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WithIt Sets Industry Educational Conference Agenda

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The Women In Home Furnishings Today (WithIt) annual industry conference is set for August 12-14th, 2008, at the Renaissance Charlotte Suites Hotel in Charlotte, N.C. Registration for the conference has begun, and those attending are encouraged to register early to both save money and ensure their attendance at the Round Table topics of their choice. This year’s theme, “The Future’s In Our Hands,” will be reflected in the conference’s two keynote speakers, Leslie Haskins and Andy Hines. Haskins’ talk, entitled “The fabric of life: Creating something greater,” will discuss how she made her way back to executive leadership after her comfortable life was shattered when she survived the 9/11attacks on the World Trade Center. Haskins is an author, leader and the founder of a non-profit organization who has traveled internationally spreading her remarkable journey of healing and spreading her message of encouragement. She has appeared on Oprah, CNN and the CBS Early Show. Hines, who is a futurist and director of custom projects for Social Technologies, will discuss “The Top 20 Global Trends.” Hines’ background as a leading international futurist for Fortune 500 companies will illuminate the opportunities available to the leaders of tomorrow. Hines’ resume includes Coates & Jarratt, Inc., Dow Chemical and the Kellogg Company. He is also the author of three books on futurism, and has appeared on numerous radio and television programs, including the CBS Early Show. A luncheon panel will follow Hines’ talk, where four senior-level furniture industry executives will interpret the top 20 global trends and how we can apply that knowledge to our industry. The conference also features break-out sessions on Wednesday, August 13th, on topics including “Managing Your Online Reputation” and “What You Need to Know to Make a Win-Win Partnership,” as well as a look at national and international color trends, presented by Benjamin Moore’s Director of Color and Design, Doty Horn. Wednesday afternoon is set aside for round table discussions. Attendees will have 20 topics to choose from for an afternoon of small table interactive discussions moderated by industry experts on a variety of topics. Attendees are encouraged to choose the four topics that are most closely relevant to their business and interests. Topics are available on a first-come, first-served basis, so early registration is critical. On Tuesday, August 12th, the WithIt Conference will present two hands-on pre-conference workshops that feature an emphasis on doing, practicing and getting questions answered by experts. “Reading and Interpreting Financial Statements” is a half-day seminar designed to help attendees “talk the talk,” interpret financial data and use that data to develop actionable strategies that will positively impact their bottom line. “Coaching for Executive Performance,” presented by Certified Professional Coach Roseanne Amoils, will emphasize proven strategies for integrating a greater level of success in senior level techniques and managing employees. The WithIt conference is also the setting for the annual WOW awards, which recognize business leaders who have contributed to the success of the home furnishings industry each year. Awards include the Legacy Award, Mentoring Award, Education Award and Future Leader Award. The 2008 WOW Awards dinner will be held on Wednesday, August 13th, and is included in the conference registration fee. Early registration fees before June 15th are $175 for members, $350 for non-members and $75 for students. After June 15th, prices go up to $225 for members, $425 for non-members and $125 for students. Those registering by June 15th will also have a chance to win an iPod Touch. To register, or for more information, go to www.withit.org.

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