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Bedford Mayor Shawna Girgis To Be Keynote Speaker At Event
Updated May 5, 2013 1:11 AM
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(BLOOMINGTON) - The City of Bloomington Commission on the Status of Women will hold a women's leadership event from 5 to 7:30 p.m. on March 5 at City Hall.

This year's theme is "Civic Engagement: Keep Calm and Make a Difference." There is no fee or registration required to participate in the event.

This year's keynote speaker will be City of Bedford Mayor Shawna Girgis.

The evening will begin with a 5 p.m. reception during which participants can enjoy refreshments, network and learn more about getting involved with local agencies and the City's boards and commissions. A grassroots workshop focusing on equality, a panel discussion about civic engagement, and the presentation of the 2013 Emerging Leader award to Shelli Yoder will follow the reception.

The 2013 Emerging Leader, Shelli Yoder, first caught the public's attention after filing as a candidate for the 9th Congressional District race.

She inspired thousands within the community, men and women alike, with her plans to help build a stronger state and nation. While the race was Yoder's first foray into politics, she has a long history of public service.

Throughout her professional career - from her time as the Executive Director of the Eating Disorders Coalition of Tennessee to her time as the Director of Hannah's House for Girls in Mishawaka, Ind., - she has been focused on women's issues.

Yoder currently serves at Indiana University's Kelley School of Business as a Visiting Lecturer in Business Communications and Professionalism. She formerly served on the board of the Monroe County NAACP.

Keynote speaker Shawna Girgis is the first woman and first Independent to serve as Bedford's mayor.

She began her first term in January 2008 and was re-elected to a second term that began in January 2012. Girgis is a graduate of Indiana University, where she earned both a bachelor's and master's degree in social work.

She moved to Lawrence County with her husband, Dr. Kamal Girgis, when he began his practice in internal medicine.

For six years Girgis served a 21-county region as director of the Hoosier Uplands Economic Development Corporation's Southeast/South Central Area Health Education Center located in Mitchell, Ind. She served as the Executive Director of the Indiana Rural Health Association (IRHA) from 2005 through 2007 and also served on the organization's board of directors for four years.

Her most notable accomplishment during her tenure at IRHA was the development of the Indiana Telehealth Network.

In addition to her professional roles and responsibilities, she is the proud mother of 12-year-old Vonya, 10-year-old Ramzi and 6-year-old Zahra.

Co-sponsors of the women's leadership event include the City's Commission on the Status of Women, Department of Community and Family Resources and Office of the Clerk, as well as Girls Inc. of Monroe County and Middle Way House. For more information contact Sue Owens at

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