Speakers Finalized for Women In Optometry’s Women’s Leadership Conference, Registration Still Open for Oct. 13-15 Virtual Event

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NEW YORK—Women In Optometry announced its full lineup of speakers for its upcoming Women’s Leadership Conference to be held Oct. 13-15 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. EST as a part of the American Academy of Optometry’s 2020 Academy at Home program. Optometrists from across the country will address important issues facing the profession and optometry careers today.
Tuesday, Oct. 13
The program kicks off with keynote speaker Shemeka Brathwaite with a high energy discussion on a passionate, inspired workforce and how it begins with you: the leader. Learn to go from worried, overwhelmed and worn out to a “W.O.W. factor” that exceeds service expectations. Brathwaite specializes in training professional women on how to achieve peak performance, so they can have an energized executive presence and deliver impact. Melissa Barnett, OD, FAAO, FSLS, FBCLA; Sherrol Reynolds, OD; and Sidra Qadri, OD, follow her presentation by applying her important message to the optometric profession.

  • Women In Optometry editor Marjolijn Bijlefeld will moderate a discussion on the workplace and demographics update with Stacy Lyons, OD; Ray Corbin-Simon, OD;and Diane Russo, OD, MPH, FAAO.

 Wednesday, Oct. 14

  • What Are You Worth?, a session on self-advocacy & negotiating, includes panelists Hardeep Kataria, OD, FAAOLeslie O’Dell, OD, FAAO; Dori Carlson, OD, FAAO; and Maria Sampalis, OD. 
  • Making the Undiscussable Discussable panelists Laurie Sorrenson, OD, FAAO; Selina McGee, OD, FAAO; Jenn Chinn, OD;and Ann Hoscheit, OD, FAARM, FAAO,examine what stops us from sharing our truth and how to become more constructively explicit.
  • Taking Care of You highlights several optometrists who share how they achieve their work/life balance. Hear from Elise Brisco, OD, FAAO, FCOVD, CCHNeda Gioia, OD, Samantha Hornberger, OD; Danielle Roth, ODLouise Sclafani, OD, FAAO;and Bridgitte Shen Lee, OD, FAAO, FBCLA, FEAOO.


Thursday, Oct. 15

  • Secrets of Our Success panelists Janelle Davison, OD; Kelly Nichols; OD, MPH, PhD, FAAO; Bridgitte Shen Lee, OD, FAAO, FBCLA, FEAOO;and Nikki Iravani, OD reveal what they found to be the most important skills when it came to advancing their careers.
  • Workplace Well-Being: Creating a Productive and Positive Culture discussion addresses how leaders and managers play a key role in creating a supportive and health-promoting work environment with panelists Tania Sobchuk, OD; Susan Lake, ODPaula Newsome, OD;and Brittani Carver-Schemper, OD.  
  • The 2020 Theia Awards of Excellence will conclude the evening's program with a special collaboration of past winners returning to honor the new recipients as they accept their awards in this fifth annual award ceremony. Women will be recognized for their outstanding contributions to the profession in the categories of leadership, mentoring, education, innovation and as a young OD.

Six additional doctors will  join the Leadership Conference agenda to share Quick Takes related to a number of topics from mentoring and adding an associate to medical eyecare and more: Camille Cohen, OD; Hannah Cho, OD; Monica Johnsonbaugh, ODPam Lowe, OD, FAAO; Brianna Rhue, OD, FAAOand Tammy Vo, OD. See these speakers and many others throughout the program in "Me Minute" segments.

If people are attending the 2020 Academy at Home , they can choose the 2020 Women’s Leadership Conference as one of their events when they register at AAO (7:00 - 9:00 p.m. EST October 13, 14 and 15) through this link here. If persons are not attending the 2020 Academy at Home, they can still register for the Women's Leadership Conference at no charge by clicking here.

Learn more about the program agenda here and speaker details here.