Volunteering + Nonprofits


Celebrating women entrepreneurs and their successes.

Photos by Becca Sabot
Keynote speaker Thia Breen, Estée Lauder executive


Outstanding Women Business Leaders

The annual WomenVenture conference provides an ideal opportunity to celebrate Twin Cities’ women leaders who make their mark in their own fields, mentor other women to achieve success, support their families and contribute in the community through civic leadership and volunteerism. The Outstanding Women Business Leaders featured here are representative of this esteemed group of women who continue to inspire through their successes.

Janel-Photo-rE.jpgJanel Goff

The Goff Investment Group,
4999 France Ave S, Ste. 210, Edina

Enjoy Life To The Fullest - Sound, capable, reasoned advice, rooted in decades of professional experience. Led by Janel Goff, a 20-year financial services industry professional, each of the members of The Goff Investment Group has extensive experience working in an atmosphere of trust, integrity, and mutual respect to deliver a personalized plan that will help you meet your long-term goals and objectives.”

norlingE.jpgDr. Nancy Norling

Dr. Nancy Norling, DDS,
1660 S Hwy. 100, Ste. 122, Mpls.,

Dr. Norling started her professional life as a dental hygienist and followed her passion when she returned to get her dental degree from the University of Minnesota.
Dr. Norling’s commitment to excellence is reflected in her pursuit of advanced education. In 2004 she earned her accreditation in the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry and in 2010 was awarded Fellowship in the AACD which has been “the biggest accomplishment in [her] professional career.” She is currently serving as president of the Minnesota Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry.
Giving back is important to Dr. Norling. She is involved with the GIVE BACK A SMILE program, a program that helps restore smiles of domestic abuse survivors and travels to the villages in Guatemala each October providing dentistry to the families living there.
“I feel very blessed to have talents to share. I am able to restore teeth, restore smiles and often change lives.”
—Dr. Nancy Norling, DDS, FAACD

Trudy2E.jpgTrudy Rautio

701 Carlson Parkway, Minnetonka,

Trudy Rautio is Carlson’s president and chief executive officer. She is the company’s fifth CEO and only the second woman to have held the position. During her fifteen years at Carlson, she has held various senior leadership roles including eight years as executive vice president and chief financial and administrative officer.
In recognition of her outstanding leadership, Ms. Rautio has been recognized by both her peers and industry experts. In 2009, she was honored by the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal as “Chief Financial Officer of the Year” for large, private companies. That same year, she was recognized with an inaugural “Women of Distinction” award from the Girl Scouts of Minnesota and Wisconsin River Valleys. She has also received the “Carlson Fellows” award, the highest career achievement honor—given only to those employees who best exemplify the qualities of leadership, creativity, and dedication—and who are considered to be true builders of the company.
Carlson is a global, family-owned hospitality and travel company with a strong portfolio of leading brands, including Radisson, Country Inns & Suites By Carlson, Park Inn by Radisson and Park Plaza; T.G.I. Friday’s restaurants; and a majority stake in Carlson Wagonlit Travel, the global leader in business travel management. Carlson operates in 164 countries and employs about 170,000 people.
“I am captivated by the heart of Carlson; its people, its ambitious growth plans, and its service culture.”
—Trudy Rautio, CEO
IMG_0022pE.jpgHelain Pesis

Continental Diamond,
1600 Utica Ave. S. Ste 130, St. Louis Park,

Continental Diamond is a locally owned, family business that cares about their many customers. They offer very competitive prices and the best selection of diamonds, jewelry, gems and timepieces in the Twin Cities. The jewelry and diamonds are hand chosen for quality, value and uniqueness.
This full-service jewelry store includes the on-site expertise of two GIA Graduate Gemologists, seven GIA Diamond graduates, three goldsmiths, a watch specialist, a custom designer, and a career sales team. The staff is not paid on commission and offers helpful advice.
Continental Diamond has earned many accolades and awards including “Best Jeweler” 2010, 2011 and 2012!
“We appreciate the support and loyalty of our many customers. We will always provide great value and a convenient and fun shopping experience.”
—Helain Pesis

IMG_3688p1E.jpgDr. Melissa Zettler

Cherrywood Dental,
14127 Vernon Ave. S., Savage,

Dr. Zettler founded Cherrywood Dental in 1997 with no patients and one staff member. Her first patients were the construction workers who built her first office. Since then, Dr. Zettler has grown Cherrywood Dental to become a vibrant and highly successful dental practice. Dr. Zettler attributes this success to her commitment to serve her patients, and to building a team of coworkers who share this commitment. From the moment a patient contacts Cherrywood Dental, everyone strives to exceed the patient’s expectations in every way. Cherrywood Dental’s success demonstrates that Dr. Zettler’s commitment is not just good dentistry, but good business too.
“We genuinely care about our patients, and this influences all of our decisions – from deciding what equipment to purchase to selecting advanced continuing education.”
—Dr. Melissa Zettler, DDS

IMG_9374pE.jpgLila Tully

Rubble Tile,
7003 W. Lake Street, Ste. 150, St. Louis Park,

Given her fashion merchandising background, Lila Tully is known to her clients as “Styla.” After an early career teaching fashion design and working as a Target fashion merchandiser, Lila moved to the tile world, bringing along her fashion-forward sensibility. Her company, Rubble Tile, is devoted to the marriage of fashion and tile. The company’s new showroom at 7003 West Lake Street in St. Louis Park features the most extensive and fashionable assortment of tile anywhere in the metro. From handmade tile by local artists to fashion-forward porcelain from major manufacturers, Rubble has the right tile for you, showcased in a warm and inviting space lovingly attended by Lila and her team of tile experts.
“Tile is art, it’s fashion and it’s about personal style. That’s why at Rubble we like to say, Your Style, Our Tile.
—Lila Tully, President and CEO

IMG_3763pE-(1).jpgDr. Gesica Horn

Serene Oaks Dental,
400 Village Center Dr., Ste. 100, North Oaks,

Dr. Gesica Horn has always felt that people deserve to have a healthy and attractive smile and that it can be achieved in an environment that promotes comfort, relationships and trust. She has built this business around that core philosophy and it’s reflected in the office space, team and care given. Her patients become more like friends and family allowing them to feel like they’ve “come home.” The advances in technology and investment in advanced training also allows her dental team to deliver a level of care that their patients have come to expect. As the owner of Serene Oaks Dental, Dr. Horn feels it is very important to understand her patients and create a team and culture that allows them to do just that.
“We believe everyone wants to look better, be healthy and live a better life. We’re committed to helping you achieve what you’re looking for!”
—Dr. Gesica Horn, DDS