The Women’s Brain Trust has been in the making for a long while.

I’ve had three beautiful babies in the last seven years and, like so many working mothers, I am on a mission to reconcile the impossibility of being the primary, caregiving parent Monday through Friday with a deep desire to contribute meaningfully to building a better world. I rely on the many women in my life for their wisdom about parenting and partnership, to hold space for me to express my doubts and fears, for their love and support. I am endlessly inspired by the talented women who surround me.

Despite our extensive professional expertise across many fields, so many of us have felt undervalued and have been underpaid relative to our male colleagues. Through conversations with former female colleagues and friends we realized that we share so much, including a strong belief that the very qualities for which we have often been dismissed, like our empathy, intuition and desire to lift up dissenting perspectives, are the strengths that make the critical difference in overcoming challenges.

Women’s Brain Trust began as an effort to call upon talented former colleagues, friends and public sector leaders and to create a space where we could highlight, celebrate and learn from each other’s strengths, collaborate on work and inspire one another. We are not a consulting firm. We are, however, a group of fiercely talented women with a collective wealth of experience, learning and potential. We activate the collective to lift each other up.

Across the public sector, and for sure in the world of public education, the adaptive challenges we face need holistic approaches and a re-envisioning of who sits at the table in order to reimagine our broken systems. These challenges need smart women. The Women’s Brain Trust is a collective pushing against the edges of our professional fields to break down the barriers that stand in the way of creative problem-solving.

Thanks so much for being here,

Jenna Shapiro
Founder, Women’s Brain Trust