Director of Executive and Professional Education
Hartford International University for Religion & Peace (formerly known as Hartford Seminary)
Full Name, Part II: I am formerly known as Katy Bannister. Original name and original husband – Jim Bannister. I never legally took Jim’s name but used it while our boys were in school. Ultimately decided to switch back to mine.
Education/Alma Mater: University of Wisconsin-Madison
Morning News Sources: CT Public Radio
Hometown/Current town: West Hartford
How long have you worked in your current position? I have been in my current role for seven months.
Did you have a job that might surprise people? I grew up in Wisconsin. At 14, I hit the road to be a mother’s helper for the summer. Best way to make money at that age. I worked for a family in the Chicago suburbs. This was a lucrative and exciting adventure!
What do you value most about CWC? I love opportunities to gather with interesting women!
Best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten? My dad taught me the value of persistence and gave me this quote which I laminated and often carry in my purse. It has served me well for decades —–
“Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan Press On! has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.” Calvin Coolidge
Piece of advice for people entering your field / looking to excel in your field? For any field, do something that brings you joy and purpose.
Proud moment or accomplishment you’d like to share? I am grateful for a lifetime of dear friends.
First Job in high school: At 15, with a work permit, I got a job as a clerk in a jewelry store.
Dream Job (besides current): Host of a talk radio show like Fresh Air.
Bucket List Item: Travel the country with my dear husband stopping at national parks and botanical gardens.
Hobbies (and any new ones started during pandemic): Gardening.
Favorite Restaurant (and items you recommend): Harry’s Pizza Bishop’s Corner / Prosciutto and Arugula w/ Asiago Cheese Pizza
Favorite Podcast: Moth Radio Hour
TV Character most like you: I’d like to say (so I will) Madam Secretary.
Vacation Spot: Annual trip with family to Avalon, NJ
Favorite Movie: The Way We Were. And if it’s Christmas, ELF!
The Walker Group
Education/Alma Mater: University of Virginia, School of Engineering & Applied Sciences
Morning News Sources: I limit news to twice a week at most – too anxiety inducing every day. I prefer local news sources like WFSB and NBC30.
Hometown/Current town: Grew up in Torrington, Lived in Farmington for the last 18 years.
How long have you worked in your current position? Been with the company for 18 ½ years and in my current role for the last 4 years.
Did you have a job that might surprise people? My first ‘real’ job was working for a bagel shop. Up at 4am to start making the bagels – not my favorite work hours but I had the best boss ever and she is still a friend and mentor to me today.
What do you value most about CWC? I value the meaningful connections made at each and every event. The combination of the excellent programs/venues and the inspirational and humble members make this group something I hold near and dear to my heart.
Best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten? Don’t wait for things to be perfect – just go for it! Like Harry Truman said, “Imperfect action is better than perfect inaction.”
Piece of advice for people entering your field / looking to excel in your field? If you are interested in the technology field, make sure you have a strong foundation in business as well. Technology is a business driver – decisions on both must be made in tandem or neither will succeed.
Proud moment or accomplishment you’d like to share? Professional accomplishment: When my company was named the #1 Best Place to Work in CT the year after my partner and I assumed our roles as co-Managing Partners. Personal accomplishment: Watching my kids grow up to be incredibly kind, sensitive, caring, and emotional intelligent humans.
First Job in high school: Bagel shop, see above!
Dream Job (besides current): The honest truth is that I have never (even as a child) had a dream job. Even when I try to ‘dream’ one up, not much sounds appealing to me or I find fatal flaws with everything. So I guess my dream job would be retirement??!
Bucket List Item: To attend a live recording of Saturday Night Live.
Hobbies (and any new ones started during pandemic): Hiking, Singing, Skiing, Golfing, True Crime podcasts, and Genealogy research (that one is new since the pandemic! LOVE IT!)
Favorite Restaurant (and items you recommend): The Charles in Old Wethersfield. Everything on their menu is incredible!
Favorite Podcast: Crime Junkie
TV Character most like you: Claire Dunphy from Modern Family
Vacation Spot: Cape May, NJ or Punta Cana, DR
Favorite Movie: PeeWee’s Big Adventure (Don’t judge me…it was the first VHS my family ever owned and I watched it literally hundreds of times…very nostalgic!)