Victory! Augusta National Golf Club Admits Women At Last

Martha Burke has balls. And thanks to her leadership, now at least two women will have the privilege of chasing golf balls around the Augusta National Golf Club’s manicured course.

Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and South Carolina financier and former banker Darla Moore have become the first female members in the club’s 80-year history.

Burk, who for the last nine years persisted in organizing to gain membership for women in the club that represents the pinnacle of power and influence, can finally, deservedly, celebrate success.

Burk explained the history in Women’s eNews last April when the august male-only golf club once again refused to let a woman wear its vaunted green members’ jacket at its annual Masters Tournament:

Well, the big day for the big boys at Augusta National Golf Club came and went without a woman showing up in the green jacket that denotes membership. The particular woman in question was Virginia Rometty, CEO of IBM, the leading corporate sponsor of Augusta’s Masters Golf Tournament.

For those who don’t follow news of puffed-up men chasing little balls around a green course, the club has always been male-only, and resisted extreme pressure nine years ago from women’s groups, led by the National Council of Women’s Organizations, to open up to female members.

The debate raged for nearly a year, complete with death threats to the NCWO chair, yours truly.

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She’s Doing It: 5 Things Candy Crowley and Helen Gurley Brown Have in Common – and One Thing They Couldn’t

Aside from Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan’s frighteningly extreme position on Medicare, the top news this week has been all women all the time.


On Monday, August 13, the Commission on Presidential Debates announced that for the first time since Carole Simpson in 1992, a woman—CNN’s “State of the Union” host and chief political correspondent Candy Crowley—will moderate a presidential debate.

Crowley, 61, has won many awards for political reporting during stellar career. She graduated from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College—my friend Amy Litzenberger is sure that women find their voices in all-female college settings—and rose from a Washington DC radio newsroom assistant through the Associated Press and NBC ranks before joining CNN news in 1987.  Along the way, she covered every presidential campaign and convention since Jimmy Carter.

On the same day Crowley’s selection was announced, Cosmopolitan Magazine’s iconic former editor-in-chief and the author of the 1962 game-changing best seller Sex and the Single Girl, Helen Gurley Brown, died in Manhattan at age 90.

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She’s Doing It: Women’s Golf Evangelist Joan Cavanaugh

I get the power of golf. That’s why I took it as my physical education in college. And I garnered the only “C” in my life. I’d have failed had it not been for the written final exam that brought my dismal playing score up from the tank.

So I chuckled when I received this e-mail from Joan Cavanaugh, former Dominican nun, creator of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s recorded tours, teacher, entrepreneur, and the founder of the Boardroom Golf Institute:

“I listened to you on the Takeaway and thought this is a woman who should and would enjoy the benefits of the golf game…I would really like you to join me next Thursday at the business golf workshop. Golf is a great strategy for making new business relationships with men as well as women. It will be a fun packed day and you will go away educated about the game, elevate and empowered to play the game.”

Oh, if she only knew, I thought. I politely declined and thought that would be that.

Instead, she wrote back, and I discovered one of the most fascinating women around.

Her second epistle began cheerily, “I just opened a fortune cookie at lunch and I think the message has always been my mantra. ‘Enthusiasm is the greatest asset in the world. It beats money, power, and influence.’”

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She’s Doing It With Money: Tamia Gallego and Women in the Black

Did you know? Today, August 1, is National Girlfriends Day .

Google it. You can find suggestions for sharing tips with your girlfriends about their personal health, 10 Ways to Celebrate — fun things like going to a spa and niceties like writing a personal thank you note — and even girlfriend humor about why it’s better to be a female (“We got off the Titanic first.” “We don’t look like a frog in a blender when we dance.”).

But if you really want to do something of lasting value for your girlfriends, you might want to turn them onto Tamia Gallego’s blog.  It’s called Women In The Black  and it’s a self-described “community where like minded women discuss personal finance, saving, investing and ‎building wealth.‎”

Come to think about it, do it for yourself too!

A banker with a CPA by day and an advocate for women’s financial literacy by night, Tamia lives in Sydney, Australia. Her information and advice are valuable for all of us girlfriends around the globe.  In addition to her website, she offers a free daily newsletter with practical tips on personal finance and encouragement for the women (and she says also some men) who subscribe.

Tamia hopes eventually to secure corporate sponsors for her work, but for now she and her husband are supporting the “passion project” as she calls it.

Tamia’s posts are especially aimed at younger women in order to help them get on the best financial foot for life. She pointed out to me in an e-mail that because women typically earn less than men, we also end up with less in our retirement funds. Ouch—I can vouch for that.

I recommend you return to Women in the Black periodically for useful posts  on personal finance ranging from advice about buying a business to tips for maximizing the money that is available to us but that we sometimes fail to collect.

I asked if I could repost her piece called “Know Your Worth” to share with all my, um, girlfriends, and she graciously agreed.

Here’s the post in full, with a big thanks to Tamia for kind words about No Excuses

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Interview: How to Be Self-Conscious

As the absurdity of right-wing political figures’ pathological obsession with women’s uteruses continues, many people ask why this is happening now and what to do about it. In this Woman of the Week interview with Anna Louie Sussman for the Women in the World Foundation, Gloria speaks about how women can act, using what we’ve got (that’s Power Tool #3) to embrace our power to insist on our right to our bodies, our right to financial stability.

The article, excerpted here, was originally published January 24, 2012, and can be read in full on the Women in the World website.


Everything you need to know about Gloria Feldt can be gleaned from her email signature: “Warmest Regards and No Excuses, Gloria.” Her superlative compassion and conviction, combined with her intelligence and charisma, have carried her from teenage motherhood in West Texas to a thirty-year career with the reproductive health provider and advocacy group Planned Parenthood Federation of America, which she directed from 1996 until 2005, when she resigned.

Her most recent book, No Excuses, examines women’s relationship to power with an honesty and nuance often glossed over in media discussions. We talked with her about the current state of reproductive freedom in America and how women can transform their relationship with power.

Women in the World Foundation: What led you to this issue of women and power?

Gloria Feldt: In 2008, I was writing an article for Elle magazine about the many organizations that help women run for office. They are legion, and they raise millions of dollars, but women are still less than half as likely to even think about running for office as men. What I found was that the problem is no longer that women have a hard time running: the doors are open. Voters trust women more, women are now as capable of raising money, and when they do run, they are just as likely to win.

But not enough of them are running,

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She’s Doing It: Racing Champion Robyn Benincasa’s Leadership Essentials

Today’s She’s Doing It features a guest post from Robyn Benincasa, a two-time Adventure Racing World Champion, Guinness World Record distance kayaker, full-time fire fighter and leadership expert.

After fighting back from crippling osteoarthritis hip surgery at age 41, she is launching Project Athena, a non-profit that encourages women who’ve endured life-altering medical set-backs to try athletic pursuits they have always dreamed of doing. The project pays their expenses and provides coaching and equipment for whatever sport you decide to try. It is a survivor helping survivors project with the goal of women helping women.

Here, Robyn shares what she’s learned about how to take a team from ordinary to extraordinary, her analysis of leadership styles, and how to change and/or use them effectively in business.

When we are faced with a challenge, whether it’s in sports, academic, business or relationships, many of us operate out of fear of failure.

We focus our attention and efforts on not falling short, on trying to stay just one step ahead. But the greatest team builders think differently. Sure, they are cognizant of the possibility of failure, and they prepare to deal with the things that go sideways, but their main focus is on doing what it takes to win versus simply not lose.

For Maximum Performance, Hope is a better place than Fear

When a team member gives up hope and says “it’s over. There is no way out for us,” brainstorming is shut down and entropy takes over our souls. That’s not to say we shouldn’t master the tactical agility to make a U-turn whenever necessary because that’s an important skill. But the best team builders can even position a U-Turn in a positive light, as merely a new set of challenges.

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She’s Doing It: Jane Roberts’ 10 Years Making Global Women’s Rights Reality

This is a guest post by a courageous leader for women globally. Jane Roberts saw an injustice and took action to set things right. On this July 11, World Population Day, join me in support of her efforts to raise awareness and money to ensure that women around the world can have healthy pregnancies when they choose and access to preventive family planning services to plan and space their childbearing.

Also on 11 July, the UK Government and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, with UNFPA and other partners, will host the London Summit on Family Planning, a groundbreaking convocation on family planning. The aim of the summit it to mobilize global policy, financing, commodity, political will, and service delivery commitments to support the rights of an additional 120 million women and girls in the world’s poorest countries to use contraceptive information, services and supplies, without coercion or discrimination, by 2020.

July 22, 2002, ten years ago this month, I read in the Los Angeles Times Colin Powell’s announcement that the United States of America, my country, was not going to release the $34 million Congress had approved for the U.N. Population Fund. Powell, a proponent of UNFPA, sold his soul.

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Is 2012 the Breakthrough Moment f or Women Leaders?

After a week in which women debated Anne-Marie Slaughter’s contention about Why Women Still Can’t Have It All, a wave of powerful articles challenging Slaughter are finally appearing. Dana Theus says that women who are at or as near the top as Facebook COO (and its latest board member) Sheryl Sandberg and Slaughter need to woman up and “own this power they have to choose how to spend their energy, and talk about it in powerful ways that honor people’s choices, then we’ll begin to build a culture that honors, supports and encourages the ‘balance of powers‘ needed at the top.”

And Gayle Tzemach Lemmon says we should be teaching girls they CAN have it all—even if they can’t.

I believe that following Theus’s and Lemmon’s advice would change everything. And more importantly, this is the moment to do so.

It’s the moment when women can lead and live without limits.

Why am I so confident?

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In Which I Reveal a Painful Salary (non) Negotiation Truth

Census Bureau statistics cite that women on average earn about 77 cents for every dollar earned by men. On Tuesday, the Senate GOP blocked the Paycheck Fairness Act, introduced by Democrats to the senate floor.

This promising legislation would have bolstered the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, barring employers from retaliating against workers who inquire about pay disparities.

What can we as individual women do retroactively to create a work life for ourselves in which we don’t have to resort to investigating discrimination by our employers?

In this interview, Gloria encourages women to define their own terms: at meetings, “Say the first word, say the last word and establish yourself as an authority.”

Meg McSherry Breslin: For women who feel frustrated and unable to move up in their companies, what are some concrete things they can do?

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She’s Doing It: Dorothy Seymour Mills Finds Her Voice–and Uses It!

Earlier this year, I reviewed baseball historian Dorothy Seymour Mills’ book, First in the Field, a book that offers readers insight into the history behind gender-based affirmative action policies.

Today, Mills returns to 9 Ways to discuss her new book. A work of fiction, Drawing Card is steeped in Mills. trademark historical-fact-made-relevant-today.

According to Amazon reviewer Joan M. Thomas, “Mills’ extensive knowledge of history and ethnic cultures makes the fast paced story all the more real. Moreover, while the events occur during earlier times, inequities that persist today become crystal clear.”

Today’s guest blogger, Dorothy Seymour Mills, is the personification of what it means to embrace Power tool #1, Know Your History.

In researching women’s baseball history, I discovered that at least two female baseball players had been signed to minor-league contracts but didn’t play. That’s because the Commissioner of Baseball, Kenesaw M. Landis, canceled their contracts as soon as he learned that they were women. Landis scoffed at the idea that women could play baseball, just as some baseball men do today.

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