March was an invigorating month at the YW, and not because of the crazy New York weather – it was Women’s History Month. It was a time for us to remember and honor all of the amazing women who have paved the way for us to empower girls and women.
Knowing how far we have come is important, but Women’s History Month was a time to assess where we are and talk about where we are going from here. We were able to tackle important issues of gender equity, identity and race during our Women’s History Month Panel Series.
This year’s series, “Women, Media, Influence,” was incredibly engaging and insightful – just look at the tag #YWwomen on Twitter! The media is a powerful tool, and the YW encouraged the panelists to explore issues relevant to their lives.
During the International Perspective Panel on March 5, Dr. Christina Greer from Fordham University moderated a discussion between Executive Director of the Arab-American Association of New York Linda Sarsour, CEO of Womensphere Analisa Balares, and Director of Communications at Breakthrough Lynn Harris.
These women fight daily to use the media to challenge skewed and harmful perceptions about women, and to work towards a future of equality and respect.
During the Local Leaders Perspective Panel on March 12, ESPN anchor Prim Siripipat from ESPN moderated a discussion between NYC Public Advocate Letitia James, Colorlines’ writer Aura Bogado, political commentator Esther Armah, Chief Leadership Officer of Levo League Tiffany Dufu, and writer & image activist Michaela angela Davis. These women championed for women to be accurately represented in the media and presented a scathing image of online bullying towards feminism. Their discussion demonstrated that women need to be strong leaders and never settle for second best.
During the Young Women’s Perspective Panel on March 19, Executive Social Editor at PolicyMic Elizabeth Plank moderated the discussion between Senior Editor at Colorlines Jamilah King, Poet & Activist Aja Monet, Editor-in-Chief at the Daily Muse Adrian Granzella Larssen, and Time Warner Cable News Reporter Eva McKend. These women broke the age barriers by demanding to be taken seriously and encouraged others to do the same.
These panels were more than just a conversation – they were the stepping stone towards gender equality. These conversations are important tools to guide women and men to treating each other fairly & standing up for what is right.
The discussion does not need end just because Women’s History Month is over. Let’s keep talking and moving towards a better future together.