The GEC is celebrating Women's History Month!
Start Smart: Salary Negotiation Workshops
Women working full time in the United States typically are paid just 80 percent of what white men are paid, a gap of 20 percent — and it’s even worse for women of color. Through AAUW Start Smart and AAUW Work Smart, we are fighting to close the pay gap, one workshop at a time. AAUW’s Start Smart programs are designed to empower women with the skills and confidence to successfully negotiate their salary and benefits packages. By learning strategies and practicing effective language, participants gain valuable skills they can use throughout their lives — well beyond their next negotiation.
GEC Presents: AAUW Smart Start Salary Negotiation Workshops
Celebrating Latinx Women
Stop by and grab some stickers celebrating amazing Latinx women
Hosted by: GEC & Latino Programs and Services
Monday, March 8th | 11:00am-1:00pm | Beaird Lounge
International Women’s Day Summit
Hosted by: Gender + Equality Center, Norman, Tulsa, & HSC Diversity & Inclusion Office
March 8th at 11:00am-5:00pm
(Additional details found at https://ou.edu/diversity)
Hair Love: Empowering Womxn of Color in All Their Hair Glory
The GEC is celebrating Black History Month!
Join us and celebrate the life and legacy of the Black figures in American history, specifically Black Abolitionists and the icons of Ball Culture.
Leiomy Maldonado is known as the "Wonder Woman of Vogue." She is a trans Afro-Puerto Rican dancer, instructor, model, activist, and ballroom dancer. She has worked with multiple famous artists and continued to highlight Vogue and Ball Culture through her works in TV or music videos.
Maldonado was MTV’s America's Best Dance Crew’s first-ever transgender competitor. Much has happened professionally since the competition catapulted her into the limelight. Maldonado has been featured in Willow Smith's "Whip My Hair" music video, is a spokesperson for Nike's Equality campaign and is now a renowned choreographer whose work can be seen on the FX show Pose.
Considered the "Grandfather of Vogue," Willi Ninja parlayed his success from late-night Harlem ball competitions into mainstream stardom. A self-taught dancer, Ninja utilized crisp precise lines inspired by various dance styles and martial arts. He founded the House of Ninja, which was considered a rare, multi-ethnic house.
In popular culture, professional models like Naomi Campbell and socialites such as Paris Hilton sought out Ninja's expertise in walking the fashion runway. In 2001, Ninja died at 45 years old as a result of AIDS-related heart failure, having fulfilled his dream of world stardom.
He was first exposed to the ballroom scene in 2003 when the 17-year-old Cox attended an LGBT+ party at The Globe, a now-defunct venue in Newark. In 2004 he began to release music and joined the House of LaBeija.
He then went on to form Qween Beat, a record label focusing on vogue and ballroom tracks, re-edits, and remixes, because he was tired of seeing so much raw, underground talent inspire mainstream culture while at the same time remain overlooked by it. Deciding to pull the true innovators of the ballroom scene out of the shadows and give them a platform, he brought together DJs, vocalists, dancers, and producers to create a record label with the spirit of a ballroom house. His style has been described by The New York Times as "ecstatic ballroom house".
There is a rich history of anti-sexual violence activism that began before the feminist movement of the 1970s. Over the past few decades, an erasure has occurred of the women behind the early anti-violence movement that has previously been dominated in the media by middle-class white women. As we embrace and uplift Black Voices not only during Black History Month but every day, we pay homage to the women who led the earliest waves of activism not only against sexual violence but also racism. This only a small number of the hundreds of Black Women that have fought for equality in a world that continues to disregard their work, life, and history.
Ida B. Wells
Ida B. Wells, an activist and journalist in the 19th and 20th centuries, focused her efforts on the intersections of race, gender, and violence. She investigated the lynching of Black men and the ways in which racial stereotypes against Black men were used by white mobs to justify lynching. Ms. Wells’ journalism was internationally known, and she spoke openly about the white violence that African-Americans across the South fled from. Ms. Wells also stood against suffragists who pushed harmful stereotypes of Black men as rapists and refused to advocate for the right to vote for Black women. Along with other Black activists, she founded the first Black women’s organizations, including the National Association for Colored Women, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), and the Ida B. Wells Club. Ms. Wells mentored some of the most prominent early civil rights activists, including W.E.B. DuBois. The American civil rights movement adopted many of her activism strategies.
“In 1855, an 18-year-old enslaved woman, Celia, killed her owner in an attempt to protect herself after enduring years of sexual abuse. The Missouri courts determined that enslaved people did not hold the right to self-defense against sexual violence, and as a result convicted and executed Celia. This case laid the legal foundation for the unjust treatment of enslaved victims of sexual violence. Though the laws have changed, we continue to feel the after-effects of this harmful litigation today, as Black women statistically are targeted at a higher rate for sexual violence and less likely to be believed when they report the assault. Modern criminal justice responses still echo the belief that Women of Color, and Black women in particular, do not deserve justice.
“In 1944, six men abducted and sexually assaulted Recy Taylor. The men threatened to kill Mrs. Taylor if she spoke out about what they did to her. This did not keep her silent and she reported the assaults to police, successfully identifying one of the perpetrators who then named the others. Despite confessions from the six men accused, no one was arrested. The case came before a grand jury in October of 1944 and none of the men were indicted. Another grand jury was initiated and also failed to indict any of the accused. None of the men who assaulted Mrs. Taylor were prosecuted. During Mrs. Taylor’s fight for justice, Rosa Parks launched the Alabama Committee for Equal Justice for Mrs. Recy Taylor to bring attention to this struggle. Citizens mobilized to demand justice, with many pointing out that while the United States defended the globe from rising fascism, it was failing to protect its own citizens. Mrs. Taylor and her family faced ongoing threats, including a firebomb attack on their home, as she pursued justice. Despite the constant threats and terror, Mrs. Taylor spoke truth to power and gave voice to a crime that went, and still goes, without justice for Black women all across America.”