Latest from OWL
OWL Talks Business with Shark Tank’s Barbara Corcoran
If you’ve ever seen ABC’s Shark Tank, a reality show where Barbara Corcoran sits on a panel of successful venture capitalists hearing pitches from aspiring entrepreneurs, you’ll know exactly why this feisty businesswoman gives a whole new meaning to the term ‘loan shark’.
In fact, at this week’s Senate hearing on Women Entrepreneurship, hosted by the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, The Shark wasn’t the only one talking about loans. Everyone involved was emphasizing the challenge women face in accessing finance, from Small Business Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet to media mogul and entrepreneur Nely Galán to leaders from Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP). When it comes to women reeling in venture capital funding, witness after witness proved that it is “enormously difficult to compete with men”.
Given the egregious findings of the report Senator Cantwell released yesterday on behalf of the Committee, ‘enormously’ is an understatement. The report stated that women only receive 4.4% of business loans, and that the U.S. government has never met its goal of allocating a mere 5% of federal contracts to women-led businesses.
Click here to read the full blog post.
Posted by Brittany Reid on 07/25 at 11:47 AM
Know the Facts: Misconceptions About SSDI
There’s been a lot of news lately about the Social Security Disability Insurance Program, including accusations that it’s being abused, that claims are skyrocketing, and that it’s about to go bankrupt.
It’s important to know the facts, and the recent post from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities is an excellent summary of the critical role SSDI plays in millions of people’s lives, and what the real funding issues are.
First, SSDI payments go to people in need. The article points out that the typical beneficiary is in his or her late 50s and suffers from a severe mental, musculoskeletal, or other debilitating impairment.
Many are also poor. CBPP notes that poverty rates for disability insurance recipients are twice as high – even when taking those benefits into account.
Overall, about one-fifth of all disabled-worker families are poor; without DI, nearly half would be.
And yes, the rolls have been growing – but the reasons are from well-known demographic factors: more people, more older people, more women in the workforce – and ironically enough, the rise in the Social Security full retirement age from 65 to 66. The recession also bumped up applications, since unemployment drives those up. But approval rates actually fall when unemployment is high.
Click here to read the full blog post.
Posted by Pat Lewis on 07/24 at 03:16 PM
Commemorating the 50th Birthday of the Civil Rights Act
“We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads of the tapestry are equal in value no matter what their color.” —Maya Angelou
50 years ago today, Congress passed the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964, and created the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to enforce the Act. Today, the EEOC enforces a number of federal statutes protecting workers from discrimination.
As we recognize the progress we’ve made as a nation in achieving equality for all, we also realize more needs to be done. Despite federal anti-discrimination laws, age-based discrimination complaints have increased by 50% over the past several years, and women still earn only 77 cents for every dollar men earn. OWL will continue its work on behalf of women 40+ in the areas of equality, economic security, and quality of life.
Click here to read the full blog post.
Posted by Bobbie Brinegar on 07/02 at 04:17 PM
OWL Quoted in Fox Business News
OWL Executive Director Bobbie Brinegar is quoted in a June 27 article on female entrepreneurs written by Fox Business reporter Christina Scotti. The article, “Female Entrepreneurship Growing Faster Than Ever,” highlights the impressive growth rate (68% since 1997) of women-owned businesses, which now number 9.1 million. It also mentions a Harvard study which found that men—especially attractive ones—have a much easier time than women in securing funds from venture capitalists. Bobbie responded to these findings by calling for change: “It’s ridiculous to think males have more persuasiveness, and we need to get rid of this unfounded bias by advocating for the millions of smart and successful women entrepreneurs out there.”
Posted by Pat Lewis on 06/30 at 11:49 AM
Women: A Civil Rights Afterthought Then, Taking Charge in Business Now
By Janna Starr
Secretary, OWL National, and President, The Arc Oregon
As we commemorate the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which, among other things, makes it unlawful for an employer to refuse to hire, or to fire or discriminate against anyone because of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin, we might take a moment to remember that women were an afterthought in the Act. The word “sex” was not added to Title VII until late in the process when a Democrat from Virginia introduced it in a one-word amendment. Rumor had it that the Representative, who generally opposed integration legislation, did so in order to increase opposition to the bill by labor unions, which had opposed including women in employment legislation.
The rest, as we know, is history. Thanks to the strong efforts of women’s advocacy organizations and civil rights leaders in Congress, the Civil Rights Act – with the ban on sex discrimination included was signed into law.
Women have clearly made great strides in the world of employment since then. And lately, they have been breaking ground in another business arena: entrepreneurship.
Click here to read the full blog post.
Posted by Pat Lewis on 06/30 at 11:16 AM
OWL E.D. Attends the White House Summit on Working Families
On Monday, June 23rd, OWL Executive Director Bobbie Brinegar attended the White House Summit on Working Families.
OWL is proud to work with Tina Tchen and the White House Council on Women and Girls to bring the workplace up to speed for women. Advance workplace equality by sharing your working family story and telling the White House how women 40+ would be helped by 21st-century workplace policies by visiting I’m Ready for Workplace Policies wall.
Click here to read more about the summit.
Posted by Bobbie Brinegar on 06/23 at 02:26 PM
Senate Aging Committee Holds Hearing on Social Security Office Closures and Service Cuts
OWL Program Manager Brittany Reid attended the Senate Special Committee on Aging’s hearing to investigate the effect of Social Security Administration (SSA)’s recent office closures and service cuts. As a result of a bipartisan investigation, Chairman Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) and Ranking Member Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) sought to examine why, despite the increase in case load due to the aging of the baby boomer population, more offices than ever, 64 since 2010, were being closed nationwide.
Here at OWL we are on the same page as the Senators: face-to-face contact is essential to ensuring the economic security of our aging population.
Click here to read more about the Hearing.
Posted by Bobbie Brinegar on 06/18 at 05:12 PM
Vital Voices Honors Global Leaders
OWL Executive Director Bobbie Brinegar and Program Manager Brittany Reid attended Vital Voices’ 13th Annual Global Leadership Awards Tuesday night at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts Concert Hall. The inspiring evening opened with Vital Voices President and CEO Alyse Nelson remarking on the importance of women in leadership nationwide, saying that women are working on issues that “are not just women’s issues, but THE issues impacting our shared futures.”
Click here to read more about the event.
Posted by Bobbie Brinegar on 06/18 at 04:30 PM
Gracia M. Hillman Joins OWL Board of Directors
OWL welcomes Gracia M. Hillman to its Board of Directors. Gracia currently provides management consulting services as President and Principal Consultant of G. M. Hillman & Associates, Inc. (formerly The Hillman Group, Inc.) She also serves as a Senior Fellow at Demos, a public policy organization working for an America where all have an equal say in democracy and an equal chance in economic prosperity. She contributes to Demos’ work to expand the freedom to vote for all of America’s citizens. Her previous writings include “Toward A More Perfect Union: The Congressional Black Caucus & Voting Rights” and “E-Voting and Democracy in America.”
Gracia’s previous work includes the following positions:
Chair, Vice Chair and Commissioner, U.S. Election Assistance Commission
Senior Coordinator for International Women’s Issues, U.S. Department of State
Nonprofit Executive Management:
President and CEO, WorldSpace Foundation
Executive Director, League of Women Voters of the U.S.
Interim Executive Director, Congressional Black Caucus Foundation
Executive Director, National Coalition on Black Voter Participation
Executive Advisor, Council on Foundations
Click here to read Gracia’s full bio.
Posted by Bobbie Brinegar on 06/16 at 02:21 PM
Growth Rate of Women-Owned Businesses “Remarkable”
OWL Executive Director Bobbie Brinegar attended a Center for American Progress event focusing on improving entrepreneurship opportunities, including for women- and minority-owned small businesses. The event featured keynote speaker SBA Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet, who outlined her vision for ensuring small business owners have the resources and capital they need to succeed.
Posted by Bobbie Brinegar on 06/15 at 08:41 PM
Statement on RAISE Act of 2014
OWL applauds Senators Mark Begich and Patty Murray for taking the lead on this important and timely legislation. Working to ensure the economic security of the more than 70 million women over 40 is one of OWL’s core missions, and the RAISE Act is a positive step toward that goal.
Posted by Bobbie Brinegar on 06/11 at 04:02 PM
OWL Board Member Shares Success Story on Fox Business
In a story titled, How the Underdog Won, Fox Business profiles how OWL board member Carol Gardner built a $50 million business after the age of 50:
“At 52 years old, I was getting a divorce and I was in serious debt,” explains the former ad executive. “My divorce attorney said at the time, ‘Either get a therapist or get a dog,’ and I had always wanted an English bulldog, so I went looking and found Zelda. She was four-months old and was the mirror image of me: She looked sad and wanted to be loved, and I needed the same.”
To read more about how Zelda and Gardner built a greeting card empire, please click here.
Posted by Mark on 05/24 at 11:50 AM
OWL Hosts Capitol Hill Briefing on Long-Term Care
To mark the release of the OWL 2014 Mother’s Day Report on long term care, Keep Calm and Manage Your Future, OWL hosted a panel of six experts on Capitol Hill on May 8. At the briefing, participants presented additional perspectives on the challenges of providing long term supports and services (LTSS).
To read more, please click here.
To view a video of the briefing, please click here.
Posted by Margaret Huyck on 05/13 at 06:06 PM
2014 Mother’s Day Report Released
OWL’s 2014 Mother’s Day Report focuses on long-term care—an issue that has implications not only for families and individuals, but for our nation’s economic health. An unprecedented shift in demographics makes it more important than ever before for our nation to address this critical issue.
Please click here to learn more and for a link to download the report.
Posted by Bobbie Brinegar on 05/02 at 06:09 PM
OWL is Headed to the Hill(s)! Mark your Calendar for May 8 and Join Us!
Mark your calendar for 11:00 a.m., Thursday, May 8, when OWL will release its annual Mother’s Day Report at a briefing on Capitol Hill in room 188 of the Senate Russell Building. This year’s topic is Long-Term Care: Managing Our Future—a critical issue. We’re observing the report’s release with a briefing on the Hill, lending OWL’s voice to the recent outcry for a long-term care system that works.
Please click here for details.
Posted by Mark on 04/18 at 09:01 AM
Happy Birthday to OWL Board President Margaret Hellie Huyck
OWL is delighted to wish Board President Margaret Hellie Huyck a Happy 75th Birthday.
Click here to share in Margaret’s reflections upon the occasion.
Posted by Bobbie Brinegar on 04/10 at 07:47 AM
April 8 is Equal Pay Day
April 8 is Equal Pay Day. OWL Executive Director Bobbie Brinegar was honored to be among those in attendance at the White House today when President Obama undertook two executive actions to help combat pay discrimination and strengthen enforcement of equal pay laws.
To read more click here.
Posted by Mark on 04/08 at 08:50 AM
OWL Director Among Guests at Reception for Janet Yellen
OWL’s executive director, Bobbie Brinegar, was among the guests at a reception hosted by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi in honor of first female Fed Chair, Janet Yellen on March 25th. “It was a privilege for OWL to be represented at the event,” said Brinegar. Click here for photos.
Posted by Mark on 03/27 at 09:17 AM
Peggy Wrightsman Parolin Joins OWL Board of Directors
OWL National has announced the appointment of Peggy Wrightsman Parolin to its Board of Directors.
Wrightsman Parolin is the Director of Licensing Acquisitions-Editorial for Hallmark Cards. In her work, she has partnered with Disney, Warner Bros., Peanuts, Marvel, DreamWorks, Lucasfilms, The Simpsons, Garfield, and other clients to bring relevant, meaningful content to social expression products that evoke laughter, tears and memories, reminding millions what it means to be human.
To continue reading, click here.
Posted by Mark on 03/15 at 12:28 AM
Women Missing from Political Talk Shows
The hardest thing to see is usually what’s missing.
With that in mind, take a moment to stop and consider what you probably didn’t see on the Sunday morning political talk shows yesterday.
The answer is women.
In fact, analysis by Media Matters shows that women represent a mere 25% of all guests on Sunday morning television news shows. When it comes to solo interview guests, women comprise only 15% of the total.
If the guest list for these programs is understood as an indication of whom ABC, CBS, CNN, FOX, and NBC recognize as power players, women aren’t faring too well. And, we certainly don’t seem to be rising in their esteem—women’s representation has increased a less than significant percentage point since 2008.
That’s why OWL was proud to join 23 other women’s organizations in asking the presidents or CEO’s of the major networks to immediately address the disparity in representation on political talk shows.
To continue reading, please click here.
Posted by Bobbie Brinegar on 02/03 at 08:59 AM