IN 1987, Congress declared March National Women’s History Month. Every year, for the past 30 years, a special Presidential proclamation is issued to honor the extraordinary achievements and contributions of women in history and contemporary society.
Every week, for nearly the past four years, Sandi Klein’s Conversations with Creative Women has honored, celebrated and shared the accomplishments of women from all walks of life. As I reflect on the 200 conversations I’ve had since then, I continue to be awed and humbled by my guests’ stories and their eagerness to tell them. They include in no special order: The President of Haskell Indian Nations University in Kansas; the award-winning photojournalist behind ground breaking documentation of the hidden world of domestic violence; the under-30 climate change specialist; one of the few female comedy writers working in late night television; the doctor who also happens to be a professional dancer; the Pakistani computer scientist turned independent filmmaker; the only female trombonist playing with a major American symphony; the co-founders of the largest educational giving circle that aims to ‘change the world;’ the artist lauded for her larger-than-life paintings of ‘real’ female bodies; and the children’s book author who tackles taboo topics like death and divorce.
I’ve had conversations with playwrights, directors, actresses, singers, dancers, comics, museum curators, educators, chefs, social activists, scientists, businesswomen/entrepreneurs. I’ve had conversations with gay, straight, old, young women. I’ve had conversations with White, African-American, Hispanic, Asian, Native American and Mixed Race women. I have found the tie that binds them all, is their amazing sense of self. Their journeys may have been challenging, but they never gave up, never let someone else define them. Their stories are inspiring, empowering, and in some cases, jaw-dropping. I have learned so much from these women who were willing to get personal with a total stranger.
So, as we celebrate National Women’s History Month, I continue to celebrate the women I’ve met and the women I’ve yet to meet. I am both grateful and blessed.