Crain’s New York Business published their 2019 list of Most Powerful Women in New York this past June. The list recognizes 50 prominent business and civic leaders that have made a positive impact on the city’s culture and economic growth to date.
In celebration of that list, Crain’s hosted a luncheon on Tuesday complete with an honoree panel discussion to an audience of over 600 professional and diverse women (and men) at Cipriani’s midtown landmark venue. The event also provided gracious networking opportunities with distinguished professionals across all sectors.
Moderated by Associate Editor of Crain’s New York Business, Christin Dare-Bryan, the panel discussion included honorees -LaRay Brown (CEO of One Brooklyn Health Center), Mary Callahan Erdoes (CEO of Asset and Wealth and Wealth Management, JPMorgan Chase & Co.), New York State Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (Temporary President & Majority leader 35th Senate District) and Mary Ann Tighe, CEO New York Tri-State Region CBRE. This panel of powerful women shared wisdom they have acquired while navigating their careers to the powerful positions they hold in business and government today.
At opening, Managing Editor, Brendan O’Connor noted that the Crain’s Most Powerful Women in New York list was once titled “Crain’s Most Influential Women in New York”. This upgrade certainly reflects the direction in which society is moving for professional women. Christin Dare-Bryan, maintains the focus on “power’ by asking the panel “How do you define Power?”.
Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins advises- “You must recognize your power. Know who you are. Know why you got there. Power comes from within. Someone will always try to take your power because they think you should not be where you are.” Senator Stewart-Cousins statement, of course, applies to any woman or man. However, how many women do believe in the innate power we have to be leaders and entrepreneurs- especially in male-dominated sectors? Society is advancing and it is evident that for women leaders our merit and power will get us a seat at the table. Any challenge to that is simply an opinion. Better yet, if the seat is not offered, know that we have the power to make our own table.
Women are reluctant to acknowledge that they have power. You must be comfortable with having power.Mary Ann Tighe, CEO CBRE
Mary Ann Tighe adds her insightful response to the conversation about power. “Women are reluctant to acknowledge that they have power. You must be comfortable with having power”. Her statement carries a lot of weight for women in many STEM related sectors. We are undoubtedly comfortable with our intellectual abilities, but are we comfortable when presented with leadership opportunities? Our corporate, and even family environments greatly influence our confidence in our own leadership abilities. The good news is that as we become more aware of the necessary ingredients to running a successful enterprise- leadership training, mentorship, valuable networks -we will become more comfortable with honing the power that we already possess.
The panel discussion, set in front of 5 dozen or so tables occupied by New York’s most enterprising women and men, also covered questions about career challenges, mentorship and influences. If the goal of this luncheon was to celebrate, inspire and empower, then hit it’s mark it did indeed. Looking forward to seeing even more peers on next year’s Crain’s Most Powerful Women in New York list.