Conference Speakers

Anna Nichols

“Take The Leap” Keynote Speaker

Anna is the founder of Discovery Leadership LLC, a personal and professional development company with the mission of helping people become empowered leaders who act confidently and speak courageously while making a positive impact in their lives, businesses, community, and the world. She is a Certified Coach specializing in Subconscious Transformation and has a Master’s Degree in Business Administration. Today she applies her experience and expertise as an entrepreneur, coach, and speaker while also serving on several community boards. Most importantly, Anna is a woman who had a big dream, took a leap of faith to make it a reality, and is committed to helping others have the confidence to do the same. 

 

Stephani Price 

Breakout Session: Personal Growth & Mindset

Stephani has 20 years of experience in leadership and personal development. She has her MA in counseling and educational psychology and is an avid reader and podcast junkie. For the last 11 years she has built a global social marketing company to the top 2% while also being a busy mom and an active part of her community. Prior to that she had a thriving career in higher education doing marketing, event planning, advising and recruiting. She loves to teach others how to communicate, network, market and sell in more effective ways and she is passionate about helping people create a growth mindset. You can often find her skiing, mountain biking, camping, travelling or spending time with her beautiful little girls and amazing husband.

 

Liz Rook

Breakout Session: Creating Balance in a Busy Life

Liz Rook, DO, MPH, MA is the owner of Thrive Arena Life Coaching and rheumatology physician. She is passionate about empowering women to thrive by helping create healthy habits that build trust, self-love, and confidence while developing emotional awareness and releasing stress. She teaches mindset and strategy skills and blends them both up with joy and celebration to inspire women to grow and have fun on their success journey. She truly believes we all have untapped wisdom within ourselves that is harvested through our experiences. Liz is like a peppy and deeply compassionate personal trainer for thoughts, habits, and emotions. 

Her passion was born out of 30+ year journey of overeating and avoiding conflict to cope with worry, anxiety, and her prior persona as a type-A perfectionistic people-pleaser. She now has grown into a deeply imperfect bold leader who connects with joy, humor, and listening. She has free resources for women on thrivearena.com, her podcast “Reclaim Your Brain” and also does free personal consultations to increase awareness and inspire change in women looking to free themselves from society’s expectations and reclaim their badassery in business, health and life.  

Dusti Reimer

Breakout Session: Who Told You, You Were Naked?

Dusti Reimer is the owner of Elevate PR & Marketing. She is married to her high school sweetheart and has three children. When she has free time she can be found running marathons and dreaming of fun places to travel. She enjoys coffee, tea, and the finer things in life. If you’re looking to watch an interesting challenge-take her to an all you can eat sushi buffet and prepare to be amazed. A deep connecting conversation and a good belly laugh are what keeps her going. Her sense of humor is all over the place, but joy is a major driver for her life. She could literally live in a Hallmark Christmas movie. For fun (and of course purpose) Dusti founded the Experience Education Foundation, a non-profit that hosts the Initiate Conference, to bring professional education to those in marketing and communications on the Western Slope. She loves to encourage people and see people step into the path that was created for them. She likes being herself.

 

 Selena Sanchez 

Breakout Session: Marketing Yourself

Selena is a Grand Junction native and Colorado Mesa University alumni who is passionate about using the power of marketing and communication to build community. 

She is a versatile and creative marketing professional with experience in nonprofit management, event planning, and fundraising. As the Director of Marketing and Communications for the Grand Junction Economic Partnership, Selena is responsible for developing and executing digital, social, and web-based marketing strategies and campaigns to attract prospective businesses, showcase the Grand Junction area, and engage business leaders throughout our community. 

Selena is also the owner of Selena R.S. Studio, a small business that houses her creative ventures and passion projects. Through her business, Selena shares her carefully crafted jewelry and original artwork to spread positivity and connect with the community at local markets.

 

Kristin Donahue

Breakout Session: Networking Like a Boss

Kristin Donahue is an entrepreneur, business coach, and champion of growth and success for women! She worked in Human Resources for hospitals before starting her own HR consulting business where she helped companies create cultures to engage and retain employees. Currently, she leads a large team of skincare and haircare consultants in the US, Canada, and Australia. Most recently, she has added business development for BossLady Bio, a social marketing company, to her resume. Kristin will be speaking on networking your way to success. She will share tips on how to handle awkward situations, where to find “your people” and how to turn an acquaintance into a connection that benefits everyone involved. If you’ve ever wished you felt more comfortable networking, this session is for you! Kristin is excited to be speaking because she knows that strong women build strong communities and she wants to help you TAKE THE LEAP into leveling up your networking prowess.

 

Angie Wickersham

Breakout Session: Growing into a Strong Leader

Angie Wickersham is the co-owner of Mountain Berry Bowls Fruita and Grand Junction with her husband. She also has the privilege to support adult survivors of brain injury at Hilltop in her role as Director of the Life Adjustment Program. She is a Mesa State and CSU grad with a master’s degree in Social Work. Her and her husband have two amazing and always busy kids aged 11 and 13. They love everything about living and raising a family in Fruita. She is all about growing our next leaders, so she is excited to share a session on “Becoming A Strong Leader”. She can’t wait to be surrounded by amazing and powerful women learning and growing together in March! 

 

Tawny Espinoza  

Breakout Session: Ability to See Beyond the ‘No’

Tawny Espinoza is the Vice President of Business Development at Community Hospital in Grand Junction, CO. She has worked for Community Hospital for 11.5 years, and has been in her current rold for the last six. During her tenure, she has served local employer groups managing their clinic/narrow network agreements and wellness programs. For the past five years, she has been working to build an onsite childcare center, which will open in the summer of 2023. 

She has a bachelor’s degree in Human Performance and Wellness, with concentrations in both Exercise Science and Corporate Fitness, and a master’s degree in Business Administration. She was a fellow of the Ball State University/Florida State University Social Marketing program, a graduate of the Denver University Regional Institute for Health and Environmental Leadership, and a CiviCO Leadership Academy graduate. She teaches as an adjunct faculty member in the Kinesiology Department at Colorado Mesa University. Tawny served two terms on the Grand Junction Parks and Recreation Advisory Board, three terms on the Colorado Mesa University Alumni Board, is the Past Chair for the Greater Grand Junction Sports Commission, and the Past Chair for the Strive Board. She also participates on a number of other local coalitions and committees. 

 

Cameron Cunningham

Breakout Session: Casting a Big Vision

Cameron is originally from Wisconsin but has recently made her self at home in Grand Junction, Colorado. With a Bachelors in kinesiology and as a certified Strength and Conditioning Exercises Specialist she has been teaching fitness since 2015 and dance since 2008.

Since 2013 Cameron has trained in a variety of styles including, ballet, modern, flamenco, jazz, tap, hip hop and ballroom with Minnesota Conservatory of the Arts, Minnesota Ballet, Estudio Danza (Spain) and Colorado Mesa University. Cameron has performed in a film, a music video, and in faculty and student dance concerts at Colorado Mesa University. Cameron has choreographed for several student productions at CMU as well as having work presented in the faculty dance concert.

Cameron has been on five medical mission trips to the Dominican Republic and was a part time missionary in Spain for four months. She most recently started a dance program in Uganda Africa with Father to the Fatherless Ministries and began a series of international dance missions. Cameron has experience teaching and working with dancers of all backgrounds, demographics and abilities. She continues to pursue God’s calling on her life through the performing arts and by mentoring women. Cameron founded Reverent Rhythms in 2018 and continues to train the professional company, choreograph and direct the professional productions and oversee all business and ministry operations of Reverent Rhythms. 

Sadye Saad

Breakout Session: Community. Connection. Courage. Culture

A proud local native of the Grand Valley, Sadye Saad has worked for 20 years as a marketing, public relations, and events professional on both the Western Slope and the Front Range. As a Little MAV and Grand Junction High School Tiger, she went on to study at Mesa State College after graduation. After graduating from the University of Northern Colorado with a degree in Mass Communications, she began working in the Denver area. Managing a wide array of large-scale events, she had the opportunity to work with the Colorado Crush, Denver Polo Club, Dunafon Castle, PGA Tour at the Broadmoor, 5280 Magazine, and many more. Sadye continued to expand her vast array of experience by working with local nonprofits and small businesses. In 2018, she began working as the Marketing Coordinator for the Fruita Area Chamber of Commerce, focusing on working with local business owners and building community connections. Sadye planned and executed large-scale events such as the Fruita Fall Festival, FACC Annual Banquet, as well as many other events. Then in 2019, Sadye took the position as the Marketing & Communication Specialist at Timberline Bank. Building a Marketing Department from the ground up, she created a strong brand and developed effective marketing campaigns, spearheaded campaigns, and implemented new initiatives to support community organizations, businesses, non-profits, and community members.

In 2022, Sadye continued to focus her efforts on community connections as the Director of Career Services at Colorado Mesa University. Her passion to make a positive and long-standing impact on the community that she knows and loves, was best felt by connecting outstanding professionals into our local workforce.