The 2017 SouthCoast Women’s Forum will be held at Rosebrook Event Center, located at 50 Rosebrook Place, Wareham, MA 02571 on Wednesday, May 3rd from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

The SouthCoast Women’s Forum is the ideal setting for leading business professionals, and aspiring women in business to connect, learn, and be inspired by other women! The dynamic panel discussion will be moderated by Ashely Bendiksen, Inspirational Speaker, Activist, Writer and Consultant.

The four inspiring women panelists are Anastassia Gonye, of Tuff Kookooshka; Lauren L. Lemieux, ACC, CPC of Coaching to Fullfill Dreams; Milagros Sanchez-Gaton of the Marion Institute/SouthCoast Energy Challenge and Sheri Weintraub MS DABR, Southcoast Centers for Cancer Care.  These driven women will elaborate on their professional and personal journeys, hurdles they’ve overcome, as well as their future career goals and everything in between. Get ready to connect with these inspirational women!

Anastassia Gonye

Anastassia Gonye, a Russian born American artist, and fashion designer, is the creator and owner of Tuff Kookooshka, founded in 1999. ” My Grandparents were both theater artists for The Russian theater in St. Petersburg. My grandmothers’ costume design paintings hang in my studio for inspiration. My mother worked in ateliers of the leading couture houses in Moscow. She was also the Master of Embroidery for the Russian Olympic figure Skating team.”

Tuff Kookooshka has steadily grown from very humble beginnings. ” I started to design my line at my kitchen table, sewing in the basement, using discarded fabrics sold at the factory by the pound.” Now many years later, Tuff Kookooshka is sold in stores and boutiques across America, in Canada, and Japan. Tuff Kookooshka also participates in several high end juried art shows per year, and operates a Retail Shop / Design Studio in Cataumet, Massachusetts on Cape Cod. All of their clothing is MADE IN USA, using locally manufactured fabrics and notions. We use Polartec fleece produced in Lawrence Massachusetts and add other fun materials for embellishments.

Lauren L. Lemieux

Lauren L. Lemieux, ACC, CPCC, provides Whole Life Coaching through her business Coaching To Fulfill Dreams. Lauren graduated from Dartmouth High School and UMass Dartmouth with a Bachelor’s degree in Humanities and Social Science.   After spending 18 years working in the family business, Lauren resigned in January, 2013, to find her true calling and soon discovered the profession of coaching.  Lauren is now a certified life coach from both the Coaches Training Institute and the International Coaching Federation.  Coaching To Fulfill Dreams is her coaching business, where she engages her clients to evoke their confidence and courage to embrace what is truly possible in the personal and professional lives.  She also works part time at Catholic Social Services coaching clients who are or were recently homeless to support them as they transition to stability.  Lauren and her family reside in Acushnet.  Lauren is very involved in the community including volunteering for the Acushnet Youth Athletic Association’s and Global Learning Charter Public School in New Bedford. She is on the Board of Directors for both the Acushnet Federal Credit Union and Community Boating Center in New Bedford.  Lauren has also been a mentor for EforAll (Entrepreneurship for All) and the LifeWork Project.

Milagros Sanchez

Milagros Sanchez is originally from the Dominican Republic and moved looking for the “American Dream”. She graduated Bristol community college and is working in her BA at Simmons College. Her passion is to help, Advocate, and make a difference in the community. Because of her community involvement and academic success she was the winner of the “29 who shine Award” And represented Bristol Community college at the state house. “Millie” as she likes to be called, has experience working as a peer educator and as a facilitator for the Girl Scouts. Millie works as SouthCoast Energy Challenge Community Outreach Manager for the Marion Institute. You can find Millie Volunteering or spending time with her twin daughters.


Sheri Weintraub

Sheri Weintraub is the chief physicist and director of radiation oncology at the Southcoast Centers for Cancer Care.  She has been a physicist since 1999 and has served long-standing leadership roles where she has balanced administrative duties along with clinical physics work.  Effective communication is vital in any organization, but she particularly enjoys the challenges of bridging these two very important and distinct areas.  Sheri has a particular passion for patient safety and currently serves on a national health care advisory committee to review medical incidents in radiation oncology.  She is pursuing her PhD in Health Science at Nova Southeastern University and is looking forward to expanding her patient safety work through that academic environment. She serves on the alumni network committee for Leadership Southcoast and remains active in her hometown community of Easton, MA.  In her spare time she enjoys kickboxing and other physical fitness activities.  Sheri’s primary and favorite role is as a mom to nine and eleven-year old daughters, to three canine “children”, and as a wife to her high school sweetheart.

All of these inspiring and accomplished women have been trailblazers and overcome challenges with perseverance and resilience, which has allowed them to pave the way for all women professionally!

Admission for the event is $45.00 to SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce members and $55.00 for non-members.  Tables of ten are also available.   For more information, please contact Deven Tillman, Events Manager, at the SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce, 508-999-5231, ext. 26 or visit REGISTER ONLINE HERE.

The 2017 SouthCoast Women’s Forum is hosted by the SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce with supporting sponsors Cox Media and Sylvia Group and Small Business Sponsors; Advance Air & Heat Company, BayCoast Bank, Care Free Homes Inc., Katie Brown Educational Program, Partners Insurance, Plimouth Investment Advisors, Urgent Care | American Family Care and media sponsor New Bedford Guide.