I’ve been thinking a lot lately about my career–what I want to do with my life–particularly as a minority woman aspiring to “make it” in the corporate world. Everyday, as part of my role at Axiom, I research top executives, and it’s pretty damn disheartening to see that 99% of the time it’s white male, after white male, after white male, after white male….
What the hell happened to the rest of us? We’re bright, too… and driven, and educated. Where did we fizzle out? I’ve read the bios of countless general counsels, yet where did all the law school-educated Asians I hear about go? Did we really all bump our heads on the proverbial glass ceiling? I just can’t think that we weren’t driven enough. Perhaps we didn’t know how to “work the system” (or that we were supposed to), how to forge the right connections, how to ask the right people the right questions to get to the top?
That’s why when I do meet the power woman who made it to the top, I watch her closely. The female CFO leading a male-dominated finance team. The female GC who knows her stuff and has no time for bullshit. I’m drawn to how she speaks, how she carries herself, how she commands the attention of an audience. She’s a rare species.
And that’s why, when I read today that Obama chose Sonia Sotomayor as the ninth Supreme Court judge, I felt really inspired… and relieved. We need more role models like her. I need more role models like her. Thanks, Obama, for choosing a minority woman who has fought through her life’s many setbacks, and succeeded in this male-dominated, white-dominated world.