Tag Archives: women
A few days ago, I went to the best funeral I’ve ever attended.
It’s unusual to say that about an occasion normally considered sad and somber. But the memorial service for Muriel “Mickie” Siebert, a well-known finance executive in the U.S. and the first woman to own a seat on the New York Stock Exchange, goes down in my book as a perfectly delightful send off.
Mickie founded her brokerage firm, Muriel Siebert & Co, Inc. which became part of Siebert Financial and went public in 1996. She also served as New York State’s Superintendent of Banking (referring to herself in her 2008 autobiography Changing the Rules as the S.O.B.). Mickie’s career has lessons for all women, no matter their occupation:
- Have a dream and go for it.
- Start your own game if those in power won’t let you into theirs — or even if they will but you prefer your vision of how things should be.
- No matter how high you climb, help other women rise and keep them close to support you.
Posted in Feminism, Gender, Leadership, Political Strategy, Politics, Power, Women & Politics, Women's History
Tagged feminism, gender equality, leadership, Muriel Faye Siebert, politics, women, women's history
Monday night I attended the bipartisan Women’s Campaign Fund’s annual “Parties of Your Choice“.
As always, they begin with a raucous reception at Christie’s for several hundred guests, after which we all scatter around town for intimate dinners in beautiful homes. At each party, there are several WCF-endorsed candidates or elected officials who tell their tales and make their pitches.
Here are a few photos I took during the evening, which was peppered with chants of “Change the players. Change the game.”
Posted in Activism, Leadership, Politics, Power, Women & Politics, Women's History
Tagged leadership, No Excuses, politics, power, women, women in politics
In my last column, I wrote about how the sequester could deeply impact students of all ages—by cutting education jobs, programs like Head Start, food stamps, and limiting financial aid. Well, once again, kids trying to get an education are at risk of being undercut by the federal government.
The interest rate of new federally subsidized Stafford loans will revert to 6.8 percent from 3.4 percent. The rate subsidized loans, which go to low-income households, was supposed to rise to 6.8 percent back in June 2012, but the rate’s expiration was postponed for a year. This year’s extension lasts until June 30, 2013. If Congress does not act to change the rules or extend the loan rate expiration date, an estimated 7.4 million college students will be affected.
Note that each year the date to change the rate is extended, the federal government loses out on about $6 billion in revenue. But students don’t necessarily have to be the ones paying the price. If there would have been more oversight on the financial aid process, the federal government could have prevented a loss of $200 million in federal student aid fraud since 2009.
What’s a good solution? Rather than postponing the expiration again, the House Education and the Workforce Committee argued that Congress should reevaluate their rate-setting process for all government-issued college loans.
FoxNews.com reports that the Department of Education has also been sending out letters to inform Direct PLUS Loan borrowers that their fees are being raised as a direct result of the automatic budget cuts (or the sequester) that happened after the federal government could not come to a fiscal agreement. Fees for loans issued after March 1, 2013, will have an adjusted loan rate fee—from 4.0 percent to 4.204 percent.
Students are taking more and more hits, but at least they’re putting up a fight.
Posted in Economy, Leadership, Politics, Power, Young Politica
Tagged leadership, power, sequester, Stafford Loans, Student Loan, Subsidized loans, women
Last week, Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) introduced the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would allow employees to discuss their salary information without the fear of companies pursuing legal action against them.
The bill is on its third try. In a 2010 senate vote, the bill failed to get any Republican support, even by the female Republican Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), Kay Bailey Hutchinson (R-TX) and Olympia Snowe (R-ME), who all voted for the Lilly Ledbetter Act.
According to Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), the Fair Pay Act will:
• Amend the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to prohibit discrimination in the payment of wages on the basis of sex, race or national origin;
• Require employers to provide equal pay for jobs that are comparable in skill, effort, responsibility and working conditions;
• Prohibit companies from reducing other employees’ wages to achieve pay equity;
• Require public disclosure of employer job categories and pay scales, without requiring specific information on individual employees; and
• Allow payment of different wages under a seniority system, merit system, or system that measures earnings by quantity or quality of production.
The bill makes perfect sense—give all female workers a chance to see what their equal male counterparts are earning, and see if it matches up without getting sued by employers. In an economy where women earn some 33% less than males, why wouldn’t politicians see this as a good measure for ensuring equal rights?
Posted in Leadership, Women & Politics, Women & Work, Women's Rights, Young Politica
Tagged female college graduates, gender equality, leadership, Lily Ledbetter Act, Paycheck Fairness, Paycheck Fairness Act, women
Internships are awesome. They look great on a resume and they help you hone your craft with real-world experience. As a journalism student, I’ve heard the same advice many times: “Do as many internships as you can.” So I have done internships, both paid and unpaid, for the sake of gaining some experience while I’m still in school.
Within my school and other universities across the nation, it seems like full-time, unpaid internships are a common practice. For many, these unpaid internships are taken at the cost of relocating away from school (e.g. taking a summer internship in NYC) and/or paying for extra school credit. See, that’s a loophole, folks. As long as it is labeled as ‘educational’, an employer does not have to pay its intern. In reality, paying interns is not about thriving, really; it’s about surviving. Many times, a student is not even reimbursed for housing, food, or transportation.
But there’s a group going against the current, telling students to resist unpaid work. #PayGenY, an initiative sponsored by She Negotiates Consulting and Training, argues that most unpaid internships are illegal.
“We have a very simple lesson: influence for-profit employers, university and professional schools to pay interns,” Victoria Pynchon, co-founder of She Negotiates, said.
Posted in Leadership, Politics, Power, Women & Work, Women's Rights, Young Politica
Tagged educational internship, interns, internship, leadership, power, unpaid internship, women, work life balance
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.
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.
Posted in Leadership, Politics, Power, Women & Politics, Young Politica
Tagged Gloria Feldt, leadership, politics, power, women, you, youth voters
The stories we tell ourselves about ourselves define us and how we engage with the world. It’s time for women to write ourselves a new narrative, so when asked to write a piece for the fabulous new “Kardashian free” women-owned and focused website Vitamin W (you may recall the “She’s Doing It” column on Amy-Willard Cross who created the site), I decided to put this idea out to you.
Judging from the unusually large number of tweets and retweets, it has hit a chord. Here’s the link to the original post on Vitamin W.
I want to start a conversation that will lead to specific initiatives of all kinds—social, political, workplace, personal relationships. Let me know what you think, and what initiatives you’d like to see. I’d very much appreciate your comments, shares, and tweets.
With a virtual thud, the Catalyst 2012 Census of Fortune 500 companies hit my e-mailbox:
NEW YORK (December 11, 2012)—Despite high-profile news about gender gaps, equal pay, and women on boards, once again the needle barely budged for women aspiring to top business leadership in corporate America, according to the 2012 Catalyst Census: Fortune 500 Women Board Directors and 2012 Catalyst Census: Fortune 500 Executive Officers and Top Earners.
Who needs the fiscal cliff stress we’ve been getting starting out the new year? Mika Bzrezinski slammed Congress and President, says women negotiators would solve fiscal cliff. I tend to agree. But, meanwhile we have a brave new year to embrace to the full.
One of my favorite leadership coaches for women (or fem-evangelist as she describes herself), Ann Daly, asked me and a number of my women’s advocate sheroes to tell her their wishes for women in 2013. Then she was kind enough to allow me to repost the results, the original of which appeared on Ann’s blog on New Year’s Day.
Please share: what are your wishes for women in 2013?
Happy New Year! At this time of renewal, I’m reflecting on what we can achieve together as women. And how we can help each other as women. So I asked my favorite women’s advocates, “What do you wish for women in 2013?” What would you add to the list?
Several decades ago, my cousin Chris gave me the following advice: “Remember to laugh out loud and make your own luck.” I have often marveled at just how challenging that is to do, but every day I strive to do both.
CEO and Founder, 85 Broads
I wish for women the collective will to hold elected officials’ feet to the fire on issues that really matter to us. After this election, it’s clear that women’s votes brought them into this world, and that women voters can also kick them out!
Director of Public Policy & Government Relations, American Association of University Women
Posted in Feminism, Leadership, Power, Women & Work
Tagged 85 Broads, AAUW, ABA Gender Equity Task Force, Ann Daly, Empowering Women as Leaders, gender, How Remarkable Women Lead, leadership, No Excuses, power, The Broad Experience, To the Contrary, women, Working Mother Magazine
In a recent Forbes.com article, Meghan Casserly delved into the details of a recent study by the American Association of University of Women.
The study, which I covered briefly in an earlier column attempts to single out factors that may contribute to the wage gap (including the number of hours worked and the college major chosen).
It turns out that even after AAUW factored in choices that may have affected women’s pay, women still earn seven percent less than men counterparts one year after college.
Posted in Gender, Leadership, Power, Women & Work, Young Politica
Tagged AAUW, College Graduates, female college graduates, leadership, Pay Equity, power, wage gap, women
A friend posted a photo on Facebook of a long line at her polling place this morning with the comment that “it’s a good sign when voters are treating an election like Black Friday at Walmart.” Now we have to wait all day to learn which of the candidates brought forth this outpouring of interest: do voters think Obama or Romney is the better bargain?
Both campaigns have made mistakes galore, balancing each other out in about the same horserace numbers as the daily polls have recently shown the race to be. Romney’s worst was hoisting himself on his own petard of Etch-a-Sketch positions, thus eroding voter trust, then nailing his coffin with the deliberately false Jeep ad.
Obama’s worst mistake was four years in the making. He failed to run, as Harry Truman successfully did, against the “do nothing Congress” that is more at fault for the lack of economic progress than the president who at least put forward some ideas. He had to re-energize many discouraged 2008 supporters as a result. But thanks to the Republican War on Women which Romney could not separate himself from, Obama was able to seize a set of issues that resonate with progressive women who make up almost 60% of the Democratic base.
Romney’s mistakes were mistakes of character and likability; Obama’s were mistakes of leadership style.
Posted in Election Watch, Leadership, Politico Arena, Politics, Power, Women & Politics
Tagged Democrats, election, leadership, Politico Arena, politics, power, Republicans, women, women in politics