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Former first daughters Barbara Bush, Jenna Bush Hager speak at Women’s Leadership Conference in Myrtle Beach

Former first daughters Barbara Bush, left, and Jenna Bush Hager, right, spoke at a women's conference Tuesday in Myrtle Beach. (Source: WMBF News) Former first daughters Barbara Bush, left, and Jenna Bush Hager, right, spoke at a women's conference Tuesday in Myrtle Beach. (Source: WMBF News)

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - The Eighth Annual Women’s Leadership Conference and Celebration of Inspiring Women wrapped up Tuesday at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center.

Women from all walks of life gathered together to not only educate women, but challenge them to be the best they can be.

This event is hosted by Coastal Carolina University's Women in Philanthropy and Leadership (WIPL). This year, it kicked off with former first daughters Barbara Pierce Bush and Jenna Bush Hager.

The sisters talked about the book they wrote together called “Sisters First: Stories from Our Wild and Wonderful Life.” It reflects on their life growing up and how lucky they are to have a sisterhood and a bond that they will share for eternity.

Terri DeCenzo, executive director of Women in Philanthropy and Leadership for CCU, said her theme for this year was sisterhood, so it was a perfect way to start the conference.

A key message that was consistent throughout the conference was that sisterhood isn’t just blood-related, but much broader. It is mentorship, friends and colleagues.

“Well it’s important to have women in conversations of leadership across every area," DeCenzo said. "So that is why we do it. We are underrepresented in almost every area in government, in technology, and when we are 51 percent of the population and not being heard, it’s really important to come together and respond as women. And this has been an incredible year with the “Me Too” movement and all the sexual harassment. I think it’s important for us to recognize that we have to continue to leave our footprint and change the world.”

“The most important thing is to just not see limits,” said Cara Brookins, keynote speaker and author. “To set enormous goals and leap for them and not be constrained by what society has put on us as women or what we have put on ourselves and to just live our lives with no limits.”

The purpose of the Women's Leadership Conference is to educate, motivate and challenge women to make positive changes in their lives, their communities and the world.

“We are fostering an area of vulnerability and honesty, and I think that kind of trust in other people is really valuable and that’s when we're really going to open up and know what each other’s struggles are and how we can help each other,” said Julia Landauer, keynote speaker and NASCAR champion.  

In the wake of the “Me Too” movement and the sexual harassment allegations sparking across the nation, Landauer said this is a crucial year for women.

“There has been a lot, culturally, that has been really relevant to our empowerment success. So, to hear different perspectives is really exciting and it’s great to see the energetic crowd that’s here today,” Landauer said.

Copyright 2018 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

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