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Mother's Day Tribute

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Moms are important. They shape our idea of what a woman is and how she acts. For many of us, our moms are a glimpse of what incredible people we can become if we try. They are our first role models, sounding boards and shoulders to cry on. Moms support us and cheer for our growth. They kiss our boo-boos and teach us how to bounce back from disappointment. In honor of Mother’s Day, we asked each of our team members to send us a picture and a blurb about their mom.


Here’s what they had to say:

Cindy, Rebecca Teaff’s Mother

Simply put, my mom is amazing – I hit the parent jackpot.

My mom raised me to love others, dream big and to believe that I could change the world. She is a retired school teacher and instilled in me the value of education and continual learning.

Even with a large and rowdy family of six, we still volunteered as a family, and she encouraged my brothers and me to give back in service at a young age. I get my love of people and talking from her. She has been a tireless ally throughout my professional career – supporting me during the challenges and celebrating my successes!


Doreen, Erin Black’s Mother

Mother of four and grandmother of five, my mom has never missed a beat. She has been there every step of the way and attended every dance recital, soccer game or important moment in my life. She has always pushed me to do what I love and taught me to never give up if things don’t go my way. I’m lucky I have her as my mom and my daughters are lucky to have her as their Nana.


Beth, Elisa Watson’s Mother

My mom is smart, strong, and loving. Her hard work and dedication to her job as a mom and as a teacher always inspire me. She taught me about the kind of person, professional, and mother I wanted to be when I grew up … and that growing some duck feathers along the way would be an added benefit. She always taught me that I could be anything I wanted to be, but that doing so would take hard work. When I got to college, she said something that still sticks with me, “work hard, then have fun.” I did, and did well because of it. I’m still learning from her.

As I’ve grown, while she is still my mom first, she is also my friend. She knows my secrets, shares in my joys, and even gossips with me on the phone (just about daily). I’m so lucky to have such a close relationship with her and love her so very much. I wouldn’t be half the person I am today if it weren’t for her. Thanks Mom!!


Sandy, Gretchen Laufer’s Mother

My mom is one of the strongest women I know. As a single mom, she worked hard to make sure my brother and I never went without anything and she in turn taught me to work hard at everything I do.

She guided me to participate in community events, church groups and sports, and she taught me to always be kind and think about the feelings of others. She always supported my decisions, even if she didn’t agree with them, and she continues to be a support system today with an ear to listen or a shoulder to cry on if needed. I would not be the person I am today without her love and support.


Antoinette – Christine Sykes’s Mother

My mom is my backbone. She’s my rock, my safe space, and my biggest cheerleader. She showed me daily how working hard and operating in one’s gifts can make room for you to thrive. She’s supported me and allowed me to make my own mistakes while still being in the wings to help me pick up the pieces. I can’t remember a big moment in my life when she wasn’t there, cheering me on.

She stressed the importance of education and service. She encouraged me to volunteer with our church and local nonprofits in order to teach me about the importance of charity and giving back. She encouraged me to travel and see the world so that I could experience cultures outside of my own.

Through these experiences, She gave me room to grow and become the woman I am today.



Barbara, Bridget Parlato’s Mom

Mother’s Day has a hole in it now. My mom died a year and a half ago. She suffered from clinical depression most of my life. I knew I would feel relieved when the Beast Depression was gone and I am, but I can’t tell you how often I am seized by fits of grief and tears since she left.

She was an incredibly creative woman. She was resourceful, curious, loved a gathering and was game for “a little taste” of whatever I brought home in a bottle. She appreciated and taught me about the natural world around me, planting the seeds of my environmentalism. She asked people questions about themselves and was genuinely interested in their answers.

Maybe one of the most important things I learned from her, sans words, was the importance of touching and being touched. While many don’t believe we’re wired for it, we are. Thanks Mom. I miss you.


Bernie , Dominc Vecchiollo’s Mother

My mom has a big heart and feels everything deeply, which has taught me to care for people and help where I can. When I was in grade school, she and her friends started a thrift store in the small town where we lived and they used the proceeds to help families in need.

She was brought up during World War II and in the shadow of The Great Depression, which means that she can work wonders with a budget and somehow always manages to have a feast on the table.

Thinking of her love and thoughtfulness makes me strive to be a better person every day and that’s a gift that can’t be beat.


Cheryl, Carrie Flora’s Mother

This is a picture of my mom and my daughter Beatrice; the two most important ladies in my life. It is fitting that I am not in the photo because these two have had a bond since day one. Beatrice loves her Grammy and of course Grammy loves her “Bebe.” My kids can do no wrong with Grammy!

My mom is caring, helpful, funny and always around to help my husband and me when we need it. She takes care of us when we need it, always thinks of us and the kids and would do anything for us! I couldn’t be a good mom without my mom.


Betsy, Henry Mortimer’s Mother

My mother is an artist. For as long as I can remember, she’s been teaching me everything I needed to know about anything that has to do with the side of the brain an artist uses. Including an inability to remember which side of the brain an artist uses. Important stuff, like how to make an entrance — I was a breech birth, arriving 5 days before Christmas. Or how to cook a meal using multiple recipes at the same time, and never to make the same meal twice. Or why it’s crucial to create your own color purple using crayons, and to stop for 5 minutes and stare at the sunset or a rainbow or a drooping dahlia. That you should choose a book because of the illustrations on the cover, and that laughter should always follow tears. And, most of all, love is the key ingredient in anything you make.


Ruth, Maggie Mills’ Ma

Born in Virginia, in 1924, my mother Ruth, spent the first few years of her life in an orphanage. This experience shaped her lifelong independence and self-reliance.

At 19 years old, Ruth boarded a train to Baltimore, determined to get a job at Glenn L. Martin. Unlike other women during World War II, she was not content to work as a riveter or in the secretarial pool; she lobbied for a job as a photographer (the only woman in the department), where she was tasked with documenting production of the B-26 bomber.

Our house was an avalanche of books. Ruth possessed the most brilliant and curious mind I have ever encountered. It was she, and not the public school system, who educated me. History, writing, grammar, painting, photography, sewing, and how to drive. Every bit of it was Ruth.

Ruth cut her hair short and wore pants when most mothers were still in cotton house dresses. She drove fast cars, smoked unfiltered Pall Malls, and drank PBR. Thank you for not being like any other mom. If you weren’t you, I wouldn’t be me.

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