With the onset of the 2021 (or possibly the 2020) Olympic games, I’m honestly not sure which, there is a plethora of stories coming out about the athletes, the competitions and the winners. All of which we can learn from and apply to all walks of life.
Dear fans of gender balance in politics,
Journalist Mika Brzezinksi
, who launched the Know Your Value
platform on NBC
15 years ago, wrote this piece
on what's next in the work for gender equality for a series celebrating the first 25 years of MSNBC
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.
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:
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.
If I close my eyes I can almost conjure up the smell of fresh croissants and Chestnut trees that line the Tuileries and imagine the determined crowd of women's equality advocates who have gathered in Paris this week for the Generation Equality Forum
convened by UN Women.
While I can't be there in person it's been great to read articles about the serious commitments being made to advance women's representation and equality around the globe.
Vice President Kamala Harris and French president Emmanuel Macron spoke about their support of women's equality at the Forum on Wednesday according to this piece
in France 24
Dear fans of women's representation,
There were several articles this week relating to women's representation on corporate sector boards which is of course a key ingredient in the work for gender equity & equality. In this interesting piece
, Evelyn Regner
, chair of Parliament's committee on Women's Rights & Gender Equality, calls for immediate action on initiatives to get more women in the European Union on public sector boards, in The Parliament Magazine
This weekend leaders of the G7 countries along with representatives of the European Union will meet in a seaside resort in Cornwall in the United Kingdom to tackle pressing issues including climate change & the pandemic. While just one of the countries participating has a woman leader, Andrea Merkel, five of the seven use some type of gender quota and rank higher than the remaining two - the United States & Japan - for women's representation in parliament.
Chuen Chuen Yeo
, a member of the Forbes Council, writes
about strategies to increase women in leadership around the globe:
According to the Reykjavík Index for Leadership 2020/2021, "only 52% of people across the G7 group of wealthy countries — 46% of men and 59% of women — has expressed that they would feel 'very comfortable' with a woman as head of their government."
Dear women's representation enthusiasts,
After graduating from college - 35 years ago this week - I took a job on a U.S. Senate campaign because I thought that getting good people elected to Congress was the cure for an unhealthy democracy. But after years of working for terrific candidates at all levels of government I realized that it wasn't a lack of good candidates that was causing dysfunction in Washington. Rather, it was then - and still is - the infrastructure of our electoral system that prioritizes handfuls of voters in swing states, protects incumbents, and solidifies the over-representation of White men in politics.
From left to right: Kathryn Garcia, Dianne Morales and Maya Wiley
Dear gender equality fans,
The New York City mayoral primary is quickly approaching on June 22nd, it is the first citywide election to use ranked choice voting since it was re-adopted in 2019. This week Vogue interviewed the three women candidates about their platforms and running for an office never held by a woman.
Melinda French Gates, painted by Melanie Humble
“I want to see more women in the position to make decisions, control resources, and shape policies and perspectives...I believe that women’s potential is worth investing in — and the people and organizations working to improve women’s lives are, too.” Melinda French Gates in 2019
Dear women's representation enthusiasts,