Friday - September 29, 2023
8:30 am – 12:00 pm

“Communicating with Confidence” is the theme of the Women Elected Municipal Officials’ fifth annual leadership conference, to be held on Friday, Sept. 29, in Marlborough.

The keynote speaker will be former Acting Governor Jane Swift. In 2001, Swift became the first woman to serve as governor in Massachusetts. Today, she works as an advocate for women’s leadership in education and leads the Cobble Hill Farm Education & Rescue Center.

The keynote address will be followed by two workshops on communication knowledge and skills-building, led by Cally Ritter, principal of Positive Ripple Training and Consulting, and Katie Gilfeather, an employee assistance program clinician with AllOne Health. The conference will also provide opportunities for peer networking and discussion.

Registration and networking will begin at 8:30 a.m. The program will start at 9 a.m. and conclude at noon, followed by a networking lunch.

The conference will be held at the Courtyard Marriott, 75 Felton St. in Marlborough. The cost is $45.

Additional information, including a full agenda, will be available in the coming weeks.


8:30 a.m.
Networking Breakfast and Registration

9 a.m.
Welcoming Remarks

9:15 a.m.
Keynote Address
Speaker: Former Acting Governor Jane Swift

10 a.m.
Responding with Our Emotional Intelligence: Leveraging Social/Emotional Skills in Tough Conversations
Presenter: Cally Ritter, Principal, Positive Ripple Training and Consulting
Emotional Intelligence. Maybe you’ve heard of it or maybe you’ve studied it, but without a doubt you have it. Cally will lead an interactive exploration of the five components of emotional intelligence (EI): emotional awareness, emotional regulations, motivation, social skills, and empathy. Together, we’ll examine:
• How our EI shows up in tough conversations with stakeholders
• How to grow our social/emotional skills
• How to apply these skills to best serve our constituents and navigate our relationships with colleagues

11 a.m.

11:10 a.m.
Navigating Difficult Encounters for Women Elected Municipal Officials
Presenter: Katie Gilfeather, EAP Clinician, AllOne Health
Women leaders face specific challenges navigating conflict, while also dealing with our own and others’ perceptions and beliefs about what it means to be a powerful woman. We admire women who appear confident and seem unshakable. But are they as confident as they seem? Or have they mastered the art of appearing confident even in the face of self-doubt? This workshop will cover:
• Is confidence overrated? Can we be effective communicators even if we don’t feel confident?
• Four common traps that women experience in the face of conflict and how to recognize and move beyond them.
• Strategies for handling incivility with grace.
• Creating your message through connecting to your core values as a leader.

12 p.m.
Closing Remarks
Beth Casavant, WEMO Chair, Select Board Member, Shrewsbury

12:05 p.m.
Wrap-up and Lunch
There will be boxed lunches available to take to go or to eat on-site.

Courtyard Marriott, Marlborough

MMA Member Program Coordinator Anneke Craig,
Women Elected Municipal Officials