By Beth Morrison, HAVEN CEO
For me, the month of March brings a feeling a hope, kind of a light at the end of the tunnel feeling. I am not a fan of winter, so March is the means to an end, bringing with it the anticipation of April and spring. March also has a few of my favorite days – March 4th or March Forth as I always recognize it, March 8th International Women’s Day and then of course the entire month is Women’s History Month.
I started March off in a wonderful, energizing way – Anne Doyle’s launch of her new book, Powering Up! How America’s Women Achievers Become Leaders. Anne, a loyal supporter of HAVEN, gave a passionate overview of her book to well over 500+ women (and a few dozen men) on March 3rd, daring all of us in the room to step up to the plate and lead. (www.poweringupwomen.com)
With Anne’s words rattling around in my head and my highlighter madly marking up the first couple chapters of her book, I now find myself watching the sunrise on March Forth. For those unfamiliar with my affinity to this special day, March Forth has been transformed for me and many others, as a day to march forth, a day to be engaged, to stretch, to make a difference, to dare. In my 25+ years of recognizing March Forth, I have literally marched against nuclear weapons, called every one of my elected officials from school board members to Congressional members, made a few life altering personal decisions, and even marched around a room, banging drums with a group of preschoolers declaring that we would not say mean things to others.
On the days leading up to March Forth 2011, I struggled with what I should do and kept hitting a wall of nothing. Anne’s voice kept coming back to me –daring me to lead. Then it finally came to me. Another story that Anne shared with me a long time ago, so I quickly fast forwarded through her book skimming, just knowing I would find it and there is was on page 237! Anne shares a powerful story about passing on a pin to another incredible woman, Blanca Fauble, at a public gathering of women elected officials. When Anne asked the group’s leader, Judge Joan Young, if she could present the pin to Blanca, Judge Young urged Anne and the other women in the room to “find ways to pass her power forward.”
So on this March Forth, I shall work on a plan to pass forward my power, a plan to be a mentor and to pass on any wisdom or helpful pieces of my experience on to other women starting out on their own leadership journey. I also pledge for my own growth to connect with a few other more “seasoned” women and invite them to share their wisdom of with me. Women helping women – simple yet powerful. So like Anne, I dare you – what are you going to do today, this week, this month – especially this month – to assist another woman?