Leadership & Action


Tackling Food Insecurity: Don’t Overlook the Leadership of Women and Girls March 5, 2021 (by Sarah Costa – Ms. Magazine)
COVID-19 has exposed and exacerbated the deep disparities in accessing resources worldwide, especially in conflict and crisis settings. But there are solutions, and women must be part of them.




American Democracy Finally Passes the Bechdel Test January 21, 2021 (by Monica Hesse – The Washington Post)
The Bechdel test judged artistic works based on whether there were any scenes in which two or more women had a conversation about something other than a man. Vice President Harris’s swearing in was a Bechdel test of American democracy, and after nearly 250 years, we finally passed it.



A Record Number of Women Are Serving in the 117th Congress January 15, 2021 (by Carrie Elizabeth Blazina and Drew DeSilver – Pew Research Center)
Women make up just over a quarter of all members of the 117th Congress – the highest percentage in U.S. history and a considerable increase from where things stood even a decade ago.

What’s Next for the #Resistance Now That They Don’t Have Trump to Kick Around Anymore? December 2020 (by Kara Voght – Mother Jones)
The president propelled many women to join the liberal resistance. Now they’re determined to remake their communities.

Kamala Harris Makes More History with All-Female Senior Staff Picks December 3, 2020 (by Emma Kinery – Bloomberg)
For the first time, the top three positions in the office of the vice president will be held by women — and all serving under the first woman to hold the office.

Biden Hires All-female Senior Communications Team, Names Neera Tanden Director of OMB November 29, 2020 (by Annie Linskey and Jeff Stein – The Washington Post)
President-elect Joe Biden has filled out his economics and communications teams, enlisting mostly women, including several of color, in a move that reflected his campaign pledge to create an administration that presents a diverse face to America as it tackles twin pandemic and economic crises.

How Two Industry Leaders Are Helping Women of Color Team Up and Thrive in Business November 23, 2020 (by Bianca Brosh – NBC News)
Google VP Bonita Stewart and former CBS News correspondent Jacqueline Adams share lessons from their book, “A Blessing: Women of Color Teaming Up to Lead, Empower and Thrive.”

Meet Kathrin Jansen, the Woman Leading Pfizer’s COVID-19 Vaccine Effort November 10, 2020 (by Ruth Reader – Fast Company)
The rock star scientist has a track record of producing difficult vaccines against the odds.

‘The Rise Of The New South’: Black Women Organizers Turn Georgia Bluish November 9, 2020 (by Robin Young and Allison Hagan – WBUR)
Georgia became a swing state this election after not carrying a Democratic presidential candidate since 1992. But what’s changed in the Peach State? The answer lies in the work of Black women political organizers who have been on the ground getting out the vote and empowering communities for years.

Kamala Harris, Shattering Racial and Gender Barriers, Makes History as First Woman Vice President November 7, 2020 (by Brittany Shepherd – Yahoo!News)
Sen. Kamala Harris made history three times as the first woman, first Black person and first Asian American to be elected to the vice presidency.

How Science Helped Jacinda Ardern, Labour Party Dominate New Zealand Election, Control COVID-19 Coronavirus October 17, 2020 (by Bruce Y. Lee – Forbes)
Political leaders around the world, take note of what’s happened in New Zealand. Science can be like chocolate. If you treat it well, make sure that it’s the real stuff, and use it in everything that you do, it can be your ally.

A Kidnap, Murder Plot Targeted Gretchen Whitmer. That’s No Coincidence October 9, 2020 (by Nancy Kaffer – Detroit Free Press)
Was it because she’s a woman? Of course it is. This is a governor who had to fight for her place on the ticket; male Democrats lobbied until just months before the election to replace her with someone more electable, more accomplished, more male.

How Presidential Norms and Notions of Masculinity Obscure Info About Trump’s COVID-19 October 9, 2020 (by Callum Borchers – WBUR)
Roughly 48 hours before his positive test, Trump was on a debate stage, mocking Democratic rival Joe Biden for being vigilant about facial coverings.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Becomes First Woman to Lie in State: 8 Other Strides She Made for Women September 25, 2020 (by Sara M Moniuszko, Maria Puente, Veronica Bravo – USA TODAY)
Even in death, Ruth Bader Ginsburg is making history for women. The Supreme Court associate justice, a driving force for gender equality in the United States who died last week at age 87, will be the first woman to lie in state Friday in the the U.S. Capitol.

Black Nurse Speaks Out After Being Identified as ICE Whistleblower September 16, 2020 (Biba Adams )
Dawn Wooten, who was a licensed practical nurse at the Irwin County Detention Center, has prompted calls for a federal investigation into her claims that the Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention center where she worked was performing mass hysterectomies.

“A Silent Pandemic’: Nurse at ICE Facility Blows the Whistle on Coronavirus Dangers September 14, 2020 (José Olivares, John Washington )
A nurse at the Irwin County Detention Center in Georgia is speaking out about a host of dangerous medical practices at the Immigration and Customs Enforcement facility amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Jacinda Ardern Pushes Stability Over Change in New Zealand’s ‘COVID Election’ August 9, 2020 ( )
The prime minister is pitching a mix of steady leadership and big-spending policies to voters after a world-leading coronavirus response.

Afghan All-girls Robotics Team Designs Low-cost Ventilator to Treat Coronavirus Patients July 20, 2020 (Storay Karimi )
An all-female Afghan Robotics Team, which has won international awards for its robots, started work in March on an open-source, low-cost ventilator as the coronavirus pandemic hit the war-torn nation.

Over 570 Women Registered to Run for Office, Topping 2018 Record July 14, 2020 (Zack Budryk )
The 2020 election cycle has broken 2018’s record for female candidates and includes a surge of Republican women seeking to close a partisan gender gap.

Women Are Running Like Their Lives Depend On It June 30, 2020 (Wendy Sachs )
As a global pandemic has effectively shut down American politicking as we know it, and the nation reels from protests against systemic racism, voters are turning out to elect young, diverse, female candidates who are disrupting the crusty, patriarchal model of who is electable and who should run.

How Women-Led Nations Respond to COVID: Lessons from Germany, Norway and New Zealand June 16, 2020 (Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security)
We asked ambassadors from women-led nations—Germany, Norway and New Zealand—what made their national responses to the COVID-19 global pandemic so effective.

MacKenzie Bezos and Melinda Gates Team Up on $30 Million Gender Equity Contest June 16, 2020 (Maggie McGrath)
One of the most powerful women in the world is teaming up with one of the richest women in the world—Melinda Gates and MacKenzie Bezos, respectively—to host a competition with one goal in mind: gender equality.

The U.S. Needs Sweeping Police Reform. Start by Hiring More Women. June 8, 2020 (Cari Shane
Only 12 percent of U.S. police officers are women. Could George Floyd’s death have been prevented had there been women officers on the scene? It’s likely.

Ferguson Picks Ella Jones as First African American and First Woman Mayor June 3, 2020 (St. Louis Post)
Councilwoman Ella Jones was elected mayor of Ferguson, becoming the first African American to lead the St. Louis suburb that became nationally known after a police officer killed Michael Brown, a black teen.

Pandemic Power: Black Women Mayors Shine During COVID-19 Crisis May 20, 2020 (Atlanta Daily World)
There is a group of female African American mayors of large U.S. cities who have been at the forefront of the coronavirus battle while leading their cities through this crisis of a lifetime.

Why We Need Electoral Reform Amid COVID-19 May 18, 2020 (by Lakshmi Gandhi – Supermajority)
As the country gets ready for November’s presidential election, many voters are wondering what can be done to make voting as safe as possible amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Do Women Lead Differently During a Crisis? May 8, 2020 (by Jessica N. Grounds and Kristin Haffert – Know Your Value)
In this op/ed the founders of Mine The Gap, an organization helping businesses bridge gender gaps, say we must consider what we’re missing when women aren’t at the table tackling the biggest challenge of our lifetime.

Lessons From a Siege: What I Learned From the Women in Bosnia That Can Help Us Today May 5, 2020 (by Kathy LeMay – Feminist.com)
Kathy LeMay provides five lessons she learned from the women of Bosnia, which are timely as we “begin to imagine and re-imagine a world where wars and pandemics aren’t the blueprint of our future but the faint whisper of our past.”⠀

The Women Leading the Coronavirus Response from City Hall May 4, 2020 (by Mattie Kahn – Glamour)
From Lori Lightfoot in Chicago to London Breed in San Francisco, five mayors look back on the first two months of this crisis—low moments, beacons of hope, unexpected, absurdly popular memes—and plan for an uncertain future.

Celebrate and Support the Solar Mamas this Mother’s Day May 4, 2020 (by Pat Mitchell – Pat Mitchell Media)
Mothers and grandmothers are and always have been beacons of light during troubled times, and Barefoot College has long celebrated this. To date, there are more than 3,600 Solar Mamas in 93 countries, who have returned to their villages to bring light in more ways than one.

Five Women on the Front Lines of COVID Response April 28, 2020 (UN Women)
From farming to first-response services and everything in between, women are playing an outsized role in keeping their communities safe and resilient in the face of COVID-19. Here are the stories of just five women on the front lines.

Farming for Change: Black Womxn Farmers Fight the Pandemic With a Food Revolution April 28, 2020 (by Sharon H. Chang – South Seattle Emerald)
How womxn and nonbinary farmers of color at the heart of Washington’s agrarian revival movement are moving the needle toward not only a future livable planet, but a socially just one.

“We Demand More” Coalition Is Pushing Economic and Social Relief for Women Most Impacted by the Pandemic April 27, 2020 (by Natelegé Whaley – Supermajority)
Nearly 60 women-led organizations—including Supermajority and the National Domestic Workers Alliance—announced the “We Demand More” coalition campaign, which calls on political and business leaders to meet the needs of the most vulnerable women in America in the wake of the COVID-19.

Are Female Leaders More Successful at Managing the Coronavirus Crisis? April 25, 2020 (by Jon Henley and Eleanor Ainge Roy – The Guardian)
Plenty of countries with male leaders have also done well. But few with female leaders have done badly.

Where Is America’s Jacinda Ardern? She’s Hiding in Plain Sight. April 24, 2020 (by Julie Kohler – Refinery 29)
Many of the world’s women leaders are causing a surge in “leadership envy” across the U.S.

A Second Covid Crisis Is Coming April 24, 2020 (by David Miliband and Sheryl Sandberg – Politico)
If we don’t act now, women and girls will be suffering from the pandemic’s fallout for decades to come.

Advice from Activists: How COVID-19 Is Changing Climate Activism for Young Women April 21, 2020 (UN Women)
This year on Earth Day, we asked young women and girls on the front lines of climate activism how all of us can be a part of the movement, from the safety of our own homes, and what we can we learn from how the pandemic is affecting our planet.

The Secret to Germany’s COVID-19 Success: Angela Merkel Is a Scientist April 20, 2020 (by Saskia Miller – The Atlantic)
The chancellor’s rigor in collating information, her honesty in stating what is not yet known, and her composure are paying off.

Why Do Women Make Such Good Leaders During COVID-19? April 19, 2020 (by Cami Anderson – Forbes)
Women have notably been among the strongest and most decisive leaders in response to COVID-19.

Ventilator from Old Car Parts? Afghan Girls Pursue Prototype April 19, 2020 (by Tameem Akhgar- The Associated Press)
The members of Afghanistan’s prize-winning girls’ robotics team say they’re on a life-saving mission—to build a ventilator from used car parts and help their war-stricken country battle the virus.

Countries Led by Women Have Fared Better Against Coronavirus. Why? April 18, 2020 (by Austa Somvichian-Clausen – The Hill)
An expert breaks down the qualities of a successful leader (Hint: it isn’t just about gender).

Nine Women Leaders Who Stepped Up During the Coronavirus Pandemic April 14, 2020 (by Fiona Pestana – Ms. Magazine)
As the news cycle disproportionately focuses on how white men are leading the fight against the coronavirus, Ms. has found hope in female leaders across the globe.

The City That Has Flattened the Coronavirus Curve April 12, 2020 (by Russell Berman – The Atlantic)
Mayor London Breed’s early and aggressive moves to contain the outbreak have made San Francisco a national model in fighting the pandemic.

The Secret Weapon in the Fight Against Coronavirus: Women April 11, 2020 (by Arwa Mahdawi – The Guardian)
Being a woman doesn’t make you better at handling a global pandemic–but women generally have to be better in order to become leaders.

Afghan Girls Create Ventilator with Toyota Car Parts April 10, 2020 (By Lauren Wolfe – Women’s Media Center)
In a country not known for its empowerment of women—or for its health system—five teenage girls are tackling Afghanistan’s coronavirus outbreak head-on.

Climate Justice in the Time of Covid-19: Five Lessons from Women and Girls Leading the Fight  April 8, 2020 (By Pat Mitchell and Sundaa Bridgett-Jones – PatMitchellMedia.com)
COVID-19 is a health, economic and social crisis, but it also holds out an opportunity for the world to move forward into a more equitable and green recovery.

Women Are Leading Us Through the Pandemic. They Should Be Leading Our Country Next  April 6, 2020 (Erin Loos Cutraro – Fast Company)
Women are the majority of critical healthcare workers, grocery clerks, and caregivers while the country is working from home. Those experiences will make them much better leaders.

Periods Don’t Stop for Pandemics, So She Brings Pads to Women in Need April 5, 2020 (by – The New York Times)
Coronavirus has led to a rush on menstrual products. As with other supplies, those who can afford to hoard have done so, leaving women with lower incomes without basic essentials.

The Coronavirus Crisis Is Proving We Need More Women Governors and Mayors April 4, 2020 (by Barbara Lee – Newsweek)
From Michigan’s Gretchen Whitmer to Chicago’s Lori Lightfoot, women are stepping up to lead the fight against COVID-19.

The Eye of the Hurricane: Leadership in the Age of COVID-19 March 27, 2020 (by Arianna Huffington – Thrive Global)
A new playbook for leading in troubled times.

What Does Feminist Leadership Look Like in a Pandemic? March 21, 2020 (by Leila Billing – Medium.com)
An intersectional analysis helps us to understand how the virus disproportionately impacts specific groups of people, who, because of their intersecting identities, face unique forms of burden.

How Female Prime Ministers Are Leading in This Time of Crisis March 20, 2020 (by – Women’s Agenda)
Three incredible Prime Ministers are demonstrating particularly heartening excellent resolve during this pandemic. Oh, and they just happen to be women.

People Are Fighting the Coronavirus With Mutual Aid Efforts to Help Each Other March 16, 2020 (by Lucy Diavolo – Teen Vogue)
An explosion of mutual aid networks is happening online.

COVID Gendered

COVID Gendered provides news stories, research reports, action items, events, and other forms of content that look at the global crisis through a gendered lens, amplifying efforts to create change.

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