November 2010 CUP Leadership Board Spotlight – Rodneyse Bichotte

What is your occupation and how did you come to work in this area?

I have two occupations, one in corporate finance and the other in government. During the day I work in the Mergers and Acquisition Group at American Express. After receiving my MBA from Northwestern University a few years ago, I transitioned from being an engineer in the telecommunication industry to corporate finance and banking on Wall Street. After work and on weekends, I serve the Brooklyn community particularly the 42nd assembly district as the newly elected State Committeewoman District Leader. If there is legislation affecting us in DC or Albany, I communicate to the community and mobilize constituents to support our higher elected officials. At the same time when there are problems that hinder the quality of life in our local community, I reach out to the higher elected officials so that they can take action. I also designate Kings County Judgeship and hire poll workers for Election Day.

What is your strongest characteristic and how has it assisted you in your career?

My strongest characteristic is my ability to naturally build relationships with anyone from all walks of life. It has helped me engaged with colleagues, clients, and voters resulting in successful closed transactions, executing initiatives/ programs impacting the community and winning races.

Describe three lessons you have learned during your career?

1) Building relationships with all levels

2) Continuously finding ways to enhance skills and learn new skills

3) Having the will to win at all times in whatever one does; thus creating opportunities and successes

What has been your biggest accomplishment to date?

Winning the 42nd Assembly District State Committee Female District Leader Race in Brooklyn because it was a competitive race having all odds worked against me. I overcame the challenge of two formidable and determined candidates, a well known and respected 18 year incumbent and a candidate backed by the state assemblywoman. Within a short period of time we were able to put together a team that learned the election process, and developed a well organized plan for victory.

What have you learned as a Leadership Board member about the significance of board service?

I have learned that the significance of Board service is serving in a leadership capacity in directing and advising the organization that will ultimately impact the targeted audience, client, shareholders, etc... I learned that there is a time commitment that has to be taken serious.

What advice would you give someone who is interested in serving on a board?

Be ready to provide time, input and leadership in making hard decisions that will directly impact the organization. Be sure to find a role on the board that will utilize your skills and interests to fully maximize your participation.

What do you do in your free time?

I travel, exercise and spend time with family and friends.