Mary is an articulate and extremely thoughtful leader. She worked to consider all sides of any question or action that she needed to take as NAPO President. She helped the Board set strategic directions and then worked with individual Directors and our association staff to stay on target. 

Mary is an excellent representative of NAPO and as President, was a speaker at numerous conferences for many of NAPO’s affiliate associations as well as many NAPO chapters across the U.S. Mary quickly stepped in as the key note speaker to JALO, Japan’s national professional organizing association conference when requested. 

Mary is steeped in Robert’s Rules and very capably can run a Board meeting of professionals, often with differing opinions, and help the Board reach a decision that can be supported by all Board members. I admire her for her calmness, wisdom and the complete commitment that she brought to the office of President. Mary’s actions were always taken with NAPO’s good and its future in mind. 

Sandy Stelter, JD, CPO, CPES

Certified Professional Organizer

Mary is a classic good sport. She knows how to step in, step aside and step up. Many people with her level of competence are competitive and bossy. Mary is not. I find her interested in the “greater good.” One thing you should know about Mary is that she is a killer organizer which means, among other things, every contingency, option and detail will be thoroughly thought of. You might have to remind her to make a little room for wonder, ambivalence or confusion.

Judith Kolberg

Organizing Industry Thought Leader

I have had the privilege to listen to Mary several times in different venues, talking on different topics. Each time she impressed me with her ability to draw the audience in, to engage our imagination and help us relate to the topic, as well as retain the key message. She has the knack for making facts and numbers into a story I can relate to and take action on. I highly recommend her as a speaker and presenter. (and yes, I’m posting this in two places because it applies to both settings) 

Shawndra Holmberg, CPO-CD

Primary Instigator of Productivity & Organization

Mary truly does “partner with” her clients. Every time I meet with her she is totally focused and invested in me and my business. From discussing the highest concepts to physically doing the most menial tasks, she is there with me offering focus, wisdom, and clarity. She is giving me tools to successfully organize my home and business, helping me get over whatever hurdles are in my way to get things done. Now our meetings together help sustain my new skills so they become my natural habit.

I recommend Mary to anyone who needs a hand clarifying priorities, uncluttering space, and organizing for the long-term. Her work with me has been invaluable both personally and professionally.

Nancy Jonker, PhD

Success Strategist

I feel incredibly fortunate to have gotten to know and work with Mary. She brilliantly led NAPO, the nation’s “Organizing Authority” through some amazing innovative changes. She did so with style, flair, and professionalism. Mary not only has the ability to “read the tea leaves,” but the critical skills necessary to build a team, consensus, and motivation to execute a plan to capitalize on emerging trends. 

Throughout her tenure, I’ve seen a multitude of improvements from enhanced communication, education and coordination throughout the industry. Mary is the consummate connector. I can literally point to dozens of examples where Mary was the catalyst that resulted in new friendships, professional relationships, guest appearances, and career broadening opportunities for me and my business. She’s THAT good!

It’s rare to find someone that so completely understands the complex workings of a national-level organization, is willing to roll up her sleeves to make it better, and simultaneously serve as the “face” of an industry. Mary pulls that off seemingly effortlessly. 

If you’re looking for someone to advise or lead your organization to the next level and beyond, look no further than Mary!

Vanessa Hayes, MHR, CPO

Certified Professional Organizer

 In her closing speech as President at the 2015 Annual Conference of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO), Mary Dykstra-Novess, encouraged and inspired the gathering of nearly 600 attendees to do the following:

“Never step back from their potential. Be consistent, committed, courageous. And give to get “

Mary led by example in demonstrating these characteristics throughout her many years of service to NAPO, and in particular during her 2 years as the NAPO President.

I had the honor of serving on the NAPO Board of Directors with Mary and was continually impressed with her consistent focus on improving the quality of engagement and involvement for our Volunteers. 

Mary spearheaded the successful launch of collaborative resources for Volunteer Leaders, that were key in helping to break down the silos between volunteer committees.

Her commitment to the development of her fellow board members, led to assignments and projects that matched, stretched and challenged the skills of each individual in the ways they need to grow.

Courageously, during adverse times, including the loss of our previous president during the first few months of her term, Mary focused on making the decisions and changes that positioned our association for growth.

Mary did not step back from her potential and stepped up to lead our association with an unwavering dedication–giving of her time and energy continuously.

I for one–am better for service and leadership and recommend her with confidence!

Nicole Chamblin

Productivity Coach & Corporate Trainer