Leaders of the YWCA Movement

  • Maria Chavez Wilcox
  • Monique McIntosh
  • Treopia L. Cannon
  • Beatriz Velasquez
  • Donique McIntosh
  • Ratha Sen, MS
  • Geeta Aiyer
  • Payal Sharma
  • Norma Gaines
  • Angela Maldonado
  • Paula Penebaker
  • Patricia Nolen
  • Darcy Cooper
  • Sandy Hurd
  • Sana Bell
  • Irma Magana
  • Dorri McWhorter
  • Sandra C. Cano
  • Joyce McNickles
  • Margaret Taylor
Maria Chavez Wilcox, CEO, YWCA Seattle | King | Snohomish
"Lead by example. Show up! Do the tough work as actions speak louder than words."
Monique McIntosh, M.Ed, Chief Administrative Officer, YWCA Greater Pittsburgh
"Women of color in leadership bring to the table diversity of thought and cultural experiences which are essential to innovation and systems-level change."
Treopia L. Cannon, President/CEO, YWCA Lake County
"I am a visionary leader. I believe that you cannot lead if you keep looking back. When you look back you stop or slow down."
Beatriz Velasquez, YWCA Clark County, Bilingual Advocacy Specialist for the SafeChoice Domestic Violence Program
"I’m vulnerable and open about my own challenges. People are tired of seeing untouchable and unrealistic people in the media. I believe that by sharing my story and everything I’ve overcome, I can inspire other people and give them hope."
Donique McIntosh, YWCA Clark County, Bilingual Advocacy Specialist for the SafeChoice Domestic Violence Program
"I find joy in helping other women, and young women in particular, discover and enhance their passions and talents and in providing them with opportunities to showcase those talents and flourish."
Ratha Sen, MS, YWCA Rhode Island, USA Board of Directors
"We can be the change and make a difference in the world, regardless of our skin color. Having more women of color in leadership will empower and encourage younger women and girls to become leaders."
Geeta Aiyer, YWCA Boston Board Member, Founder & President, Boston Common Asset Management, LLC
"Success is a minefield of accomplishments and failures. Take risks, take responsibility. Learn from the journey and lead with integrity. Learn skills; work where your passion lies. With success comes responsibility. Give back to your community and to the causes that inspire you."
Payal Sharma, YWCA Boston, Racial Justice Program Manager.
"As a South Asian woman of color, I understand that I have a skill set that I want to use in service of making this country a more equitable place. I know that if liberation theory holds true, that me doing the work that I do and doing it well also means that I am making the world better for myself."
Norma Gaines, YWCA Southeast Wisconsin, Operations Director
"I lead and help other women to become leaders by displaying a positive determination to manage circumstances toward a productive outcome. I have shared this approach with those that I have mentored that were striving to become leaders in their respective environments."
Angela Maldonado, YWCA Southeast Wisconsin, Case Management Manager
"When women of color hold leadership roles, we are opening up to a new narrative and a new way of thinking. This is important because it sends the message that we can bring all voices to the table and hiring women of color can truly create positive change."
Paula Penebaker, YWCA Southeast Wisconsin, President & CEO
"We have to be vigilant to ensure talent is assessed fairly, not in contrast or comparison to our white counterparts whose experiences and challenges often do not mirror our own. Our contributions are vast. We must ensure that there not be more "hidden figures" in the future."
Patricia Nolen, YWCA Southeast Wisconsin, Quality Assurance and Training Manager
"I like to believe that I lead by example and motivation. When others see what I have achieved, it gives them something to strive for. I set my standards high, which requires others to do the same."
Darcy Cooper, YWCA Southeast Wisconsin, W2 Eligibility Manager
"I express to my staff and clients often how much they are valued. Leading by example, I try to be the person that people would want to follow."
Sandy Hurd, YWCA Southeast Wisconsin, IT Help Desk Supervisor
"I talk to my aunts, cousins, sisters, nieces, daughters, and friends. I try to inspire them to have more education to develop their own businesses so that they can pay it forward for the next woman of color."
Sana Bell, YWCA Metropolitan Chicago, Data Strategy and Impact Officer
"Women of color in leadership are role models and inspiration for young girls, to go after their goals in the midst of adversity. They are able to address how living in a patriarchal society impacts their lives and their children’s; as well as bring attention to the needs of those who are often neglected to the forefront to improve society."
Irma Magana, YWCA Clark County, Bilingual Advocacy Specialist for the Sexual Assault Program
"I lead by example. I think when you are sincere and show people who you really are, that encourages others to be themselves, too. Leading by example is empowering, and it also helps to decrease numbers of underrepresented women of color, in organizations across the board, and in important roles in the White House in the entire nation."
Dorri McWhorter, YWCA Metropolitan Chicago, CEO
"The Centennial Anniversary of Women's Suffrage is rapidly approaching in 2020. Closing the gender equality gap in particular as it pertains to women of color would be a great milestone to ensure that over 100 years women have actually achieved equality. This is the sense of urgency that we see around this issue."
Sandra C. Cano, YWCA Rhode Island, Board Member
"We can never forget that women make up half of world population. If we seek fairness and justice in societies, then we must advocate and lead for these ideals. Most importantly we ALL must care!"
Joyce McNickles, YWCA of Central Massachusetts, Board member and Co-chair of the Racial Justice Task Force
"As a women of color, I feel compelled to promote equity and justice by leading with conviction, courage, and compassion."
Margaret Taylor, YWCA Charleston –Sojourner's Shelter for Homeless Women and Families, Program Director
"I am firm and known for my fairness as a leader who possesses a subtle quietness not to be interpreted as a weakness. I believe that attentive listening is as important, if not more important, than speaking. I am always mindful that leading by example is the best way to get others to incorporate these work ethics into the workplace."