Table Talk

A luncheon featuring distinguished women of note.

Table Talk features a woman of note at each table whose career, life experiences, and expertise make her someone with whom you would love to share lunch and conversation while raising valuable funds for a great cause.


Presented by:

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Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Registration: 11:00
Silent Auction: 11:00 - Noon
Conversations over lunch: Noon - 1:30


*NEW - Mendakota Country Club

 2075 Mendakota Drive
Mendota Heights, Minnesota 55120

View the 2017 Table Talk Sponsors

Click here if you are interested in purchasing an individual ticket or to learn more about sponsoring a table at 2017 Table Talk.

2017 Conversationalists



Lori Barghini – Talk Show Host - myTalk 107.1 - Lori is one half of the “Lori and Julia Show” as a radio host on myTalk 107.1.  In her free time, she enjoys traveling, reading, ironing and watching bad television.  She is the world’s oldest teenager who likes to call her mom and dad, attend concerts and clubs and go shopping.




Sharon Sayles Belton - VP Government Affairs and Community Relations - Thomson Reuters – Sharon is the vice president of Government Affairs and Community Relations for Thomson Reuters, Legal. Prior to joining Thomson Reuters, Sayles Belton served as mayor of Minneapolis, Minn., from 1994 to 2001. She was the first woman and first African American to be elect mayor. During her time in office, she achieved national recognition as an expert on public/private partnerships in public safety, neighborhood revitalization and economic development. She also served on the Minneapolis City Council for 10 years (1984-1994) and was council president from 1990-1994.      


Echo Bodine - Psychic, Healer, Teacher and Author - Echo has been the director of The Center for Spiritual Development since 2003. She teaches classes including living by intuition, ghost busting, psychic development and laying on hands healing. She has appeared on national TV shows including Sally Jesse Raphael, Sightings, Unexplained Mysteries and the Today Show. She has written several books and has produced meditation CDs and DVDs.


Kevyn Burger - Broadcaster – Kevyn continues her work as storyteller. She currently is a free lance writer; you can read her stuff in the Star Tribune’s Variety section and in Minnesota Business magazine. Previously, Kevyn was on the air in Minnesota for more than 25 years, working in both radio and television as an award winning news reporter, investigative journalist and talk show host. Kevyn is the proud mother of three and a breast cancer survivor.



Dr. Gigi ChawlaChief of General Pediatrics - Children’s Minnesota - Gigi is the Chief of General Pediatrics  for the Primary Care Division at Children’s Minnesota. Dr. Chawla is a regular contributor to Minnesota Parent’s column and WCCO’s segment “Ask the Pediatrician.” Her clinical areas of interest are the care of special needs patients, premature infants, ventilator dependent children, and health care of hospitalized patients.


Julia Cobbs - Talk Show Host - myTalk 107.1 - Julia is the second half of the “Lori & Julia Show” on myTalk 107.1.  She has been a pop culture gal for several years and is curious about many things, so she is in the perfect job. She is a mother of two teenagers who are funny and know EVERYTHING and a sweet Labrador named Katie.

Collin.gifLiz Collin – News Anchor - WCCO - Liz was bitten by the broadcasting bug early on while growing up in Worthington, MN and covered a tornado touchdown at the radio station where she worked through high school.  She worked different anchoring and reporting jobs across the country before coming home to the station she grew up watching, WCCO-TV. 


Ali Jarvis – Founder - Sidewalk Dog Media – Ali is Founder and CEO of The Sidewalk Dog Team. Inspired by her Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Luc, in 2008 Ali created a go-to online information hub about local dog-friendly life. As a result of following her heart’s passion, Ali was awarded the NAWBO-MN’s Innovation in Services Businesses Owner of the Year Award in 2013. Sadly, Luc passed away in 2010, but Ali and her rescue dog, Maggie Moo, can often be seen walking to local cafes highlighting both an outdoor patio and a water dish for pups.

Jimenez.gifAbby Jimenez – Founder & Owner - Nadia Cakes – As a self-taught baker and the Founder of Nadia Cakes, Abby’s philosophy of “following her own taste bud compass” and an eye for cake design earned her the “Best Cakes in LA” award.  She has also won the Food Network’s Cupcake Wars and has had rave reviews for her cheesecake cupcake.

Katie K9.gif

Katie K9 – Katie’s K9 Obedience School  Katie K9 has been the person dog owners and industry professionals have turned to in times of need.  She is dedicated to educating the everyday family and their dog through obedience classes, private lessons and a weekly call in radio show.  She is known for her time honored training methods, K9” logic and kind hearted patience.

Kath.gifSummer Kath –  Senior Vice President, Business Development Cambria – 
A results-oriented leader, Summer Kath has strengths in relationship development, marketing strategy, interior design vision, product development and event creation. Summer has been with Cambria for 15 years, since the inception of Cambria, holding various leadership positions within marketing and sales. Today, Summer leads the business development division at Cambria focusing on strategic development of business relationships and marketing initiatives across North America. To round out Summer’s professional passions, she is mother to Sienna (11) and Lyla (9) and is committed to a lifelong journey of personal health and wellness through cycling, yoga, kickboxing and running.

Landvik.gifLorna Landvik – Author, Entertainer – ONCE IN A BLUE MOON LODGE is Lorna Landvik’s new novel.  She is the author of ten others, including the best-selling ANGRY HOUSEWIVES EATING BON BONS and PATTY JANE’S HOUSE OF CURL. She is also an actor and playwright and frequently performs a one-woman, all-improvised show, PARTY IN THE REC ROOM. 

McLean (2).gifLeah McLean – News Anchor - KSTP-TV – Leah is currently a news anchor at 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS.  She has worked as a producer, reporter and now anchors the 5, 6 and 10 pm news.  Before coming back to her home town of Minneapolis she also worked in Tuscon, AZ, Bend, OR and Wausau, WI.  She lives in the West Metro with her husband and two girls.  When she isn’t working she may be out running, getting ready for a 5k or 10k race.

Miller, Leslee.gifLeslee Miller – Founder – Amusee, Certified Sommelier - Leslee Miller is a dually certified Sommelier through the International Sommelier Guild and the Court of Master Sommeliers. She is the sole owner of wine consulting firm, Amusée, founded in 2004, based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. With a background in hospitality, Leslee's services provide: consulting & staff training for restaurants and retail, international winery consulting, commercial & residential cellar management, wine writing and spokesperson/media work, corporate & private event planning, wine/cooking education classes, and catered/pairing events for all levels of wine enthusiasts. Her energizing personality and great passion for wine and food make the world of food and wine a fun place to imbibe!

Murphy.gifErin Murphy – Minnesota House of Representatives – District 64A – Representative Erin Murphy currently serves district 64A in the Minnesota House of Representatives. Rep. Murphy first received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. From there she went on to attain her Master’ s in Organizational Leadership from the College of St. Catherine where she currently teaches nurses earning a Doctorate of Nursing Practice. She practiced surgical nursing before going to work for the Minnesota Nurses Association. During her public service,  Rep. Murphy has been a champion for education, economic opportunity, women’ s reproductive rights, and healthcare related issues. Rep. Murphy has represented the mighty citizens of district 64A in Saint Paul since 2006 and she loves her job.

Newquist.gifMegan Newquist – Morning Anchor - KSTP TV – Megan is an Emmy Award Winning Anchor, honored twice last year for Breaking News coverage and Best Newscast. Megan was instrumental in Children’s Hospital Association being the recipient of $63,600 when she and Patrick Hammer of KTSP appeared on “Who Wants to be a Millionaire” and won that amount in 2010 for CHA.


Martha Rossini Olson – Sweet Martha’s Cookies – Martha is best known as “Sweet Martha” and has been selling her oven-hot baked, chocolate chip cookies for over 30 years.  After several failed applications to sell frozen yogurt at the Minnesota State Fair, “Sweet Martha’s” was finally approved for a food booth making about 200 cookies in 12 minutes.  Today, they churn out 24,000 cookies in 12 minutes!


Perkins.gifKat Perkins – Singer – Kat appeared on The Voice Season 6 and advanced to the show’s semifinals. Mentored by Adam Levine, Kat climbed her way to the Top 5 spot! A native of the tiny town of Scranton, ND. Kat has resided in Minneapolis, Minnesota since 1999 when she began working in Hey City Theater Production Company. Kat has opened for Bon Jovi and travelled to the Middle East to entertain American military troops. Kat has released four albums since The Voice with two of her singles charting inside #20 on the iTunes Charts! Her latest single is called Long Time Comin' and can be found at all major outlets.

Pierce.gifDeb Pierce – Retired Senior Executive FBI Special Agent – In 2006, Deb retired as the FBI’s Deputy Assistant Director of the Criminal Investigative Division and former Agent in charge of the Minneapolis FBI.   Her 27 years with the FBI were spent investigating and managing criminal and terrorist, investigations in multiple offices.  Since retirement her international contacts have taken her to places such Tajikistan and Peru to promote leadership for women in public service.


Roshini  Rajkumar Presence Engineer – Author Communicate That! - Roshini is a presence engineer and author of Communicate That! She is managing editor and host of News & Views with Roshini Rajkumar on WCCO Radio and an analyst for media outlets around the country, including regular commentary for Twin Cities Live on KSTP-TV and Breaking the News on KARE-TV. When she’s not on the air, Roshini is an executive coach, national keynote speaker and event emcee. For examples of powerful presence content, go to


Ries.gifElizabeth Ries – Co-Host on Twin Cities Live - KSTP-TV – Elizabeth co-hosts Twin Cities Live weekdays at 3 pm KSTP and delivers daily doses of celebrity news during her Dirt Alerts on myTalk 107.1 at 8:20 am, 12:20 pm and 5:20 pm. Elizabeth and her husband are the proud parents of a two year old daughter and are expecting their second baby this summer. You’ll often find Elizabeth cleaning out her backyard chicken coop and weeding her garden in Minneapolis. 

Sand.gifChristine Sand - Dancing Dragonfly Winery - Christine Sand and her husband Bill Bluhm own Dancing Dragonfly Winery, located an hour north of the Twin Cities in St. Croix Falls, WI. While it was never their dream to own a winery, it is now a dream come true with over 100 acres that include a winemaking facility, tasting room, and event center. Before owning a winery, Christine was a community volunteer for many organizations and she continues to put her lawyer skills to use at the winery. She is also a breast cancer survivor, and she and her husband actively support a number of local, regional, and international charities.

Sawkar.gifVineeta Sawkar – Senior Communications Advisor – HealthPartners Institute – Vineeta Sawkar is a five time Emmy award-winning television anchor who is now leading communications for HealthPartners Institute. Vineeta spent twenty-three years in the television news business. She is best known for her eighteen years at KSTP-TV in Minneapolis. She left KSTP in 2013 and pioneered a new role at the Minneapolis Star Tribune as a video host. She is now Senior Communications Advisor at HealthPartners Institute which includes medical researchers and educators. She and her family are proud St. Paul residents. Vineeta is a former Children's Hospital Association board member and Lunch Bunch guild member. 

Scott.gifSue Scott – Actor and Vocal Talent, A Prairie Home Companion – After 24 years as the female cast member on Garrison Keillor’s public radio show, A Prairie Home Companion, Sue has rejoined the local theatre scene. She was seen on stage this past Fall in Barbecue at Mixed Blood Theater and in May will appear in Little Wars, with Prime Productions. Sue is a veteran voice talent who has also enjoyed some fun and challenging roles in film and television, most notably ABC’s In An Instant and the Netflix series Lady Dynamite.

Shortal.gifJana Shortal – Anchor/Reporter – Breaking The News – KARE 11 – A full baker’s dozen. That’s how many years Jana has worked as a reporter for KARE 11 news here in Minneapolis – it is also the same amount of time she has spent wondering if she could ever really be that much needed addition to the now defunct Destiny’s Child. But she’s for sure gonna name her first child, Destiny, just to get remotely close to that brand. 


Stephanie Silvers – Founder and Executive Director - Dress for Success - Stephanie Silvers is the Executive Director at Dress for Success Twin Cities, where she has worked since the organization was founded in 2010.  With more than 10 years of experience in non-profit development and leadership, Stephanie took over as the Executive Director in January 2016. Stephanie has spent her career advocating and leading social change programs and initiatives to help women thrive in work and life. She has guided the company in growing to a half-million dollar organization and reaching over 4,000 women in the Twin Cities.  She recently won the Wavemaker’s Community Impact award for the work she is doing. 

Sullivan.gifCaryn Sullivan – Author Bitter or Better, Columnist Caryn donned her “Medical Crisis Manager” hat at Children’s Hospital when her 10-year-old daughter was diagnosed with a deadly disease. With her autistic son as the donor she nursed Julia through a bone marrow transplant -months after completing breast cancer treatment. But when Caryn’s “W” changed from “wife” to “widow” she faltered – and faced a choice. She could be bitter or better. Now a resilience expert by default, be it in her award-winning memoir, Bitter or Better, her Pioneer Press columns, her Gifts, Gratitude & Gumption blog, her media commentary, or as a speaker, Caryn offers a roadmap to resilience.


Patti Weber – President - Woman’s Club Minneapolis CIA Executive (ret.) – Patti retired from the CIA Senior Intelligence Service after a 31-year career. While she spent most of her career under cover, her last position was Chief of Policy for the National Clandestine Service working with U.S. military and other federal intelligence and law enforcement agencies on such issues as watch listing terrorists and information sharing. She is currently one of the partners with Pierce-Weber Partnership, LLC.



 Deborah Yungner – CEO/Founder & Chief Visioneer, ERBUS Inc. – Deborah’s career spanned 25+ years successfully launching technology innovation for Fortune 500/5000 companies before becoming a highly awarded inventor, innovator and entrepreneur.  Deborah's awards include: United States Woman Inventor of the Year; Best U.S. Technology (besting over 1,000 inventions worldwide), multiple business and innovation awards for the patented invention of ERBUS LifeGRID Technologies.  In 2014, Deborah was titled Mrs. Eagan International/Mrs. Minnesota International People’s Choice Award, inspiring young girls into STEM Science/Technology careers. Deborah enjoys family time, Board work, gourmet cooking, and her new venture, CoCreateX, tapping the power and potential of community!