A summit for experienced and emerging leaders

March 6 – 8, 2019
Hyatt Regency Savannah, Savannah, GA

“Success isn’t about the end result; it’s about what you learn along the way.”  –  Vera Wang

A new journey is about to begin. As the pace of our industry ebbs and flows, we recognize the opportunity for new voices, relatable stories and new perspectives.

At the 2019 Women in Textiles Summit we’re gathering some of the brightest leaders in the textiles industry to share, grow and create like never before.  We will explore creative approaches to current challenges and inspire forward thinking that happens when we ask what we want personally, professionally and for the industry as a whole.

Register Now Group registration

**If you are registering 3+ individuals from your company, contact us directly as you may be eligible for a discount.**


Schedule at a Glance

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

4 – 7 pm Registration
5 – 7 pm Welcome Reception

Thursday, March 7, 2019

7:30 am Registration Open
8 – 9 am Breakfast
9 – 10:15 am

Patti Bates is an industry icon. Her participation in IFAI, USIFI, Textiles and Apparel Chapter of the Industry Trade Advisory Committee and Glen Raven’s mentorship program show not only her dedication but her determination. By sharing her personal and professional experiences she cultivates creative approaches to current challenges and inspires forward thinking. Her expertise in navigating the industry, balancing priorities and valuable mentoring will set the stage for a remarkable summit experience.

10:15 – 10:45 am

Kathie Leonard, President/CEO of Auburn Manufacturing, Inc.

Join Kathie Leonard as she shares her story about dealing with Chinese dumping in her market and how her leadership in taking action changed the entire landscape of her market.

11 – 11:45 am

Justine Decaens, M.Sc.A, Head of Technological Innovation – Smart Textiles

The start-up culture is emerging as textile manufacturers have begun diversifying and differentiating by leveraging smart textiles. This culture is driving a new mentality and providing leadership roles for women. Discover what new opportunities exist in this industry transformation by joining Justine.

Noon – 1:15 pm

Mentoring can be a powerful tool for both the mentor and mentee. Participate in active discussions on peer to peer mentoring, how to find a mentor, how to be a mentee, generational differences, setting and managing expectations.

1:30 – 2:30 pm

Denise Offray, President & CEO of OTEX Specialty Narrow Fabrics
Kathie Leonard, President/CEO of Auburn Manufacturing, Inc.
Jane Johnson, Government Affairs Manager, Unifi Manufacturing, Inc.

Trailblazers persevere in the face of uncertain success. Hear stories of career victories, struggles and strategies for navigating the business world from a diverse group of industry-leading women and discover tangible, actionable advice for how you can grow your business.

2:30 – 3 pm

Denise Offray, President & CEO of OTEX Specialty Narrow Fabrics​
Timothy Offray, Executive Vice President – Business Operations

Join Denise and Tim Offray as they discuss challenges and changes implemented in their multi-generation family business in order to move forward with continued success.

3:15 – 4:15 pm

This is your chance to pick the brains of industry leaders and peers and share your own insights. Explore the impact of industry changes, share resources for professional growth, brainstorm how to find and retain new talent and more!

4:15 – 4:30 pm Closing Remarks
6 – 8 pm Reception/Dinner

Friday, March 8, 2019

8 – 9 am Breakfast
9 – 10 am

Wendy McBay, VP of Marketing, Tensar
Robin Ritz, Creative Visionary, InCord
Sara Beatty, President, White Haven Trade

Work and life demands are not predictable. Work has deadlines, families have crises. There are many different approaches to creating harmony and negotiating balance. Listen in and discover a few new ideas for forming, implementing and enforcing your own boundaries.

10:15 – 11:15 am

From Dancing with the Stars to a discovering a dream come true. Sara recounts her experiences as a documentary filmmaker who shines a light on extraordinary women across the US. With a unique mix of an entrepreneurial spirit, a drive to change the way the world perceives women – Sarah entertains, enlightens and encourages the crowd to live their best lives. Share in her transformational story as she shares how she translated her passion of storytelling to professional success.

11:15 – 11:30 am Closing Remarks
11:30 – Noon Grab & Go Snacks

*schedule subject to change


Your Summit Experience

Here’s your chance to co-create a first-ever gathering of female minds determined to play a part in our industry evolution. Here’s what you can expect:

Daily programming

Discover a new landscape through thought-leadership, panel discussions, skill building seminars, story-telling sessions and other surprises!

Workshops & activities

Stretch your skills by diving in to hot topics and participating in interactive problem solving.

Conversation spaces

Step into casual conversations, valuable networking and richer discussions designed to inspire creative ideas.

Meals and events

Enrich your experience and engage with a new network of female leaders during shared meals and lively receptions.