June 2021 Newsletter

June 24, 2021

The 2021 Elly Awards

The Women’s Forum would like to say thank you to our Elly Awards honoree Cynt Marshall, CEO of the Dallas Mavericks and to our moderator Willow Bay, Dean of USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, for hosting such a warm and heartfelt program. Cynt shared so many inspiring messages during our Elly Awards that spoke to the determination, perseverance and resilience that all of our Education Fund Scholars have and continue to exhibit. We would also like to say thank you to Barbara Marcus, President and Publisher, Random House Children’s Books for her devoted leadership of the Education Fund for the past two years; to Marcy Syms, Former Chairman & CEOSy Syms Foundation for underwriting our Scholar video, and to our Forum members listed below for their collective efforts in putting together a successful Elly Awards.

  • Felice Axelrod, Special Projects, Bloomberg Philanthropies
  • Marlene Debel, Chief Risk Officer, MetLife, Inc.
  • Laura Clayton McDonnell, Senior Vice President, Sales – East, Canada, and Latin America, ServiceNow
  • Stephanie Mehta, Editor-in-Chief, Fast Company
  • Susan Robinson, Principal, Culture Change & Inclusiveness, Ernst & Young LLP
  • Kate Swann, COO, Purpose

We’re social! Follow us on InstagramFacebookTwitter and LinkedIn to view more content on our Scholars!

To view a clip of Cynt’s message, please visit HERE.

Letting Each Other Know...

Forum members Marla Ginsburg, CEO & Owner, MarlaWynne and Kay Koplovitz, Cofounder & Chair, Springboard Enterprises were listed in Forbes recently released “50 Over 50 List.” This list honored entrepreneurs, leaders and creators who are part of an exhilarating movement redefining life’s second half and proving that success has no age limit! The women featured in this list, including our Forum members, were selected from a pool of more than 10,000 nominees. The members of the 50 Over 50 list are founding and running companies at scale ($20 million or more in revenue for for-profit companies), leading movements and changing the world. They’re working across all sectors of the American economy—venture capital, education, politics, major league sports and more—and more importantly, they’re paying forward their after-50 success. 

Congrats to our Forum members who were honored for shattering age and gender norms!

To read more on the Forbes “50 Over 50” list and our Forum members who were listed, please visit HERE.

Dr. Georgette Bennett, Founder, Multifaith Alliance for Syrian Refugees, was recently featured on Forbes’ regular segment on Morning Joe on MSNBC highlighting women over the age of 50 who are changing the world. Forbes and Know Your Value wanted to shine a light on the women who have broken barriers in foreign policy and human rights and achieved seats at some of the most important tables in history. In the Forbes “50 Over 50” segment, Dr. Bennett was named alongside Condoleezza Rice and Susan Rice.

To view the article in Forbes, please visit HERE. To watch Georgette’s segment on Morning Joe, please visit HERE.

Westina Matthews, Retired Managing Director, Merrill Lynch, is now one of the authors selected to be included in the newest Chicken Soup for the Soul book titled I’m Speaking Now, Black Women Share Their Truth in 101 Stories of LoveCourage and Hope, edited by Amy Newmark and Breena Clark. Now more than ever, the strong, independent, courageous voices of Black women are being heard loud and clear. Westina along with many others shares their truth about life, love, family, faith and hope in 101 personal stories and 12 powerful poems.

To learn more about Chicken Soup for the Soul: I’m Speaking Now, Black Women Share Their Truth in 101 Stories of LoveCourage and Hope, please visit HERE.

Deborah Norville, Anchor, Inside Edition, a two-time Emmy© Award winner and author, was honored recently at the 2021 HeartShare Virtual Gala for her commitment to helping individuals of all abilities live independent lives. Norville received the 2021 Heart of Champion Award, which is given to an individual whose commitment to family and community transforms the landscape for underserved and marginalized populations. Through her ongoing humanitarian efforts on behalf of women, children and families, Deborah has been a tireless advocate and supporter for the community in New York City and beyond.

To learn more about the 2021 Heartshare Virtual Gala and Deborah’s honor, please visit HERE.

Arva Rice, President & CEO, New York Urban League (NYUL), was appointed to The New York City Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB), along with Central Family Life Center Executive Director, Reverend Dr. Demetrius S. Carolina Sr. Dr. Carolina and Arva will join the 15-member CCRB board as Mayoral designees. The CCRB is an independent agency that is empowered to receive, investigate, mediate, hear, make findings, and recommend action on complaints against New York City police officers alleging the use of excessive or unnecessary force, abuse of authority, discourtesy, or the use of offensive language. In a statement from Mayor Bill de Blasio: “Both Arva Rice and Reverend Dr. Demetrius S. Carolina Sr. have dedicated their lives to creating a fairer and more just city. Their steadfast commitment to social justice will make them both an excellent addition to the Civilian Complaint Review Board.”

To view all of the appointed Board members of The CCRB, please visit HERE. To view the press release, please visit HERE.

Alicia Syrett, Founder & CEO, Pantegrion Capital, was a judge for the finals of the NYU Entrepreneurs Challenge – New Venture Competition. She also participated in the Tory Burch Foundation’s Fellows Lab to mentor rising women entrepreneurs.

To learn more about the NYU Entrepreneurs challenge and recipients, please visit HERE.

Eugenia Ulasewicz, Board Director, ASOS plc, Signet Jewelers & Vince Holding Corp, was elected on May 18 to the Board of Directors of Dufry Ltd, the leading global player in travel retail, operating on 6 continents, 64 countries in 430 locations throughout the world. Dufry is also publicly listed in Switzerland. Eugenia will also be a member of the Remuneration Committee.

To read more on the Board of Directors for Dufry Ltd., please visit HERE.

Ilene Wachs, President, Horizon Casualty Services, Inc., addressed members of ProWoman, to discuss advancing women’s careers and her personal career journey, opportunities, challenges and lessons learned. ProWoman is an Israeli Organization that was founded in 2012 and has been active since in promoting women to senior influential positions. The organization provides unique programs for outstanding and ambitious female students in 12 of Israel’s leading academic institutions including one in NY.

To learn more about ProWoman, please visit HERE.

Women's Forum Ambassadors

As part of a new communications initiative to gather more online support for the Women’s Forum we’ve initiated a new concept called the Women’s Forum Ambassadors.

It is our hope that we can work with you or your PR teams, so that you may share important news about the Women’s Forum to your social platforms.  

This new initiative came along during one of our most favorite and special times of the year – our annual Elly Awards!  

Thank you to Forum member Karol Mason, President, John Jay College for being the first to embark on this new initiative with us.

If this is something you think you would be willing to participate in, please reach out Social Media and Communications Manager Naja Pazant at najapazant@womensforumNY.org.

Past Programs

We are always thankful to our outstanding members who participate in our virtual programs, keeping our community ever strong and connected especially during these times of great social challenges. In case you missed our most recent programs….

The Lost Art of Connecting

On June 1st, the Forum invited members to a conversation about how to connect in the age of technology. Susan McPherson discussed her newly published book, The Lost Art of Connecting: The Gather, Ask, Do Method for Building Meaningful Business Relationships with Forum member Faye Penn, Executive Director, women.nyc. At a time when we are more physically distant than ever before—Susan’s book tells us how can we reverse the growing trends of disconnection to forge meaningful connections in business and in life. Susan and Faye shared many great tips focused on the increasingly vital need to form and maintain our personal and professional connections. Thank you to Forum member Faye Penn for helping to present such an uplifting program.

To view the entire program, please visit HERE.

The Future of Work and LinkedIn’s Economic Graph

On May 25th, the Forum invited members to join the second program presented by Ty Heath, Director, Market Engagement, The B2B Institute @ LinkedIn. Ty presented LinkedIn’s Economic Graph – a digital representation of the global economy, highlighting the changing needs and skillsets that will be in demand in the “new normal.”

“At LinkedIn we are focused on creating economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce. New advances in tech and business are completely changing how and where we work. As global workforce challenges widen we believe our vision is more important than ever before. We are living through a fundamental transformation in the way we work. Automation and ‘thinking machines’ are replacing human tasks, changing the skills that organizations are looking for in their people. This isn’t a time to sit back and wait for events to unfold. To be prepared for the future, you must understand it”. -Ty Heath

To view the entire program, please visit HERE.

Outlook on Washington

On May 20th, Candi Wolff, Managing Director and Head, Global Government Affairs for Citi, presented a highly informative program giving an outlook on the geopolitical environment and U.S. Government policies over the past year and into the near future. Thank you to Candi Wolff for presenting and thank you to Women’s Forum board President, Joan Haffenreffer, Managing Director, CAO, Global Public Affairs, Citi for facilitating this program for the fifth year in a row.

To view the entire program, please visit HERE.

Know Before You Vote: Ranked Choice Voting

On Wed. May 12th at 12PM, we hosted a free virtual event in collaboration with League of Women VotersAlliance for Downtown New York and LMHQ to discuss Ranked choice voting, a major change to the voting structure and strategy for this year’s election cycle. Thank you to LMHQ for hosting this informative program about the upcoming ballot changes in NYC.

In promoting this informative program, we shared a special message from Forum members Nina Boone, North America Diversity & Inclusion Practice Leader, Korn Ferry, member Whitney Donhauser, Director & President, The Museum of the City of New York and Soyoung Kang, Chief Marketing Officer, eos Products on why our vote is so important, please visit HERE. Our voice matters!



To view the entire program, please visit HERE. Passcode is: Ranked2021!

Own the Arena

On May 6th, we held a conversation with Forum member, Katrina Adams, Executive Director, Harlem Junior Tennis and Education Program, about her new book Own the Arena. The book offers a singular inside look at the U.S. Open while elaborating on what makes tennis the sport of a lifetime. In her book, Adams shares a wealth of stories from her career and personal life, as well as insights from top tennis professionals, and she provides invaluable information on meeting life’s tests both on the tennis court and off. Thank you to Forum member Katrina and Forum colleague Arva Rice, President and CEO, New York Urban League, for presenting a wonderful conversation about Katrina’s life and career drawing from stories shared in Katrina’s new book.

To learn more about Katrina’s new book, please visit HERE.

To view the entire program, please visit HERE.

Invincible Women: Inspiring & Successful American Immigrants

On May 4th, we held a powerful discussion addressing the importance of standing up against hate, racism, and fear born of misinformation, which is a part of Forum member’s Bilha Fish, MD, Chesner Diagnostic Imaging, Aridana Publishing and Nassau Physicians Foundation lifelong commitment. Thank you to Forum member Heather Nesle, President, New York Life Foundation for moderating an inspiring discussion with Forum colleague, Bilha Fish, MD and some of the remarkable women profiled in Bilha’s new book, Invincible Women: Conversations with 21 Inspiring and Successful American Immigrants. Thank you to the participating panelists: Olga Murray, Aroon Shivdasani and Forum member, Helena Wong, President, Top Trend International.

To learn more about Bilha’s book, please visit HERE.

To view the entire program, please visit HERE.

The Equal Rights Amendment Project

On April 29th, our Equal Rights Amendment Project Program discussed the legal and political impediments that stand in the way of finalizing the ERA and why there remains a pressing need to incorporate explicit protections for sex-based equality in the Constitution. Thank you to Professor Katherine Franke, faculty director of Columbia Law School’s ERA Project, and Marcy Syms, Former Chairman & CEO, SYMS Corporation member of the ERA Project’s Advisory Board and Forum member, for their illuminating discussion on the ERA’s current legal status and why its passage remains urgently important.

To read the associated press release, please visit HERE.

To view the entire program, please visit HERE.

Want to Share with Us?

Please submit newsletter content before July 20th to be included in the next edition. Submissions and corresponding media/links can be submitted below, in your “My Participation” section of your member portal HERE, or you can reach out to Communications and Social Media Manager Naja Pazant at najapazant@womensforumNY.org. Also, if you’d like to share newsworthy accomplishments and updates with the IWF community, please reach out to Communications Manager Lauren Williams at lwilliams@iwforum.org.

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