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Women turn out for health fair
Written by Greg Ruland   
Wednesday, 26 January 2011 00:00

About 100 businesswomen and their supporters turned out Jan. 18 for a health exhibit and luncheon presented by Professional Women’s Group, a new organization “committed to igniting personal and professional growth through events focused on inspiring women,” PWG chairwoman Tracy Voytek said.

Heather Yorba, third from right, chats with former colleague Beverly Newton, left, at the Professional Women’s Group health fair and networking luncheon at the Cottonwood Recreation Center on Jan. 18.The group’s fourth gathering since organizing earlier this year, the Women’s Health Fair featured a variety of health care and fitness experts, several representing alternative health care modes of treatment.

Although other women’s groups are active in the area, PWG is an alternative, more affordable association for working women who want to network and learn how to grow their businesses, Voytek said.

The health fair turned out to be the organization’s most successful offering so far, attracting more than 90 participants to Cottonwood Recreation Center on Jan. 18, according to PWG Vice Chairwoman Karen Reinhold.

“January is usually a time of year when people are making resolutions to lose weight and get healthier, so the timing is really good for something like this,” Reinhold said.

In addition to practitioners from the Verde Valley, several healers and therapists from Sedona also took part in the exhibition, she said.

Patricia Wheat, a vendor who attended to educate women about skin care, said the forum was a perfect place for women to learn how to care for themselves.

“I love the energy of this many women being in one room,” Wheat said. “Women’s health issues are different than men’s. Their bodies are different. They age differently. Their hormones are different.”

Tina Faust, who works at a local spa for women, said health fairs like those sponsored by PWG are important for women to attend.

“It’s important for women to know about the alternatives and take care of themselves,” Faust said. “They will feel more energy and feel less stress. When you feel more energy and less stress, you make better choices.”

Not everyone was interested in health products and services, however. Many were there to meet up with old friends and compare business notes. Networking, an important part of any successful business strategy, would be well under way by the time lunch started, Voytek said.

“As assistant to the city manager, it’s important for me to get a feel for what’s going on in the business community,” said Kyla Allen, assistant to the Cottonwood city manager. “I just wanted to stop by and see what the ladies are interested in promoting.”

After being in the banking and financial services industry for more than 30 years and experiencing layoffs and downsizing first hand, Voytek started a new career in the hospitality industry.

“My favorite manager and mentor was a woman who gave me a hand up, not a handout,” Voytek said. “It is my goal to pay this forward.”


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