Women's History Month: Honor the leaders in your life
Monday, February 24, 2014
Posted by: Barbara Francella
By Joy Chen
seen the Tweets, the Facebook statuses and public service announcements. March
is Women’s History Month. The recognition stems from a 1981 Congressional resolution
that proclaimed the week starting March 7 "Women’s History Week.”
After being petitioned
by the National Women’s History Project, in 1987 Congress passed another
resolution designating the month of March "Women’s History Month,” a time to
honor women who have made lasting positive changes to the country. Since 1995,
Presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama have issued a series of annual proclamations
designating the month of March as "Women’s History Month.”
While we honor the courage, strength and
passion of Susan B. Anthony, Sojourner Truth and other women who have changed
the course of history, I have to ask, "Why aren’t we celebrating women’s
leadership every day?”
Related: "Acting too tough? The value of being vulnerable"
There are many women in our lives who should
be celebrated this month and every month. Hundreds of incredible women activists
who have worked together to push through rights that women in America often
take for granted. There are women in all walks of life living by example,
reaching back to help other women, shaping who we are and the opportunities
available to us.
My mother is one such woman. A Chinese
immigrant who married young and had a limited education, she continues to
inspire me. She and my dad left their families to come to this country to give
their children a brighter future and better life. She wanted for us what she
wished she had: A better education and the ability to live out her dreams. Throughout
my life, my mother consistently encouraged me to be fearless and pursue my
passions. She reinforced how important it is to pursue my goals with my values
intact. She made history in my life by saying "Yes” to moving to the United
States. That moment changed my life. It’s because of what she did for me that I
am able to pursue my passions, one of which is to help women realize their
dreams and potential.
My mom has always told me that I can do
anything when I put my mind to it. When I graduated from college, I started
looking at MBA programs. Acceptance rates are extremely low for applicants right
out of college because schools like students with work experience.
Nevertheless, my mom supported my desire to apply and encouraged me to apply
only to the best schools. I applied to Harvard Business School and was accepted.
My mother has truly inspired me to be fearless and confident that I can do
We all have the ability to make an extraordinary
impact on others’ lives. We do that by tapping into our own courage and
strength to champion, inspire and empower other women and girls to pursue their
dreams. It starts with confidently believing that we each make history every
day by what we do and whom we touch.
Let’s join together to make history and change
Women’s History Month to Women’s History Every Day!
Joy Chen is the CEO of Yes To Inc., a
Network sponsor that specializes in natural skincare. In less than three years,
Chen has catapulted the brand to number two in the natural personal care
category. Prior to Yes To Inc., Chen spent 16 years at the Clorox Company in
senior leadership positions in marketing, sales and operations. The San
Francisco Business Times recognized her in 2012 as Most Admired CEO of the Year
and in 2013 as one of the Most Influential Women in Business.
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