Humanitarian worker who survived Somali kidnappers to address WISE Conference on Sept. 25


It’s not too late to get your ticket for the 2019 7th Annual WISE (Women Inspiring, Supporting Empowering) Conference scheduled for Sept. 25 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Lone Star College, located at 5000 Research Blvd. in The Woodlands, presented by The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Get your tickets immediately as the line-up of speakers, break-out session leaders, and a special training presented by Constable Gable on how to respond to an Active Shooter is close to a sell-out.

Founded in 2012, “Women Helping Women” is the motivation behind the collaboration between two organizations that founded the conference; Montgomery County Association of Business Women (MCABW) and Women on a Mission to Earn Commission (WOAMTEC).

Emceed by former FOX 26 Anchor and Traffic Reporter, Michelle Merhar, The WISE Conference presents Jessica Buchanan as the keynote speaker. Jessica is a Humanitarian worker kidnapped by Somali land pirates and held hostage for 93 days with her colleague amid 26 gun-toting and drugged captors who restrained her, psychologically tormented her, and constantly threatened beheading. Facing life or death issues daily, President Obama ordered Navy Seal Team 6 to rescue both Jessica and her colleague. Learn more about her story at Buchanan will have a book signing during the morning and the afternoon breakout times while participants are interacting with vendors.

In addition to hearing from Jessica Buchanan in the morning session, other speakers include Robin Roberts, a Certified Hypnotist, Kendra Windisch, Community Relations Specialist at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, speaking about the importance of cancer awareness and prevention in the morning session, and Natalie Urban, Physical Therapist Assistant and Certified Lymphedema Therapist at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

The afternoon session will kick off with LoriAnne Reeves, an experienced psychology consultant for oil/gas and aerospace industries. She currently coaches small businesses and corporations on leadership growth and will share information on Understanding your Leadership DNA.

Laura Lea Palmer, a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) and Danielle Scheiner, Executive Director of the Conroe Economic Development Council, have great expertise on the impact economic growth has on our community. They will be the last speakers before Constable Ryan Gable trains the attendees on what to do in an Active Shooter situation.

The 2019 WISE Conference benefits two local nonprofit organizations- Mosaics of Mercy, an organization serving the community for mental wellness and addiction recovery, and God’s Garage, is an all-volunteer non-profit organization with a mission to help single mothers, widows, and wives of deployed military by providing free vehicle repairs and free vehicles. 

Mosaics of Mercy was created to fill the high priority need in the community for a central connection point around mental health and wellness. They do this by creating connections to knowledge (education), initiating connections to mental health resources (navigation), and allowing for connections to God, creativity and community (cultivation). Serving both men and women, Mosaics of Mercy fosters a safe environment where brokenness and resources can be acknowledged and accessed cultivating mobilization, empowerment, hope, and healing to those with mental health concerns. Learn more at

God’s Garage is solely dependent on donations to rescue women from significant transportation challenges by granting qualified recipients free vehicle repairs and free vehicles so they can drive to their jobs, travel to medical appointments, take their kids to school, and maintain their overall independence. Read the story about God’s Garage or donate at

Get tickets for the Wise Conference at Visit the Facebook page: for updates on the event.

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