Officer Women Leadership Symposium (OWLS)

The Officer Women Leadership Symposium (OWLS) convenes women leaders in the military and veteran community, experts, innovators, and thought leaders to explore emerging trends, strengthen skills, and transform observations into actionable insights to lead positive change.

Registration Open!

Mini-Officer Women Leadership Symposium One Agenda 2021

Reimagining Meaningful Leadership: Leading Self
Tuesday, 13 April, 2021
(11:30a - 3:30p EDT)
Virtual Event

Time (EDT)SessionSpeakers
In a world of shifting threats and vast cultural pressures, how do you lead yourself
effectively and consistently to ultimately inspire confidence both personally and
professionally in those around you? This session shares experience, stories, and
lessons from two different perspectives that will help you successfully lead yourself.
Col Mafwa Kuvibidila USAF; Captain
Faliesha Yeager, USAF
In the face of internal and external pressures, how do you stand firm in your
leadership and convictions while skillfully navigating challenges that may compromise
your values or authenticity to reach your goals? This keynote will offer tips and
insights from her experiences as a woman submariner and astronaut.
Kayla Barron, former Submariner and NASA Astronaut;
Moderated by Laura Hatcher, USN Capt (ret)
12:45p2:15pLEADING SELF
In these unprecedented times, our traditional understanding of leadership is evolving rapidly to address new challenges. This panel will speak to various ways you can lead self by personally influencing your own thinking, feelings, and actions towards your goals to better align your intentions with the impact you want to have as a leader.

Moderated by Mo and Katy
RADM Melissa Bert, USCG;
Claudia Cimini, US Merchant Marines;
Master Gunnery Sergeant Bonnie Diaz, USMC;
Major General Urrutia-Varhall, USAF (ret);
Phyllis Wilson Army (ret) and President of Women’s Memorial
How do you maintain good health and fitness through all phases of life - especially when dealing with stress, pressure, and lack of consistency in today’s world? Olympian Elexa Orrange-Allen shares her experiences and personal strategies to build high performance, maintain wellness, and find balance in the face of life's challenges - especially during these uncertain times.
Elexa Orrange-Allen — US Army Veteran, Olympian, Coach, and Trainer
See Details below
Select and Join the Roundtable of your choice.
2:55p3:00p Change Roundtables
Select and Join a second discussion
Select and Join a second Roundtable Discussion
See Details below
Select and Join the Roundtable II Discussion of your choice.


Select the Roundtable you would like to join during the Mini-OWLS One, April 13.
Roundtable I (2:30pm - 2:55pm EDT) & Roundtable II (3:00pm - 3:25pm EST)

ThemeRoundtable TopicModerator
Optimizing Work and Life Finding Balance: Embracing Your Artistic and Creative Side as a Military Officer LtCol Janine Garner Marine Pilot and current Joint Staff member, published fantasy author and artist
At Sea or on a Deployment - Staying True to Self Lieutenant "Curt" James Bushman A career cutterman who has served for almost 20 years in the Coast Guard
Dual Career Balance Amy Ryder A former Air Force Intel Officer and current corporate executive and military spouse
Building Your Passion into Your BusinessLaura Hatcher A retired Naval Officer (USNA, ’92), who built her photography hobby into a business
Skills for Success Goal Setting Greg Jenkins Management expert, mentor, trainer, executive coach, published author & Army veteran
Mentoring for Impact, Collaboration, and Growth Melody Gratic, M.A.Ed Army veteran, business owner and International Trainer and Certified Coach
Decision MakingMo Barrett A former pilot, AF Colonel, (USAFA, ’93), expert leadership coach, comedian, and storyteller
Stepping Outside Your Comfort Zone Shari Silverman, recently retired AF Colonel (USAFA, ’91), board certification in Orthopedics PT
Health and Wellness Alternative Health Tracy Lorenz Former AF helicopter pilot (USAFA, ’96), cancer survivor and alternative health advocate
Yoga Techniques for ResilienceShaye Molendyke Director of the Yogafit for Warriors Program and retired AF Lieutenant Colonel
Managing and Dealing with LossRev Marilyn Jenkins retired AF Colonel, become an Episcopalian priest, serving at St George's Episcopal
Continuing Discussion on Wellness During Uncertain Times (Roundtable 2 Only) Elexa Orrange-Allen Former Olympian, Army officer (USMA, ’90), corporate executive, trainer and coach
Habits to Build for Life Financial Management for Military and Veteran Women Kimberly Barboza Former Naval Officer (USNA, ’94) who is a financial advisor and business owner
Comedy: Bringing Laughter to Your Life Robin Johnson Army veteran, comedy mentor for Armed Services Arts Partnership and comedian
Financial Planning Halima Muhammad Financial advisor and Air Force veteran committed to financial success stories
Culture and Society Women, Peace, and Security Madison Scaccia Air Force officer, expert on women’s role in intra-and-post conflict reconstruction
Be a Lady They SaidBeth Jarvis US Army Veteran, Microsoft Senior Engagement Mgr, veteran advocate/USO volunteer

Once registered, access the Event Agenda and Roundtables using the links below:

Once registered, access your preferred OWLS Small Group Discussion (4:00p – 4:30p EDT) using the link below:


11-12 APRIL 2024


Hosted at George Mason University with virtual option for those who cannot attend in person.

  • 11 April, 2024 9:00-4:30pm: Professional development workshops, opportunities to network with top-caliber, military friendly employers and resources that assist military women in advancing their career goals and/or making successful career transitions after their military service.
  • 11 April, 2024 4:30-6:00pm: Evening Reception
  • 12 April, 2024 9:00-5:00pm: Keynotes, panel discussion, and inspiring speakers in an event that brings together fellow women military and veteran leaders, experts, innovators, and thought leaders from all services.

Military and veteran women officers, officers-in-training, senior enlisted women (E6+), and government leaders (GS 12+) are encouraged to attend.

2024 Event Theme: Rooted in Service, Growing the Future Together

This event theme will explore how the call to service fuels military and veteran women to lead our nation for a strong future. Regardless of challenges, our commitment to a cause greater than self helps to fuel aspirations for the highest possible impact as a leader.

2024 Officer Women Leadership Symposium (OWLS) Agenda

The OWLS is an event with keynotes, panel discussions, and opportunities for discussion.

Event Details

Transportation and Location

We look forward to having you join us at the George Mason University in Arlington, Virginia on the Arlington campus at Van Metre Hall, 135, Auditorium (metro stop: Virginia Square on the Blue and Orange lines).  The physical address is: 3351 Fairfax Drive, Arlington.  You may access the venue by metro or car.  Driving directions are on  Paid parking is available on site.  More details at and


Both events start promptly at 9:00am EST so we recommend you arrive early for check in.  All Career Workshop and OWLS participants are invited to join us for the Evening Reception with hors d’oeuvres and open bar from 4:30-6:00pm on Thursday, 11 April.  The OWLS on Friday, 12 April, will run from 9:00am-5:00pm EST.

Dress Code

Event attendees are encouraged to be comfortable yet professional.  Event attendees are recommended to wear business casual. Those who are unit funded may be required to attend in uniform, in which case, Class B uniform or equivalent is recommended. Speakers and Presenters are recommended to wear business attire or Service Dress.

Lunch and Refreshments will be provided

Event attendees will be able to enjoy lunch and refreshments at both events. The Evening Reception is open to both Career Workshop and OWLS registrants onsite, Thursday 11 April.  You may also register and join us for ONLY the Evening Reception if you prefer.  Attendees will enjoy time to mingle with hors d’oeuvres and open-bar from 4:30-6:00pm.

Hotel Recommendation

We are working to reserve a hotel block for the event.   More details soon.

Event Pricing

Pricing for 2024 Officer Women Leadership Symposium and Career Workshop In Person Early Bird In Person Virtual
2 Days: Career Workshop and Symposium (Apr 11,12) $210 $265 $75
Officer Women Leadership Symposium ONLY (OWLS) Apr 12 $180 $220 $60
Career Coaching Workshop ONLY Apr 11 $45 $60 $40
Evening Reception ONLY Apr 11 (If not registered to attend the Career Coaching Workshop or OWLS) $20 $25 n/a
Passion Profiler n/a $25 $25

*Early Bird pricing deadline ends: 15 March, 2024.  If you need ideas on ways to pay for this event, please contact us at

All Past Officer Women Leadership Symposium (OWLS) Event Resources and Videos may be accessed by AcademyWomen members.

Join AcademyWomen (free) and access event session videos and resources