Power of CREW

November 22, 2021
Written by: Taylor Branstetter

Convention Inspires, Energizes 

Taylor Branstetter, Credit Analyst with Stifel Bank & Trust, recently attended the CREW National Convention thanks in part to a scholarship from CREW-St. Louis. The first-time Convention attendee shares how Convention gave her insights, inspiration and invigoration.

I recently had the opportunity to attend my first CREW Network Convention in Las Vegas. I attended various sessions that benefited either my professional career or personal life. My favorite sessions included The Future of Office, Repurposing Real Estate, and the keynote presentations by Linda Alvarado and Sarah Thomas. 
The breakout sessions gave great insight to bring back to the office. 

As a commercial real estate lending analyst, it is helpful to hear industry experts give their various perspectives on the market so I can make an educated conclusion. 

On the other hand, it was inspiring to hear the stories of the speakers, especially Linda Alvarado and Sarah Thomas. Linda energized me the first morning with her sense of humor and encouraging story. In banking, I am surrounded by men just as Linda is as well in her construction business. Hearing her story reminded me that it doesn’t matter that I might be the only female in the room because I can do anything I want when I put my mind to it. 
It was equally inspiring to hear the stories of fellow CREW Members. I’m still young in my career path so it is empowering to see what other women have accomplished. They also demonstrate that everyone can balance the “struggles” of being a woman. I am sometimes overwhelmed with everyday life. It helps me to surround myself with others that are at the top of their game in their career while also balancing the day-to-day responsibilities at home. These successful women serve as role models, a constant reminder that my opportunities are endless. 
Convention is a great place to get to know CREW Network Members outside of our chapter. I had drinks with a client from California, and I ran into a fellow CREW Member from Indy that I met at the Leadership Summit in St. Louis. CREW provided the connection to meet these women. 
Convention was also like a mini vacation while bettering myself. I am not going to lie, I enjoyed spending time at the pool, eating good food and having drinks with good company. 

Convention is a great opportunity to better oneself, uplift others, network, and get to know other members not only as business partners but as friends. Thank you CREW-St. Louis and Stifel for giving me this opportunity!