Zoe and I attended the “Women & Power” conference this past weekend at the Omega campus in Rhinebeck, NY. As a women owned business and given Omega is near our office, it seemed only natural that this should be one of our events this year. As one person put it over the weekend, Omega holds conferences where you ‘feel’. And boy did we feel!
While women have made such incredible strides in the world, there is so much more to do – we have made huge changes in the last century but we are far from our goals. But still in our country and other countries around the world there are choices made and power held that erode or even reverse the precious gains we have made. We must not become complacent in our comfortable and privileged world.
Luckily for us, there are some great women leading the charge to ensure this does not happen: Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood and energetic daughter of Governor Ann Richards (this woman has to run for president!); Eve Ensler, playwright and activist; Pat Mitchell, Paley Center of Media (former head of PBS); and Majora Carter, Sustainable South Bronx, just to name a few of the many notable speakers. But I think Hibaaq Osman said it the best to all of us: “Don’t give me your card and ask what you can do, but ask where your tax dollars are going as your government works for you.” If nothing else, the weekend was a great call to action reminding us all that we all have a role to play in shaping the future for our daughters, nieces, friends, colleagues, and young women everywhere.
Another highlight of the weekend was the opening at Omega of the Women’s Leadership Center – an outgrowth of these conferences (inspiring women to become the kind of leaders the world needs now) and there could not be a better time for this to exist in the world.
Needless to say there is MUCH for us to reflect upon as women, mothers, and business owners, including what role we will play. But you can count on this: we will play a role in helping to ensure women move into more leadership roles starting with participation in the worldwide One Billion Rising on Valentines Day 2013 – feel free to join us as we walk out, dance, rise up and demand an end to violence against women and girls.
“Change is a process, not an event.” – Sister Joan Chichester