Entrepreneur Mikaila Ulmer

Entrepreneur Mikaila Ulmer, 17, is the keynote speaker for this year’s “I Matter: Girls Empowerment Conference.” She launched an apparel company at 9 and has appeared on “Shark Tank.”

Seeking to inspire young girls to pursue their dreams and educate them on becoming successful and powerful women in a global society, Los Angeles County Parks will host the seventh annual “I Matter: Girls Empowerment Conference” from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 9, at three LA County areas.

Themed “Girls with Dreams Become Women with Vision,” this year’s conference will provide attendees the opportunity to meet and hear from powerful women innovators, educators and trailblazers; attend educational and fun-filled breakout sessions; connect with their peers; receive SWAG bags; and show off their dance moves during a DJ-powered lunchtime dance party. The free event is open to young women ages 12 to 18. 

This year’s keynote speaker is Mikaila Ulmer, the 17-year-old entrepreneur who launched her own company, Me & the Bees Lemonade, at age 9, then staged a successful appearance on the reality TV series “Shark Tank” in 2015.

Conference breakout sessions will focus on empowering girls to use their voice for change and build upon their individual vision for success. Workshops include “Women in Tech,” which will teach girls how they can help to close the gender gap in the technology industry, and “Delete the Divide,” which will provide girls with training, technical certifications, scholarships and employment opportunities.  

Career exploration, pathways to college and career, and sports and dance workshops are also scheduled. 

“We are honored to host the ‘I Matter: Girls Empowerment Conference,’ which will encourage young women to use their voice to live a life full of endless possibilities,” LA County Parks Director Norma Edith Garcia-González said. “It is extremely important to empower today’s young women so that we may have a future where all people have room to succeed, regardless of their gender.” 

“I Matter: Girls Empowerment Conference” is free, but registration is limited. Enrollment is open at all three conference locations: Earvin Magic Johnson Park, 905 El Segundo Boulevard, Los Angeles; Loma Alta Park, 3330 Lincoln Avenue, Altadena; and Hacienda Heights Community Center, 1234 Valencia Avenue, Hacienda Heights.

Because of COVID-19 protocols, all participants must be masked while indoors and physical distancing will be mandated. Parents do not attend the conference, as this is an event solely for girls ages 12 to 18.  

For more information, including transportation options, visit the 2021 Girls Empowerment Conference website at https://parks.lacounty.gov/gec2021.