“The 1990s will bring her unparalleled opportunities: opportunities to contribute, to impact, to fulfill dreams—socially, economically, creatively, spiritually…and so we launch The Peoria Woman…”
—from the premier issue of The Peoria Woman, February 1990
Although I have been the “face” of this magazine for nearly two decades, it was a couple of men who first approved its content. To soften the perception of the magazine as a “feminist” publication, they chose an illustration of a rose vase and pearl necklace for the inaugural issue. Since then, more than 220 Peoria area women have graced our covers (see page 19 for a complete list)!
My first responsibilities were in advertising sales. I was typical of a generation of women who stayed at home with their children and later re-entered the workforce. Upon the unexpected illness and death of my first husband, who was co-founder of the company, I became a widow and single parent at age 40. With my remarriage, I understood the challenges unique to a blended family and those of helping aging parents adjust to a less mobile life. All the while, I’ve kept growing the business.
Perhaps a bit sensitive on the topic, I bristled upon hearing stereotypical assumptions made about women business owners. My first experience came shortly after my first husband’s passing. Many assumed that I would give up the business. I was given a lack-of-confidence vote and my salary was adjusted downward by our then-partners, prompting me to buy out of that agreement. I greatly appreciated the advice and counsel of many businesspeople at that time, when I was overwhelmed with decisions. But I always wanted to play by the same rules as everyone else. I chose to make financial responsibility a top priority—even when it meant sacrificing my own paycheck. More than 10 years later, this publishing company is still growing.
Some months ago, I began talking with friends and colleagues about the future direction of The Peoria Woman. While I humbly accept some praise for touching many lives through this magazine—and thank our readers for their kind words and notes of personal thanks—the resounding agreement was that the current generation of young female professionals does not have the same history or face the same challenges as my generation. This is progress.
As I contemplated the changing workplace and the focus of this company, it became clear that we could better channel our limited resources into an improved, expanded InterBusiness Issues (IBI). We are confident that you will appreciate the new look of IBI—to hit mailboxes this August. As a subscriber, you will begin receiving the new IBI at that time; if you do not want to receive it, please let us know.
Goodbyes are always bittersweet…but we look to our future journey with renewed purpose. And we think that, like the last 20 years, the next 20 will bring unparalleled opportunities: opportunities to contribute, to impact, to fulfill dreams—socially, economically, creatively, spiritually. We thank you for your support! TPW