A letter from our CEO

Welcome to 2020!

2020 is a critical year for all of us desiring to win the fight for gender and economic equity and justice. Gender equity will not be realized without economic equity. Nor can you discuss either without also addressing racial equity. They all go hand and hand.

This past Monday, we celebrated the birthday of Dr. King. Many remember him as the face of the civil rights movement. He understood and stood for so much more than desegregation and racial equality. He understood that separating racial justice from economic justice was impossible. He spoke on, marched, and advocated for fair living wages, fair housing, equal education, and the right to unionize. He tied dignity to the ability to live, educate your children, buy a home, and provide for your basic necessities.

We are not fighting for economic equity for women just because it is a nice to have. We are fighting for economic equity because we understand it is the path to agency, safety, and stronger families and communities. In 2020 we will continue to work on eradicating barriers to economic equity such as discriminatory policies and practices in the workplace, wage theft and unfair pay practices, unpaid care work, lack of access to education and training, and the threat of workplace violence or harassment. 

In addition, this year we ALL can fight for change through the election and the Census. In 2020 we will be voting on all 435 seats in the House of Representatives, 35 of the 100 Senate seats, 11 governors, many state legislative seats, a handful of mayoral seats, and the President. The result of these elections will have a monumental impact on our issues, and we each have a role to play. We each must be full participants in the process and must be accountable to make sure everyone in our sphere of influence also fully participates. In addition, each of us must do what we can to ensure that EVERY person is counted in the Census . In Illinois, we stand to lose one or two congressional seats, millions in potential funding tied to the Census, and in Chicago, $1,400 for every person missed. So the stakes are high.

Welcome to 2020! Let’s get to work!
Cherita Ellens, CEO
Take Action Today!
Become A Better
Advocate in 2020!
We are a few weeks into a new year. Are you ready to be a better advocate than ever before? Between elections, the Census, and important bills being heard locally and nationally, 2020 will be an important year to raise your voice! With so many opportunities to advocate, it can be overwhelming. So we have a few tips that will help make you a better advocate, without the pressure!

1) Set Up Monthly Giving:
What if you could donate on a frequent basis without having to think about it? Well, it's possible! A lot of organizations, like Women Employed , allow their supporters easily and automatically give a set amount on a monthly basis. Pick an organization that you'd like to donate to often & decide on a price that works for YOU!  

2) Sign Up for a Non-Profit Newsletter:
Non-profit organizations want to connect with YOU to share news and updates that sometimes don't reach their social media channels. By signing up for their newsletter, you can be in the group of supporters that receive exclusive news or hear it first! (Don't already subscribe to WE-Zine, the newsletter you're reading now? You can do so here!)

3) Give Time:
Giving time is just as important as donating money! There are THOUSANDS of volunteer opportunities available for you! Whether it's a one day activity such as feeding the homeless or an ongoing opportunity like joining a task force, spending your time advocating makes a huge difference! Spend some time with us this year. Check out WE's volunteer opportunities!

4) Attend an Event:
Thinking of attending more events to support your favorite orgs? You're on the right track. Attending and inviting friends to events will allow you to become more familiar with the organization and those running it. You'll also get the chance to connect with people who share a common interests. Also, a lot of non-profits use the proceeds from events to help them do the work. WE has some amazing events happening as soon as next month! Learn more about Women Employed's upcoming events and register!

5) Spread Awareness/Join the Conversation:
Short on time with a tight budget? That's totally fine! You can still be a great advocate by spreading awareness and joining conversations that help move the mission forward. A simple share, retweet, or repost can go a long way! Don't forget to tag the organization and to use their hashtags to get your content shared on your favorite org's platforms. Want to join the WE conversation? You can tag us at @womenemployed and use the hashtag #EquityForAll! If you're interested in being one of our Social Media Ambassadors, click here for more information and to sign up !

We hope these tips help you to become the advocate you want to be in 2020! If you're looking to connect with Women Employed beyond WE-Zine, visit our Get Involved page !
Women Employed Welcomes New Board Members!
Women Employed is excited to announce the election of five new board members to our Board of Directors. The newly elected include:

“Women Employed has a mission to improve the economic status of women and remove barriers to economic equity and we are excited to bring these dynamic women onto our board to help move our mission forward” - Cherita Ellens , Women Employed’s CEO.

See all the members of our Board of Directors here!
Meet the 2020 Advocacy Council Leadership Committee
We are thrilled to welcome 14 women as the 2020 Advocacy Council Leadership Committee. These ladies lend their passion, their time, and their expertise to drive the work of our Advocacy Council—friendraising and fundraising to build a movement for change.

  • Lisa Battisfore -Cardinal Health
  • Teresa Becvar - Stephan Zouras, LLP
  • Hannah Bonecutter - Master of Public Health Candidate, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Antonia Coffelt - Egon Zehnder
  • Julia Erdmann - Program Administration and MA Candidate in Public Policy, University of Chicago
  • Kate Everson - Boeing
  • Mara Heneghan - Cook County
  • Elizabeth Kenefick - American Hospital Association
  • Julia Mohan - Roetzel & Andress LPA
  • Kathryn Robertson - Ounce of Prevention Fund
  • Lauren Smith - Adtalem Global Education
  • Ellison Snider - Lopp Mathias Law
  • Melissa Souto - Madison Construction
  • Rebecca Zavala - Casa Central

*Members are mentioned left to right, top row then bottom row.

Want to learn more about the Advocacy Council? Click here!

Upcoming Events
Women Employed is always hosting or supporting events that align with our mission. Check out some of our upcoming events and head to our events page to learn more and RSVP!

Upcoming Events

02/04 - Advocacy On Tap: Join us for a night of live music at Lagunitas Taproom featuring an energizing jazz set from Chicago singer and The Voice competitor Meagan McNeal!

02/11 - Advocacy Council Meeting

02/19 - Marketing Council Meeting

05/14 - The Working Lunch : Save the date for our signature annual event, which brings together 1,000 supporters, advocates, business leaders, and public officials to bring about change for women and families.
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