NACOGDOCHES, Texas — A wide range of topics concerning women in leadership, health and wellness, and other women’s issues will be discussed during the fourth annual Women’s Empowerment Summit, hosted by Stephen F. Austin State University’s Office of Multicultural Affairs March 20 in the Baker Pattillo Student Center Twilight Ballroom.

Veronica Beavers, OMA director, is excited to host an event that empowers women and educates the community on issues women face every day.

“During this summit, we want attendees to connect with others who are striving to make an impact, learn professional development skills, discuss the issues women are facing today, learn tips on improving personal wellness and much more,” Beavers said. “Regardless of gender, I believe everyone can benefit from the summit.”

Elena Freeman will kick off the summit as the opening speaker. A mentor, preacher/teacher and leader, Freeman can discuss myriad topics, such as practical life skills, student programming, public speaking, missions, conflict resolution, sex education, parenting and more. Freeman serves as an advocate for community youth programs, safe houses, shelters, prisons and organizations.

The luncheon speaker will be Valerie Henderson, area vice president at SHI, the largest female minority-owned business in the U.S. SHI is a technology consulting firm that employs more than 4,000.

Ebony Smith will close the summit. She is the founder of Yoga N Da Hood, a fast-growing nonprofit dedicated to making wellness accessible to everyone. Smith has taught yoga and mindfulness throughout the world and is an experienced speaker.

Event check in starts at 8:30 a.m. The opening keynote presentation will begin at 9 a.m. followed by a breakout session at 10 a.m. The lunch keynote will take place from 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. and will be followed by two more breakout sessions. The closing speaker session will begin at 2:30 p.m. Breakout session presenters are a mix of faculty, staff and community members.

The event is free and open to the public. Lunch is provided to all who pre-register. Registration is available at The deadline to register is March 13.

For more information, contact the OMA at (936) 468-1073 or