2012 Global Leadership Summit Session 3b: Sheryl WuDunn

Sheryl WuDunn - 2012Session 3 – Half the Sky: Leadership in the Face of Oppression
Sheryl WuDunn

Best-Selling Author;
Pulitzer Prize Winner;
Business Executive

  • Author of the award-winning book, Half The Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide
  • Senior Managing Director of Mid-Market Securities and President of Triple Edge, two social investment and consulting firms specializing in companies run by women
  • Pulitzer Prize winner for Asia: Thunder from the East and China Wakes, co-authored with her husband Nicholas Kristof
  • Senior Fellow at Yale University, with a focus on China’s global role

Session Notes

  • Told story of a 12 year old Chinese girl whose family was going to discontinue her school for financial reason. Because of a donation, girls in her town were able to go to school, many went off to get good paying jobs, sent money back to their parents, town because well off and prestigious.
  • The biggest issue of our time is gender equity.
  • Women and girls aren’t the problem, they are part of the solution.
  • Girls who are better educated tend to have fewer children
  • In impoverished countries where women are uneducated and men control family spending, about 20% of family income goes to alcohol, prostitution and festivals.
  • If you’re not utilizing half the talent in your country, you will never be a top 10 nation. -Bill gates
  • Sex slavery is a major problem around the world and even in the U.S.
  • Her husband bought 2 slaves for $150-$200. They are expendable.
  • Maternity mortality is a major problem int he developing world. In Niger, 1 in 7 women can expect to die during child birth.
  • When micro-finance works it can be transformative.
  • Told the story of a 13 year old girl whose bladder tore during child birth. She was left for dead by her village. She walked/crawled 33 miles ot the nearest village where a missionary helped her get the surgery she needed. She now works as a nurse at the medical center.
  • It’s hard to help people. Many programs fail. But we’re learning.
  • There are very few things in life that can change your level of happiness. One of those is contributing to a cause larger than yourself.
  • We have all won the lottery of life. The question is how we discharge that responsible.

What impacted you from Sheryl’s talk?  What action will you take as a result?


  1. 30 Memorable Quotes from the 2012 Global Leadership Summit #wcagls | Live Intentionally - August 11, 2012

    […] We have all won the lottery of life. The question is how we discharge that responsible. -Sheryl WuDunn […]

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