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University of Iowa News Release

Oct. 14, 2004

Women And Leadership Conference Oct. 23 At Tippie College Of Business

The graduate and undergraduate chapters of Women in Business at the Tippie College of Business have teamed up to present the fourth annual Women in Business Leadership Conference on Oct. 23.

Titled "Living the Life of a Leader: A Work in Progress," the conference, is from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Tenneco Colloquium, Room S401 of the John Pappajohn Business Building.

"The goal of our conference is to help women from different backgrounds, ages, experiences, and perspectives learn from one another and learn about themselves. Through networking, workshops and presentations by distinguished women, our conference gives all women the opportunity to make positive changes in themselves, both personally and professionally. Then, we inspire women to enact those changes," said Laura Klever, president of the Women in Business undergraduate chapter.

Several women business leaders are scheduled to speak, with their presentations covering topics such as career paths and job responsibilities. Amy Kristof-Brown, associate professor of management and organizations at the Tippie College, will lead a panel discussion on issues facing women in the workplace.

Afternoon speakers and their presentations are:

--"The People Make the Place." Chris Michel and Mary Weideman will explain how companies can get, and keep, the best employees while maintaining high legal and ethical standards. Michel is a human resource manager in the Department of Strategy and Development at Ford Motor Co. Her work with Ford has varied from a stint in a Budapest-based division to their Dearborn, Mich. headquarters. She received her bachelor of business degree from the Tippie College of Business in 1991 and her MBA from the Tippie School of Management in 1993. A partner at Weideman & Dilkes, Weideman is a Johnson County magistrate and teaches law and ethics in management in the Tippie College of Business.

--"Growing Pains" Karen Alber & Janelle Purdy will discuss the impact of corporate mergers and acquisitions on employees, and how they can manage change effectively in their organization and grow with their company. Alber is vice president, integration and change management at PepsiCo. From the Cedar Rapids Quaker Oats plant to the world headquarters in Chicago, Alber has been promoted numerous times within the Quaker Oats and PepsiCo organizations. She received her bachelor of business degree from the Tippie College of Business in 1986. Purdy is vice president of software development at Pearson plc. With more than 19 years of software experience, Purdy currently runs an organization of more than 250 software engineers, testers, and managers.

--"Living Your Dream" Sarah Grant-Hutchison, founder of Sticks, Inc., will talk about how she combined her artistic ability with her entrepreneurial instincts to form a highly successful company. Today, the company produces functional and artistic objects that are sold in 135 galleries nationwide.

The conference is sponsored by Tippie College Dean Gary Fethke and Professor Carol Fethke, Hills Bank and Trust Company, and the Undergraduate Program Office of the Tippie College.

The conference registration fee is $15 for students and $25 for non-students. Student scholarships are available. Registration and a complete conference schedule is available online at

For more information contact Laura Klever at

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

CONTACTS: Media: George McCrory, 319-384-0012,