2019 WOW Conference
Danielle Niles, 34 of Haverhill, is the Meteorologist for CBS Boston’s WBZ-TV Morning and Noon News. A native of Weymouth, MA, Niles joined WBZ-TV News from New England Cable News where she spent five years as weekday morning meteorologist. Before that, Niles was a forecaster at Weather Services International in Andover, where she provided forecasts for private companies. Niles is a 2006 cum laude graduate of the University of Massachusetts/Lowell where she earned her bachelor’s degree in atmospheric science and was captain of the women’s varsity soccer team. She then went on to earn a master’s degree in meteorology at Florida State University. Danielle’s story of passion for weather brought her to the job of her dreams and the love of her life, Matt Noyes.
Renee Terry, Founder
Sweet Cheeks Bakery
Renee is a self taught cake and cookie artist who got her start working as a part time bakery clerk at a local supermarket. She used her artistic abilities to decorate pre frosted cakes while building a clientele and following. Over time, she pursued other jobs to figure out exactly where she wanted to go in life, but always came back to cake decorating. After working at a local custom cakery for over 4 years, she married and had her first child and at that point decided to quit her job and create Sweet Cheeks, a custom home cake and cookie bakery. Today, Renee creates up to 300 custom cookies a week in addition to 5 or more custom cakes, teaches cookie classes while also taking care of her 4 year old son and managing her business and social media accounts.
Michelle Cully, CEO
Xpressman Trucking & Courier
Michelle Cully founded Xpressman Trucking and Courier 25 years ago with a pager from an electronics store and pay phones along the road. She built her business and prided herself on my ability to work hard and never take “no we can’t” as an answer. As a leader in transportation and courier services, Xpressman understands that their customers are trusting Cully and her team to handle customer’s important shipments, documents and everything in between. Her tagline “the delivery is the difference”, isn’t just a phrase it is a promise to all of customers. Michelle’s story of overcoming trauma and transitioning to thriving is a powerful testament of her spirit and strength of heart … that spirit continues with her commitment to her customers.
Gabriela Taveras, 24, of Lawrence was selected as the fourth runner-up at Miss America pageant, and Miss Massachusetts 2018, at the 79th annual Miss Massachusetts Scholarship Pageant. Taveras is a 2017 graduate of Emmanuel College, where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology with a Concentration in Neuroscience. She was a member of the Dean’s List and received an Emmanuel College Dean’s Scholarship. She is currently employed as an account recruiter at Insight Global where she was named an All-Star Recruiter. An accomplished vocalist, she performed “Stand Up for Love” by Destiny’s Child at the pageant. Gabriela’s story is full of resilience — overcoming extraordinary obstacles to achieve top recognition as a Miss America runner-up, on the international stage.
Geralyn White Dreyfous
Academy Award Winning Movie Producer
Geralyn White Dreyfous has a wide, distinguished background in the arts, extensive experience in consulting in the philanthropic sector, and participates on numerous boards and initiatives. She is the Founder and Board Chair of the Utah Film Center, a non-profit that curates free screenings and outreach programs for communities. Geralyn’s executive producing and producing credits include the Academy Award winning Born Into Brothels; Emmy nominated The Day My God Died, Academy Award nominated The Square, Academy Award nominated and Peabody Award winning The Invisible War, and multiple film festivals winners such as Kick Like a Girl, In A Dream, Dhamma Brothers, Project Kashmir, Miss Representation, Connected, Sugar Babies, The Crash Reel, and Anita. Her works in production include: Wait for Me, All Eyes and Ears, In Football We Trust, and Be Natural. Geralyn was honored by the International Documentary Association with the Amicus Award in 2013 for her significant contribution to documentary filmmaking. Geralyn’s ability to share powerful life stories through filmmaking illustrates her robust storytelling and highlights her ability to take heartfelt life experiences and propel them for good, internationally.
New to this year’s program, WOW will be highlighting three local non-profits and collecting donations.
· Ruth’s House (Dresses)—With care and compassion, Ruth’s House provides clothing and employment training opportunities to individuals and families in need throughout the Greater Merrimack Valley.
· The Psychological Center (Underwear)—A nonprofit agency with a long history of serving the Greater Lawrence community with quality and compassionate services including a homeless shelter, counseling center and medication clinic.
· Stepping Stones (Diapers)— All volunteer, non-profit providing free diapers, child care items, and classes to lower income families in need in the Greater North Shore and Merrimack Valley.