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From Home Furnishing Business

WithIt’s 'Igniting Leadership' Conference Open for Registration

WithIt, the women’s leadership development network for the home and furnishings industry, recently announced its 2019 Annual Professional Conference -- a three-day program, June 24-26, 2019, at a new location at The Westin in Alexandria, Virginia. The conference themed “Igniting Leadership” will feature six keynote presentations, three preconference workshops and nine breakout session options.

Registration is open at, with early bird registration offered at $100 discount until May 15.

The conference is led by WithIt’s 2019 Professional Conference Co-Chairs, Alexis Koscielny of The Dufresne Group and Cathy Valent of CeCe Designs. “This year’s conference features a stellar lineup of speakers on a variety of topics for all levels and segments of professionals in our industry,” stated Alexis Koscielny. “With topics ranging from Leadership to Retail Strategies and Financial well-being, attendees are in for an inspiring conference” added Cathy Valent.

Monday’s offerings includes preconference workshop add-ons for “VisionSPARK” by Rosie Molinary and “Strengths Finders” by Lorri Kelley, followed by a free Women’s Health and Wellness Workshop by City of Hope, General Membership Meeting, Opening Reception and Networking Dine-around Dinners.

Tuesday kicks off with Denise Ryan’s “Setting Your Followers on Fire”, a keynote on proven leadership traits and motivating employees and improving leadership techniques. Following the keynote, Ashley Feinstein Gerstley will be speaking on “We Need Women to Be Wealthy” and Nicole Leinbach Reyhle of Retail Minded covering "The Path to Purchase: Understanding the Realities, Resources & Revenue Opportunities Based on How Consumers Really Shop".

Tuesday afternoon includes nine breakout session options for attendees to select three to participate in:

  • 7 Steps to Financial Well-being
  • Drive Results by Strengthening Your Organization from the Inside Out
  • Capturing Lightening in a Jar: How to make your iPhone, camera and videos shine
  • You're Talking, But Why Should We Listen: A discussion on your marketing content approach and audience engagement.
  • Creative Solutions To Solve Problems
  • The Red Carpet Treatment: A 3 Step Guide to Employee Training for Stronger Customer Service Experiences & Sales
  • Public Speaking, Presentations and Media Interviews: How to Overcome Your Fears, Enhance Your Skills and Get Better Press
  • Licensing: Turning Furniture Designs, Brands and other Intellectual Property into Profits
  • Malouf - OnWatch Training

Tuesday evening concludes with a cocktail reception and dinner.

Wednesday morning covers “Women’s Wellness” by City of Hope, “Relationships are Everything” by Joan Kuhl and “The Essential Steps to Becoming An Effective Leader” by Lorri Kelley.  The conference closes around Noon with a final panel on “Igniting your Action Plan” with conference participants.

“The Conference Committees have done an outstanding job at creating another great conference lineup and experience for our attendees. We outgrew our last venue in Charleston and are thrilled to be hosting this year’s event in the DC area. The Westin in Alexandria Old Town is a beautiful, walkable area with restaurants, shops and riverfront for guests to enjoy,” says Amy Van Dorp, WithIt’s executive director.

Tickets are available for purchase online at Early bird registration is offered at $100 discount through May 15, 2019. Tickets can be purchased for $475 for WithIt members, $650 for non-members, and $175 for full-time students.

Pre-conference workshops and sessions with a professional coach are available for $50. Professional headshots will also be offered during the conference for $125.  For professionals considering joining the organization to receive the best rate, prorated membership is available for $170.

Sponsors of the Conference include Ekornes, Malouf, MicroD, The Tombras Group, AmericasMart Atlanta, Universal Furniture, A.R.T. Furniture, J.B.Hunt/Cory, Myriad Software, Furnitureland South, Storis, ecUtopia, LaZBoy, Fairfield, Michael Amini, American Leather and Havertys.

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