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WFN Members Support Historic White House Gender Equity Strategy

The Women’s Funding Network invites you to join a statement of support of the historic White House Strategy on Gender Equity and Equality.

As the largest international network of women’s funds and gender equity funders, we celebrate the historic release of the first-ever White House Strategy on Gender Equity and Equality. We thank the White House Gender Policy Council for recognizing the wisdom and expertise of women’s funds by asking their feedback and data as they shaped their strategy. We know the recommendations are more robust because they brought to the table the unique geographic and demographic diversity of our member funds across the country. As a result, the policies that are re-shaping states and regions across the United States are now influencing domestic and international policy agendas that bring a gender lens to equity and equality. 

We are particularly pleased at the White House’s recognition of the interconnectedness of their chosen strategic priorities, and how these issues compound to affect women and marginalized genders. In our current systems, child care impacts economic opportunities, which in turn impact access to housing, which impacts health outcomes and more.

As Audre Lorde reminds us:

“There is no thing as a single-issue struggle because we do not live single-issue lives.” We must tackle the multiple barriers to women’s wellbeing at the same time, and are heartened to see this strategy does just that.”

Audre Lorde

Women’s funds are already implementing solutions at the state level in each of the National Strategy on Gender Equity and Equality’s 10 priority areas, offering models for national policy transformation. 

  1. Improving economic security and accelerating economic growth; 
  2. Eliminating gender-based violence; 
  3. Protecting, improving, and expanding access to health care, including sexual and reproductive health care; 
  4. Ensuring equal opportunity and equity in education; 
  5. Advancing gender equity and fairness in the justice and immigration systems; 
  6. Advancing human rights and gender equality under the law; 
  7. Elevating gender equality in security and humanitarian relief; 
  8. Promoting gender equity in mitigating and responding to climate change; 
  9. Closing gender gaps in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields; and 
  10. Advancing full participation in democracy, representation, and leadership.

For example:

  • The Women’s Foundation for the State of Arizona identified in-demand, well-paying jobs — including non-traditional jobs for women —and then worked with education and childcare providers to ensure those jobs were within reach for women. 
  • Western New York Women’s Foundation integrated a trauma-informed, restorative approach to programs and job training for women; they found that it contributed to their well-being and retention. 
  • The Women’s Foundation of Oregon provided funding and research for the local coalition that helped pass the 2017 Reproductive Health Equity Act, which ensures that Oregonians, regardless of income, citizenship status, gender identity or type of insurance, have access to the full range of preventive reproductive health services, including family planning, abortion, and postpartum care. 
  • The Women’s Foundation of Colorado used research and data, funded and participated in coalitions, and amplified community voice to develop and generate broad support for effective solutions, and helped pass the Colorado Equal Pay for Equal Work Act, paid family and medical leave insurance, and funding to strengthen the statewide early care and education system, including universal pre-Kindergarten. 

Together, WFN members move more than $400 million in grants to local communities per year – making our alliance one of the largest investors of gender and racial equity and justice in the U.S. WFN members across the country – and indeed, across the world – are pioneers of best practices and policy solutions that are directly centered on the needs of our most marginalized communities. Their trust-based philanthropy uplifts those most impacted by a policy at the forefront of any decision making, creating a space where ideas are created, tested, and championed.

With the President following the Gender Policy Council’s recommendations and with support and solutions leadership from women’s funds and gender justice funders across the globe, we have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to make true change and create a future where everyone can thrive.

We applaud the White House for this effort, stand with them in support of using a gender lens to address society’s most pressing issues, and call on philanthropic and advocacy partners to champion and resource the policies that we know are working. This historic equity and equality agenda from the White House advances the wellbeing of women and girls–which, in turn, advances the wellbeing of all of us. 

In Support, signed:

  • Elizabeth Barajas-Román, President & CEO, Women’s Funding Network
  • Tanna Clews, CEO, New Hampshire Women’s Foundation
  • Leela Bilmes Goldstein, Executive Director, Women’s Fund of Hawai‘i
  • Sharon LaRue, Executive Director, Kentucky Foundation for Women
  • Jo Giles, Executive Director, Women’s Fund of Omaha
  • Marya Meyer, Interim Executive Director, The Women’s Fund Miami-Dade
  • Meg Smith, Director, Vermont Women’s Fund
  • Beth Bengston, CEO, Working for Women
  • Julie Abrams, CEO, How Women Lead
  • Natanja Craig-Oquendo, Executive Director, Boston Women’s Fund
  • Karen Sterk, CEO, Jeannette Rankin Foundation
  • Ruby Bright, President & CEO, Women’s Foundation for a Greater Memphis
  • Donna Haghighat J.D., CEO, The Women’s Fund of Western MA
  • Kelley Griesmer, President and CEO, The Women’s Fund of Central Ohio
  • Michele Ozumba, President, Jeannette Rankin Foundation
  • Miloney Thakrar, Founder, Mind the Gender Gap, Inc.
  • Sarah Haacke Byrd, Executive Director, Women Moving Millions
  • Joanne Murray, Executive Director, Women’s Fund SouthCoast
  • Emily Weltman, Founder, Collective Flow Consulting
  • Gloria Perez, President & CEO, Women’s Foundation of Minnesota
  • Kimberly Crichton, Executive Director, Maine Women’s Fund
  • Francene Chadwick, Co-Founder & CEO, Serve
  • Jill Nowak, Board Member and Treasurer, Women’s Funding Network
  • Dwayne Proctor, President and CEO, Missouri Foundation for Health
  • Sheri Scavone, CEO, WNY Women’s Foundation
  • Roslyn Dawson Thompson, President & CEO, Texas Women’s Foundation
  • Viviana Alvarado Pacheco, Senior Research Associate and Operations Manager, The Women’s Fund Miami-Dade
  • Adriana Loson-Ceballos, Co-Founder, Colmena-Consulting
  • My Lo Cook, Executive Director, Shadhika
  • Mesha Davis, CEO, Arizona Foundation for Women
  • Jess Tomlin, Co-CEO, Equality Fund
  • Kelly Nevins, CEO, Women’s Fund of Rhode Island
  • Dawn Oliver Wiand, President and CEO, Iowa Women’s Foundation
  • Junemarie Justus, Board Member, Women’s Funding Network
  • Louise Davis, President, PRBB Foundation
  • Leela Bilmes Goldstein PhD., Executive Director, Women’s Fund of Hawai‘i
  • Tine Ward, Founder and CEO, Rockflower Partners
  • Karen Kortsch, Board President, International Women’s Convocation
  • Carmen Randolph, Founding President and CEO, Women’s Foundation of the South
  • Anna Beth Gorman, Executive Director, Women’s Foundation of Arkansas
  • Amalia Luxardo, Chief Executive Officer, The Women’s Foundation for the State of Arizona
  • Lauren Y. Casteel, President and CEO, The Women’s Foundation of Colorado
  • Gina Jackson, Co-Founder and Co-CEO, Return to the Heart Foundation
  • Sarina Arcari, CEO, Arcari Solutions
  • Mary Beth Morrissey, Interim Executive Director, The Fund for Women and Girls
  • Jacquelyn Lendsey, Interim President & CEO, The Washington Area Women’s Foundation, Inc.
  • Sarah Ghiorse, Executive Director, NewMexicoWomen.Org
  • Alexandra Frazier, Executive Director, Valentine Foundation
  • Nicole Baran, Executive Director, Peggy and Jack Baskin Foundation
  • Jess Tomlin, Co-CEO, Equality Fund
  • Ezaie Muhindo Mbumba, Coordonnateur, Organisation paysanne pour le développement durable

Member Bureau