The following is the opening remarks given by Gizelle Covarrubias Robinson (Global FWN100™ 2017), Senior Managing DirectorDigital Accelerator Retirement ExperienceClient Experience Technologyat Charles Schwab & Co, Inc., at FWN’s 2019 International Women’s Day event— DISRUPTing SAN FRANCISCO—held on Friday, March 8 in San Francisco.
Good evening everyone my name is Gizelle Covarrubias Robinson, I am an FWN member.
I am truly excited to be here and to share with all of you how FWN, especially the FWN DISRUPT Book series is contributing to the movement to build a gender-balanced world.
A number of the women whom I love and admire for their strength and grace shared their stories in this book series. You will hear excerpts of some of their stories this evening. You will hear about their challenges, struggles and their strength You will hear about how they handled obstacles that were very difficult, but also strengthened their resolve and purpose. It’s inspiring to me how they used their ingenuity, spirit and intelligence in a thousand different ways, in a thousand different days. These Filipina disrupters are my super sheroes.
The FWN DISRUPT book series fills the gap in the leadership literature that has missed the opportunity to survey the leadership competencies of the women of Philippine ancestry. This series documents the leadership stories about victories over poverty, domestic violence, incarceration, discrimination and harassment which shaped these Filipina women’s world view, leader identity, life purpose, power and influence.
It is key to FWN’s strategy in building its pipeline of qualified leaders that will rise to the leadership position in all sectors of the economy. The authors and contributors are recipients of the Filipina Women's Network's 100 Most Influential Filipina Women in the World™ award.
I wrote a tribute to my mom, my personal superhero, in the second volume of this series. It wasn’t easy to write. Writing made me miss my mom because of all the memories it brought back. When I finally completed writing my chapter, I did feel good about being able to share my mom’s life and how her leadership style influenced who I am today. I aspire to emulate her all the days of my life. I try to be about others just as she was. It’s not easy. However, I think, as long as I remain a student of life and of my profession I will get better at it.
All these Filipina Disrupter stories are there to help inspire and motivate us to do what we can to achieve our goal, which should include gender balance. A true sustainable world is only possible with equality for all.
Let me end with a quote by Susan B. Anthony, who was a pioneer crusader for the woman suffrage movement.
“The day will come when men will recognize woman as his peer, not only at the fireside, but in councils of the nation. Then, and not until then, will there be the perfect comradeship, the ideal union between the sexes that shall result in the highest development of the race.”
We Filipinas all have a part to play – all the time, everywhere. We believe balance drives a better working world. Currently, it is absent and so together lets disrupt to achieve balance.
Our hope is that you all are inspired by the excerpts you hear this evening from these Filipina disrupters.