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Women Mean Business at Forum

March 12, 2003 — Four of the top business women in Utah will speak at the Women’s Business Forum Friday, March 14, 7:30 a.m. at the Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce. The David Eccles School of Business is sponsoring the event and Dean Jack Brittain will moderate. Tickets are available by calling 587-8622.

The forum is designed to give women information about the benefits of earning an MBA from working professionals who will give their views on the topic. The featured speakers will talk about the value of a business education and how that relates to women succeeding in business. An informal discussion will follow the formal presentation.

The featured speakers for the Women’s Business Forum include Teresa Beck, former president of American Stores, Patricia Richards, senior V.P. and director of Endowment & Foundation Markets, Wells Fargo, Karen Shepherd, director of Majority Council, Emily’s List, and Christine Watson, energy engineer, Utah Energy Office. While all four women took different paths to reach the goals they set for themselves, they all agree that a business education played a critical role in achieving success.

Teresa Beck received her bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Utah. She was motivated to receive her MBA in order to be promoted at American Stores Company where she worked in various positions since being hired in 1982. Teresa started working at American Stores as a special projects account manager and quickly moved up to positions such as vice president/controller, corporate controller, senior vice president of finance, executive vice president of administration, and ultimately president of the company.

Patricia Richards started her career in banking with First Security Bank after getting a B.A. in Economics from Northwestern University and doing some graduate work at the University of Utah. She now serves as the senior V.P. and director of Endowment & Foundation Markets, Wells Fargo. Patricia feels the graduate courses she took in Marketing and Communications were most beneficial to her success. She has served on many boards such as the United Way, University Hospital Foundation Board, and International Women’s Forum; and was chair of the Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce.

Christine Watson is an energy engineer at the Utah Energy Office. She says her education in business principles helped her get where she is today. She started her career as a program coordinator after graduating with a B.E. in Civil and Environmental Engineering. Christine says having an MBA has helped her receive job offers that she might not have gotten without the degree. Besides work as an engineer, she has been a mathematics teacher and a consultant.

Karen Shepherd is the western director for Emily’s List, an organization that supports Democratic women running for governor, the U.S. House and the U.S. Senate. She is a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives and also the Utah Senate. Karen’s foundation in business has helped her in politics. From 1996 to 2002 she represented the U.S. as Director for the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).