Woodhull Institute for Ethical Leadership
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To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment. —Ralph Waldo Emerson I had never understood until this weekend’s Woodhull Alumnae Retreat what it meant to be fully present with myself. It amazed me how I could spend a whole weekend being elatedly content to look at the sky, walk the lands, taste the fruits of the earth, watch the hawks circling for their next feast and listen to the playful arias of the birds. At dawn, rays of light peaked mysteriously through the branches. If I stared long enough the faces of time stared right back at me. The quiet wind kissing each branch lovingly until they danced to meet its rhythm. Sometimes clinging tightly to each other. Other times bouncing away from each other’s energy. Here in the woods, the rustle of a single dry leaf along with the crunch of our footsteps seemed as if we were walking with a hundred men instead of four women. Oh to be a tree. My bark rough, strong and dark. My sap sweet, nourishing and inviting. My feet firmly grounded in the earth like the same tangled web of roots that cannot, will not be uprooted. Someday soon. But for now I roam in quiet contemplation of my place amongst God’s magnificent creatures. Patricia Philippe, Woodhull Master Writer’s Class Alumnae

Category : News | Blog

THE WHITE HOUSE Office of the Press Secretary For Immediate Release April 11, 2011 NATIONAL EQUAL PAY DAY, 2011 – - – - – - – BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA A PROCLAMATION Generations of women have fought for the advancement of their sisters, daughters, and themselves in acts of great courage — reaching for and winning the right to vote, breaking barriers in America’s universities and boardrooms, and flooding the modern workforce with skilled talent. While our Nation has come far, obstacles continue to exist for working women, who still earn less on average than working men. Each year, National Equal Pay Day reflects how far into the current year women must work to match what men earned in the previous year. On National Equal Pay Day, we rededicate ourselves to carrying forward the fight for true economic equality for all, regardless of gender. When the Equal Pay Act was signed into law in 1963, women earned 59 cents for every dollar earned by men. Though women today are more likely than men to attend and graduate from college, women still earn an average of only about 77 cents for every dollar a man earns. Even when accounting for factors such as experience, education, industry, and hours, this wage gap persists. Over the course of her lifetime, this gap will cost a woman and her family lost wages, reduced pensions, and diminished Social Security benefits.


Category : News | Blog

Woodhull alum Kristen Kemp teamed with Stacey Lannert to write Stacey’s memoir about coming of age in the parallel universe of the prison system. On July 4, 1990, eighteen-year-old Stacey shot and killed her sexually abusive father who had been hurting her since she was eight. Missouri state law, a disbelieving prosecutor, and Stacey’s own fragile psyche conspired against her: She was found guilty of first-degree murder and sentenced to life without parole.

Little did Stacey know that she would find freedom from behind bars through telling her story and reaching out to others. After 20 years of incarceration, Stacey was granted clemency by Missouri’s governor.

At age 36, she became a free woman in January, 2009. Since then, Stacey has been a guest on Oprah, Joy Behar and NPR. Kristen often tags along doing behind-the-scenes writerly duties.


Category : News | Blog

Geraldine Ferraro, who famously said, “sometimes the best leader is a woman” was not the first female to run for the presidency of the USA. Victoria Woodhull was. But Ferraro, like Woodhull, was a fighter, a woman who clearly saw the obstacles placed before talented, ambitious women and the sexism that made women who sought power laughing stocks in a world run by pompous male pundits and corrupt male politicians.

Victoria Woodhull was nominated for President of the United States by the newly formed Equal Rights Party on May 10, 1872. A year before, she’d announced her intention to run. In 1871, she spoke vehemently against a government composed only of men and proposed a new constitution and a new government that gave women political rights. Her nomination was ratified at the convention on June 6, 1872. Former slave Frederick Douglass was nominated for Vice President.


Category : News | Blog

90 years ago today, the 19th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States was signed into law.  On August 26, 1920, at 8 a.m, Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby signed the proclamation which stated:

Section 1: The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.

The amendment is often referred to as the Susan B. Anthony amendment.  After almost a century of fighting for the vote for women, the suffrage movement finally prevailed.  Since its official founding at the Seneca Falls Convention of 1848 the movement fought against the economic and political subjugation of women.  Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, Lucretia Mott, Carrie Chapman Catt, Alice Stone Blackwell, Alice Paul and so many other remarkable women would not rest until women achieved the right to vote.

Many people do not realize that Victoria Woodhull had the audacity to run for President of the United States in 1872, 48 years before the 19th Amendment became law.

Today we celebrate the 90th anniversary of the 19th Amendment becoming the law of the land, however, we must also remember that 90 years later only 17% of Congress is female, approximately 3% of the CEO’s of the fortune 500 are women, and 20% of the op-ed’s in national newspapers are written by women.  There is still much to do.

Category : News | Women | Blog
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