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Womenetics Kicks-Off Global Women's Initiative

 ATLANTA - On November 11, Womenetics presents Global Women’s Initiative: Creating the Ripple Effect, a gathering of over 24 of the world’s leading experts on empowering women held at the Loews Hotel in Atlanta. The Honorable Melanne Verveer, U.S. Ambassador-At-Large for Global Women’s Issues, will be the keynote speaker. Ambassador Verveer and experts from across the country and around the globe will generate ideas and instill action on education, health, human rights and economic empowerment. Womenetics’ goal for the conference is to shine a spotlight on Atlanta’s role providing leadership that will clear the path for women’s success worldwide.

Ambassador Verveer’s appointment by Barack Obama as the first U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women's Issues signifies that Washington understands that better societies can be created as a result of empowering women.

“It is a simple fact that no country can get ahead if half of its citizens are left behind,” Ambassador Verveer states. “Studies have shown that women drive GDPs, and gender equality is smart economics. As Secretary Clinton has often stated, women and girls are one of the world’s greatest untapped resources and investing in them is one of the most powerful forces for international development. Promoting gender equality is not just the right thing to do—it’s the smart thing to do.”

So, it’s been made clear by government and corporate leaders: Women must play a key role in changing our world. But how can we make an impact?

Womenetics’ conference will be the first of its kind in Atlanta. It is an opportunity to connect and engage Atlantans with pathways for making a difference locally and internationally. Attendees will engage with inspirational guests from major universities like Harvard, George Washington, and Emory; NGOs like UNESCO; and corporations like GE, Coca-Cola and the Nike Foundation... as well as social entrepreneurs who are leading the charge.

“Research proves that women play a key role in the economic success of nations and the betterment of society,” said Elisabeth Marchant, CEO of Womenetics. “We’re thrilled to host this prestigious conference in a community uniquely positioned to help women and girls here and abroad. Atlanta has the fourth highest number of Fortune 500 corporation headquarters, more than 7500 non-profit organizations, 10 globally renowned universities, and some of the world’s leading NGOs. But we also rank as one of the worst cities for human trafficking. That’s just one of the many women’s issues on the table at this event, where we will provide actionable opportunities for attendees, creating a ripple effect of inspiration, discussion and education.”

Moderated panel discussions will follow the Ambassador’s remarks. The four panels feature 24 individuals actively working on women’s global issues, and focus on Economic Empowerment, Education & Literacy, Health & Hunger, and Human Rights. Speakers represent academic, corporate, government, private sector and non-profit organizations, including the US Department of State, The Coca Cola Company, the Nike Foundation, Emory and Harvard and George Washington Universities, UNESCO, MedShare and CARE, to list a few. 

Confirmed Panelists Include:

Education & Literacy:

  • Sally Lovejoy, (Moderator) Former Education Attaché, US Mission to UNESCO and Former Dir., White House Global Literacy Initiative
    • Elizabeth Fordham, Education Director, UNESCO:
    • Marian Bunch, Founder, Rotarians for Fighting Aids.
    • Wendi Huestis, East Coast Officer, Room to Read

Health & Hunger:

  • Sandy Thurman, (Moderator) President/CEO, International AIDS Trust, Emory University, CDC;
    • Douglas Coutts, United Nations World Food Programm; Distinguished Visiting Professor, Auburn University
    • Dr. Jim Sherry, Chair, Global Health and International Affairs, George Washington University
    • Nell Diallo, Exec. Director for Corporate and International Relations, MedShare
    • JoDee Winterhof, VP Policy and Advocacy, CARE

Economic Empowerment:

  • Swan Paik, (Moderator) Director of Portfolio, Nike Foundation
    • Jane Nelson, Dir. of Corporate Social Responsibility, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University
    • Wenchi Yu, Director of Policy for Global Women’s Issues, U.S. Department of State
    • Marika McCauley Sine, Manager of International and Government Relations, The Coca-Cola Company
    • Janine Maxwell, Founder, Heart for Africa

Human Rights:

  • Cindy Sawyer, (Moderator) Director, Work Environment and Workplace Rights, The Coca-Cola Company
    • Dr. Sita Ranchod-Nilsson, Director, Institute for Developing Nations, Emory University and the Carter Center
    • Pamela Livingston, VP Corporate and Strategic Partnerships, International Justice Mission
    • Dawn Conway, SVP Corporate Responsibility, Lexis Nexis
    • Lorraine Chilvers, Human Trafficking Prevention, ZONTA International

A Resource Fair will include organizations actively addressing global women’s issues and serve as a call to action for attendees.

Five undergraduate student winners of The Georgia-Pacific Scholarship will also be in attendance. This competition offers $9000 to promote understanding and action surrounding global women’s issues. “Womenetics has partnered with Georgia-Pacific to provide future leaders with the financial means to pursue research, and expose them to an assembly of experts that may inspire further action,” remarked Marchant.

Sponsors of the Global Women’s Initiative include US Bank, ADI, Porsche North America, Emory University Goizueta Business School, GE, The Wyche Group, Piedmont Healthcare, UPS, and Georgia-Pacific Corporation.

About The Georgia-Pacific Scholarship:

Promoting Ideas and Action Surrounding Global Women’s Issues

Undergraduate students were invited to write a 1500 word essay on provided questions. The $9000 scholarship will finance education, travel or other opportunities that lead to further understanding of global issues. Finalists will attend the November 11 event and the VIP reception the night before, where they’ll meet Ambassador Verveer, business and NGO leaders, and the panelist experts. The scholarship winner will be announced the event. 

About Womenetics:
Womenetics is a global business platform combining online content and events that connects and inspires women to achieve success in their professional and personal lives. Recognized by Forbes as one of the Top 100 Websites for Women, this multifaceted organization unites women in the workplace and beyond. Womenetics provides engaging content surrounding issues that impact, ideas that inspire, individuals that lead and institutions that matter.


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