What a Difference a Day Makes: GenderAvenger Takes On Peter G. Peterson Foundation’s Fiscal Summit

16% women speakers.
An all male lineup of special guests.
90% male speakers in their website videos.

When our followers sent us the website for the Peter G. Peterson Foundation’s annual Fiscal Summit, we knew we had to speak out. So we activated the GA Tally and tweeted out our findings to @pgpfoundation, letting them know that these numbers were really disappointing.


Unbelievable, @pgpfoundation. #FiscalSummit features all male special guests & 16% women speakers: http://t.co/Ocj1LSd43L #genderavenger

— GenderAvenger (@GenderAvenger) May 13, 2015

We weren’t the only ones who noticed — attendees on Twitter reached out to @pgpfoundation about their lineup and the all male images in their ads. Their response was one we’ve heard before: “More women are coming soon!” In the meantime, their tweet tagged all their female speakers so followers could take a gander at the women on the lineup. (You know there’s a problem when you have a full day of speakers and enough characters to fit all your female speakers’ Twitter handles in one tweet.)

We responded too by sending them a GA tally that offered actual numbers:


Apparently, they couldn’t take the heat. The next thing we knew, they had blocked us:


We asked @pgpfoundation why there were almost no #FiscalSummit women speakers. Here's their response. #genderavenger

— GenderAvenger (@GenderAvenger) May 18, 2015

When GenderAvenger informed its community of this, the reaction was swift. Numerous followers expressed their dismay. These are just a few of our favorites:


Oh no they didn't. Not cool. https://t.co/qOxoItVL8n

— McKenzie Brickl (@MckBrickl) May 19, 2015

No speakers, no followers? ;) https://t.co/bOGbLjEwT1

— Denise Graveline (@NoWomenSpeakers) May 18, 2015

Seriously, @pgpfoundation? You answer to your lack of women's voices by blocking women? #genderavenger https://t.co/DWFiuf4T2P

— Elan Morgan (@schmutzie) May 18, 2015

As GenderAvenger Founder, Gina Glantz tweeted: “Lesson: You can shut us off but you can’t shut us up.

Our tweet was retweeted so many times that it ended up being the top tweet under the hashtag #FiscalSummit for most of the conference. After 30 minutes of a flurry of tweets from dismayed followers and their friends, the Peter G. Peterson Foundation unblocked GenderAvenger.


So you are paying attention, @pgpfoundation! Officially unblocked---now can you change these numbers? http://t.co/3X5Ozmp4tO #FiscalSummit

— GenderAvenger (@GenderAvenger) May 18, 2015

We're unblocked! If you're making changes @pgpfoundation, this 16% women #fiscalsummit lineup could use some work: http://t.co/Ocj1LRVtcd

— GenderAvenger (@GenderAvenger) May 18, 2015

By the day of the event, the numbers had shifted since our first tally — one additional woman speaker was added, while two male speakers no longer appeared on the lineup. Sadly, that barely changed the ratio, so GenderAvenger continued to expose the imbalance throughout the event. The Fiscal Summit touted its four great women moderators, pictures and all, but that couldn’t blunt the fact that virtually all the panelists were men. In fact, 3 of the 4 women all appeared only on the last panel of the day.

Strangely, while GenderAvenger tweets during the event continued in real time, none appeared on the streaming conference page. Hmmmm.

Nevertheless, we are optimists. Change is possible. The day after #FiscalSummit, we got to celebrate a Hall of Fame gender ratio at NY Ideas by The Aspen Institute, an organization that has previously appeared in our Hall of Shame. We’re hopeful that next year’s Fiscal Summit lineup looks different.