President's Message | Volume IX, Issue II
This fall as I sadly pack away my summer garb and embrace back-to-school, I am reminded of the importance of sisterhood and sticking together. My pre-teen daughter is entering 8th grade this week—boy, this is a tough age. Being 13 is not always rosy and this juncture of adolescence has already begun to take its toll on me as a mom. Thankfully my daughter has found a great crew of girlfriends who have made the transition to teenhood much easier, but I wonder whether she would be as confident and comfortable this week without them.
Having a female group personally and professionally is so important. It really does make all the difference as we tackle new challenges, experience hardships, and celebrate successes. Growing up I was blessed with a fabulous mom who was my biggest cheerleader, but it was my female friends that really made a difference as I matured. I graduated from a private all-female school with a diverse group of 43 young women. We encouraged one another and felt that we could, and should, accomplish great things. It was instilled in us that it was our moral obligation to do great things, leave our mark, and change the world to be a better place for the young women who followed us.
In college I expanded my sister community when I decided to join a sorority. This new group, like the one I experienced in high school, was there to lend support and encouragement, and of course challenge my thinking and expand my perspective. We helped each other through tough courses, dating crises, and difficult decisions as we selected majors and post-school career choices.
After college I remained involved in women’s organizations and initiatives, and have continued to be impressed by the spirit of collaboration, camaraderie, and compassion. I have seen firsthand the power of WiM’s member community as we have graduated nearly 100 female leaders from our Leadership Lab for Women in Manufacturing and our Management Development Program. We also have supported nearly 100 local chapter programs in the last year. These programs and experiences have helped women make invaluable connections and expand their networks.
Women supporting other women is something we should aspire to practice in our own lives. It is so easy to cast stones or offer unconstructive criticism rather than to listen and learn and be empathetic. As actress and director Mindy Kaling shared in her commencement address at Dartmouth in 2018, “…girls have to do a better job supporting each other.”
As we get ready to host our 9th annual SUMMIT, I challenge all of you to make new female connections, consider compassion versus criticism, and grow your group of amazing females who can be turned to in times of trouble and success. I continue to be inspired by the outstanding women involved with our organization and feel blessed to have the opportunity to support and celebrate you!
I hope to see you this fall in Denver!
Founder and President
Women in Manufacturing (WiM)