Prospective women entrepreneurs invited to workshop at Utah Valley University

University Marketing & Communications: Layton Shumway | 801-863-6863 |

Written by: Barbara Christiansen

No matter where a woman may be in her quest to run a small business, there will be something for her in “Creating and Growing Small Businesses as Women,” a workshop sponsored by Utah Valley University’s Utah Women & Leadership Project. It will be from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Jan. 24 in the Ragan Theatre in the University’s Sorensen Student Center.

Attendees may choose between three sessions: Aspiring Entrepreneurs, Start from Scratch: First Steps to Launch Your Business, and Growing Your Business as Women. All are invited to the keynote address, given by Julie de Azevedo Hanks, the founder of Wasatch Family Therapy, a licensed clinical social worker, author, blogger, local and national media contributor, and award-winning musician, singer and songwriter.

“The great thing is that no matter where you are — thinking about it, or ready to get your toes wet, or ready to take a dive — we have got something here for you,” said Bonnie Mortensen, coordinator for the Utah Women & Leadership Project.

Following Hanks’s keynote address, attendees may select a workshop that best fits their position. Aspiring Entrepreneurs is geared toward high school, college and other women with an interest in someday starting a business. The panel of presenters includes Hanks; Susan Peterson, mother of two and founder of Freshly Picked, now a multi-million dollar company that makes and sells baby moccasins; and Anne Avernig, co-founder and chief product officer at Sodalicious Inc. Susan Madsen of the UWLP will moderate the panel and entrepreneurship educator Arielle Newman will facilitate activities for the workshop.

Those who have solidified their ideas and are ready to launch a business will want to attend the session with Ann Marie Wallace and Deb Bilbao, executive director and business consultant of the Women’s Business Center, respectively. The pair has helped women launch more than 200 new businesses in the last three years. Attendees will learn to identify if their business idea has potential for success, receive help to prepare a plan of attack, and take their first step.

If women have already started a business, but want help to grow it, they may attend the workshop with Camille Pendleton, director of the Small Business Development Center in Utah and Wasatch Counties; Donna Milakovic, regional outreach director of Utah Science Technology and Research agency; and Winthrop Jeanfreau, director of the Central Utah Business Resource Center hosted by UVU.

Attendance at the keynote and workshops is free, but space is limited. For additional information or to register, visit

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