20 Women to Watch Nominees 2017 Feed

Melissa Riba, GreenRope


Melissa Riba, Director of Education at GreenRope was nominated by Lars Helgeson

Melissa has taken the reins of developing an end-to-end certification and training program for CRM and marketing automation. Using GreenRope's built-in learning management system (LMS), she has written a complete curriculum that educates and trains people in how to employ Complete CRM in their business or NPO. Her training plans include multimedia explanation, testing, and validation and focus on building lasting, measured relationships with a company's leads and clients. Using novel techniques to explain complex ideas, Melissa has pioneered effective integrated educational methods that will change the way CRM and marketing automation users and designers work.

Connect with Melissa:

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Debbie Qaqish, The Pedowitz Group



Debbie Qaqish, Chief Strategy Officer & Partner, The Pedowitz Group is nominated by Elizabeth Fairleigh.

Why Debbie Qaqish is a Standout Woman to Watch in Sales Lead Management

Debbie Qaqish first bought marketing automation in 2004 as VP of Marketing for an Atlanta-based software company. She understood then that marketing automation would change sales and marketing roles, forever. In 2004 she became an owner and partner at The Pedowitz Group and is a visionary, pioneer and thought leader in the field of B2B modern marketing. She coined the term “Revenue Marketer™” in 2011 to describe the new role of marketing, created the Revenue Marketing Journey™ in 2011, launched WRMR Power Talk Radio for Revenue Marketing Leaders in 2009 and published the award winning book “Rise of The Revenue Marketer” in 2013. This Queen of Revenue Marketing is working on her PhD and writing her dissertation on B2B CMO accountability in a digital world. She also teaches an MBA program on Revenue Markerting at the College of William and Mary.

Her Approach to Marketing

As a sales leader veteran, Debbie understands what it takes to create sales and marketing synergy – a critical ingredient to Revenue Marketing and sales lead management success Her approach to marketing is full throttle, no-holds barred as she recognizes the strategic advantage a firm can gain as a result of transforming marketing from the pens and mugs department to the line of business responsible for repeatable, predictable, and sustainable revenue growth.

Leadership Qualities

Debbie is a transformational leader. As a visionary change agent, her greatest skillset is helping organizations assess the need for change, create a vision for change, inspire others to believe in the change and execute the change. This leadership style has helped The Pedowitz Group become a widely recognized and regarded marketing agency. The Revenue Marketing Journey and the principles for Revenue Marketing became tools of change evangelized. Companies like Schwab, Cisco and Microsoft have fully embraced and leveraged these key elements of change.


Debbie has worked with hundreds of organizations to help them transform from cost centers to revenue centers, demonstrate credible return on marketing investment (ROMI) and contribution to pipeline and closed deals. In the last year, key clients included Microsoft, Schwab and MedAssets. At Microsoft, she was the executive coach to the leader of global marketing transformation and recorded an inspirational Revenue Marketing video watched by thousands of global Microsoft marketers through their Modern Marketing University. She worked with corporate and field marketing leaders to help transform marketing at Microsoft and worked with the global marketing operations team to better envision and communicate their martech stack (over 50 different technologies).

Debbie is laser-beam focused on identifying the key ingredients for building a successful Revenue Marketing Center of Excellence. Through research and reporting, she has been prolific in the area of Marketing Operations, authoring a white paper series (http://bit.ly/2eWqF0I) - Debbie has bylined numerous articles on the rise of this critical functional area (http://bit.ly/2eoSpr4) and is frequently quoted in CMO.com, Chief Marketer and other notable industry publications. A strong industry voice, Debbie is a regular columnist for Strictly Marketing Magazine, B2B Marketing Magazine and AMA’s B2B Marketing newsletter.

Honors / Awards

Top 40 Most Inspiring Women in Marketing - Kapost
Top 40 Most Inspiring/Most Influential in Sales Lead Management - Sales Lead Management Association (SLMA) – 4 consecutive years
Top 20 Women to Watch distinction – SLMA
Top 10 Woman CMO to Watch – FierceCMO
Gold Medal for Best Book – Tops Sales World

Connect with Debbie:

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Susan Meell - MMS Education


Susan Meell, CEO MMS Education is nominated by Matthew Cohen

Susan Meell is an extraordinary leader who works tirelessly---personally and professionally---to improve the lives of others.  While it may sound trite, she truly leads by example and works daily to empower others---at all levels---with whom she interacts.

Perhaps most impressive, Susan seamlessly integrates the needs of corporate clients alongside their strongly held desire to improve the lives of children thereby creating winning programs for over hundreds of thousands of children each year with the goal of educating, inspiring, entertaining and enriching communities.  By adhering to this "double bottom line," Susan ensures her corporate endeavors and successes have an outsize societal benefit.

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Stefanie Nastou, OpenText



Stefanie Nastou,VP of Global Demand Generation is nominated by Ericka McCoy

Stefanie Nastou is an inspiring leader that has lead our team on a digital transformation journey. She has been a fierce advocate of providing the right digital marketing training to ensure a data driven marketing team that is positioned to always think digital first. Anyone who speaks to Stefanie can see how passionate she is about Martech and the critical role technology plays in a marketers ultimate success. Stefanie has driven marketing innovation through a number of different initiatives, our most successful one being the digital guerrilla marketing innovation award, which outlines specific quarterly challenges for the entire team and encourages marketing innovation and experimentation of new methods and platforms. As a marketing leader, she ensures we are in lock step with sales management by managing a strong account development team that is directly partnered with sales and field marketing.

Stefanie has been instrumental in creating an agile and innovative demand generation culture at OpenText, delivering better and more qualified pipeline performance while utilizing the same amount of resources and reducing program costs. Year over year she continues to inspire her team and raise the bar when it comes to marketing innovation and results.


Connect with Stefanie:

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Debra da Costa, Direct Marketing Partners


Debra da Costa, President Direct Marketing Partners is nominated by Jacquelyn Herzig

Debra da Costa has been leading her company, Direct Marketing Partners, since 1991, passionately believing in the goal of creating an effective marketing company truly responsive to the individual needs of clients. To this end, she structured DMP so that the company would be large enough to have the depth of expertise required by corporations with worldwide interests, but of a size that would permit close project participation by all the firm's senior staff, as well as flexibility, scalability and customization in a somewhat rigid contact center world.  

Debra is all about creating pipeline growth and stability for clients by offering mid-funnel solutions.

For more than two decades, Debra has helped shift the lead generation model from quantity to quality and market-ready to sales-ready. She has done this by leading a team that stays ahead of the technology curve, combining the human touch within the multi-touch process, including various emarketing and social marketing endeavors. Early on, Debra developed nurturing campaigns and continues to tailor them to the ever increasing output from marketing automation. She has also guided her company and the industry by evolving database marketing to metrics-based marketing and is considered a pioneer in this metrics-based approach to demand generation.  Most recently, she has expanded operations globally through trusted strategic relationships.

For the past several years, Debra was named one of the “50 Most Influential People in Sales Lead Management,” by the Sales Lead Management Association (SLMA). In 2011, she was one of SLMA’s “20 Women to Watch” winners.

Tracie Orisko - Managed Sales Pros


Tracie Orisko, President, Managed Sales Pros -is nominated by Carrie Simpson

Tracie added 1MM to the Managed Sales Pros top line in 2016.  She is responsible for growing Managed Sales Pros over 600% in three years.  Starting as an appointment setter with the company when MSPros was established, she quickly became a SME and team lead, and was promoted to President in 2014.  As President of a young, self funded startup, Tracie is often required to do a lot with very little, and is not above dialing the phone for clients when necessary.  She can turn a new team member into a successful appointment scheduler in under 7 days. Her team has grown from 4 to over 40, and her successful clients include "unicorn" backup company Datto and established technology companies like Cisco.  She also finds time to sit on her community Habitat for Humanity board, raise two children, and run half-marathons.

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Lydia Sugarman, Venntive



Lydia Sugarman CEO, Venntive is nominated by Lisa Padilla

Lydia Sugarman has led her own company and been a mentor for women CEO's for more than two decades. Her expert knowledge and experience in marketing and sales are unmatched. She can teach to a room or one on one and add massive value to the marketing that you already have in place. Her ideas are groundbreaking and simply work as business strategies to help generate leads and increase sales. Recently, she connected me to some amazing women in her network that have opened a door for growing my membership. I value her as an expert in her field and I treasure her heart for giving. I highly recommend as a Woman Leader in Business.

Connect with Lydia:

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Erika Goldwater - CIPP/US


Erika Goldwater is nominated by Carlos Hidalgo

Erika Goldwater was most recently the Vice President of Marketing for ANNUITAS, one of the leading demand generation and change management agencies. In her role, Goldwater led all aspects of marketing, demand generation and public relations for the firm. Under her leadership Goldwater developed the approach and strategy for an ongoing demand generation program.

During her tenure and as a result of her marketing, ANNUITAS acquired 12 new logos which were sourced directly from marketing and accounted for more than 50% of the firms revenue through 2014-2016. Erika is a frequent writer on the topic of lead management, demand generation and content marketing and continues to exhibit her skills as she consults with B2B marketing organizations.

Connect with Erika Goldwater:

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Ruth Stevens - eMarketing Strategy


Ruth Stevens is nominated by Cyndi Greenglass

Ruth Stevens is the President of eMarketing Strategy, a B2B consultancy in New York City, where she consults on customer acquisition and retention for both consumer and business-to-business clients. Ruth is truly a leading-thinker in the field of lead generation, demand generation and B2B marketing. She is currently Professor of Marketing at NYU Stern and Hong Kong UST, a guest blogger at Biznology, HBR.org, and Target Marketing Magazine, and a well-known author of B2B Data-Driven Marketing, Maximizing Lead Generation, The Complete Guide for B2B Marketers,and Trade Show and Event Marketing. Ruth also co-authors a white paper series, “B-to-B Database Marketing.” which lifts the curtain and provides valuable insights into the complexities of data sources.

Ruth is a sought-after speaker and trainer who has presented to audiences and business schools in Asia, Australia, and Latin America. In fact, she just returned from teaching at the University of Hong Kong. She has held senior marketing positions at Time Warner, Ziff-Davis, and IBM.

Ruth serves on the boards of directors of Edmund Optics, Inc., the HIMMS Media Group, and the Business Information Industry Association. She is a trustee of Princeton-In-Asia, past chair of the Business-to-Business Council of the DMA, and past president of the Direct Marketing Club of New York. Ruth was named one of the 100 Most Influential People in Business Marketing by Crain’s BtoB magazine, and has been recognized once before as one of 20 Women to Watch by the Sales Lead Management Association. She serves as a mentor to fledgling companies at the ERA business accelerator in New York City.

Ruth studied marketing management at Harvard Business School, and holds an MBA from Columbia University.

Connect with Ruth Stevens:

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Jenny Robertson, ANNUITAS


Jenny Roberston is nominated by Jason Stewart

Jenny took over as the lead for the marketing technology practice for ANNUITAS in 2016. Her depth of knowledge in marketing automation is astounding, and she has been recognized as a "Marketo Champion" an incredible six times, is a Marketo Certified Expert AND a Certified SFDC Administrator, and she has lead the Atlanta Marketo User Group for the past three years. Her work in following best practices in lead management and applying them to Enterprise-level B2B demand generation programs is second to none.

Connect with Jenny:

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Jennifer Harmel - ANNUITAS


Jennifer Harmel is nominated by Jason Stewart

Jennifer leads the demand generation strategy practice for ANNUITAS, and in that capacity helps our clients to to shift their demand generation approach from a historic reliance on one-touch, transactional marketing tactics to a multi-touch, multi-channel, ‘perpetual,’ integrated, buyer-centric, content and dialogue-driven Perpetual Demand Generation Program model. Her leadership is helping not only to improve performance at key clients like Freeman, Halyard Health, UL, SecureWorks and Earthlink but also in fostering the growth and experience of a team that relies on her. 

Connect with Jennifer:

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Ali Hall - AgentCubed


Ali Hall was nominated by Jeff Morgan

Ali Hall serves as the Vice President of Sales for AgentCubed and comes with 10 years of experience in the healthcare industry.  She began her career with a consulting firm focusing on business process improvement, then the sales AVP of program management for a Fortune 500 health plan, and in 2014 moved into a fast growing, lead management software company within the insurance industry.  Initially responsible for client relations in 2014 and 2015, Ali now leads the national sales and marketing strategy and has quickly become a recognizable face at industry events.  Ali’s desire to genuinely help a client identify the lead management solution that will provide a positive return on their investment is one of the many traits that makes her successful and is an important contributor to our almost 100% client retention rate.  She builds a genuine trust with people, asks the right questions and doesn’t spare any details when demonstrating how our lead management solution will improve their processes.

Ali travels majority of the year and does so with a smile on her face and a deep drive for success for herself and AgentCubed.  She’s a regular speaker on lead management, CRM and distribution topics at the Medicare conferences and has built a trusted network through her approachability and professionalism.  AgentCubed experienced an increase in new business growth of 57% in 2016 and is on target this year to bring in even more. We have no doubt Ali will continue to be a force in the insurance lead management space for years to come and believe she is certainly a Woman Leader to Watch in 2017.

Connect with Ali:

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Traci Whetzel - Concept Services


Traci Whetzel is nominated by Trevor Calderon

Throughout her 14 year tenure with Concept Services, Traci has held numerous roles and assisted in laying the foundation upon which her successors have continued to build.

Her broad industry knowledge, ability to develop meaningful customer relationships, and adaptability to the many tasks at hand continue to make her successful in her role.

Traci is a strategic and process driven manager with a passion for sales process design, results, CRM and all things technical. She is versatile across a variety of business settings, from high level strategy sessions to low-key networking events. She is a strong communicator and can build great relationships with all those she works alongside.

Connect with Traci:

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Lauren Zak - Concept Services


Lauren Zak is nominated by Trevor Calderon

Lauren Zak, Business Unit Director, joined Concept Services as a Business Development Manager in 2014. In the short span of about 3 years she has had an incredible impact on her peers, clients, and the Concept Services organization as a whole.

Her ability to identify pain points, coupled with the execution of appropriate and timely business solutions, has been pivotal to the success she has experienced. She excels at not only developing new sales relationships, but maintaining and growing existing relationships by continuing to deliver upon the KPI's and expectations set before her.

Lauren maintains an open door policy and approachable demeanor while managing a campus of 60 plus employees. Her dedication to her role and fearlessness to take on the next challenge are two reasons why Lauren finds herself nominated for the SLMA "20 Women Leaders to Watch in Business in 2017".

Connect with Lauren:

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Elle Woulfe - LookBookHQ



Elle Woulfe is nominated by Bonnie Crater

Elle is an extremely talented marketing leader who who inspires not only her team at LookbookHQ but also colleagues on the best marketing practices.  She is extremely smart on how to apply marketing metrics to improve overall performance of marketing departments and is a leader in this area.

Connect with Elle:

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