Favianna Rodriguez on the Power of Art to Heal Polarization

Editor’s Note: This interview in our Feminist Giving IRL series features Favianna Rodriguez, President of The Center for Cultural Power, a national organization investing in artists and storytellers as agents of positive social change.

Favianna Rodriguez, courtesy of Favianna Rodriguez
  1. What do you wish you had known when you started out in your profession?

I wish I’d known more about the racial and gender barriers that exist for women of color leaders in the non-profit sector, particularly the arts and culture space. I knew how to pitch my ideas and raise money, but I lacked information on how to navigate situations in which I was experiencing unequal treatment due to my gender and racial identity. I was in many spaces where the safety of women was not prioritized. Unfortunately, over the last 20 years of being an institutional leader, I’ve experienced numerous uncomfortable situations including sexual harassment, the theft of my ideas by male leaders, being bullied by men when I challenged sexist assumptions, and being trained to lead in a boy’s club type of approach. Before, I didn’t have the language or tools to navigate these situations. But that has since changed, and I’m incredibly thankful for that because it gives me the opportunity to create safe spaces for other female and gender non-confirming leaders to thrive.

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Texas Women’s Foundation Gives $12.9 Million with 400 New Grants

Texas Women’s Foundation invests with over 400 grants and more than $12 million dollars to community programs in the state.

Empowering women and girls to build stronger and more equitable communities is the chief goal of the Texas Women’s Foundation (TXWF). This dedication has continued recently as they have invested $12.9 million dollars in the community over the past year.

Girls Embracing Mothers was one of the grantees of The Resilience Fund, one of the grant-making vehicles of the Texas Women’s Foundation (Image Credit: Girls Embracing Mothers)

This sum was donated over the course of the organization’s fiscal year: July 1st, 2020 to June 30th, 2021. Of this total, $10.8 million was invested in the form of 416 grants. $2.1 million was given to specific programs with goals that align with the Texas Women’s Foundation’s work.

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New Nonprofit Seeks To Find The Lost Women Of Science

The Lost Women of Science Initiative, started by Katie Hafner and Amy Scharf, is on a mission to fund and raise awareness about women in STEM.

The Lost Women of Science Initiative was launched to support women in STEM and advocate for their work throughout history and in the future. (Image credit: Lost Women of Science)
The Lost Women of Science Initiative was launched to support women in STEM and advocate for their work throughout history and in the future. (Image credit: Lost Women of Science)

Journalist and author Katie Hafner, and bioethicist Amy Scharf, announced the launch of the Lost Women of Science Initiative, a new educational nonprofit organization created to research and promote the stories of the forgotten women of science. The initiative’s mission is to raise awareness of the pivotal role women have played in scientific discoveries and innovations, and to promote interest in STEM education and careers – especially among girls and young women. Harvey Mudd College, long a leader in STEM education, has signed on as fiscal sponsor, and early funding has come from The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and Schmidt Futures. The initiative will also partner with Barnard College, one-third of whose graduates are STEM majors.

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Michelob ULTRA $100M Pledge Shifts Marketing to be Gender-Inclusive

Michelob ULTRA has committed $100 million to make its marketing gender-inclusive, with the goal of increasing the visibility of women in sports.

Women beer drinkers may have more good news to celebrate as beer brands like Michelob begin to pay more attention to their marketshare. (Photo by Elevate on Unsplash)

As one of the top selling beer brands in the country, Michelob ULTRA believes that every athlete deserves to experience an equal level of joy in sports. But women’s sports don’t always receive the same level of coverage in the media, which is a critical factor in ensuring that female athletes are paid equally. That’s why Michelob ULTRA is committing $100 million over the next five years to increase visibility for women’s sports through:

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How Could Biden Enhance Effectiveness of New Gender Policy Council?

A call to action has been issued by the Center for American Progress to the White House Gender Policy Council.

The Center for American Progress put out a report that includes several strong and worthwhile suggestions for the Biden administration. The goal of the report is focused on how the current administration can advance gender equality on both U.S soil and abroad. 

Image Credit: Lindsay Lamont on Unsplash

The crux of the report is focused on the White House Gender Policy council and how it can expand the pre-existing Women, Peace and Security Act (WPS) of 2017. 

WPS has actually existed since 2000, starting after being recognized by the U.N Security Council. Since the implementation of WPS in the United States, a requirement is in place that every four years specific governmental departments and agencies must incorporate WPS  into their work. Further, they are required to host WPS-specific training for personnel, to track the progress of implementation, and to report to Congress on this progress. 

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Old Navy’s Size-Inclusive Shopping Model Sets a New Standard

Old Navy is setting a new standard for size inclusivity with BODEQUALITY, offering a wider range of sizes than any other value retailer.

Old Navy is expanding their available sizes, redesigning their clothes to take down unrealistic standards, and raising awareness of body inclusivity with its BODEQUALITY campaign. (Image credit: Business Wire)
Old Navy is expanding their available sizes, redesigning their clothes to take down unrealistic standards, and raising awareness of body inclusivity with its BODEQUALITY campaign. (Image credit: Old Navy)

Old Navy is revolutionizing the shopping experience with the launch of BODEQUALITY. Beginning on August 20, Old Navy will redefine size inclusion, offering every one of its women’s styles, in every size, with no price difference. As a brand committed to the democracy of style, Old Navy will be the first value retailer to offer sizes 0-30 and XS-4X for all women’s styles at price parity. With this launch, the brand is reimagining the shopping environment in all stores and online to be more size inclusive, giving women everywhere the fashion and experience that they deserve.

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Women’s Funding Network Announces New Additions to Board

The Women’s Funding Network has announced the addition of Leela Bilmes Goldstein, PhD, Kelly Nevins, and Gina Jackson to its Board.

Leela Bilmes Goldstein, PhD, Kelly Nevins, and Gina Jackson will have taken their seats on the WFN Board of Directors on September 7th, 2021.
Leela Bilmes Goldstein, PhD, Kelly Nevins, and Gina Jackson will have taken their seats on the Women’s Funding Network Board of Directors on September 7th, 2021.

Women’s Funding Network announced the appointments of three new additions to its board of directors: Leela Bilmes Goldstein, PhD, Gina Jackson, and Kelly Nevins. The newly appointed members lead community-based women’s funds with national impact for gender equity and justice advocacy. They will have taken their seats on September 7th, 2021. 

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Women in Crowdfunding: What the New WPI Data Says

Women’s Philanthropy Institute has come out with a new report about trends involving women in crowdfunding campaigns.

Acting as a supplement to previous research, the report reveals a number of key findings that fundraisers should keep in mind when faced with women donors. Charitable giving is in high demand, thanks to the impact of Covid-19, and therefore these trends are valuable for all involved in the crowdfunding world.

Gender and Crowdfunding Cover (Image Credit: Women’s Philanthropy Institute)

Although it was found that women and men have given roughly the same amount to crowdfunding fundraisers, women were more likely to donate in a typical year. 34% of women were found to donate in a year, while only around 31% of men donated. Overall, roughly 40% of men and women have donated to a crowdfunding movement at one point in their life. 

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Cannabis One of Best Industries for Gender Parity, Says AskGrowers

Irene Stepanenko, CEO of AskGrowers, reflects on gender equality in the cannabis industry as a celebration of Women’s Equality Day.

AskGrowers is a community of people working in the cannabis industry to provide trusted product advice and information. (Image credit: Unsplash)
AskGrowers is a community of people working in the cannabis industry to provide trusted product advice and information. (Image credit: Unsplash)

Women’s Equality Day is celebrated annually on August 26 to commemorate the adoption of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which prohibits states and the federal government from denying citizens the right to vote based on sex. The right of women to vote and participate in society and various industries was first enshrined at the state level. In practice, women still continue to struggle for equal opportunities and privileges. This sentiment was echoed in former President Obama’s Proclamation on August 25, 2016, “Today, as we celebrate the anniversary of this hard-won achievement and pay tribute to the trailblazers and suffragists who moved us closer to a more just and prosperous future, we resolve to protect this constitutional right and pledge to continue fighting for equality for women and girls.”

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The Brain Health Gap and How It is Hurting Women

Data reveals how women suffer disparities in health funding, especially related to brain disorders. As a result, funding for women’s brain health is alarmingly insufficient and contributing to expensive long-term treatment costs.

Women have been coming out and speaking against the inequities they face in health care. For years, women have been saying that the healthcare field has not had their best interests at heart. They frequently have expressed that the medical community has treated them with dismissal and misdiagnosis. 

WHAM’s research shows a deep disparity in funding for women’s brain health. (Image credit: WHAM)

New data reveals this to be especially poignant in terms of women dealing with brain health disorders. An organization by the name of WHAM (Women’s Health Access Matters), released a report about this data. 

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