Women in Green Power Luncheon

Date: Thursday, November 15, 2018

Location: McCormick Place

Theme: Leading With Purpose

At the end of the day, it’s not so much about what you do, but about why you do it. Leading with purpose is a journey that starts from within. This year, Women in Green celebrates the power of purpose to shape our lives, our careers and our changing world.

At Women in Green, we will delve into the ways women can lead with purpose to inspire others and drive continued creativity and progress. Let’s go from being relevant, to being revolutionary. Join Us. 


A portion of each ticket purchased to the Women in Green Power Luncheon go to a scholarship fund that provides complimentary, full-access Luncheon tickets to eligible students and emerging professionals. Eligible scholarship recipients will be required to make a strong case for why attending the Luncheon will benefit their professional and personal growth. 

Keynote Speaker: Jessica N. Grounds

Jessica N. Grounds
Founder, Mine the Gap

Jessica N. Grounds has devoted her life to empowering women to become leaders in public life. She has founded and led multiple organizations to advance women in leadership, including Mine the Gap, which equips leaders, industries, and organizations with strategy and tools to create and sustain gender-inclusive work environments.

Leading up to the 2016 presidential election, Jessica served as the Director of Women Ready for Hillary, the grassroots organization that built early support for Hillary Clinton’s campaign for president. Before Ready for Hillary, she was the Executive Director of Running Start, an organization in which she Co-Founded in 2007 that trains and inspires young women to run for elected office.

She completed a graduate program in Women, Policy and Political Leadership at the Women & Politics Institute at American University, and holds a Master’s in Leadership from the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University. She has published cutting-edge research on gender differences in leadership style within Congress, and has completed research on new trends in campaign messaging for women candidates.

This year, Jessica was named a “40 Under 40” recipient by the American Association of Political Consultants Jessica grew up in San Diego, California, and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Pepperdine University. She has lived in Washington, DC since 2003.

Additional Presenter: Annie Perkins

Annie Perkins
Senior Director of Strategic Partnerships, Sustainable Forestry Initiative 

Annie seeks to elevate the use of certified, sustainable forestry products and materials in the green building industry, and raise awareness around the far-reaching value of properly managed forests in society. Her experience in product transparency, certifications, climate change and resiliency, coupled with her passion to improve rural and urban communities globally, supports that mission. As an accredited LEED Green Associate with the U.S. Green Building Council, she sits on the Midwest’s Market Leadership Advisory Board and is engaged with the emerging WELL Standard.

She was contributory in the development of the window industry’s product category rule, followed by the release of the industry’s first environmental product declaration. Additionally, she applies these experiences through civic engagements as a Planning Commissioner in her city, as well as a board member of her local watershed management organization. 

There are hundreds of books, articles and inspiring videos that claim to unlock the secrets to success, but as working women, we know there are no secret formulas and there are no shortcuts. Success is built on dedication, hard work, patience…and purpose. Purpose is a driving force that is built on values and hope, pragmatism and ambition. Purpose provides us with guidance, and when we lead with purpose, we set a clear path for success and an example for others to follow. Leading with purpose is about self-expression and being true to ourselves, standing up for what we know is right and helping others along the way. In times of uncertainty, we turn to our inner sense of purpose to sustain our energy and commitment, to bolster our resilience and push us forward. It is what has always elevated humankind from places of darkness into the light — it shapes cultures, it feeds on curiosity and diversity of thinking, and it asks us to be humble in our continued pursuit of what we believe is right.