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2013 World of Difference 100 Award Recipients | Page 2
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Wilhelmina Cole Holladay      United States of America      Education

The idea for the National Museum of Women in the Arts (NMWA) grew from a simple, obvious, but rarely asked question: Where are all the women artists? In an effort to correct the inequity, Wilhelmina Holladay established the NMWA in 1987. Today, the NMWA is the only major museum in the world solely dedicated to recognizing women’s creative contributions. The NMWA brings recognition to the achievements of women artists of all periods and nationalities by exhibiting, preserving, acquiring, and researching art by women and by teaching the public about their accomplishments. Six years after the museum opened its doors in Washington, D.C., it boasted an organization of national and international chapters and a membership of more than 125,000, making it the third largest museum in the world in terms of membership. Currently, NMWA sponsors a network of over 20 national and international committees, engaging museum members who advocate for women artists at the local, regional, and international levels. NMWA presents 10 world-class exhibitions of women artists each year and offers education curricula and programs for learners of all ages. By bringing to light remarkable women artists of the past while also promoting the best women artists working today, the museum directly addresses the gender imbalance in the presentation of art, thus assuring great women artists a place of honor now and into the future.


Bernice Dapaah     Ghana     Entrepreneurship

Bernice Dapaah is the Executive Director Ghana Bamboo Bikes, which she founded to build the capacity of rural women who lack the skills and knowledge necessary to create wealth. The initiative has trained 30 rural women to build and sell bamboo bike frames and other bamboo products to the supply chain, thus providing employment to women who otherwise would be out of a job or below the poverty threshold. These 30 women are representing a household with an average of about 5 thereby benefitting about 150 people directly. The products are being sold to existing markets in Ghana and fair trade markets internationally. Ms. Dapaah is inspiring young girls, especially the physically challenged and street girls, to become economically empowered through job skills that lead to employment and sustainable livelihoods. The initiative has garnered international praise and has been awarded for its efforts. In a cultural context where age and gender impact on social status, being young and a woman can be a challenge, but this has never stifled Ms. Dapaah’s potential. She is intelligent and talented and, more importantly, confident enough in her own abilities to assert herself and speak her mind. She pursues whatever objectives that she sets her mind to with a sense of commitment and dedication of purpose that makes her a success.


Gitane De Silva     Canada     Public Service/Government

Gitane De Silva, recently appointed as Canada’s consul general in Chicago, is an ardent supporter of the empowerment of women, particularly their economic empowerment. She has achieved many successes for women during her career in Canada’s Foreign Service. As Director General for Policy at the Status of Women Canada, she was responsible for leading policy development on behalf of Canadian women across the entire Government of Canada. She was also a lead strategist to the Minister for the Status of Women for federal-provincial policy and programming cooperation on a wide range of women’s issues. During her tenure at the Status of Women Canada, Ms. De Silva led Canada’s Gender Based Analysis teams which are responsible for training the trainers and providing advisory services on gender analysis to the entire Canadian civil service. She was instrumental in creating and helped deliver Canada’s successful strategy on the creation of the UN Day of the Girl approved by the UN in 2011 and has played a key role in Canada’s successful participation and contribution to the APEC Women in the Economy Summit hosted by Hilary Clinton in San Francisco in 2011. Although young herself, She has already mentored a number of up and coming young women and welcomes older women and men who also seek her advice and guidance.

Sonnie Dockser     United States of America      Non-Profit/NGO

Sonnie Dockser has been actively involved in the mission of Vital Voices to empower women for the past 10 years, and is a member of the Executive Committee of the Board. The Vital Voices Democracy Initiative was established to promote the advancement of women as a U.S. foreign policy goal. The overwhelmingly positive response to this led to the creation of Vital Voices Global Partnership as a nonprofit, non-governmental organization (NGO). Vital Voices is now continuing the work of advancing women's economic, political and social status around the world, by providing skills, networking and other support to women around the world. Her work in Vital Voices has focused on fulfilling the mission to give women the skills and resources they need to lift up themselves, their communities and their countries. She has participated in programs that have included women from Israel, the West Bank and Gaza to discuss and research best practices for conflict resolution in the region and the importance of women’s role in the negotiating process. As President, she and her husband support education through the Dockser Family Foundation which has special interest in programs focused on women’s issues and international study at Harvard University, Yale Law School, and the University of Pennsylvania. She is a member of the Women’s Leadership Board at the Kennedy School at Harvard University.

Candace Duncan     United States of America     Corporate

Candace Duncan is the Managing Partner, Washington Metro for KPMG. She serves on KPMG’s Board of Directors and is an executive sponsor for KPMG’s Network of Women for Washington Metro, providing financial resources and personal leadership to enable inclusion and career advancement for all. Ms. Duncan develops the economic vitality of women in many ways. She has been and continues to mentor young women she sponsors through The Fortune/U.S. State Department Global Women’s Mentoring Partnership which connects talented, emerging women leaders around the world, who are between the ages of 25-43, with members of Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Leaders, for a month-long internship program. She has hosted women through this program and continues to mentor them as they grow their businesses in their home country. Her leadership style exemplifies a leader who makes a difference and her service with World Affairs Council, Washington, DC inspires others to give of their time and talents to support education and economic growth for the region.

Leah Eichler     Canada       Entrepreneurship

Leah Eichler has used her own success in journalism to support the career success of other women. She writes a widely-read career advice column in Canada’s Globe and Mail, offering insights on issues that women face in today’s workplace. Going to the next level, she created Femme-o-comics, a web portal featuring articles and blogs on women’s career advancement. Then, when she observed that current social media tools were transaction-oriented, the way men prefer to do business, Leah was inspired to create r/ally, a mobile social media platform that is open to women and men, but specifically designed to help women articulate, share and achieve their career goals. Beyond addressing a women-friendly style of collaboration, she envisions r/ally as a productivity tool that will change the way employees communicate within their companies. R/ally provides a structure and style that gives the sense that women have a place where they can create the informal networks and support systems that are such a key aspect of men’s career success. Creating r/ally has truly been a passion project, on top of Leah’s other work responsibilities and her role as a mother of two young children. Many people talk about changing the way things work for women, but Leah Eichler takes action to make a difference.


Manal El Attir     Morocco      Community
At 28, Manal El Attir created the first social enterprise, ANAROUZ, to tackle women’s economic empowerment through market access and entrepreneurship. After years in the international development field, Ms. El Attir brought an enterprise solution to sustain and scale the number one solution to poverty: the economic empowerment of women. Prior to this, she led the Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI) Network in Morocco mobilizing hundreds of Morocco's civil society leaders creating cross-sector synergies to tackle issues related to youth development, democracy and women’s empowerment. Her work has been widely recognized including the UNAOC International fellow, Fortune’s Most Powerful Women mentee, UNESCO Human Rights Chair fellow, and the Australia Middle East Media Women’s Award. Ms. El Attir is an international speaker who lives by these tenets: I am not afraid of my own power. I dare to think big and am always ready to take action. I never make excuses or blame my cultural & social limitations to advancing my cause. I believe that one can never be too positive, too optimistic or too dreamy as it’s the only way to a brighter future.

Ansgar Gabrielsen      Norway       Champion, Women’s Economic Empowerment

Few men could have had a greater impact on the economic empowerment of women, especially through one single act, but Ansgar Gabrielsen changed the standard for including women on corporate boards worldwide when he proposed legislation in Norway mandating a 40% quota of women on boards. Mr. Gabrielsen, a member of the conservative Christian Democrat party, put forward this ground-breaking legislation when he was Minister of Trade and Industry for the government and was widely criticized for doing so. In fact, the law was passed only because of the support of Norway’s socialist parties; his own party voted against the law. Mr. Gabrielsen championed the inclusion of women at the highest corporate level because he saw it as a business issue. "I could not see why, after 25 years of having an equal ratio of women and men in universities and with having so many educated women with experience, there were so few of them on boards. " He also observed the informal way board nominations traditionally happened. "I saw how board members were picked: they come from the same small circle of people. They go hunting and fishing together, they're friends." To him, it added up to the need to bring Norway better business practices. "To me, the law was not about getting equality between the sexes, it was about the fact that diversity is a value in itself, that it creates wealth.” The legislation galvanized the movement for more women on boards and has been the hallmark for progress since its enactment.


Vinny Garg     United States of America       Non-Profit/NGO

Born and raised in India, Vinny Garg knows women living in villages across India are trapped in a vicious cycle of illiteracy, poverty and ill health. Having gained the means and resources through her work in the U.S., Ms. Garg has established Nazakat as an NGO vehicle to provide targeted program development opportunities for improving the condition of destitute women in Northern India. Her Foundation is based on the belief that we can empower women to become self-reliant and overcome the acute poverty bestowed upon them by class or social position. Ms. Garg encourages women to tap into their inner-self and recognize what is innate to them , explore the possibilities as to how they see the world, examine how they engage in effective communication, turn their liabilities into strengths, and light up their passion to achieve their goals. Ms. Garg, a Sr. Associate at KPMG, has secured a partnership with MIT’s Poverty Alleviation Lab to develop social equality and community development programs. She has set out on a mission to change these dire circumstances and develop a multi-tiered approach to economic parity by promoting educational equality, developing grassroots entrepreneurs and promoting gender equity programs.         


Lella Golfo      Italy       Public Service/Government

When it comes to advancing women in business, Lella Golfo is fearless. A former member of the Italian Senate, she is the originator and co-author of the Golfo-Mosca Quota Law in Italy which decrees that 20% of board seats in all supervisory boards of italian listed companies must be awarded to women, a quota which will rise to 30% starting in 2015 . This law is revolutionary when one considers that Italian listed company boards averaged less than 3% of women when the law was enacted. Ms. Golfo’s acts from a deep understanding that to bring radical change and equality women must have access to power. Championing hte advancement of women is not new for Ms. Golfo. In 1989 she established "Fondazione Marisa Bellisario”, named after Italtel’s first female CEO Marisa Bellisario. The Bellisario Foundation promotes entrepreneurship and management in Italy and internationally and hosts the annual "Golden Apple awards , the most prestigious and high profile award in Italy recognizing leading women and men worldwide who have had an outstanding impact in the economical, political and social progress of women, as well as entrepreneurship, politic, academic champions and newly-graduated rising stars in business.


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