Conference Agenda

What you can look forward to at the 2023 Women in Leadership Conference

Continental Breakfast, Registration
The Yin and Yang of Hard Times: How Understanding the Interplay of Goals and Threats Helps Women Succeed
Kelly Goldsmith
Dr. Kelly Goldsmith’s talk, “The Yin and Yang of Hard Times How Understanding the Interplay of Goals and Threats Helps Women Succeed,” offers a unique perspective on how to reinterpret business insights during times of change. Drawing on her research, which includes the study of scarcity theory, Dr. Goldsmith explores how past experiences and assumptions can impact our understanding of current and future business challenges. Her talk offers practical advice on how to leverage this understanding to adapt and thrive in times of transition. Business owners, entrepreneurs, and anyone interested in gaining a deeper understanding of the business environment in times of change and how scarcity theory plays a role will benefit from this thought-provoking and informative talk.


Moving Time-Tested Brands Across Generational Chasms
Michaela Marx Wheatley, Content Strategist

If you aren’t moving forward, you are moving backward.

No matter if you lead a multi-generational business, are the steward of a legacy product, or have to stay relevant for a new generation of consumers, moving brands forward requires friction. And that’s not always comfortable. Approaching branding and marketing this way—really business as a whole—requires guts and vision. It means looking at who your customers are or should be. Insights about current customers, combined data, and demographics lead you to where you’ll find and attract your future customers. And it’s where you own your space, compete less, sell more, and amplify profitability.

Cannon Ball: Find what scares you the most, jump in with confidence, and make waves.
Rachel Cannon, Co-CEO Prairie Surf Media, actress, writer, producer
As women, we sometimes sit back and accept that we can’t do something because we haven’t. I want to challenge you to change that narrative in your head by simply adding the word “YET” to the end. It changes everything. You get three voices in your head that will either cheer you on or tear you down. Choose wisely. Know when to lean in, when to pivot, when to have boundaries, and when to learn. All are critical for your growth.
How my Vision, Education and Experience Evolved into Discovering Purpose on My Journey to Utopia
Sharina Perry

This is an inspiring and empowering talk by the founder of Utopia Plastix, an entrepreneur on a mission to make a difference. Hear the story of how this dynamic and visionary leader founded her company and her commitment to providing the best plant-based products as an alternative to single-use plastics. Discover the challenges, obstacles and opportunities she encountered along the way and learn about the innovative and sustainable products and services that Utopia Plastix offers. Whether you are an entrepreneur, a sustainability advocate or just looking for ways to make a positive impact, this talk is not to be missed. Be inspired and learn how you can make a difference in your own community and beyond.

Lunch and Networking

Speak Like the Leader You Are
Rena Cook, author, adjunct professor and professional voice coach

Rena Cook brings years of training actors and a Master’s Degree in Voice to professional women at all levels with a clear process to open and free the voice in order to speak personal truth in all situations. Rena shares strategies that work on our body’s muscle memory to actually learn to speak in a new and more effective ways.

Panel Discussion “Thriving in a Uniquely Challenging Business Environment” Cheryl Borelli, Senior Vice President, BancFirst
Dr. Mautra Staley Jones, President, OCCC
Shannon Foster, Chief Human Relations Officer, Robinson Park
Sherri Lance, Capital Gaming Group
Donna Miller (moderator)

The panel discussion focuses on the strategies and experiences of successful women leaders from diverse industries and backgrounds. The panelists will share their insights on navigating the complex and rapidly changing business landscape, and offer practical advice on how to achieve success in the face of uncertainty, competition, and other challenges. This session promises to be an informative and empowering experience for business owners, entrepreneurs, and anyone interested in learning from inspiring women leaders who have adapted to the unique challenges and rapidly evolving business environment and the future of work.


FINDING THE LEADER IN YOU: How My Life Experiences Will Help You Develop Courage That Equals Character.
Gretchen Carlson, Journalist, author, empowerment advocate

Gretchen Carlson believes the power within you is your strongest resource, and only you can navigate this.  In her talk, FINDING THE LEADER IN YOU, Gretchen will share her life experiences to help guide your audience to develop courage to unlock the power to be the best leader by getting involved with what deeply matters to them.   Throughout her candid conversation, Gretchen will give your audience an understanding of the underlying leadership traits, actions, support structures and more that helped her achieve positive change instead of accepting the status quo.

Melissa Cory

Thank You’s and Final Announcements

Meet & Greet, photo opportunity and reception

Get together with other attendees and take photos with staff and attending speakers.