Shiva Bidar to join Annual Women in Leadership Symposium panel on April 20

UW Health Chief Diversity Officer Shiva Bidar will bring her expertise and experience on forging a career path in the contemporary market to the 5th Annual DDEEA/National Diversity Council Women in Leadership Symposium on Thursday , April 20, at Grainger Hall. She will join four regional leaders who will provide insight, tips and mentoring on how to succeed professionally while balancing a career with their personal lives at the highly-rated annual seminar.

Co-hosted by the Office of the Vice Provost and Chief Diversity Officer’s Division of Diversity, Equity & Educational Achievement in partnership with the National Diversity Council, this year’s panel will focus on the theme, “Be Fearless: Influence, Innovate & Inspire.”  Space is limited, register today at

This is the fifth year of the half-day seminar and networking event designed to bring together a diverse mix of successful women in leadership roles. These leaders will discuss topics relevant to today’s issues to educate, inspire and encourage women to reflect on their own goals and status as they strive to advance within their organizations.

UW Health Chief Diversity Officer Shiva Bidar
UW Health Chief Diversity Officer Shiva Bidar

Representing UW-Madison on the symposium panel, Ms. Bidar serves an integrated health system serving 618,000 patients each year in Wisconsin, Northern Illinois and beyond with 1,400 physicians, six hospitals, and 80 outpatient sites. In this capacity, she provides vision, coordination and strategic leadership for the design and implementation of UW Health’s initiatives related to diversity, equity, and inclusion. During her tenure at UW Heath, Ms. Bidar has developed a model interpreter-services program and served as an organization-wide resource on cultural competency and diversity issues.  Ms. Bidar has made significant contributions to our community holding many key roles, including co-chair of the Latino Health Council of Dane County, member of the Madison College Board of Trustees, Madison Community Foundation board member and United Way of Dane County Vision Council member. Ms. Bidar is a founding member and co-chair of the Madison Area Diversity Roundtable, a coalition of employers committed to diversity and inclusionary practices.

Ms. Bidar also serves on the City of Madison Common Council. Elected in 2009, she serves as the Common Council President Pro-Tem and President.  Ms. Bidar is actively engaged in many philanthropic and community based events, holding multiple board appointments and supporting numerous community causes. Her work in the areas of diversity, equity and inclusion has been recognized with numerous honors and awards.

Ms. Bidar earned her bachelor of arts degree at Université du Hainaut, Mons, Belgium, and her master of arts degree at the Monterey Institute of International Studies, Monterey, California. She earned a Certificate in Diversity Management in Health Care (CDM) at the Institute for Diversity in Healthcare/Georgetown University.

In addition to Shiva Bidar, other panelists will include Mayra Medrano, Business Community Service Manager, Madison Gas & Electric, and Valerie Johnson, CEO, Habitat for Humanity of Dane County.  The symposium moderator will be Sara Finger, Executive Director & Founder, Wisconsin Alliance for Women’s Health. 2017 Madison Symposium logo

To address the theme of how to fearlessly influence, innovate and inspire, panelists will share their experiences on the following topics with a series of discussion questions:

  • Transforming the Rules of Engagement;
  • Pioneering Pay Equity: Strategies to Bridge the Gap, Own Your Value and Negotiate Your Worth;
  • Women on the Web: Leveraging Social Media as a Means to Success;
  • Leading with Authenticity: Strategies for Success with Your Own Leadership Style;
  • Switching your Career: When Life Calls for a U-Turn;
  • The Difference “Difference” Makes – Double Minority Leadership;
  • Lifting up the Next Generation Women;
  • Collective vs Competitive Threat: Managing Bullying in the Workplace;
  • Reviving Your Career: Actionable Steps to Achieve a Professional Renaissance;
  • The Power of No: Defining your impact as a leader.

Plan on a lively and informative discussion.

More on the 2017 Women in Leadership Symposium Topics

Transforming the Rules of Engagement: The new rules of engagement demand that we leverage our influence across multiple spheres, including shareholders and employees, to build community around a shared vision. More so than ever, we need to create unconventional relationships and meaningful connections within and beyond our organizations to turn ideas into action. Why are women choosing to adapt the new rules of engagement? Who are the powerful women forging unconventional partnerships and driving change? How are these successful leaders scaling opportunities to ignite lasting change?

Pioneering Pay Equity: Strategies to Bridge the Gap, Own Your Value and Negotiate Your Worth: When women are empowered to lead, they make choices that change history! Why is it then that American women make on average 77 cents for every dollar that a man earns for equal work? As an attendee, you will hear concrete steps to address the pay equity issue, which includes learning to become a powerful and confident salary negotiator. By sharing today’s most successful negotiation strategies, you will learn how to monetize your strength and leverage your potential to create your own value – not only in your paychecks, but also in the position you hold.

Women on the Web: Leveraging Social Media as a Means to Success:  Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Wikis, podcasts, blogs, RSS feeds… Social media has undeniably become ingrained in our personal and professional lives. But what exactly is “social media,” and how can we use it more successfully at work and at home? Learn how to creatively leverage social media to effect change across various industries, in your organization, and in your professional development.

Leading with Authenticity: Strategies for Success with Your Own Leadership Style: Do the accepted management styles within your organization tend to favor certain men or women, or are they not broad enough to accommodate a variety of styles? Women who aspire to leadership positions often are unsure if they should adopt certain management styles or embrace their own. While embracing others’ leadership style leads to discomfort and feels limiting to an individual, not embracing an organization’s accepted style may lead to exclusion and isolation. How do successful leaders strike a balance between their personal leadership style and the leadership style of their organization? How important is authenticity to a having an efficient and successful leadership style? How does an authentic leadership style impact the pipeline and diversity within the organization?

Switching your Career: When Life Calls for a U-Turn: College students change their majors an average of three times before they graduate. With the growing number of majors, from agroecology to homeland security, undergraduates have a difficult time limiting themselves to one field. They may ask themselves: which major reflects my true interests? Which major will help me land that dream job? While a lot of planning may be spent on finding the perfect match, many successful professionals end up in fields they had never anticipated in college. Hear from leading women who made the bold move of switching careers at different stages of their professional development. Why do women make the transition from their degree to the workforce? How do successful women adapt to the workforce and new career opportunities?

The Difference “Difference” Makes – Double Minority Leadership: With one foot in the discussion on race and the other fighting for gender equality, how do minority women cope with the tension of living and working at the intersection of these two identities? Women hold less than 20 percent of leadership positions in the American workforce, and even less are held by women of color. This topic will discuss issues of identity with regard to gender and race, and will address the discourse of equality in the workplace. How can leadership emerge from such a unique women of color perspective? What kinds of challenges do women of color face in the workplace and in their professional development? How does an organization benefit from the inclusion of such leaders in decision-making roles and positions of power?

Lifting up the Next Generation Women: As you climb the corporate ladder it’s incredibly important to remember to throw down a rope. This is especially true for women leaders. Increasingly women recognize that the days of women fighting for the one available executive role are behind us. Rather, women helping women, is a responsibility not a choice. Why must women help other women succeed? What responsibility do we each have in making a difference for those who follow us? How can women leaders provide organizational and personal support?

Collective vs Competitive Threat: Managing Bullying in the Workplace: The discussion of why women bully other women in the workplace has led to an understanding of two types of threats: competitive and collective. A competitive threat is the fear that a highly qualified female candidate might be more competent or accepted in the workplace, potentially displacing a former female. On the other hand, a collective threat is the fear that by accepting a woman with lower qualifications, this person could reinforce negative stereotypes of women in general. How do these types of fears manifest in the workplace? What lessons can we learn from others who have navigated the issue of bullying at work? How can women be more supportive to each other?

Reviving Your Career: Actionable Steps to Achieve a Professional Renaissance: Whether you have stepped off the path you hoped to be on or are returning after a career or work hiatus, this session will look at what you can do to avoid or overcome a plateau, revive your trajectory, and find ways to follow your passion. What are some best practices for transitioning back into work? How can you maintain a record of professional development, despite being on “break?” How can you “catch up” to be competitive in your career of choice?

The Power of No: Defining your impact as a Leader: Power today is all about leveraging influence to engender change. As activists and change-agents, leaders are choosing to align their influence with key global issues, including humanitarian efforts. Learn how to say “no” to conventional practices and follow your own path to make an impact in organizations and the world. How are today’s game-changers tackling problems in unconventional ways in order to amplify the voices of millions around the world? What are these leaders saying “no” to?  What kind of support is needed to be a trail-blazing leader?

Register today, space is limited – please go to