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For generations women were not considered to give senior leadership to the family enterprise.  That trend is changing—sometimes by design and sometimes it’s an unexpected boomerang phenomenon.  Join the conversation as we hear the journey of 3 women leaders and their very different paths into their current roles of leading the family business.  Hear how they overcome obstacles, biases, and chart their own course.

Sally Derstine, Managing Partner of DVFBC, and Angela Nadeau, President of CompuData and member of Awesome Women Entrepreneurs (AWE), will facilitate conversations with these three women successors:

  • Heather Chandler, President of Sealstrip Corporation, Gilbertsville, PA
    • Heather succeeded her mother as President.
    • Sealstrip Corporation, is a manufacturer of easy-open and reclosable features- specifically tapes and machinery. Sealstrip counts the largest brands on the globe as customers, including General Mills, Kellogg’s, Nestle, ConAgra, Mission, and Hershey.
    • Heather has been with Sealstrip for 29 years, in the roles of Sales, Sales Manager, General Manager, EVP, and for the last 13 years, President.
    • In addition to an undergraduate degree in Education and MBA from Penn State, Heather holds a law degree from Temple University.
    • Heather serves on the board of TeamPA Foundation, and the advisory council of Ben Franklin Technology Partners. She is an Emeritus board member of the TriCountry Area Chamber of Commerce.
  • Beth Hahn, President, Berkshire Systems Group, Inc., Reading, PA
    •  Beth is 2nd generation succeeding her father as President/CEO of Berkshire Systems Group, Inc. in 2016 and founder/President of SAH, Inc in 1988.
    • Berkshire Systems provides fire alarm, security, video, communications, sprinkler, and suppression systems to the commercial, educational and industrial markets. SAH, Inc. services the Residential and small Commercial market of the same systems.
    • Beth holds a BSBA in Marketing from Shippensburg University and 33+ years of experience in the alarm industry.
    •  Beth is VP on the board of Mary’s Shelter, a non-profit supporting the needs of young, pregnant women and homeless teens by providing services, programs, and shelter.
  • Karla Trotman, CEO and Owner of Electro Soft, Montgomeryville, PA
    • Karla is 2nd generation, succeeding her father in leadership and ownership.
    • Electro Soft is an American company that creates custom electronics manufacturing solutions for clients in aviation, rail, transit, OEM, and defense.
    • Karla has a background in e-commerce, online marketing, purchasing, global scheduling and supply chain logistics.
    • Karla holds an MBA from Drexel University and a bachelor’s degree in business logistics from Penn State University, where she graduated with a minor in the legal environment of business and earned a Purchasing Management Certificate.
    • Karla is a member of several boards and organizations, including the Museum of the American Revolution, Drexel University Board of Governors, Southeastern Pennsylvania Manufacturing Alliance, Montgomery Child Advocacy Project, Carson Valley Children’s Aid, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, and the Free Library Foundation of Philadelphia.




October 21
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
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