Why Join the When Women Lead Conversation


Dr. Christina Kishimoto
Dr. Christina Kishimoto

In June 2023, Voice4Equity will be hosting our annual education leadership summit for women, aptly named, When Women Lead. We will convene on the beautiful waterfront of Vancouver, Washington.  The summit, the first of its kind, will bring together executive education leaders from school districts and state agencies across our nation to boldly discuss, jointly problem-solve and collaboratively design equity approaches that are respectful of the diverse needs, cultures and interests of our nation’s students.

When Women Lead is an interactive, empowering summit, not a sit-and-get conference. Attendees will engage with leading women executives at the state and district superintendent, cabinet,  and school leader levels, along with several corporate and higher education leaders, who are committed to equity and inclusion at the policy table and are supporting other women as they rise to executive leadership. We are hosting this women-focused summit to provide a highly relevant, highly interactive, learning and network building opportunity for current chiefs and aspirants. We are taking back the false narrative that women need more preparation than men and replacing it with reaffirmation that women are ready to lead, and have supportive champions around them. Let’s get you,  the future leaders, into the influencer seats! With 86% of the pipeline primed with women teachers, and only 27% of school superintendent seats filled by women, it is time to take down the gender barriers to executive leadership. Why should this matter to all of us, men and women? Because when half of our nation’s potential leaders  are kept from leadership, we essentially disempower the voices of half of our population. Our children need our generation to step up and take action to address long-standing inequities that disempower and disrupt their own future pathways. This work is important!

When women take part in learning opportunities and events for leaders, we are typically outnumbered by men two or three to one. The When Women Lead summit provides a welcoming and inclusive place for women leaders to engage in an environment where we can express our authentic selves and share our stories in a supportive space.

This convening is timely and of great importance. Across many sectors, women still do not have equitable access to chief executive leadership roles nor influential boards. Think about this point in time in our nation’s history, as we go into this significant midterm elections, with only 27% of congressional seats held by women and still a dozen states who have still never elected a woman governor. This often leads to more male-leaning perspectives in decision-making that can create unintended biases in policies, services and opportunities that impact our school children, their families and communities, as well as our very own employees.

When Women Lead is a two and half day conversation that will lead to stronger networks, connections and an empowering sense of belonging because of the community that we offer. We have an outstanding line up of speakers who will facilitate dialogues with you about voice and leadership within an equity construct. We will be grounded in a culturally responsive ecosystem for the equity policy work and the digital equity solutions that we are called to lead. As a participant, you will be both coach and learner, because together we will lift each other to serve as the leaders that our current generation of children and youth need us to be.