Presenter Profile: Maria Shepard-Smith

January 19, 2012 § Leave a comment

By: Heather Comstock

This is the second in a series of posts to introduce you to the audacious ladies who make the Empowerment Center work!  They go above and beyond to help clients and are determined to make a difference in women’s lives – particularly because they have had to forge their own path through a life transition. Their own experiences coupled with their training and expertise provides a positive experience for women coming through our doors.

Maria presenting at the 2011 Women's Empowerment Conference. Photo by Nancy Arseneault.

Maria Shepard-Smith is the Empowerment Center’s resident Life Coach.  Several months ago, I ran across a blog post over at the personal finance blog Get Rich Slowly where a new staff writer Tim Sullivan wrote about how everyone is always in some sort of transition.  The trick he said was to “exist with confidence in the transitions”.   To me, that sums up the process of life coaching.  Working with her clients, Maria helps sort through the information and helps her client focus on what’s important and develop a plan of action helping them to confidently approach and manage changes in their lives.

Maria has personal experience on making major life transitions.  A native of New York City, Maria was working in the banking sector but after some years, began to feel restless and unsatisfied with her job.  A job transfer to Maryland for her husband provided the opportunity to re-invent herself and try something new.  After contacting an organization which provided assistance on gauging career interest, Maria was recruited as a volunteer and was trained to facilitate general life skills training on topics such as parenting and time management.  Over time this led to a position with Howard Community College in program that was helping people to move from public assistance to work.  After meeting Lisa Dolce, the two partnered on a company to deliver workforce development training on a larger scale in the community and Maria found her calling.

In 2002, Maria shifted her focus to Life Coaching to find ways to help people (herself included) manage life changes.  Maria is a certified Now What?(TM) Facilitator and Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) Coach. Maria derives a sense of satisfaction from helping people identify their goals and helping them plan for achieving those goals.

Come meet Maria and learn more about Life Coaching at one of our Free Empowerment Circles the third Wednesday of each month or sign up for one of her workshops.  Her next session is “Getting Unstuck” on Monday, January 23rd at 6:30 p.m.  Register here   You can contact Maria via email at maria@empowerctr.org .

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