October 17, 2014: What Do Conferences for Women Accomplish?, Microsoft Plans Mega Tech Conference, Syracuse Disinvites Photographer Who Covered Ebola Crisis

By Beth Kormanik October 17, 2014, 8:26 AM EDT

1. WHAT DO CONFERENCES FOR WOMEN ACCOMPLISH?: One of the trendiest new conference types celebrates high-achieving women, with media companies sponsoring at least a dozen this year. But columnist Ann Friedman wonders, are we asking too little of the conferences focused on empowerment? They largely attract a crowd of already-successful women and don’t demand a commitment to the cause from sponsors. New York: “Empowerment conferences are less a product of this friendly brand of modern feminism than they are the result of changing media business models and the rise of superficial corporate do-gooderism. … I also think it’s fair to demand more from these conferences and lists and events.”

2. MICROSOFT PLANS MEGA TECH CONFERENCE: Microsoft announced it would consolidate at least five of its major shows into one large conference, called Ignite, to be held May 4-8 in Chicago. CRN: “At Ignite, Microsoft will show off coming products and services in cloud infrastructure and management, big data and analytics, productivity, unified communications, operating systems and mobile devices. … Instead of having separate events focused on specific Microsoft products and user communities, Ignite will be a place where Microsoft will talk about everything it's doing in enterprise technology.”

3. SYRACUSE DISINVITES PHOTOGRAPHER WHO COVERED EBOLA CRISIS: Saying that students were fearful of meeting with a photographer who recently covered the Ebola crisis in Liberia, Syracuse University disinvited three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer Michel du Cille from coming to campus. Du Cille, of the Washington Post, returned from Africa three weeks ago and has followed CDC guidelines to monitor for signs of the disease—with none materializing. News Photographer: “They missed a great teaching opportunity here for the students, to show them how to report the facts and practice good journalism,” du Cille said. “Instead they went the alarmist route.”


The Ebola outbreak has not significantly impacted business travel, according to a poll of travel managers by the GBTA Foundation. Press release: “Nearly 80 percent of the managers said international business travel has either not been impacted at all or has not been impacted much during the past month. Likewise, more than 90 percent of managers said that domestic business travel has either not been impacted at all or has not been impacted much during the past month.”


BOSTON:  The Retail and Luxury Goods Club at Harvard Business School will host its annual charity show at Royale on November 18. Proceeds will benefit Dress for Success, and Harvard Business School students will act as models.

CHICAGO:  Midnight Circus in the Parks, which raises money for the Chicago Park District, will close its “Funraising Tour” with performances in Welles Park this weekend. Five family-friendly performances will take place in a little big-top tent in the Sunnyside Avenue park.

LAS VEGAS:  The Vegas Music Summit is November 13-14 in downtown Las Vegas, kicking off with Vans Warped Tour founder Kevin Lyman as keynote speaker.

Hakkasan Group today announced its newest nightclub concept, Omnia. It will take over the former Pure Nightclub space at Caesars Palace and is slated to open next spring.

LOS ANGELES:  On October 25, Ron Burkle will host a fund-raising dinner for the No Kid Hungry campaign at his Beverly Hills home, known as Green Acres.

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts Los Angeles has announced that it will host its inaugural Bafta L.A. Celebrity Golf Classic on November 3 at Oakmont Country Club in Glendale to raise money for its education and outreach programs.

Local event listings from Masterplanner:

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  Redwood Media Group will host its Spectrum Miami fine art show featuring ArtSpot International Art Fair in Wynwood December 3-7 during Art Week Miami.

Moye, a restaurant specializing in Italian fare from Puglia, opens Tuesday in Brickell. The 70-seat space has an open kitchen, floor-to-ceiling windows, and a patio that will open later in the year.

NEW YORK:  Chef David Bouley will discuss kaiseki cuisine in a lecture on Thursday sponsored by the Japan Society. The ticketed event, which takes place at the society, will be followed by a tasting reception provided by the chef's Bouley and Brushstroke restaurants.

Theater Resources Unlimited will host its annual TRU Love Benefit, called When You Care, November 9 at Sardi's. The event will include a reception, luncheon, and award show.

Local event listings from Masterplanner:

TORONTO:  The Youth Love Fashion Show will take place at InterContinental Toronto Centre Hotel on Saturday. Disadvantaged local youth created designs for the runway show; the young designers were also in charge of booking their models and selecting music for the production. InsideToronto:

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  Vice President Joe Biden will headline the first “America Answers” event series from the Washington Post Tuesday at Studio Theatre. The theme is “Fix My Commute,” and Biden will discuss the importance of investing in infrastructure. The event will also feature a display of a flying car prototype and demonstrations of electric skateboards and bikes.

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With contributions from Jenny Berg in Chicago, Alesandra Dubin in Los Angeles, Mitra Sorrells in Orlando, and Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, Jill Menze, and Anna Sekula in New York.

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