WCTF Conference History

UM Women of Color Task Force
Conference Themes & Keynote Speakers, 1983 - 2017

1983 – Survival, Career Development and Networking (1st)
            Dr. Bernadine Denning 

1984 – Survival, Career Development and Networking (2nd)
            Ms. Jennie Partee and Ms. Beulah Sanders, WCTF Founders

1985 – Women of Color: Striving for Excellence (3rd)
            MsCarman Harlan (WDIV news personality)
            Dr. Mildred Tirado, UM Counseling Services Center

1986 – Focus On: Effectiveness, Productivity, and Professionalism (4th)
           The Honorable Cynthia D. Stephens,Wayne County Circuit Court Judge
           Ms. Rose Martin, Director of the Peace Neighborhood Center

1987 – Working Constructively Toward the Future: If You Think You Can, You Can (5th)
            Ms. M. Susan Watson (Detroit Free Press Columnist)
            Ms. Laura Rendon (Assistant Professor of Education at the University of South Carolina)

1988 – Imagine What We Can Be: Challenge, Create, Celebrate (6th)
            Dr. R. Griffin

1989 – Shades of Quality: Emerging, Excelling, Empowering (7th)
            A. Deer

1990 – Progressing Towards Plurality: The Challenge of the 90s (8th)

1991 – See Beyond Today: Inspiring a Vision to Enhance the Quality of Life (9th)
            Dr. Gwendolyn Calvert Baker, Director - YWCA of USA and President of NYC Board of Education
            Dr. Howard McCurdy (microbiologist)

1992 – Ten Years In Retrospect: Commemorating Our Past, Securing Our Future (10th)
             Ms. Valerie J. Johnson, Director of Native American Services
             Ms. Susan L. Taylor, Editor in chief of ESSENCE Magazine

1993 – Globally Pulling Our Cultures Together: Positioning Ourselves to Empower, Impact and Excel (11th)
             Ms. Helen Zia, MS Magazine
             Ms. Sonia Sanchez, Activist

1994 – Developing a Plan for Excellence (12th)
            Dr. Elizabeth Allen, R.N.

1995 – Success: Beginning with the End in Mind (13th)
            Dr. Benjamin Carson, Cardiologist and UMMS Graduate

1996 – Building and Creating Opportunities for Growth (14th)
            Ms. Patricia Russell-McCloud, Federal Communications Commission

1997 – Looking Back, Moving Forward: 15 Years with the Women of Color Task Force (15th)
            Ms. Thelma Wells, Christian TV Personality (Dallas, TX)

1998 – Reforging Our Lives into the New Millennium (16th)
            Ms. Vanna Novak, Motivational Speaker

1999 – Ready, Set, Go TEAM! (17th)
            Ms. Laurita Thomas, CHRO - UM Health System

2000 – The Celebration of a New Era, New Opportunities and a New You (18th)
             Dr. Bertice Berry, Social Activist and National Talk Show Host

2001 – Not Without A Struggle: Honoring our Past, Taking Control of Our Future (19th)
            Rev. Shaheerah Stephens, Author and Community Activist

2002 – Women on a Mission: 20 Years of Excellence (20th)
            Chief Benny Napoleon, Detroit Police Department

2003 – One University, One Community, One Destiny: Staff and the University’s Mission (21st)
            President Mary Sue Coleman
            Ms. Sue Guevara, UM Women’s Basketball Coach

2004 – Finding Your Path: Developing the Excellence Within (22nd)
            Ms. Beverly Jenkins, Author (Fiction)

2005 – Inclusion and Opportunity: Recognizing Everyone’s Contribution (23rd)
           Dr. Toni Hoover, Vice President - Pfizer GRD, Ann Arbor Campus

2006 – Healthy Person, Healthy Society (24th)
            Mr. Pete Thomas, NBC’s “The Biggest Loser” (Motivational Speaker)

2007 – 25 Years of Promoting Leadership & Diversity (25th)
            Dr. Mary Frances Berry, University of Pennsylvania & Former Chair, US Commission on Civil Rights

2008 – Work, Lead & Succeed In A Global Economy (26th)
            Dr. Kenya Ayers, Executive Director of Esperanza Communications
              and past State Chairperson, Michigan ACE Network

2009 – Enhance U: Education, Empowerment & Equity (27th)
            Dr. Howard G. Adams, President - H. G. Adams and Associates, Inc.
            Founding Director, GEM National Institute on Mentoring

2010 – Excel in Uncertain Times: Identify Resources & Maximize Opportunities (28th)
            Ms. Gail Perry-Mason, Vice President - Oppenheimer & Co, Inc.

2011 – YOU First: Balancing Work, Family & Life (29th)
            Rep. Shanelle Jackson, Michigan (D-Michigan)

Summer 2011 – U-M Staff Mentoring & Coaching for Diversity Conference
             Dr. Howard G. Adams, Keynote Speaker

2012 – 30 Years of Legacy, Leadership and Change (30th)
            Dr. Johnnetta B Cole, National Museum of African Art
            2012 Conference Event Announcement
            2012 Conference Flyer

2013 – Planning + Action + Perseverance = Success! (31st)
            Ms. Donna Brazile, Political Strategist and Georgetown University Professor
            Click here to view the 2013 WCTF Conference keynote address given by Donna Brazile.

2014 – Transforming the Face of Leadership (32nd)
            Dr. Mae Jemison, former NASA astronaut
Click here to view the 2014 WCTF Conference keynote address given by Dr. Mae Jemison.

2015 – Tools for the Journey: Self-Awareness, Confidence & Respect (33rd)
            Mr. Alfred (Al) Squire, Director of the Greenville Health System MedEx Academy
            Click here for photos from the 2015 conference

2016 – Diversity, Equity & Inclusion: A Staff Perspective (34th)
            Dr. Ruth J. Simmons, "The Dilemma of Inclusivity: How Can We Make It Work?"
Click here to view the 2016 WCTF Opening Session and Keynote Address with Dr. Ruth Simmons

2017 – U-M Staff: The Heart of Maize & Blue (35th)
            Jane Elliott, Anti-racism Activist & Educator & 
            Roland S. Martin, Host & Managing Editor of News One Now
            "Race, Gender & Identity in the Workplace"
            Click here for more information

2018 – Equity for All: Reclaiming Our Time (36th)
            April Ryan, American Urban Radio Networks D.C. Bureau Chief
Click here to view the 2018 WCTF Keynote Address with April D. Ryan