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The Co-Co and Cocktails and Conversation: Redefining the 9-5, a Panel Discussion Moderated by Erin Halper of The Upside

The Co-Co Cocktails and Conversation: Join us as The Co-Co gathers thought leaders and experts from across fields in a forum to exchange ideas, spark dialogue, and learn from one another.  

Get inspired and learn how our panelists have reinvented their careers to create a path of flexibility, purpose and, most importantly, their ideal work/life balance.

Today more than ever, there are many options for finding better work/life balance if you know where to look and are equipped with the right information and tools. Whether returning to work after taking significant time off, starting a small business, reinventing a career or launching a consulting practice, these panelists prove that it’s never too late to improve your career flexibility in order to live a more fulfilled (and less stressed) life.

Background on our Panel:

Erin Halper - Moderator
Erin Halper is the founder and CEO of The Upside and a leader in the Future of Work revolution. The Upside supports the success of independent consultants and connects them with companies seeking best-in-class, flexible, scalable talent. Prior to launching The Upside, Erin built a 7-year independent consulting career providing marketing expertise to her alternative investment clients, collectively resulting in more than $3 billion in outside funding and deal sourcing. After acknowledging a gap in the market between professionals seeking more balance in their careers and businesses needing new ways to acquire top-level talent, Erin combined her instinctual matchmaking skills and consulting expertise to help other executives gain better work/life balance, while also helping businesses acquire top talent that can flex and scale with their changing needs. The result is The Upside, a new kind of platform that aims to change the way working works in America. Erin earned a BBA in Marketing from The George Washington University and studied design marketing at Parsons School of Design in Paris, France. Erin is an advisor to companies looking to maximize flexible talent and a mentor at Columbia University's Almaworks startup accelerator. She has been featured in Heymama, Forbes, Thrive Global and CIO, and is a frequent speaker on panels, workshops and podcasts including Harvard University's International Women in Business Conference, Brown University's Women's Entrepreneurship Conference, Mind of a Mentor Podcast and Medium Well.

Mindy Huber - the flexible consultant

Founder & Consultant, MGH Communications Consulting

Mindy is a health communications strategist who helps corporations, foundations and nonprofits communicate high-stakes information and improve lives through impactful storytelling. She built her career managing strategy and programming at the award-winning agencies, Porter Novelli, w2o and EVOKE KYNE. Mindy earned a bachelor of science in public relations at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and a business concentration in entrepreneurship and emerging enterprises at the Whitman School of Management, both at Syracuse University. She has a Master of Public Health (MPH) from the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy in NYC. 

Shonté Parrish - the small business innovator 

Founder of Le Dotted Line 

Shonté Parrish is the founder of Washington, DC-based Le Dotted Line, a contract consultant agency whose goal is to educate, assist, and propel small businesses to achieve a greater level of success by diving into the “big business” of government contracting. To date, Shonté has guided over 100 small businesses to obtain prime and subcontract awards from $20,000 to $10 million through her course “15 Steps to Award” and retainer clients. Shonté graduated from Howard University and earned a Masters from the University of Baltimore.

Kristy Maslin - the post-kids reinventor 

Co-founder of kk creative

Kristy Maslin is a co-owner and web designer at kk creative, a boutique design firm that makes building an innovative website a possibility for any small business. Kristy spent the majority of her career in New York City as an editor for TV commercials, documentaries and feature films such as Kissing Jessica Stein. As her family grew, Kristy freelanced for Sesame Street and ran her own video production business before finally teaching herself website development and launching kk creative. She has volunteered in her community, and is a board trustee of the Reitman Foundation. Kristy earned a BA from Skidmore College.

Rachel Manne- the part-time lawyer

Nukk-Freeman & Cerra
Rachel Manne is an employment attorney advising businesses on myriad of workplace issues and a leader in Nukk-Freeman & Cerra’s employment law training practice, providing training to supervisors, Human Resources professionals, and employees at large and mid-sized companies as well as small businesses on a variety of topics, including: preventing harassment and discrimination, FMLA, ADA, respect in the workplace, emotional intelligence, unconscious bias, upstander conduct, and effective performance management. When not practicing law, enjoys traveling and spending time with her family and can be found pitching for her Millburn Recreation Women’s Softball team or serving on her synagogue’s Hebrew School Board where she assists with policy and decision-making.