Congratulations to all our #SeeHer members, partners and supporters around the U.S. and beyond. The Wall Street Journal just called our movement “the industry standard for identifying and eliminating unconscious bias in advertising and programming.” And we’ve spent the first three months-plus of the New Year doing our best to earn that claim.
The big news of recent note was the fantastic #SeeHer Creative Agency Forum at WME’s New York headquarters last month. More than 100 marketers and ad agency creative leaders attended the event, co-hosted by #SeeHer and ANA chair, #SeeHer member and Procter & Gamble Chief Brand Officer Marc Pritchard. Attendees left the session feeling energized and inspired to create great, bias-free content.
One of the highlights of this amazing afternoon was a fireside chat between Pritchard and award-winning filmmaker Alma Har’el about Free the Bid, her new initiative to increase the number of women directors in advertising. #SeeHer member and AT&T Chief Brand Officer Fiona Carter stepped up and promised to eliminate bias in ALL of her company’s ads by year’s end, and encouraged others to do the same.
We also heard creative superstars from agencies talk about the power of storytelling. Another panel inspired the group on how story can change the world. It featured actress Maysoon Zavid, activist and Survivor competitor Alexis Jones, and fashion model Geena Rocero, biomedical scientist Dr. Knatokie Ford, Uber Chief Brand Officer Bozoma Saint John.
More programs are rolling out in the next couple of months as we gear up for the all-important summer season and the Cannes Festival of Creativity in June. Because we know that context is just as important as content, we are hosting instead a Forum for media agencies this month. And Dr. Ford, who also serves as #SeeHer STEM and Entertainment Engagement Advisor, is putting the final touches on a #SeeHer toolkit for showrunners and TV writers.
More to come next month. In the meantime, leaving you with a bit of inspiration from one of our Creativity Forum attendees, who challenged all of us to “go beyond accurate to inspirational. Seeing is believing. We’ve had too many years of seeing less than we should have. Now we should see more. Normalize equality.”