Women's Empowerment Conference and March
Women's Empowerment Conference & March is just around the corner, and we are so excited for you to see what’s in store. We’ve brought together a unique and inspiring group of speakers, and our schedule is full of engaging events and powerful workshops.
The Women’s Empowerment Conference and March, or what we like to call “WE,” take their inspiration from the historic Women’s Marches. Our vision for WE is to strengthen the coalition between a diverse intersectional community of women, men, gender non-binary individuals, within the Capital District of New York.
The overall goal is to provide a space for individuals to be inspired, motivated, and activated to engage, and change for the better, their communities.
Whether it is our keynote speakers, workshops, or performers, we remain committed to staying true to our vision of inclusivity and giving voice to those marginalized within our communities.
Healthcare Education Project Capital HV
Official Partner of Women's Empowerment Conference and March
New York State Nurses Association
Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan
1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East
Hudson Valley Area Labor Association AFL-CIO
Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood
Corey Ellis, Council President for the City of Albany
Tistrya Houghtling, NY State 107th Assembly District Candidate
League of Women Voters of Albany and Schenectady Counties
Women Against War
Assemblymember Patricia Fahy
The Hispanic Coalition NY
Schenectady County Human Rights Commission Martin Luther King, JR. Coalition
WE Conference Speakers
We’re proud to feature a list of prominent speakers who are at the forefront of their fields. These professionals are always eager to share their knowledge and inspire like-minded enthusiasts. Read more about this year’s speakers below, and contact us if you would like to learn more information.
Christine Ahn, intrepid activist, journalist, policy analyst and International Coordinator of Women Cross DMZ, promotes women’s voices in peace-making globally. Christine organized the 2015 Women’s March across the Korean DMZ, including Nobel Peace Laureates, women from North and South Korea and peace activists from across the world - including Gloria Steinem, Medea Benjamin and Ann Wright from the US.
Lacey Schwartz is a co-founder of Truth Aid, a multimedia production company that specializes in fiction and non-fiction stories about telling truths that are hard to talk about. Lacey directed, produced and co-wrote the critically-acclaimed documentary Little White Lie, which was the top-rated broadcast on PBS’s Independent Lens during the 2014-2015 season.
Her recent work includes directing and producing The Loving Generation, an original documentary series for Topic which went viral and sparked widespread conversation on race and identity.
Lacey was recently a Sundance New Voices Fellow and has a B.A. from Georgetown University, a J.D. from Harvard Law School, and is a member of the New York State bar.
Kathy M. Sheehan
Kathy M. Sheehan became Albany, New York’s 75th mayor on January 1st, 2014. On January 1st, 2018, she was sworn in for her second term. Mayor Sheehan has dedicated her administration to unleashing Albany’s full potential, leading with a commitment to community, equity, and opportunity. She is an energetic champion of the renaissance now underway in Albany and is working to revitalize all of the City’s neighborhoods.
Mayor Sheehan is committed to efficient and responsive government that includes diverse community voices. Since taking office, Mayor Sheehan has initiated major changes, including implementing the largest annual spending decrease in more than 15 years, modernizing City Hall, completing the first successful rezoning of the City in more than half a century, and securing an unprecedented $12.5 million in new municipal aid.
Mayor Sheehan and her husband Bob are committed community members, having served on the boards of a number of community-based organizations. They live in the City’s 8th ward with their teenage son.
JoDee Kenney is a national award-winning journalist seen on the 24-hour news station Spectrum News in upstate New York. She is the host of the international podcast "Success w/ JoDee Kenney", available on iTunes, Google Play, and Stitcher. As a busy sports mom of 3, and wife to a talented chef, JoDee is an acclaimed inspirational speaker who also hosts empowering workshops and works one-on-one with clients in a variety of skills from social media to public speaking and more. JoDee can be found at:
Follow JoDee Kenny on: Facebook
Gabby Seay is the Political Director for 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East, where she oversees the union’s political, legislative, and policy work in New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maryland, Washington DC and Florida. Before joining the 1199 family, Gabby led a social impact consulting practice that worked with campaigns, companies and causes looking to build their lists, win campaigns, and deepen their relationships with its supporters.
Gabby cut her teeth in politics by organizing her fellow college students to support John Kerry for president. Since then, she’s led electoral, issue, and advocacy campaigns at the local, state and national level. Gabby is a proud Ohio native, but considers Brooklyn home.
Chelly Hegan has served as President/CEO of Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood since 2012 and began her tenure at Planned Parenthood in 2006 when she served as Vice President for Human Resources and then as Senior Vice President for Operations.
Hegan brings a unique and deep background to the organization. Her educational background combines studies in sociology and Fine Arts and includes a B.A. from Hartwick College, and an M.A. and M.F.A. from the University at Albany.
Prior to joining the team at UHPP, Hegan worked at the Albany/Schenectady League of Arts, and for The Kaleel Jamison Consulting Group, Inc. She has served as a Board member for many community agencies including Troy Public Library, Sponsor a Scholar, Columbia County Health Care Consortium, the Pride Center of the Capital Region and the Center for Women in Government and Civil Society.
Kym Dorsey is a leader in the community. As a transgender woman of color who has learned how to tell her story effectively and organize in her community, she has a unique position to pass that along to other women in the community and she does. She runs a support group for trans women of color, appears publicly and leads in events like the Transgender Day of Remembrance, which is a celebration of trans lives, occurring yearly in November.
Kym currently works with various groups and agencies to talk about what it means to be transgender and the distinct issues the trans community faces. She was the first trans woman honored by the City of Albany during Black History Month for her leadership in Albany and around the State.
Dr. Aliya Saeed
Aliya Saeed, M.D. is a board-certified practicing psychiatrist and a mother. She has written extensively about discrimination, racism, and xenophobia in local, national and international print media. She is regularly invited as a speaker at professional, academic and community venues. She is active in the interfaith community and was the founding president of the Muslim Community Center.
Kaelyn DiCocco is a community leader, bisexual activist, and a passionate advocate for gun control reform and working towards an end to discrimination in school. In March 2018, she co-organized the March for Our Lives in Albany. In May 2018, she was recognized for her contributions at the Annual Schenectady Human Rights Awards Breakfast Ceremony, winning the award for Human Rights in the youth category. Kaelyn is currently a senior at Schalmont High School.
Hamza Noor is a Muslim Pakistani immigrant, community organizer, and leader. In March 2018, he co-organized the March for Our Lives in Albany. In May 2018, he was recognized for his contributions at the Annual Schenectady Human Rights Awards Breakfast Ceremony, winning the award for Human Rights in the youth category. He continues to fight passionately for human rights and civil rights in school and nationwide. Hamza is currently a junior at Schalmont High School.
Lisa Powell Graham
Lisa Powell Graham is a political consultant, public speaker, writer and life coach. She is a proven visionary leader, with more than two decades of successes in campaign management, strategic planning, fundraising, communications, and community organizing. Lisa was part of Hillary Clinton's Presidential campaign staff in 2016. She previously planned events for Hillary Clinton when the former Secretary of State and First Lady was her U.S. Senator in New York.
Lisa earned her Master in Public Administration (MPA) degree from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government in 2005. She is a Martha Beck Certified Life Coach, inspirational public speaker and writer, who specializes in empowering girls and women.
Angelicia A. Morris
Angelica "Ang" Morris is a woman of firsts. As the executive director of the Human Rights Commission in Schenectady, she is the first African-American woman to hold the position, and she's the youngest person to be appointed to the role.
Morris grew up in Binghamton and moved to the Capital Region when she was 18 and her mother remarried. She started college at Hudson Valley Community College before transferring to SUNY Albany.
Her first internship was for the New York State Assembly, working for Ed Sullivan, who represented the Upper West Side in Manhattan's 69th district. In 2006 she began working with the Human Rights Commission. Eventually, she got the opportunity to work as executive secretary for former Schenectady Mayor Brian Stratton in 2005. In July of 2013, she was appointed executive director of the Human Rights Commission.
Julie Tighe is President of the New York League of Conservation Voters and NYLCV Education Fund, where she leads the only statewide environmental organization in New York that fights for clean water, clean air, renewable energy and open space through political action.
Prior to joining NYLCV in October 2018, Tighe served in a variety of roles at the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), most recently as Chief of Staff. At DEC, she spent more than ten years working on climate change and environmental conservation policies.
Tighe was the primary negotiator of the landmark $2.5 billion Clean Water Infrastructure Act, the incorporation of climate change into New York’s historic $300 million Environmental Protection Fund, and the most comprehensive electronics recycling law in the country. She oversaw DEC’s policy development and served as a key member of the organization’s leadership team.
Libby Post has been working in local Albany and state politics for 40 years. She is the co-founder of CapitalWomen, the Capital District’s women’s political action committee, and is a political consultant for pro-choice, pro-LGBT candidates, a lobbyist for New York’s animal shelter and an advocacy expert in public library funding. She owns her own firm, Communication Services, and will debut a new political consultancy partnership in January 2019.
Jaye McBride is funny, smart and proudly transgender. She has traveled the world performing stand-up comedy both as a headliner and sharing the stage with comedy greats like Gilbert Gottfried, Jim Norton & Bobcat Goldthwait. Jaye has also been a part of The Boston Comedy Festival, New York Comedy Festival and was recently invited to headline the Big Pine Comedy Festival.
In addition to stand-up, Jaye writes for Lady Parts Justice League and speaks at colleges and groups all across the country with her lecture about being transgender called 'Trans 102: the Chamber of Secrets'. Having transitioned in 2007, Jaye is uniquely qualified to talk about awkward first dates, strained family relationships and self-acceptance.
Get in Touch
We hope you're able to attend. If you have questions about the registration process, our schedule or general information, don’t hesitate to reach out.
P.O. Box 632
Wynantskill, NY 12198