White House State of Women Summit Focuses on Gender Equality
Donna Owens, NBC News
The White House hosted The United State of Women Summit on Tuesday, June 14, to celebrate the impact and achievements of women and to call for policies that promote gender equality. Speakers included President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and First Lady Michelle Obama, as well as celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and Kerry Washington. While Biden spoke passionately about combatting sexual violence against women, President Obama encouraged the nation to reject stereotypes, to apply equal pay for equal work, and to allow paid family, sick and maternity leave. But the most inspirational speaker of the summit may have been 11-year old entrepreneur Makaila Ulmer. “Be fearless,” she said. “Believe in the impossible and dream like a kid.”
Transgender Woman Becomes the First to Land the Cover of Women’s Running
Julie Mazziotta, People Magazine
Amelia Gapin stepped out front this week, becoming the first transgender runner to appear on the cover of Woman’s Running. For a community constantly criticized for their personal choices, Gapin’s presence there is a torch for those wishing to find themselves and succeed in a different body. Gapin, who is a software engineer, is also empowering trans people as the co-founder of MyTransHealth, an organization that helps them find doctors who specialize or understand trans healthcare needs. But she sees her achievements, both in business and as a role model on the cover of a women’s magazine, as bigger than herself. “For me to be on the cover of a women’s magazine is kind of a sense of validation that other people are seeing transgender women as women,” Gapin said.
The Stories of These 12 Women Are Why Female Founders Are Terrified of Being Pregnant
Sage Lazzaro, Observer
Women tech executives are being forced to decide which is more important to them: their new baby or their new business. Lazarro of Observer writes that, to please skittish investors, women feel obligated to hide their pregnancies and return to work immediately after giving birth. Na’ama Moran, the CEO and founder of Sourcery, said the attitude they face was on display in an investor quote she spotted in Hacker News: “If someone would tell me they’re going to have a new hobby and invest half of their time in that new hobby, I would not invest in them.” “Having a family is not a hobby,” she said. Most women executives don’t speak up for fear of losing their jobs, and at a cost. ”I find myself really battling the disappointment that my executive career just feels at odds with my idea of being a good mom,” said Jessica Thiessen, a former executive.
‘LedBetter’ Index Lets You Buy From Companies With Women In Top Jobs
Clare O’Connor, Forbes
Lingerie store Victoria’s Secret may attract hordes of female customers, but it lacks female leadership. This surprising fact comes courtesy of a women-led research group that recently launched the LedBetter Gender Equality Index, which records and publishes the gender makeup of the boards and top executives of 230 companies around the world. The index is meant to inform customers of stores that have women in positions of executive power. L Brands, the parent company of Victoria’s Secret, gets a dismal LedBetter Index score of 8.3 out of 100. As LedBetter co-founder and CEO Iris Kuo points out: “On [Victoria’s Secret’s] site, there’s a picture of models in lingerie, and beneath is a list of all male names.” Meanwhile, H&M comes the closest to an even split with a score of 49.8.
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