Service to University and Community: Goal 5


Increase speaking engagements to diverse audiences.

I’ve never been a natural public speaker. I grew up shy and awkward and was more comfortable behind the scenes than in front of the crowd. If you would have told me in middle school that I’d be speaking to large crowds of people all over the country, well, I’d have laughed in your face. Teaching in higher education for thirteen years has prepared me for larger speaking engagements outside of the classroom. For years, I thought I had nothing to say. I taught from the textbook and created engaging exercises and activities for students. I stuck to the syllabus and wrote copious notes to myself. I never understood how my experiences could translate to the larger public until I started expanding my reach outside of the classroom.

Last year my husband and I served as pastors in a local church that was going through transition. He had served in this capacity before, but I had not. I have always had a strong faith, but nothing tests that faith like having to profess it and teach from it on a weekly basis. I started to realize how my faith dovetailed into my research and teaching on business ethics. I saw how my parenting impacted my leadership, both in and out of the classroom. I started to receive invitations to speak on a variety of faith-based and academic topics when I started digging into the Winona community outside of the business realm. It convinced me to expand my speaking and teaching and start accepting invitations to speak on a broader scale.

I added this section because I’ve learned that speaking to a diverse audience (outside of business academia) has improved my ability to connect with people at a deeper level. Some are faith-based and some are secular, but all have contributed to my ability to influence, motivate and reach a larger audience on a local, regional and national level.


I spoke at the Splendid Retreat in Green Lake, WI on the subject of being Strong in the Broken Places (October) and the Splendid in the Hills Retreat in Austin, TX in a similar topic (April).

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I spearheaded a faith-based women’s event called IF:Winona with a team of local women from various churches in town. We hosted 220 women in Pleasant Valley Church over a two-day period in February.

jana on stage edited


I was invited to speak to Kern JROTC on Alumni Leadership Day at Bakersfield High School (my alma mater) in Bakersfield, CA on how my experiences in the JROTC unit and how my career started right there (April)


I was the keynote speaker for Winona area college ministry Dinner For The Ladies. 440 college women in attendance (April)





Increase speaking engagements to diverse audiences.


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