Additional Break Out Session Speakers To Be Announced
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Additional Break Out Session Speakers To Be Announced
(scroll down to see all)
2019 Conference Keynote Speaker
Indiana’s “do-everything” forward completed 16 seasons in the WNBA, stepping away from her future-hall-of-fame-career following the 2016 season. Her naming as recipient of the very first ESPN Humanitarian Award in 2015 and a 14-year run of community service by her Catch The Stars Foundation are testament to her work off the court, however – more impactful than her MVP career on the court.
Since her playing retirement, she serves as director of player programs and franchise development with Pacers Sports & Entertainment, a post that keeps her engaged working with all three Pacers franchises: the Indiana Pacers, Indiana Fever and Ft. Wayne Mad Ants. She operates the cozy Tea’s Me Café on the north side of downtown Indianapolis, and continues her service as an ambassador with the NBA and WNBA. She serves on a developmental committee with USA Basketball. She also serves as an SEC ESPN Women’s Basketball Analyst.
In March 2016, Catchings released an autobiographical story, Catch A Star: Shining through Adversity to Become a Champion sharing her story of overcoming hearing loss, separation from family, high expectations and the pain of debilitating physical injuries. She reached for the stars with hard work, perseverance and her faith in God.
On the court, Catchings’ legacy is cemented as one of the greatest women ever to play the game. She retired as the league’s No. 2 scorer (7,380 points) and rebounder (3,316) of all-time, already its career leader in free throws (2,004) and steals (1,074). In postseason play, nobody appeared in as many WNBA Playoff games (68) as Catchings, or started as many (67). She retired as the WNBA postseason leader in points (1,141), rebounds (598), free throws (356), steals (152), double-doubles (27) and minutes played (2,310).
The first man or woman in recorded basketball history to record a quintuple-double (Duncanville High School in 1997), Catchings’ leadership, tenacity and all-around skills led the Indiana Fever to becoming one of the WNBA’s elite franchises. The Fever reached the playoffs 13 times in Catchings’ 15 active seasons, including a WNBA-record run of 12-in-a-row from 2005-16. The Fever reached the conference finals eight times, including five straight seasons. The Fever won a WNBA championship in 2012 and came within one game of two more championships in five-game WNBA Finals appearances in 2009 and 2015. Catchings played in every playoff game in Fever history through the time of her retirement.
Catchings also has 4 Olympic Gold medals. Her career included being on the U.S. Women's Basketball team in Athens in 2004, Beijing in 2008, London in 2012, and Rio in 2016.
Catchings was the WNBA’s only player ever to spend an entire career of 16 or more seasons with the same franchise.
Smart Women Smart Money Conference Emcee
Carolyn Holly comes to the Smart Women Smart Money team from the Treasure Valley of Idaho after being involved with Smart Women Smart Money as its conference emcee for the past 15 years. Holly currently serves as Vice President of Idaho Business for Education. In her role, she is an instrumental part of developing meaningful relationships with business leaders to create a highly educated and skilled workforce.
Carolyn enjoyed a 33 year career at KTVB Channel 7 television in Boise, where she became one of Idaho's most experienced and best known television personalities.
Carolyn has acted as an important representative and volunteer for many Treasurer Valley organizations including Smart Women Smart Money, Boise Public Schools Foundation, Idaho Youth Sports Commission, the Saint Alphonsus Foundation, FUNDSY, the Boise Police Chiefs Citizen Advisory panel and the President of the FACES Foundation.
Smart Women Smart Money Arkansas Conference Host
Dennis Milligan was elected to the Office of Treasurer of State in 2014, securing 56% of the vote. As Treasurer, he serves as the State’s banker and is responsible for an investment portfolio of approximately $3.5 billion.
Milligan previously served as Saline County Circuit Clerk from 2011-2015. He is a successful small business owner who started his company, Water Treatment Services (WTS), from scratch in 1985. WTS has expanded from central Arkansas to serving customers in 17 states. Milligan is also a real estate developer and home builder.
As Treasurer of State, Milligan has brought his innovative spirit and mindset to the office, and has not just accepted “that’s the way we’ve always done it.” In his first full fiscal year in office, he doubled the receipted earnings on the State’s investments from an average of $20 million to $48.9 million. He increased that to $57.5 million in fiscal 2017. Since taking office, Milligan has returned more than $154 million back to the State of Arkansas in investment receipts, making good on his pledge to make Arkansans’ tax dollars work harder for them.
Milligan also oversees the Arkansas 529 College Investing Plan, which has seen more than $244 million in growth in total assets since he took office. He also implemented a financial education program under the Arkansas 529 program that increases awareness and financial literacy among Arkansas students. The AR Finance AR Future program, which is free to schools, has impacted 19,200 students in 148 schools, and has brought more than 36,500 hours of financial education to Arkansas students.
Milligan is a lifelong Arkansan and graduated from McClellan High School in Little Rock in 1976. He is married to his junior high school sweetheart, Tina (Summers). They have one daughter and son-in-law, Tiffany and Chad Brown, and three grandchildren.
Special Guest Speaker
In 2014, Andrea Lea was elected the 40th Auditor of State. As Auditor, Andrea is putting her experience to work as the state’s general accountant, administrator of the Arkansas Unclaimed Property Act, and payroll officer for over 600 elected officials and their employees. She is partnering with businesses and using technology to improve the way unclaimed property is reported to the state and returned to the rightful owners through the Great Arkansas Treasure Hunt. She is also working to reduce operating expenses and establish transparency as the foundation of the Auditor’s office.
Andrea Lea has nearly two decades of leadership experience in Arkansas. She served on the Pope County Quorum Court, the Russellville City Council, and three terms in the Arkansas General Assembly before being elected Auditor of State.
Andrea graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Emergency Administration and Management from Arkansas Tech University at the age of 47 and continues to advocate for non-traditional students to return to school and complete a degree.
She is a proud daughter, wife, and mother to U.S. Veterans. With family ties to Arkansas, she and her husband Phillip returned in 1982. They have three grown children and three grandchildren.
Smart Women Smart Money Conference Liaison and founding President of SFOF
As President of SFOF he is charged with leading the national organization and collaborating with like-minded state officials to promote fiscally responsible, free market principles to better impact state and federal financial policy. Kreifels is charged with ensuring that SFOF’s fiscal, operational, fundraising, marketing, and communication strategies are effectively implemented.
Kreifels spent five years as Assistant State Treasurer of Kansas. As Assistant State Treasurer he also served as chief of staff - an agency head and deputy to a statewide elected official. He managed all aspects of the Treasurer’s office including scheduling, policy development, legislative, budgeting and personnel.
Kreifels was accountable for an office which processed over $21B annually which is comprised of 42 employees with an annual budget of over $3.5M. He worked with the State Treasurer to create new programs and modernize existing ones to reach out to a diverse set of Kansans with a wide variety of financial education initiatives. He was responsible for identifying innovative ways to help return unclaimed property to Kansans.
Kreifels played an integral role in working with the Kansas 529 Learning Quest program and program manager to develop annual marketing plan which includes television, radio, newsprint, collateral material and other borderless marketing initiatives.
Kreifels continuously sought out ways to increase the use of technology in the office to reduce costs. He directed Emergency Preparedness Operations planning and training for the agency with exposure to FEMA, the Department of Homeland Security as well as the Kansas Department of Emergency Management.
Kreifels has spent the last 25 years encouraging, advising and working along side various federal, state, and local leaders. Before working for the public sector, Kreifels spent several years in banking.
He attended Kansas State University, received his undergraduate degree from Wichita State University, and his Masters from Friends University in Wichita, Kansas. He lends his leadership to several boards and non-profits. He and his wife Melanie recently traveled to a remote part of Ghana, Africa, on a mission trip to attend the grand opening of a school. He and Melanie live in the Kansas City area.
Smart Women Smart Money Conference Coach
Nicole Sherman is a dynamic leader-builder in the financial industry with over 25 years of broad-based experience. She currently serves as Senior Vice President & Puget Sound Market Region Manager in Retail Administration for Columbia Bank.
Nicole is passionate about people and as such was nominated for the Columbia Bank “Excellence in Leadership Award”, the highly regarded W.W. Philip Award and was formerly named only 1 of 4 women to the “Top 40 Under Forty” Business Executives by Utah Business Magazine as well as being named as a “Top 20 Under Forty Rising Star” by the Inland NW Catalyst Magazine.
She currently serves as a top-rated Faculty Member for Pacific Coast Banking Graduate School at University of Washington and serves on the Board of Directors and Executive Committee for United Way of Pierce County.