A New Mission - Event Speakers


Sarah BatistaSarah Batista is an award-winning TV journalist, entrepreneur and speaker. Before launching her film production company, Stories to Inspire, she spent a decade reporting on thousands of stories covering crime, court, government and everything in-between. Desiring more work/life balance, the single mom "flew the coop" from WBTV in Charlotte in 2013 to pursue her dream of documentary film making. Leaving her comfort zone to launch a business was one of the most difficult decisions Batista has ever made. She has since launched the She Flew the Coop movement which includes a documentary (in process), a meet-up group, live events, panel discussions and workshops focused on sharing stories to inspire women and girls to step out of their comfort zone and pursue their dreams. Batista has been featured in local and national television outlets, including Cosmo for Latinas, the Washington Post and Investigation Discovery.

Opening Remarks

Thomas Manning is the territory sales manager overseeing North and South Carolina and Tennessee markets for Sam’s Club. He has been with Walmart/Sam’s Club Wholesale Company for 26 years in multiple capacities across the nation supporting running a number of Sam’s Clubs to market level leadership. In his new role as senior territory manager, his scope of focus is around identifying the needs of top business members within his territory, assisting with pricing, education and available programs to grow their business and leverage Sam’s Club as one of their resources. Manning has been recognized multiple times for his support of new business growth and the development of strong partnerships. He also has been a strong supporter of local communities assisting with multiple nonprofit groups


Becky Sheetz

Becky Sheetz is a business trainer and speaker, martial arts master and author. She’s an engaging speaker for corporations and women’s business groups, and her half and full day trainings have been highly regarded for transforming the way women approach and live out their careers. She’s also CEO of Care Net Pregnancy Resource Centers in the northern Virginia region.
An expert on Sun Tzu’s strategy, she speaks to groups of men and women. Her clients have included Delta Airlines, Oscar Mayer, Engility Corporation, The International Association of Women in Fire & Emergency Services (I-Women), Women’s Council or Realtors, Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business (CKGSB), Missouri Women’s Council, Diversity & Flexibility Alliance, American Health Care Association, US Naval Academy Alumni Association, Women’s Business Center of North Carolina (partnership with the SBA) and many more.
Becky is the author of Sun Tzu for Women: The Art of War for Winning in Business, and The Art of War for Small Business: Defeat the Competition and Dominate the Market with the Masterful Strategies of Sun Tzu, which has been translated into Chinese, Italian, Japanese, Spanish and Arabic. She’s  the author of the Barcharts’ widely circulated Business 101: The Art of War, and a contributor to the 2016 Women and Asian Martial Traditions, a publication of the Journal of Asian Martial Arts. Her most recent work was The Tiger & The Dragon: A Business Parable with Mark McNeilly.
A Grand Master in jujitsu, Becky teaches in Northern Virginia at Prestige Sport Martial Arts. Becky has put Sun Tzu into practice throughout her martial arts career by overcoming larger and stronger adversaries with superior strategy and execution.
She’s a former Washington Business Journal columnist whose frequently published in and interviewed by national print, web, radio and TV media. She was named to the 2011 Washington Business Journal 40 Under 40.


Karen AtilesKaren Atiles is the founder/president of Lifelong Development, LLC, which is a personal and business consulting agency. Atiles is a certified speaker, trainer and coach who retired last year from the U.S. Air Force. During her Air Force career, she served in numerous capacities in the medical field, from X-ray technician to project officer for the joint commission. Outside of the medical field she was a leadership instructor, which offered her a breadth of international experience developing countries’ most valuable resource – people. She created a two-week international trainer’s course that has professionally developed several countries’ enlisted forces. After retirement, she founded her own company to add value to individuals and businesses through personal and professional development, enabling them to reach their full potential.


Cindi Basenpiler 1

Cindi Basenspiler has more than 20 years of experience as a leader in both for-profit and nonprofit environments, as well as serving in the U.S. Army. As an Army helicopter pilot and maintenance officer, she served stateside and overseas, before transitioning out at the rank of captain. She has formerly served as the executive director of Charlotte Bridge Home, a nonprofit serving local veterans and their families. Prior to working in the nonprofit sector, Basenspiler held senior executive positions at companies such as Time Warner Cable, Kennametal and Acuity Brands, leading HR operations stateside and globally. Basenspiler holds an MBA from the University of Colorado and a bachelor’s degree from the University of South Alabama. She has owned her own company (Upshot Inc.) since 2014 and currently serves as its managing director, providing coaching for individuals and teams across the country. Basenspiler is also the co-founder of the Charlotte Veteran’s Network - an active networking event.

Shaukura Brown is the founder and CEO of M.E. in I.T. She is a U.S Air Force veteran. Brown started her company in 2016 after spending six years working with some of the world’s most powerful brands in information technology. M.E. in I.T. is a leading global information technology solutions and consulting firm. Brown is deeply involved with STEM education initiatives in the United States. She is a member of the Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) and the National Society of Black Engineers. She holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science and mathematics from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, where she was one of the top students of her class.


JamilahA New Mission - Event SpeakersJamilah L. Espinosa is a licensed attorney and owner of Espinosa Law, a law firm limited to practicing federal immigration and nationality law. She practices exclusively immigration law with an interest in citizenship, asylum and family-based cases. Espinosa enjoys the challenge of finding a path to residence for those with barriers to eligibility for immigration benefits, such as criminal convictions, long absences from the U.S., unlawful entries, prior deportations and visa fraud charges.  She documents, researches and presents cases effectively and is dedicated to assuring her clients receive the best service in their case, and they attain the best results possible.

A New Mission - Event Speakers


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