Founder of White House Project to deliver Extraordinary Women Lecture Oct. 13

AUBURN – Marie Wilson, founder and president emeritus of the White House Project, will speak Thursday, Oct. 13, at 2 p.m. in a free public event at Auburn University’s Telfair Peet Theatre. Wilson is also an author and co-creator of Take Our Daughters to Work Day and President Barbie. Wilson’s talk, “Add Women, CHANGE Everything,” will be followed immediately by a networking reception during which the audience is invited to meet Wilson and last year’s Extraordinary Woman, Lilly Ledbetter, who will make a special guest appearance.

The current economic, social and environmental challenges the nation faces cause many to wonder if there is a leadership void, says Wilson, an innovator and change-maker who has more than 25 years of experience at the forefront of transforming American leadership culture. She adds that facing this void means bringing more women to the table so that their voices can be heard along with those of men.

Wilson says that although many people believe that women have reached parity in leadership roles, research published by the White House Project shows that women represent only 18 percent of leaders in many fields, including business and politics. Raising the number of women leaders “means the work of running the planet will be easier and better for all,” according to Wilson.

“The core of what women bring to leadership – a tendency toward greater inclusiveness, empathy and communication – makes stronger government and richer businesses,” she said.

At the White House Project, Wilson initiated research such as “Benchmarking Women’s Leadership,” created, a database with more than 330 women experts and coordinated national leadership summits and the “Vote, Run, Lead” program that has given more than 9,000 women the tools they need to run for office. Wilson is a regular contributor to The Washington Post and NPR and has appeared on The Today Show, Good Morning America and CNN.

Sponsored by the Women’s Leadership Institute in the College of Liberal Arts at Auburn University, the Extraordinary Women Lecture provides an opportunity to meet and interact with leaders whose accomplishments speak to the ability of women to achieve success in any arena they choose.

For more information, contact Barbara Baker, executive director of the Women’s Leadership Institute, at (334) 844-2491, or go to

(Contributed by Victoria Santos.)

Contact: Barbara Baker, (334) 844-2491 (, or
Mike Clardy, (334) 844-9999 (