2020 Engaging Women Conference Virtual Summit

Featuring Valorie Burton and Jillian Speece 

Recharge, be inspired, connect with forward-thinking women and empower the next generation of women in business. Proceeds from the summit help fund Saint Mary’s College’s SPARK program – designed to help launch innovative women into successful careers in business. 

The Engaging Women Conference is the signature fundraiser for the Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative (WEI) and supports year-round programming aimed at women’s economic empowerment through business ownership and career advancement. Our SPARK Women’s Business Accelerator, serving women of diverse socio-economic backgrounds, has graduated 240 participants and helped launch over 90 businesses.

Opening Speaker  Valorie Burton

June 5 — 1:20 PM

Valorie Burton is a life coach, author, motivational speaker and entrepreneur. She is the founder of the Coaching and Positive Psychology Institute. Burton has been featured on the TODAY Show and the Dr. Oz Show and has made regular appearances on CNN and HLN.  Valorie has published twelve books.

Valorie Burton Sitting

Closing Speaker

Jillian Speece

June 5 — 3:45 PM

Jillian Speece is a singer-songwriter, entrepreneur and activist in the Brooklyn-based band The Bergamot. She is the founder of Wild Wondrous Women, a community devoted to encouraging and helping women to live their best life. Speece has been seen in People Magazine, Women’s Day, and USA Today. Her catchphrase is Shine ON as a reminder to all that they are made of light and love.

About The Summit

The Engaging Women Conference has invigorated thousands of women to date, and this year’s virtual summit offers attendees a robust and energizing itinerary centered on opportunity, resilience, and connection with big registration benefits.



1:00pm – 1:15pm  Welcome and Opening

1:15pm – 1:45pm Keynote Address: Valorie Burton “Successful Women Think Differently”

1:45pm – 2:30pm Resilience Session # 1 

Facilitator: Hailey Thomas, Brain Space Optimized

Becky Lindstrom, Ever Present Life & Saint Mary’s College

Rachel (Torres) Bell ‘98, RVB Group

Bethany Hartley, South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership

2:30pm – 2:45pm Break for movement and stretching with Bridget Hardy

2:45pm – 3:30pm Opportunity Session #2 

Facilitator: Dana Strait, VP for Strategy and Finance at Saint Mary’s College

Clare Carragher ‘20, Saint Mary’s College, Dance Marathon 

Kathy Burnette, SPARK ‘17, Brain Lair Bookstore 

Saira Malik Rahman, MD, South Bend Clinic

3:30pm – 3:45pm Break for movement and stretching

3:45pm – 4:15pm Keynote Address: Jillian SpeeceYou Were Made for This Moment” 

4:15pm-4:20pm Closing

4:20pm-5:00pm Networking Happy Hour


WEI and Saint Mary’s College’s virtual conference for alumnae, students, women business owners and professionals focused on the three pillars of opportunity, resilience, and connection. 


Friday, June 5th | 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.


Right here on this online platform! 

Who should attend?

Saint Mary’s alumnae and students, small business owners, solopreneurs, young professionals, and women transitioning in or out of the workforce. 

What to expect

Our carefully curated keynote speakers, interactive breakout sessions, and networking opportunities are focused on three pillars: opportunity, resilience and connection ensure an outstanding experience.



Registration Benefits

Help a Saint Mary’s student or grad with our BOGO option that provides scholarships to SMC students and graduates of the SPARK women’s business accelerator.

Support business training for women entrepreneurs in the greater South Bend-Elkhart region and student innovation and entrepreneurship at Saint Mary’s College.  All summit revenue supports this mission! 

WHO SHOULD ATTEND: Small business owners, solopreneurs, career professionals, Saint Mary’s seniors and other young professionals, and women transitioning in or out of the workforce. 

WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT: Our carefully curated speakers and interactive chats focus on three pillars: opportunity, resilience and connection. We also know that virtual events can be physically and emotionally taxing which is why the Engaging Women Virtual Summit has been intentionally designed to include opportunities to move, stretch, and take care of your well-being. An online networking happy-hour ensures connection with other career professionals. 


  • How to innovate and identify opportunities in times of great challenge. 
  • How to pivot career and business strategies.


  • Connect with a community of dynamic women committed to excellence and continuous improvement in their companies and communities and develop new relationships in a virtual environment.


  • How to overcome roadblocks, setbacks, or failures and increase resilience and creative problem-solving.

  • Inspiration and insight to achieve personal and professional fulfillment and strategies to practice self-care and promote well-being during crisis.

Your Ticket Supports a SPARK 

Women in business often find themselves on an uphill battle. The Engaging Women Conference revenue supports business training for women entrepreneurs in the greater South Bend-Elkhart region and student innovation and entrepreneurship at Saint Mary’s College.  

Our Sponsors

South Bend Elkhart Regional Partnership Logo
Momentum Marketing Logo