August 26, 2021
Today is Women’s Equality Day. Never heard of it? Not surprising. Here’s some background.
It was created by Joint Resolution on Aug. 26, 1973. Under the Resolution, “the President is authorized and requested to issue a proclamation in commemoration of that day in 1920 on which the women of American were first guaranteed the right to vote.”
It took more than 130 years for American women to be given the right to vote. And even then, it was only white women who were guaranteed the vote. Although many Black women were suffragettes, women of color — African American, Asian American, Hispanic American and Native American — had to wait another 45 years. The Voting Rights Act, passed on Aug. 6, 1965, took aim at the voter suppression that had kept them from the polls.
And today, 48 years after the creation of Women’s Day in Equality, women are still working as hard for true equal rights as their suffragette ancestors did for the vote.
In issuing this year’s proclamation, President Biden began by saying, “Today, we celebrate Women’s Equality Day, a reminder not only of the progress women have won through the years, but of the important work that remains to be done.” Amen to that.
Important Work to Be Done in ICT
The ICT industry — and by extension, its channels — has historically been the domain of white males. Women’s contributions to and accomplishments in the tech industry went unheralded and were even suppressed.
YouTube’s Erin Teague
Erin Teague is director of product management for YouTube. She had some advice for women when dealing with sexism in the industry. “Recognize and embrace your uniqueness,” she said. “I don’t think the ratios are going to change anytime soon. But, I don’t think that has to be a disadvantage. Being a Black woman, being a woman in general, on a team of all men means that you are going to have a unique voice. It’s important to embrace that.”
Nike’s Shaherose Charania
Shaherose Charania, now head of investments at Nike Valiant Labs, co-founded Women 2.0 in 2006. The company focuses on gender, diversity and inclusion in tech, and Charania is a firm believer in the power of women helping women.
“Women no longer have an ‘if I can’ mindset. Now it’s more about ‘how I can’ — be in tech, start something in tech, fund something in tech. That shift is exciting! And it happened because we created a network where we show, daily, that women are innovating.”
Project Include’s Ellen Pao
In that spirit, scroll through the gallery above to learn about just a few of the women whose accomplishments have helped blaze a trail for equality in tech. As Ellen Pao, former Reddit CEO and now CEO of nonprofit Project Include, noted, “If we do not share our stories and shine a light on inequities, things will not change.”
About the Author(s)
You May Also Like
AWS re:Invent Partner, Vendor News: Cisco, Salesforce, MoreDec 01, 2023
People on the Move: Comcast, Cisco, NICE, TPx, Barracuda, MoreNov 29, 2023
AWS re:Invent 2023 Partner News: Marketplace, Salesforce, Certs, MoreNov 29, 2023
AWS re:Invent Expo: VMware, Snyk, HPE, More Showcase Cloud, Security, AINov 28, 2023