The only impact of the weather is that it cancelled flights out of DC and our Keynote speaker, Liliana Madrigal, will be unable to attend. She has graciously agreed to reschedule and come to campus a bit later this spring so we will let you all know when that date is set. We have managed to fill the spot left by Ms. Madrigal with a panel of scientists who have spent time working on environmental issues in other countries including China, Malawi, Northern Ireland, New Zealand, Australia and Bolivia. The panel will be made up of Dave Johnson, Carolyn Thomas and Nell Fredericksen. Our Opening Session speaker Louisa Branscomb featured on Bluegrass Today!!! She speaks at the Ferrum College Women's Leadership Conference today at 9:45 am in the Panther's Den - come join us - no registration necessary!
Keynote Speaker: Liliana Madrigal - Senior Director of Operations, Amazon Conservation Team
A veteran of conservation work for over two decades, Liliana co-founded ACT in 1996 with Dr. Mark Plotkin. Liliana oversees all ACT programmatic activities, traveling frequently to South America to meet directly and work with ACT's indigenous partners in the Amazon and serving as chief liaison to shamans and tribal leaders of the northwest Amazon. Liliana also drives the implementation of ACT's women's programs, which seek to build esteem, increase sustainable development opportunities and advance human rights among women of indigenous communities across Amazonia. Her initiative encouraged the formation in 2004 of the first full-fledged union of female traditional healers in the Colombian Amazon, the Asociación de Mujeres Indígenas de la Medicina Tradicional.
Early in her career, with The Nature Conservancy, Liliana served as the Director of the Costa Rica Program where she managed the Parks Campaign through which many protected areas in Costa Rica were consolidated, and new ones were created. In 1987, she helped found Conservation International and served as the Director of the Southern Central America Program, responsible for all organization activities in Costa Rica and Panama. Liliana and Dr. Plotkin were 2008 co-awardees of the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship. In 2006, Liliana was awarded the Circle of Bridge-Makers Award from the Angeles Arrien Foundation.
A native of Costa Rica, Liliana lives in Arlington, Virginia with her husband Mark and two daughters, Gabrielle and Ann Lauren. She is a graduate of the University of California at Los Angeles.
For more information on the Amazon Conservation Team click here.
Opening Session: Louisa Branscomb - PhD, Clinical Psychologist, Songwriter, and Bluegrass Musician
Louisa Branscomb is a "household word" in bluegrass and acoustic music, and credited with bringing a "whole generation of young women" into bluegrass via her classic composition, "Steel Rails," as recorded by Alison Krauss. A few honors garnered by Steel Rails are recordings on two Grammies (Krauss, and John Denver), SPBGMA song of the year in 1991, and the distinction of the longest running chart hit in Bluegrass Music. 2009-2010 saw her song "Don't Turn Your Back," the title track recorded by Dale Ann
Bradley on Compass records, hold a place on bluegrass charts for nearly a
year, and win a fans' choice CMA video award as well.
In 1972 Louisa became one of the first females to front a band, starting
Boot Hill with Sam Sanger., making her one of the first females to front
a band and play banjo in modern bluegrass. Louisa's pioneer
spirit and song writing abilities continued to shape the landscape of
bluegrass music throughout the decade as the band recorded three albums,
and toured extensively until 1980.
A nominee for the 2011 SPBGMA Songwriter of the Year, Louisa has over 90 cuts by artists including Krauss, Denver, Dale Ann Bradley, McPeak Brothers, Lonesome Redwing, Janet McGarry, Fontanna Sunset, and others. Her soon-to-be-released Compass project, "I'll Take Love," pairs world-class vocalists with Branscomb creations that span country to bluegrass to swing, including Dale Ann Bradley, John Cowan, Claire Lynch, Alison Krauss, Steve Gulley, and mega-players Alison Brown, Josh Williams, Alan Bibey, Missy Raines and others. Besides her 2 Grammy cuts, Louisa has earned two IBMA Recorded Event of the Year trophies, "Tribute to Women in Bluegrass," (Mark Newton, producer) and "Daughters of Bluegrass."
Louisa also holds a PhD in Clinical Psychology and pursues various research interests and articles relevant to the empowerment of women. She received a research award from the Georgia Psychology Association in the psychology of minorities for work on mother-daughter relationships, study of merger versus individuation in women, which led to research in mutuality and ethics of mutuality. She has a longstanding interest in relational ethics, empowerment, and the integration of an understanding of
depth and transformational psychology to the creative process of
For more information on Louisa Branscomb please visit her website.
Alumna Speaker: Dr. Sandra Via '04, Ferrum College Assistant Professor of Political Science
Sandra Via graduated from Ferrum College in 2004 with a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science. She holds a Master's Degree in Political Science and a PhD in Planning, Governance and Globalization from Virginia Tech. She is currently an Assitant Professor of Political Science and the International Studies Program Coordinator at Ferrum College. Sandra's research interests include feminist international relations theory, globalization studies, and celebrity studies. She is the Co-editor (with Laura Sjoberg) of Gender, War, and Militarism: A Feminist Perspective. Her publications include "Gender, Militarism, and Globalization: Soldiers for Hire and Hegemonic Masculinity" in Gender, War and Militarism: A Feminist Perspective, "Big Blocks of Cheese and Other Lessons on American Politics and Government: 15 Weeks in The West Wing" (co-authored with Courtney Powell Thomas), and "Striking Back at Neoliberalism: Building Social Solidarity Through Liberation Theology."
Kickoff Concert Event - March 6th, 7p.m. in the Panther's Den
LOUISA BRANSCOMB WITH SPECIAL GUESTS JEANETTE AND JOHNNY WILLIAMS
Free and open to the general public.
The Women's Leadership Conference is pleased to announce a concert of special music from award winning singer-songwriter-performer Louisa Branscomb, along with master performers and composers Jeanette and Johnny Williams.
For this special evening event, performer and songwriting Diva Louisa Branscomb has joined forces with master vocalist-instrumentalists-songwriters Jeanette and Johnny Williams for a blend of originals in the hands of folks that know how to write it, sing it, and deliver it like it's supposed to be. It's a rare opportunity to see these three icons of bluegrass together, and it promises to be an uplifting blend of heartfelt acoustic and bluegrass that moves and inspires, delivered with taste, skill, and heart.
Individually and collectively, these master musicians stand on accolades that go forever. Louisa's include over 140 songs recorded in bluegrass and acoustic music, SPBGMA Song of the Year, two Grammy selections (Krauss and Denver), two IBMA Recorded Event of the Year awards, two nominations for the 2011 awards, longest running chart hit in bluegrass ("Steel Rails"), #36 bluegrass sone 2011 ("I'll Take Love"), induction into the Atlanta Music Hall of Honor, three time nominee for Songwriter of the Year (SPBGMA), and member of the "Daughters of Bluegrass." Jeanette, reigning (and 4 time winner) Traditional Female Vocalist of the Year is a multi-award winning vocalist as well as member of IBMA Recorded Event winners Daughters of Bluegrass, and has won the prestigious Chris Austin Songwriting Contest in Bluegrass. Johnny, award winning guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter, is distinguished as one of the most revered early songwriters in bluegrass and one of the first to contribute new, fresh songs that capture the integrity of the founding bluegrass sound. Johnny's name is a household word in bluegrass, as a master traditional singer, guitar player, and songwriter.
This show will excel at both ends of the bluegrass spectrum: from the wistful beauty of Jeanette's pure, emotional singing all the way to the real-deal bluegrass soul that "is" Johnny Williams. This evening of music promises to be informal, entertaining, and fun in the relaxed, intimate setting of the Ferrum College Panther's Den.