Tile Womens Int Day

Celebrating International Women’s Day

Today is International Women’s Day, a day which was first marked in the early 1900’s and is dedicated to the rights of women. Celebrating women’s achievements and empowerment as well as advancing gender equality are the catalysts of International Women’s Day, aiming to bring together different communities, governments, organisations and charities. We chatted with three women whose seismic influence extends far beyond Newmarket.

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Kathryn Wilson

N. What do you do?

I’m the Founder and CEO of Kathryn Wilson Footwear.

N. We’ve increasingly seen more of a shift towards gender equality in NZ and across the world, particularly with recent movements such as #MeToo. In what way do you think society’s views on women and female roles have changed over the years?

I am excited to be part of an industry that celebrates women in leadership and innovation. I believe New Zealand has been a leader in this movement and I’m hoping by the time my daughters are working in their dream careers there will be no stigma or barriers around diversity of sex, race or religion.

N. Can you tell us about a female role model who has inspired you?

I am fortunate to have had so many over the years… Dame Rosanne Meo, Dame Julie Christie and Cecilia Robinson have all mentored me through business over the years along with Caroline Sills. However, I am inspired by women every day that are pursuing their dreams, pushing for the best in life and helping others around them achieve more.

N. What advice would you give young women who want to succeed in their industry?

Dream big, start now and don’t take no for an answer! Slow down and listen to the support networks around you and don’t forget to thank those who have helped you along the way.

 

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Di Goldsworthy

N. What do you do?

I work with the Newmarket Business Association, as Arts & Heritage Manager.

N. We’ve increasingly seen more of a shift towards gender equality in NZ and across the world, particularly with recent movements such as #metoo. In what way do you think society’s views on women and female roles have changed over the years?

Society’s views on women and female roles has changed dramatically in my lifetime. I was born in the 1940’s when women were very much looked upon as the homemaker and child- minder, very few pursued careers. At school the girls were encouraged to take courses to prepare them to become good secretaries, teachers and nurses. It wasn’t until about the 60’s that times changed, and gradually women were stepping up (and being accepted) to what had previously been “men only” roles. Women were becoming prominent in many fields – medicine, law, business etc. Society’s views had to change. “Girls Can Do Anything!”

N. Can you tell us about a female role model who has inspired you?

I was very inspired by my first boss, the manager at Kays Beauty Salon, Sophie Zak. I was the junior receptionist. Sophie was elegant, stylish, always immaculate in appearance. She was also a part-time model. For one who had come from a charmed background I had much to learn from this beautiful woman who had come to New Zealand alone as a Polish refugee. I think of her often.

N. What advice would you give young women who want to succeed in their industry?

Believe in yourself, be confident, be prepared, be a good listener. Treat others with respect.

 

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Kelly Coe

N. What do you do?

I am the co-owner and designer of women’s clothing label ‘Augustine’. I am also a mummy to 3 little ladies.

N. We’ve increasingly seen more of a shift towards gender equality in NZ and across the world, particularly with recent movements such as #MeToo. In what way do you think society’s views on women and female roles have changed over the years?

I think women have so much more power and belief in themselves now than what they used to. We as women truly believe that we are capable of anything and that there is no job or activity that we can’t do simply because we are female. It’s an amazing time to grow up in and to be raising 3 young ladies, our girls will grow up knowing they can be anything they want to be and that is so empowering. With the #MeToo movement, men are so aware that they won’t get away with such blatant sexism that may have been accepted in the past. Women not only believe in themselves, but they stand up for themselves and will be heard. With the power of social media today, you don’t need to be on TV or be famous to be heard, you just need a social channel and you can get your voice out there. It is an exciting time and I can’t wait to see what women will achieve next in the coming generations. In terms of the fashion and beauty industry I think we are seeing more and more social media accounts that are combating body image and showing that you can be strong and beautiful no matter what your shape or size. I think that is so cool for our next generation of woman to see. Any woman can empower herself through social media.

N. Can you tell us about a female role model who has inspired you?

Turia Pitt would get my vote for most inspiring lady of our time, she fascinates me. She is not a world leader, famous actress or politician, but to be honest that doesn’t interest me. Turia is a woman that in a time that appearance and social media is so prominent, she is there saying it is okay not to be perfect, you can still be beautiful. She is strong, she has overcome the most grueling of obstacles and she just marches on. She could have just survived, but instead she relishes and achieves more than most people do in a lifetime, and I just find that so incredible and inspiring.

N. What advice would you give young women who want to succeed in their industry?

I would say to make sure you are in an industry you are truly passionate about. Choose a career that motivates and inspires you and you will never work a day in your life. You can’t do great things if the core of the industry or the product is not your passion. You have to love what you are going to create in order to do it right. And nothing comes without hard work – I think this next generation of ‘millennials’ expect so much to fall in their laps and need to remember that hard graft is what brings success.

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