Women Learn to Face Adversity at Leadership Conference

LAS VEGAS -- More than 700 women from around the country are in Las Vegas this week to be inspired by a leadership conference.

The women said they are learning from each other from the adversities they have had to overcome. The conference is being held at the MGM Grand.

For Lee Woodruff, the wife of journalist Bob Woodruff, their family was forced to be in the public eye when Bob was critically injured in a roadside bomb attack six years ago.

"You got 2 choices when bad things happen: You can get bitter or you can get better," Lee Woodruff said.

CBS news contributor and author Lee Woodruff was the keynote speaker at the Las Vegas Women's Leadership Conference.

"No matter what life throws at us, we are resilient," she said.

The theme of survival also rang true for Phyllis James, who spoke of her battle against racism and sexism as a young African-American lawyer.

"What a demonstration of collected women power," said James, a senior vice president and senior executive for MGM Resorts International. "Opportunities (don't) just walk up to us and say, ‘Here I am.' We have to seek it out.

"We may have come a long way, baby, but we still have miles to go to reach full gender equality in our society."

Conference attendee Ruby MacBride said she is looking for inspiration as she starts a new career as a nurse in her 50s. She said she is finding strength through other women's success.

"Whatever your dreams are, go for it," she said. "Just do it."

A piece advice repeated at the conference: Find a mentor and make the best of every situation.

"You can't rewind the tape, so you take the cards that you are dealt," Lee Woodruff said. "Here we are in Vegas with cards and you play them."

Nevada First Lady Kathleen Sandoval also spoke at the conference, applauding women in the military along with military wives for their sacrifices for the nation.


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