WiM SUMMIT 10-year Anniversary: Why I Have Been to All Nine!

Posted By: Joyce Swanke Blog,

By: Joyce Swanke (second from left), WiM Colorado Chair,

with her team on a plant tour at Leprino Foods

Why Participate in the WiM SUMMIT?

About 10 years ago at this time, I heard about the new Women in Manufacturing organization, and decided to attend the first ever WiM SUMMIT. Since then, I have made sure not to miss any of them. So, why would you want to participate?


Networking is the number one reason I keep coming back for more! It has simply been invaluable to have the opportunity to network with other women who have chosen manufacturing as a career. I have met women who have influenced me, leading to friendships or mentorships. One of the most rewarding SUMMIT experiences was inviting a young woman to join me in the concierge lounge at the hotel instead of going out with a larger group to dinner – we discussed both her career and personal life – and I shared some of my stories/experiences. The following year, she came back to the conference and tracked me down to share news of what she had achieved at work and personally.

Quality speakers

The speakers are always compelling. Whether it is a woman who has become CEO sharing her story, an anchorwoman teaching us how to present ourselves professionally, an operations manager sharing insights on time management, or a PhD sharing how she helped develop 3D printing technology – the quality and professionalism are always top notch.

Breadth of topics

I really enjoy the breadth of topics. The event starts with a day of plant tours – it is always difficult to choose between all the interesting options. Once the conference begins, the content ranges from leadership to manufacturing technologies to softer skills such as storytelling. There is something applicable for everyone, at any time in their career.


And, the best for last - fun. There are organized activities for networking and fun such as the welcome reception, travelling dinners, and the silent auction. However, one of my best memories is going out in Nashville, running into groups of women from the conference at different venues – all of us enjoying ourselves, listening to music, dancing, and taking photos.

Together, let’s make the WiM SUMMIT 10-year anniversary the best yet! I’m excited to support the @WomeninMFG #WiMSUMMIT – please join us in Cleveland, OH or virtually. To register, click the link.

Pictured: Taylor Kenney, Joyce Swanke, Lisa Kent, and Ariel Nolte

at the 2019 SUMMIT in Denver, CO representing Nextworld at their booth.