I AM GOING TO AFRICA
For over 30 years I have worked as a makeup artist and have had the privilege to work on close to 100,000 women. These women inspire me to do what I do. These women are you. My desire to contribute and give back to women stems from the stories I hear.
From Mom’s to CEOs, from Entrepreneurs to World Travelers I have heard so many stories. From the sad and tragic to the powerful and triumphant. I have been inspired by my clients to be my best self, live my best life and to give everything I have to the business I have created.
Though a series of connections and suggestions I was given the opportunity to work with and support Eve Ensler, author of The Vagina Monologues and the founder of the movements V-Day and One Billion Rising. Her commitment to women globally is beyond inspirational. She not only tells the stories of women, she is committed to ending violence against women and girls worldwide. I told her whenever she needed me I would be there and that put me in New Orleans for the 10th anniversary of The Vagina Monologues, V to the 10th, three years after Hurricane Katrina.
I took a team of 17 makeup artists to create a Beauty Lounge (one of the many healing lounges offered) in the Superdome where the attendees would experience the healing power of beauty….and in the course of 3 days we cared for and made-over close to 2000 women. Some women wanted full applications, some women simply wanted to be recognized and to connect with someone. I didn’t know it at the time, but my trip to Africa was inevitable because of this trip. That was when I met Pat Mitchell.
It was over the course of several years that Pat and I continued to connect and eventually she became a client.
At first I admit, I did not know who she was. She was on the board for V-Day and one day I was at an event and Pat was on the panel. As her resume was read, I was blown away by the career she has had but more importantly that she has spent her life making a difference and telling the stories of women and of people who have impacted our world for good. She has been a change maker and connector and is committed to transforming our planet to a place where the human spirit is honored. She also was the catalyst for Eve to start the V-Day movement.
Whenever she would come into the studio I would get a little awestruck as in my mind she is one of the most influential women on this planet. You read her resume and let me know what you think.
Every time she sat in my chair I would ask “where are you making a difference in the world today?” “and don’t you need your makeup artist?”. As someone who cares deeply about the world around me and in having the profound respect for the impact Pat has had and continues to have on the world I always want to know where she is focusing her attention on having the greatest impact.
Last year she began sharing with me about her trips to Africa. I followed her journey on her blogs. https://www.patmitchellmedia.com/journal/2019/1/4/roar-africa?rq=roar
“ It was one of the most transformative weeks I can remember…. the realization that there are actions we can all take to change our corner of the world gave me a new sense of purpose. The reminder that no matter how disparate our lives seem, we share common threads and common narratives. Most of all, I was privileged to spend time with a group of people who find their ‘church’ in the wild and recognize that we all carry the wild within us.”
This led her to create another retreat this year. The participants include women who are impacting the world in a significant way.
This retreat is designed to not only be a way to connect with the beauty of nature of Africa and experience something referred to as re-wilding but to create a dialogue between women who are up to transforming the world in their own ways. Seeing as Pat is the director of TedX for Women, this has been referred to as Ted X on Safari. Please visit Roar Africa to see more! (as of right this second I can’t post from you tube but keep checking back!)
It was the end of March when Pat sat in my chair and shared with me about the retreat. She looked at me and said, “we had a cancellation, you should go”. To be honest in that moment I was startled. Here was one of the world’s most impactful women inviting me to participate with a group of extraordinary women.
When opportunities are put into your path sometimes all there is to say is yes.
In my life the most powerful experiences I have had is when you have no idea how you are going to figure it out and you just say YES.
I begin this journey on June 11th and return June 18th. I will be blogging and sharing this trip on facebook and Instagram and on the blog at myimagejourney.com
I invite you to join me as I embark on this adventure!
Women’s Empowerment: ROAR and RESTORE” June 11th-June 17th, 2019
As the winner of the 2016 Tusk Award for the Best Emerging Conservationist in Africa, Cathy Dreyer is a shining example of the commitment and future of young African leadership in Conservation in Africa. Coming from humble roots and starting her career at the bottom of the ladder, Cathy joined South African National Parks (SANParks) almost 19 years ago at the age of 22 as a conservation student, assisting with the capture of black rhino. As one of the first females in this male dominated industry, her perseverance and lifelong passion for the rhino species has ensured she’s built a career that shows that being a female and previously disadvantaged, is not a barrier to achieving great heights. Cathy continues to be a pioneer in the establishment of new Black Rhino populations all across South Africa, as well as Botswana, Malawi, Zambia and Tanzania. Besides working with Black Rhino, the highlight for Cathy of these translocations is to help bring people in conservation together.
Meagan Fallone Carnahan
Meagan Fallone is the CEO, Founder and Director of Barefoot College International, a hybrid social enterprise that empowers rural women and communities globally, through access to energy and the development of sustainable livelihoods. Mastering technology and entrepreneurial skills across the barrier of literacy, her ‘Solar Mama Entrepreneurs’ have brought clean light to one million people across 96 countries in the developing world. They are Ambassadors of the International Solar Alliance forged between India’s Prime Minister Modi and French President Macron, promoting renewable energy and localizing the UN Sustainable Development Goals. She has fostered an unparalleled eco system of entrepreneurial action at barefoot College such thatenvironmentally sustainable for profit enterprises have been launched under the brand name B.Barefoot. Coffee and Honey are now active in three countries, Solar Hardware in 30 countries and the production of a Nutritional Supplement called Super 5, across 5 states in India with the highest rates of malnutrition. The ‘Barefoot Approach’ is a community based inclusive approach to economic transformation, selfsufficiency & upliftment for marginalized and last mile communities.
In 2018 Megan was recognized as the 9th Hillary Laureate, an award given for leadership on Poverty, Climate Change, Peace and Justice. Her extensive award-winning work has earned The Barefoot College the place of #16 of the World’s Top 500 NGOs by the Geneva Global Journal.
Christine Schuler Deschryver
Christine Schuler Deschryver is Director of V-Day Congo and City of Joy. City of Joy is a revolutionary community for women survivors of violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo, created with support from V-Day and Fondaction Panzi, where pain is turned to leadership and power. In 1998, after the rape and murder of her best friend and the death of an infant in her arms, Christine devoted her life to alerting the world to the femicide and rape against women in DRC. She was named one of The Guardian’s Women of the Year for 2011. PLEASE WATCH THE NETFLIX DOCUMENTARY
Dr. Lucy King is a zoologist and the Head of the Human-Elephant Co-Existence Program for the research charity Save The Elephants based in Kenya. Dr King was brought up in Somalia, Lesotho and Kenya. She has been researching the use of honey bees as a natural deterrent for crop-raiding elephants since 2006 and has published her findings in numerous scientific journals. Her DPhil thesis, through Oxford University and in partnership with Save the Elephants and Disney’s Animal Kingdom, was awarded the UNEP/CMS Thesis Award 2011 from the United Nations Environment Program’s Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species. She won The Future for Nature Award and The St Andrews Prize for the Environment in 2013. She is actively involved in the Kenyan Elephant Forum (KEF) and in 2013 she was invited to join IUCN’s African Elephant Specialist Group.
Previously she completed an MSc in Biology, Integrative Bioscience, from Balliol College, Oxford (2006) and gained a First Class degree in Zoology from Bristol University (1999). Between 2000 and 2005, she led numerous conservation projects and adventurous expeditions to Africa and South America in her role as Operations Director for Quest Overseas. She now lives in Nairobi with her partner and is Head of the Human-Elephant Co-Existence Program for Save the Elephants.
Lindsey Taylor Wood
Lindsey brings ten years of experience as a leader in the gender equality movement to The Helm. An expert in the empowerment of girls and women, Lindsey is the Founder and President of LTW, an impact studio with an emphasis on contemporary feminism. Clients include actor Matt McGorry, MAKERS, The Conversation with Amanda de Cadenet, The Harnisch Foundation, Women Moving Millions, and filmmakers Jill Bauer, Ronna Gradus and Rashida Jones, among others. In partnership with these clients, LTW designed and implemented a wide range of programs, products, and systems, including but not limited to funding mechanisms and mentorship programs for media makers, content strategies for films and television programming, philanthropic strategies for family foundations, and social impact campaigns. Her ability to use philanthropy and culture symbiotically, and with a gender lens, has made her a sought-after strategist in the women’s rights movement.
Eve Burton is a Senior Vice President and the Chief Legal Officer of Hearst, one of the nation’s largest diversified media, information and services companies with more than 360 global businesses. Hearst’s major interests span business information companies that create and deliver content, analytics and workflow solutions for the finance, healthcare and transportation industries worldwide as well as cable entertainment and syndication, interactive and emerging digital media, local broadcast television, magazines, newspapers and real estate. Burton is a member of the Hearst Board of Directors. She has overall responsibility for legal services to all of Hearst’s businesses around the world. She also manages corporate human resource issues, Oracle HCM Operations, labor relations and government affairs.
Burton has been one of Hearst’s leaders in establishing worldwide strategic enterprise deals with partners. Additionally, she is a member of Hearst’s Venture Committee which funds digital initiatives and is a founder and chairwoman of HearstLab, which fosters innovation and investment in early stage businesses led by women.
Therese Rein was a social entrepreneur before that was a thing, founding and leading a values based, profit with purpose company before that was a thing either. She is passionate about respect for the uniqueness and potential of every human being irrespective of ability/disability, gender, ethnicity, country of origin, religion or sexual orientation. That translated into starting a rehabilitation service in 1989 and growing that into having 6000 colleagues in 10 countries serving half a million long term unemployed people at any one time and assisting them into decent lasting work. When First Lady of Australia, she was patron of many disability, arts, housing, food rescue and indigenous organizations and was awarded the Australian Human Rights Medal in 2010. She has been recognized with many business awards including EY’s Champion Entrepreneur of the Year, and awarded three honorary doctorates by leading Australian universities. Therese is patron of Barefoot College, mentoring a number of emerging social entrepreneurs, and newly Co-Chair of the National Apology Foundation for Indigenous Australians. Therese has three children and two grandchildren (so far) and enjoys the arts, singing in a small unprofessional choir, and walking with friends.
Aziza Alahmadi is named as one of Top 50 female executives in telecommunications (2011) by CommsMEA in the MENA region. Aziza Alahmadi leverages her years of experience as a game changer and transformation agent to champion female empowerment. She is a co-founder and managing director of THRU, a company that specializes in marketing and mobile gaming.
Cristiana Falcone Sorrell
Cristiana Falcone is a GLOBAL leader in media, business and social development sectors. She began her career in radio and television, covering foreign affairs including war and humanitarian crises. Over the past 15+ years she has honed her experience as a strategic adviser, investor and philanthropist and acquired vast experience with multinationals, international organizations and the media. As well as working directly for C – suite executives at SONY and Shell, she also held leadership advisory roles with the following companies and international organizations: ILO, IFAD, FAO, UNDCCP, IADB, RAI, Gruppo Espresso, the World Economic Forum and Univision.
Cristiana presently serves as Senior Adviser to the Executive Chairman and Founder of the World Economic Forum on New Initiatives and Special Projects. Joining the Forum in 2004, she led the Media, Entertainment and Information Industries, building and managing strategic partnerships with industry leaders, policymakers, experts and academics worldwide. In 2006, she pioneered The Digital Ecosystem a scenario-based tool aimed at garnering insight into digital disruption and its impact on the future of media. In 2008, in partnership with Yale University, she led the production of an online case study on media opportunities in fast-growing environments, featuring key industry leaders and profiling cutting-edge tech and knowledge.
Doris Casap is SVP, Film Programming, for HBO/Cinemax. Since January 2004, she has headed the Film Programming group for major studio output negotiations, library deals and independent film acquisitions and the tracking and analysis of movie volume and performance. Doris joined HBO’s Film Programming in 1991 acquiring films and television programming for HBO’s international networks. In 1992, Doris was promoted to manage the domestic licensing of programs for HBO/Cinemax. In 1998, she was promoted to Vice President and her duties expanded to a greater focus on major studio deals for HBO.
Alyson Hoag is the founder and CEO of Authentic Beauty and has spent more than thirty years helping woman look and feel beautiful. She works with celebrities, CEOs and thousands of real women helping them unearth their Authentic Beauty. Her career includes working with leading cosmetic giants of the likes of Aveda, Borghese, Lancome, Revlon, and Sebastian.
Garnering inspiration from best-selling author Sarah Ban Breathnach, Alyson invented the Image Journey and opened the Authentic Beauty Makeup Salon and Brow Studio in 2008.
Alyson was named one of Atlanta’s Most Powerful and Influential Women by The Atlanta, Most Creative by Common Creative, and Over 40 and Fabulous by Best Self Magazine. She is Laura Turner-Seydel’s personal makeup artist and her work can be seen in a bevy of Atlanta magazines such as Jezebel Magazine (winner of Best Makeup Artist 2010 and Best of What’s New 2009), and Best Self Magazine. She is also recognized as one of the best brow experts in the country and is affectionately known as the “brow guru” of Atlanta receiving the label “Best of the Best” by Allure Magazine 4 years in a row. In addition, she was voted best brow artist by Best Self Magazine.
Betsy Rapoport is a professional editor, writer, and a certified Martha Beck Master Life Coach. She has worked with accomplished authors such as Pat Mitchell, Dr. Martha Beck, Candice Bergen, Carrie Fisher, President Jimmy Carter, Magic Johnson, and others, and now specializes in creating book proposals and helping authors find agents and publishers. Betsy’s essays and articles have appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Huffington Post, Good Housekeeping, Redbook, and more. She is the coauthor with Rosalind Wiseman of Queen Bee Moms and Kingpin Dads.
Heather Pulier is an enormous champion of the power of entrepreneurial ideas, the necessity of risk, and the importance of interdisciplinary collaboration. She spent her early professional life immersed in media, working at L.A. Gear, Creative Artist Agency, Universal Pictures as well as with Richard Branson. Part of the founding team of U.S. Interactive she developed, wrote and produced a nationally recognized interactive game for Lilly Pharmaceuticals and the Starbright Foundation, winning an award from then President Bill Clinton. She also created and launched the social media platform Vooket and co-developed a voting app that launched on iTunes. In addition to her strategic talents, Heather is also highly creative. She has written screenplays, television pilots and articles for a number of outlets including Psychology Today. The publication of her book “Everything You Always Wanted To Know About Ex” landed her appearances on such nationally broadcast shows as The Today Show and ABC News.
Heather launched a Made in America manufacturing company, inspired by her books positive response she manufactured a “post it line” to inspire young women to be their best selves and to help job creation in downtown LA. She then produced her eponymous accessory line Heather Belle, Co, and was featured in Oprah Magazine as one of three inspired entrepreneurs for her innovative Vegan handbag collection. She then seized the opportunity for integrated merchandise and built a licensing company, creating and designing a product line for the highly popular Warner Brothers television show Pretty Little Liars and a select group of musicians.
Cristina Ljungberg is co-founder of The Case For Her, an innovative funding collaborative, investing in early stage markets. The first impact portfolio launched in 2017 is focused on menstrual health, including education, product innovation, research and distribution, followed by the second in 2018 focused on female sexual pleasure.
In 2010 Cristina launched Giving Wings in Stockholm, Sweden. The foundation’s work is focused on women and girl’s education and healthcare with a concentration in East Africa and South East Asia. She is an active board member of Afripads and a founding member of the Maverick Collective.
Beyond her work as a women’s health advocate Cristina is a founding partner at Influence Film, supporting the production of feature length documentary films and growing new audiences for them through Influence Film Club.
Kat Finck is junior at Middlebury College, majoring in Environmental Studies. When not climbing mountains, she performs with the Mamajamas, a co-ed a capella group at Middlebury. In 2014, she spent a semester in New Zealand with the National Outdoor Leadership program sea-kayaking, sailing, and mountain climbing. A fluent Spanish speaker, she has also worked on an almond farm in Southern Spain. In the fall of 2019, she will spend a semester aboard in Chile.
Lisa Schejola Akin
Lisa Schejola Akin is a mom, a wife, a daughter, a traveler, a triathlete, an activist and philanthropist and a dedicated supporter of women’s causes. She has been serving on Eve Ensler’s V-Day Board since 2011 and has been coordinating the One Billion Rising movement in Miami since its launch in 2012. The campaign began as a call to action based on the staggering statistic that 1 in 3 women on the planet will be beaten or raped during her lifetime. With the world population at 7 billion, one billion women and girls are affected. The campaign has become the biggest mass action to end violence against women in human history.
In Miami, she co-founded Casa Valentina, an organization that provides young women and men who age out of foster care at age 18 with safe, affordable housing and the support services they need to become functional, independent adults.
Pat Mitchell is the editorial director of TEDWomen. Throughout her career as a journalist, Emmy-winning producer and pioneering executive, she has focused on sharing women’s stories. She is chair of the Sundance and the Women’s Media Center boards and a trustee of the VDAY movement, the Skoll Foundation and the Acumen Fund. She is an advisor to Participant Media and served as a congressional appointment to The American Museum of Women’s History Advisory Council. She is the author of Becoming a Dangerous Woman: Embracing Risk to Change the World.
New York and Cape Town based Deborah Calmeyer is the founder and CEO of ultra-luxe experiential travel company ROAR AFRICA. In 2005, Deborah created ROAR AFRICA, the ultra-luxe bi-cultural travel company run by women, supported by native-born guides and a curated network of experts. The company is known for providing exceptional and exclusive insider access (frequently built upon Deborah’s lifelong relationships in Africa), coupled with an extraordinary dedication to making every detail perfect, providing a seamless and uncomplicated experience from the moment clients step off the plane.
With her eye on helping Africa and Africans at all times, Deborah gives back to her homeland through her work with the Girls College of Tourism, The Tracking Academy, and The Imibala School for marginalized children. She has received recognition and awards as one of South Africa’s top 25 entrepreneurs (2015), and the WAA Award for “Rebranding Luxury Travel in Africa” (2014). Under Deb’s visionary leadership, ROAR AFRICA has received numerous awards, including Condé Nast’s 2019 – 30 Most Powerful Women in Travel, Travel & Leisure, Number 2 in the World’s Best Awards (2018), and Condé Nast Traveler’s Top Travel Specialists (2017, 2018, 2019).