The Women Is Business Leadership Panel, hosted by Nikki West of 104.3 WOW Country and Michelle Heart of 107.9 LITE-FM on Wednesday, March 31st, is an opportunity for Treasure Valley entrapeanurs and business-minded folks to learn tips and tricks of breaking into what is Idaho's quickest rising business sector; women owned businesses!

We're announcing two of our special guests that will be featured during our panel.

If you would like to attend the Women In Business Leadership Panel, you can learn more here, or just sign up in the easy entry form below!


Brought to you in partnership with Idaho News



  • © Pete Grady 2013
    © Pete Grady 2013

    Diane Bevan

    IWBC Executive Director

    Diane Bevan serves as the Executive Director of the Idaho Women’s Business Center and CEO of the Idaho Hispanic Foundation. Diane has built her career on making connections and building business. She started her first business in high school designing and sewing prom dresses and has been an ongoing entrepreneur in some capacity. With a Communications / Public Relations background, she has used her combined skills to create multiple businesses in 4 states . As the first CEO of the Idaho Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in 2017, her mission was to bridge cultures and communities. In 2018, she founded the Idaho Hispanic Foundation,(501c3) and remains its CEO. In 2019, she was awarded the Women Business Center grant from the SBA and now serves as the Executive Director bringing education, training and business development to women across Idaho. She is Board member for the Association of Women's Business Centers, Idaho Foodbank and Valley Regional Transit. She is a 2019 and 2020 Idaho Business Review top 50 Women of the Year. She is in her 4th year as a Commissioner for Meridian Development Corporation Urban Renewal Agency. She has resided in Idaho for over 14 years with her husband of 30+ years and their 4 children. 

    One of my earliest mantras (seriously like 12 years old)

    “Pick Up the Pace, or Get Out of My Way!”

    It initially started on a young women hike and I wanted to go faster up the mountain. I sang it over and over to those in front of me. I was a basketball and track athlete and am sure at that time my motive was sheerly to get to the top first.

    My mom reminded me many times that my stamina to push forward was ingrained in my personality. We all have a pace that we hike in life. But for me to grow, or in this case hike faster I needed to remove obstacles that were holding me back. Later, I had the opportunity to teach this lesson to a group of teens as we sung this mantra while running up a mountain. It was magnanimous.  There is a time to follow and a time to lead. Now is the time for women to pick up the pace and lean in to moving forward. There has never been a greater time for this to happen.

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    Linda Swanstrom

    Executive Director for the Idaho State Dental Association

    Linda Swanstrom is the Executive Director for the Idaho State Dental Association, representing dentists across the state of Idaho. Linda graduated of the University of Idaho where she majored in accounting, and later earned her MBA from The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business. Her career has included experience in a number of disciplines and industries including twenty-one years with Hewlett-Packard where she held a variety of leadership positions and served in global positions for the majority of her tenure. Linda has been the director of the Idaho State Dental Association for the past six and a half years and is part of the leadership team for her peers at the national level. She also serves as a member of the board and treasurer for the Idaho Oral Health Alliance. Through her state and national roles, she influences policies that promote improvement of and access to oral health. Linda and her husband Troy are celebrating their 25th anniversary this year, and have two amazing children, Alexa and Dan.

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    Carrie Westergard

    Executive Director of the Boise Convention & Visitors Bureau

    Carrie Westergard is the Executive Director of the Boise Convention & Visitors Bureau, a position she has held for six years.

    She is responsible for overseeing, planning and directing the operations and programming for the Boise CVB, whose mission is to enhance Boise’s economy through the marketing, promotion and selling of the city and region as a site for conventions, corporate meetings, trade shows, leisure travel, cultural, sports and special events. The Boise CVB has drawn larger conventions and more sporting events than ever in the city’s history.

    Boise is often featured in national press. Under Westergard’s leadership the Boise CVB has grown both its staff and financial resources.

    Westergard’s 30-year tenure in the travel industry includes stints with resorts, property management, public transportation and visitor bureaus. In 2016, she was one of Idaho Business Review’s, Women of the Year honorees and a graduate from Leadership Boise (2018).

    Westergard is also an avid lover of the arts, Idaho recreation and exploration.

    Read More: Women In Business Leadership Panel: Our Speakers |

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    Tressa McLaughlin

    The Solv Group

    I am a customer-focused CEO and print industry Leader who develops new business models, sustainable practices, strategic partnerships and customer experiences that meet evolving market needs and provide significant value. I’ve driven progress throughout my career, developing compelling brands and marketing collateral, introducing emerging technology, streamlining workflows, reducing costs, leading culture change and identifying strategic opportunities. I possess an entrepreneurial spirit that has fueled startup and acquisition of companies and fostered key business development.

    I believe that happy employees produce happy customers and, therefore, commit extensive time and energy to hiring top talent, building a positive company culture, leveraging team member strengths and providing professional development opportunities. This effort has been acknowledged through multiple “Best Places to Work” awards, strong employee retention and 100% 5-star customer reviews on Google and Facebook.

    Achiever | Responsibility | Learner | Arranger | Positivity

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