Last fall, I joined an amazing group of women. We were convened by Take the Lead, an organization seeking to uplift women into leadership roles in all kinds of industries. Over the course of three months, we learned new skills from the program trainers and each other to help us reach our goals in our careers and lives.
Among the most valuable things Take the Lead, its founder Gloria Feldt and her team, gave us though, was each other. These 50 women have already begun helping each other with opportunities, advice and moral support. What a difference it makes when you have champions for your career!
There are, however, many more women journalists who could use champions.
So some of us in the cohort have made it part of our missions to raise the profiles of journalists, contemporary and in historical, in our industry. We’re taking on Wikipedia, which notoriously under-represents women. According to the Wikimedia Foundation, only 18 percent of the site’s biographical articles are about women. Our challenge is this: Increase the representation of women journalists so that they have more opportunities and can take their rightful places as those who shape how we understand our world through news media.
There is no easy solution to bringing gender parity to newsroom leadership. But here’s one small way you can help.
Step 1: Join the campaign at bit.ly/womendonews. You’ll get an email to help guide you and get updates about the project.
Step 2: Add two nominations of women journalists you think should have articles on Wikipedia.
We’ll meet virtually on November 2 and 16, 2019 to harness our power and collectively make change.
And to the women journalists who are reading this: Wikipedia is just one step to getting you the recognition you deserve. It’s a start, not an ending. Just know, you have a lot of people behind you who want to see you succeed.
Speaking of champions, I’m writing this from Louisiana where the International Women’s Media Foundation has convened an excellent group of courageous journalists to give us training to handle hostile reporting situations. Here’s where you can seek out this training too.
At the end of the week, I’ll be at the Online News Association annual conference in New Orleans. If you’re there too, please message me!