Baltimore

Meet 10 Incredible women leaders from Baltimore

By WOW - Women of the World Foundation

Welcome to Baltimore!

Due to Covid-19, the WOW Baltimore, presented by Women's Leadership Institute of Baltimore at Notre Dame of Maryland University, was cancelled in 2020. 

But that didn’t stop the organisers from their mission to celebrate women and girls, presenting an invigorating and inspiring programme as part of WOW Global 24 - The WOW Foundation’s first ever global online festival in June 2020. 

The women they have brought together for this exhibition are some of the city's most respected, inspiring activists, educators, performers and more. 

Vanessa Geffrard

Vanessa trains and educates adults, parents, and community groups around sexual health topics such as consent and boundaries, sexually transmitted infection prevention, contraceptive methods, teen pregnancy and abortion stigma, healthy relationships, LGBTQ inclusion. 

“In my work, I realize that women, especially Black women, don’t always have a platform to discuss their sexuality and sexual lives. These conversations are either held in private with one other person and shushed from larger society and I want to elevate the message that we're amazing, wonderful, complicated and multi-faceted beings who deserve to be heard and deserve to feel good."

Health: Vanessa Geffrard (2020) by Khamaree "Kham" OwensWOW - Women of the World Foundation

Lisa M. Ferretto

Lisa is a Principal, Architect, and the Sustainability Director at Hord Coplan Macht where she consults on many projects across all studios and promotes the integration of sustainability and well-being throughout the entire design process. Lisa describes herself as an “urban scientist” studying the interconnected systems of people with each other, nature, and cities.

"In Architecture, we also need to connect the dots - from race to place, people to planet, COVID to climate. We cannot solve one crisis to inform the other, but need to respond simultaneously with a road to recovery, prevention and resilience.”

Climate Change: Lisa M. Ferretto (2020) by Khamaree "Kham" OwensWOW - Women of the World Foundation

Raquel M Fry

Raquel is passionate about narrowing the gender gap when it comes to financial literacy and believes that every girl should feel financially empowered. Raquel lives in Baltimore with her husband and two young kids (both of whom have already started an “investment” piggy bank). 

"For women globally, financial literacy and economic empowerment are critical to ensuring their economic security and that of their family. I am passionate about empowering women and girls through community outreach and training centered on financial education."

Finance and Economy: Raquel M. Frye (2020) by Khamaree "Kham" OwensWOW - Women of the World Foundation

Jasmine Norton

A native of Baltimore, MD chef Jasmine is the audacious visionary behind the first female Black owned oyster bar in the U.S. With no working capital she built her following starting in farmer’s markets and festivals in 2017 and later opened her first brick and mortar in 2019. 

"Well before my time, the food industry has always been a man’s world when in fact women were the pulse of the kitchen and how men learned to cook. Culinary art is a true expression of nurturing and comfort one trait in which women possess innately."

Cultural Life, Arts and Expression: Jasmine Norton (2020) by Khamaree "Kham" OwensWOW - Women of the World Foundation

Keira Mull

Keira Mull is a recent biology graduate from Notre Dame of Maryland University. While there, she was a strong student leader through her roles as a resident assistant and tutor. Keira organized several events that empowered her peers such as the annual self-defense seminar. 

“There continues to be an evident gender gap in leadership and political participation around the world. Even when women outnumber men (i.e. America), female representation in government offices is not proportionate."

Leadership, Power and Politics: Keira Mull (2020) by Khamaree "Kham" OwensWOW - Women of the World Foundation

Marilyn Mosby

Marilyn J. Mosby is the 25th State’s Attorney for Baltimore City. She was the youngest chief prosecutor of any major American city at the time of her election in 2015. She is married to Baltimore City Council President Nick J. Mosby. They reside in West Baltimore and are the proud parents of two beautiful daughters.

"Legal warriors unafraid to fight for justice, pushing progressive policies to undo the blight of mass incarceration and racial inequity disproportionately imposed on communities of color."

Peace and Justice: Marilyn Mosby (2020) by Khamaree "Kham" OwensWOW - Women of the World Foundation

Khalilah Harris

During her time with the Obama administration, Dr. Harris was responsible for the first ever White House Summit on Diversity and Inclusion in Government, along with the first ever #BlackWomenLead gathering at the US Department of Education hosting 150 Black women and girls of all ages from across the country to discuss advancing women's issues with support of civic organizations.

"We know education can take many forms, and it is critical we do the work to make access to education a human right. Each day I work to make this a reality and am encouraged by those who stand shoulder to shoulder to expand access to educational opportunity. "

Education: Dr Khalilah Harris (2020) by Khamaree "Kham" OwensWOW - Women of the World Foundation

Louise Senft

 Louise Phipps Senftbuilds bridges wherever they are needed: between people, different philosophies, and conflicting needs. She empowers the innate capacity of each human being, even through moments of conflict or crisis.

“Conflict around social justice occurs because people don’t take time to hear what those on the opposite side are saying – we have to recognise that each of us is molded and influenced by our personal experiences. Conflict usually arises when discussing diversity because the framing around the issues is usually divisive unto itself. "

Conflict: Louise Senft (2020) by Khamaree "Kham" OwensWOW - Women of the World Foundation

Tonee Lawson

Tonee was featured on “In Real Life” on the Quicksilva Show for her impact on the community; and was recognized by the Daily Record as a Very Important Professional Under 40. She is a 2018-2019 Johns Hopkins University Social Innovation alum and 2020 Baltimore Corps Fellow where she developed a virtual reality curriculum for social emotional learning in youth.

"Our youth take a firsthand account and bear witness to years of injustices. They feel hopeless. They feel unheard. I have made it my personal mission to ensure that does not continue. Women have historically been at the forefront of justice movements."

Identity: Tonee Lawson (2020) by Khamaree "Kham" OwensWOW - Women of the World Foundation

Dr. Kaye

Dr. Karsonya “Kaye” Wise Whitehead is Associate Professor of Communication and African and African American Studies at Loyola University Maryland; the Founding Director of The Karson Institute for Race, Peace, & Social Justice; and, the host of the radio show, Today With Dr. Kaye on WEAA.

She is a K-12 master teacher in African American History; an award-winning curriculum writer and lesson plan developer; and, an award- winning former Baltimore City middle school teacher.

Dr Kaye

"I know that America is not my home. Home is where you feel safe and where you belong. It is a place where my sons could walk free without fear or trepidation. They are Sankofa birds who are learning how to fly forward across this red, white, and blue landscape with rivers that run deep with the blood of innocent black and brown people while hopelessly keeping their heads turned in search of somewhere else."

Domestic Life: Dr Kaye (2020) by Khamaree "Kham" OwensWOW - Women of the World Foundation

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