Southern California Chapter Secretary and Program Chair Stefany Goldman doesn’t hide her enthusiasm when she talks about how she became involved in the chapter.
“It was a work assignment that turned into a whole adventure,” she says excitedly.
In 2012, the company she worked for at the time, SGS Life Science Services, sent her to the 2012 PDA Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Ariz. as an exhibitor. This was Goldman’s first involvement with PDA. While at her booth, Southern California Chapter Board member John Holmgren stopped by, accompanied by a former coworker of hers. After an introduction, she and Holmgren began talking and she learned about the chapter’s upcoming vendor night aboard a cruise ship. Seizing the opportunity for a “captive audience,” she made plans to exhibit as a vendor. While attending the vendor night, Goldman learned of a job opening, and thus, found a new job through her new connections at the chapter.
“After that I kept in contact with John,” She says. “I really wanted to give back. It was such a great experience for me. I figured this was such a great networking
opportunity—I even found a new job out of it—how can I give back?”
Goldman began attending chapter meetings regularly.
“First, I was just volunteering as a member, and then as I heard people needed help with certain initiatives—especially the program committee—I thought to myself, ‘I can help with that,’” she says, adding,
“Through my new job, I had access to a lot of different subject matter experts in the industry and it felt like I could bring some good speakers to the table. So I strted becoming involved with the program committee.”
Her initial involvement with the program committee expanded over time, and in 2013, she was elected Program Chair in addition to Chapter Secretary.
In fact, Goldman advises members who want to get involved with their chapters to attend a couple of meetings to gauge the needs of the chapter. She also recommends talking directly with chapter leaders.
|Joining and volunteering for PDA has expanded Stefany Goldman’s career opportunities |
“For me, it was talking to John directly, saying ‘how can I become more involved,’” she expresses, “So, it was just sitting in meetings and hearing how they needed help.”
Her chapter also works on initiatives throughout the year, offering more opportunities for involvement. In addition, “we’ve actually had members suggest initiatives during the meeting and then the board will vote on it.”
Goldman continues to leverage her volunteer work to advance in her career. While the position she found through the vendor night in 2012 was more of a lateral move, she has “climbed the ladder” even further.
“The experience as a board member and as a chapter officer helped me find an even better position and fit for me, working as Strategic Account Director for BusinessOne Technologies, a pharma/healthcare data technology company, which combines project management, sales, and client relationship management all into one, something I had been working toward for several years,” she exclaims.
Looking ahead, Goldman hopes to move into a Director of Account Management or Director of Project Management position. She has also become involved in a lot of quality-focused discussions within her company, utilizing knowledge she has gained through courses offered by her chapter. No matter which direction her career goes, Goldman has no plans to quit her chapter involvement any time soon and encourages members to look to their local chapters to gain knowledge, explore volunteer opportunities and network with leaders in the industry.