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SERVANT LEADERSHIP

Q&A With Crystal Arredondo, NAWBO National Board Immediate Past Chair

It takes a special person to give their time and talent to a cause close to their heart—especially when they’re already so busy running a successful business. This new NAWBO ONE column highlights the amazing women leaders who serve on the NAWBO National Board of Directors, beginning with our Immediate Past Chair Crystal Arredondo.

Crystal is a partner at MPACT Financial Group and a retirement planning specialist. After obtaining her MBA in Finance at the University of North Texas, she began her career as a financial advisor. She realized that her parents could have avoided many difficult obstacles in running their own small family business for years with financial guidance and trusted advice. As a result, her passion is working with people to provide a “total strategy” for a successful retirement. Another area of focus is helping owners of closely held businesses plan for succession and transition out of their businesses.

We recently spoke to Crystal about NAWBO:

How long have you been a NAWBO member and why did you first join?

I’ve been a member for 10 years. I remember my very first meeting. One of my colleagues invited me to a luncheon and I was very new in the financial planning business. I was amazed and inspired by the women I met that day. Many of them had seasoned businesses and were community leaders. I remember thinking, “I found my tribe! If I hang around these women long enough, I’ll be like them one day.”

What’s the one greatest benefit you’ve received from your involvement with NAWBO, and how has it impacted you and your business?

I have grown my business in tandem with my involvement with NAWBO. One of the greatest benefits is growing both professionally and personally along the way. It has pushed me out of my comfort zone many times and I am a much stronger person for it.

Why did you want to serve on the NAWBO National Board and what do you hope to accomplish?

There have been several National presidents from Dallas/Fort Worth and I admire and respect them greatly as I’ve grown to know them on my journey. They set a high bar for not only building successful companies, but also giving back with a servant heart to advance the pathway for women-owned businesses. I come from a family of strong women who made sacrifices to see a better tomorrow. I wanted to be part of this movement.

What other women’s or community causes are important to you and what are you doing to support them?

NAWBO has been my passion for many years and I’ve poured my heart into this organization. I am currently the chair for the NAWBO Institute and education is the next great platform we can use to advance our mission to create more leaders for a world of change.

If you could tell every NAWBO member one thing about making the most of their membership, what would it be?

Get involved! And get involved early! 

Why do you think every NAWBO member should consider taking on a leadership role with their chapter or at the national level—whether it’s on a committee or board?

It takes a team to run a successful board. I watch and learn from other ladies on the Board all the time when it comes to how they process and deal with issues. NAWBO is so powerful because it’s women working together to help women. We are one voice and can lead by example that passion and purpose drives change, not egos. 

What’s something surprising that most people don’t know about you?

I like to cook and try out new recipes. I really love to grill! 

What’s your favorite inspirational quote?

There have been many over the years, but one in particular has stuck with me:

Dear Future, I trust you.