Tammy Cieslak, a First Source Financial Service Representative, finds it tremendously rewarding to make life easier for others. While at home, she and her spouse are ardent rescuers of cats and dogs. In her professional life, she has made it her mission to make life easier for working women.
Tammy has been a financial advisor for 13 years, and has been on the board of the Women’s Employment & Resource Center (WERC) since 2013. Through that work, she has become involved in one of their biggest fundraisers: Wine for WERC, an annual wine-tasting event that raises funds for the organization’s programs.
“I was involved initially as a business banker in a previous job, because I wanted to be involved in the community,” Tammy says. “As a professional woman, I chose this group to help other women in the area.”
In addition to being a board member, Tammy actually went through their job preparedness assistance program when she was between jobs and needed to update her résumé. She has been gainfully employed with First Source ever since, so she is a living success story for the organization.
What is WERC?
WERC is a non-profit organization geared toward helping women achieve their employment goals. They offer skilled training in Microsoft products, public speaking, interviewing, helping with self-esteem and confidence, and empowering women to get into—or back into—the workforce. WERC helps women become “job-ready”. Since WERC is also partialy funded by the state, many women are eligible for free services if they meet certain guidelines. Anyone who does not qualify can still use their services on a fee basis. All of WERC’s programs are tailored to an individual’s needs; they also offer a full 4-week program that encompasses all of the skills they teach.
Wine for WERC raises funds by securing sponsorships, selling tickets, and through raffles during the event. In addition to Tammy’s participation, First Source Federal Credit Union is a White Wine Sponsor at this year’s event, and is donating a Utica Comets VIP Experience raffle prize.
“I just love participating in WERC,” Tammy adds. “I have learned lot. It’s empowering and exciting to watch our success stories. She enjoys seeing women who go through the program gain confidence, learn to do the work on their own, and become gainfully employed. “It’s so important to give back whenever and wherever I can.”
Wine for WERC 2017 will be on Thursday, March 2, 2017 from 5:30–7:30pm at Aqua Vino Restaurant, 16 Harbor Lock Road East, in Utica. The event features a wine tasting and pairing with heavy hors d’oeuvres, with wine experts on hand to discuss the pairings. The evening includes raffle prizes, and a mystery grand prize. Susan Nackley Mojave will be the event emcee. All proceeds stay in the Mohawk Valley and benefit the free programs and “WERCshops” at the Women’s Employment & Resource Center.