2017 Women & Business Conference Agenda2017-11-08T11:31:58+00:00

2017 Women & Business Conference Agenda

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

At the age of 14, Elizabeth Smart was abducted at knifepoint from her family home and held captive for nine long months. Her abduction became one of the most followed cases of child abduction of our time. She will share her incredible story about perseverance in the face of unimaginable adversity, as well as discuss the importance and process of recovery, and how to not allow your past to dictate your future. Smart knows that there is nothing more important than having hope in a difficult situation. Having lived through an extreme circumstance as a young teenager, she will give 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 five different sessions)

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

Are you tired of feeling frustrated by 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 career you want. Learn how to enhance your leadership skills, the necessary lifestyle habits to achieve your goals, and what’s necessary for a complete career change.

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

Learning by example is your key to success in this session. Find out how brave and bold actions helped our speaker achieve greatness throughout her entire career. In addition, learn how to improve your networking skills and ultimately navigate your future.

Bold Planning for Brave Crisis Management
Speaker: Heidi Ruster, CEO, American Red Cross, Utah and Nevada Region

The ability to respond and lead during challenging times takes effective preparedness, relationship building and empowering the right teams and individuals. Strong leadership has been very apparent in the many disasters that have recently impacted communities locally, nationally and internationally. These disasters include home fires in Utah, wildfires in California, the Las Vegas shooting, the earthquake in Mexico and the flooding in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

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

Everyone has heard the colloquialism “be the change you wish to see in the world.” But how does one lead an organization to embody this principal from the inside-out? In this session, learn how positive relationships and mentorships will start you on the 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 five 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. This session 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

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.

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
Panelists: Theresa Foxley, CEO, EDCUtah; Alison Lutjemeier, Head of Global Customer Success Programs, Adobe

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 session, the panel 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.

Stepping Into the Unknown With Conviction
Speaker: Lori Feld Oakley, Student Experience Marketing, University of Utah

Change can be hard. A career change can be so agonizing that many people will never do it. And yet many wonder, even after years of pursuing a profession, “what should I be when I grow up?” If you’ve ever had this internal debate, discover how to simplify your decision and find the courage to do something new.

BElive in YOUrself
Speaker: Katie Holland, Founder, Illuminate

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