Category Archives: Of Women

About and For Women

The Art and Civics of Publisher Ruth Holmberg: Making History — by Deborah Levine

Long before The New York Times had its first woman Executive Editor, Ruth Holmberg was the Editor of The Chattanooga Times. Holmberg is a member of the family that founded both newspapers and she has shared her compelling life story as friends and admirers gathered to hear her speak. Holmberg is a former director of The Associated Press and of The New York Times Company, a former president of the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce and of the Southern Newspaper Publisher Association and a member of the Board of Directors of the Public Education Network (PEN). 

The petite, soft-voiced woman is also a member of one of the nation’s most prominent publishing families.

Editor’s note: Publishing icon and Chattanooga civic leader Ruth Holmberg passed away at age 96. In her honor, here is the ADR interview with Ms. Holmberg several years ago.

Continue reading The Art and Civics of Publisher Ruth Holmberg: Making History — by Deborah Levine

The Politics of ‘the angry black Sistah’! – by Terry Howard

Other than race (black) and gender (female), what else do April Ryan, Maxine Waters, Joy Ann Reid and Angela Rye have in common?

The answer? They’re smart as heck, forceful in expressing their politics and views, and more than able to defend themselves against disrespect. You see, while others (yes, men, this also includes many of you too) sit in silence these powerful women won’t hesitate to hit back despite the potential for being tagged “An Angry Black Woman.” (If you’re unfamiliar with these women Google them before reading further.)

Continue reading The Politics of ‘the angry black Sistah’! – by Terry Howard

Lean In History for Women’s History Month – by Deborah Levine

Is women’s history and Women’s History Month still relevant today? Is the need for sisterhood activism over as some say? We look back at the first group to advocate for women’s right to vote nationally and see that it was ultimately successful. The Seneca Falls Woman’s Rights Convention was held long ago in1848. But the words of its organizer Elizabeth Cady Stanton still hold true and yet are still controversial, “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men and women are created equal.”

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You Are a Woman, A New Mandate for Today’s Social Climate – by Lydia Taylor

Like many of you, it is my practice to prepare for the day with quiet meditation and prayer. It was during such a time that I heard the words ‘you are a woman’ within my spirit. At the time, I had no idea of the relevance of that statement; but thought its interpretation must be a mystery well beyond female gender. Surely, there must be some deep meaning in those words. After all, they came during a time of meditation and prayer. But what could it be and why were those words given in the late summer of 2016? I had no idea, and tucked the words away in my memory to reflect on them at another time.

Continue reading You Are a Woman, A New Mandate for Today’s Social Climate – by Lydia Taylor

2017 Goals: Diversity – by Deborah Levine

As we begin 2017, the results of the U.S. presidential election are rippling through the national consciousness. Not surprisingly, there is much discussion on the fate of diversity advocacy in the community and in business. The economics of diverse communities, particularly regarding race, gender, and generation have become a daily issue for news reporting. Debate over Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) in the workplace is a natural extension of the discussion. Opinions range from D&I as a failure to D&I as more necessary than ever. Here are the vision and goals of diversity advocates followed by comments by D&I consultants. Together, they demonstrate a determination and renewed passion for both a diverse society and the diverse workplace.

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The Women March … AGAIN – by Deborah Levine

The 2017 Million Women March on Washington approaches, along with about 30 sister marches around the country, including in New York City. It’s been forty-seven years since I marched down 5th Ave. for the Women’s Movement. Why did I go when my goal for that trip to Manhattan was to find a job? Entering an employment agency, I insisted on sitting at the men’s table rather than with the women who were required to take a typing test. When my persistence was met with a threat to call the police to eject me, I made my way to 5th Ave. and joined the March.

Continue reading The Women March … AGAIN – by Deborah Levine

My Contra-cultural Marriage and Religious Chaos — by Micki Pelusi

It’s 1959. I’m a Southern religious teenage girl raised on the fire and brimstone of the Baptist Church. My boyfriend is a second generation Italian Catholic. My mother, recently divorced from my step-father, transforms from a “Betty Crocker’ housewife into a bird set free from a gilded cage.  This turn of events leads to her elopement with one of her many men friends to Elkton, Maryland. Butch and I go along as witnesses. After spending the night in her Buick at the A&P parking lot, waiting for the courthouse to open, we finally walk out of the wide court doors—married—all four of us. Mom and Sal drive off to Florida, I move in with a girlfriend and Butch goes back to his home, as if nothing stupendous happened.

Continue reading My Contra-cultural Marriage and Religious Chaos — by Micki Pelusi

Ban the Ban – By Hanadi Chehabddine

How the very same decision that claims to liberate women actually oppresses them.

I was reporting on the Cannes Advertising Festival on behalf of ArabAd Magazine in 2004, not only as an Arab, but also as a Muslim woman and a veiled one. For a whole week I was following up on the Arab delegation, arranging interviews with winners and even scoring with the Festival’s highest rank and advertising celebrities. I was very proud of myself and thought I deserve a day off before traveling back to Lebanon.

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Women GroundBreakers: Stories of Immigrants – by Deborah Levine

Chattanooga’s 2016 women GroundBreakers Storytelling Series began with a session on immigrants. Introduced by entrepreneur Denise Reed, three women who immigrated to the US and Chattanooga shared their stories, followed by Dr. Lisa Clark Diller, Chair of History & Political Studies/ Southern Adventist University.
Diller explained, “Historians collect stories over time and then try to draw conclusions about them, so I hope to make some general observations here about women and immigration in Chattanooga—which are set in the larger U.S. historical context.”

Continue reading Women GroundBreakers: Stories of Immigrants – by Deborah Levine

Lean In – Women GroundBreakers Storytelling

Personal and inspiring stories by women groundbreakers are front and center for the 6th annual celebration of Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day in Chattanooga, Tennessee. This year, in honor of the group becoming a member of the national Lean In movement founded by the CFO of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg, Chattanooga’s Lean In Circle will host not one event, but a 4-part series.   Humanities TN is the Presenting Sponsor of these storytellers as they put  Hot Topics into historical perspective: Immigrants, Education, Civil Rights, & Veterans/ Military.
RSVP

March 3: IMMIGRANTS – The Walden Club  RSVP 3/3
       Hear how women immigrants make a difference and inspire future change makers.
Storytellers
Dr. Mbakisya Onyango: Prof. of Civil Engineering, College of Engineering and Computer Science/ UTC (CECS)
Jessica Oliva-Calderin: Immigration lawyer & Managing attorney partner/ CALDERIN & OLIVA
Nasera Souidi-Johnson: Nasera Souidi-Johnson: Past Pres./ International Business Council (Chattanooga Area
Chamber of Commerce), Past Pres./VP of Membership French-American Chamber of Commerce, Director/ CBL Associates & Properties
Historical Context: Dr. Lisa Clark Diller – Chair of History & Political Studies/ Southern Adventist U.
Facilitator: Denise Reed – President & CEO/ The Concierge Office Suites

March 8: EDUCATION  – Girls Preparatory School
Be inspired by women’s stories from the cutting edge of education in Chattanooga.
Welcome: Sheila Boyington
Introduction: Mayor Andy Berke

Storytellers
Stacy Goodwin Lightfoot, Vice Pres. of College & Career Success/ Public Education Foundation (PEF)
LuLu Copeland, Director of Workforce Development & Training/ Chattanooga State Community College
Historical Context: Linda Moss Mines: Chair of History & Social Sciences Dept./ GPS, Historian/ Hamilton County, Board Member/ Chattanooga History Center
Facilitator: Luronda Jennings – Founder & Exec. Director/ Journey Educational Services, Inc.

March 17: CIVIL RIGHTS –  Ridgeview Baptist Church   RSVP 3/17
Hear lessons learned from the very different paths to justice, inclusion, & equality.
Storytellers
Ardena Garth Hicks: TN’s 1st African American woman Public Defender
Dr. Eleanor McCallie Cooper: Co-Founder of Chattanooga Connected
Dollie Hamilton: Compensation Consultant CCP – Human Resources
Historical Context: Caroline Sunderland, Former Sr. Educator/ Chattanooga History Center
Facilitator: Maria Noel, Diversity & Inclusion/ Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce

March 24: VETERANS/ MILITARY  – The Gathering Place at The Crossing Church    RSVP 3/24
Hear what these women veterans achieved in service to their country, where they are now, and their inspiring words of wisdom.
Storytellers
Patty Parks: U.S. Navy-retiree, TN State Director/ Military Women Across the Nation
Aubrey Williams: U.S. Army, United States Military Academy/ West Point
Lt. Tay Brymer: Public Affairs Officer/ Navy Operational Support Center (NOSC) Chattanooga
Historical Context: Major Paul Dean – MA History/ Vanderbilt U., Sr. Army Instructor JROTC / Ooltewah HS
Facilitator: Jessica Dumitru, J. D. (Texas A&M), MA International Affairs (New York U.), BA European History & International Politics (Sewanee)
Lean In – Women Ground Breakers is a community outreach project of the American Diversity Report. Created in 2001 as the Women’s Council on Diversity, we continue to provide public diversity programs onsite locally & online globally. We are now the Chattanooga Circle of the national Lean In movement begun by Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Face Book. Members include: Deborah Levine (Chair), Leanne Barron, Cathryn Cohen, Erin Crane, Traci Day, Carrie Di Memmo, Laura Hessler, Ardena Garth Hicks, Luronda Jennings, Shawn Kurrelmeier Lee, Linda Moss Mines, Victoria Overholser, Tina Player, Denise Reed, Donna Roseberry, Brenda Freeman Short, Sue Stohlmann

For more information & to RSVP: CLICK www.womengroundbreakers.com