2021 Summit Sessions and Speakers

2021 Summit Graphic Final
Thank you to Shape Your Cape Summit speakers, facilitators, panelists, sponsors, and participants for your contributions to a very successful 2021 Summit!
Special thanks to the CCYP Summit Committee for volunteering a tremendous amount of time to planning our first-ever virtual Summit in a way that reengaged the CCYP community in exchanging ideas and tackling issues of direct relevance to the Cape's young workforce and future leaders.
The 2021 Summit details are still posted below. Please share your feedback on this year's Summit and your ideas for the 2022 in-person event - all input welcome!



8:30 AM-8:45 AM | Summit Welcome and Introductions
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8:45 AM-9:45 AM | Morning Keynote

Keynote Speaker: Julie Brown

Networking Your Way to Increased Influence and Success

Our morning keynote speaker, Julie Brown, is a sought after speaker, networking expert, business strategist, podcast host, and author of This Shit Works: A No-Nonsense Guide to Networking Your Way to More Friends, More Adventures, and More Success, released in June 2020.

If you cringe at the thought of attending a networking event (virtual or otherwise) or if you’re just looking to expand your professional network and advance your career, Julie’s advice and tips strike the perfect balance of humor and expertise gained from more than 20 years of networking experience. Julie will show you how at any stage of your career, you can unapologetically be who you are authentically and still be WILDLY successful.

Thank you to Summit Keynote Sponsor Eastern Bank for making this session possible.

9:45 AM-9:55 AM | Transition to Breakout 1
9:55 AM-10:55 AM | Breakout 1

Session 1 | Wellbeing vs. Wellness

Selfcare for the Selfless Professional


Adam Gracia, Director of Development, Cape and Islands Veterans Outreach Center


Self-care is at an all-time low as technology blurs the boundaries between our professional and personal lives. In these unprecedented times, how do we balance work and life to ensure overall well-being? And as we return to work, however that may look, how do we not lose sight of ourselves and the importance of self-care? During this session, we will explore practical, evidenced-based approaches to support mental health and well-being.

9:55 AM-10:55 AM | Breakout 1

Session 2 | A Quick-and-Dirty Guide to Joining a Nonprofit Board

Being the Best Board Member for Yourself, Your Board, Your ED, and Your Organization


Will Rubenstein, Community Director, eforever


Join us for a fun and interactive session about joining a nonprofit Board! Gain skills in how to: interview for a Board role, navigate Board Meetings, build Board/Staff relationships, collaborate with other Board members, stay positively involved, and more. Learn when to fly at 10,000 feet (during Board Meetings!), when to be down on the runway (during Committee Meetings!), and in-between (out in the Community!). We look forward to an open and active Q+A.

10:55 AM-11:05 AM | Transition to Breakout 2
11:05 AM-12:05 PM | Breakout 2

Session 1 | It Takes a Village

Childcare Challenges on the Cape - and Opportunities to Collaborate and Innovate


Marissa Cyr, CCYP Board Clerk and Chief Operating Officer, Cape Cod & Islands Association of REALTORS


Access to affordable and high-quality childcare is a critical challenge facing families across Cape Cod, and it has only been exacerbated by the impacts of the pandemic. This panel will explore why this is such an important issue for our community and dive into the innovative and forward-thinking solutions that are being proposed and implemented on the state and town levels to help support families and ensure we provide a strong foundation for the next generation of Cape Codders.

11:05 AM-12:05 PM | Breakout 2

Session 2 | Management

How to Ensure Equity in Advancement in the Workplace


Tara Vargas Wallace, Founder and Executive Director, Amplify POC and Commissioner and Vice Chair, Cape and Islands Commission on the Status of Women


  • Kara L. O’Donnell-Galvin, Executive Director, MassHire Cape & Islands Workforce Board
  • Michelle Clarke, Principal, marketing+communications, llc
  • Jeanne Morrison, President, Amplify POC and former Assistant General Manager of Diversity and Civil Rights, Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority

Diversity, equity, and inclusion represent interconnected goals meant to ensure that all individuals feel welcomed and valued among their peers. It is well-known that the unique backgrounds and perspectives contributed by a diverse workforce strengthen and improve organizations overall. The overarching goal of this panel discussion is to provide context and guidance for enhancing diversity, equity, and inclusion within your business or organization in order to create a thriving, resilient environment for all!

12:05 PM-12:10 PM | Transition to Breakout Rooms
12:10 PM-12:40 PM | Cultivating Resilience

Participate in interactive breakout sessions with professional coaches from CCYP's Laser-Focused Coaching Program.

Learn techniques and strategies for personal and professional resilience in these - and all - challenging times.


12:00 PM-12:05 PM | Summit Resumes - Welcome Back! | Sara Kohls, CCYP Board President
12:05 PM-12:15 PM | Remarks by Julian Cyr, Massachusetts State Senator
Jeni Wheeler
12:15 PM-12:55 PM | Afternoon Keynote

Keynote Speaker: Jeni Wheeler

From Reluctant Resilience to Joy - Finding Oneself in a Pandemic

When life altering injuries left Jeni Wheeler thinking like she had nothing left to give, a community came to her aid. Who knew that she would get to return the favor - and in the end, they'd continue to heal, together. Join us as we traverse Jeni's journey From Reluctant Resilience to Joy - Finding Oneself in a Pandemic. Be prepared to laugh and cry, and possibly learn a few things along the way. Jeni tackles mental health, dismantling stigma, self care, the gift of giving, what "community" can do when they collaborate, embracing joy, and of course, the benefit of one's secret ingredient being love.

Jeni Wheeler is the Co-Founder of the Cape Cod Family Table Collaborative and Owner of Jeni’s Joy. In April 2020, Jeni Wheeler, the Cape Cod Culinary Incubator (CCCI), and the American Culinary Federation of Cape Cod created the Cape Cod Family Table Collaborative to serve meals to those in need as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Jeni will tell the story of how the Cape Cod Family Table Collaborative was conceived and launched to address pandemic-driven food insecurity on Cape Cod, and share how her own personal story and that of the Cape Cod Family Table Collaborative demonstrate resilience in action.

12:55 PM-1:05 PM | Transition to Breakout 3
1:05 PM-2:05 PM | Breakout 3

Session 1 | Remote by Design

Creating Space and Managing the Moving Parts of Working Off-Site


Sarah Nitsch, CCYP Board Member and Marketing and Events Coordinator, Cape Cod Children's Place


The growth of remote work brings its own set of challenges – distractions, time-management, access to a healthy and productive workspace, missing that in-person network. It also brings opportunity, expanded career options, responsibility, and freedom. From remote by design to design for remote work, join us as we hear from two professionals on their blueprints for success in a changing work landscape.

1:05 PM-2:05 PM | Breakout 3

Session 2 | Standing In Your Power

And How to Utilize It to Make an Impact in Your Community


Tara Vargas Wallace, Founder and Executive Director, Amplify POC and Commissioner and Vice Chair, Cape and Islands Commission on the Status of Women


  • Rachael Devaney, Freelance Writer, Photo-Journalist, and Activist
  • Muska Yousuf, The Law Office of Muska Yousuf, LLC
  • Sunny Fellman, Realtor, Ally, and Activist

It’s no secret that women are a minority in leadership positions across the nation. The perspectives, experiences, and voices of women leaders are essential to the resiliency of our communities and region. In this panel we bring together leaders from across the Cape to discuss what it means to stand in your power as a woman and how to utilize that power to make an impact in your community.

2:05 PM-2:15 PM | Transition to Breakout 4
2:15 PM-3:15 PM | Breakout 4

The Pandemic Pivot, Session 1 | Transformative Change

How Local Non-Profits Adjusted to Change and Adapted to Support Community Needs - and How Cape Businesses Can Support Nonprofits in Pivoting and Rebuilding


Matt Scinto, Founder and Music Director, Cape Cod Chamber Orchestra


Nonprofits on Cape Cod are still facing a long road ahead of them. Despite a challenging year, many organizations have found innovative ways to adapt, rebuild, and reinvent themselves. In this session, nonprofit and business leaders will engage in a discussion centered around their own experiences pivoting during the pandemic, important lessons learned, and the ways Cape businesses and community partners can support nonprofit resilience in times of uncertainty.

2:15 PM-3:15 PM | Breakout 4

The Pandemic Pivot, Session 2 | Into the Fire

How Getting Creative Led to Positive Outcomes and New Ways to Measure Success


Mike Pillarella, CCYP Board Member, Executive Chef, Wianno Club, and President, American Culinary Federation of Cape Cod


In this session, listen in as three leading local business owners talk about how they adapted to the unprecedented challenges presented by COVID-19 and completely revamped their business operations to not only survive, but thrive during the pandemic. Take away lessons and principles that you can apply in your own business or career will help you become resilient and adaptable in the face of any challenge.

3:15 PM-3:20 PM | Transition to Breakout Rooms
3:20 PM-3:50 PM | Virtual Speed Networking!

Put some of the techniques you learned during Julie Brown's kickoff keynote on Day One to use in these high-speed virtual networking breakouts!

A great opportunity to connect with people from across the Cape "in person" in a fun and interactive warm-up to the Summit After Hours Connect!

3:50 PM-4:30 PM | Summit After Hours Connect!

Live virtual and motivational dance party with JT of JT Chronicles!

Celebrate Cape resilience in a high-energy Summit wrap-up complete with raffle prizes - you must be present to win!

The 2021 Summit is presented with generous support from our Presenting Sponsor, Cape Cod Healthcare.


Thank You Sponsors Slide 1