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{ts '2009-04-20 00:00:00.000'}

MINNEAPOLIS, April 20, 2009 — Tomorrow for the very first time, more than 100 students from middle and high schools throughout Minneapolis will be able to attend the Girls Going Places® Entrepreneurship Conference presented by the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America (Guardian), in partnership with Minneapolis-based Foster Klima & Company, LLC, and the University of St. Thomas.
The event, where local women business owners and professionals mentor and educate girls ages 12 through 18 about entrepreneurship and financial independence, will be held at the University of St. Thomas on Tuesday, April 21 from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
"The current economic crisis accentuates the importance of business and financial education," said Kathy Readinger, national manager, Girls Going Places Program, Guardian. "By providing young women with the opportunity to learn from successful local business women in their own hometown, we hope to ignite their excitement about entrepreneurship and the rewards of business ownership, while demonstrating the importance of financial management."
During the interactive conference, local business women will guide the girls through various activities such as "Hot Company®," an entrepreneurial board game that introduces girls to the advantages and challenges of owning one's own business. They will also team up for an exercise called "Product-in-a-Box®," in which they will have the opportunity to design a product and present a marketing plan. The mentors will share their experiences as successful women in business.
"This is an excellent opportunity for our teenage girls to interact with successful women business owners who are willing to share their ideas and experiences and help girls learn about starting businesses and managing their personal finances, both of which are key to economic self-reliance," said Megan Thul, Director of Operations, Foster Klima & Company, LLC. "We are proud to present this unique program to the students of this city and to the community overall," she added.
More than 10 million firms across the nation are owned by women, with the ranks of women business owners growing rapidly, according to Guardian's Readinger. "As a firm, Guardian is committed to ensuring that young women are aware of the benefits of business ownership," she said. "Through this and other programs, we are committed to helping the current generation of women business owners and those to come."
This conference is made possible through the generous support of Guardian, Foster Klima & Company, LLC, the Schulze School of Entrepreneurship at the University of St. Thomas, and numerous individuals.
In 2009, Guardian will host eight Girls Going Places® Entrepreneurship Conferences throughout the country. The national Girls Going Places® Entrepreneurship Program also includes an annual award program. The award program honors and grants $30,000 in cash prizes to 15 teen girls who demonstrate outstanding entrepreneurial abilities and service in the community. The program was created ten years ago as part of Guardian's Women's Initiative, which was established to help women create, invest, and protect wealth.
For more information about the program, its awards and conferences, please visit www.GirlsGoingPlaces.com. Information is also available on MySpace, Facebook and YouTube; keyword Girls Going Places.
About Foster Klima & Company, LLC
Foster Klima & Company, LLC has been committed to building client relationships that stand the test of time. Our Mission... is to focus on creating the maximum wealth possible according to our client's potential. The strength and endurance of our client relationships is the foundation of our success and this has guided us through the century. Our Commitment... Foster Klima & Company, LLC provides the environment, system, services and support that enables our clients to reach their maximum wealth potential. We continually adopt new measures of productivity and excellence, and consistently reinforce our personal dedication to success. It's about Our Values... It's about wanting to live better... It's about working smarter, not harder... It's about spending time with loved ones... It's about working with a firm who truly cares for our client's and representative's success. For more information, visit: www.fosterklima.com
About University of St. Thomas
Founded in 1885, the University of St. Thomas is a Catholic, diocesan university based in the Twin Cities of St. Paul and Minneapolis. The largest private university in Minnesota, St. Thomas offers bachelor's degrees in over 85 major fields of study and more than 45 graduate degree programs including master's, education specialist, juris doctor and doctorates. For more information about the University of St. Thomas, visit: www.stthomas.edu/business/schulzeschool/default.html
About Guardian
Founded in 1860, The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, New York, NY (Guardian) is one of the largest mutual life insurance companies in the United States. As of December 31, 2007, Guardian and its subsidiaries had $41.3 billion in assets (on a consolidated statutory basis). With close to 3,000 financial representatives and 80 agencies nationwide, Guardian and its subsidiaries protect individuals, small business owners, and their employees with life, disability, health, long-term care, critical illness and dental insurance products, and offer 401(k), annuities, and other financial products and trust services. Specializing in the small to mid-size business market, Guardian's Group business unit serves more than 120,000 employers, 6 million employees, and their families.
For more information about Guardian, please visit: www.GuardianLife.com.
Guardian does not issue The Guardian Advantage® or The Guardian Choice(SM) and does not guarantee any of the benefits provided under the contract.
SOURCE:The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America

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