Posts Tagged ‘Gloria Feldt’

It’s not the mountain that trips you, it’s the pebble.

Image via Wikimedia

My husband Alex and I just returned from a perfect vacation in the renowned Galapagos Islands of Ecuador. If you haven’t made this trip, put it on your bucket list. We swam with the giant sea turtles and iguanas, cavorted with playful sea lions, and snapped photos of the famous blue-footed boobies—it was pure heaven.…

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A Vision, a Goal, some Mustard: Women’s Leadership @ ASU

Somebody once gave me a greeting card that read, “Just when you think you are done, you are really just beginning.” That is certainly my story with Take The Lead which I co-founded with my wonderful partner-in-good Amy Litzenberger. So when the question came up about how I came to be teaching this online certificate course, “9 Practical Leadership Power Tools to Advance Your Career,” I took a little trip down memory lane to recall why I became an advocate for women’s leadership parity and how I learned what makes a successful movement to achieve that–or anything else you want to make happen.

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Adventures of Gloria Feldt, Co-founder and President Take The Lead

gloria-talkingAfi Ofori of Zars Media invited me to write about my career journey and kindly let me repost it here for you.

Hi everyone, I’m Gloria Feldt, co-founder and president of Take The Lead, a new nonprofit organization whose mission is to prepare, develop, inspire and propel women to take their fair and equal share of leadership positions across all sectors by 2025. I’m also an author and public speaker, and former president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America.

I got into this role out of my passion for equality for all, and in particular for women to get a fair shake. That passion has taken several forms. Take The Lead is the most recent incarnation. It began in 2008, when I discovered while researching an article on women in politics for Elle Magazine that the barriers to women in leadership — whether in the workplace, in civic life and politics, or in personal life — now have as much to do with our own ambivalence toward power as with external barriers.

I know from my own life that this can be a painful issue, so I wanted to inspire, not blame women, and to give them practical tools and tips to help them on their journey forward.

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She's Doing It: IntergenFem and You…Join In!

Look who picked me up. Come join us and tweet your opinions at the #InterGenFem tweet chat 1/31 at 2pm eastern. Read the details below:

Intergenerational feminism.

Does it exist? Can we do a better job?

Why does working together across differences (generation is just one of many, including race, class, gender, sexuality, ability) matter for the cultural and political goals feminists are looking to achieve?

These conversations keep happening, and the idea for this TweetChat grew out of a great conversation that happened spontaneously on Twitter between @AndreaPlaid, @erintothemax, @ShelbyKnox, @StephHerold, @veronicaeye and @WentRogue. Along the way we picked up @GloriaFeldt and now we’re hoping to pick up YOU (yes, YOU are enthusiastically invited!) to join us for a broader conversation that is intended to be productive, solutions-oriented and totally helpful to your personal and professional endeavors to realize justice in this lifetime.

Some of the themes to discuss:

  • 1. “Young feminism” – what does it mean?
  • 2. Organizational feminism – what is and isn’t connecting with different age groups?
  • 3. How does race and racial privilege intersect with intergenerational issues in the movement?
  • 4. What is the unfinished business of feminism?
  • 5. What does sharing power look like?
  • 6. What can we all do to better support each other?

Is there more that needs to be discussed? Good. That’s another reason for you to join, so you can bring it up.

TweetChat is Thursday, Jan. 31. Use the hashtag #InterGenFem.

#InterGenFem + YOU = Join In!

Be there 2-3 p.m. and tell your friends.

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The Young Politica: After the Fiscal Cliff, What?

For now, it seems that the fiscal cliff crisis has been temporarily adverted. The Senate and House approved the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, which has prevented old budgeting from sending the country hurtling down the Fiscal Cliff.ypcongress

But don’t get too excited. The battle isn’t over and in some ways it’s just beginning. The new deal, which is designed to keep our economy from another recession, increases taxing on the wealthy but has temporarily halted many changes in government spending.

In further detail, here’s what some of the new bill entails:

  • Tax rates will increase for taxpayers with incomes higher than $450,000
  • Changes in estate taxing was adverted
  • Middle class has an extension on stimulus tax cuts
  • Capital gains taxes increase to 20% for high earners
  • Some estimates say the deal will provide bout $600 B in revenue over the next 10 years.

However, there’s been no real agreement on what should be done about government spending cuts.

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Flourish Over 50: Gloria and Susan Tolles Talk Texas Pasts and Flourishing Futures

Mitt Romney recently described contraception coverage and abortion rights as “shiny objects” used by Democrats to distract voters from “more important” issues. At a moment in which women’s reproductive rights are being dismissed by America’s Republican presidential hopeful, it is important for us to know our history! For me, the advent of the birth control pill accompanied a defining moment in which I realized my “power to.”

I discuss my life journey—from Texas to working with Kathleen Turner on a memoir to why 2012 may finally again be the year of the woman—with writer Susan Tolles for this interview. The article originally appeared on Susan’s website Flourish Over 50.

SUSAN TOLLES: Welcome to Flourish Over 50. I’m just so excited that you’re here, and I want to talk about your lifelong passion for really empowering women.

GLORIA FELDT: I first had to empower myself. I didn’t start out knowing much about this power stuff. I grew up in small towns in Texas in the 1940-50s, where girls were not encouraged to get an education, have a career, or have real aspirations for themselves. I mean, my family actually did expect me to get educated, but only in order to be a better mother, a better mate, etc. So I really didn’t start out thinking that I had power and agency myself; I grew thinking that the agency was outside of myself. I had to learn by trial-and-error along the way, and I am still learning it.

SUSAN TOLLES: Right, we all are. It’s always a work in progress.

GLORIA FELDT: It is a work in progress. So I’ll give you the real quick rundown of what happened: I was a teen mom; I got pregnant, married my high school sweetheart when I was 15. I had three children, bing-bing-bing, and then I was 20 years old. I think it was the combination of maturity and the advent of the birth control pill where I just woke up. That was one defining moment.

I realized two things: Firstly, I had three children, and although I had a husband who was earning a salary, I kept thinking, “What if I have to support these children?” I had no employable skills whatsoever. Secondly, I was starting to get a little bored and I realized that this life was not as much fun as I thought it was going to be. I, in fact, had a brain and I was eager to go to school.

And so, I finished high school by correspondence, and then the birth control pill came along. It was that defining moment that allowed me to see that I could create a life for myself. I could plan. If I wanted to have more children, I could have them by my own choice at whatever time I wanted to. But if I didn’t want to have more, then I had that option, and it meant I could go to college. I would say that was the first big defining moment for me. There were a series of other moments.

So I often ask people when I speak, “When did you know you had the power to _______?”

SUSAN TOLLES: Hmm, great question.

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She's Doing It: Chicke Fitzgerald Has Solutionz

One of the best things about writing a book about women’s relationship with power is that I get to talk with so many interesting people about it. And since it seems that everyone is using my No Excuses Power Tool #8 – “Employ Every Medium” – by being the media these days, I have the opportunity to appear on many web-based radio shows, emanating from anywhere, and available for listening, often along with an accompanying blog post, at any time of the day or night. Media that simply could not have existed in years past.

One example of that trend is an interview I did with Chicke Fitzgerald, founder of the business development consulting firm Solutionz and the Executive Girlfriends’ Group (EGG).

EGG is a platform for executive women (both corporate and entrepreneurial). And it’s a ‘real world’ connection, not an electronic one, hosting a by invitation only conference call weekly, on Fridays from 4pm ET to 5:30pm ET. The website provides support to the group and allows the members to connect one on one, ask and answer questions, and to benefit from one another’s expertise.

I caught up with Chicke for our interview on her cell phone.

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Claudia Chan's Vision: Number One Leadership Attribute

Last summer just about this time, I received an e-mail out of the blue asking me to be interviewed by someone I’d never heard of for a women’s lifestyle website that hadn’t yet been created.

And by the way, would I have lunch with Claudia Chan—who described herself as a women’s lifestyle expert and entrepreneur and former co-owner of a Shecky’s Girlfriend events company I’d never heard of—to learn more about this chimera?

How could I refuse after I read Claudia’s vision, included in the e-mail?

By profiling influential women and sharing their experiences and advice, my mission is to ignite today’s generation of women to thrive both personally and professionally by creating mission-driven lives they love—as well as inspire their necessary participation in, or contribution to the global advancement of women and girls. There are so many amazing causes, nonprofits & companies doing great work for women (domestic and abroad) so we’re targeting many interviewees with these affiliations & passions. They set the example for our next generation that women must help women.

I was hooked.

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