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The much-anticipated Women’s Leadership Summit (WLS) hosted by the Junior League of New Orleans is set to take place later this year. Lagniappe spoke with those involved in the preparations to get a glimpse of how the planning is coming along.

Q: What is the date of the Women’s Leadership Summit, and where will it be held? A: The WLS will take place Tuesday, October 20, 2020 at the Sheraton Hotel New Orleans.

Q: What can we expect from the Women’s Leadership Summit? A: The summit is designed to be a one-day conference focused on training individuals who are impacting their community through their personal growth, professional development and social presence. “Anyone with an interest in leadership is welcome to attend this conference,” says Emily Liuzza, WLS Co-chair. “While the content is still being finalized, attendees can anticipate a strategic mix of educational sessions, expert panelists, a keynote luncheon and a networking happy hour culminating with the WE Fellowship pitch event.”

Q: What is the committee’s vision for this program? A: According to Lacy McManus, WLS Co-chair, “We foresee a summit that has two-fold purpose. Primarily, we aim to inspire attendees to make a meaningful impact in their personal lives, professional careers and community actions. From taking care of their families and leading successful careers to giving back to their communities, people today wear so many hats. With this in mind, we also want to foster a broader network of support and empowerment as they pursue their life goals.”

Q: How are plans coming together for a successful event in October? A: Through the early planning stage, the exploratory committee successfully identified their priorities and focused on their strengths. The venue has been set, the framework of the program has been ironed out, and the committee is diligently booking speakers and soliciting sponsors. JLNO President-Elect, Kristin Van Hook Moore, notes, “Since the pivot to move the event to the fall of 2020, I have been so impressed with the group’s clear vision and how quickly they moved to begin working on what I hope will become a signature event for JLNO.”

Q: Can you explain the tie in with the JLNO’s Women’s Entrepreneur (WE) Fellowship? A: The WE Fellowship was created in 2016 to support female business owners through mentoring and in-kind services. Presenting the WE Fellowship award at WLS will provide a larger platform for women-owned businesses, which will be an added bonus for the finalists. Evie Poitevent Sanders, Business Council Chair, is looking forward to this new partnership opportunity with the two programs. “The inclusion of the WE Fellowship is especially exciting. This fellowship has always epitomized JLNO’s mission of ‘women empowering women,’ so it makes perfect sense to highlight female entrepreneurs making an impact at the WLS.”

The Junior League of New Orleans is proud to launch this new program as a part of their vision for 2020. Exceptional efforts are underway to ensure this summit will provide a platform to share ideas, expand networks and learn from others how to be your best leader. We look forward to seeing you there!

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League leadership meets to discuss the upcoming Women’s Leadership Summit. Photo submitted by: Susana Ruddock