McDonald’s® to Engage with Crafting Bloggers and Entrepreneurs as Lead Sponsor of BlogHer Handmade and The Creative Connection

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BlogHer Handmade launches as part of second annual The Creative Connection, a conference for women turning their passions into full-fledged entrepreneurial ventures

BlogHer, Inc., the premium cross-platform media network and publisher for women, today announced that McDonald’s is the lead, Platinum-level sponsor of BlogHer Handmade and The Creative Connection, a national conference and marketplace celebrating creative women and entrepreneurs, September 15-17 in St. Paul, MN.

“BlogHer has joined forces with The Creative Connection to empower the women in our community to realize the entrepreneurial opportunity presented by their own work and substantial social media profiles,” said Elisa Camahort Page, Co-founder and COO of BlogHer, Inc. “Kudos to McDonald’s for leading the way, and engaging in authentic dialog with one of the fastest growing segments of our community.”

Platinum Sponsor McDonald’s will sponsor Saturday’s Women Entrepreneurs VIP Breakfast , featuring McDonald’s wholesome Fruit & Maple Oatmeal and Fruit & Walnut Salad. The company will also participate in a workshop for attendees titled “Working with a Sponsor: What Does It Mean and How Do You Find One”. As the country's leading foodservice provider with more than 14,000 U.S. locations, more than 90% of McDonald’s restaurants nationwide are owned and operated by independent local men and women.

“McDonald’s is committed to engaging in real two-way dialogue with the communities we serve, including the growing blogger community, and BlogHer Handmade and The Creative Connection provide the perfect opportunity to do just that,” said Jessica Rau, Manager of External Communications, McDonald’s USA. “We are proud to be a part of this wonderful event, and I am honored to speak on behalf of McDonald’s to such an inspiring group of creative and savvy women.”

Jessica Rau, Manager of External Communications at McDonald’s USA, will participate in the “Working with a Sponsor” panel taking place at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, September 16th. On the panel she will speak to the benefits of working with a sponsor, and offer tips on how to find the right one. In Rau’s current role at McDonald’s, she is responsible for developing innovative public relations programs and strategies that support McDonald’s marketing campaigns and new product launches. Rau began her career at American Marketing and Publishing before joining McDonald’s in 2004. She has since assumed various positions throughout the company including Corporate Media Relations, U.S. Communications, and Public Relations. She is a founding member and co-chair of McDonald’s Young Professionals Network (YPN) which provides professional development and networking skills to McDonald’s future leaders. She is also a member of McDonald’s Women’s Leadership Network, and actively participates in Junior Achievement which is dedicated to educating students about workforce readiness and entrepreneurship.

The Creative Connection, now in its second year, celebrates entrepreneurial artisans. The conference features both inspirational role models, such as Cristina Ferrare and Holly Becker, and practical hands-on workshops, to help attendees hone their craft and bolster how they market their craft.

“The Creative Connection 2011 will welcome over 600 women from every state in America, plus seven foreign countries including Australia, Taiwan, and Slovenia,” says Jo Packham, President of The Creative Connection. “We’re experiencing a resurgence in every age range and every income bracket. It’s going viral and being noticed!”

For more information, please visit http://www.blogher.com/blogher-handmade.

About BlogHer
Reaching more than 26 million women each month (Nielsen Site Census, August 2011), BlogHer is the leading cross-platform media network created by, for and with women social media leaders. BlogHer created and leads the marketplace with the most robust economic and networking opportunities for women in social media and brands seeking to engage in authentic and persuasive dialog with them. Founded in February 2005 by Elisa Camahort Page, Jory Des Jardins and Lisa Stone, BlogHer publishes and syndicates news, information, advice and recommendations to and from 2,500 premium blogs, delivers uniquely insightful research on women in social media across interest areas, hosts the world’s largest conferences for women in social media and curates a daily news service, BlogHer.com. BlogHer’s investors are Venrock, GE/NBC Universal's Peacock Equity Fund, and Azure Capital Partners.

About McDonald’s
McDonald’s USA, LLC, is the leading foodservice provider in the United States serving a variety of wholesome food made from quality ingredients to more than 26 million customers every day. Nearly 90 percent of McDonald’s 14,000 U.S. restaurants are independently owned and operated by local business men and women. Customers can now log online for free at any of the 11,000 participating Wi-Fi enabled McDonald’s U.S. restaurants. For more information, visit http://www.mcdonalds.com, or follow us on Twitter (@McDonalds) and Facebook (Facebook.com/McDonalds) for updates on our business, promotions and products.

About The Creative Connection
In 2010, The Creative Connection brought together industry leaders and passionate creative women and women entrepreneurs to learn, create and connect at their three-day conference in Minneapolis, MN. Co-founded by Nancy Soriano, former editor in chief of Country Living Magazine and Jo Packham, creator and editor in chief of Where Women Create and Where Women Cook, Nancy and Jo recognized the need and desire in the marketplace to bring together creative women and women entrepreneurs at various stages to learn, connect, share, and engage in an inspirational yet attainable format and environment.

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Elaine Wu
BlogHer, Inc.
(650) 551-1364 x 245
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