On September 10th, 2018 Pass the Torch for Women Foundation officially announced Deb Hallberg as the new CEO of the organization. With over 15 years of experience and a strong dedication to mentorship and the community, we could not be more excited to learn about Hallberg’s personal testimony and vision for the organization as it continues to grow and inspire other women.
1. Throughout your career, you’ve demonstrated a passion for helping women and the community. As the new CEO of Pass the Torch for Women, what does this position mean to you, and do you have any specific goals for this organization that you’d like to share?
Life is a journey and throughout the journey you hopefully are fortunate to realize what feeds your soul or fills your cup. At this stage in my life I still have some runway to do what fills my cup and that is mentoring/supporting women navigating life, career, and whatever else life has thrown in their path. As the CEO of Pass the Torch for Women I am able to pay it forward everyday by sharing my passion for mentoring with other like-minded people and introduce women and men on how to become part of a larger picture where “we envision a world where all women are equitably represented at all levels of leadership in business and government.”
2. What are some personal values of yours and how have these influenced your career?
I grew up at a time when a woman’s role was to stay home, take care of the house, do laundry, take care of the children and have a hot meal on the table every night. This was the “expected” role for many young girls, however my father did encourage me to find something so I could support myself in the event the scenario above didn’t work out. So I did. Doing so made me realize that I’m not cut out to be a stay at home wife/mom because there’s so much more out there. However, the pathway was not as friendly for women as it was for men. Experiences early in my career taught me there is much work to be done for women and we must work together in order to “pay it forward”. I have been fortunate to meet many amazing and successful people throughout my journey and continue to meet people who inspire me to do more and to focus time and energy to helping and mentoring women. I hope to make a difference for my daughters and granddaughters.
3. Do you have any advice for women that are just starting their careers?
Stand tall and be heard. Be ready to fight for what you want and learn the skills of negotiation. Life is about being willing to fight and negotiate your path. Additionally, network, network, network! You can never know too many people. Connect with your contacts on LinkedIn, update your LinkedIn profile, add events, articles, etc. This gives you more presence with your contacts. Dress for the position you want and always show up (mentally and physically). It is better to be the person that is the overdressed and not under-dressed.
4. Outside of work, what are some things that you like to do in your free time?
I look forward to spending time with my grandchildren (ages 14 (twin boys), granddaughter (12 – almost), 8 (grandson) and 9 month old granddaughter. Other things I like to do outside of work are: fishing, reading for fun, walking, paint furniture, dancing and entertaining family.