This past Sunday, I was able to attend the Glamour Women of the Year Summit. My boss was one of the speakers and got all the millennial women in the office comp tickets. I was excited to go, and was pleasantly surprised at my experience.
The day consisted of a light breakfast and lunch with panel discussions in between. The day ended with experiences spread out all over the city for smaller, more intimate discussions. Beforehand I didn’t research who was going to be there except for the experiences, and I had my reservations. Glamour is the same magazine that had given Linda Fairstein the Woman of the Year award in 1993 for her work in prosecuting the young men who were once known as the Central Park 5. Glamour has since stripped her of that title after the backlash from “When They See Us”, but I remembered this and wasn’t sure what kind of environment would be waiting for me.
One of the panel discussions that I enjoyed the most was entitled “We Are All Leading Ladies” with Beanie Feldstein, from How to Build a Girl, Britney Young, from Glow, and Mj Rodriguez from Pose (which I love). They discussed the lack of diversity and Britney Young brought up how as a biracial woman she wants to see more stories about her experience that aren’t rooted in slavery. This has always been an argument among the black community because remembering slavery is important, but our story does not start and end with slavery. This discussion was refreshing and helped me to feel seen.
A touching moment was when comedian Michelle Buteau highlighted her story of choosing surrogacy to have her children. I think surrogacy is becoming more common as women are being more open with their fertility struggles. But we still place such a premium on whether a woman is able to have a child. It was a nice reminder that there are many ways in which you can have a family.
The highlight of my day was my experience. I chose the Book Club with Tomi Adeyemi, author of The Children of Blood and Bone. This book has been on my list of books to read, but I’ve been putting it off because it’s a huge book and I’ve been a bit intimidated. The experience was about 15 minutes walking distance from the event. Tomi is so sweet and honest. She joined all of us ladies as we were sitting waiting for the event to be set up and we went around and introduced ourselves. Listening to her give some insight into her creative process and also the struggles as an African-American woman was encouraging for me. We all got copies of her book which I started reading yesterday and it really is amazing!
Overall, I had a good day at the Women of the Year Summit and I’m grateful for the experience! If you’re interested I would say it’s worth checking out!