Stepping Up: The Importance of Taking on a Leadership Role from a Young Age

Growing up in Queens, New York, GlamourGals advisory board member Liz Martin shared a room with her late grandmother, Modesta, who became accustomed to having her around. It was a sense of comfort to Modesta back then, knowing that Liz was near. Liz was her grandmother’s caregiver, taking her to doctor appointments, picking up her medication, driving her to meetings and keeping her company if Modesta had to go to the hospital. Liz knows how meaningful such a bond is. “What GlamourGals volunteers are doing is huge,” Liz said, “because it’s more than the makeover, it’s the companionship they offer to people that haven’t had contact with others in days, weeks, months, and now they have someone to talk to from the outside world.”

Liz thinks that teaching young women how to be leaders in their communities is invaluable, and something that isn’t necessarily taught in school. That’s why she loves GG events like the GSA’s and the GlamourGals Leadership Training Institute (GLTI).

“It’s so important to understand what it means to be a leader, to stand up for what you believe in and keep focused,” Liz says. “It’s what helps you get over every hurdle in life. The chapter leaders and volunteers take on a role and responsibility that other people don’t want to take on by visiting senior homes. Our volunteers are our biggest asset. They make the time and they make that sacrifice.”

As manager of her family business, Martin Brothers Wine & Spirits, since 2010, Liz had to quickly take on a leadership position of her own, one that she wasn’t quite sure she was ready for.

“When I took over the business, I had to learn every aspect of it,” she explains. “I took wine classes and learned about wine. I said I’m going to make this happen. It was a challenge. It really helped me, because I proved to myself that if I put my mind to it, I can do it.”

As chairwoman of this year’s GSA’s, Liz secured a venue for the event, the JW Marriott Essex House in New York City and besides being the largest donor for the event herself, she has brought in additional donors. Liz loves to exercise, so she organized two boot camp classes at her local gym, Better Body Boot Camp in Bayside, Queens, over the weekend of May 10 and 11, with all the proceeds going to support GlamourGals. She points out that being involved with GlamourGals can impact women at all aspects of their life: in high school, college, as recent grads and later on in life as supporters.

“One of the things I realized with GlamourGals is that I too can make a difference,” Liz says. “To me GlamourGals represents everything a woman can be in different stages of her life. There are many ways to grow with GlamourGals."

GlamourGals is thrilled to have advisory board member Liz Martin take on the role of chairwoman for the 2014 Glammy Scholarship Awards. Her incredible support and dedication has made the event possible. Liz is the general manager and wine buyer at Martin Brothers Wine & Spirits, a business in the Upper West Side neighborhood of Manhattan, that has been in her family for almost 30 years. Her favorite way to relax is at home with her family, with a glass of well-made wine.