Corporate A-Listers Speak Out on Race and Gender Issues at 2007 Spelman College Leadership and Women of Color Conference

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Conference offers bridge-building issues, practices and solutions and Ann Fudge as keynote speaker.

The fourth annual Leadership and Women of Color Conference, hosted by the Spelman College Center for Leadership & Civic Engagement, will build on its reputation of fostering frank and engaging dialogue, May 8 - 10 in Atlanta.

The 2007 Spelman College Leadership and Women of Color Conference, themed "Building Bridges: Issues, Practices and Solutions," is set to address leadership, workplace, lifestyle and diversity issues that (stet-OK) affect women of color. Workshops and topics include: "Funny You Don't Look Indian," "Work/Life Integration -- Balance is Everything on this Job and the Next," "Leadership Brilliance Can Be Yours," Understanding Power in the Workplace" and "Building Bridges of Trust and Collaboration Among Women of Color."

Ann Fudge, former chairman and CEO, Young & Rubicam Brands and former president, Beverages, Desserts and Post Division -- a $5 Billion unit of Kraft Foods -- will deliver the keynote address on May 9.

"Women and people of color are accomplishing great things in the corporate structure. This year's keynote speaker, Ann Fudge, is a perfect example of that. However, issues of color, diversity, equal opportunity and advancement still exist," said Jane E. Smith, Ed.D., executive director, Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement, also known as LEADS, at Spelman College. "The 2007 Leadership and Women of Color Conference will address issues that are prevalent among women of color while providing solutions to help them succeed in the workforce, the community and their personal lives. We will also take a look at how we have progressed over the generations and explore the legacy to be passed on to emerging leaders. This conference is sure to be one of the best."

Kicking-off this year's conference is "A Conversation on Race, Class and Gender" with Mazie Ferguson, a great grandniece of Mary McLeod Bethune, and Anna Eleanor Roosevelt, granddaughter of former First Lady, Eleanor Roosevelt. Moderated by award-winning poet and Spelman alumna Pearl Cleage, on May 8, this conversation highlights the historic lessons and achievements brought forth by building bridges outside of our own race. It also serves as the catalyst for continuing building among people of color.

Other distinguished speakers include:

  •     Spelman College President Beverly Daniel Tatum, author of the new book, Can We Talk About Race? And Other Conversations in an Era of School Resegregation
  •     Beverly Wright, former chairperson Wampanoag Tribe
  •     Juana Bordas, president, Mestiza Leadership International
  •     Kiran Ahuja, executive director, National Asian Pacific American Women's Forum
  •     Rosie Molinary, author of Hijas Americanas
  •     Jessica Faye Carter, attorney and author of Double Outsiders: How Women of Color Can Succeed in Corporate America

The three-day event will be held at Spelman College and the Cobb Galleria Centre, respectively. Conference schedule and additional details including registration can be found by visiting http://www.spelmanwomenofcolorconf.com.

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J. GLASS CANTRELL
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