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Dallas Women’s Foundation and the Junior League of Dallas (JLD) are hosting hundreds of girls ages 11 to 15 at #BestSelf 2017 on April 29 at Southern Methodist University’s Hughes-Trigg Student Center. A program of Dallas Women’s Foundation’s Leadership Initiative, #BestSelf teaches young women leadership skills, healthy conflict resolution and more, so that they embrace and become their “best selves.” The Foundation’s Leadership Initiative is committed to advancing and increasing the number of women and girls in leadership positions by presenting forums, publishing the voices of women leaders and producing targeted research advocating for women’s leadership.


This year’s event is organized in partnership with the Junior League of Dallas, an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving the community through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers, as part of its 95th anniversary.


Bonner Allen, JLD president, said, "BestSelf is a special way to celebrate our 95th anniversary, as a wonderful reflection of our mission. It is also a demonstration of Dallas Women's Foundation's ripple effect:  the Foundation not only has invested in the Junior League of Dallas and our members for years, but provided this opportunity for us to invest together in the lives of hundreds of girls. The JLD takes great pride in working in partnership with the Foundation on this very meaningful event."


The keynote speaker and emcee is Shanterra McBride, founder of Marvelous University, which offers life coaching and success planning for young people and specializes in leadership development for girls and young women. A popular speaker, she is the author of “Love Your Jiggle: The Girl’s Guide to Being Marvelous.” A native Dallasite, McBride is a first generation college graduate who received two degrees from SMU and a master’s degree in Organizational Leadership from Gonzaga University.

The day includes informative breakout sessions, a tour of SMU and other fun, such as jam sessions. In addition to sessions for the girls, #BestSelf includes sessions for parents and educators, such as how to navigate through difficult situations and how to encourage girls learning about decision-making, as well as how to support their emotional well-being, so that they grow up into strong, confident young women.


Roslyn Dawson Thompson, Dallas Women’s Foundation president and CEO, said, “We envision an equitable society where women and girls are full participants, and we developed #BestSelf as a way to help equip girls with practical skills they need to resolve conflict, learn more about themselves and develop as leaders. It is exciting to hold the event this year in partnership with the Junior League of Dallas, which is itself such a force in leadership development for women throughout our community.”


Dallas Women’s Foundation and Junior League of Dallas are embarking on a social media campaign to promote, share and educate young girls about being their best selves by encouraging them to use the hashtag #bestself and to share positive messages that focus on their unique talents, interests, goals and dreams—their best selves—on their social media channels.


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About Dallas Women’s Foundation:

Dallas Women’s Foundation is the largest regional women’s fund in the world. With the support of its donors, the Foundation unlocks resources to advance women’s economic security and women’s leadership through research, grantmaking and advocacy. The Foundation’s work improves education and quality of life, gives voice to issues affecting women and girls, and cultivates women leaders for the future. Since its founding in 1985, Dallas Women’s Foundation has granted more than $32 million total, and over $4.2 million annually to help create opportunities and solve issues for women and girls. For more information, visit, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn or Twitter


About the Junior League of Dallas:

The Junior League of Dallas cultivates leaders who collectively address the critical needs of the community. Founded in 1922 and now in its 95th year, the JLD is the largest Junior League in the world, as well as the largest and oldest training organization for women in Dallas. Active members range in age from 22 to 49 with nearly 75 percent of women employed outside of the home. The JLD provides leadership opportunities to over 5,000 women each year through more than 26,000 cumulative hours of experiential and formal training. Uniquely member-run, the JLD provides over 100,000 hours in volunteer service and $1 million in funding to area nonprofits each year. For more information, please visit or Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.     

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