An Ode to Amazing Women

My great-grandmother Mollye was left-handed like me. Her sister Maude ran away to join the circus, but Mollye worked as a domestic, cleaning houses for wealthy families, and later in a munitions factory in St. Louis. 

Mollye and Maude around 1905

Mollye’s daughter, Alice, was born in 1912, eight years before women could vote. Alice moved across the country with two kids and an eighth-grade education, and bought a house on her own in a time when only men could get mortgages. 

Alice’s younger daughter, Sallye, was the first person in her family to go to college, working summers in a restaurant. Most of her peers became nurses or teachers, but Sallye went to work as a computer programmer for the Department of Agriculture in 1966.

 Me with my Mom and Grandma, 1978 (left). Mollye and I on my first Christmas.

As for me, I’m my ancestors’ wildest dream. 

I just celebrated the 8th anniversary of my PhD dissertation defense at the University of Michigan. 

My “baby,” Southpaw Insights, has grown into a small but mighty team of 6 smart researchers doing great work for clients who trust and rely on our expertise to guide and advise them to make smart decisions. 

Team Southpaw earlier this year.

We are certified as a woman-owned business with the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) and the New York City Office of Minority and Women-owned Business Enterprises (M/WBE), and we’ve done research on women’s health, and women’s issues. I work every day to honor all the women who helped get me here, and I love doing work with women-led organizations.

Are you a female-founder or part of a women-led organization? In honor of International Women’s Day, we’d love to celebrate you and the work you’re doing. Write us back and tell us what you’re up to or what you’re proud of. And, if you’d like, let’s find a time to talk. This year we’re looking to support more women-led businesses, associations, and agencies. We would absolutely love to help you, too.

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