By Tina Paknejad '10
After receiving her degree in social sciences from Binghamton, Margaret "Maggie" Bellville '76 joined the wireless – back then, known as cellular – industry in a position she calls “lower than whale poop”. However, in a speech she made at the 5th annual WICT Rocky Mountain Hall of Fame Gala, it was “while crawling on the ocean’s bottom that I learned what for me has been the secret to my success: Be a rose among marigolds.”
Today, she is a partner at the executive search firm CarterBaldwin in Roswell, Ga., where she draws upon her relentless drive and the experience she gained at places such as Cox Communications, at which she worked her way up to executive vice president of operations.
Even in today’s dire economic climate, Bellville finds a way to stay optimistic. She shares such insight with executives and CEOs, helping them fill holes in their organizational designs created by downsizing.
“This time in our economy gives all of us the perfect opportunity to look at innovation,” she said. “What can we or should we be doing better, more efficiently, or more effectively to run our business when we start going forward? One thing we know for sure [is that] people will make buying decisions differently after all of this. People will spend their money differently. How do we modify and innovate in our businesses to be ready?”
Often times, Bellville reminds executives that networking is enormously valuable.
“Jobs are not growing on trees,” Bellville says. “Smart executives are out there learning about companies, meeting new and different people, and networking with new and different people. You have to make it your job to find a job.”
Because of her commitment and achievements in the cable and telecommunications industries, Bellville has earned prestigious awards such as the Woman of the Year in 1995, and she was named one of the Top Ten Women in Business in 2000.
However, to Bellville, none of these moments compared to winning the 2008 AQHA World Champion Showmanship title; she felt all the decades of riding horses finally paid off.
“It represented everything we do in life,” she said. “Work hard, be dedicated, have a competitive edge, and the will to win.”