Conference hopes to build new era of women leadersWanted: Women to fill leadership roles. Pay: Negotiable. Benefits: The opportunity to inspire/mentor other women and make a lasting impact on your community.
By: Amber Mensen, The Republican Eagle
Wanted: Women to fill leadership roles.
Benefits: The opportunity to inspire/mentor other women and make a lasting impact on your community.
Recruitment efforts are under way to find potential women leaders.
“Creating a legacy of leadership: A women’s conference,” a joint effort sponsored by the League of Women Voters-Red Wing, American Association of University Women and Community Education, is set for March 29. Preregistration due by Monday.
The event’s goal is to help prepare area women to take on leadership roles within their communities.
“The League has been really concerned about the lack of women we’ve had in office lately,” said Linda Thielbar, committee chairwoman for the conference.
“Recently we have had no women on the city council, school board and county commission, and there are still too few
on the school board and city council, and none on the county commission,” Thielbar said.
“We wanted to do something to start mentoring younger women to step up to the plate as leaders,” she said. “Hopefully, this conference will be the beginning of creating some interest and connecting women to mentors.”
Local and state leaders will be at the conference, giving women ideas on how they can help formulate public policy in the future. Presenters include keynote speaker Arvonne Fraser, author of “She’s No Lady: Politics, Family and International Feminism.”
Breakout sessions on leadership topics will be offered, including “Public Policy 101,” led by League of Women Voters-Minnesota co-presidents Vivian Jenkins and Judy Struthman; “How to Market Yourself,” led by Integreat business owner Kim Wiemer; “Behind the Scenes,” led by Minnesota Senate staffer Lindsey Wollschlager; and “Creating Opportunities to Lead,” led by United Way Executive Director Meg Walch and community activist Kai Coyle.
The event begins at 9 a.m. with networking and coffee and concludes at 1:30 p.m.; lunch will be provided. Featured speaker is Liz Johnson from The White House Project: Vote, Run, Lead.
The conference, which closes out Women’s History Month, also includes participants from a younger crowd.
Girls from Twin Bluff Middle School will present a skit, “History Idol,” which was adapted by Kelsey Lappegaard, Thielbar’s granddaughter.
A spinoff of “American Idol,” the skit will have five contestants who are important women in history: Jane Austen, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Gloria Steinem, Coretta Scott King and Bella Abzug.
Similar to the TV show, “History Idol” will have three judges. There will be two co-hosts, including a Vanna Black instead of Vanna White.
“We wanted there to be past, present and future” at the conference, Thielbar said of the spectrum of events.