4th Annual Conference

Gustavus Women in Leadership

April 10, 2014

"Leadership for the Greater Good: How Talented Women Thrive"

American Swedish Institute

Early Bird Ticket Price (ends March 10, 2014)
General Public: $75
Recent Grad (2008-2013): $35

Regular Ticket Price
General Public: $100
Recent Grad: $75
Gustavus Student: $25

Please consider helping to defray the cost for a Gustavus student when purchasing your conference ticket.

Registration closes April 1, 2014


Keynote Speakers

Sarah Cuthill '85 - Principal, Deloitte Tax-Global Employer Services

Sarah Cuthill '85

Sarah is the National Service Line Leader for Global Employer Services (GES).  In this role, Sarah oversees 1,300+ professionals serving clients to address the strategic issues they face in the areas of global mobility, talent and rewards. Sarah has been working in the areas of global mobility and talent for more than 25 years. She recently served a 3-year term as the co-sponsor of the Global Employer Net|Work, a ground breaking Deloitte initiative to establish a private online client community for mobility, tax, rewards and talent professionals.


Margaret Anderson Kelliher '90 - President & CEO, Minnesota High Tech Association

Margaret Anderson Kelliher

Margaret Anderson Kelliher is the President and CEO of the Minnesota High Tech Association (MHTA). Together with the associations 350 member companies and organizations, Margaret works to fuel Minnesota’s prosperity through innovation and technology. Prior to MHTA, Margaret served in the Minnesota legislature, including two terms as Speaker of the Minnesota House of Representatives. Margaret graduated with a B.A. in Political Science from Gustavus Adolphus College. She earned her Master’s in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. In addition to her role at MHTA, Margaret is a member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) Board of Trustees, she chairs Governor Dayton’s Broadband Task Force, as well as teaches at the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School of Public Affairs. She also serves on the Board of Directors for the YWCA of Minneapolis, the Greater Twin Cities United Way and Textile Center of Minneapolis.


Breakout Sessions

Grayce Belvedere-Young - Founder & CEO of Lily Pad Consulting

Grace Belvedere-YoungGrayce is the Founder and CEO of Lily Pad Consulting. She brings twenty-five years of organization development and strategic planning expertise in numerous industries as well as the nonprofit world. She specializes in strategy and visioning; board governance; change management; leadership development; performance management; talent management and succession planning; team effectiveness; and culture revitalization. Grayce partners with leaders to ensure alignment around vision and strategy, drive implementation, and coach and develop talent. Grayce is active in the Minneapolis / St. Paul community.


Mary Brainerd - President & CEO, Health Partners

Mary Brainerd

Mary Brainerd is president and chief executive officer for Minnesota-based HealthPartners, the largest, consumer-governed, nonprofit health care organization in the nation. Under her leadership and direction, HealthPartners has experienced record growth and is recognized as a national leader in the health care industry. In addition, Brainerd is often cited for her strong business acumen and unwavering commitment to the community. Honors include: Top 75 Most Influential People in the Twin Cities (2013) by Minnesota Monthly, the Caux Roundtable Award for outstanding citizenship (2012), induction into the Twin Cities Business Hall of Fame (2011), induction into the Junior Achievement of the Upper Midwest’s Business Hall of Fame (2010) by the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal; Executive of the Year from the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal; and the University of St. Thomas Award for Ethical Leadership.


Karen Cowart - Director of Community and Public Affairs, BP

Karen Cowart

Karen Cowart is director of BP Alaska’s community affairs. Her position allows her to work with over 400 charitable organizations throughout Alaska, and is responsible for the development and execution of BP Alaska’s community strategy which includes the management of the BP Energy Center. She also serves as a member of the Alaska Response Team, Command Staff as Liaison Officer. In 1976, Karen and husband Rob moved to Adak, Alaska in 1976 while Rob was in the U.S. Navy.

After moving to mainland Alaska in 1980, Karen held positions in tourism, serving as the executive director of the Valdez Convention & Visitors Bureau and the Alaska Visitors Association (now known as the Alaska Tourism Industry Association). She became general manager of the Alaska Support Industry Alliance in 1996, and was hired by BP in 2000. Karen currently serves on the Foraker Operations Board and the Alaska Resource Education Board, Hospice of Anchorage and is a past member of the Alaska Republican Party Executive Committee, Resource Development Council and the Arctic Power Board. She also is active in her church and partners with her husband to lead a financial class called Financial Peace University.


Patricia Mitchell - President & CEO, Ordway Center for the Performing Arts

Patricia Mitchell

Patricia Mitchell joined Ordway Center for the Performing Arts as President and CEO in August 2007. Mitchell began her career as Director of Community Services for The Guthrie Theater, and then joined Minneapolis-based Arts Development Associates, a national consulting firm providing services in research, planning, program development, and marketing to artists, arts organizations, and cultural agencies. She served as Executive Director of San Francisco Opera, and subsequently for Los Angeles Opera. In 2000, she was named Chief Operating Officer of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, where she oversaw Marketing & Communications, Finance & Administration, Education, and Government Relations. In addition, she was responsible for overall management and supervision of the Hollywood Bowl, an 18,000 seat outdoor amphitheater featuring a wide variety of classical, popular, jazz, and world music events each summer. She also managed a construction project resulting in a new $25M shell for the Hollywood Bowl. Mitchell currently serves on the Cultural STAR Board and RiverCenter Convention and Visitors Authority Board.


Nikki Sorum - Divisional Vice President, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans

Nikki Sorum

Nikki Sorum leads the Midwest Division of Thrivent Financial, which includes approximately 800 financial representatives across 7 regional financial offices, as well as the Financial Advice Center, Thrivent’s direct sales channel. Nikki joined Thrivent in 2002 and has worked in a variety of roles including strategic planning, marketing and investment products, as well as sales. Prior to joining Thrivent Financial, Nikki served as Senior Vice President for RBC Dain Rauscher and spent eight years as a consultant and partner with McKinsey & Co., working with financial institutions. Nikki is active in the community, and has served on the boards of the Minneapolis YWCA, the American College, the Guthrie Theatre, and the Greenspring Board, the for-profit division of Minnesota Public Radio. A native of Pelican Rapids, MN, Nikki received a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis in 1983. In 1987, she earned an MBA from Harvard Business School.


Conference Schedule

8:30-9:00 am
Check In & Registration

9:00-9:15 am
Welcome & Opening Remarks

9:15-10:00 am
Keynote: Sarah Cuthill '85

10:10-11:00 am
Break Out session #1

11:10-12:00 pm
Break Out session #2

12:10-12:50 pm
Lunch & Networking

12:50-1:35 pm
Keynote: Margaret Anderson Kelliher '90

1:35-2:30 pm
Closing Remarks