Registration Now Open! WBDC 2024 Midwest Business Conference 9.12.24 Register Today


SEPTEMBER 12, 2024


Hyatt Regency O’Hare Rosemont, Illinois

Get Ready for the WBDC’s 2024 Midwest Business Conference!

Come to the Women’s Business Development Center’s 2024 Midwest Business Conference to accelerate your business growth in multiple ways!

You won’t want to miss the dynamic Business Connections Center, where you can explore a range of opportunities for contracts and collaborations, as well as supportive programs and services.

Take maximum advantage of the Digital Learning Center, featuring interactive demonstrations of technology software and tools that help drive business growth by increasing external sales and internal operations.

You’ll also experience a fast-paced, insightful, and engaging keynote session with Laughter on Call and a festive finale Reception with delicious food, signature drinks, and live music.

And our enticing Galleria Marketplace with premier products sold by women entrepreneurs will be open the entire day!

Opening Session Speakers

Emilia DiMenco

WBDC President and CEO

Sandra Rand

WBDC Board Chair
Retired Director of Supplier Diversity United Airlines

Dani Klein Modisett

Laughter on Call Founder and CEO

Dani has a few words to say about why you won’t want to miss this year’s Conference.

Hear from Dani below!

Event Schedule

12:00 PM-6:30 PM Galleria Marketplace

A festive marketplace with premier products sold by women entrepreneurs.

Information regarding participating Galleria Marketplace vendors to follow!

Location: Grand Foyer

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM Alumni Reunion

An exclusive, invitation only WBDC program alumni gathering for reconnecting, making new connections, and knowledge sharing.

Location: Grand Ballroom D


1:00 PM - 2:00 PM WBE Meetup

An exclusive, invitation only gathering for WBENC-certified WBEs to mix and mingle.

Location: Grand Ballroom E

2:00 PM - 3:00 PM Opening Session

Welcome Remarks and Keynote Performance

  • Welcome from Emilia DiMenco, WBDC President and CEO
  • Welcome from Sandra Rand, WBDC Board Chair and Retired Director of Supplier Diversity, United Airlines
  • Keynote performance by Laughter on Call
    • Keynote Dani Klein Modisett and her company “Laughter on Call”  are on a mission to bring laughter–and its physical, mental, and performance benefits–to your business. According to research from such esteemed institutions as Wharton, MIT, and London Business School, “every chuckle or guffaw brings with it a host of business benefits,” writes Alison Beard in the Harvard Business Review article, “Leading with Humor.” Dani and her team will show how humor and positivity are powerful tools that you can use every day to boost your business and enhance your life. Laughter relieves stress, enhances morale and engagement, and spurs not only communication, connection, and collaboration, but also analytic precision and productivity, so don’t miss this chance to laugh and learn!

Location: Grand Ballroom ABC


3:00 PM - 5:00 PM Digital Learning Center

A robust learning center in a trade show format featuring interactive demonstrations of technology software and tools to help drive business growth, both external sales and internal operations.

Technology Tools to Increase External Sales

Demonstration Stations:

  • Canva (Graphic Design)
  • Constant Contact (Email Marketing)
  • Hootsuite (Social Media Management and Metrics)
  • Google Search Engine Optimization (Visibility of Website on Search Engines)
  • Google Business Profile (Manage Business Online Presence)
  • LinkedIn Sales Navigator (E-commerce)
  • Shopify (E-commerce)
  • Amazon (E-commerce)

Technology Tools to Enhance Internal Operations

Demonstration Stations:

  • Client Relationship Manager
  • Password Manager
  • Cybersecurity Training
  • AI | Chatbots
  • Tableau (Data Visualization)
  • Asana, Acuity, ZenHub (Project management and scheduling)
  • QuickBooks (Accounting)

Location: Grand Ballroom DE

3:00 PM - 5:00 PM Business Connections Center

A dynamic business center for both business opportunities and business support. Come explore opportunities with corporate and WBE representatives across diverse industry clusters, as well as collaborations with other participating business owners. And take advantage of the opportunity to gain valuable information and insights from our resource partners who provide a range of small business programs and services. Information regarding corporate, WBE, and resource partner table hosts to follow!

Location: Grand Ballroom FGH

5:00 PM - 6:30 PM Networking Reception

A finale reception where you can mix and mingle with fellow women business owners, private and public sector executives, and community partners while enjoying a light dinner buffet, drinks, and live jazz.

Location: Grand Foyer

Music provided by:


Hotel Rooms, Parking, and Transportation

Room Blocks

For those who wish to stay overnight at the Hyatt, we have a block of rooms available at a discounted rate of $249 per night. Please click here to learn more and book your stay.


To enter the Hyatt’s self-park garage, turn off River Road onto Bryn Mawr Avenue. At the end of Bryn Mawr Avenue at the dead end, turn left to enter the Hyatt covered garage. Do not turn right or you’ll be in the covered garage for the Stephens Convention Center.

The Hyatt also has an outdoor parking lot.

Valet parking is not available.

The discounted parking cost for conference attendees is $17, for both daily and overnight self-parking. Conference attendees not staying overnight will need their parking ticket validated by WBDC staff at the Parking Validation table to use the discount. Any overnight guests should bring their parking ticket to the front desk, which will be validated during check-in and provide in and out parking access.


The Hyatt is conveniently located less than a mile away from the Rosemont CTA Blue Line station.

The Hyatt offers complimentary shuttle service to and from O’Hare International Airport, running every 15 minutes from 4:00 am-midnight and every 30 minutes from midnight-4:00 am.


Thank You to Our Sponsors!

Current Sponsors:

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