Conference for Women Over 50 Born from Website Co-Founded by Watertown Woman

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Felice Shapiro and Ronna Benjamin have teamed up to create a website for women over 50, which spawned the She Did It conference.

Felice Shapiro, left, and Ronna Benjamin have teamed up to create a website for women over 50, which spawned the She Did It conference.

The fourth annual She Did It conference, which features workshops that take on issues important to women over 5o, will be held in Wellesley in May and was the brainchild of a Watertown woman and her friend from Newton.

Watertown’s Felice Shapiro founded and very early on she was introduced to Ronna Benjamin of Newton, who would become her co-founder and co-publisher. tackles the issues women of that age group face. Shapiro said they can often be major life changes, such as looking for a new career or getting back into the workforce after raising children, life after divorce or keeping a first marriage strong.

“I am very much a She Did It story,” Shapiro said.

She ran a group of regional parenting magazines and lived in New York. She lost her husband at age 48 but then she met a great guy who lives in Watertown and decided to move to town.

“I needed something to sink my teeth into, something exciting. I had done parenting, and now it is women over 50,” Shapiro said.

When Shapiro was starting she told friends what she was doing and that she was looking for writers.

“One woman from Newton sent an email to 50 women and the next morning Ronna sent a story and it was wonderful,” Shapiro said.

Benjamin said she was sick of being a real estate lawyer, and had begun writing but did not know how to make a career switch.

“Talking to women, empty nesters, they want to do something different but don’t know what it is,” Benjamin said.

The pair met at the Deluxe Town Diner and their partnership soon blossomed.

While the age group has some unique challenges and Shapiro said she and Benjamin could not find a publication that met their needs. The issues can often be difficult for women to talk about, even with their best friends. takes on these issues, and created a forum for women to share ideas and seek advice.

The site has stories from a variety of writers, and feature a wide variety of topics. Some recent stories included: “Enjoying the Beach With Any Body Type,” “On My 50th Birthday I Decided to End My Relationship,” “Do You Suffer from Painful Sex?” and “Shifting Your Financial Focus: Smart Budget Tips for Empty Nesters.”

The She Did It conference takes on some of the most popular issues from and turned them into workshops. There will be eight workshops at this year’s She Did It, which will be held at Babson College on Wednesday, May 17 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

The workshops will be:

  • Your Purpose: Discover, create and implement what comes next
  • Your Encore: Skills that will help you find Your Next Job
  • Your Better Self: Confidence Building Through Improv
  • Your Sex Life After 50: It can be even better (it always can…)
  • Your Image: Makeover your style & look fabulous at any age
  • Your Money After 50: What you need to know just in case
  • Your Health: Mindful Tools To Manage Your Food And Wine Intake
  • Your Divorce: 7 steps for moving on

Attendees will also hear from Iris Adler, Executive Director for Programming, Podcasts and Special Projects at WBUR, and producer of the Modern Love podcast, based on the New York Times feature by the same name.

She will speak about the importance of staying current and visible in the digital world.

The first three She Did It conferences sold out, and Shapiro and Benjamin expect it to do so again this year. Find out more about the conference, the workshops and how to get tickets at

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