2017 Women & Business Conference Agenda

Overcoming Adversity: The Elizabeth Smart Story
Speaker: Elizabeth Smart, Founder, Elizabeth Smart Foundation

The abduction of Elizabeth Smart was one of the most followed child abduction cases of our time. At the age of 14, Elizabeth was awakened hours after falling asleep in her family’s home to a knife held roughly against her throat. She was taken from her home and family and held captive for nine long months. In her captivating message, Elizabeth shares her incredible story of perseverance in the face of unimaginable adversity. She also discusses topics such as overcoming extreme adversity, the importance and process of recovery, and not allowing your past to dictate your life’s future. Elizabeth knows that there is nothing more important than having hope in a difficult situation. Having lived through an extreme circumstance as a young teenager, Elizabeth gives great insight and hope to all.

The Formidable Female: Find Your Power Through Conversational Intelligence®
Speaker: Lyn Christian, Founder & Coach, SoulSalt, Inc.

Research states nine out of ten conversations miss the mark and that misaligned communication costs businesses on average of $26,041 per knowledge worker. One of the top five business trends, C-IQ (Conversational Intelligence®) is a means to manage such costs. Lyn Christian, C-IQ Enhanced Skills Practitioner and Master Certified Coach, will deliver knowledge and exercises in this C-IQ presentation.

Morning Breakout Sessions
(Choose from 4 different sessions)

Brave & Bold Career Paths
Speaker: Jacquelyn Mitchell, Founder & CEO, Professionally Chic & Fit

Are you tired of feeling frustrated working a job without any clear path for progression? In this session, identify personal values and goals, build confidence, and create a plan to go after the ideal career position you want. Learn how to enhance your leadership skills, and find out what’s necessary for a complete change in your career. Also learn how to build great habits for a healthier mind and body while striving for that ideal position.

Bold Marketing That Gets You Noticed
Speaker: Nineveh Madsen, Founder & CEO, HER Magazine

Sales are integral to any organizations success. Marketing, simply defined as “I’ll give you X for Y,” is at the core of sales. Lead generation, one of the main purposes of marketing, is the lifeblood of all businesses. Experts say that diversifying a content arsenal is key for branding. In this session we will dive into the basics of attracting customers through simple techniques anyone can do with a minimal budget.

I am the Pilot of my Own Career
Speaker: Laura Bogusch, General Manager of Boeing Salt Lake, The Boeing Company

Laura Bogusch, the General Manager of Boeing Salt Lake, will share how her brave and bold actions have helped her throughout her career at The Boeing Company. She will also share advice for improving networking skills that can help navigate you to your future.

Leading the Change You Want to See in the World
Speaker: Adrienne Andrews, Chief Diversity Officer, Weber State University

We all know that we need to “be the change we want to see in the world.” But how does one lead organizations that embody this principal from the inside-out? In this session, learn how positive relationships and mentorship will start us on that path to positive change.

Help us recognize those making a difference in our local community.

The Award Leadership Recipient is chosen based on the following criteria:

  • The individual has achieved the highest degree of professional excellence.
  • The individual has assisted women in reaching their potential.
  • The Individual’s body of work has had a national or global impact


Dr. Deneece Huftalin was named the eighth president of Salt Lake Community College in September 2014. Prior to her current role, Huftalin served as Salt Lake Community College’s Interim President, Vice President of Student Services, Dean of Students, and Director of Academic and Career Advising. In her tenure as president, Huftalin has launched a College-wide strategic planning cycle that has produced a new vision, mission, values, and strategic goals for the College. She is also leading efforts to strengthen completion rates, transfer pathways, workforce responsiveness, and equity in student access and completion.

Huftalin also has taught in the Education, Leadership, and Policy program at the University of Utah and serves on a number of community boards and committees including the Salt Lake Chamber, Governor’s Education Excellence Commission, EDCUtah, Envision Utah, and Utah Campus Compact. Nationally, Dr. Huftalin serves as a Commissioner and Executive Committee member for the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU), a trustee for LeaderShape, and a member CEO for RC-2020, Inc.

In addition to the ATHENA Award, six other women will receive the Pathfinder Award. The Pathfinder Award is given to community leaders who “create new paths” and promote the development and recognition of women in business.

2017 Pathfinders

  • Amanda Covington, SVP Communications & Government Relations, Vista Outdoor
  • Mary Crafts-Homer, CEO/Owner, Culinary Crafts
  • Lavanya Mahate, Owner, Saffron Valley East India Cafe
  • Heidi Prokop, SVP & Communications Manager, Zions Bank
  • Maureen Riley, Retired Executive Director, Salt Lake City International Airport
  • Vicki Varela, Managing Director, Utah Office of Tourism, Film and Global Branding

Afternoon Breakout Sessions
(Choose from 4 different sessions)

How to Lead When you are not the CEO
Speaker: Linda Wardell, General Manager, City Creek Center

How can women (and men) be impactful leaders in organizations at any level? Many leadership gurus focus on leaders at the executive level. This leaves those striving to reach the executive level and get more involved to the wayside. In this session, Linda Wardell, general manager of City Creek Center, focuses on 10 actionable items and ways to strive for leadership at any level of your career.

Creating Influence by Design, Not Default
Speaker: Sydne Jacques, CSP, PE, CEO, Jacques & Associates

Sydne will inspire you to create a new and improved design for both your personal brand and your influence strategy. Learn how to properly identify your audience, strategize the message and teach your audience how to think. Also discover new ways to sharpen your personal brand and learn how to positively influence your team. You will be amazed at how simple, yet powerful these tools are. Join us for a high-energy, life-changing workshop– all while snacking on home-baked chocolate chip cookies.

The Magic Zone: Turning Stress into an Asset
Speaker: Vikki Carrel, Founder & President, Vikki Carrel & Company

Is what Americans value most inherently stressful? Occupational stress is an extremely difficult construct to define, but we know it affects performance, productivity and work/life balance. Learn trainable skills to eliminate behavior that causes stress, and reverse the stress cycle which leads to increased motivation.
Recharge, don’t endure!

Utah Women and the Wage Gap
Moderator: Melanie Vartabedian, Partner, Ballard Spahr LLP

Women working full time lose billions of dollars each year due the gender wage gap. In Utah, women are paid 71 cents for every dollar paid to men, representing one of the largest wage gaps in the nation. During this panel discussion, Melanie and the panelists will discuss how this annual loss of billions of dollars is affecting economic development in Utah, including the ability to attract businesses and a talented workforce.

BElive in YOUrself
Speaker: Katie Holland, Founder, Illuminate

This lively presentation and interactive round table discussion will help pull together information learned throughout the conference and disseminate it in a way that is meaningful. Katie Holland knows a thing or two about how to distill and share information. How can you be you, AND be Brave and Bold? There is an age-old adage which says we are all far more alike than we are different. Leave the conference inspired with an internal feeling of “Woman Warrior” and draw together with those around you in service and camaraderie.

Conference Presenting Sponsors

ATHENA Awards Luncheon Presenting Sponsor