WIMN’s Voices: A Group Blog on Women, Media, AND…

Why Women in Media Matter to the Future of Progressive Leadership

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June 18th, 2009

By Guest Blogger Jennifer Nedeau
Chief Technology Officer, New Leaders Council

It is with much gratitude that I am able to honor Jennifer L. Pozner, Executive Director of Women in Media & News (and editor of WIMN’s Voices) with a “40 Under 40” Award from New Leaders Council.

The “40 Under 40” Awards were created to help recognize the hard work of a diverse group of leaders who exemplify the spirit of progressive political entrepreneurship. More than 300 names were submitted to NLC’s panel of judges – which included Fiona Ma, California Assembly Majority Whip as well as three other private-sector and political entrepreneurs. It is clear why Pozner, as well as other media mavens such as Jessica Valenti of Feministing.com and Jaclyn Friedman, the Program Director for Center for New Words and one of the major forces behind the annual WAM! (Women, Action and Media) conference, were independently chosen to be recognized among the top 40 leaders in the country.

Women in media are crucial to the future of progressive leadership because they can often best represent the issues that matter most to progressives. Women own a large stake in issues of equality, civil rights, a stable economy, a clean environment, accessible health care and education, among other progressive topics. More women need to be seen on television, read in newspapers, heard on the radio and seen in new media forums in order to make a positive impact in the progressive movement. However, just as consciousness raising and media appearances matter - it is also incredibly important to stop and take a moment to thank those who ensure that the infrastructure exists to make this progress possible. Pozner founded WIMN to strengthen that infrastructure and transform the media landscape for women. For eight years, Women In Media & News has worked to increase diverse women’s presence and power in the public debate.

Similar to what Pozner, Valenti and Friedman have been able to do for women in media, activism and politics, NLC also works to create a corps of diverse and highly-skilled new leaders who rise to the top of their fields and improve the progressive infrastructure necessary for strong democracy, social justice, and equal opportunity.

NLC is proud to honor women like Pozner who work tirelessly to increase women’s presence and power in the public debate through media analysis, education, advocacy and reform. It is the type of leadership that NLC admires and encourages within our highly skilled five-month leadership institute that trains and supports the next generation of progressive political entrepreneurs who are leading industries, setting trends, and building institutions that support robust civic and political life in a global America.

If you’d like to be there when Pozner and Valenti are honored at our New York event, or when Friedman is honored at our Boston event (or if you’d like to attend one of our “40 under 40” Events in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington DC) between June 22 – 26, please visit: http://newleaderscouncil.org/events.html

You can see a full list of 2009 winners here: http://newleaderscouncil.org/40under40_2009.html

Guest Blogger Jennifer Nedeau works full-time as the Director of Digital Strategy at Air America Media and also serves as the Editor of the Women’s Rights blog at Change.org. In her free time, she volunteers for New Leaders Council, a progressive leadership training program.

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