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UK Women's Forum Conference: Elevate 2019

UK Women's Forum
Gatton Student Center Ballroom
Wednesday, Oct 16, 2019 at 8:00 AM (ET)

The UK Women’s Forum Board invites you to register for Elevate 2019 our annual conference, October 16 in the Gatton Student Center. This day-long conference will include meals, door prizes, and your choice of four breakout sessions. We will be inspired to elevate our personal games from our keynote speaker Debbie Ferguson-McKenzie, UK Assistant Women’s Track and Field Coach and three-time Olympian. Please read below for a brief overview of our conference agenda including session titles and speaker information:

8:00-9:00AM –Breakfast & Registration

9:00-9:30AM – Welcome Ceremony

9:30-10:20AM –
Session 1 (choose one)

Leanna Hartsough and Eric Wilkinson present Communicating Mindfully - Power hierarchies embedded in formalized organizational structures intersect with sociological hierarchies to marginalize people and perspectives, limit diversity in ideas, and shut down substantive dialogue. Bias against vulnerable and minority populations often emerges in organizational decision making. In this workshop, we will: 1. Review research on the benefits of mindfulness practices, including communicating mindfully, with experiential mindfulness learning opportunities for participants; 2. Summarize the 5 processes of mindful organizing applicable to transforming work environments; and 3. Critically assess the potential for enhancing diversity and reducing bias in high reliability organizations.
Dee Dlugonski presents Movement Mentors - Being physically active is an important part of leading a healthy lifestyle. Yet, approximately 50% of adults do not achieve recommended levels of activity and women are less likely than men to meet physical activity guidelines. Starting and maintaining a physical activity routine is challenging, especially while balancing multiple responsibilities such as work, caregiving, and other commitments. This session will feature a panel of physically active, professional women who will share their physical activity story – how they got started, the challenges they have faced, and tips for maintaining their active lifestyle. The audience will have the opportunity to ask questions and engage in discussion with the panelists.
Ashley Tabb presents Simple Daily Disciplines - Developing certain disciplines and doing them daily can lead to career advancement, financial growth, weight loss and other success goals. Participants will learn the difference between contact and clarity statements. They will be asked to brainstorm in pairs and write their own. We will discuss the three reasons people don't implement daily disciplines even though they know they should. A video will be shown that explains how the 5 second rule can help them get started. We will learn tips to stay consistent once daily disciplines are determined and started.
Rosa Mejia and Kristie Colón present How Onboarding Employees Can Change the Office Culture - What if you could turn an insignificant workplace experience into something meaningful—something that becomes a defining moment? Too many times we repeat a process because that’s how it’s always been done. Yet with some simple changes, we can transform ordinary into amazing. During this talk, we’ll discuss how intentionality and planning can shift the mentality of employees and supervisors and create advocates for your work. We’ll take a look at adding fun to the every-day and discover how ordinary moments in the workplace can transform your office culture.

10:30-11:20AM –
Session 2 (choose one)

Jillian Pyatte presents Elevate Your Public Speaking - This session will introduce the basics of strong public speaking to help attendees build confidence and elevate this skill set. Concepts presented will include power poses, positive self-talk, and visualization as well as general tips and tricks for preparation and presentation.
Ashley Gei presents Build Your Brand - Whether you are just starting out, or well on your way, your professional brand is the key to all new opportunities. LinkedIn is a great professional resource to self-market to employers. Attend and learn 5 LinkedIn steps that will connect you to multiple opportunities in the world of work.
Faith N. Cracraft & Azetta Beatty present Stretched Too Thin - Using the book Stretched Too Thin by Jessica N. Turner as a springboard, this session will discuss ways you can be a parenting rockstar while excelling at your career here at UK. This interactive session will have you sharing self-care ideas with other attendees, debunking the myth of work life balance, and looking at best practices of what you do that helps your work/parenting “balance”. You'll hear from some current UK Parents about things they've done to help with this "balance" and learn about university resources available to you as an employee.
Karen Slaymaker presents Engaging with International Community - This session will introduce ways in which we can engage with the international community living in Kentucky and several community organizations who are looking for volunteers. Through storytelling, international members of the community will talk about what the UK International Hospitality Program, KY Refugee Ministries, and the International Book Project have meant to them. Participants in this session will leave with ways that they could volunteer one time or over a longer period of engagement. Participants will also gain a better understanding of the international community here in Kentucky.

11:30-12:15PM – Keynote Speaker:  Debbie Ferguson-McKenzie

12:15 -1:00PM
– Lunch & Roundtable Discussions

1:10-2:00PM –
Session 3 (choose one)

Alison Begor presents Banish Burnout - Employees in 2019 juggle many different priorities and stressors. In addition, many people have access to technology around the clock so it’s no wonder burnout is a challenge for many leaders. Burnout can lead to a drop in engagement, productivity, and ultimately your personal success. In this session, you will learn strategies to banish your own burnout as well as ways to recognize and banish burnout in other employees. You will learn proven strategies that can be immediately implemented for yourself as well as ideas on how you can help support employees, lessen burnout, and increase productivity.
Terri Lundberg presents The 36-Hour Day - This seminar will cover proven concepts, strategies and tools to help professionals evaluate, redirect, and refine the use of their time in accomplishing daily activities at both work and home. Concepts: decision-making prioritization and return on time investment. Strategies: internal /external interruption, meeting, email and personal health and relationship management. Tools: Book and app recommendations, work environment, and digital content.
Renee Jones presents Pack Your Own Bag - One of the best things we can do to care for ourselves is to unpack and offload the baggage we've dragged with us for decades. When we no longer spend energy holding on to the old baggage and allowing it to block us from pursuing our goals and dreams, we can stand again, look around, and discover our best selves. Our best selves make much better choices in all areas. Three elements include: believe it's possible to be one's best, recognize what's inside so we can heal and make room for change, and cultivating our best selves.
Tamika Tompoulidis presents Mastering Your Executive Presence: Using Nonverbal Skills to Manage First Impressions - This presentation will demonstrate the right interpersonal and nonverbal skills needed to create and enhance an executive presence, when speaking to any audience or groups of people. This session includes managing first impressions, building self-confidence, professionalism tactics, and an activity for audience members.

2:10-3:00PM –
Session 4 (choose one)

Vitale Buford presents Embracing Imperfection
- Perfection is the thief of joy. It’s the stealer of fun. And the robber of love. It tells you that nothing is ever good enough. It convinces you that if you look perfect, act perfect, and live perfect, you will be happy. But it’s all an illusion. It’s a trap that keeps us disconnected from joy, from creativity, from our potential, from relationships and love. It keeps us small, fragile and fearful. Fear, shame and guilt are what keeps us stuck in perfectionism, which gets in the way of progress. When we face our fears and embrace our imperfections, we can reach our full potential and realize our dreams. During this session you will learn my 3-step process to overcome your fear of imperfection. The three steps are Get Aware, Get Perspective and Get Going. These three steps involve identifying the perfection patterns that are holding you back, learning the mindset tools you need to shift out of your perfection, and then creating an environment to embrace imperfection.
Heidi Morrow presents Becoming the You-est You
- This session will talk about having a resilient mindset and re-discovering yourself and your life after major life changes and in the midst of a turbulent world. We will explore the topics of vulnerability, depression, loneliness, anxiety, hope, finding peace, love, motivation, joy, and inspiration with and within yourself.
Rhonda Henry presents Who Am I and How Did I Get Here? - It is easy to get swept away in the demands of work, children, partners, caregiving, school and so much more. It can be overwhelming and sometimes it feels like we lose ourselves along the way. This session will encourage participants to step back from the day to day demands of life and explore their individual needs and goals. We will use the Wheel of Life activity as part of this assessment. Participants will also be encouraged to choose 1-2 small steps they can take toward their goals. The presenter will also provide a brief overview of campus, community and online resources that may be useful. If time and space allow, participants will also create a small takeaway item to remind them of their goals. 

3:00-3:30PM – Closing 

3:45-4:30PM – KORU (optional)

Conference registration is $25.00 and includes breakfast, lunch, and all conference materials. UK Staff/Faculty/Students will receive a discounted rate of $15. If you are a general member of the Women’s Forum, please check your email for your special discount code. Conference rates are as follows:

Community $25
UK Staff/Faculty $15
Women’s Forum General Members $10

The UK Women’s Forum Board is also pleased to announce conference scholarship opportunities for current UK staff and faculty. The conference scholarship is one way the UK Women’s Forum is holding true to its mission of empowering women. The scholarship will allow recipients to attend Elevate 2019 free of charge. Completed applications must be received by 5:00pm (EST) on October 2, 2019. Please read through the application carefully and include all required documents to be eligible for consideration. You may apply for a conference scholarship here: Conference attendees are also encouraged to ask for financial support from their respective departments.

The UK Women's Forum is an organization for all employees of the University — faculty and staff. Our mission is to exert a leadership role in empowering, validating, informing, including and celebrating all women employed at the University of Kentucky by addressing the challenges, communicating issues, and recognizing successes within the context of the workplace.

For all ticketing questions, please contact Conference Committee member, Kristen Pickett ( For general conference inquiries, please email Conference Chair, Drew Elisabeth Ard (

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