ISU Headlines

Idaho State University’s Pemberton participates in Vision 2020 efforts to advance women’s leadership

Posted November 9, 2010

Idaho State University's Cynthia Pemberton, associate dean of the ISU Graduate School, was among the 116 women leaders from all 50 states who attended the Vision 2020 national convention in Philadelphia this fall to begin a decade-long initiative to advance women's equality and leadership.

 "What an incredible experience to meet and network with such a talented group of women leaders," Pemberton said. "I was and am, honored, excited and eager to join them in helping to realize the vision embodied in the Declaration of Equality."

Cynthia PembertonFollowing three days of discussions and debate in Philadelphia, the Vision 2020 delegates generated hundreds of ideas to advance women's leadership and achieve equality by the year 2020.

"Vision 2020 and its delegates are now off and running united by one goal," said Lynn Yeakel, co-chair of Vision 2020, a national initiative of the Institute for Women’s Health and Leadership at Drexel University College of Medicine.

Equality is a measure of our democracy. Yet women, who make up 51 percent of the population, represent only 18 percent of top leaders in the United States, according to Vision 2020 organizers. The Vision 2020 national delegates from all 50 states are committed to giving more women a voice in government, media, education, and business. 

Following the model of the Continental Congress, these delegates gathered in Philadelphia in late October. There, just two blocks from where 56 men signed the Declaration of Independence 234 years ago, these 116 women signed the Declaration of Equality. They pledged to return to their home states and work to realize the goal of greater women’s leadership. Kathleen Hall Jamieson, director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania, presided over the signing at the National Constitution Center.

The women leaders from across the United States will be creating action projects and breaking down barriers to leadership in their home states. They will gather again in 2011 to share ideas and successes in their advocacy.

"Like any movement, Vision 2020 will not be neat and it won’t be tidy," Vision 2020 co-chair Rosemarie B. Greco said when addressing the delegates. "But it will change the way women see themselves and the way the world sees them."

The National and Visionary Delegates will serve for the next three years. There are two National Delegates from each of the 50 states, plus Washington, D.C. Visionary Delegates are women with national influence. For more information, visit www.drexel.edu/vision2020.

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About Vision 2020
Vision 2020 is a national project of the Institute for Women's Health and Leadership at Drexel University College of Medicine focused on ensuring equality by energizing the dialogue about women and leadership. Lynn H. Yeakel is Director of the Institute and Co-Chair of Vision 2020. In 2010, Vision 2020 will develop and launch its decade-long action agenda to move America toward equality by inspiring and engaging new generations of women and men to finish the work of the suffragists who pursued women's right to vote as fundamental to social and economic justice. The centennial of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution will be celebrated in 2020.

About Vision 2020’s Sponsors
The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company is the Presenting Sponsor of Vision 2020. The Exelon Foundation is a Forger of the Future and Wachovia, a Wells Fargo Company, Siemens, The Philadelphia Foundation, Phoebe W. Haas Charitable Trust, Bloomberg LP, Ernst & Young and Keystone Mercy Health Plan are also sponsors.

About The National Constitution Center
The National Constitution Center, located at 525 Arch St. on Philadelphia's Independence Mall, is an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing public understanding of the U.S. Constitution and the ideas and values it represents. The Center serves as a museum, an education center, and a forum for debate on constitutional issues.