Women and Leadership Alliance

Women and Leadership

Our Mission

The Women and Leadership Alliance is a joint endeavor to support and promote student programs at the Claremont Colleges that will highlight issues faced by women in leadership in business, government and the professions.

How We Began

In 2010, students at CMC approached Sarah Smith Orr (then Executive Director of the Kravis Leadership Institute at CMC) about the need and desire for female leadership mentors on campus. Support quickly came together for the first Women & Leadership Workshop, designed to support all 7-C students during their time of preparation for post-graduation opportunities and employment, as well as connecting students with successful women leaders representing fields such as law, non-profit, entrepreneurship, finance, consulting, entertainment, education, government service, marketing, and health services. We decided to capitalize on the momentum generated by the workshop’s success, and thus, the Women & Leadership Alliance was born.

Who We Are

Currently, our programs are organized and led by representatives from the Kravis Leadership Institute, Berger Institute for Individual and Social Development, and the Mgrublian Center for Human Rights at Claremont McKenna College, however we welcome and encourage involvement from all of the educational institutions in Claremont and our annual programs are available to students, faculty and staff across the 7Cs.


February 23, 2024 (12:00-2:00pm):  15th Annual Women and Leadership Workshop:  Women's Leadership, Equal Citizenship, and Reproductive Justice, featuring CMC alumna and keynote speaker, Elizabeth Wydra '98.  Ms. Wydra will discuss how reproductive autonomy is essential to equal citizenship, and how the Supreme Court’s reversal of Roe v. Wade got the Constitution wrong. She will also talk about her experiences as a woman leader of a constitutional law organization during these legal battles.  Lunch is provided, this event will be hosted in McKenna Auditorium at CMC. 

Past Events

October 3, 2023 (5:30-8:00pm): The Feminist Fight Forward: Lessons from 50 Years of Ms. Magazine. Engage in conversation with members of Ms.’s executive and advisory board team: Jennifer Weiss-Wolf, Carmen Rios, and Linda Perkins. Moderated by CMC History Professor Diana Selig, the panel will explore what the future of feminism and movement journalism demands and the use of storytelling to promote advocacy and activism.  CMC Athenaeum.

February 10, 2023 (12:30-3:00pm): Redefining Professionalism Through an Intersectional Lens -- featuring speakers Marissiko Wheaton-Greer and Vince Greer, of Greer Consultants.  Participants will work towards developing a shared understanding around common challenges and barriers experienced by women and other historically marginalized identities/communities in the workplace.  McKenna Auditorium, CMC.

April 2, 2022 (12pm-2pm): COVID-19 and the Great Reset: Effects on Work and Life -- Panel discussion, Bauer Center, Founders Room.   Join the Women and Leadership Alliance for a panel discussion and networking luncheon on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic in the workplace and beyond. Open to all students, faculty, and alumni.  

March 1, 2022 (3:30pm): Student reception with Stacey Vanek Smith, NPR commentator and author of Machiavelli for Women: Defend Your Worth, Grow Your Ambition, and Win the Workplace(5:30-8:00pm):  Dinner and Presentation, CMC Athenaeum.  

March 24, 2021 (2:00pm)CMC Conversations: Women and Leadership.  Director of Internships and Research at KLI and Visiting Professor Sherylle Tan and Emma David’21 will discuss the importance of women in leadership, the challenges they face, and talk about the origins of the Women and Leadership Workshop.  View recorded event here.

March 23, 2021 (4:00-6:00pm): 2021 Women and Leadership Workshop (Virtual event)
4:00pm Student Reception
5:00pm Representation and Responsible Leadership: A Conversation with Candace Valenzuela ’06 (CMC Virtual Athenaeum Event)

February 7, 2020 (1:00-4:00pm), McKenna Auditorium:  Women and Leadership Workshop 20/20: Envision Your Future.  The 11th Annual Workshop will feature keynote speaker, Dr. Cindy Pace.  Dr. Pace is a global talent and diversity expert on multicultural identities, purpose and inclusiveness in organizational leadership.   In her talk, she will discuss the importance of purpose, meaning, and building connections.  Following her presentation, there will be a related activity, as well as networking opportunities with CMC alumnae.  The workshop is open to students from all 5 Claremont Colleges.  The Workshop is co-sponsored by the Berger Institute, Kravis Leadership Institute, Mgrublian Center for Human Rights, and the Susan and Thomas Handley ’77 family.​  

September 26, 2019 (4:30-5:30pm):  Women and Leadership Alliance Open House, Honnold Library Conference Room (2nd floor of the Library).  Light refreshments will be served.

Friday, February 22, 2019 - 10th Annual Women and Leadership Workshop, 2pm - 4:30pm, McKenna Auditorium.  The workshop featured keynote speaker Pamela B. Gann, J.D., President Emerita of Claremont McKenna College, Trustee Professor of Legal Studies and George R. Roberts Fellow, and Senior Fellow at the Kravis Leadership Institute.  As well, there was a closing panel with CMC alumnae San San Lee ’85, Harmony Palmer ‘13, and Charlie Stoddard Fitzpatrick ’94. The workshop was sponsored by the Susan and Thomas Handley ’77, the Berger Institute, the Kravis Leadership Institute, and the Mgrublian Center for Human Rights at Claremont McKenna College.

Thursday, March 1, 2018 - B. Cole, Masculine of Center: "They" and the Emotional Weight of Words, 11:45am (lunch), CMC Athenaeum.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018 - Dishonour, film screening and class discussion, Bauer South Forum, CMC.

Monday, February 26, 2018 - Act and Punishment, documentary film screening about Pussy Riot.  7pm, Humanities Auditorium, Scripps College.

Friday, February 23, 2018 - 9th Annual Women & Leadership Workshop, 11:45am - 4:30pm.

Monday, February 19, 2018 -  Ellen Barry, Intersectional Justice:  Women Prisoners and Mass Incarceration. 4:15-5:30pm, Hampton Room, Malott Commons, Scripps College.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018 - Miry Whitehill, Survive to Thrive: Welcoming our Newest Neighbors and the Story of Miry's List, 11:45am (lunch), CMC Athenaeum.  

Tuesday, January 30, 2018 - Jo Scott-Coe, First Responders: Women as Witnesses to Mass Violence, 6:45pmCMC Athenaeum.

Saturday, November 4, 2017 - Flirting with Fascism? TRUMP and THE CHALLENGE TO DEMOCRACY. 8:00am - 3:00pm, Rose Hills Theatre at Pomona.

Friday, November 3, 2017 - Claremont students are invited to attend the UCR conference, Women’s Political Engagement: Persist 2017. Speakers include California Senator Connie Leyva and Assembly members Eloise Gomez Reyes and Sabrina Cervantes.  There will be multiple panels and workshops on women’s political leadership, including workshops with IGNITE. IFC will pay for lunch and is organizing transportation.  Workshop is from 10am - 5:30pm. Website:  http://go.ucr.edu/persist/.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017 - Gayle Greene (Emerita Professor of English, Scripps) reading/discussion on her new memoir, Missing Persons. 4:15 - 5:30 p.m., Founders Room, Honnold Mudd Library.

Thursday, October 28, 2017 - Scripps in Residence, Hannah-Beth Jackson ’71, California State Senator and Poppy MacDonald ’97, President, POLITICO USA, Conversation and Refreshments from 4-5pm in the Hampton Living Room.

Thursday, October 26, 2017 - Scripps Presents: Nasty Women Series, Hampton Room. The series concludes with a noon-time ConverAction on female identity, feminism, and politics. (For more info, contact: clesser@scrippscollege.edu).