Staff Bios

Staff

Karen M. Prante, President & Founder

Meet Karen M. Prante, President & Founder - A Second Me Errand Service Karen worked in a Fortune 500 company for 21 years in various management and analytical positions before she decided to start her own business. In 2005, her second child was born with a rare genetic syndrome. About the same time, her mother needed additional help due to her deteriorating health. Karen found herself juggling a family with two children (one with special needs) and a mother who had moved into her home – along with her demanding full time job. She would often be at work, or sitting at her desk at home and wished she had personal errand service or a ‘A Second Me.’

Because of her personal experiences, Karen has become expert in a world most families aren’t even aware of. With her son’s special needs and her ailing mother, Karen is now intensely familiar with the medical world and all its complications. She managed an appointment schedule that included over 20 doctors, therapists, nurses, and many caregivers who worked at her home.

Karen navigated through the school systems’ programs for her son, learned about Medicaid waivers, and is firmly up to speed on Medicare and supplemental insurance for seniors given her mother’s situation. During those challenging years, she realized that when your focus turns to helping other people, the daily errands and to-do items just do not get done. It was when she realized she couldn’t do everything on her own that the concept of an errand running service developed, and A Second Me Errand Service, LLC was born.

Running an errand business keeps Karen plenty busy – but it’s for something she feels is so very important.  Helping those who need the support.  In addition to her “day” job, Karen is actively involved with her daughter’s activities, enjoys gardening and her new found interest in native plants and pollinators.  Karen is a new Virginia Master Naturalist and an IMA (Invasive Management Area) lead for a site near her home.

Karen lost her son in 2011, but she and her family still actively support the Share & Care Cockayne Syndrome Network. This organization supports families and children with the rare disorder Cockayne Syndrome that her son suffered from. She also created a new web-based menu planner for children and adults on feeding tubes – Nathan’s Chart.

Karen would love to hear from you at karen@asecondme.com.

 

Julie Propst, Office Staff and Errand Expert

Meet Julia - A Second Me Errand ServiceJulie has worked for Karen in her household for many years. She was the main caregiver for Karen’s mother before she passed away in 2010. Julie then stayed with the family and help take care of Karen’s children and the household.

Julie naturally became A Second Me’s first employee once Karen founded the errand company. Julie loves to help people, and is truly a natural-born caregiver. Julie more than proved herself in her relationship with Karen’s mother. A lovely woman, Karen’s mom was not that easy to get a long with and had gone through several caregivers trying to find the right one. Much to Karen’s delight, Julie and she hit it off from the beginning. Julie was patient, caring, and very attentive to her mother’s needs. Karen was so grateful for Julie’s help and is so glad to be able to share Julie with her customers.

Julie previously worked in an office setting and worked for Giant for 17 years. She has two grown daughters and three grandchildren. Julie enjoys cooking and gardening and vacationing with her fiance to visit her family.

 

Colleen Dearing, Errand Expert

In her former life, Colleen was a hairdresser for 16 years, happily connecting with each and every one of her customers that sat in her chair. Unfortunately, due to an allergy to the chemicals, Colleen left her position as a hairdresser. With her third child on the way and her husband’s demanding career, Colleen decided to stay at home to raise her children.

Staying at home with her children was a very rewarding experience, but as her youngest began school full time, she sought some more companionship and spoke to a friend who had been working at A Second Me. With her friend’s recommendation, Colleen joined the team at A Second Me and is an errand expert helping a variety of people from busy professionals to the elderly.

Colleen loves how meaningful the work is and how it still allows her to prioritize her family. She enjoys traveling and taking fun vacations with her family and hopes to see the world with her husband after their children are fully grown, responsible, and caring adults. As an errand expert, Colleen is a perfect fit at A Second Me and will always do her very best to benefit our customers!

 

Jeanine Seidou, Errand Expert

Jeanine Seidou brings a truly interesting set of skills and experience to A Second Me. Jeanine was born and raised in Togo, West Africa. She’s also known by her lovely African name Mlatibe. Jeanine speaks English and French along with other African languages -and, if that weren’t enough, she also studied German. In 1996, Jeanine moved to the US in search of better opportunities.

Jeanine has a degree from the University of Benin as a Bilingual Executive Assistant and puts her education to good use as a Programs Assistant for the Schools’ Superintendent Association in Alexandria, VA. Her goal is to get a degree in Child Psychology as she loves to work with children.

Jeanine has three children of her own – ages 7, 13, and 15.  She and her children love to read and spend a lot of their free time at the library. She also doesn’t mind a bit of shopping! Jeanine enjoys working with people and has known Karen for years so she’s a natural fit to help out at A Second Me.

 

Linda Fuller, Errand Expert and Business Operations Consultant
ASM - Linda Fuller

As a business advisor and errand expert at A Second Me, LLC, Linda keeps in touch with customers while consulting with Karen about business operations. Linda attends monthly networking meetings, and not only uses her knowledge and expertise gained from customer interaction and networking to improve the business dynamics of A Second Me, but she also uses her broad range of past experience to A Second Me’s advantage.

Prior to joining the Second Me team, Linda owned and ran Lake Anne Florist in Reston, Virginia for many years. She was an independent entrepreneur and handled her own marketing and advertising, insurance needs, financial analysis, and administrative tasks (all of which come in handy working at A Second Me today). After selling her business, Linda was an independent senior caregiver and also worked part time for a local care giving company. In 2015, a friend referred A Second Me, LLC to Linda and she came into contact with Karen. After speaking with Karen about the assets that she could provide to A Second Me, she joined the team, and the rest is history!

Karen and Linda make a great team above and beyond enhancing business processes at A Second Me! They’re both Virginia Master Naturalists and take any chance they can to enjoy the natural world. If you have a question about A Second Me or even about your garden or birds (our specialties), Linda and Karen may be your go-to contacts!

 

Mollis Cottingham, Errand Expert

ASM - Mollis Cottingham

Originally from Alabama, Mollis is another new member to join the team at A Second Me, and we’re sure glad she did! Mollis worked previously as a legal assistant, substitute teacher, and event planner. With a lot of research experience, experience planning events, and running after two school age boys, Mollis’ skills come in handy whenever a client needs some research done, help planning an event, or helping to stay organized.

Mollis learned about A Second Me by doing her own research, and she thought that working as an Errand Expert for A Second Me would be a great opportunity that fit her personality and her schedule. Aside from working with A Second Me customers, Mollis loves to read and go to new restaurants. She’s our go-to if we need any restaurant recommendations and we’re sure she would be more than happy to make any recommendations for A Second Me customers!

 

 

 Lili Borken-Hagen, Errand Expert

ASM - Lili Borken-Hagen

With an international background and a lot of work experience, Lili is A Second Me’s newest member to join the team, and she’s a great fit! Before joining A Second Me, Lili started working during her teenage years connecting with locals in small stores and libraries. Later, she worked for over 20 years in an insurance company and then moved on to become a lawyer in Chile. Connecting with people has always been a priority for Lili, which is why A Second Me is such a great fit for her since she is able to help other people lead happier lives.

When Lili and her family moved back to the United States, she wanted to do something that would keep her busy, but would also have flexible hours. After doing some research, she found A Second Me and decided to join the team. Her children are grown, and helping other people brings Lili joy throughout her workday.

Aside from working hard at A Second Me and connecting with our customers, Lili has a broad range of interests. From painting and gardening to going to concerts and dance classes with her husband, Lili keeps busy and continues to learn from different fields as often as she can. She’s also a great organizer, which helps keep customers and us on track!

 

 

Learn more about the errand services we offer.