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Nell Merlino
Nell Merlino is Founder, President and CEO of Count Me In for Women’s Economic Independence, the leading national not-for-profit provider of resources for women to grow their micro businesses into million dollar enterprises.

She is author of “Stepping Out of Line: Lessons for Women Who Want It Their Way in Life, in Love, and at Work,” forthcoming from Broadway Books, a division of Random House. Throughout her career, Nell Merlino has been inspiring millions of people to take action. She is the creative force behind Take Our Daughters to Work Day, which moved more than 71 million Americans to participate in a day dedicated to giving girls the opportunity to dream bigger about their future.

Through Count Me In, Nell is now inspiring women entrepreneurs to dream big and achieve even more. She is leading a global movement to empower women entrepreneurs to grow their businesses to a million dollars and beyond by providing tools, resources, and a supportive community of their peers. Count Me In’s Make Mine a Million $ Business program reaches women entrepreneurs in communities around the country through events and on-line community. This movement will not only add millions of jobs and billions of dollars of economic activity, but take women to new levels of independence, empowering them to act as economic leaders.

Merlino is also the founder and President of Strategy Communication Action, Ltd. (SCA) in New York City, a firm specializing in the creation of public education campaigns that motivate people to act. Prior to founding Count Me In and SCA, Merlino worked on campaigns for the YWCA, The Week Without Violence, the United Nations’ Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, in two state governments, was an advance woman in presidential politics, a union organizer and a Fulbright Scholar.

Merlino lives in Manhattan with her husband, Gary Conger.

Entries by Nell Merlino

Finding Our Way Out of the Woods

(0) Comments | Posted May 6, 2014 | 3:23 PM

What happened when a world-renowned designer (Bruce Mau) and an equally well know activist and champion of women entrepreneurs (Nell Merlino) got lost in the woods together?

Nell freaked out because she wasn't sure where this was leading and how to get out of the forest.

Bruce got...

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Continuing the Legacy of Lindy Boggs

(0) Comments | Posted July 30, 2013 | 4:55 PM

Business women across America need to take a moment of exuberant and respectful appreciation for the life of Congresswoman Lindy Boggs. She passed away at 97 on Saturday according to The New York Times, her daughter Cokie Roberts, an ABC News commentator, made the announcement. Lindy Boggs helped...

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Confidence Helps Women Business Owners Take Flight

(0) Comments | Posted May 6, 2013 | 4:14 PM

A female friend of mine who teaches people how to fly told me years ago about the big difference between her male and female students. The male students almost always need to get their skill level up to their confidence level, while the female students inevitably need to get their...

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The "B" Word

(1) Comments | Posted April 19, 2013 | 3:48 PM

As I approached my 60th Birthday this week, I was reflecting on how little people change their basic nature over a lifetime. I've been called the "B" word for as long as I can remember, but it is not the one you might be thinking right now that rhymes with...

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SHE Is Responsible for the President's Safety

(1) Comments | Posted April 5, 2013 | 5:35 PM

Once again, President Obama has demonstrated his clear confidence in women leaders. He has entrusted the physical safety of his family to a woman. Last week, Julia A. Pierson became the first woman to lead the Secret Service.

With over 30 years of experience in a still...

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Marissa the Mogul Mobilizes Parents

(1) Comments | Posted March 5, 2013 | 2:02 PM

After agreeing that we want both the youngest-ever female CEO of a Fortune 500 company to succeed in turning Yahoo! around, Christine Romans and I had a fascinating conversation this past Saturday before, during and after our segment on her CNN show "Your Bottom Line." We...

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Pull Up and Lean In, Ladies!

(1) Comments | Posted February 28, 2013 | 1:16 PM

As we roll into Women's History Month each year, I like to take stock of how we're doing and it appears that our ability to do pull-ups and to "lean in" to our careers are part of the next phase of the working women's movement.

Already in the first quarter...

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No Such Thing as a Snow Day for Entrepreneurs -- And That's a Good Thing!

(0) Comments | Posted February 12, 2013 | 11:56 AM

As much as I love what I do, I have to admit that I was hoping for a snow day last Friday in the wake of all the Nemo hype. No such luck. I awoke to emails from both of my early appointments saying game on.

First stop was...

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Ladies, Start Your Start-up Engines

(0) Comments | Posted November 14, 2012 | 10:13 AM

Another Veterans Day has come and gone but it's time for us to realize that honoring all veterans should be something we are doing on a regular basis. This includes the important role women in uniform play in protecting our country. Although it's a page missing from a lot of...

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Supporting an Urban Rebound in Detroit and Michigan

(0) Comments | Posted September 17, 2012 | 6:05 PM

An economic recovery is happening. Slowly, but it's happening. Depending on which side of the aisle you're on, there are a number of different theories about what can make this turn around move faster. Regardless, there is one area that everyone agrees on: women business owners and the need for...

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Having Babies and Doing Business: We Got This!

(1) Comments | Posted July 25, 2012 | 6:01 PM

Kimberlie Cerrone has a lot of start up experience, on the business front and otherwise. She's managed two IPOs and been involved at the C-Level with no less than eight start ups. More than twenty years ago, Kimberlie was in law school and raising two kids and her...

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Feeling Overwhelmed? A One Page Plan Puts You in Control

(0) Comments | Posted July 17, 2012 | 5:12 PM

What do women have who are leaders in their own life?

They have a plan. You can have a plan too.

2012-07-17-adelantevegas20123.jpgLast week in Las Vegas at the launch of The Adelante Movement, led by my...

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With a Little Help From Their Friends

(3) Comments | Posted July 17, 2012 | 4:16 PM

At some point, every entrepreneur comes to a crossroads, the point where she must take stock of her business and decide if they want to just be in business and remain in survival mode or if they want to take it to the next level. It's a daunting task --...

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An Open Invitation to Jack Welch

(0) Comments | Posted June 4, 2012 | 2:03 PM

Heard the one about Jack Welch at The Wall Street Journal "Women In the Economy" forum? In case you haven't, here's a brief recap: On May 2, 2012, former General Electric CEO Jack Welch (and his wife and writing partner, Suzy Welch) spoke to a gathering of women...

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On Being Your Own CEO

(1) Comments | Posted May 8, 2012 | 5:19 PM

Fantastic news from The Wall Street Journal: More companies are grooming more women for the CEO's chair. Finally!

According to a recent study they conducted with McKinsey & Company, nearly 73 percent of Fortune 500 companies have at least one female executive officer....

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Wise Words From Grandmother

(3) Comments | Posted May 4, 2012 | 4:41 PM

Recently, I had the great pleasure of meeting Jeff Unger, founder of the innovative legal services firm eMinutes, through a mutual friend, Romy Taormina, a Count Me In Awardee and the co-founder and "Nausea Relief Chief" of Psi Health Solutions. Jeff and I got to talking...

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What I Wish I Knew Then

(4) Comments | Posted April 24, 2012 | 1:10 PM

Back in 1992, I was approached by the Ms. Foundation for Women to help create a program to enhance girls' self-esteem. They'd seen a campaign I'd done a year earlier around the 10-year anniversary of the AIDS epidemic, where, among other things, we distributed 100,000 condoms on the...

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Women Changing The World

(1) Comments | Posted March 26, 2012 | 3:40 PM

We are smack in the middle of Women's History Month, and there's tons of happy news to report from the XX chromosome contingency! Now is a fantastic time to be a business leader, because so many of us are in positions where we can employ and help other women.

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Technology: What Do We Really Need?

(5) Comments | Posted February 24, 2012 | 1:39 PM

Ah, technology. I love it. It has made my life so much easier; I'd be lost without my Blackberry, which allows me to travel the world and stay connected at the same time. Sadly, my beloved little gadget is pretty much going the way of the pterodactyl, which means I'm...

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Affirmations for Women in 2012

(0) Comments | Posted December 19, 2011 | 5:00 PM

It's that time of year again, when we all vow to stop working like maniacs and start exercising more and be kinder to ourselves. And for a few weeks we might actually succeed. But then we all know what happens: We loosen the reins a bit and we start to...

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