Women's Leadership Conference

November 5 & 6, 2014

Verizon Wireless Center, Mankato



2014 Conference Recap & Speaker Materials

Conference Video RecapConference Closing PoemUnConference Notes
Lex Schroeder PowerPoint SlidesDr. Mia Malrennan PowerPoint SlidesDr. Mia Malrennan Handout
Dr. Annette Parker PowerPoint SlidesDr. Verna Price PowerPoint SlidesAnn Rosenquist Fee PowerPoint Slides
Kristin Maschka PowerPoint Slides  

Women's Leadership Conference Survey


Save the Date

November 4 & 5, 2015


2014 Conference & Speaker Agenda (subject to change)

Wednesday, November 5

4:00-5:30 p.m. Registration, Women's Business Expo & Social Hour

5:30-5:45 p.m. Conference Welcome

5:45-6:00 p.m. SHERO Recognition

6:00-6:30 p.m. Lex Schroeder, Difference as Strength, Complexity as Breakthrough: Why the World Needs More Authentic Women Leaders From Everywhere

Lex Schroeder is a writer/editor and speaker on mindful work, leadership, and systems change. She is a lead blogger and instructor for Take The Lead Women, an organization co-founded by Gloria Feldt and Amy Litzenberger dedicated to achieving leadership parity by 2025, and an editor at The Lean Enterprise Institute, the leading research organization on lean thinking and practice. At the core of her work is the question of how change happens.

Lex has given workshops on leadership during times of transition and authentic leadership at the Harvard School of Public Health, the Harvard Graduate School of Education, See Jane Do’s “Passion Into Action” Conference, and the Kauffman Foundation. She’s written on leadership, collaboration, and entrepreneurship for Boston.com, Color Magazine, BostInnovation, and Take The Lead, among other publications. Since 2010, she’s been a “host” with the Art of Hosting community of practice, starting and facilitating cross-sector conversations helping teams and groups navigate change and work with difference more effectively.

Prior to her work with The Lean Enterprise Institute, Lex studied with Deborah Frieze and Margaret Wheatley atThe Berkana Institute, an organization dedicated to creating systems that are interdependent, adaptive, and resilient. She spent four years building community in Boston as co-founder of a knowledge-sharing media startup, and she is a strategic advisor for the networking organization, Wonder Women of Boston. She holds a B.A. in Government from Smith College.

6:30-8:00 p.m. An UnConference: Provocative Conversations on Women & Leadership. Hosted by Lex Schroeder & Katie Boone, Sowelu Institute.


Thursday, November 6

7:30-8:15 a.m. Registration/Breakfast

8:15-8:30 a.m. Conference Opening & Welcome

8:30-9:30 a.m. Dr. Verna Price, Stand Up! Step Up! Speak Up!

Verna Cornelia Price, Ph.D., is the founder, president and principal consultant of J. Cameron & Associates, an organization committed to empowering and motivating people to realize and positively use their personal power. Dr. Verna is an author, organizational consultant, motivational speaker, executive coach, and educator. Her professional experience includes teaching pre-school through 6th grade and working as a program director, senior marketing manager, assistant dean of women, director of leadership programs and college professor.

In 2002, she created a Power of People Professional Development Process which equips businesses with tools and strategies to empower their employees to new levels of excellence through personal power and leadership. In 2005, Dr. Verna founded Girls in Action™, a leadership empowerment project for which she was honored in 2006 with an Ann Bancroft Leadership Award. In 2007, Dr. Verna and her husband co-founded The Power of People Leadership Institute™, a nonprofit organization committed to helping people overcome life’s obstacles while finding success in every area of life through personal power and leadership.

In 2008, Dr. Verna was awarded the WOW Achievement Award in the category of individual champion of women for her innovation in creating programs and processes which increase organizational effectiveness and individual performance of women in the workplace. This past year, Dr. Verna was awarded the MN Black MBA Association’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award in addition to Women Venture’s Pioneer Award for being a trailblazer and a visionary in Minnesota on behalf of women’s economic success.

She is the author of numerous research and educational articles and chapters, two best-selling books, The Power of People: Four Kinds of People Who Can Change Your Life (2003)and The Silent Cry; Dealing with Subtracters in Work and Life (2008); and her newest book,change your life in 30 days: a personal power change guide (2010). Dr. Verna is a Leadership Institute faculty member at St. Catherine University. She received her Ph.D. in Educational Policy and Administration from the University of Minnesota. She is married to Shane Martin Price and is blessed to be the mother of Justice Cameron, twins Cornelius Scott and Ktyal Liberty Amani, and Purpose Martinique.

9:30-10:00 a.m. Dream Weaver: Lisa Coons

Lisa Coons is a dreamer, a teacher, and a do-er. Passionate about social justice, environmentalism, and empowering others with knowledge and skills, Lisa has creatively woven these passions throughout her organizing work in our community and in her home. These passions merge in her professional role as the Co-Director of the SSND Center for Earth Spirituality and Rural Ministry. It is there that her desire to leave the planet better than she found it takes root in community work for sustainability, transitioning to a lower carbon future and re-skilling the community in the lost art of meeting some of our own needs. Equally at home teaching in a garden, a classroom, a community center, or a church sanctuary, Lisa brings to each setting a deep desire to connect people and their lives to something bigger than themselves.

Lisa is a Founding Member of Transition Mankato, a vibrant, grassroots movement that builds community resilience in the face of resource depletion, climate change and economic unpredictability. Working with others, she helped organize the area’s inaugural Sustainability Expo. In 2012, she and her family were highlighted in the book Making Home: Adapting Our Homes and Lives to Settle in Place by Sharon Astyk. Lisa is a Missouri transplant who landed in Mankato in the early 90s for the Women’s Studies Master’s Program at Minnesota State University, Mankato. In 1992, she and her spouse opened the Coffee Hag, a business intent on making a difference in the community by offering a smoke-free, organic coffee, vegetarian experience where everyone was welcome back when all of those things were still controversial. Lisa has found power in living an authentic life on the planet using a fairer share of the world’s resources. She is living the dream with her family in Mankato where she can often be found brewing beer, canning pickles or laughing on their salvage-design patio with friends – enjoying the beer and pickles, of course.

10:00-10:15 a.m. Break

10:15-11:00 a.m. Dr. Annette Parker, South Central College, Leading Through Organizational Change

South Central College President Dr. Annette Parker has 35 years of manufacturing industry and workforce education experience, including 11 years at General Motors, 17 years at Lansing Community College, and 6 years at the Kentucky Community & Technical College System's Automotive Manufacturing Technical Education Collaborative (AMTEC). Dr. Parker currently serves on President Obama's national Advanced Manufacturing Partnership (AMP) Steering Committee 2.0, co-chairs AMP's Employee-Driven Workforce Solutions work team, and holds board and leadership positions with the National Career Pathways Network, National Association of Manufacturers Manufacturing Institute, Manufacturing Skills Standards Council Leadership Council, and American Association of Community Colleges.



11:00-11:15 a.m. Break

11:15-12:15 p.m. Leading from the Margins Panel: Jessica Flatequal, Megan Hoogland & Amal Osman, facilitated by Barb Dorn

Jessica Flatequal serves as the director of Gender and Sexuality Programs at Minnesota State University, Mankato, where she oversees the Women’s Center, LGBT Center and Violence Awareness and Response Program.  She also is a founder and Executive Director of South Central MN Pride, Inc., a nonprofit in Mankato who works to promote visibility and pride for the LGBT and Allied community.  Additionally, she is an adjunct professor in Gender and Women’s Studies.
A Mankato native, her life’s work has to improve the climate for marginalized communities in Mankato and at Minnesota State University, Mankato.  She facilitates trainings and workshops for students, businesses, and organizations on LGBT issues, Women’s Issues, Sexual Assualt, Racism, Social Justice, White Privilege, and more.
Jessica graduated from Minnesota State University, Mankato with a B.F.A and M.A and has worked in various forms of community organizing for over 20 years.


Megan Hoogland has made a name for herself as one of the top female tattoo artists in her industry. Specializing in reproduction black and grey work, she has won numerous awards and been in countless publications around the world. Along with raising four kids and traveling, she also helps run a local non-profit, Midwest Art Catalyst, which supports local art and music programs.




Amal Osman moved to Mankato from Saudi Arabia in 2002. She works for the City of Mankato, as the Housing and Outreach Assistant and is the Community Outreach Liaison for the Department of Public Safety. Amal is a resource for residents within our diverse community, as well as city employees, and she bridges cultural gaps in our ever-changing population. Since its inception, Amal has been actively involved with the Tapestry Project, both as an interpreter and Core Team member, bringing a diverse perspective to the program. Last spring, Amal participated in the Tapestry Project - Leadership Series, discussing leadership topics with area business connectors. Amal's confidence has grown and through her life experiences she is finding her voice. Amal and her husband, Deeq Oman, live in Mankato with their three little girls.


12:15-1:00 p.m. Lunch/Intentional Conversation

1:00-1:15 p.m. Break/Energizer with Stephanie Howe

Stephanie Howe is the owner of Howe-to Fitness in Mankato, MN where she offers premier group fitness classes and small-group training with formats ranging from strength training to yoga to martial arts to high intensity interval training. Her studio features world class Les Mills brand classes taught by the area's best instructors. Based out of Auckland, New Zealand, Les Mills classes have a 20 year track record of setting the industry standard for group fitness classes.  Howe-to Fitness is dedicated to consistently providing safe, effective, and most importantly FUN workouts for all fitness levels. Stephanie uses her decade of experience as a certified personal trainer and her passion for group fitness to grow a business that provides not only great results but also a personal touch that you can't get anywhere else. 

1:15-2:15 p.m. Dr. Mia Mulrennan, The Optimist Gets Results: Faking the Cha-Cha with Two Left Feet

Dr. Mia Mulrennan is an organizational psychologist, and President and Chief Motivations Mapper at Rave-Worthy Consulting.  She advises clients in effectively applying tenets of psychology to achieve positive business results in areas of talent management, organizational development and service branding.  Mia specializes in working with companies in high-touch customer oriented industries such as travel, hospitality, retail and consumer products.  She has worked as an external consultant to many Fortune 500 corporations and has a passion for working with Gen X and women leaders.  She is also adjunct faculty and an advisory board member for graduate leadership programs at Saint Catherine University, University of St. Thomas and Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. in their Hospitality Business Management Program.




2:15-2:45 p.m. Dream Weaver: Ann Fee

Ann Rosenquist Fee is executive director of the Arts Center of Saint Peter. She is a past teaching artist at The Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis and a former adjunct instructor at Minnesota State University, Mankato where she was also publications director and chief of staff for University Advancement. Her fiction and nonfiction appear in collections by Cleis Press, Blueroad Press, The Missouri Review and Demos Health. She sings and writes songs with the acoustic duo The Frye, blogs at www.annrosenquistfee.com and tweets at @ARosenquistFee.




2:45-3:00 p.m. Break

3:00-3:15 p.m. YWCA Leadership Program Experience & Support the YWCA

3:15-4:15 p.m. Kristin Maschka, Remodeling Tools for Women Leaders

Kristin Maschka is the author of the LA Times Bestseller, This is Not How I Thought It Would Be: Remodeling Motherhood to Get the Lives We Want Today. She is an expert on the broad impact that subconscious stereotypes about mothers, fathers, women and leadership have on our personal lives, our workplaces and our public policies.

Through her firm, Maschka Enterprises, Kristin Maschka provides executive coaching to women and executive team coaching to large non-profits and public institutions. She has more than 20 years of experience in organization development and change leadership.

Kristin grew up in Mankato and is a proud graduate of Mankato East high school where she played on the 1987 State Championship Basketball team. She holds two degrees from the University of Chicago where she is also in the Hall of Fame for basketball. She and her husband live in Pasadena, California with their teenage daughter.


4:15-4:30 p.m. Final Connections/Conference Challenge

4:30-6:30 p.m. Happy Hour, Number 4

2014 YWCA Women's Leadership Conference Sponsors


Empowering Sponsors:



Presenter Sponsor:

Diana Gabriel, PCC



See Clearly,

Live Powerfully


Luncheon Sponsor:


Developing Sponsors:

Continuing Education &

Professional Development


Breakfast Sponsor:


Break Sponsor:


Media Sponsor:



2015 Sponsorship Opportunities

YWCA Leadership Conference Overview

YWCA Leadership Conference Sponsorship Forms

YWCA Leadership Conference In-Kind Donation Form