Bobcat Founder & Principal
"It’s about reaching out and connecting with others to enhance their personal and business lives. Sometimes you are asked for help and sometimes you just do it. Being truthful and honest opens the relationship and creates a family bond. The Bobcat Initiative is all about encouraging women to become change-agents in their communities by lending their expertise and God-given talent to help others in a loving, caring and sharing manner.”
Barbara A. Washington, CSEP
From the heart of the hot Delta of Bourbon, Mississippi and the gold cache of Fort Knox in the Blue Grass state of Kentucky and fresh from an extended stay in Nuremberg, Germany, Barbara Washington stepped into the Gateway City three decades ago. With a heaping helping of Southern hospitality and a dash of European flair, Washington has the unique ingredients for success in the world of public-relations, fund-raising and special events. She is also an accomplished motivational speaker and Gospel vocalist. The event management and public-relations expert was affiliated with the St. Louis-based, non-profit Mathews-Dickey Boys’ & Girls’ Club for more than 30 years, where she honed her expertise and caring spirit for helping and mentoring others.
Washington emphasizes honesty, integrity and accountability in all her work; and her motto is:
“My word is my bond.”
The evolution of The Bobcat International Women’s Career Mentoring Initiative (BIWCM&SI) began three decades ago when Bobcat Founder and Principal Barbara Washington met her longtime friend and mentor, Alice Spivey, a Marriott Hotel hospitality executive. Washington was so inspired by Spivey’s powerful mentoring spirit and commitment to helping others she launched the career-mentoring initiative to celebrate her legacy. The signature program, the Bobcat’s International Women’s Day “TeaBags of Love” Career Mentoring Forum, is held annually on International Women’s Day. It encourages women to utilize their innate abilities to inspire others to build confidence through “loving, caring and sharing.” The Career Mentoring Forum also challenges women to discover their unique God-given talents to achieve business and personal success. International diversity is displayed by colorful attire, reflective of a variety of cultures and nationalities, as old and new friends network and converse about the landscape and nuances of the business environment in the world today.
Annual International Women’s Day “TeaBags of Love” Career Mentoring Forum featuring six career panelists, facilitated by a Career Expert, highlighting Bobcat’s career mentorship principles of: cooperation, dependability, loyalty, respect, trust, patience and understanding
Round Table “TeaBags of Love” HotTopic Career Mentoring Tea Talk, facilitated by a career experts at a local restaurant or Tea Room
Graduation Trunk Party for a college-bound high school senior
Awardee host-sponsored mentor/mentee “TeaBags of Love”
HotTopic Career Mentoring Tea Talks
in major cities throughout the U.S. and globally.
Awarding of annual college internship scholarship to a future communications, journalism and/or non-profit major.”