Senator Leahy’s 21st Annual Women's Economic Opportunity Conference (WEOC), was held Saturday, September 16, 2017, at Vermont Technical College in Randolph.
The conference continued a long tradition of bringing women together for a day of personal and professional growth, with exciting new offerings that the new partnership with Change The Story VT provided. The partnership between WEOC and Change The Story was critical to effectively promote opportunities that will help advance economic goals and strategic thinking.
Mary Alice McKenzie’s keynote address, drawing from her experiences as a young lawyer and emphasizing the importance of education, was inspiring and enlightening. Mary Alice served for a decade as the director of the Boys & Girls Club of Burlington, where she worked tirelessly to help young women and men aim high and achieve their goals. Mary Alice’s work with the Boys & Girls Club has literally changed lives with initiatives such as the Early Promise program.
Early in 2017, Marcelle and Senator Leahy met and marched with hundreds of Vermont women – and many men – who traveled to Washington to take part in the Women’s March. Amid the sea of pink hats that dominated the crowd, one message resonated: We cannot turn back the clock. In 2017, women are still fighting for fairness and equality related to health care access, pay equity, corporate leadership and workplace accommodation. The conference was launched more than 20 years ago to help address these challenges.