“Women hold up half the sky” – Chinese proverb
By Leah Armstrong, Chief Executive Officer
For three days in September, I had the privilege to be a part of an historic discussion on women’s participation in the economy at the APEC Women and the Economy Summit in San Francisco. The theme of the summit was to highlight the economic potential of women; to lift their families, communities and nations prosperity; along with addressing the barriers that are blocking women and girls in achieving their potential.
I was asked to participate in the High Level Policy Dialogue and was surprised to also be named as a ‘Woman of Innovation’ at the summit. Forty-two women from each of the APEC economies were honoured, including fellow Australian, Lynette Mayne of Work Wear World.
The Summit keynote by Hillary Rodham Clinton did not disappoint. Secretary Clinton called for action and big and bold ideas. “A lot of what we are doing is not achieving the outcomes that we are seeking. There is a stimulative and ripple effect that kicks in when women have greater access to jobs and the economic fortunes of their families, their communities and their countries.”