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Maria Shriver Honors Billie Jean King and More at Women's Conference 2008

Maria Shriver Honors Billie Jean King and More at Women's Conference 2008

California’s First Lady Maria Shriver is bringing out the ladies with a sold-out 14,000 attendees at Women’s Conference 2008 in Long Beach, Calif., where she will honor Gloria Steinem, out lesbian and tennis great Billie Jean King, Betty Chinn, Louise Hay, and Ivelise Markovits with Minerva Awards.

California’s First Lady Maria Shriver is bringing out the ladies with 14,000 attendees at Women’s Conference 2008 in Long Beach, Calif., where she will honor Gloria Steinem, lesbian and tennis great Billie Jean King, Betty Chinn, Louise Hay, and Ivelise Markovits with Minerva Awards Oct. 22, which will be webcast.

But first Shriver’s pulled in more star power for the Night at the Village beginning Tuesday night at the Long Beach Convention Center. King, cooking guru Rachael Ray, Jenny Craig spokeswoman Valerie Bertinelli, Dr. Mehmet Oz and many more will be on hand for events from cooking to self-help.

Night at the Village proceeds will go to supporting the Women’s Conference’s goal of recognizing and rewarding domestic violence organizations including WomenShelter of Long Beach and Interval House, according to a release.

“The Women’s Conference is the nation’s premier forum for women. Its mission is to inspire, empower and educate women from all walks of life to be Architects of Change in their own lives, in their communities and around the world,” according to a press release from CaliforniaWomen.org. “Every year, the non-partisan Women’s Conference gathers the world’s greatest hearts and minds to address the topics and concerns that matter to women.”

Among the events slated for the conference are CNN’s Campbell Brown moderating a conversation on leadership, legacy and life with U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi.

Other events include various conversations with Madeleine Albright, Steinem and Cherie Blair. And Shriver's husband, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger will join in on the festivities.

Bono is slated to speak following the Minerva Awards and guitarist and singer Bonnie Raitt will cap off the evening with a special musical performance.

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