Keynotes & Speakers | NAWBO


Jenn Lim

CEO & Chief Happiness Officer of Delivering Happiness
Culture Book Creator and Consultant at


Jenn Lim is the CEO and CHO (Chief Happiness Officer) of Delivering Happiness (DH), a company she and Tony Hsieh (CEO of co-founded to inspire science-based happiness, passion and purpose at work, at home and in everyday life.

Jenn has been a consultant with Zappos from its start-up days in 2003 to the $2-billion business it is today. She created the Zappos Culture Book, an embodiment of how companies can use happiness as a business model to increase productivity and profitability.

Jenn’s experience with Zappos, combined with her development of scientific frameworks for workplace happiness, created the evidence that happier employees = happier customers = successful companies (and meaningful lives).

Jenn has traveled to more than 30 countries to speak on this equation and most importantly, share the practical ways of how this equation works.

Upon the discovery that every organization can have similar results, DH evolved into the culture coach-sulting company it is help businesses, hospitals and governments actualize their own sustainable culture for positive ROI.

Today, Jenn is dedicated to growing DH to inspire people, companies and communities to change their world, so together, we can change the world.

SABA Keynote

Jenn Dubai Gov't Summit



Dr. Tererai TrentDr. Tererai Trent

Scholar, Humanitarian, Motivational Speaker,
Educator, Author & Founder

Tererai Trent International

Growing up in Zimbabwe, Tererai did not have the opportunity to go to school. Undeterred, she still dreamed of an education and determinedly taught herself to read and write from her brother’s schoolbooks. Despite being married young and having three children by the time she was 18, she never lost sight of her dreams. She wrote down her dreams of going to America for higher education, sealed them in a tin can and buried them under a rock, ultimately redesigning the blueprint of her life. A two-time guest on The Oprah Winfrey Show, Tererai was named by Oprah as her “All-Time Favorite Guest.” She founded Tererai Trent International with the firm belief that education is the pathway out of poverty and a desire to give back to her community. And her mission is being realized: 11 schools are being built in Zimbabwe and education has been improved for more than 5,000 children so far. The Girl Who Buried Her Dreams in a Can, her latest book, was published in 2015.


Kim Reynolds

Lieutenant Governor of Iowa


Kim, an Iowa native, serves as Iowa’s 45th Lieutenant Governor. She has a passion for and works tirelessly to promote STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) programs for students, especially the underrepresented and underserved. She co-chairs the Governor’s STEM Advisory Council in Iowa and is also chairing the development and implementation of the statewide Energy Plan. Economic development and promoting Iowa trade are key issues for Kim. Since 2011, she has helped attract more than $12 billion in private investment to the state. She has also led trade missions to Europe, South America, Southeast Asia and Israel to promote sales of Iowa exports. On the national front, she currently serves as the Past Chair of the National Lieutenant Governors Association.

Monday, September 19, 12:45-2:45 pm • Lunch General Session: Public Policy–Pathways to Public Service keynote panel

Kirstin Simonson

Senator Charleta B. Tavares

15th Senate District (D-Columbus)


A committed public servant who has served as State Senator since 2011, Charleta was re-elected and sworn in on January 5, 2015, as State Senator for the 15th District and Assistant Democratic Leader in the Ohio Senate. She currently serves as the Senate ranking member on both the Ways and Means and the Health and Human Services Committees. In addition, she serves as a member of the Finance, Finance Subcommittee on Corrections, Joint Medicaid Oversight Committee and Joint Committee on Agency Rules and Review, and serves as Co-Chair of the Ohio Constitutional Modernization Commission.

Monday, September 19, 12:45-2:45 pm • Lunch General Session: Public Policy–Pathways to Public Service keynote panel


Jennette Bradley

First Africa American Woman in U.S. to be Elected Lieutenant Governor
State of Ohio


Jennette has successfully blended her expertise in the public and private sectors to serve the citizens of Ohio. She has dedicated 25 years of her career to public service. Jennette made history when she became the first African-American woman in the nation to be elected a Lieutenant Governor. As Lieutenant Governor of Ohio, she worked closely with Ohio’s Small Business Advisory Council. She created a Small Business Ombudsman Program to strengthen the relationship between small businesses and the government. 

Monday Keynote panelist for the Pathways to Public Service discussion 



Mary Albright

Business Strategist


Mary has a super power: inventive problem solving. A former engineer and multi-passionate entrepreneur, she brings unconventional solutions to conventional problems. As one of less than 30 Fascinate Certified Advisors worldwide, she provides individual coaching for professionals and entrepreneurs and team engagement training for corporate, organizational and business teams using the Fascination Advantage System. Mary also serves on the Board of Directors for NAWBO-Minnesota. 

Erin Andrew

U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership


As the U.S. Small Business Administration’s assistant administrator for women’s business ownership, Erin is the director of the SBA’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership. She oversees the agency’s efforts to promote the growth of women-owned businesses through advocacy and programs that provide business training and counseling, access to credit and capital and multiple business and networking opportunities. Erin manages a nationwide network of women’s business centers that provide training, counseling and mentoring to hundreds of thousands of entrepreneurs in every state and two U.S. territories. 

Monday, September 19, 10:30 am: Panelist for the Public Policy breakout session


Priscilla ArchangelPriscilla Archangel, Ph.D.

Leadership Consultant, Executive Coach, Author, Speaker and Teacher
Archangel and Associates, LLC


Priscilla has held a variety of strategic global human resource leadership roles at a Fortune 10 company over the course of her 30-year career. She currently provides executive coaching, leadership and organizational development consulting with Archangel and Associates. She is a sought-after speaker, teacher and author/blogger. Priscilla has a passion for strengthening leaders, teams and organizations to clarify and fulfill their purpose, and she believes that “everything rises and falls on leadership.” She is also a member of the Board of Directors of NAWBO-Greater Detroit.

Sunday, September 18, 4-4:45 : The Power and Practices of Servant Leadership” breakout session

Priscilla ArchangelCrystal Arredondo 

MPACT Financial Group


Crystal Arredondo is a Partner at MPACT Financial Group and a Retirement Planning Specialist. After obtaining her MBA in Finance at the University of North Texas, she began her career as a financial advisor. She realized that her parents could have avoided many difficult obstacles in running their own small family business for years with financial guidance and trusted advice. As a result, her passion is working with people to provide a “total strategy” for a successful retirement. Another area of focus is helping owners of closely held businesses plan for succession and transition out of their businesses.

Sunday, September 18, 1:00-2:45 pm: Leadership General Session: "Who Me?"  Identifying the elephant in the room and the secrets to breaking through barriers of communication.

Jill Calabrese Bain 

Managing Director
Small Business Banking National Sales Executive
Preferred & Small Business Banking
Bank of America


Jill has been in the financial services industry for 22 years and is currently the Small Business Banking National Sales Executive. She also serves as the co-enterprise executive sponsor for the LEAD for Women Virtual Chapter and the executive sponsor for the Consumer Leadership Program, two programs dedicated to promoting and accelerating professional development opportunities through education, mentoring and coaching, and participates in several mentoring programs. Prior to her current role, Jill was responsible for leading Employee Banking & Investments, Affinity Banking and Bank at Work. Jill graduated from Tufts University with a Master’s degree in economics, and she also holds a Bachelor’s degree in economics from Clark University. 

Kelly BorthKelly Borth

Founder, Author, Speaker


Kelly is a strategic advisor to CEOs, best selling author of The Only Business Book You’ll Ever Need, speaker and monthly columnist for Smart Business magazine. In 1990, Kelly founded GREENCREST, a strategic marketing, advertising, public relations and interactive agency that provides strategic marketing direction for small- and mid-market privately-held companies. Kelly leads her team as chief strategy officer, in propelling businesses from market players to distinguished market leaders. Her awards include Ohio Women in Business Champion, NAWBO Visionary Honoree, EOY Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist and Power Player of Columbus. 

Tuesday 11:30-12:30 “Looks of Leadership” Breakout Session 

Michael Cariolano

Vice President and Small Business Leader for Great Lakes Region
Wells Fargo 


Michael is Vice President and Small Business Leader for the Great Lakes Region in Wells Fargo.  He is responsible for consulting with senior leaders to ensure that team members have the knowledge and skill to help business owners achieve financial success. Michael started his career at Wells Fargo as a teller and has held numerous leadership roles over the last 15 years, including District Manager in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Raleigh, North Carolina, and Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina.

Tuesday, 11:30-12:30, Managing Credit for Business Success

Lydia Chicles

BOLD! Technologies


Since founding BOLD! Technologies, Lydia has been a WBENC-certified mobile apps and connected technologies provider. Lydia has worked with small start-ups as well as some of the world’s largest brands helping them reimagine their offerings for the millennial marketplace through her innovative approach to strategy, development and design. She is president of NAWBO-Orlando, mentor at Founders Institute and volunteer at community events centered around the arts. She is passionate about helping with activities and workshops that help girls in STEM achieve confidence!

Tuesday 11:30-12:30 “Looks of Leadership” Breakout Session

Laura MacGregor Comek

Laura M. Comek Law LLC


Laura is the founder of Laura M. Comek Law LLC. Laura’s work is focused in real estate, general business and government relations practice areas. She represents for profit businesses, not-for profits, government agencies and academic organizations with various legal needs. Laura handles all facets of real estate transactions, from site acquisition and entitlements to annexation and development. She often handles incentives and other economic development matters for her clients as well as business and commercial/corporate matters, both transactional and litigation.

Sunday, 4:00-4:45 p.m. Leadership Development Training/Advocacy Breakout Session

Jacqueline Connor 

Attorney, Division of Privacy and Identity Protection
Federal Trade Commission


Jacqueline is an attorney in the Division of Privacy and Identity Protection at the Federal Trade Commission in Washington, D.C. She investigates and litigates violations of U.S. laws enforced by the Commission that govern the privacy and security of consumer information. Jacqueline served as a staff attorney on the FTC v. Wyndham Worldwide litigation, and is currently working on various non-public investigations and consent negotiations. She has investigated and resolved matters involving data security, privacy, the Child Online Privacy Protection Act, the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act. 

Tuesday, September 20, 10:00-11:00 am: Panelist on Cyber Security breakout session

Amber Cooney

Director of Development & Communications


Amber is Director of Development & Communications at PeopleFund. She is responsible for PeopleFund’s comprehensive development strategy, including managing donor relations, community investment, fundraising and grant writing. She also oversees the organization’s external messaging, special events, community programs, public relations and online presence. Amber also advocates for policy action and legislation that supports economic development and community growth. 

Monday, 11:30-12:30 An Alternative to Traditional Bank Financing


Marta A. Codina

Community Banking Area President
Wells Fargo


Marta is a regional banking area president for Wells Fargo Bank, where she oversees western Iowa retail banking operations. She joined Wells Fargo in 2001 and has since served as a regional development manager and an area manager for Wells Fargo Home Mortgage.  She was also a founding member of the Wells Fargo Central Iowa Diversity and Inclusion Council and is immediate past chair of that group, which coordinates Wells Fargo’s local efforts around diversity and inclusion.  

Tuesday, 12:30-2:30 p.m., General Session Speaker

Lillian Covington

Vice President of Resource Development
Opportunity International


Originally from Nairobi, Kenya, Lillian joined Opportunity International in 2004 and is a Vice President of Resource Development in Illinois. Lillian is honored to work for an organization that empowers poor people in places where they have traditionally suffered from discrimination, and knows first-hand that a significant part of the answer to world poverty is providing the poor with small loans, allowing them to step out of poverty through their own hard work and resourcefulness.

Tuesday luncheon speaker 

Mary Cravets

Strategic Business Coach


Mary Cravets is the Chair of the President’s Assembly Steering Committee and Past President of the NAWBO Sedona-Verde Valley chapter. Mary is a Strategic Business Coach specializing in helping small and micro-business owners significantly grow their businesses while maintaining work-life balance. Mary is also an accomplished and engaging speaker who is consistently invited to speak for NAWBO and dozens of other notable business organizations. She has owned her own businesses for the past 13 years working in the fields of real estate, business events, and now business coaching.

Tuesday, 10:00–11:00 am, Get the Most out of your NAWBO Membership: 5 Smart Strategies to Leverage NAWBO to Build Your Business

Doris M. Davis

Sr. Marketing Manager for Business Member Acquisition
Sam’s Club


Doris is Sr. Marketing Manager for Business Member Acquisition at Sam’s Club. Her focus is on strategically growing SMB memberships and partnerships. In her prior role at Sam’s Club, Doris led the marketing team driving Health & Wellness solutions, where she launched the company’s partnership with Aetna, led the company’s The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) efforts and launched the company’s largest discount program for prescription medications. Her healthcare expertise grew the company’s share of market and expanded the footprint of optical, hearing aid and pharmacy specialty departments. 

Tuesday, 10:00–11:00 am, WBO Lessons learned: successful WBO vendors 

Sharon DeLay

BoldlyGO Career & HR Management 


Sharon is a certified HR professional and President of BoldlyGO Career and HR Management, a full-service, full-cycle HR consulting firm, specializing in working with micro to small businesses, primarily in the professional services industries. Services include recruiting and onboarding employees, performance review management, strategic HR, HR audits, DISC assessment and on-site HR support. Sharon is the VP of Communications for NAWBO-Columbus, the Secretary of the Board for the Women’s Small Business Accelerator and facilitates the In-Transition group for the Human Resource Association of Central Ohio. She also participates on several advisory committees, contributing both an HR and small business perspective.

Tuesday, 11:30-12:30 pm, HR-Creative Hiring Solution from Gen Z to Baby Boomers

Diane EllisDiane M. Ellis

The Limited, LLC


Diane joined The Limited, LLC, headquartered in New Albany, Ohio, as Chief Executive Officer in August 2013, responsible for all company revenue and operations, strategic planning, brand positioning and marketing. Prior to taking this position, she was President and Chief Operating Officer of Brooks Brothers Group, Inc., and the Founding Partner of Lighthouse Retail Group. 

Tuesday, September 20, 11:30-12:30 pm: Look of Leadership breakout session

Laurie Fabiano

Tory Burch Foundation


Laurie has a long history of advancing philanthropic endeavors. As Senior Vice President of the Robin Hood Foundation for 10 years, she helped grow the organization’s grant making from $11 to $154 million to support poverty-fighting organizations. She also produced Robin Hood’s annual fundraiser, the most financially successful non-political fundraiser in the country. Most recently, she ran her own marketing and events company, Fab Tool. She is the author of the best-selling novel Elizabeth Street, which was the basis for her TED talk on the importance of family history.

Monday 11:30-12:30: An Alternative to Traditional Bank Financing Breakout session

Amy Franko

Founder & CEO 
Impact Instruction Group


Amy is the Founder and CEO of Impact Instruction Group, which helps organizations develop their top talent and future leaders through customized leadership and onboarding programs. Her experience within global organizations, such as IBM and Lenovo, shaped her skills as a strategic thinker and leader, often providing new perspectives to clients. Amy is a recognized speaker on leadership development. She is a member of the Association of Talent Development and moderates the group’s Central Ohio Learning Executives Network. She is on the board of the Girl Scouts of Ohio’s Heartland where she is responsible for leading the Council’s efforts in attracting, retaining and developing top board talent.

Monday, September 19, 11:30 am-12:30 pm: “Leading with Impact and Influence” breakout session

Mercedes Eggleton-Garcia

VP, Senior Business Leader
MasterCard Worldwide


Mercedes is Vice President, Senior Business Leader Global Community Relations, responsible for developing relations with consumers, merchants, labor organizations, consumer advocacy groups and governments through MasterCard’s public education campaign, the “Master Your Card (MYC) Program,” which is designed to help these constituents leverage the electronic payment network. Mercedes is also actively involved with key women’s organizations, on behalf of the MYC Program, serving in the roles as keynote speaker and panelist to delivering workshops. 

 Legislative/Policy: Hear From Policy Experts from Capitol Hill

Patricia G. Greene

Paul T. Babson Chair in Entrepreneurial Studies  
Babson College


Patricia is the Paul T. Babson Chair in Entrepreneurial Studies at Babson College, where she formerly served first as Dean of the Undergraduate School and later as Provost. Her current assignment at Babson is to serve as the National Academic Director for the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses and 10,000 Women programs. Patricia is a founding member of the Diana Project, a research group dedicated to studying women business owners and their businesses. She is a former federal appointee to the national advisory board for the SBA’s Small Business Development Centers. 

Monday, September 19, 11:30 am-12:30 pm, Institute Program With Babson

Jenny Grieser 

Senior Director Women’s Economic Empowerment 


Jenny has more than 30 years of experience in merchandising and sourcing. She has been with Walmart for 11 years, as Senior Buyer, Home Category Director and Senior Director of Sourcing for Hardlines and GM/Seasonal. In her current role, Jenny leads Walmart’s global Women’s Economic Empowerment initiative to increase cost purchases with women-owned businesses to $20B for the U.S. market and double cost purchases in Walmart’s international market, train 1 million women in factories, farms and retail and encourage diversity in the make-up of the teams that support Walmart. 

Tuesday, 10:00–11:00 am, WBO Lessons learned: successful WBO vendors

Karen Harrison

Senior Vice President
Small Business Client Management
Market Manager – Southern CA/West Region
Bank of America


Karen manages the Southern California Client Management Team for the West Region, responsible for delivering complex credit and treasury solutions to priority small business clients, while also ensuring clients benefit from the full franchise value of Bank of America/Merrill Lynch. Karen joined Bank of America in 2011 as the Small Business Banking Manager for San Diego, Imperial and South Riverside counties. She has also served as Sales Performance Manager of the Small Business Credit Field Specialists in the West and Central Regions.   

Millie Herrera, MBA

The Miami Group


Millie founded and leads The Miami Group, a boutique management, IT, marketing strategies and public affairs consulting firm that focuses on helping organizations grow to their next level of excellence. She was a presidential appointee at the U.S. Department of Labor as Southeast Regional Representative for Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis from 2012-2013. Millie was also a 2004 Fellow of the National Hispana Leadership Institute Executive Leadership Program.

Sunday, September 18th at 4-4:45pm: Advocacy: Leading By Example

Mary Hiland, Ph.D.

Hiland Consulting


Mary has 40 years of experience with nonprofits—as an executive, on boards and consulting. She understands first-hand the daily challenges nonprofit leaders face. After leading two mergers, she became the CEO of a nonprofit with 530 employees. After 26 years as an executive (and years of board service), Mary has been consulting and coaching nonprofits for the last 14 years. Her passion is working with nonprofit leaders to unleash the potential of the board and strengthen the board-executive relationship. Mary is a published author, speaker, trainer and researcher. 

Sunday, September 18th , 2:45-3:45 pm, Presidents Meeting

Jane Hils Shea

Frost Brown Todd


Jane’s experience in the banking industry includes more than 16 years as corporate counsel for several regional banks, and she concentrates her practice in the financial and the electronic payments industries. She has lead Frost Brown Todd’s Privacy & Information Security practice area since its creation in 2001, and she counsels a diverse collection of clients ranging from financial institutions with a national footprint to start-up e-businesses.


Mikaela Hunt

Brand Journalist 
Mikaela Media


Mikaela is an award-winning journalist who spent nearly 17 years in TV news, traveling around the country and working in every seat, from producer to anchor. She now owns Mikaela Media, helping companies and organizations tell their stories through videos that explore their innovations, unique cultures and philanthropic efforts. A mom of two young boys, she recently launched the “Momcast” podcast with two other local moms to create an authentic and engaging conversation, in partnership with Saga Communications. Mikaela is a NAWBO-Columbus member.

 Emcee for all general sessions and Award Gala

Christina Ibrahim

Market Development Manager


Christina has proven success in managing multi-million-dollar affinity relationships with a strong focus on relationship-building and strategic partnership. She joined the FCA Commercial Marketing team in 2011 and her role has since expanded to include overseeing the Small Business Association Partnership Program. With a diverse background in automotive and biotech, her skills include communications, budget management, data analysis and reporting, event management, project management and operations management. 

Part of Monday breakout session “Leading with Impact and Influence”

Dominic Irrcher

Supervisor, Network Solutions Group


Dominic has been helping small- to medium-sized organizations solve their business challenges with technology for 16 years. Currently a supervisor in the network solutions group at Sikich, Dominic oversees all Office 365 projects. Dominic strives to make each migration a success, as client technology goals and business objectives are evaluated to line up with what Office 365 can provide to meet those business goals. Dominic has assisted more than 200 organizations with their migrations into the cloud. Dominic is also a certified Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE). 

Microsoft Workshops on Monday and Tuesday

Elizabeth Isphording

National Sales Performance Executive 
Bank of America


With more than 20 years of financial services experience, Elizabeth is the National Sales Performance Executive and a Senior Vice President for the Small Business Sales organization at Bank of America. She is responsible for overseeing plan performance, sales activity and channel strategy opportunities for 2,000 field sales and client management bankers. Her team focuses on supporting the financial needs of small business owners with up to $5MM annual sales.

Nicole M. Kaeding

Economist, Center for State Tax Policy
Tax Foundation


Nicole is an economist with the Center for State Tax Policy at the Tax Foundation. Previously, Nicole was a budget analyst for the Cato Institute focused on federal and state fiscal policy, and the state policy manager for Americans for Prosperity Foundation where she oversaw the policy activities of AFPF’s 34 state chapters. Nicole’s work has been featured in the Washington PostChicago Tribune, National Public Radio, Huffington PostNational Review Online, and numerous other national, state, and local publications. 

Monday, September 19, 12:45-2:45 pm, Lunch General Session-Public Policy panelist

Cheryl Krueger

Founder and Former President & CEO
Cheryl & Co.

KRUEGER+Co. Consulting, Inc.


Cheryl is founder and former president and CEO of Cheryl & Co., a cookie, gourmet dessert and gift basket retailer that she started in 1981 and grew into a $50 million corporation. In 2005, Cheryl & Co. was sold to 1-800 Flowers, with Cheryl remaining on as CEO until 2009. She founded KRUEGER+Co. Consulting, Inc. in 2009 and serves as its CEO. Its primary focus is to help companies to develop creative marketing and sales strategies as well as evaluate and identify opportunities in product development pipelines, operations, logistics and financial performance. 

Tuesday, 10:00 a.m.-11:30 a.m., Womens’ Business Panel Speaker

Virginia LittlejohnVirginia Littlejohn

CEO and Co-Founder
Quantum Leaps, Inc.


Virginia is CEO and Co-Founder of Quantum Leaps, Inc. She was President of NAWBO in 1984-1985 and Vice President of the World Association of Women Entrepreneurs. She has been an advisor to IBM, American Express and Walmart and was Jury President for the Cartier Women’s Initiative Awards for North America for five years. She is currently developing Roadmaps to 2020 to fuel women’s enterprise development in India and the UAE and is Lead International Consultant for the Women and Trade program of the International Trade Centre.

Sunday, September 18, 9:00-11:00 am: Past Presidents Public Policy Panel

Olivia Loschert

Renew Wellness


Olivia’s yoga journey began her freshman year of college at DePaul University. During her first month there, the gym was offering free yoga, so she decided to take a few classes. She instantly fell in love with the way it made her feel. Today, she is trained in an Ashtanga-inspired Vinyasa style and Sivananda Hatha. She likes teaching and personally practicing Vinyasa style the best. She wants all her students to leave her class feeling empowered—like they could conquer the world!

Every morning at 6:30 am

Ana Martinez

Associate Manager, State Political Outreach


As a Facebook representative, Ana works with state elected officials to introduce Facebook’s safety and business development programs to local communities across the country. She previously worked in Facebook’s Washington, D.C., office on the policy programs team focusing on small and medium-sized businesses. Ana has advised thousands of small business owners in both the United States and Mexico on how to use Facebook to grow their businesses, reach customers and increase sales. She earned her J.D. from the University of Texas School of Law and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature and Political Science from the University of Texas at El Paso. 

Tuesday, September 20, 11:30 am-12:30 pm: “Boost Your Business” breakout session

Priscilla ArchangelTeresa Meares

DGG Uniform and Apparel


Teresa Meares has 19 years of law enforcement experience and is a retired patrol sergeant with the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office. She is currently the President of DGG Tactical and Uniform Supply where she manages 20 full-time and six part-time employees, who operate a distribution of law enforcement, personal self-defense products, business and uniform apparel. Teresa is a published author of the “Think Safe 2 Be Safe” series, with stories focused on teaching children how to stay safe. She is a Past President of the Women’s Business Owners of North Florida, Board of Director for the National Association of Women Business Owners, and Board of Director for the Hubbard House.

Sunday, September 18, 1:00-2:45 pm: Leadership General Session: "Who Me?"  Identifying the elephant in the room and the secrets to breaking through barriers of communication.

Ranjani MohanaRanjani Mohana

President & CEO
R Mo Business Solutions


Ranjani is President & CEO of R Mo Business Solutions, a certifications, procurement and information technology organization that is a catalyst in assisting diversified businesses to venture into corporate and government sectors. She also serves on the Leadership Forum with WRMSDC MBEIC, Astra WBENC and also as a Business Advisor with SBDC Silicon Valley and San Mateo counties.

Monday, September 19, 3:00-4:00 pm: Government Certifications & Procurement, Leading the Way to Contracts 

Esther Morales

Executive Director
National Women’s Business Council (NWBC)


Esther is Executive Director of the NWBC. She has spent her career working within the federal government and in advocacy positions, most recently serving as White House Liaison at the Environmental Protection Agency. Just prior, Esther worked at the White House in the Office of the First Lady as Associate Director of Policy. Over the last six years, she has also served in the Administration at the U.S. Department of Energy, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Administration for Children, Youth and Families.  

Monday, September 19, 10:30 amModerator for the Public Policy breakout session


Ranjani MohanaDonna Musilli

Wardrobe Stylist & Team Leader


With a degree in fashion design and 17 years in sales, management and training in the pharmaceutical industry, Donna Musilli landed in her dream “job” over a dozen years ago as a wardrobe stylist and team leader for cabi, an L.A. based apparel company. During her tenure, she has built an extensive following of private clients as well as grown and coached a team of more than 80 brand ambassadors in 15 states. In both capacities, she is driven to support and inspire women to discover and reach their full potential. 

Tuesday 11:30-12:30 “Looks of Leadership” Breakout Session 

Dr. Terry Neese

Founder and CEO
Institute for Economic Empowerment of Women


As CEO and Founder, Terry leads the Institute for Economic Empowerment of Women to accomplish its mission through public policy and entrepreneurial education training programs for women business owners. Since its creation in 2006, the PEACE THROUGH BUSINESS® program has empowered more than 600 women entrepreneurs in Afghanistan and Rwanda. Terry is also the Founder of Terry Neese Personnel Services and is known as a small business expert.  

Sunday, September 18, 9:00-11:00 am: Past Presidents Public Policy Panel 

Andrea Pedraza

Founder and Owner


Andrea is founder and owner of CocoAndre, a family-owned specialty chocolate shop located in Dallas’ Bishop Arts District. Laid off within months of each other during the recession, Andrea and her daughter Cindy opened CocoAndre. In 2015, the women looked to acquire a loan to expand their business and found PeopleFund, who provided a loan through the Tory Burch Foundation Capital Program, enabling them to purchase additional equipment and open an updated storefront. 

Monday, 11:30-12:30 An Alternative to Traditional Bank Financing

Jennifer PingJennifer Ping

Bose Public Affairs


Jennifer has extensive experience in government relations, legislative and executive branch lobbying and political consulting. She has been honored as the 2011 Purdue University Emerging Voice/Outstanding Alumni and 2012 NAWBO-Indianapolis Member of the Year. Jennifer serves as immediate past chair of the Marion County GOP (she’s the first female elected to that post). She is also vice chair for both the Marion County GOP and 7th Indiana Congressional District and co-chairs the NAWBO-Indianapolis Government Affairs Committee.

Sunday, September 18, 4:00-4:45 pm: Panelist for “Advocacy: Leading By Example”

Elizabeth Romero

SVP, Small Business Central Division Executive 
Bank of America


Elizabeth is the Small Business Central Division Executive for Bank of America. The Central Division is responsible for delivering Small Business solutions to clients across 10 states: Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. Additionally, the division oversees phone-based Client Management sites in Troy, MI and St. Louis, MO. Elizabeth is responsible for developing and implementing the overall sales plan and strategy for the profitable expansion and retention of the Small Business Banking segment within Bank of America’s footprint. 

Cynthia Riggs, MBA

The Biz Diva


Cynthia is the Biz Diva, an “on the ground” business consultant who learned how to build a profitable seven-figure business through the school of hard knocks. In 2004, she sold Making It Big, her multi-million-dollar mail order/catalog company and began her fourth enterprise, Women Building Business, a consulting/coaching company that propels women to reach the million-dollar mark and assists women who are already there. The foundation of her work is supporting women to express their passion, make a good living and to be the best they can be. 

Monday, September 19, 3:00-4:00 pm: Workshop on One Page Business Plan—Train the Trainer (PASC members) 

Meredith Schnur, CPCU

Senior Vice President, Professional Risk Practice
Wells Fargo Insurance


With 22 years of insurance industry experience, Meredith is the national practice leader for the Professional Risk Practice at Wells Fargo Insurance. In this role, she oversees the regional operations for all executive liability and professional liability lines of coverage. She also serves as an in-house resource for all professional liability, technology errors and omissions, media liability, network security and privacy-related lines of coverage. 

Tuesday, September 20, 10:00-11:00 am. Panelist for “Technology Putting Your Business at Risk” breakout session

Anna Schott

& Co-Founder
Renew Wellness


Anna is a Registered Yoga Teacher Level 200 through Yoga Alliance. She was trained at Studio Om in 2011 and has been practicing for 14 years. Yoga has been an integral part of her emotional, physical and spiritual development. Anna primarily teaches Vinyasa yoga, and she is passionate about incorporating mindfulness and the mind/body connection in her practice. She integrates this concept by using breath work, postures and connection to the true self.

Every morning at 6:30 am

Viktoria Z. Seale

Senior Counsel for Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH)
U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Small Business


Viktoria serves as the Senior Counsel for Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH) of the Committee on Small Business in the U.S. House of Representatives. She is responsible for oversight, legislation, strategy and outreach related to federal regulatory issues that affect small businesses.  Viktoria joined the Committee in 2012 as Counsel to then-Chairman Sam Graves (R-MO). Her previous experience includes serving as the Special Assistant to the Chief Counsel and the Director of Regional Affairs in the Office of Advocacy at the U.S. Small Business Administration. 

Monday, September 19, 10:30 am: Public policy breakout session 

Emily Shanks

Division Sales Executive, Small Business Banking
Bank of America


Emily Shanks is the Division Sales Executive for the Small Business Banking National Sales team for the West Region. She leads a team of Small Business Banking Managers, Small Business Bankers and Client Managers focused on meeting the needs of small business customers. In addition, Emily integrates with lines of business across the enterprise, including working closely with Financial Centers, Customer Contact Centers, Commercial Banking, Global Wealth & Investment Management, Merchant and Corporate leadership in the implementation of the Small Business Banking sales and service model. 

Noel Shepard

Frost Brown Todd


Noel represents a wide variety of companies in employment-related defense litigation and consulting services. Her practice focuses on defending employers of all sizes in every aspect of workers’ compensation, from injury prevention to settlement. She offers her clients advice regarding policy writing, accident prevention and investigation, cost containment and defense strategy. Noel is also the Member-in-Charge of the Columbus office of Frost Brown Todd. 

Kirstin SimonsonKirstin Simonson, CPCU, ARM, AU, ASLI

2VP, Cyber Lead Global Technology


Kirstin is 2nd VP, Cyber Lead Global Technology for the Travelers Companies, Inc. Her primary expertise is professional liability, errors and omissions and cyber coverages. She has written several articles on cyber risks faced by companies and spoken at several conferences on cyber-related and social media risks. Her objective is to educate various audiences on the exposure environment and provide the basis for risk analysis and the framework for discussion on the various insurance coverages available in the market.

Tuesday, September 20, 10:00-11:00 am: Panelist on Cyber Security breakout session

Julie WeeksJulie R. Weeks

President & CEO 


Julie is the President and CEO of Womenable, a for-profit social enterprise that works to enable women’s entrepreneurship worldwide by improving the systems—laws, policies, programs and research-based knowledge—that support women’s enterprise creation and growth. Prior to launching Womenable, Julie served as Executive Director of the National Women’s Business Council, a federally funded bipartisan policy advisory body, and was Deputy Chief Counsel for Statistics and Research at the U.S. Small Business Administration. She has also worked in the field of market research, including serving as Managing Director of the Center for Women’s Business Research. 

Sunday, September 18, 11:00 am: Past Presidents Public Policy Panel 

Meredith West 

Staff Director for Chairman David Vitter (R-LA)  
U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship


Meredith is the Staff Director for Chairman David Vitter (R-LA) on the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship. She is responsible for all Committee activities, including policy, oversight, strategy and legislative agenda. A 15-year veteran of small business policy, Meredith has been with the Committee for over seven years, previously serving under former Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME) and Senator James Risch (R-ID). Prior to that, she served as Assistant Administrator for Policy and Strategic Planning at the SBA (Senior Executive Service level) from 2007-2009.  

Tuesday, 11:30-12:30,  Legislative/Policy breakout session

Julie Gordon White 

Founder & CEO 
The WELL for Women Entrepreneurs


Julie, an award-winning entrepreneur and best-selling author, has advised hundreds of entrepreneurs as the Founder of a multi-million-dollar boutique M&A firm and also The WELL for Women Entrepreneurs. Through The WELL, she teaches women how to “grow to a million and someday sell for a million” through an online training system called “Accelerate!” and her multi-city event, “SYMPOSIA :: Conference for Women Entrepreneurs.”

Tuesday, September 20, 10:00-11:00 am: “Exit! 12 Steps to Sell Your Business for the Price You Deserve” breakout session

Joan WoodwardJoan K. Woodward

President, Travelers Institute; Executive Vice President, Public Policy


Joan is Executive Vice President of Public Policy for Travelers and President of the Travelers Institute. She joined Travelers in 2008 from Goldman, Sachs & Co., where she was the founding Executive Director of the company’s Global Markets Institute. Prior to joining Goldman Sachs, Joan worked on Capitol Hill for 12 years, serving as Deputy Chief of Staff for the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance, as well as Senior Economist for the U.S. Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs and the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Budget.

Tuesday, September 20, 10:00-11:00 am: Moderating the Cyber Security breakout session

Laura Yamanaka Laura Yamanaka

President and Co-Founder 
teamCFO, Inc.

Laura is President and one of the founders of teamCFO, Inc., a financial and accounting firm offering on-site customized CFO/Controller services on an as-needed basis. She has more than 30 years of experience in a large variety of financial service companies. As a long-time champion of financial literacy for women business owners, she has lectured on the subject to diverse audiences, including young girls who are aspiring businesswomen. 

Sunday, September 18, 9:00-11:00 am: Past Presidents Public Policy Panel 

Janel Young  

Founder and CEO 
Nava Pets

Janel is founder and CEO of Nava Pets, Inc. She has 15-plus years of leadership and managerial expertise in financial services, real estate, marketing and education. She previously worked in environments ranging from political/government agencies, real estate and educational services to Fortune 500 companies. This broad range of skills and experiences combined with her strong passion for animal advocacy to launch Nava Pets in 2013. Janel is active in many organizations, including NAWBO and her charity Pet Style 4Life. 

Panelist on Walmart Breakout Session: WBO Lessons Learned