b'BY ALICIA LAWVER, CONFERENCE CHAIRGrit, Defined: The 2021 Fall ConferenceG rit, defined: Courage and resolve; strength ofto let down our guard. We have persevered. character.And thus our theme: True Grit.This past year (and more), WAMOA Members andIn part a fun thematic (cowboy) hat tip to a Western Ed Partners have gone above and beyond to respond tofilm classic of yesteryear (1969, 2010), but primarily an pandemic realities of increased safety protocols, messed upacknowledgment of what has been proven time and again supply chains, and a ceaseless need to respond to an ever- during COVID: WAMOA members define true grit. changing and ever-growing list of demands.Join us for this opportunity for learning, inspiration Endurance and patience have been tested, new methodsand networking featuring two days of workshops, a trade and processes have been born, weve bonded as partners inshow featuring our ed partners and vendors, and inspiring this game of survivor as there was no time for rest, no timekeynote speakers. ABOUT OUR OPENING KEYNOTEShannon Huffman Polson is one of the first U.S. ArmyGrit Project blog, and in her newest book, The Grit Factor. Women Apache Helicopter Captains and Pilots, co-founderDrawing on a distinguished military and corporate career, and CEO of The Grit Institute, and author of North of Hopeshe reveals her lessons learned and leadership strategies and The Grit Factor. From the cockpit to the boardroom,to help you harness your own inner strength, move beyond Shannon shares stories of grit and leadership to help othersresistance, and attain your goals. With an emphasis on overcome fear, break through uncertainty, and reach theirgritwhich she describes as a dogged determination in full potential. After nearly a decade as an Army officer andthe face of difficult circumstancesshe demonstrates attack aviation leader, and later as a leader and managerhow to tap into that passion and resolve so you can face in the corporate sector at Guidant and Microsoft, Shannonyour limitations, own your sense of purpose, and become a turned her attention to the storytelling, in part through herleader of greatness. 18 WAMOA JOURNALTHE PRE-CONFERENCE ISSUESUMMER 2021'