Meet the expert contributors

On Wednesday, January 24th, executive assistants, expert instructors and educators, and EA contributors will gather Downtown Chicago for the Executive Leadership Support Forum, a two-day business education course for executive assistants, to share best practices for leadership development and project management.

Meet the expert contributors:

Delphine Risto

Executive Assistant to CEO, CFO & EVP of Capital Markets


Independently, what have you done to work towards professional development in the past?

“I’m a member of REACH, the Regional Executive Assistant Cocktail Hour. It’s a group that meets monthly and is a great resource for EAs to bounce ideas off each other and share contacts throughout the city in all types of industries.”

Al-Husein Madhany

Senior Coach & Consultant


What is one thing you are looking forward to sharing at ELS?

“This is a profession that is not going away. There will always be a need for executive business partners and life managers.”

Carrie Taylor

Administrative Operations Manager & Executive Assistant to Global Retirement Solutions Leader


In your mind, what is one tool you can’t live without or find especially helpful in your position?

“If I had to pick only one feature on my cell phone— our travel agency has an app that allows me to access my entire account. It sends me notifications, anything I would want to know when my executives are on the road!”

Jo Welter

Corporate Executive Assistant to SVP & President Global Businesses


Why is the Executive Leadership Support Forum important for executive assistants?

“We take care of everyone else first, but it’s so important to ‘feed’ ourselves, to continuously learn, to network, to understand best practices in our field.”

Carol Synal

Executive Assistant to Chairman & CEO


Name one thing you hope to learn or discuss with your peers at the ELS Forum.

“Tips and tricks for supporting a new manager as well as ways to continue to grow and not stay ‘comfortable’”

Melissa Esquibel

MCT, MOS Master President


Looking back, what advice would you give yourself when you were first starting your career?

“Try new things. Be willing to look foolish doing them if it turns out that way.”

Beverly Fields

Associate Director, Integrated Operations Network


Are there any blogs, books, articles or online forums you recommend reading?

“I am a big fan of Franklin Covey’s Leadership at the Speed of Trust for its ability to transform an organization in positive ways.”

Judy Twist

Administrative Operations Director


Tell us about a career accomplishment of which you’re particularly proud.

“I saw the need for my current role: someone to lead the admin team who understood and lived the admin life; someone whose sole function was to keep an eye on professional development and utilization and to ensure there were standards across the firm. It took many years and conversations, but I was finally able to create that path, not only for myself but for those who will come after me.”

Enid Martinez-Gonzalez

Executive Assistant to President & COO of Commercial Insurance


How do you define success within your role as an executive assistant?

“I define success by the trust my manager and team put in me. I measure success by feeling satisfied in my role, recognizing that I add value to my organization, and seeing my level of responsibility increase over time.”

James Sobczak

Executive Assistant to Dean of Clinical Affairs & VP, Marketing & Communications


In your mind, what is one tool you can’t live without or find especially helpful in your position?

“My voice, both spoken and writing, is the most powerful tool I have to bring to my profession every day.”

Looking forward to the Chicago Downtown Forum this week! If the dates didn’t work for you, you’re in luck. Chicago Northshore is taking place on February 28-March 1. Don’t miss this opportunity to network and learn with your peers.  For more information on how the Executive Leadership Support Forums can provide you the professional development to succeed within your career, visit: