If It's Not One Thing...It's Your MOTHER.

patty | Friday May 12, 2017

A Mother and Daughter relationship can be a complicated thing, filled with laughter and tears...successes and failures...joy and angst. And, some of us are blessed enough to have a Mom who is right by our side through all of the trials and tribulations that are...LIFE. I am fortunate to be such a daughter.

It was not so long ago that, whenever I went anywhere, I was always referred to as "Marilyn Pendergast's daughter"; a moniker I wear proudly to this day. I am also proudly accepting an award on her behalf next Friday, as she will receive the 2017 Key4Women Achieve Award.

Growing up, my Mother had to frequently travel for business. But, she ALWAYS made it to the dance recital, the piano recital, the play that I was in...in short, she made it HER job to not only work to afford me these opportunities, she SHOWED up for all the little times of my life.

For those not aware, my Mother has been a partner at UHY LLC for over 50 years. She is also Managing Director of UHY Advisors. During her 50 year esteemed career, she has served as an inspiration not only to me, but to countless other women. She was the first FEMALE President of the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants, and the first woman and first non-attorney to head the New York State Supreme Court Committee on Professional Standards. She has received countless awards for her place in the Accounting community. But, it is her commitment to charity that has perhaps been most inspirational to me. She leads by example.

Her mantra has always been, "If you are able to give of yourself in any capacity, it is God's will that you do so."

And so, I followed the path that she had already helped to sow for me. It is NOT an easy task to be charged with ME as a child. You can imagine. Precocious and perpetually curious as a child, I remember her scurrying after me on the beach, as a tender 2-year old Patty decided she wanted to speak French to the sweet, albeit SURPRISED French-Canadian couple, enjoying their day in the sun. I am not much different today. Our perspectives are different. She is very matter-of-fact...I am very "what if?". She has her feet firmly planted in the ground...mine are more on tippy-toes, always trying to see what ELSE is out there. She is oriented in facts...my mind goes more to the fantastical. And yet, it is our very differences that make our bond so unbreakable.

Did she hope at some time that i would follow in her path and embrace Accounting as she did? Most likely. But, when I determined that the world of food and wine was truly my calling and I enrolled in Culinary School, she couldn't have been prouder. And, I embraced my calling just as she embraced hers..with unabashed enthusiasm and a commitment to excellence. Another lesson I learned from her...if you are going to do something, you must do it to the very best of your ability. The fact that she can have Lobster Pie and Chocolate Souffle on command probably doesn't hurt either. In fact, that is what I will be preparing for her on this Mother's Day.

I have always followed her lead and have been passionately involved in numerous charities for the past 20 years. I am proud to have helped such charities as Big Brothers Big Sisters, The Arthritis Foundation, CAPTAIN Youth and Family Services, among numerous others. I donate much of my time and passion to Schenectady County Community College, where I serve as Advisory Board President for the Hotel, Culinary Arts & Tourism program. I am also proud to serve as Adjunct Professor for Wines of the World there, where I TRY to inject my passion for food and wine into the minds of the culinary students there. It is not always easy...but it is ALWAYS worth it.

Yes, my Mother's shoe size may only be a petite 5 1/2...yet, they are the largest shoes to fill. I can only hope that some of the work that i am doing is a beginning point. A transition from Mother's Model to Daughter's Diligence. A "Changing of the Guard" from Trailblazer to Follow The Leader.

She recently attended an event for a Board that she sits on and was introduced as "Patty's Mom". She found that to be, in her words.."REALLY NEAT, Patsy".

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Happy Mother's Day Indeed. Cheers.

Tags: madaddie marketing mother's day marilyn pendergast UHY key4women mom


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