The GenderAvenger Toolkit: You Can Make Sure Women's Voices Count Wherever There Is Public Dialog

I joined GenderAvenger in late 2013 when Gina Glantz and Susan Askew approached me to design their brand new organization’s website. As a long-time feminist, I was deeply drawn to their goal to ensure women’s voices are represented in the public dialog, and I felt honored to be a part of their mission. Since then, we have grown and changed with our incredible community; women and men of all ages, races, and ethnicities from all over the world have come together to join their own voices with ours to influence not only public awareness but also the decision-makers behind conferences, lists, and tv panels to understand the value and power of women’s voices. went live in February 2014, and it’s not hyperbole when I say “we’ve come a long way, baby.” Over the last four years, we’ve called out conferences and their organizers, called in those inspired to do the work, and raised the bar for including women on stages, in magazines and newspapers, and on television news shows. A large part of what has enabled this work is our GenderAvenger Toolkit. Our community has been the inspiration behind its growth, which is now made up of four robust tools: the GA Tally app, weekly Action Alerts, the GA Pledge, and the Stamp of Approval.

The GA Tally App

The GA Tally app, born in early 2015, was our first ambitious tool. The core of our mission at GenderAvenger has always been the power of one simple gesture: the count. The GA Tally was designed and developed by our GenderAvenger team when we saw that our community of Avengers needed to be able to count the gender imbalances they were seeing in a way that was not only more visually impactful but also more shareable. Now, using the tally, Avengers shout about balances or imbalances as loudly as they can!

The Weekly Action Alert

Every Wednesday, we deliver shareable Action Alerts to thousands of inboxes. They are intended to inspire you to challenge bad and celebrate good gender balance at conferences, on lists, and wherever women's voices should be represented in the public dialog. 

Subscribe by email, and you can add your voice to help create space for women at the table.

The GA Pledge

Signers of the GA Pledge declare: “I will not serve as a panelist at a public conference when there are no women on the panel”. This has become a powerful public statement that says that, with the solid backing of hundreds of your fellow Pledge-signers, you demand women’s voices be present wherever you speak. It lets your colleagues know that you value the voices of women and what they can and do bring to public discourse. It’s a statement that has the potential to shift conference culture from one that tends to value the voices of men over women to one that values inclusive dialog and the wealth of knowledge and innovation it can bring.

The GA Stamp of Approval

The GenderAvenger Stamp of Approval acknowledges and celebrates conference and event organizers that demonstrate a commitment to inclusion on stage. It is awarded to public events that meet one of the following criteria:

  • Gold Stamp of Approval: 40%+ women speakers, of whom 50% are women of color

  • Silver Stamp of Approval: 40%+ women speakers, of whom 40% are women of color

  • Bronze Stamp of Approval: 40%+ women speakers, of whom 30% are women of color

Celebrating conferences and other events that value women’s voices, including those of women of color, builds them up as examples for other event organizers who might otherwise try using one of the many tired excuses we hear, and it encourages organizers to keep up the good work at future events. We see when they get it right, and we think everyone else should see it, too.

Women as equals will become the norm when it is the norm — everywhere.

As we are always fond of saying, women as equals will become the norm when it is the norm — everywhere. We say this, because we wholeheartedly believe it. We have built the tools to help make it happen: we count who’s talking with the GA Tally, challenge imbalances through community Action Alerts, encourage a vital cultural shift with the GA Pledge, and celebrate conferences and events that are getting it right with our Stamp of Approval.

We have raised the bar for women’s inclusion, and, with our GenderAvenger Toolkit, our ever-growing community of Avengers across the United States and around the world has the power make sure women’s voices count wherever there is public dialog. Together our voices are louder, stronger, and can make change happen, so spread the word about the GenderAvenger Toolkit: share this post, use the tools, and make women’s inclusion the public norm.

The @GenderAvenger toolkit can help you count who’s talking, challenge gender imbalances, encourage vital cultural shifts and celebrate getting it right. Come and get it! #genderavenger