The MOMENTUM continues to build within the WBENC network as we approach the largest event of its kind – the 2023 National Conference!

In this featured article we are honored to share tips and tricks from our 2023 Host Committee and Conference Co-Chairs on how to optimize your efforts at the 2023 National Conference!

Learn more about the 2023 Host Committee and Co-Chairs

Bernadette Milito | Co-Chair | CSS Building Services

“1) Time isn’t money. It’s more important than that.

Go. Get active. Be involved. Do not wait for opportunity to come to you. Optimize your time at the national conference, as it is one of the only places in the world where anyone can sit down with decision makers. So, be prepared. Practice your elevator pitch. Be ready to give it at a moment’s notice. And be your authentic self. Don’t sell something you’re not.

2) It’s not who you know. It’s whom.

Conferences matter. Networking serves as a vital aspect for everything from recruitment to business development. But there’s a catch. Decision makers often skip conferences. They’re just too busy. WBENC is different. Decision makers attend WBENC conferences, putting you at the table with decision makers who actually award contracts. So, WBENC conferences provide absolute value for money. That’s not rhetoric.

At the Atlanta WBENC national conference, CSS made a connection for a multi-million dollar MSA with a Fortune 500 multinational pharmaceutical company. Boom. Still not convinced? We also began a formal relationship with an e-commerce giant and are having extensive conversations, open dialogue, and presentations with their team that could lead to virtually doubling our janitorial revenue. How is that possible? Because decision makers attend WBENC conferences. Shouldn’t you?”

“Put yourself out there! Go to the events with purpose! Come prepared with your elevator speech. Get up early and have breakfast with others. Don’t let yourself be intimated. You own the company, now own the conference!”

Margaret (peggy) Del Fabbro | Co-Chair | M. Davis & Sons, Inc.

“WBE’s should plan ahead and stay focused. Review the conference schedule and formalize how you’ll spend your time in advance. Identify who you want to connect with and make sure you know what value you can provide them. Our team utilizes a spreadsheet listing companies that we want to be sure and connect with to help us stay organized and focused. It’s even color coded!”

Lianne B. Lami | Bocci Engineering LLC

“Decide who you want to meet ahead. Reach out in advance and register. Don’t overwhelm – target a few you can follow-through with follow up. Bring a team or hire a temp from another great WBE to assist you during and after the event with your nurture campaign.”


Janice Bryant Howroyd | Co-Chair | The ActOne Group

“Will what got you here, get you where you want to be? It’s important for all WBE’s to ask themselves this question as they plan for what’s next – whether it’s growth, or a big pivot. The national conference provides women with an opportunity to connect with likeminded entrepreneurs and to learn from them, but as you plan to grow your business, make sure that growth aligns with your values and priorities. “

Nancy Green | Flexability LLC

“Listen and learn from the stories of the women in the room.”




Sandra James | Private Eyes

“Have a plan of who you want to connect with, schedule meetings in advance if you can, follow up with any contacts that you make, make friends and be nice!”



Michele Adams | Levy Recognition

“Plan your time and your goals for what you are looking to achieve at the conference following the SMART principles. Make your conference experience specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time bound.”


Join us in Nashville, TN, for the 2023 WBENC National Conference taking place March 20-23, 2023, at the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center. WBENC, along with our 2023 National Conference Co-Chairs, Bristol Myers Squibb, DuPont, EY, Nissan Group of the Americas, The ActOne Group, Ampcus Inc., CSS Building Services, and M. Davis & Sons, Inc., Host Committee and all of our sponsors, exhibitors and attendees look forward to connecting again in person, building momentum, identifying innovative best practices, learning industry trends and celebrating accomplishments by our WBEs and Corporate Members that further a diverse supply chain and grow business opportunities for women entrepreneurs.