projects. 484’s design work has gained national recognition with awards through the trade publication Graphic Design USA. Her work has been published in numerous design books including the book “365 Habits of Successful Designers”. For the past two years, she has been working extensively on neighborhood branding initiatives with Cornell Rust 2 Green Utica in Bagg’s Square, Downtown Utica and the Brewery District. She presented a TEDx Utica talk in September, 2015 titled “Microbranding Utica Mile by Mile”. She just wrapped up the 10-week Levitt AMP Utica Music Series in Kopernik Park – a competitive national grant that has allowed the power of free live music to transform the Oneida Square Arts District.

Her community and business awards include: 40 Under 40 honoree, Accent on Excellence, YWCA Salute to Outstanding Women Award – Arts & Communication, Women In Business Award and she was named the Ad Person of the Year through the Mohawk Valley Advertising Club.

Michelle has also has been an instructor for the Young Entrepreneur Academy at Mohawk Valley Community College going on six years, is on a handful of boards and committees for great organizations and worthy causes and has logged lots of miles running this year in half marathons and the Peak to Brew relay race. She is a longtime mentor to a Proctor High School senior. She’s looking forward to a great winter as she snowboards with her 16 year old son, Deondre, a budding artist and well known on Instagram as @thathandstandkid.

Luminary Award:

Alicia Dicks
President & CEO, The Community Foundation of Herkimer & Oneida Counties

Alicia Dicks is president and CEO of The Community Foundation of Herkimer & Oneida Counties. Prior to joining The Foundation, she served as president of the Fort Schuyler Management Corporation, where she managed the construction, maintenance and operations of the Computer Chip Commercialization Center at SUNY Polytechnic Institute.

Alicia also spent more than a decade at National Grid in several managerial and operational positions. She was a regional executive director, managing National Grid’s business operations for the Mohawk Valley and Northern New York, and also served as a director of market strategy. She began her public policy career at the Albany Local Development Corporation and in Albany city government, facilitating urban planning, development, and construction projects as a senior economic developer.

Alicia has a master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the University at Albany and a bachelor’s degree in International Relations from SUNY Cortland. She serves on many local boards, including the “Save of the Day” Foundation, the School & Business Alliance and Mohawk Valley EDGE, and was a co-chair of the MV500 initiative.

Alicia lives in Whitesboro with her husband and two daughters.

WERCing Woman of Achievement:

 Diane Dixon
Excellus BlueCross BlueShield

Diane is employed at Excellus BlueCross BlueShield in Utica. She is a graduate of the WERC Professional Pathways program!


Our Emcee:

Mark Leuthauser
Director of Training & Programs, The Peacemaker Program

Born in Auburn, New York but raised in West Utica, Mark attended Notre Dame High School, where he served as Company Chaplain in his NJROTC unit. He also attended Mohawk Valley Community College, where he earned a degree in Human Services with a Counseling focus. He brings nearly ten years of experience working with the Oneida County Department of Social Services, and has volunteered with children in venues from Agapé House to Sunday school.

Mark has been with The Peacemaker Program since 2006, and has earned dozens of ADR-focused certifications. These include Farm Family Divorce Mediation, Parent-Teen Mediation, Civil Arbitration, Lemon Law Arbitration, Cultural Competency, Large Group Facilitation, and more. He has delivered trainings across the country, and continues to practice regularly as a mediator and arbitrator to keep his skills sharp.

In addition to being the resident facilitator, Mark also serves as The Peacemaker Program’s webmaster. He has presented a regional Landlord Training Program, and conducts programs at local schools, in addition to having provided regular programming for Donovan Junior High School and Proctor High School. He currently resides in Whitesboro with his wife, son, and daughter.

Ticket Purchase, Donation Information, Sponsorship Opportunities

If you or your company would like to support our luncheon and the services we provide to women in the Mohawk Valley, there are several options: ticket purchase, make a donation, advertise in our 2017 Awards Luncheon Program, and a variety of Sponsorship opportunities.

Tickets to the luncheon are $45 per person and can be easily purchased through our online and secure Eventbrite link, or by calling our office.

To purchase tickets online, click here ⇒ Purchase Tickets Now

To purchase tickets through our office, please call 315-793-9700

If you are unable to attend the luncheon but would like to make a donation, click here ⇒ Make a Donation to Support WERC Services

We offer a variety of affordable sponsorship levels for the 2017 WERC Awards Luncheon, for information click here ⇒ Sponsorship Opportunities

Thank You very much for your generous support, and we look forward to seeing you at the luncheon September 28!

Speaking of generous support, here is a list of our wonderful sponsors!
















ABC ChemDry
Bank of Utica
Brown and Associates CPAs, P.C. 

CBB Realty, LLC
David Eghigian, Esq.
Herkimer College

Hummel’s Office Plus
Kessler Promotions, Inc.

McQuade & Bannigan, Inc.
Nunn & McGrath Funeral Directors
Precision Unlimited Car Care
Beverly Quist

Scalzo, Zogby & Wittig, Inc.
YWCA of the Mohawk Valley