“I got fired from my own company when I filed for divorce. Although I was the one who put in the capitol, I didn't realize my name wasn’t on the business. Part of it was that I was asleep at the wheel. I think a man wouldn’t have allowed that to happen. They would have made sure their name was on the papers.” - Cam Kashani is the Co-Founder and CEO of COACCEL, the human accelerator.
"When I was a young girl I was encouraged to be a performer, to be an actress and singer. My grandmother would take me around as a cute little girl to sing at different community places. That enabled me to be a storyteller, to be able to walk into a room and be comfortable. I was one of the first women in tech in Philly and that has given me good access and opportunity because people were looking for diversity. I don't see being a woman as a challenge I see it as a benefit." - Danielle Cohn is the Director of Entrepreneurial Engagement at Comcast and leads the Lift Lab for entrepreneurs.
"Listening to the stories that women shared with me inspired me to write my book, "Brotopia: Breaking up the Boys' Club of Silicon Valley". If I weren't a woman I wouldn't have had the understanding about their experience in Silicon Valley. I hope my contribution starts a conversation that makes the world a better place for all of us." - Emily Chang is a journalist/author and the host of Bloomberg Technology.
"The customers like coming to the women artists. They think we have more patience listening to them and with the design process. I don't really think we are more patient. I'm not more patient, but people perceive us to be." - Sonya Zhang is a tattoo artist in the East Village and she is originally from China.
"In 1974 I wasn't allowed to be in or even try out for Little League. There were four of us girls who fought to change the rule and we won. It became a big deal. The headline in the newspaper read, "Girls make History/Herstory". All four us tried out and made the league. They put each of us on different teams though. Our teammates were very respectful, they knew we were good players. The boys from the other teams who didn't have girls on their team made fun of us." - Margie Alley
"When I got married I had a party for the family in New Orleans. At the party, my grandfather Deville said, "Well there goes the acting career." He was right because I gave up so many opportunities. My husband was not supportive of my acting career, he wanted me to be his secretary and have babies. I stayed married for 12 years and left when I was 30. If I were a man I wouldn't of had to ask anyone's permission or question any of those opportunities." - Bambi DeVille owns a vintage clothing shop in New Orleans.
"I come from a background of women who didn't know their worth or see themselves as goddesses or know that they were goddesses. They didn't even have standards set for men to even meet. It's been interesting stepping into my own. There's no self-sacrificing that I am going to do. Too many women don't know how to keep to their standards or how to live their standards. I am the table, you bring the gift. I am the Queen, not you. In ancient stories the woman came first." - Mina McCree is a musician/writer who lives in New Orleans.
"The power of grace, women, we just have it. This grace, it's a gift. I love being a woman and I would never choose otherwise. To me, grace means being educated, fancy, sexy and terrific inside and out. And having a loving and inviting spirit inside and out." - Shawn-Michelle Rudism is the owner of the vintage clothing shop, Fraulein's World in New Orleans.
"I told myself if I didn't have a baby by the time I was 25, I wasn't gonna have one. I wanted to have a baby, raise her and still be able to be young and live my life. I raised my baby. I'm still young, I move around and I enjoy life." - Dianthe Johnson works in the construction field and is also a Lyft driver in New Orleans.
"When I was a teenager and studying to become a teacher I got pregnant and dropped out of school. At the time I thought my work and the rest of my life would be in the house and in the kitchen. But after participating in some community women's groups and raising three children with my husband, I decided to become a health promoter so I could earn my own money and go back to school. I earned Q300 which was enough to pay for my school materials and my uniform. I only had one uniform for all three years I was in school. I had to borrow money from my family so that I could buy the clothing I needed for my graduation. But I kept pushing myself toward my goals. It was hard but I just kept going. While raising 5 children, I became a teacher and now I am the Director of the School." - Dominga Lukas Castro is an educator and business owner in Huitan, Guatemala. She also gives literacy classes to her mother-in-law (yesterday's EVE) and older women in her community.
note: This project is dedicated to Dominga and you can read a longer version of her story on meandeve.com. It is the very first story published.
"As a child I only attended school for two years. Back then the thought was, "Why send a girl to school when she only is going to wind up in the kitchen?" When I was 25 years old the Catholic Nuns came to my village and taught me the value of being a woman. The priest told us that men and women are equal. He said the only ones who say women aren't equal to men are men. The priest built the Colegio Asuncion here in Huitan so that the indigenous people here (the Mams) would be educated. All of my 10 children attended that school and 9 of them went on to become teachers. Now, I go to school every afternoon. My daughter-in-law, who is the director of the elementary school here, teaches a class for older women like me who didn't have the opportunity to go to school when we were young." - Dona Juana Diaz Velasquez lives in El Plan, Huitan, Guatemala and has been a community leader for many decades.
Donna Hylton lives in Brooklyn; she was one of the speakers at the D.C. march rally. “Once, I wasn’t able to speak up for myself but now I can. I am the voice for all women who don’t have a voice or are not allowed a voice. Next week it will be 5 years since I was released from prison. And I am going to Washington to remind people that the women in prison are just like every other woman, mother, daughter, sister. But over 90% of women who are incarcerated are also victims of sexual violence. We have to talk about women and violence. Our very humanity is on the line.”
Cybele Tamulonis (Mother) - will be marching in NYC: "My earliest childhood memory is being pushed by my mother in a stroller through Central Park with the Bread and Puppet theater while we protested the Vietnam War. I can't believe it's 2017 and women's rights and education are being targeted. Really anything that pertains to equality will be targeted. We live in Blairstown, NJ, and this is a very conservative community. I am marching so that we can join other women and have our voices heard. I am going to ensure that Evie has full control over the rights of her body." Evie B. age 13 (Daughter) - will be marching in NYC: "I am marching because Trump is only supporting white working males. I think he will make more hate in the world and is trying to kick people out of the country because they are different. He is possibly taking away hate crime legislation. I live in a town surrounded by very conservative Christian people. It's very stressful trying to figure out who I am in this place. I don't feel safe to explore who I really am and who I want to be."
"Thirty years ago I attended the Pro-Choice march in Washington. The moment I heard about this march I signed up and organized a bus to D.C. I am going again to support a woman's right to choose but also because of the Affordable Care Act. My son has type 1 diabetes. He has a "pre-existing" condition. I want to hold this new president accountable and I want to scream and shout with my gay, straight and multi-racial friends and let him know we will not be silenced." - Elizabeth Beskin (Mother) is a business owner and she will be participating in the Women's March on Washington in D.C. "I am a 24 year old type 1 diabetic. I am in public health Master's program at Columbia University and I am living at home. My current job does not give me health benefits. The Affordable Care Act allows me to have health coverage and continue to work towards my Masters degree in healthcare policy analysis. My goal is to help design healthcare policies. I am going to the march because it is the right thing to do." - Corey Greenblatt (Son) is studying to earn a Masters in Public Health from Columbia University and will be marching in D.C. on Saturday.