International Women’s Day, March 8th, kicks off a global celebration of social, cultural, economic, and political achievements of women during the month of March, Women’s History Month. This day and month also provide a platform to reinforce the importance of gender equality and to accelerate gender parity. While the path to gender equality has been long and challenging, we have recently seen important traction with gender parity movements around the world which have elevated global consciousness surrounding the challenges women encounter on a daily basis and throughout their lives.
It is no secret that historically, power has been distributed among the sexes disparately. Yet there is no force more powerful than a woman determined to rise. For Women’s History Month, I would like to celebrate the woman who I admire most, my mom, Zaida Padron. My mom is my role model because at a young age she left Cuba, the country of her birth, and all that she knew in search for freedom and a better life in the United States. It is through her sacrifice that I was born in a land of opportunity and given the ability through education to strive for a better life than she had. I often wonder whether I would have the courage to do what she did if faced with the same obstacles. My mother taught me to work hard and always strive to be the best version of me. She taught me by example and modeling work ethic and tenacity. Although my Mom is not recognized by all as a famous woman in history, as a courageous woman determined to rise, she is and will always be my hero. I celebrate her accomplishments this and every Woman’s History Month.
We are entering a very exciting time in history, where the world expects equality, diversity, and inclusion. With Kamala Harris inaugurated as our nation’s first female Vice President, we are on a good track for 2021. Now more than ever, it is important to have women in positions of leadership, in the C-suite and in the boardroom. We must develop female mentors and role models, creating an environment of collaboration in order to break barriers, and openly source innovation. Many of my colleagues have persevered through hard work and unremitting determination despite obstacles along the way. There is no limit to what we, as women, can accomplish. Happy International Women’s Day to all the incredible women! Continue to inspire those around you and Shine On!