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Mainstage Keynotes

Stefani Grant

Senior Manager of External Affairs and Sustainability | Unilever

Dr. Chika Stacy Oriuwa

Physician | Advocate for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in Healthcare

Frances Haugen

Data Engineer + Scientist | Advocate for accountability & transparency in social media

Selena Rezvani

Women’s Leadership Speaker | Culture Disruptor

Breakout Speakers

Breakout Sessions

In addition to the mainstage keynotes, four breakout session options will be offered.

Both virtual and in-person attendees will select the session of their choice for the 1 P.M. breakout time.

Recordings of all breakouts will be available for viewing post-conference during the on-demand access window.

Health Equity Conversations: Empowering Women’s Health in the Workplace

Panel Discussion Moderated by Josie Abboud of Methodist Hospital and Methodist Women’s Hospital

Brought to you by

President & CEO, Josie Abboud

Cardiothoracic surgeon HelenMari L. Merritt-Genore, DO
Breast Surgical Oncologist Lisa M. Poole, MD
Vice President of Human Resources Paula Pittman
– Bios below –

Medical science and patient care have historically focused on male patients. Gender bias creates dangers in medical treatment. In today’s increasingly transparent workplace, efforts to support women’s physical and mental health must grow and evolve alongside a company’s journey to gender equity. The natural first step is to break down the stigmas and biases surrounding women’s health while empowering women to advocate for ourselves and our unique needs. Our panel will encourage us all to take part in these bold conversations – with each other, our healthcare providers, and within our workplaces.

Moderator + Panelist Bios


Josie Abboud
Josie Abboud is president and CEO of Methodist Hospital and Methodist Women’s Hospital. She began her career at Methodist in 1996 as a critical care staff nurse and has held held a variety of leadership roles within the organization. She earned her bachelor’s degree in nursing at Creighton University and her master’s degree in business administration and health care management from Regis University in Denver. Josie is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives and a member of the Medical Group Management Association. She serves as Director at Large of the Nebraska Hospital Association. She serves on the boards of several organizations including the Nebraska Hospital Association, Hospice House, Creighton University, Creighton Prep, and Marian High School.

Dr. HelenMari Merritt-Genore

A board-certified cardiothoracic surgeon, Dr. Merritt-Genore completed her general surgery training at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio. It was there that she was recruited as the inaugural resident in the integrated cardiothoracic surgery residency program. Dr. Merritt-Genore, a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, is particularly interested in treating heart arrhythmias surgically, cardiac and thoracic tumor management, and utilizing minimally invasive surgical approaches whenever possible.

Dr. Lisa Poole
A board-certified breast surgeon, Dr. Poole graduated from the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine and completed her residency training at the University of Kansas School of Medicine. Her fellowship training was done at Bryn Mawr Hospital. Her interest in breast surgery developed while she was stationed at Offutt Air Force Base as a general surgeon. Dr. Poole treats a variety of breast conditions, including breast cancer and prevention, and is especially interested in the treatment of benign and malignant breast disease.

Paula Pittman
Paula Pittman is the vice president of human resources for Methodist Health System. Paula received her bachelor’s from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and her Juris Doctor from the Creighton University School of Law. She has an extensive background in human resources with proven strategic leadership experiences. Paula’s many years of experience afforded her the opportunity to effect change by aligning talent strategies with business plans, developing leaders and building organizational cultures marked by accountability.

Fast Fashion: What is it & Why should you care?

April Perrin | AP Styled

As part of our exploration of the bold conversation of sustainability practices at this year’s conference, April Perrin will be joining us for a session on all things fast fashion. “Fast Fashion is like fast food: after the sugar rush, it just leaves a bad taste in your mouth.”

Have you ever thought about why we can buy the latest fashions at such an affordable price? April Auger Perrin asks us to consider whether the value we save is worth the cost of producing fast fashion, and she urges us to strive to make our wardrobes match our moral values.

More about April:

April Perrin is on a mission to help consumers be more mindful about how and where they shop for clothing. 

Her career began as a public relations associate in the fashion industry when she contemplated the relationship between fashion and humanitarianism. This was well before the days of TOMS shoes or fashion brands tied to a social cause. She envisioned the fashion industry as an engine to empower people around the world and serve as a model to other industries for conducting business ethically. Following her stint in fashion, April spent 10 years working in the nonprofit sector training political and business leaders to use their resources and skills to work on social issues within the Commonwealth of Virginia. 

April has a Master’s Degree in Nonprofit Studies from the University of Richmond, where she wrote her thesis on fashion-related social entrepreneurship. In 2017, she launched All Awear as a culmination of her research, work in fashion, and nonprofit experience. All Awear is a social platform designed to inspire and connect consumers with ethical and sustainable fashion brands as well as educate them about the importance of conscious consumerism. She has been an invited speaker at numerous universities, community events, and media outlets. In 2018, she gave a TEDx talk called, “The Value of Fast Fashion.” April enjoys traveling internationally with her husband and two young sons.

Engaging Men as Allies: Moving from Awareness to Advocacy

Jeffery Tobias Halter

Are you and your male colleagues equipped with the skills needed to actively support the advancement of women leaders at all levels within your organization?

The 2022 McKinsey Women in the Workforce study found that only 14 percent of companies are doing Allyship training. Since men still represent 75 percent of leadership of the 423 companies McKinsey surveyed, it’s a given that we will never drive long-term systemic advancement for women without active male allyship. Simply put, until we engage more men in diversity and inclusion initiatives, the status quo will continue in the workplace. 

Engaging male allies is about proactive action. It’s a skill to be learned and honed in order to change the status quo and create inclusive work spaces. What is your company doing to engage men to create an inclusive workplace that supports gender equity? The workshop is designed to help attendees create a deeply internalized approach to gender equity, with a lens of intersectionality and a sense of urgency that will drive a competitive advantage in the workplace and marketplace. 

Jeffery’s workshop will: 

  1. Examine “The Future of Work” and the current challenges every company is facing in winning the war for talent.
  2. Explore the barriers that women are still facing and also the unique challenges faced by women of color. 
  3. Discuss in depth the four barriers and the solutions to active male advocacy. 
  4. Provide attendees with 10 Actions for Advocates, that they can implement in their workplaces immediately following the session.

This breakout session is targeted to both men and women who want to learn more about creating allies and advocates in their workplace.

More about Jeffery:

Jeffery Tobias Halter is a Consultant, Author, and Gender Strategist. He is the President of YWomen, a strategic consulting company focused on engaging men in women’s leadership advancement. YWomen focuses on driving actionable business plans and strategies to help organizations create Integrated Women’s Leadership Strategies. Jeffery is the former Director of Diversity Strategy for The Coca-Cola Company.

Jeffery is a two-time TEDx speaker and the author of two books including, WHY WOMEN, The Leadership Imperative to Advancing Women and Engaging Men. Jeffery’s full-day immersion program for men, Creating Gender Advocates has helped to create thousands of visible and vocal male allies in the workplace. In 2021 he launched the Creating Gender Advocates Virtual Program to provide organizations with 12 months of programming of allyship content and tools. 

His clients include IBM, Amazon, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Mercedes-Benz, Barclays, Caterpillar and dozens of other Fortune 500 companies.

Taking Bold Conversations to the Next Level: The Use of Social Media to Amplify Conversations, Make Connections & Increase Outcomes Around a Cause

Deanna Hizon | LinkedIn

Social media can be a tool for connection and change. Bringing real-world change thanks to online tools is not something new, but the pandemic has allowed us to rethink how we can use digital tools to share and rally people on social good or to amplify a cause. With a bit of creativity, social media can be useful beyond information. We can use it to get people talking, asking questions, and taking ownership of social causes. Deanna Hizon from Linkedin, will share how Linkedin can be a resource to you beyond simply building your profile!

More about Deanna:

Deanna Hizon has worked in tech for the last 4 years. She is currently the Head of Executive Escalations at LinkedIn, a company dedicated to providing every member of the global workforce with economic opportunity. Prior to finding her niche in tech, Deanna served honorably in the United States Marine Corps where she deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. After being honorably discharged in 2006, she began a career with the Department of Defense where she led several customer-facing teams for Camp Lejeune and later at the United States Strategic Command before leaving to join LinkedIn. She is an avid supporter of women in tech and mentors several up and coming women leaders at LinkedIn.

Special Entertainment

Jewel Rodgers

Interdisciplinary Poet, Performer, & Visual Artist

JaVonne Jones

Electric Violinist