land of opportunity

So more about this conference I’m speaking at… I have been following Young Women in Business (@YWiB) for the past year or so on Twitter.  They are an amazing organization… AMAZING.

More about YWiB:

“The Young Women in Business [YWiB] network is a non-profit society for emerging female leaders in Western Canada. The network acts as the central forum to connect ambitious, young women from a variety of careers, industries, and backgrounds. YWiB hosts a variety of events that provide our members with opportunities to develop relevant skills and knowledge, so that they have the insight, support, and capability to reach their fullest personal and professional potential.”

The organization truly gives me warm fuzzies. YWiB holds an annual conference called, Beyond Pink.  As per YWiB’s website, “it is a multi-day conference focused on encouraging personal and professional growth through passionate speaker presentations, educational workshops, engaging delegate activities, innovative tradeshow exhibitors, and inspiring networking opportunities.” The theme for the 2010 conference is “Make your brand, leave your mark” and it’s taking place on November 19 & 20, 2010 in Vancouver, BC.  In addition to keynote speakers and a  workshop series, this year’s conference includes:

  • Power Couple Panel & Networking Brunch
  • Case Competition
  • Entre-Carnival
  • Mentor Dinner
  • Silent Auction & Gala

I have been asked to speak at a Workshop Series and participate in the Entre-Carnival.  The Workshop Series will include speaking to approximately 60 delegates, including university students, passionate entrepreneurs, and aspiring professionals.  I have requested to be part of Day 2 – “Leave your mark”… and have BRILLIANT lessons I will share with these young women. [I will absolutely blog about the experience post-conference].  The Entre-Carnival is about celebrating entrepreneurs and inspirational people.  The goal is to share the stories of those that inspire with those who will inspire the future.  Ahh, warms your heart doesn’t it?

After I announced on Facebook that I would be speaking at this event, a friend of mine, Gregg, writes: “I know the previous organizers very well!!! Amazing event! You will fit right in!” When I first heard of Beyond Pink and YWiB, I immediately identified with both the conference and the organization.  I have been looking for a similar organization in Calgary with no success.  At one point I thought being in a different province would keep me from being involved in YWiB; now I know that it’s entirely possible.

I truly believe life is about finding and creating opportunities.  A large part of what I will bring to the Beyond Pink 2010 Conference is what I have accomplished in one year… a single year has defined my future.

Opportunities surround all of us each and every day – but it’s up to each of us to take action and often take a risk.

“Of all the people I have ever known, those who have pursued their dreams and failed have lived a much more fulfilling life than those who have put their dreams on a shelf for fear of failure.” – Unknown

When I think about where I was at a few years ago to where I am now, I reflect on how much I’ve grown.  By no means was I in a bad place, just a different place.  I have learned to expect a lot of myself.  I can see my potential.  I can see the influence and impact I have on others.  Yes, I love to relax and have low-key moments, but I owe it to myself to show the world my capabilities.

Sometimes I get told… “ugh, stop winning things”… “you’ve been given what?”…. “you’re going where?”…. My response?  You have to hold yourself accountable.  At the end of the day, no one is looking for you other than yourself.  If you want the world, GO GET THE WORLD. Your family and friends will always try to make sure you have the basic necessities (food, water, shelter), but will they continually push you to be the best you can be?  I doubt it.  [Shh.. they have their own agenda ;].  But maybe you only want that average job with average responsibility and a whole lot of free time to watch TV and internet roam?  That’s absolutely fine, but you’ve got to stay quiet.  Accept what you’ve dictated your life to be and support others on their quest to great.


At the end of the day, we all need to hope for support in whatever paths we choose.  I look for and create opportunities constantly.  My mind is constantly wandering to – what’s next?  No it doesn’t need to be a career move or a relocation… maybe you want to write a book, volunteer for a particular organization, give back, travel, support your family, or learn a new hobby.

This photograph was taken by a brilliant friend of mine, Madigan Reilly.  She instructed me to create a sign that said “She…” and left the rest up to me.  It was taken at about the 6 month mark in my journey, and I’m truly impressed that the first thing I thought of was “She believed in me.”  I have a lot of wonderful women in my life and I’m truly appreciative of each and every one of them.  This charity photo shoot was my way of thanking them for building me into a passionate leader, true friend, and inspirational young woman.  At that point I truly realized how far I had come and how important it was, to not only me, but to all the wonderful people in my life, and of course the community.

I truly believe in the good and brilliance of people.

My role at Beyond Pink 2010 will be to inspire these young women to achieve great, while managing the adversities of life.

I am honored to be included in an event that truly has lasting impact on young professionals in Western Canada. ❤

“Passion and purpose go hand in hand. When you discover your purpose, you will normally find it’s something you’re tremendously passionate about.” – Steve Pavlina


  1. […] 15, 2010 by jillianwalker On October 9th, I blogged “Land of Opportunity,” and I announced that I would be speaking at Young Women in Business’ (YWiB) annual […]

  2. […] 15, 2010 by jillianwalker On October 9th, I blogged “Land of Opportunity,” and I announced that I would be speaking at Young Women in Business’ (YWiB) annual […]

  3. […] October 9th, I blogged “Land of Opportunity,” and I announced that I would be speaking at Young Women in Business’ (YWiB) annual […]

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