Women make up more than half of the U.S. population, yet the majority of elected and appointed positions in government are held by men.
Political insiders control who gets recruited to run for office, partisanship and winner-take-all voting often determines who wins, and antiquated legislative rules impact who can serve and lead.
The problem isn't just convincing more women candidates to run for office. The problem is there are structural and institutional barriers that limit women's odds of success at every stage of the electoral process.
To advance women's representation and leadership in the United States, we need to complement existing candidate-centric practices with innovative systems strategies.
Electing more women to government will strengthen our democracy by making it more representative, reviving bipartisanship and collaboration, improving policy outcomes, encouraging a new style of leadership, and cultivating trust in our elected bodies.
Recruitment targets for political parties so more women run.
Ranked choice voting for executive & legislative offices so more women win.
Modern rules like onsite childcare so more women can serve effectively.
Rankin Chisolm Rule for political appointments & hiring so more women lead.
Join the work for systems strategies that address the structural barriers women face & enable sustained progress toward gender balance in representation and leadership in the United States.
For 15 years, "Know Your Value," my platform with NBC, has been committed to pay equity and equal representation. And it was my own personal story that led to my first book, “Know Your Value,” which is the foundation for the KYV platform. I teach women and minorities the part of the equation that they can control, which is based on effective communication and authenticity. Back in 2011 when I first wrote “Know Your Value” I could not believe that I would tell the story of my own pay equity issues at MSNBC and have it published with their endorsement. But this is who we are. As far as we’ve come over the past 25 years, I know there is a long road ahead for true equity across business, politics, education, and all facets of life.Read More
Members of the United States Senate, who wield an enormous amount of political power, continue to be old, White, wealthy and male. Only 2.9% of all Senators since 1789 have been women and just two Black women have served in the U.S.Senate. I wrote a piece in Divided We Fall about strategies to address this representation crisis including gender quotas for the Senate and a commitment from gatekeepers to support women for open seats. Changing the system is hard, I know, but it's the most effective way to address systemic barriers in the American political system:Read More
The votes have been counted in the New York City primary and, while the city will have to wait at least another four years for a woman mayor, turnout was the highest its been in 30 years, 95% of voters found the ranked choice voting ballot easy to use, and women are projected to hold the majority of seats on the NYC council after the general election in November.Read More