Do you identify as a Secretariat or a Seabiscuit?

“With the Kentucky Derby upon us, I’m inspired by Seabiscuit, the champion racehorse who became a symbol of  ‘hopes and dreams’ by overcoming obstacles….My secret passion was interior design, so at age 30, I left my booming (marketing) career behind me, moved to a different continent, went back to school and launched Olga Adler Interiors. Every day, my goal is to help my clients create home designs that reflect their own innermost hopes and dreams.”

– Olga Adler

President, Olga Adler Interiors, Ridgefield resident

Photo by Tanzie Johnson

“When it comes to PR work for clients, I identify with both horses. Sometimes I’m a Secretariat, developing and launching new programs that succeed from the start. But I’m also a Seabiscuit, taking on difficult assignments requiring me to work my way through challenge after challenge until victory is ours.”

– Jeff Bogart

Principal, Bogart Communications, Hastings-on-Hudson resident

“Definitely a (Secretariat). Having been in the insurance industry when woman were scant, I had to make my own way through lots of obstacles.  Competing with the old boys’ club was really the big challenge. Having a wonderful family and other women business owners rooting for me helped keep me on track….Fifteen years into my career, I  partnered with a wonderful woman, Candace Cohen, and formed MCM Agency Inc. She challenged me to learn about medical malpractice insurance. Our newest addition is…insurance counseling for seniors….You have to be able to turn in all directions if you want to maintain your place in the forefront.”

– Maxine Casalbore, LUTCF

Maxx Agency in Carmel, Carmel resident

“Definitely a Secretariat. I see myself as part of a whole through my association. We are always sought after for the latest trends in hair and beauty by students and the beauty professional.”

– Jason De La Torre

Events director for the New York Hair & Beauty Association based in Westchester, Scarsdale resident

“Ours is a family business and I’ve been in commercial real estate all my life. When your father makes you lunch growing up and takes the first bite out of your sandwich, he calls it ‘commission.’ So this makes me into a Seabiscuit, always trying to get my whole sandwich back.”

– Kristin T. Geenty SIOR

President, The Geenty Group, Branford, Hamden resident

“As the proud owner of a rescued Thoroughbred mare who has given birth to two Secretariat grandsons, I would have to say Secretariat, who along with Man o’ War had the longest stride of any horse at 26 feet. A long stride is the result of good conformation and good mechanics, and the result is more efficient and effective movement for staying ahead. This is what I strive for – to stay one furlong in front of the news, what’s new in social media, and what’s ahead in each client’s industry so that I can maximize (his or her) marketing efforts.”

– Risa Hoag

GMG Public Relations Inc., Nanuet resident

“I have Seabiscuit written all over me. Whether we are talking business, athletics, bodybuilding or academics, I have never been the individual who was the most talented or smartest, nor was I blessed with superior genetics.  In every area that I’ve excelled, it has been through sheer determination, a willingness to outwork those around me and learning to be resourceful.  Today, I own a personal training studio, preside over a personal certification company, am a fitness author, a professional natural bodybuilder, and I just recently co-founded a natural bodybuilding organization.  These achievements have not come easy but that only makes the victories that much sweeter.”

– Michael Lipowski

President, I.A.R.T./PURE PHYSIQUE in Yorktown, Yorktown resident

“I guess I have always seen myself as an underdog like Seabiscuit. I enjoy being told that I could not achieve something and proving people wrong.  It’s a satisfying feeling in my line of work when we can accomplish something for a client that seemed near impossible.”

– Nick Magliato

Senior catering manager, DoubleTree by Hilton Tarrytown, Croton-on-Hudson resident

“I identify myself with Seabiscuit. With a lot of hard work, determination and a dream to succeed, I can win any race.”

– Renata Moraes

Westchester beauty blogger, Simply Flawless Beauty, White Plains resident

“The pace and complexity of business, society, markets and relationships can make many of us feel like a (Seabiscuit). Vision, passion and tenacity are traits that help me to front-run in my business life.  But it is the feeling of being an underdog that drives me to continually grow, personally and professionally. Staying ahead of the curve is a daunting but exciting journey.”

Brian Panessa

Owner, Hilltop Farms, Croton-on-Hudson resident

“I’m much more like Secretariat. Twelve years ago, I took a chance opening one of the first yoga studios in Westchester.  I wanted to educate and inspire our community to take a positive step toward being proactive with physical and emotional health.  I brought in celebrity teachers and tapped into community events to bring yoga awareness to all people of all ages.  I’m proud to say that we are still running ahead of the pack with an unbelievable staff of talented instructors who always offer their time and hearts to help others.”

– Susan Rubin

Director, Sage Yoga at The GYM, Armonk, Bedford resident

“I identify more with Seabiscuit. The advantage of owning your own business is that you can respond quickly to changing conditions and move ahead of the competition when they might not expect it. I see openings, prepare appropriately and make my move.”

– Melissa M. Thornton

CEO, Limousine Service of Westchester L.L.C. in White Plains, Greenburgh resident

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