Inspired by Generations of Women CEOs
The Future is looking like “Powerful Women”
By Beth Hoad
Legendary fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg, simply says, “I did not know what I wanted to do, but I knew the kind of woman I wanted to be. I wanted to be a woman who’s in charge of her life, who’s independent and, you know, who was driving her life — designing her life.”
And to be a woman is a privilege, but to know their story is an honor. The women listed below encompass diversity, change and strength; and their stories are told to evoke change worldwide.
Roya Mahboob: Founder, CEO Afghan Citadel Software Company, President Digital Citizen Fund
In countries where males dominate the workforce and culture is deeply conservative, Roya Mahboob is a standout star. Roya has received threats for running a business, for hiring women and for driving a car. Her idea is to find opportunities for women and encourage them to pursue careers, attend school and escape a world of domestic abuse, forced marriages and strict rules. As an Afghan woman in a position of power, Roya fights justice and inequality every day to create a new norm for women.
Altheas Simons: Founder GRAMMER
In 2016, Altheas’ apartment building burned down, and she lost all her belongings. The difficulty she felt trying to replace her wardrobe, made her notice that the perfect garments for her life did not yet exist, showing that sometimes in the most difficult of times, creativity can prosper.
Arlan Hamilton: CEO Backstage Capital
From being homeless, to establishing her own company, Arlan helps the community by investing in founders who identify as women, people of color, or LGBTQ+, in the U.S. In an interview with Camila McConaughey, Arlan says “I’d like to teach Women of Today that they should treat themselves well. They should understand that they are valuable just by their existence. They are someone’s hero even if they don’t know it, they are someone’s role model even if they don’t know it, and people need them. Someone needs them right now. So being their authentic true self is very important, because someone out there is looking for them.”
Kimberly McGlonn: CEO & Founder of Grant Blvd
Shopping at Grant BLVD encompasses more than fashion, it educates people on sustainable clothing, unites communities and enforces radical change. As Kimberly puts it, “Grant Blvd is the story of two types of American families: those who know stability, security & hope- which, until I was 13, was us. But it’s also the story of families that collapse- families that face adulthood depression, self-medication with cocaine, and then weighing “criminal options” as a means of surviving. Grant Blvd is the place where I learned the power of acting with love and of speaking out against inequity. It’s the place that I think best defines who I am.”
Someone’s journey can walk us through history, but their personal story can foster connection. In a world where many women must give up work to be mothers, face inequality in the workplace and gender bias throughout life, it’s crucial we listen to and acknowledge their stories. When we as a society work together, we can accomplish much more for future generations.
We all have a story and it’s waiting to be told.