"Since my father's passing I've noticed that I have so much of his strength. On March 9th, 1975 my father, Francis Dada, first stepped on U.S. soil. He was fearless and selfless and determined to make another life for himself when he left Nigeria. He came here and was a janitor at McDonald's and became a microbiologist and raised 6 kids. I feel like he was my celebrity. Everything he has ever said to me, I hear so loudly still. He said I was a pioneer in technology and he wanted me to reach my fullest potential. He was my biggest champion." - Jumoke Dada is a tech consultant and strategist for women at Dadaverse.org.
"My parents raised me to believe I could do anything and gender was never a part of it. When I was 18 years I went to Florida to pick up a car from my father and drive it back to Texas. He gave me his car and he also gave me his gun. He said, "You never point this gun at someone unless you plan on killing them." That was the first time he showed to me that he is scared to have a girl in the world and it was when I realized I may not be as powerful and untouchable as I thought I was or as they raised me to be." - Deborah Cannon is a photojournalist and lives in Austin, Texas.
"It's ok for me to feel the way I feel. And just because men, like my father, often don't understand my more emotional side doesn't mean I am wrong to feel it. I will just carry on with the way I am." - Amabel was working at a crafts fair in Santa Fe, New Mexico when I met her.
"My Dad told us we could do anything we wanted to do. My sister and I were too young to know that at that time, it wasn't really true. He raised us to think more like boys, to be independent, adventurous, and he believed in us. My sister and I took a cargo ship to Argentina when we were young, we traveled across the country alone. My Mother was aware of the danger of two girls traveling alone - and she worried about us, but my father believed we could do anything." - Jacquie McArdle is a fashion designer.
"My father was one of six boys. His mother kept having children because she wanted to have a girl, but she never did. Instead she dressed my father like a girl until he was 5 or 6 years old. Not sure if this is why he was so gentle. My mother was the more hand's on, no nonsense parent - she worked hard and I don't think she ever had a manicure in her life. I was less receptive to the idea of sexism and it wasn't until recently when a female friend, who is a welder, was telling me about how her boss was always trying to get her to smile or laugh at his stupid jokes to gain her approval. She just wanted to get her work done and didn't think it was her job to make the boss feel good or laugh at his jokes. I had a boss once who used to pass by my desk and tell us to smile - it was annoying." - April Greene is a writes about workplace strategy for PlastArc.