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Applied leadership

Enabling young women to SOAR

Talented women gained insights through SOAR’s leadership programs. Through Young Women LEAD, they applied their learnings to help teenage girls.

Live! Events Women Behind YWL

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SOAR leaders give life to Young Women LEAD

Every great idea begins with a conversation between two people. And the impetus for Young Women LEAD was no different.

Sally Schott, Founder/President of SOAR, had been grappling with how women in her company’s leadership development program might apply their recently acquired skills. As she enjoyed lunch with a friend, she learned the woman’s daughter had been experiencing self-doubt. Her friend said regardless of the schools that teenage girls attend, they all seem to be plagued with a lack of confidence.

The insight turned into a conversation that led to SOAR participants planning and implementing the first Young Women LEAD conference. Their mission: develop leadership skills in girls, build their confidence, and expose them to careers.

During the 15 years since its first conference, Young Women LEAD volunteers and staff have produced 65 events, empowering 46,000 high school girls.


The inaugural conference took place on a Saturday in Louisville at the Mohammad Ali Center with 95 high school girls participating.


Through the generosity of major corporations and local companies, SOAR participants worked with local leaders where their classes were held to bring Young Women LEAD to Lexington, Kentucky and Northern Kentucky University in addition to its conference in Louisville.


Young Women LEAD transformed from a one-day event run by volunteers into a nonprofit. That same year, we held our first event in Jasper, Indiana.


Girls in Eastern Kentucky, Southeastern Ohio and West Virginia attended the first Young Women LEAD event in Ashland, Kentucky.


We launched our first-ever virtual Young Women LEAD Live! presented by Toyota. Girls from 28 states joined us for the virtually delivered events.


High school girls nationwide were encouraged to Put On Your Brave during our virtually delivered Young Women LEAD Live! 2021 event presented by Toyota. Girls from 4 countries and 14 states joined us to learn with award-winning presenters Julie Carrier, Monique Coleman, Ashley Eckstein, Maryam and Nivaal Rehman, and emcee Paola Suro.


High school girls developed their leadership skills and increased their confidence through YWL interactive evidence-based leadership curriculum.

We hosted our 10th annual conference in Jasper, Indiana and inaugural conference in Robinson, Illinois. The fall of 2022 featured conferences in Ashland, Lexington, and Highland Heights, Kentucky.

A catalyst for changing the face of corporate leadership

SOAR is a leading provider of leadership learning experiences designed to accelerate the advancement of women and minorities into senior leadership positions. We focus on peer-to-peer learning environments to develop leaders who are engaged in their work, empowered to create value, and equipped to lead their organizations into the future. With over 20 years of experience in developing diverse talent, we have built a proven process that delivers results companies demand – increased promotions and higher levels of performance.

Want to learn how SOAR can help your company retain and advance your diverse talent?

Visit SOAR

Cultivating the next generation of women leaders

Young Women LEAD is changing the way high school girls nationwide perceive themselves and challenging them to reach higher levels of personal growth and development.

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Young women at Northern Kentucky University

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Young women at Northern Kentucky University

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