Saks Key to the Cure

Thursday, October 16-Sunday, October 19
Tigerlily Foundation
Saks Key to the Cure
KTTC 2014 Press Release

Kick0ff Event – Wednesday, October 15, 2014, 6:30 – 9:00 p.m.
Click here to register for kick-off event tickets and to purchase sponsorships.
View pictures of the Key To The Cure Kick-off Event.

Host Committee Members

Event Chair: Maggy Francois

Karen Alston, AM & G Marketing


A leader in the marketing industry; Karen Maria Alston has proven to be one of many top innovative and visionary thinkers in the business. Karen began her career working for Fortune 100 companies such as JP Morgan Chase, MBNA America Bank (now Bank of America) and America Online. While climbing the corporate ladder, she developed her skills working alongside the best marketing executives in the  industry.

Born as a 3rd generation entrepreneur with the desire to contribute to the industry, Karen developed and launched her own boutique marketing communications firm. In 2002, Alston Marketing Group now d/b/a, AM+G Marketing Communications was established.

In 2008, Karen added to her business by acquiring Edge Advertising, Inc., of Washington, DC. Karen’s career includes leadership roles and affiliations with many prominent Organizations.  Because of her illustrious profession and business acumen, she has been featured in several publications such as the Baltimore Sun, Black Enterprise, The Washington Business Journal, Black MBA, Essence Magazine, Washington Examiner, DC Modern Luxury and the Baltimore Daily Record. She is also a sought after speaker for many marketing industry conferences on a range of topics such as digital media, traditional marketing, government marketing and her favorite topic the “burdens of the superwoman.”

Karen Maria Alston received a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Finance from Howard University and an Executive Education Certificate in Branding and Design from Harvard University.

Sarah Fraser, DC Mix 107.3, Radio Host

Michelle Gloden Schoenfeld, Renu Medspa
MZX_1510Hailing from Washington DC for the past 18 years, Michelle Schoenfeld is an active member of the community.  She is a mother of two, a local business owner, writer, coach, and has been involved in several charitable organizations at the leadership level including Knock Out Abuse Against Women, Lollys Locks, Fashion for Paws, Becky’s Fund, and most recently, The Tigerlily Foundation. Michelle was diagnosed in 2013 with Stage III breast cancer and now as a survivor knows first hand the priceless impact community support can make on a person’s life while fighting cancer.  Feeling blessed, she started the blog Bittersweet as a way to share her journey and help other people who’s lives have been effected by cancer. In an effort to give back, she found The Tigerlily Foundation and has been dedicated to supporting their life changing mission of aiding young women fighting cancer by providing the basic necessities that she was blessed to have received herself during her own battle.

Gabrielle Jordan, Jeweler, Author & Tigerlily Foundation Youth Ambassador

DAR_2181eGabrielle Jordan, started her booming jewelry business, Jewelz of Jordan, at the very young age of 9 using gemstones and freshwater pearls to create classic jewelry pieces that capture an ageless beauty and elegance. She is the youngest member of the Great Black Speakers Bureau, Stiletto Women in Business and ALIVE Magazine’s Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awardee, Tedx Youth Speaker and Tigerlily Foundation Youth Ambassador. Gabrielle has a #1 Amazon Bestselling book, The Making of a Young Entrepreneur: A Kids Guide to Developing the Mind-Set for Success.  Gabrielle received a $10,000 college scholarship as the first 2014 McDonald’s 365Black Community Choice Youth Award. Her Excellence Created through Entrepreneurship and Leadership (ExCEL) Youth Mentoring Institute offers leadership principles, motivation for young people, business advice for budding young entrepreneurs, and interviews with other successful young entrepreneurs.  Gabrielle has been featured on NPR, NBC, Fox News and ABC’s Good Morning Washington.

Wendy Pittman, Allergan

Maurisa Potts, Spotted MP

Maurisa founded Spotted MP in 2008, after a long successful path in corporate America.  Clients of her boutique firm realize the success of personalized service that only comes from partnership with a dedicated, caring professional.  Spotted MP’s practice focuses on small-business and non-profits in the areas of charity, retail/destinations, arts, and culture.  Experience in sectors as diverse as fashion, non-profit, retail, accounting, legal, and economic development/tourism, ensures your business will benefit.

Follow the media pulse in Washington and you can’t miss Maurisa’s strategically placed client mentions.  Expertly cultivated relationships with major media outlets have generated compelling stories for Washington Business Journal, The Washington Post, CNN, MSNBC, People Magazine, The Washington Times, NBC 4, ABC 7, WUSA 9, FOX 5, WTOP News, Northern Virginia Magazine, DC Modern Luxury, and Capitol File.  Since her firm’s inception four years ago, she has successful secured over 1,500 media mentions total for her various clients. Learn more about Spotted MP at As a recognized community leader, in addition to her client work, Maurisa lends her expertise and enthusiasm serving with various organizations. Learn more about Spotted MP at

Violetta Markelou, Photographer/Artist

ym vm editAward winning photographer Violetta Markelou Is fascinated by the art of transformationAs not only a photographer, but as a stylist, producer and artistic director –Violetta creates one of a kind visual experiences for brands and editorial as well as individual and corporate clients.

“I love to create beauty and and I live to capture it”, says Violetta about her approach to her work. Violetta is a new kind of photographer unbound by traditional perameters – a visual artist serving to curate an entire story through a lens as creative director at VM Photography & Makeup LLC . The shoots she produces are shot with a strong conceptual fashion emphasis and a willingness to explore in order to bring images to life.

Bonnie McDaniel, Media Personality & Magazine Publisher

Bonnie McDaniel Bio for 2014 SeptemberBonnie McDaniel is a woman of many talents, but with a central focus – changing the world, one woman, one family, one community at a time.  She is the Chief Creative Officer of McDaniel and Company, a boutique consulting agency, providing consulting services, concept market development, branding and promotions for an array of different industries including film and television, hospitality, non-profit organizations and personal brands.

She is the founder of the Women Are Talking© Initiative, an interactive virtual space connecting women globally to share knowledge, experiences, and resources in order to increase the influence and footprint of women world-wide.

Bonnie is a television talk-show host – Metro Magazine with Bonnie McDaniel which airs on the ION Network, a television segment contributor, currently serving as a segment contributor for CNN,  ABC’s WJLA Let’s Talk Live and Fox Channel 5 Morning News.  She is also a dynamic speaker and prolific workshop facilitator, focusing on issues surrounding women & girls and family & lifestyle.

Bonnie is a national mentor for Levoleague and Running Start’s Star Fellows program.  She is currently the consultant for One World Syria, an upcoming art exhibition on the National Mall in Washington DC and a celebrity fund-raising concert produced by  Beats, Rhyme & Relief Global Concert.  This relief  effort is to support children of the Syrian Zaatari Refugee Camp.

She is a freelance writer for Harris Publications, the publisher of 9 print lifestyle magazines and the author of In the Eye of the Storm:  A Celebration of Family and The Real Purpose of Home.   Bonnie’s latest  book , Queen Bee: 7 Reasons Why Women Are Not Empowered and What You Can Do Now to Change This Phenomenon, focuses on women’s empowerment.

Stara Pezeshkian, Stara Glam

Tara Papanicolas, Cancer Survivor & Advocate

Tara_FCBorn and raised in Chevy Chase Maryland, Tara Papanicolas realized her passion for all things fashionable from a young age. She began styling her school friends and putting together her mother’s wardrobe as a teenager. Naturally she wanted to pursue her love of fashion and styling further through a formal education. Tara attended the Fashion Institute of Technology and Marymount University where she studied photographic styling, merchandising and buying. Following graduation, Tara worked with a high-end boutique in Washington DC as a visual merchandiser and buyer. At that time she realized she wanted to pursue a career as an independent wardrobe stylist. She currently resides in Washington DC crafting unique wardrobe selections for her clients, local fashion photographers, magazines and runway events in DC. Tara’s work has been featured with Washington Life Magazine, Capitol File Magazine and Fox 5 News.
Tara embodies freedom of expression through fashion everyday. She believes that whoever you feel like being day to day can be expressed through an eclectic wardrobe. From the bohemian goddess, to a sexy gothic style queen, everyday the options are limitless.
A recent Cancer survivor, Tara hasn’t let Cancer take over her life. Instead she has been busy building a vintage empire with her partner starting with nomad yard collectiv, located in the union market district.

Allison Priebe BrooksQueen Bee Designs

tigerAllison Priebe Brooks of Queen Bee Designs is one of the nation’s premiere jewelry designers.  Allison is a life-long Washingtonian and has been heralded by The Washingtonian Magazine as one of DC’s Style-Makers.  She completed her studies at the prestigious Smithsonian studio arts program in jewelry design after leaving her job in the United States Senate.  Her designs are worn by First Ladies, Senators, Congresswomen with a long list of fans including Laura Bush, Hillary Clinton, Michelle Obama, Barbara Bush, Nancy Pelosi, and dozens of members of the Senate and House.  Lynne Cheney even hosted a jewelry trunk show for Queen Bee Designs at the home of the Vice President at Number One Observatory Circle.

The world of high fashion has also taken notice of Queen Bee Designs with fans like Vogue Magazine’s Andre Leon Talley and fashion expert Tim Gunn. Celebrities like Sofía Vergara, Barbara Walters, Parker Posey, Dolly Parton and Marcia Cross all own pieces from Queen Bee Designs.

Allison’s big bold designs are a favorite in our nation’s capital and each necklace bears the signature bumble bee – a lady always creates a buzz when wearing a piece of jewelry from Queen Bee Designs.

Tashia Senn, Designer

TashiaSmIn October 2009, Tashia Senn, native of Washington, DC launched TASHIA SENN COLLECTION, which represents a collection of high-end women’s evening wear and separates. The line was debuted less than six months after graduating from New York’s prestigious Fashion institute of Technology. Tashia’s looks have been described as “timeless pieces, containing a lot of look-at-me details-draping, exaggerated collars, feathered, and beaded embellishments.” The collection exudes romance, elegance and femininity. “My design philosophy is to make perfectly timeless collections that make women look and feel beautiful and ageless, by creating soft feminine elegant pieces with precise attention to intricate detail, and using the most exquisite fabrics.” Tashia’s most poignant inspiration comes from her world travels, the influence of natural elements, and the diversity of cultures and customs that are expressed in her collections. Since the premiere of Tashia Senn Collection, it has attracted the attention of fashion industry advocates, magazines, bloggers, retailers, and celebrities. Celebrities that have worn Tashia Senn Collection include Grammy nominated Ledisi and Deborah Cox, and a host of political dignitaries and socialites. Tashia Senn Collection has been featured in several local, national, and international publications.

Tashia Senn Designer Image1In March 2014, recognize from her fashion peers, as Fashion Group International of Greater Washington, DC, Rising Star Award recipient for Womenswear.

In addition to managing Tashia Senn Collection, Tashia’s passion for design is reflected in the non-profit organization, SAVVY GIRL that she established in 2004. The mission of SAVVY GIRL is to reach, assist, and mentor young women in an effort to transform their lives with personal and professional mentorships through the industry she loves most- “fashion”.

“My goal is to create designs that capture the romance of life and place women at the center of attention. I thread every piece with the spirit of Paris, London, New York and DC, creating an inspired line that is elegant and unforgettable.”

Bershan ShawOprah Winfrey Network, “Love in the City” cast & SurvivorBershansm

Bershan Shaw, Author, Warrior Life coach, Motivational Speaker, Multifaceted entrepreneur and two time Breast Cancer Survivor, Bershan has dedicated her life to helping others embrace their inner warrior during life’s most difficult journeys. Bershan’s warrior odyssey began when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2007. “I AM NOT ONLY SURVIVING……I AM THRIVING!!!!”

To protect herself from infertility, she opted for radiation treatment instead of chemotherapy. For a brief time, all seemed well. But two years later after her initial diagnosis, Bershan’s cancer returned. Two weeks before her wedding, her doctors gave the bleak diagnosis; stage four breast cancer with three to six months to live.

During chemotherapy, Bershan was overcome with gratitude for the love and support she received from her friends and family during her illness. Determined to be a blessing to others, she started a unique social network support site,, designed to inspire others during the most difficult times in their lives. Bershan is seven years cancer free.

She has also created a line of jewelry, which can be worn as a reminder of hope and the miraculous healing power of our inner Warriors. “I AM HERE TO SHOW YOU HOW YOU CAN LEARN TO THRIVE AS WELL!” Bershan is currently on the cast of a reality docuseries “Love in the City” focused on the lives of four professional, attractive, educated, intelligent and stylish women navigating their lives and friendship in New York City. The show “Love in the city” airs every Saturday at 10:00 PM EST on the OWN Network.

Angelica Huesca Talan, Clarendon Moms

Angelica TalanAngelica Talan is a wife , the mother of two and the founder and publisher of, one of the most popular Northern Virginia/Washington DC area lifestyle blogs.  Prior to becoming a blogger, Angelica was a familiar face on television, in print ads and on the big screen.

She has recently been featured on numerous media outlets including: The Washington Post, Let’s Talk Live/WJLA/DC-ABC, The Food Network, NBC 4 WashingtonW*USA9 NewsFashion Washington Magazine, Washington Post Express, Washington Life MagazineK Street MagazineGuest of a GuestThe Scene Bisnow, The Georgetown Daily, DC Modern Luxury Magazine,  In The Capital, Glitterazzi, DC Life Magazine, The Hill, Alexandria Stylebook, Washington Family Magazine, All You Magazine, Daily Café, SnobSwapRevamp! and The Wild Kat Show on Satellite Radio.

Her latest endeavor is to use her voice to help raise awareness for cancer research and to support The Tigerlily Foundation’s mission to aid women fighting cancer. She invites you to join her on this very important crusade.

Telesa, ViaKimpton Hotels

Shawn Yancy, Fox 5 News

image1Award winning News Anchor, Shawn Yancy co-anchors the weekday 6, 10 and 11pm newscasts. Shawn joined the FOX 5 News team in September of 2001. Her second day on the job became her first big story in Washington: TheSeptember 11th terrorist attacks.

Shawn has earned a number of prestigious journalism awards including the Edward R. Murrow Award for an investigative series at N.I.H. and Emmy award for outstanding news anchor.

Over the years, Shawn has worked with various organizations that benefit women and children including: Best Friends and Dress For Success DC. She hosts her own annual event benefiting local organizations that help women in the Washington, DC community.

In her spare time, Shawn enjoys traveling, painting, interior decorating and spending time with her family. She also loves eating jelly belly sours, sushi, and really spicy food (but not necessarily in that order). Shawn and her husband have 3-sons.

Event Supporters

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K Street Magazine


October 15, 2014
Tigerlily Foundation Beneficiary of Saks Key to the Cure