Program & Replays

Fempowerment 2020: Activating a Gender-Jubilant Future

Broadcast on December 03, 2019
With Surina Khan & Devaa Haley Mitchell & Rev. Dereca Blackmon & Christine Marie Mason

By the numbers the state of women in the US is now better, historically speaking, than it has ever been before. We’re earning up to 85 cents on the dollar (compared to men) for wages; we have the highest representation of elected officials in history; education levels are at an all-time high. Still there is a long way to go for women to achieve parity in controlling capital and resources, and to amplify our voice in many sectors of society. And, sadly, we are witnessing an aggressive backlash against the advances we have made.

Moreover, the advances we have seen are unevenly allocated across race and income. Panelists will discuss our vision of the future of women in the US - and how to activate our resources to make true parity a reality.

The opinions expressed here are those of the author/presenter and are not representative of Shift Network employees, customers, or other presenters.
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Surina Khan

CEO of the Women’s Foundation of California

Surina Khan is CEO of the Women’s Foundation of California where she leads the Foundation’s work to advance the health, safety, and economic security of women, girls and transgender people in California. The Foundation’s program strategy is focused on building community-based power through investing in community organizations, training community leaders in policy advocacy, convening key partners, and mobilizing significant financial resources. For more than two decades, Surina has been a leader in the philanthropic and non-profit social justice sector starting with local community-based publishing in New England and then shifting to national and global work on an array of social justice issues including women’s rights, LGBT rights, human rights and more. She is a recognized advocate for gender, racial, and economic justice and a frequent commentator on the power of women’s philanthropy.

Devaa Haley Mitchell

Co-Founder of The Shift Network, Spiritual Mentor & Guide, Sound Healer & Musician

Rev. Dr. Devaa Haley Mitchell is a transformational leader who helps people reconnect with their spiritual depths, unleash their leadership gifts, and step into their full potential. Devaa is founder of the Inspiring Women with Soul series, which has served over 130,000 women from more than 160 countries. Her private practice, Radiant Essence Services, offers personal coaching and VIP retreats for clients from around the world.

Devaa is the co-founder and Chief Impact Officer of The Shift Network, where she guides and oversees Shift’s social change initiatives as well its philanthropic activities, finding ways to leverage the educational and network assets for the greatest public benefit. Shift’s impact work focuses on peacebuilding, women’s empowerment, racial healing, and civic engagement. She’s also a key player in leading and supporting the ongoing evolution of Shift’s transformational culture, both inside the company and with customers around the world.

Devaa earned both her BA and MA from Stanford University. She received her doctorate in Ministry from Wisdom University (now known as Ubiquity University) and is also an ordained interfaith minister. She was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship for her ecological anthropology work with Indigenous groups in the Brazilian Amazon.

Earlier in her career, Devaa was a management consultant at the Boston Consulting Group where she consulted with Fortune 500 Companies. She later worked as the founding Executive Director of the Full Circle Fund, a thriving venture philanthropy group, followed by a senior director role at the Institute of Noetic Sciences. She is also a member of the prestigious Evolutionary Leaders group.

Her pro bono service projects include serving as Acting Director of the Madrone Grove forest school, which she founded along with her husband and a few colleagues who were dedicated to creating an “awakening” curriculum for kids. She also served as Music Director at the San Quentin Prison’s Parallel Play Project, in collaboration with Marin Shakespeare. Her international service projects include training local staff to leverage arts-based techniques for transforming violence in Angola, facilitating a healing program for staff members at an HIV orphanage in Ethiopia, and distributing water filters in rural areas of India and other locations.

In her spare time, Devaa is a musician whose songs fuse East and West with danceable grooves. Her debut album, Sacred Alchemy, aimed to reawaken and liberate the many dimensions of the Sacred Feminine. Her most recent album, Rebirth, reached #1 on Amazon in the New Age Category.

Rev. Dereca Blackmon

Speaker, Facilitator & National Expert on Topics of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Rev. Dereca Blackmon is a passionate speaker, facilitator, and national expert on topics of diversity, equity, and inclusion. For over 25 years she has consulted with a wide variety of corporate, educational, nonprofit, and community-based groups to facilitate “uncommon conversations” on issues of race, gender, class, and social justice. Her experiential training models cut through “diversity fatigue” and allow participants to engage in deep, authentic, and meaningful dialogues.

She served as the Assistant Vice Provost and Director of the Diversity and First-Generation Office at Stanford University, where she introduced groundbreaking work on authentic engagement, intergroup dialogue, and unconscious bias to over 30,000 students, staff, faculty, and alumni. She also taught several courses at Stanford, including Intergroup Communication with renowned cultural psychologist Hazel Markus, which typically has a waitlist of over 250 students.

Dereca co-led the effort to organize the Bay Area community response to the murder of Oscar Grant III by transit police. After mobilizing thousands of protestors and holding countless meetings and rallies, she began to question the strategy of organizing “against” rather than “for.” She entered ministerial school and has never looked back, becoming one of the nation’s leading speakers on spiritual activism.

Her training, activism, and youth development work have been featured in two books — Black Youth Rising by Dr. Shawn Ginwright, and Learning to Liberate by Dr. Vajra Watson — and cited in countless national forums, including The Wall Street Journal, CNN, and The New York Times.

Christine Marie Mason

Founder of Rosebud Woman

Christine Marie Mason is a six-time founder and CEO with several $100M+ exits, an author, yogi, purposeful teacher and speaker, a mom of four, and a grandmother. Her current endeavor, Rosebud Woman, invites a new conversation about women, women’s bodies, self-care and power. She is the co-founder and director of New Earth Mandala, a meditation, yoga and art center on Hawaii. Christine has been teaching, studying and writing on yoga and consciousness since 2000, with an emphasis on bringing yoga into daily life and human systems. Her books include Indivisible, Bending the Bow, The Invitation, Love in the Face of Everything and the upcoming 9 Gifts.

Surina Khan & Devaa Haley Mitchell & Rev. Dereca Blackmon & Christine Marie Mason