Wyoming women explore core values and civic engagement
“You don’t always have to be successful, just keep going in the right direction.”
Executive Speech Coach Deb Sofield heard an old preacher once say, “When you die there are two dates on your tombstone, the day you were born and the day you die, and in between those dates a dash tells the world how you lived your life.” In a speech to over 200 people at Leap into Leadership 2013, Sofield asked, “What are you doing in the dash?”
Now in it’s sixth year, Leap into Leadership aims to increase women’s leadership at all levels. At least six Leap into Leadership alumni were elected to local or state office in the 2012 elections, part of a 125% increase in the number of women on county commissions and a 15% increase in the number of women in the Wyoming legislature.
Leap into Leadership 2013 focused on the theme “We the People” to address core values, civic engagement and ethics with a program including keynote speaker Sofield as well as an ethics workshop from the University of Wyoming College of Business, a simulated congressional hearing by students participating in We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution Program and leadership development workshops.
“Attending Leap into Leadership… started me on my path to running for office and gave me some valuable insights into what it takes”
State Auditor Cynthia Cloud hosted participants for breakfast in her office in the state capitol, and former Auditor Rita Meyer spoke with participants about her path to leadership. “Look for where you want to go,” counseled Meyer, “You don’t always have to be successful, just keep going in the right direction.” Meyer, who is currently the Wyoming vice-president of Rocky Mountain Power, encouraged attendees to be the heroes of their own lives.“Attending Leap into Leadership… started me on my path to running for office and gave me some valuable insights into what it takes – and why women should do it,” said Natalia Duncan Macker of Jackson, “I started building my support system and have a greater understanding of the resources available to me.”
The Wyoming Women’s Legislative Caucus and Wyoming Women’s Foundation will host two Leap into Leadership workshops in May 2013, in Sheridan on May 21, and in Riverton on May 22. Founded in 2006, the bipartisan Wyoming Women’s Legislative Caucus is sponsored by The Equipoise Fund.