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Cultivating Women Leaders: Embracing Our Inner Strength




Olivet College’s Cultivating Women Leaders is an annual event designed to inspire and equip young women to embrace their inner strength and realize their potential as responsible leaders.

The purpose of this year’s day-long program, scheduled for Friday, March 3, 2017, is to provide current and prospective students of the college the necessary tools and resources needed to establish them as leaders for today and the future.

The event will provide the opportunity for students to network and receive professional and personal development from Michigan’s finest women business leaders, as well as Olivet College’s most successful alumnae, as they learn how to overcome the obstacles and challenges that are ever present in today’s communities and workplace.


Please join us in creating a better future for our next generation of women leaders by supporting Olivet College and the inaugural Cultivating Women Leaders program entitled 
Embracing Our Inner Strength.




*For best results, view CWL pages on a desktop computer.

          Speaker Lineup          



Danielle Scott-Arruda  |  KEYNOTE SPEAKER

5 time Olympian, 2 time Silver Medalist | USA Volleyball

Danielle Scott-Arruda holds the record for five consecutive Olympic appearances from 1996-2012 as a U.S. Olympic Women’s Volleyball team player. In addition, she earned back-to-back silver medals in the 2008 Beijing and 2012 London Olympic Games. Read full bio here!



G. Asenath Andrews '72  |  "Olivet College Alumnae Panel"
Retired Founding Principal | Catherine Ferguson Academy

G. Asenath Andrews founded Catherine Ferguson Academy, an alternative public high school for teen mothers that also provides early education services for the children of the high school moms. Both middle and high school classes are held at the academy, which boasts a 90 percent graduation rate and was recognized as one of the 12 schools selected nationally as a Breakthrough High School by the National Association of Secondary Principals in 2004. Andrews has served as adjunct faculty at the University of Michigan and Madonna University and is also a research assistant at Moore & Associates Market Research Company.  

Andrews, though retired from the principal, is still actively involved in her profession and the community. She presently serves on the Board of Trustees of Olivet College and Olivet College Women's Leadership Initiative Advisory Council.

She is a founding member of the Detroit Professional Women’s Network, member of the National Committee to Prevent Teen Pregnancy Task Force.

Ms. Andrews has a bachelor’s degree from Olivet College, a master’s degree in education from Wayne State University and remains ABD in educational psychology from the University of Michigan.

Her newest professional endeavor is her work as Educational Specialist for Sphere Inc. Detroit. Sphere is a consulting and coaching firm. 



Paula D. Cunningham​  |  "Recognizing the Dynamic Leader Within"
State Director | AARP Michigan

Paula Cunningham has served as the chief executive officer and president of Capitol National Bank since October 2006.  Previously, Cunningham spent six years as the president of Lansing Community College, the first woman to hold that position. Also a 2013 inductee into the Michigan Women's Hall of Fame,Cunningham has been actively involved with various organizations and is a recognized leader. She has an enduring commitment to community and civic involvement and has dedicated her time on national, state, and local boards. 

Cunningham is the past chairperson of the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce and was the first minority female to serve in this position. Cunningham's service on boards includes Campaign Chair of the Capital Area United Way where she helped to raise almost $7 million dollars for local charities, in addition to service on numerous other boards. 



Deborah Davis  |  "Personal Financial Planning"
Vice President Commercial Loan Officer | Southern Michigan Bank & Trust

Deb Davis is a commercial lender at Southern Michigan Bank & Trust in Battle Creek. She is also a current board member of Summit Pointe in Battle Creek and a member and past-president of the Rotary Club of Battle Creek.

Davis holds a BA in business administration and economics from Spring Arbor College and a MBA from Western Michigan University.




Margaret Dimond, Ph.D.  |  "Recognizing the Dynamic Leader Within"
President and CEO | Crittenton Hospital Medical Center

Margaret Dimond, Ph.D., is president and CEO of Crittenton Hospital Medical Center in Rochester, Michigan, a 290-bed acute hospital and fully accredited teaching facility. Crittenton is a ministry of Ascension, the largest non-profit health system in the U.S. and the world’s largest Catholic health system.

Dimond is an accomplished and well-respected health care leader with extensive experience in acute care, ambulatory and physician group environments within leading health care systems throughout Southeast Michigan. An intuitive and dynamic leader, Dimond has achieved success in organizational integration with a focus on strategic growth as well as leading diverse stakeholders to common goals. She also regularly advocates for female leadership.

Dimond’s leadership extends beyond the walls of the hospital to several academic and community organization boards. A trustee of Olivet College, Dimond is also serving on the Olivet College Women's Leadership Advisory Council.



Tiffany Dowling ​ |  "Breaking the Stereotype"
President and CEO | M3 Group

Tiffany Dowling is president and CEO of M3 Group, a full-service branding agency that helps organizations of all sizes with marketing, public relations and advertising services. 

With a background in public relations and journalism, her career led her to Lansing-based biotech organization Neogen Corporation before becoming a public relations director at Starr Commonwealth. Dowling was then appointed by Gov. John Engler as the marketing and public relations director for the Michigan Department of Career Development where she managed multi-million dollar campaigns for the state.

Following her time in government, Dowling channeled her talents into starting and growing M3 Group, one of the largest and most respected agencies in mid-Michigan. In addition, Dowling is the publisher of three Lansing based magazines and wholeheartedly believes in giving back to the community. She is also serving on the Olivet College Women's Leadership Advisory Council.


"Eunice" Adeola​ Fayehun ‘07  |  "Olivet College Alumnae Panel"
Producer  |  SaharaTV

"Eunice" Adeola​​ Fayehun ’07 is a journalist who covers African politics and human rights violations on her weekly satirical show “Keeping It Real With Adeola.”

Originally from Nigeria, Fayehun is presently based in New York where she produces her weekly show for the online media platform, SaharaTV .

Fayehun has a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communication from Olivet College, and she earned her master’s degree in broadcast journalism from the City University of New York’s Graduate School of Journalism in 2008.



Tricia L. Foster  |  "Effective Communication Skills"
Retired Senior Managing Director and COO  |  CBRE Martin

As the retired Senior Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer for both CBRE|Martin and CBRE|Grand Rapids, Trish L. Foster oversaw approximately 70 professionals with assignments across the state, country and globe. Her comprehensive understanding of commercial real estate solutions developed over two decades.

Through a steadfast customer service approach, Foster and her leadership team focused on creating real estate and facilities solutions for a diverse client base by aligning each with best practices and professional talent to achieve superior results.

Foster strived to push the firm forward in areas of local philanthropy for community organizations and served as a mentor to all of those around her seeking professional and personal achievement.


Honorable Judge Denise Page Hood​  |  "Great I Graduated, Now What?!"
Chief Judge | United States District Court, Eastern District of Michigan

Denise Page Hood presently serves as United States District Judge for the Eastern District of Michigan. She was nominated by President Bill Clinton and confirmed by the Senate in 1994. She became Chief Judge of the Court on January 1, 2016.

Judge Hood also currently serves on the Criminal Pattern Jury Instructions Committee for the 6th Circuit and the Criminal Rules Advisory Committee of the United States Judicial Conference. She is the Chair of the U.S. District Court’s Pro Bono Committee, Co-chair of the Ad Hoc Jury Committee, and also serves on the Rules, Clerk’s Office and Criminal Law committees of the Court.

Judge Hood is a graduate of Yale University and Columbia University School of Law. She is married to the Reverend Dr. Nicholas Hood, III, senior minister of Plymouth United Church of Christ in Detroit; the couple has two sons. Additionally, Judge Hood is an Olivet College trustee and will serve on the Olivet College Women's Leadership Advisory Council.


Sarah Jennings, CPA, CFE  |  "Breaking the Stereotype"
Principal  |  Maner Costerisan

Sarah Jennings joined Maner Costerisan in 2003. She currently serves as a principal in the firm’s accounting and outsourced services department and also leads Maner Costerisan’s fraud and forensics practice..

 She has particular specialization performing fraud risk assessments and internal control process improvements for organizations across various industries. Jennings maintains a strong desire to help her clients augment their internal controls and fraud prevention systems, while minimizing their costs in the process. Beyond her client responsibilities at Maner Costerisan, Jennings regularly shares her expertise with colleagues and peers by speaking on industry related topics including fraud (risk areas and prevention) and ethics. 

Jennings also collaborated to found the ATHENA Women’s Interest Network in 2010, which promotes diversity in leadership by providing professional development opportunities, fostering mentorship and community relationships and connecting women to the ATHENA Leadership Model.  


Sheri Jones  |  "Effective Communication Skills"
News Anchor  |  WLNS TV 6 Lansing

Sheri Jones anchors the 6 and 11 o'clock news for WLNS TV 6 and leads its Crime Stoppers Program. Her weekly Crime Stoppers report has aided in the capture of many of Mid-Michigan's most wanted fugitive felons and earned many awards.

Jones was recently inducted into the Michigan Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Silver Circle in recognition of her dedication to excellence and the significant contributions she has made to the television industry over the past 25 years. Previously, Jones earned numerous awards for her dedication to community service, volunteer work, advocating for crime victim’s rights and other philanthropic work.

For example, in 2015, Jones chaired the Women Build for Habitat for Humanity Capital Region. Her efforts helped WLNS TV 6 receive the Community Involvement Award from the Michigan Association of Broadcasters.

Jones graduated with honors from Michigan State University’s College of Communication Arts and Sciences.  



Darlene Lee, Ph.D.  |  "Great I Graduated, Now What?!"
CEO | Darling Communications

Darlene S. Lee, Ph.D., is a leadership strategist and coach working to bridge the gender professional and equity pay gaps in the workplace. Lee is the creator of the highly recognized executive leadership initiative engaging senior executive men in accelerating women’s careers and leadership opportunities. She is also the thought leader behind the innovative annual executive education conference, "Women! Let's Hear It From The Men: Key Strategies From The Businessmen's Playbook," now in its fourth year.

Lee also provides executive coaching, diversity and gender inclusion training and harassment free workplace programming. She has facilitated trainings, workshops, conferences and seminars for numerous organizations focusing on professional development for women. In addition, Lee is serving on the Olivet College Women's Leadership Advisory Council and the Michigan Women's Commission.

With a background in professional development and public relations, Lee has taught courses in communications and public relations at the university level. She holds a doctorate in communication studies from Wayne State University as well as two other degrees in communications. 


Karla Middlebrooks  |  "Effective Communication Skills"

Retired Vice President Operations Finance  |  Chrysler Group

Karla Middlebrooks has been a contributing partner to Excellence In Action, Inc. (EIA) since 2008. In her role, she leads discussions and shares her experience as an integral part of EIA’s Maximizing Leadership and Professional Presence™ module.

Previously, Middlebrooks led a 24-year career with Chrysler, starting as an entry level financial analyst in 1984 and holding increasing levels of responsibility and leadership within the finance and controlling organization building to vice president of operations finance for the corporation. With financial management responsibilities at Chrysler, covering the financial forecasting, budgeting and controlling for Product Development, Procurement and Supply, Manufacturing, and Information Technology, Middlebrooks had financial oversight over 70 percent of the total cost base of the company, all capital expenditures and 150 employees.

Middlebrooks was the first African American woman within Chrysler promoted to the director level within finance. She holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from Northwestern University and a master’s degree in business administration from Harvard Business School.


Dr. Breanna O’Keefe ‘08, D.O.​  |  "Olivet College Alumnae Panel"

Primary Care Physician  |  Sparrow Hospital

Breanna O’Keefe ‘08, D.O., is a physician at E. W. Sparrow Hospital in Lansing, specializing in family medicine, manual medicine, and obstetrics. She provides comprehensive medical care for obstetric, newborn, pediatric and adult patients through hospice and performs in-office surgical procedures. O’Keefe also serves on the faculty of both Michigan State University (MSU) College of Human Medicine and MSU College of Osteopathic Medicine. She also serves as a community advisor and adjunct faculty to the Sparrow/MSU Family Medicine Residency Program. 

In addition to her roles as a physician and professor, O’Keefe also volunteers her medical services to interview and examine child victims of physical and possible sexual assault. She also serves her community through various other ways and is a mother of six children.


John C. Porterfield  |  "Breaking the Stereotype"

Regional President  |  Comerica

John Porterfield is a graduate of Central Michigan University and joined Comerica in 1985. After spending a year each in Ann Arbor and Lansing, Porterfield took his first lending assignment for Comerica in Northern California in 1987. In 1990, he moved to Grand Rapids and has been a Middle Market Relationship Manager, Credit Department Manager, Group Manager, and now Department Manager for Middle Market – West Michigan.

Porterfield is on the Boards of The Right Place, Inc. and ACG Western Michigan. Also, he is on the City of Grandville Brownfield Redevelopment Authority and the Regional Issues Council of the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce. He is also involved with the Economic Club of Grand Rapids. Porterfield resides in Grandville with his wife, Chantal, and they have two children. Porterfield enjoys traveling, hunting, dirt biking and the great outdoors.



Glenda Price, Ph.D. | "Recognizing the Dynamic Leader Within "

President Emeritus  |  Marygrove College 

Glenda D. Price, Ph.D., has served many institutions of education during her career. Price has been retired since April of 2016 but previously served as president of the Detroit Public Schools Foundation, the president of Marygrove College and the provost of Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia.

She has also held positions as the dean of the School of Allied Health Professions at the University of Connecticut, and professor and assistant dean of the College of Allied Health Professions at Temple University. Over her more than 30 years in higher education, Price has served several university boards and committees, as well as numerous professional associations, dealing with issues such as affirmative action, educational programs and policies and student welfare.

Price is a native of Pennsylvania where she attended Temple University. She earned a bachelor’s degree in medical technology, a master’s degree in educational media and a Ph.D. in educational psychology. 


Mary E. Tyler  |  "Personal Financial Planning"
Financial Strategist and a Registered Broker | Financial Industry Regulatory Authority

Mary E. Tyler is a financial strategist and a registered broker with Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. Tyler has more than 17 years of experience as a Regional Vice President with Primerica, a self-regulatory organization.

Tyler also holds licenses in Michigan, Wisconsin and California to represent various investment companies in the financial services industry. She has attended and presented financial workshops and training seminars across the U.S.

Tyler is nationally recognized for leading women in one of the world’s largest non-profit religious organizations. She is the Founder of the Joyful Sound Outreach Ministry, Co-Chair and Co- Founder of the Summit, a retreat for hurting women, which has a membership base of more than 700. 

Tyler holds a bachelor's degree in ministry leadership from Cornerstone University (CU), a master's degree in management from CU and is now pursuing a Doctorate in Theology from Midwest Bible College. 


Stephie Wilson '13  |  "Olivet College Alumnae Panel"

Stephie Wilson is a 2013 graduate of Olivet College which is where the principle of individual and social responsibility inspired her down an unconventional career path.

She is now a licensed cosmetologist working in a full service salon, Thomas & Company. Wilson plans to combine her passions in cosmetology and psychology to start a non-profit program in a low income school system that will provide hair care and a system of support for students in need.

Her personal philosophy is that insecurities should serve as inspiration and that making a difference can be beautiful. 




8 – 8:30 a.m.

Check-in & Networking at Cutler Event Center

8:30 – 8:50 a.m.

Welcome & Instructions for the day's event

8:50 – 9:10 a.m.

Transition to North Campus

9:10 - 9:55 a.m.

Concurrent Breakout Session I

9:55  - 10:10 a.m.

Transition to Session II

10:10  - 10:55 a.m.       

Concurrent Breakout Session II

10:55 - 11:10 a.m.

Transition to Session III    
11:10 -  11:55 a.m.

Concurrent Breakout Session III

11:55 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.

Transition to Cutler Event Center

12:15 - 1:30 p.m.

Lunch & Keynote Speaker: Danielle Scott-Arruda
1:30 - 1:45 p.m.


1:45 - 2:45 p.m.

Olivet College Alumnae Panel  |  Moderator: Sheri Jones
2:45 - 3 p.m.

Closing Remarks

3 - 4 p.m.

Reception & Campus Tours



          Breakout Session Options          

*Must select 3 of 5 when registering


Sheri Jones  |  Karla Middlebrooks | Tricia Foster
Speaking and leading with confidence  |  Leading as an introvert in extrovert world  |  How to work a room  |  Nonverbal communication skills


Tiffany Dowling  |  Sarah Jennings  |  John Porterfield
Do’s and don’ts for women effectively leading men  |  Working in male dominant fields


Margaret Dimond  |  Paula D. Cunningham  |  Glenda Price
An insider's playbook to growing your leadership skills  |  Staying motivated and moving forward


Darlene Lee  |  Honorable Judge Denise Page Hood
Standing out from the pack  |  Landing the job you want  |  Resume building & interviewing  |  Negotiating equal pay for equal work


Deborah Davis  |  Mary Tyler
Financial planning 101  |  Understanding the basics



Sponsors of Cultivating Women Leaders™ will be helping equip young women to embrace their inner strength and realize their potential as responsible leaders. The attendees will also have the opportunity to network and receive professional and personal development from Olivet College’s most successful alumni and Michigan’s finest women business leaders.

This powerful event is made possible by our generous sponsors, both individual and corporate, who will be listed below.


View Sponsor Levels          Get Sponsorship Info


Initiative Sponsor



Luncheon Sponsor




Thomas and Gayle Kolassa

Zonta Club of East Lansing



Panel Sponsor

Margaret Dimond

Margaret Hoats

​Lansing School District

Kenneth C. Milner

Southern Michigan Bank & Trust



Breakout Session Sponsor

AARP, Michigan

Traci and Steven Corey

Maria Davis

Tricia L. Foster

Anne and John Giroux

Karen Van Hentenryck

Whitetail Farms Farm Fresh Market

Zonta Club of Michigan Capitol Area Club



Student Table Sponsor

Anonymous -in honor of Marie Sliester, Presidential Spouse Traci Corey's mother

Delstene Atkinson

Betsy Dole Women’s Resource Center

Hanover Insurance

Kay E. Kossen, Attorney-Shareholder at Kreis, Enderle, Hudgins & Borsos, P.C.

Sparrow Hospital



Gifts to CWL

G. Asenath Andrews - in honor of Marie Sliester, Presidential Spouse Traci Corey's mother

​Cynthia M. Carroll​ - in honor of Marie Sliester, Presidential Spouse Traci Corey's mother

Charlotte Insurance Agency, Inc. Olivet, Michigan - in honor of Marie Sliester, Presidential Spouse Traci Corey's mother

Jason Conkin - in honor of Marie Sliester, Presidential Spouse Traci Corey's mother

Doug Federau - in honor of Marie Sliester, Presidential Spouse Traci Corey's mother

Ben K. Hart - in honor of Marie Sliester, Presidential Spouse Traci Corey's mother

Judge Denise Hood - in honor of Marie Sliester, Presidential Spouse Traci Corey's mother

Jackie Looser - in honor of Marie Sliester, Presidential Spouse Traci Corey's mother

Dana Moore - in honor of Marie Sliester, Presidential Spouse Traci Corey's mother

Joy Wiseman




Olivet College’s history is steeped in courage and in challenging the status quo by being committed to inclusivity and a champion for every student. Nearly 175 years ago, Olivet College’s founders believed that education should be available to all, regardless of gender, race, religion or financial means. Today the college continues to have a lasting impact on the lives of young people and especially young women in a myriad of ways. This is evidenced not only in our rich history of graduating three women in the midst of the Civil War in 1863 but today through strong female leadership on our board of trustees, faculty and administration.

In keeping with that rich history, Olivet College is hosting an event, Cultivating Women Leaders: Embracing Our Inner Strength, on Friday, March 3, 2017. The purpose of this year’s event is to provide our current and prospective students important tools and resources needed to establish themselves as leaders for today and the future. The program is centered on activities that will expose young women to positive examples of leadership that will greatly impact their lives. They will be given the opportunity to network and receive professional and personal development from Olivet College’s most successful alumnae, as well as Michigan’s finest women business leaders. They will also learn how to overcome the obstacles and challenges that are ever present in today’s communities and workplace.

Our great college recognizes that in order to inspire female students to be exceptional leaders we must provide them with continuous and meaningful opportunities to learn and grow. In addition to inspiring young women to be self-advocates and champions for individual and social responsibility, Cultivating Women Leaders will launch our Presidential Women’s Leadership initiative. While our current focus is on a successful inaugural event, we also recognize the greater potential for building on our first year’s success to expand and grow this effort into a sustaining year-long ongoing women’s leadership program serving women and girls from middle school to working professionals; but that’s for a future discussion.

Please join us in creating a better future for the next generation of women leaders.  



Presidential Women’s Leadership Initiative

Chair: Traci Corey  |  Olivet College Presidential Spouse (read bio here)


Olivet College Women’s Leadership Initiative Advisory Council

G. Asenath Andrews '72  |  Retired Founding Principal, Catherine Ferguson Academy

Shirley Boundy  |  President, Ideaz Inc.

Yvonne Caamal Canul ‘73  |  Superintendent, Lansing School District

Stella Cash  |  Vice President of Development & Strategic Partnerships, Sparrow Health System

Paula D. Cunningham  |  State Director, AARP Michigan

Deborah Davis  |  Vice President Commercial Loan Officer, Southern Michigan Bank & Trust

Margaret Dimond, Ph.D.  |  President and CEO, Crittenton Hospital Medical Center

Tiffany Dowling  |  President and CEO, M3Group

Tricia L. Foster, CPM, ACoM  |  Retired Senior Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer, CBRE Martin and CBRE Grand Rapids

Sharon R. Hobbs, Ph.D.  |  Board of Trustees, Olivet College

Honorable Judge Denise Page Hood  |  Chief Judge, United Sates District Court

Teri Hull  |  Vice President - Tax, Dart Container Corporation

Shelley Irwin  |  Program Host and Producer, WGVU Morning Show

Sarah Jennings, CPA, CFE  |  Principal, Maner Costerisan

Sheri Jones  |  News Anchor, WLNS TV 6 Lansing

Darlene Lee, Ph.D.  |  CEO, Darling Communications

Kay E. Kossen  |  Attorney-Shareholder, Kreis, Enderle, Hudgins & Borsos, P.C.

Karla Middlebrooks  |  Retired Vice President Operations Finance, Chrysler Group

Glenda Price, Ph.D.  |  President Emeritus, Marygrove College

Kelly Rossman-McKinney, APR  |  CEO and Principal, Truscott Rossman

Jacqueline D. Taylor, Ph.D.  |  Retired Vice President, Davenport University 

Karen Van Hentenryck  |  Vice President, Association Management Group


Olivet College CWL Planning Committee

Delstene Atkinson | Assistant Vice President for Advancement, Olivet College

Hailey Barrus | Director of Creative Services, Olivet College

Traci Corey  |  Chair, Presidential Women’s Leadership Initiative 

Maria Davis | Provost and Dean, Olivet College

Cindy Espinosa-Gonzalez | Current Student, Olivet College

Dominique Giroux | Current Student, PLI Fellow, Olivet College

Taylor Gorr ‘16 | Content Specialist, PLI Fellow, Olivet College

Mona Hinamanu | Current Student, PLI Fellow, Olivet College

Lisa Lehman ‘02 | Assistant Vice President for Admissions, Olivet College

Vicki Mellino '16 | Digital and Social Media Specialist, Olivet College 

Kori Ramirez | Current Student, Olivet College

Stephie Wilson ‘13 | Top Five Graduate, PLI Fellow, Olivet College



For more information about Olivet College’s Cultivating Women Leaders program email

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