Stacy DeMaria Speaks at Association of Women in Ministry International Conference in Peabody – Everett Independent
When Rev Mimi Daniel of the North Shore Evangelical Missionary Church needed a guest speaker for an international conference on empowering women, well-known spiritual director Stacy DeMaria called for the honor.
DeMaria, wife of Everett Mayor Carlo DeMaria, took the opportunity to deliver a powerful and inspiring address at the Association of Women In Ministry conference at the Peabody Marriott Hotel.
DeMaria was a loyal and supportive partner to the Mayor in her role as First Lady of Everett. She was a very visible presence at citywide events, most recently at the Walk For Ersilia 5K last Saturday, when members of Ersilia Cataldo Matarazzo’s family thanked the DeMarias for their tremendous support of the fundraiser.
In an interview this week, Stacy DeMaria reflected on some of the accomplishments of the mayor’s office and her role as an advisor to her husband in running the city.
“A lot of my goals were focused on improving community aesthetics,” DeMaria said. “I have a feeling that when you improve your surroundings, people feel better and feel a little more uplifted. I’m also very proud of the health and wellness center because exercise is so good for mental health, the psychological part of wellbeing and being healthy. “
Everett now has one of the best parking systems in the area, with new and renovated recreational areas across the city. Everett’s traffic islands are beautifully landscaped and manicured.
“It was an amazing change to see and I owe a great team led by the Mayor – DPW, Facility Maintenance – everyone is on the same page and we really have been able to achieve a lot,” said DeMaria, adding that she, as she often walks around town, can oversee what aesthetic improvements need to be made in Everett.
DeMaria said she sees herself as an administrative partner willing to help her husband with local affairs and as an envoy for various organizations.
“I would say we are a good team,” said DeMaria. “He’s definitely the visionary. I want to support him because he loves the city so much and is a visionary that this combination has produced amazing results for Everett. “
DeMaria first met her future husband Carlo at his 21st birthday party in Prime Time, Revere. “It was a great night. It happened to be Ash Wednesday and I still had the ashes on my forehead, which he thought was pretty cool,” recalls Stacy. “He was 21 and I was 20, and I feel like we’ve been since then We got married when he was 24 and I was 23 and we’re going to be celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary this March. “
The DeMarias have three children, Carlo, 22, a senior at Stonehill College, Caroline, 20), a junior at Suffolk University, and Alexandria, 12, a seventh grade student at Lafayette School.
Stacy was very busy during the election campaign and supported her husband in his bid for re-election as mayor. “It’s healthy to have competition and we never took this place for granted,” she said. “I’ve always felt that this seat belongs to the people, and people judge the work you do, whether they want you to stay or not. And I’ve always been happy to be here. “
The following is the text of Stacy DeMaria’s remarks at the AWMI conference:
Good evening. Thank you for the warm introduction.
It is a privilege to be here with all of you tonight to celebrate the Association of Women in Ministry 2021 International Conference. Thank you to Reverend Myreille Daniels, North Shore Evangelical Missionary Church, for inviting me to join and participate in today’s program. What an honour.
For years women have been suppressed, their voices have fallen silent, their ideas overlooked. Fortunately times have changed. It is time to stand up and empower all women.
When we empower women, we use our voices to implement change, do our part, and stand up for what’s right. That’s how we make a difference.
As women, we use our voices to spread positivity, an essential attribute in today’s world. It is our job as women to be united, and I recommend any woman who has risen above the status quo and made a positive impact on her community and those around her.
Female ministerial leaders play an essential role as positive and courageous leaders in a community. Not only do they spread the word of God, they also show how to be part of God’s family. Look around the room, look at all of these powerful, smart, beautiful women. They are role models. They are mothers, sisters, daughters, but above all they are children of God.
In the past, young women were not encouraged to dream of a bold and fascinating career. A career in science, a career in politics, or even a career in business. In today’s world women don’t have to choose between mother and job. That is progress.
Today I stand before you as a woman, a woman with a career and a woman with a family. I often encourage my daughters never to settle down, dream big, and always exceed expectations because, as former first lady Michelle Obama once said, “There are no limits to what we can achieve as women.”
As many of you know, my husband is Mayor of Everett City, and as his wife, I walk next to him, not behind him. We are really equal.
I firmly believe in the saying “women help women”. It is imperative that we support, respect and uplift one another. I urge you all to encourage the women in your life anew every day. We need to celebrate each other’s accomplishments and offer support in difficult times. That empowers women.
On behalf of the City of Everett, thank you again for inviting me to speak this evening. I am really humble and honored to be here. As was shown tonight, when women of all origins, when united, can change the world for today, tomorrow and for the future.
I close with a quote from former Supreme Court judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg: “Women belong wherever decisions are made.”
Thank you and god bless!