Celebrating Women: Valley Conference Honors Non-Profits; Helen Hunt Keynote Speaker

The Central California Women's Conference will hold its 26th annual event from 7:15 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 17 at the Fresno Convention and Entertainment Center.

This year's theme is "Live Your Passion," organizers of the event said.

Oscar- and Emmy-winning actress, Helen Hunt, is this year's keynote speaker. She joins 32 other national and local speakers who will discuss important topics for women at the daylong event.

According to organizers of this year's event, Hunt's keynote speech, "Live The Journey of Life With Passion," will explore her belief that it is her duty as an artist and a woman to choose her roles carefully, only selecting those that portray women in a positive light and in leadership positions. She will share why her most important role is as a strong, independent woman and mother . . . whether on or off screen.

"We are especially thrilled that in addition to bringing the fabulous Helen Hunt, we have our first ever Latina Warm-up speaker. Puerto Rican native Maria Marin will grace our stage," said Conference Board president, Nen Casares.

The conference board has donated $550,000 to the Valley community to support women's and children's community benefit organizations.

The morning Warm-Up Session kicks off the conference by honoring 20 under-served youth who will receive the Wells Fargo/Encourage Tomorrow College and Career Preparation Scholarships.

Attendees choose three breakout sessions to attend throughout the day from 27 options. Topics include business and entrepreneurship, health and fitness, money and finance, family and parenting, spirituality and courage, service and activism, and strength and change.

Attendees also have the opportunity to visit the conference Marketplace and Community Corner where more than 175 businesses and non-profits share information about their products and services.

Tickets are $95 and include a continental breakfast, all seminars, the celebrity keynote speaker luncheon and the afternoon reception.

Tickets are limited to the first 3,500 attendees. Early registration is encouraged.

Tickets are now on sale at

Sponsorships and exhibit booths are still available, organizers of the event said. For sponsorship information contact Jan Edwards; for exhibit booth information contact Mary Stabelfeld at