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Herriman Journal

‘Look Good, Feel Good’ conference focuses on inclusion for Pacific Islander women

Feb 29, 2024 12:23PM ● By Peri Kinder

More than 70 women attended the first “Look Good, Feel Good” conference for Pacific Islander women at Hale Centre Theatre in Sandy. The event celebrated women of the PI community.

The inaugural “Look Good, Feel Good” conference, held in February at Hale Centre Theatre in Sandy, was organized to empower Pacific Islander women in Utah. In partnership with the Creative Pacific Foundation, the Women’s Executive Alliance held the event to celebrate women of the PI community through education and connection. 

La Wolfgramm serves as president of the WEA, the women in business arm of the Utah Pacific Islander Chamber of Commerce, that just celebrated its first anniversary. As the owner of Pasifika Kitchen, Wolfgramm wanted to bring women together and provide a fun environment where they could learn about holistic empowerment, covering physical and mental health, hair and fashion.

“We started WEA because we felt that there was nothing out there for PI women,” she said. “I wanted our PI women to see that there’s someone that looks like them, that talks like them and walks like them. It’s a comfort thing to know they can come in, and if they want to, they can start a business.”

The “Look Good, Feel Good” event marked the first time Utah PI experts in food, health, entertainment and fashion joined together in one place to offer support and information.

Guest speakers included Aveda beauty and hair expert Ben Powell, “Project Runway” designer Afa Ah Loo, mental health expert Celia Moleni (owner of Manaaki Mental Health) and wellness expert Alex Millions, RN, (owner of ModeRN Hydraesthetics). The conference ended with a keynote address from Sui Lang L. Panoke, senior vice president of culture at Zions Bank. 

In addition to workshops, the event featured a DJ, a 360-degree photo booth, catered food and mocktails.

Analei Samasei’a serves on the WEA board of directors. She wants PI women to understand that they belong in these spaces and that what they contribute to the community has value. 

“A lot of our women are caretakers. They stay home with their families, they take care of their aunties or uncles or mothers or fathers. That’s what we inherently do in our culture,” Samasei’a said. “So they’re not always available to go to these types of events, nor do they have accessibility. But now, we have all these experts here in the room. They were all mingling together and asking questions.”

Partnering with Creative Pacific allowed WEA to host the “Look Good, Feel Good” conference with a focus on inclusion while strengthening bonds between PI women. Creative Pacific is a nonprofit that celebrates cultural diversity. 

For information about WEA and the Utah Pacific Islander Chamber of Commerce visit 

Upichamber.org. To learn about Creative Pacific, visit CreativePacific.org. 

“We had a mental health expert who walked us through some exercises to connect back to ourselves and understand the sensations we were feeling and how our thoughts determine actions. It was like a good therapy session,” Samasei’a said. “And so it unified everybody in that room. We’ve all shared this experience together, and now we can talk about it to our friends.” λ


NeuroHealth

 

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