University of Wisconsin-River Falls

News Source

Oct. 24, 2003

UW-RF Faculty/Staff Attend Women's Conference

More than 120 women leaders from public and private colleges and universities across the state gathered at the Ho-Chunk Convention Center Oct. 16-17 to share strategies for women's advancement.

Attending the two-day conference from UW-River Falls were Linda Alvarez, multicultural services adviser; Carolyn Brady, multicultural outreach specialist; Ginny Coombs, provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs; Mary Halada, assistant to the vice chancellor of administration and finance; Lisa Kroutil, associate professor of chemistry; Kelly Manthei, student support services adviser; and Barbara Werner, coordinator of women's studies and chair of the speech communications and theater arts department.

Lt. Gov. Barbara Lawton shared her vision of moving Wisconsin forward with women as leaders. Her state-wide effort, titled "Wisconsin Women=Prosperity," depends on dedicated participation of higher education leaders so that all Wisconsin women can achieve economic sufficiency, political participation, high educational goals, health and well-being.

"When women thrive, Wisconsin thrives!" Lawton said.

Opening keynote speaker Pat Alea, an expert on career planning, suggested techniques for making important changes by focusing on goals, clear communication, a starting point, steady aim and the courage to move forward with power and support.

The conference also included seminars on topics such as making a difference in legislative policies, mentoring, career development, steps toward academic leadership and changes, conflicts and challenges for women at work.

A panel of female leaders in education shared their experiences in advancing to positions of authority. Participants met women from distant areas working on similar projects and to set up statewide networks.

Since 1997, Wisconsin Women in Higher Education Learning has had a mission to identify future women leaders, provide contacts and support for women moving into leadership positions, eliminate barriers to women's advancement and to increase the visibility of women leaders.

Through affiliation with the Office of Women in Higher Education at the American Council on Education in Washington, D.C., WWHEL hopes to increase the number and power of women in Wisconsin higher education.

The Madison Area Technical College and Southwest Technical College in Fennimore organized this year's conference. For more information, contact Rosemary Keefe, WWHEL Communications Chair, UW-Superior, at 715/394-8481 or


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