Connecting Minot’s Women through Inspirational Alignment

Written by: Erin Beene
(L to R) Christel Laskowski, Michelle J. Wall, It’s Her Brand Enterprises Owner/Speaker Ashley Rae, Dawn Palumbo and Rianne Kuhn. February 13, 2019 at the Grand Hotel. Supplied Photo

What does it mean to be a female in the workplace in Minot? The founding members of Minot Women Connect make it their mission to offer professional development for women in the area that reflects the hurdles women may encounter in the workplace. The group, founded in 2017, was learned about from a similar organization in Fargo. Michelle Wall, one of the founding members, told the Northern Sentry that she, along with Megan Laudenschlager, was inspired to begin one here. The purpose of the Minot Women Connect group is to “share, build and give”. Connect hosts several inspirational speakers and panels throughout the year to inspire women, help change and adapt with life, and all the while learning and growing together in the business sphere.

Since the group’s formation 5 years ago, they have hosted many events, including speaker Anne Mahlum – a powerful business owner and athlete – as well as a murder mystery social this past March. Like everything else, Covid caused it to take a break, but the MWC has an extra special upcoming speaker on August 31st. Sam Goodwin will address the audience about his time being a captive in Syria. “In May of 2019, Goodwin was wrongfully detained on false charges of espionage in Syria. He endured more than nine weeks of imprisonment, including solitary confinement, a sham trial, blindfolded interrogations, and a dramatic release. Goodwin’s presentations today detail embracing uncertainty and the efforts it took to manage and survive captivity,” said the Minot Area Chamber EDC.

This event is open to the public, both men and women, and will be at the Grand Hotel, August 31st, 11:30- 1pm. Tickets are $30 each and can be purchased at the Chamber’s Website by logging in or creating a guest account,

This exciting speaker will unravel his captivating life as “His release marked the first time an American civilian had been freed by the Syrian regime. Today, Goodwin shares his experiences through speaking engagements worldwide, including to audiences of elite athletes, faith groups, corporate conventions, the US Military, and others.”

The Minot Women Connect group partners with the Minot Area Chamber EDC as a not-for-profit organization “to reach as many women as possible and address unique challenges professional women face in today’s business environment and provide connections, inspiration and an opportunity to socialize with and encourage one another, tapping into the sense of community women crave,” explained Wall. The members, including Kathy Aas, Christel Laskowski, Beth Feldner, Dawn Palumbo and Rianne Kuhn open to all sorts of ideas and feedback about what types of events would be helpful in the future and what they would like to see. Because this organization is operated strictly by volunteers, the price of the event or cost of sponsorship strictly goes to cover other events or speakers in the future. Please come out this month to hear Sam Goodwin speak, support businesswomen in Minot and engage with the community.

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