Women's Conference

2nd Annual Women’s Conference

Theme – “Gather Round”

February 5th 2022

We invite you to join us for our 2nd Annual ICLF Women’s Conference. We were unable to host this event in 2021 due to COVID-19 but we did honor St. Brigid in February.
The theme is “Gather Round” and the day will celebrate St. Brigid with inspirational keynote speakers and panelists, networking and learning opportunities, along with the return of the popular Mna na hEireann panel.
The event is brought to you in alignment with the Irish Government Diaspora Strategy and is co-hosted by our ICLF ESP Committee.
The outline for the day along with bios for our speakers and panelists is below.
If you would like to host a table in the Clos for your crafts and/or business please contact Lynn Cosgrove at lynn.cosgrove@azirish.org
If you would like to be part of the photo exhibit please contact Geraldine Follmer at gcfollmer@gmail.com


930am: Gates open, light breakfast, networking

950am: Welcome

10am: Opening Keynote

1030am: Keep Wandering Out Loud Overview

11am: Track 1

Noon: Lunch, networking

1pm: Track 2 

2pm: Mna na hEireann Panel

3pm: Closing Keynote

330pm: Bar, Networking, Sean Nos Singing, Shopping

All Day: Women of AZ photo exhibit, Library exhibit, Crafts, Business

Tracks: KWOL, Women of the World, Irish Women Writers

The conference is also supporting local Arizona organization “Go With The Flow” by accepting donations of feminine hygiene products on the day of.

Get your tickets

Members $40
Non-Member $50
$10: 18-26 with proof of age
$10: Business, craft, speakers, panelists, volunteers

Participants/Speakers of the Day

Leslie Thompson is our MC for the day. She is also representing the ICLF Board of Trustees at the event. She is originally from Dublin Ireland but now lives in Chandler. All of her Irish family is based in Wicklow and Dublin. She joined the Intel Ireland team in 1993 and in 1995 she took an assignment at Intel’s Chandler location. She is currently the Program Manager for People Systems in the Internet of Things group. She has MC’d and coordinated many events for technical learning and the Women of Intel Network. She loves singing and playing guitar and is passionate about her daughter’s Rodeo events.

Dr. Adrienne Leavy is a panelist on our Mna na hErieann panel today. She is the editor and publisher of Reading Ireland, a digital journal of Irish literature and culture. She has published numerous interviews with Irish writers in Reading Ireland and her essays on Irish literature have appeared in various publications, most recently in A History of Irish Modernism (Cambridge University Press, 2019). She is currently editing a collection of essays on the Irish poet Thomas Kinsella for Wake Forest University Press which will be published in 2022.

Christine O’Leary is a panelist on our Mna na hErieann panel today. She is originally from Mullagh Co. Clare Ireland and now lives in Gilbert.  She joined Intel in Arizona in 1997 after coming to Arizona in 1996. Currently Christine is a Process and Data Architect in IT Product Engineering. Her spare time is spent traveling and exploring new restaurants.  Christine also volunteers with the Phoenix Refugee community.

KeepWOL, which stands for Keep Wondering Out Loud, is a game software and communication methodology that uses laughter, empathy, and structured communal sharing to subtly uncover connection and overcome vulnerability to nurture inclusion, create unity, and maximize cultural intelligence.

Founder and Creator Lauren Fitzpatrick Shanks (left) and KeepWOL’s Director of Connection, Stephanie Barron Hall (right), will host a fun and immersive experience using KeepWOL’s Path’s Traveled game. This game embraces differences and allows participants to understand how everyone’s unique story impacts how they think, interact with others, and develop. It fosters compassion and genuine connection amongst any group.

Denise Ryan was born and raised on the Navajo Reservation and she is presenting our “Women of the World” portion of todays event.  She then graduated from Dartmouth College and returned to AZ to attend the ASU College of Law.  Denise also attended the National University of Ireland, Galway, during which time she met her husband, Jason Ryan who hails from Clare, and they are parents to 5 “Nav-Irish” children.  Denise has worked for the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community for over 14 years as a Deputy Prosecutor and most recently as a Deputy Defense Attorney, specializing in Child Welfare Law and criminal law. Her hobbies include reading, running, volunteering, drinking too much coffee, and throwing heavy things in the Scottish Highland Games which she has competed in for over 20 years. 

Doreen Nanibaa McPaul is one of our keynote speaker as part of our program today. She was born and raised on the Navajo Nation. She is Kinyaa’áanii (Towering House clan), and born for Bilagáanaa (white person). Navajo culture is matrilineal, so Doreen gets her primary clan from her mom, Dottie Francis Hobson. Her dad, Arthur Kerr Hobson Jr., is a dual citizen of Ireland and the United States, and he grew up on the Navajo reservation. 
She is a graduate of Princeton University and earned her law degree from Arizona State University College of Law.  She is currently the Navajo Nation’s 12th Attorney General. In that capacity, she serves as the Nation’s Chief Legal Officer and oversees the Department of Justice.
She is very active in the legal community.  She serves on the State Bar of Arizona’s Board of Governors and as a Board member of the American Indian Law Center.  Most recently, she was elected as a member of the American Law Institute.  She is a founding board member and current president of the Tribal In-House Counsel Association.
Above all, Doreen is a proud military spouse and mom.  She is married to SFC Mark McPaul (retired) and they have three sons.