Woman of the Year awardee has a message to women and men

"By building women up and elevating their voices, we can change the direction of our country. " Heather Colburn

She was Sen. Tammy Baldwin’s finance director at 21, she spends her time advocating for women’s rights, and pushes for women to be able to run for office. Heather Colburn, the winner of the Woman of the Year award from Emerge Wisconsin, has a message for all women and men.

From The Cap Times, Heather wrote:

By building women up and elevating their voices, we can change the direction of our country. Women must learn to speak up and speak out — and others around them must learn not to call them aggressive or pushy or bitchy when they do.

Women must learn that power is multiplied only when it is shared. Women climbing the ladder are so busy holding on to the ladder that they can forget to reach a hand down. Women, reach your hand down on every occasion that presents itself. It is why we have two hands: one for holding on to the rung and one for reaching down for another.

I’m asking that everyone, men and women, join me in making the world a better place for girls and women who aspire to work to make the world a better place.

When you see a girl being bold and brave, tell her so. Help young girls use their voices and don’t point out to them that it’s unusual. Praise them for being themselves and being authentic and don’t worry if they fit into boxes that are easy for us to manage and understand.

Women, when a young woman sends you, as a more experienced woman, her resume when she’s job hunting, don’t just send it on — fix it up. She needs your expertise to toot her own horn and compete with men for her next job. Only your experience can get her in that room.

I believe that to be an empowered woman one needs to empower women. Remember that politics is about connections, so be lose and fast with those. Send emails and make calls and open more doors for women. Don’t just open the door — hold it open.

Read more here.

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