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e-Connections: March 2013
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President's Message

Dear colleagues and friends,

March is a month of calendar milestones for the world’s women. On March 8, the world celebrated International Women’s Day with front page stories in many of the world’s publications and bell-ringing in world cities such as Istanbul, Reykjavik and Paris. TIAW in particular joined Global Board Ready Women in celebrating the opening of the GBRW database to Executive Search Firms and Global Corporations around the world as well as giving access to Board Ex for all women in the GBRW database.

TIAW’s board met in New York City on March 8 and appropriately considered the work yet to do in terms of advancing the economic empowerment of women worldwide. Canada’s Globe and Mail ran a story on the creative women who have inspired and led others to success, and I was very pleased to contribute comments on behalf of TIAW for the article

The U.S. celebrates Women’s History Month in March, recognizing and remembering the historic moments in the advancement of women.

In many countries, we are welcoming spring and the Easter season and the promise of renewal that comes with both. For me, renewed hope and inspiration comes from remarkable women who are mentoring, lending, teaching and leading other women towards economic empowerment. This is the purpose to which TIAW and its member organizations are committed. I ask for you to be renewed in your own efforts to help other women through the resources and connections made possible through your TIAW membership.

I also ask you to recommend other associations and individuals to TIAW for membership. While everything we seek can be accomplished one woman at a time, with many women we are utterly formidable.


Lisa Kaiser Hickey


2013 World of Difference Awards Nominations Open April 1st


Each year, the TIAW World of Difference 100 Award recognizes women and men who advance the economic empowerment of women, whether on a small scale in the developing world, or effecting change in the boardrooms of the business capitals of the world. Started in 2008, the TIAW World of Difference 100 Award has garnered worldwide attention for the high caliber of achievement and change leadership demonstrated by its recipients, the impressive reach the awards throughout the world and by their growing impact. Each year, the awards celebrate the inspiring, courageous, tenacious and creative achievements of the extraordinary champions of women’s economic advancement. By 2012, the word had spread globally and TIAW received nominations from 75 different countries on six continents.

Now, you can be part of this important movement to honour and encourage women’s economic independence and power. Because when women flourish, families, communities and countries flourish alongside them. Take a few minutes to think of someone who you know has truly made a difference to the empowerment of women. Whether your candidate has a high profile or works anonymously, whether they move in power circles or small villages, whether their impact is local, regional or international, tell us how your candidate has made a difference.

Nominations open for the World of Difference 100 Awards on April 1, 2013. Submitting a nomination online is easy. Just fill out the form on the TIAW website with details of your coordinates and those of your nominee and then tell us, IN 300 WORDS OR LESS, how your candidate has paved the way for women’s economic empowerment in any ONE of the categories. Tell us the story of how she – or he – has overcome barriers or persisted in difficult circumstances, or perhaps how they have been inspiring or educating others to support the economic empowerment of women. If you can include some numbers or statistics to tell us what the impact has been, that is even better (but not mandatory).

The TIAW World of Difference 100 Awards are inspiring, motivating and uplifting. Add your voice to this international choir that is truly making all the difference in the world.


One Empowered Woman at a Time

by Phyllis Reardon, M. Ed.

On March 8th we celebrated International Women’s Day (IWD). This year the United Nations choose a theme with a focus on decreasing violence against women. Although the theme changes yearly the basic message remains the same. Collectively we want women of the world to live a life of equality and freedom. Freedom and equality will find their place within economic empowerment. Economic Empowerment will only exist once women have developed Self Empowerment skills.

Research shows that self empowerment is essential to all success in life. We need as women leaders to continue to work with women of all ages to help them develop, maintain and enhance Self Empowerment skills.

The International Alliance for Women and their counter parts around the world fully understand the calls to action presented yearly by the International Women’s Day theme. They make it their passion to work daily for women like you and me, women who have made it to economic empowerment, women who desire to bring about change in their life and women who are at present afraid to even have a desire for this change.

In recognition of International Women’s Day I offer you your own call to action.

  • First, reflect on your past year, make a list all of your accomplishments no matter how small you might think they are. This is truly self empowering.
  • Next, take one small action to help build the self empowerment of another woman in your life.

Together we will change the world, one empowered woman at a time.


Does Pregnancy Fail When Walking Fails?

by Sefakor Grateful-Miranda Komabu-Pomeyie

Earlier this month we celebrated International Women’s Day but every day we encourage everyone, especially women, to be their neighbor’s keepers in all spheres of life. Every woman is special and deserves the same treatment, love and attention as another. Women with disabilities have the same feelings that other women have. So it is important that we do not look at women with disabilities with awe when they get pregnant or make any sort of funny comment about them. Some have their own fears about what they are carrying in their bellies. I guess this happens to all women the moment they get pregnant, but in the case of women with disabilities,we need to be sensitive so we don’t we add insult to their injury.

As Lisa Iezzoni indicated in her book When Walking Fails indeed, "life should not stop when walking fails”. Pregnancy does not fail when walking, seeing, hearing, and thinking fail. We will encourage our health care professionals, political representatives and policy implementers to remove every barrier they put in front of women with disabilities to prevent them from living an independent life.

This is not about sympathy or special treatment, but a basic function which should be accessible to all, despite any political interest. When walking fails, it might be only the limbs or legs which are not functioning regularly. All the other senses or parts of the body work perfectly hence, need the same care and attention like any other person.Everybody must change his or her attitude towards disability issues because disability is everybody’s lot anytime. Change now!!!

Powerful Women in Business Continue To Influence Other Powerful Women 

by Lisa Marie Platske

When I left my action-packed career in law enforcement to launch international leadership training and consulting company Upside Thinking, Inc. eight (8) years ago, I began looking at leadership from different angles.

Taking the research from my graduate thesis on formal and informal mentoring and its incredible influence on leadership, I began polling business leaders on their keys to success.

While my conversations were informal, they were in-depth and the results remained consistent with my original research in which respondents shared how one person’s impact had changed their direction and vision of future possibilities.

When you look at today’s female business leaders,you learn that they have been shaped and influenced by real people – family members like parents and grandparents as well as past and present leaders.

Interviews conducted by Dan Fastenberg and TIME Magazine in late 2010 revealed that Fortune’s 50 most powerful women in business were each influenced by other powerful women.

Isabelle Ealet, Global head of Commodities for Goldman Sachs, spoke about being inspired by Zainab Salbi, the founder of Women for Women, a foundation engaging women from around the world who are survivors of war and violence to help one another. Maureen Chiquet, Global CEO for Chanel, shared how she is inspired by Simone Veil, an advocate for women’s rights who survived imprisonment in Auschwitz in World War II and went on to be the first President of the European Parliament. Susan Wojcicki, Senior VP, Google revealed that she was influenced by Marie Curie, the 1st woman to win a Nobel Prize, because of for her deep commitment and passion to her work as well as to her daughters, one of whom also won a Nobel Prize. Inspired by the strength and wisdom of Golda Meir, prime minister of Israel from 1969 - 1974, Joanne Maguire, EVP Space Systems, Lockheed Martin, disclosed how she was in awe of Golda’s ability to lead Israel during a time of great turbulence and danger (the Munich Olympics, Yom Kippur War).

As John Maxwell stated, "Leadership is influence…nothing more and nothing less.”

Every generation builds on what the past generation has accomplished in hopes to make strides to go further, turning possibilities into realities.

And, certainly many of these women serve or will serve as another woman’s source of inspiration and passion – whether today or in the future.

As Women’s History Month comes to a close, let us give thanks for the women who challenged us to push out into the deep and make the commitment to expand our circle of influence by mentoring another woman this year.

New Members of the Board of Directors

Meet TIAW's New Vice of President of Marketing: Terri Hall


Please welcome newly elected Terri Hall, President of Doubletake Studios in Florida, as Vice President of Marketing. Terri is an accomplished marketing and advertising professional and certified Woman Business Enterprise (WBE) with a growing international clientele and cache of awards. As a seasoned board member for several other organizations,Terri’s leadership skills will be invaluable to TIAW.



Meet TIAW's Interim Chair of the Micro-Credit Program:

Maxine Westaway



Please welcome again, Maxine Westaway, Global Ambassador and

Lifetime Member, as the Interim Chair of the Micro-Credit Program. Maxine helped found the Micro-Credit Program and has served in many capacities for the organization including terms as President and later Executive Director. She has proven to be an indispensable asset to the Board of Directors even in her recent retirement.


History of International Women's Day



International Women's Day has been observed since the early 1900's. The 2013 theme presented by the website was "The Gender Agenda: Gaining Momentum". In 2012, their theme was "Connecting Girls, Inspiring Futures” which supported the United Nation's (UN) first International Day of the Girl celebrated on October 11, 2012.

On February 28, 1909, in the United States, the first National Woman's Day (NWD) was observed. In 1910, Clara Zetkin proposed the idea of a celebration every year in every country on the same day to champion their women’s demands. The suggestion was unanimously approved at the International Conference of Working Women resulting in the International Women's Day.

For the first time in 1911, IWD was honored in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland. In 1975, the United Nations designated that year as 'International Women's Year'.

Now, each year on March 8th, numerous worldwide events are held to celebrate women’s achievements as well as empower and inspire them. Some men have started their own traditions and use this day as an opportunity to honor the women in their lives. In some countries IWD is the equivalent to another Mother's Day. Celebrations, business conferences, political rallies, government activities are held each year in honor of this day. This year the Global Board Ready Initiative opened their searchable database to Executive Search Firms, Global Corporations and Board Ex to commemorate the day.

According to the IWD website, International Women’s Day is officially a holiday in Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, China (for women only), Cuba, Georgia, Guinea-Bissau, Eritrea, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Madagascar (for women only), Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Nepal (for women only), Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Vietnam and Zambia.

You can read about the thousands of global events that took place by country this year on their website. The UK was one of the countries with the most events. It’s a great way to get ideas to celebrate IWD in 2014.

Thank you for reading our March issue of e-Connections, if you enjoyed it - please share it with your network by using the social sharing buttons above. If you are not a subscriber, please sign up today.

 Are you interested in submitting an article for inclusion in one of our upcoming issues or becoming a contributing editor? If so, please contact for more information.

About Us

Who are We?

The International Alliance for Women is organized as a 501(c)3 foundation in the USA. We are a global community of economically empowered women across all continents that welcome you to our members’ cities and countries, connecting you with their networks of business and community professionals.

What's our Purpose?

The International Alliance for Women connects leading women’s organizations worldwide to leverage their reach and resources, creating a global community of economically empowered women.

Through our Global Programs we seek to make a difference in the world for those women who are not empowered economically.