The cultural power shifts of the last month as a result of women speaking out and telling their truths in all forms of workplaces—from acting to politics, media and comedy to tech—make this a perfect time to imagine a Powertopia. For real.
Powertopia is a culture of fairness where everyone employs his or her own “power to” accomplish goals and dreams and eliminates the battleground of one person fighting for “power over” someone else.
The shift of understanding power in this way is at the core of the 9 Leadership Power Tools created and developed by Gloria Feldt, president and co-founder of Take The Lead.
“It’s obvious from the recent harassment revelations that there is so much more work to be done to create a culture in which women are respected and have the tools they need to reach their full potential,” Feldt says.
“Powertopia is a future world where women have reached parity — across all industries, borders and communities. Powertopia is a world we hope to achieve by 2025, and one I believe we can build together, with your help,” says Feldt.#Powertopia is a culture of fairness where everyone employs his or her own #powerto Click To Tweet
The theme of the inaugural Take The Lead Day November 14, is Powertopia, culminating in a evening of entertainment with a purpose, Women, Power and the Art of Leadership Parity. The opening musical performance of the evening is by Betty, a female alternative rock band performing, “Rise.” Poet, human rights activist, writer, speaker and performing artist, Brooke Axtell will perform “Voice Lessons.”
Rosie Rios, former Treasurer of the United States, is the keynote speaker of the evening event. She is most recently known for initiating and leading historic efforts to place a woman—Harriet Tubman–on U.S. currency for the first time in over a century.
The new currency concepts are scheduled to be unveiled in 2020 — the 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment granting women the right to vote. Rios is a graduate of Harvard University and was recently selected as the first Latina in Harvard’s 380-year history to have a portrait commissioned in her honor.
An advocate for women and girls, Rios launched Empowerment 2020 at the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University, and its first project, Teachers Righting History. She will address the crucial need to write women’s stories back into history and for all women to tell their stories and understand their importance.
“We will reach parity because we must,” says Feldt. “The world is screaming for more women in leadership. When more women are at the leadership table, we will live in a better place for all women, men, families, and the economy.”
Aviya Landesberg, Marketing Lead of Lyft, a sponsor of Take The Lead Day, introduces Rios with Cheryl Najafi, Creative Catalyst and CEO of Love Over H8 Apparel, also a sponsor of Take The Lead Day.
“Lyft just made an enormous stride toward gender leadership parity by announcing it will donate $10 for every new user who downloads the app and uses the code TAKETHELEAD as a passenger,” Feldt says.
“That means, for example, that 10,000 new Lyft passengers = $100,000, moving us closer to having the resources needed to achieve our goal of leadership parity for women by 2025,” according to Feldt.
New users can sign up with Lyft, get the app and use the code TAKETHELEAD to get $5 off up to 4 rides, and $10 for Take The Lead. Lyft is also providing three Take The Lead virtual leadership workshops to all women drivers.
“This partnership proves that leadership parity can happen in our lifetimes.” Feldt says.
At the Powertopia evening performance and program, Alysia Reiner, actress, producer and activist will present Take The Lead Co-Founder Amy Litzenberger with the Leading Women Award. Reiner is best known for playing Natalie “Fig” Figueroa in the Netflix comedy drama series, Orange Is the New Black.
Reiner won a SAG award as part of the amazing ensemble cast, and starred in the first ever female-driven Wall Street film, “Equity,” a film she also produced and is now being developed into a TV series by Tri-Star and ABC.
A long-time advocate for women and social justice causes, Reiner serves on the boards of the Still She Rise which serves incarcerated women in Tulsa and the Geena Davis Institute for Gender Equality, and was recently awarded the Sarah Powell Award For Leadership from the Women’s Prison Association.
Actors including Caleigh Scott and others will perform three pieces addressing issues for women in leadership and an interactive engagement with the audience follows, led by Christina Vuleta, vice president of Women’s Digital Network at Forbes Media. Also participating in the “talkback” are Kathleen Turner, actor and activist; Jamia Wilson, Executive Director and Publisher of Feminist Press; Claudia Chan, Founder and CEO of S.H.E. Globl Media, Inc.; Barclay DeVeau, producer with Women in The Arts, as well as Reiner and Axtell.
Participating in the evening program also are Dianne Dillon-Ridgley, Environmentalist & Human Rights Activist; Shelly Esque, Former Vice President, Intel Corp; Kerry Giangobbe, CFO, Veincare Arizona; Lily McNair, Provost, Wagner College; Loretta McCarthy, Managing Parner, Golden Seeds; Leon Silver, Managing Partner, Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani, LLP; and Nancy O’Reilly, Founder, Women Connect4Good, who is receiving a Leading Women Award.
Additional partners and sponsors for Take The Lead Day are Dow Jones, Galvanize and EveryDay Dishes, Vermillion, City Winery and New York Distilling.#TakeTheLeadDay has enormous momentum for action to make #Powertopia a reality Click To Tweet
With its mission to assist women in achieving their leadership goals across all sectors from early career to mid-career and up to the C-suite, Take The Lead offers training programs and resources available in live workshops and virtual trainings for groups, corporations and individuals. Take The Lead Day provides the skillset and impetus to put action plans into place to reach gender parity by 2025.
Take The Lead followers were invited to register for a lottery to win a free ticket to Powertopia Symposium; Taylor Walker of North Bend, Wa., won a spot.
Describing herself as early career, Walker writes, “I️ , like most women, work in a male dominated field of food manufacturing. This summit would allow me to connect with women to advance our missions of parity in a field that doesn’t get much press. And quite frankly, the women in my company consist of two people. Me and and awesome woman in Chicago. This summit would allow me to be around women and the energy that Take the Lead fosters.”
Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has declared November 14 as Take The Lead Day across the state. In the proclamation, Ducey writes,” Take The Lead has collaborated and partnered with over 200 organizations, universities and corporations, focuses on developing proven solutions to ensure women reach leadership parity.”#Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has declared November 14 as #TakeTheLeadDay statewide Click To Tweet
In New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo gave a special citation to Take The Lead, declaring “Take The Lead as a voice of advocacy for women of leadership and their vast potential for fulfilling any and all roles in our contemporary society.”
Cuomo continues, “Take The Lead aims to reach over a half a million people in one day of global action to achieve gender parity in leadership by 2025. We applaud Take The Lead for its powerful message and inspiring efforts to bring leadership parity to the forefront of today’s society.”
New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio has declared November 14 Take The Lead Day in New York City.
“From our position as the first American city to join the U.N. Women’s Safe Cities Global Initiative to the leadership of First Lady Chirlane McCray and our Commission on Gender Equity, we remain steadfast in our mission to empower women of all backgrounds and to fight for a more equitable New York,” DeBlasio writes in the proclamation.
“Take The Lead has been an important partner in this mission since its founding, supporting female professionals and offering leadership programs and workshops to help them reach their fullest potential. I am proud to applaud this organization and its supporters for fueling social progress and for working toward a brighter future for women in our city and beyond,” DeBlasio writes.
“Together, we can achieve leadership equality for women,” Feldt says. “Let’s use our collective energy, excitement and brain power to show the world that we mean business.”
What is your Powertopia promise?
Learn more about how you can work toward gender parity and fairness in leadership at Take The Lead Day November 14, a global day of action for leadership parity. Register for an event or host your own. Sign up and register here.