Succeeding in business doesn’t have to be a “man’s world”, especially if women know about the options available to them.

The first of three forums that focus on helping women succeed in the business world took place in Monmouth University’s Woodrow Wilson Hall and featured a speech from Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno as well as panel comprised of prominent females within the business community.

Spearheaded by shore Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande, the four person panel included Terri Boyer, Executive Director of the Center for Women and Work at Rutgers School of Management and Labor Relations; Melanie Willoughby, Senior Vice President of the New Jersey Business and Industry Association; Candace Straight, Director, Neuberger and Berman Mutual Funds and Montpelier Re, a property and casualty, reinsurance company; and Virginia Alling, Managing Director of PNC Bank and co-chairwoman of the New Jersey Technology Council.

Lieutenant Governor Guadagno spoke about the challenges that many women face, specifically caring for children and family, building or rebuilding a resume, and looking for a job. She pointed attendees of the forum to to look for positions and help construct a resume.

She notes the job market in the state is favorable towards female employees and owners.

”You will find New Jersey has the highest number of women hired in the last eight years, more than in any other state in the union and most likely to grow their business.”

Guadagno says that women need to take full advantage of the resources that are available to them, especially since she notes after question about child care and resume building, the most frequent queries she gets is from women wanting to know about funding for their business.

Casagrande says the ultimate goal of the panels is “to create an environment and a cultural change, where we see a pyramid that is no longer a pyramid and instead has the same amount of women at the top level of the work force as the entry level.”

The next panel meeting will be at 10:30 on June 5th at the Carnegie Library Center in Atlantic City, 35 S. Dr. MLK, Jr. Blvd.