Girl Scouts of Northern N.J. honors women for having community impact

Four New Jersey business leaders were honored by the Girl Scouts of Northern New Jersey for making a substantial impact on their communities and industries and serving as positive role models, during the organization’s recent Women of Achievement event.

Kay Fernandez of Konica Minolta, Donna Watridge of Atlantic Health, Nicole Licciardi of Mars and Erika Liles, formerly of Johnson & Johnson, were honored.

Girls Scouts of Northern New Jersey CEO Betty Garger said the recognition was more important than ever.

“Despite the challenges of 2020, our honorees have remained committed to advancing the lives of girls and women in our local community and beyond,” she said. “We could not think of four better role models in leadership for our Girl Scouts this year.”

Here’s a look at the four:

Fernandez: Serves as global DX branding & senior vice president, marketing, for Konica Minolta. She was the recipient of the Women of Achievement Award.

The Franklin Lakes resident leads the creation of innovative marketing strategies for Konica Minolta Business Solutions as a member of the executive team. She is an advocate of women in the workplace and established the Step Forward Program at Konica Minolta to inspire women in professional excellence. The program is open to all employees, specifically helping women develop leadership skills and men to understand how they can impact change. Since its inception, the company has seen a 16% increase in women executive managers and a 33% increase in women midlevel managers.

Watridge: Serves as the chief nursing officer of Hackettstown Medical Center and Newton Medical Center. She was the recipient of the Women of Achievement Award.

The Readington Township resident has been a dedicated health care provider, keeping the health and safety of her patients and community as the top priority for nearly 30 years. Watridge leads site operations, including nursing, surgical services, emergency services and patient experience, for Atlantic Health System’s Hackettstown Medical Center and Newton Medical Center, where she oversees a team of 1,786 employees.

A former Girl Scout herself, she has been a longtime supporter of advancing young girls and women and understands the importance of building girls with courage, confidence and character, especially in today’s environment.

Licciardi: Serves as chief of staff of Mars. She was the recipient of the Elinor J. Ferdon Young Woman of Promise Award.

The Roxbury resident is a user-centric digital leader with an entrepreneurial spirit who has the vision to design a more empathetic world. As the chief of staff and an integral member of the Digital Leadership Team for Mars, she is responsible for managing and overseeing special projects and initiatives related to digital exploration and acceleration. Licciardi is a true entrepreneur at heart, and her mission is to lead and accelerate purpose-driven user experiences through design and digital.

Liles: Serves as a GSNNJ volunteer and troop leader. She is recipient of the Mitzi Golbek Spirit of Girl Scouting Award.

The Cresskill resident is an entrepreneur and philanthropist. Prior to becoming an entrepreneur, Liles worked over a decade in leadership in medical device sales and marketing at Johnson & Johnson.

Liles made some of her favorite childhood memories as a Girl Scout, Brownie and Junior with her mother as a troop leader. She continues to pay it forward by recruiting and helping to train new leaders within her service unit.  Both of her troops have earned the Journey Summit Pin, the highest award that a Girl Scout can earn as a Daisy and Brownie.

If you would like to donate to the Girl Scouts of Northern New Jersey, click here.