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06/30

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What Women Want Today: Sam's Club and Working Mother Teamed Up to Ask Moms 'What's On Your Mind?'

BENTONVILLE, Ark., June 29 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Working Mother magazine and Sam’s Club teamed up to honor 30 “Working Mothers of the Year” who adeptly balance career, motherhood and self-development with grace and determination. This extraordinary group of women, made up of high powered executives, IT professionals, a scientist, a banker and a psychologist, were celebrated at Working Mother’s 30th Birthday celebration in New York City. The event featured a roundtable discussion led by a notable panel of working moms and industry leaders on issues that matter most to America’s moms who juggle both family and career.

“Working Mother magazine was thrilled to partner with Sam’s Club to bring these incredible women together to discuss critical issues, such as access to affordable healthcare, the economy and how technology moves business forward,” said Carol Evans, President, Working Mother Media. “It’s about empowering each other to thrive even in times of economic duress.”

Sam’s Club understands that working moms lead complex lives, as family dynamics shift and unexpected challenges arise. By listening directly to America’s time-stretched moms, Sam’s Club can better serve their needs and deliver solutions that will help enrich their lives and their families’ lives.

“Moms these days are inundated with tips, most of which require additional time demands on top of their already busy schedules,” says Jill Turner-Mitchael, senior vice president, Sam’s Club. “It was great to learn from each other at the Working Mother event and I believe all of the participants came away with an expanded perspective. At Sam’s Club, our focus is on providing our members with solutions that simplify their lives and needs versus complicating matters, whether they are addressing what’s for dinner to auto buying, healthcare or family entertainment.”

Following are the results elicited from the roundtable.

Economic Fears and Opportunities
While many working moms have felt the pains of the current economic downturn, they remain positive that their personal difficulties will improve.

“From the pressure of layoffs and resource constraints to changes in behaviors at home, there is no doubt that we feel stressed,” said Susan Sobbott, president, American Express OPEN. "As women, we need to use these trying times as a unique opportunity to have a strong voice grounded in numbers, creativity, and a higher mission.”

The panelists also recognize that these tough economic times serve as an opportunity to teach children about financial responsibility and awareness. They suggested that parental financial guidance might be one way to reverse the trend of debt and paltry savings. Educating children to become savvier shoppers and planners might prevent us from passing on the current financial crisis to the next generation.

“We teach our kids how to read, ride a bicycle and unload a dishwasher, yet we avoid one of the most important life lessons -- how to manage money,” adds Sobbott. “Serving as positive, money-savvy role models and teaching them the basics early on will help our kids develop responsible spending habits for a brighter future.”

Today’s Technology & its Impact
Modern technology offers more access and enhanced mobility for working moms and their families, giving them the flexibility to stay connected. And, some women are embracing technology to launch new careers leveraging their “mommy experiences.” As mommy bloggers are one of the most active participants in the social media environment, these women have proven their ability to reinvent themselves as a brand, using their at-home experiences as a competitive advantage.

“The lines are blurring specific to the expansion of technology,” commented Inhi Cho Suh, VP, IBM Data Server Marketing. “Tools like social media sites and the internet allow you to create an electronic footprint for yourself and your family. A great example is the growing power of blogs, which allow you to share your family news with friends and relatives or provide seasoned or expert tips and ideas with the greater community.”

The panel also spoke about the every-day advantages to being connected online. Shopping, travel and recipes are all just a click away. Samsclub.com and workingmother.com respectively offer the latest tips and tools for busy moms, from parenting advice and solutions for combating work/life balance stress to recipes and Click-n-Pull shopping conveniences. With Sam’s Club Click ‘n’ Pull service, a free, convenient personal-shopping option, Members can shop for their merchandise from the convenience of their computer and it’s ready for pick up when they arrive.

Healthcare Shifts and Needs
Mom’s mindset has shifted from crisis to prevention in regards to health issues. Challenges in this category revolve around the economy, as more and more families become uninsured or struggle to pay their healthcare bills even with insurance. When it comes to healthcare, mom’s focus and commitment extends beyond her family to the community.

“We need to rally lawmakers to push for change in community and healthcare organizations in regards to communications, offerings and support,” advised Mary Ranee Leder, attending physician, Child Advocacy Center at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. “The more sick you become, the more this impacts your overall lifestyle and community.”

Working moms who are small business owners say they’re looking for alternate providers to ensure their employees and families are well taken care of without fail. Sam’s Club offers its small business Members affordable insurance options, in addition to a wide range of other cost-effective services, including printing, shipping and office supplies.

Additionally, Sam’s Club provides everyday consumers with significant pharmacy savings programs, including $4 prescriptions for a 30-day supply of most generic drugs. Consumers do not have to be Members to have their prescriptions filled.

For the full editorial feature on Working Mother’s “Working Mothers of the Year,” visit workingmother.com and visit samsclub.com, click on Mom's Corner for more insightful tips.

About Sam’s Club
Sam’s Club is a division of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT). The first Sam’s Club opened its doors in Midwest City, Okla., in 1983. Today, Sam’s Club serves more than 47 million U.S. Members with locations nationwide and in Brazil, China, Mexico and Puerto Rico. Sam’s Club offers exceptional values on merchandise and services for business owners and consumers. Online merchandise and Club information is available at samsclub.com.

About Working Mother Media
Celebrating 30 years, Working Mother magazine reaches 2 million readers and is the only national magazine for career-committed mothers; and workingmother.com (www.workingmother.com) brings to the web a broad range of insight and solutions served to working mothers every day. Working Mother’s 24-year signature research initiative, Working Mother 100 Best Companies, is the most important benchmark for work/life practices in corporate America. With offices in New York and Washington, D.C., Working Mother Media, a subsidiary of Bonnier Corp. (www.bonniercorp.com), includes the National Association for Female Executives (NAFE) (http://www.nafe.com), Diversity Best Practices (http://www.diversitybestpractices.com), the WorkLife Congress, and the Multicultural Women’s Conference and Town Halls. Working Mother Media’s mission is to champion cultural change.