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Journalist to keynote 2014 Women’s Leadership Conference

MGM Resorts Foundation on Tuesday announced that journalist Soledad O’Brien will be keynote speaker at the 2014 Women’s Leadership Conference. The nonprofit event will be held at the MGM Grand on Aug. 6 and 7.

The theme of the 2014 conference is “Women Inspiring Women.”

“Soledad is not only an award-winning journalist, she’s also well-known for her philanthropic endeavors. She brings with her a rich and varied background that will inspire conference attendees,” said Phyllis James, chief diversity officer for MGM Resorts International, said in a statement.

A winner of multiple Emmy and Peabody awards, O’Brien is well-known for several critically acclaimed and successful documentary series on CNN, including “Black in America” and its follow-up, “Latino in America.”

She will continue to produce those documentaries and other content through Starfish Media Group, a multiplatform media production and distribution company she launched in June 2013.

The two-day conference will offer a wide range of learning opportunities, career guidance and personal growth tools, including:

■ Exposure to diverse, nationally recognized speakers and accomplished female role models.

■ Career-oriented workshops that will give participants hands-on opportunities to develop skills based on their career needs.

■ Three learning tracks for participants who are emerging leaders, emerging executives and executives.

There will be workshops for new business owners as well as established businesswomen. Jim Murren, CEO of MGM Resorts, has previously served on these panels and probably will attend this year.

CNN international anchor Natalie Allen was previously announced as the host of the conference and will be moderating panels and serving as master of ceremonies for the overall event on both days.

Two main panels will feature regional leaders and notable women from around the country.

Prominent Nevada women Pat Mulroy, Catherine Cortez Masto, Jean Birch and Rosemary Vassiliadis will participate on the two main panels. Wendy Davidson, CEO of Kellogg Co., and Susan Gambardella, senior vice president of Coca-Cola also will be on panels.

The cost of the conference is $350. In an emailed response, Sonya Padgett, manager of corporate communications for MGM Resorts, said several hundred people had registered, and the foundation was on track to surpass last year’s attendance of more than 600.

After the conference, MGM Resorts Foundation will donate the proceeds to a nonprofit organization that focuses on the development of women.

In March, $20,000 that included proceeds from last year’s conference was donated to Safe Nest.

Donations to the Women’s Research Institute and the Women’s Development Center were made in previous years.

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