Tuesday, November 9, 2010



November 20, 2010 – In eight countries around the globe, hundreds of established women
leaders will be matched with young professionals to engage in dialogue as they walk through
neighborhoods and city streets to discuss their challenges and goals for the future.
This series of events, Vital Voices’ Global Women’s Mentoring Walk Initiative, builds on the
success of pilot mentoring walks hosted across Eurasia, Latin America, North Africa and Sub‐
Saharan Africa in 2008 and 2009. The mentoring walks originated as a direct outcome of the
FORTUNE/U.S. State Department Global Women Leaders Mentoring Partnership in collaboration
with Vital Voices.
The annual public‐private partnership brings international businesswomen to the United States
for leadership and skills training, networking and a three‐week mentorship with one of
FORTUNE’s most powerful women executives. The concept for the initiative derives from
American media icon, Founder and former CEO of Oxygen Media, Geraldine Laybourne, who
launched mentoring walks to empower young women professionals in New York City and across
the United States. Attributing much of her own success in the American entertainment industry
to mentoring, Ms. Laybourne stated: “Why is it that so many of us did well? Because we had a
mentoring outlook. We helped each other along.”
Dedicated members of the Vital Voices Global Leadership Network will invest in the next
generation of women’s leadership by organizing mentoring walk events in Argentina, Ecuador,
Egypt, Ghana, Indonesia, Nigeria, Serbia, Swaziland and Uganda. Each walk is organized by
women leaders locally and tailored to fit the particular needs of each locale. Vital Voices staff
will have a presence at several mentoring walk events and Geraldine Laybourne will participate
as a featured guest in Argentina. Together, the walks underscore the value of women’s
leadership and exemplify the transformative impact women have when they act in solidarity to
promote positive change.
For more information, contact Vital Voices Global Programs Manager, Alyson Wise, by phone at
(212) 998‐7555 or by email at alysonwise@vitalvoices.org.
Vital Voices Global Partnership
Vital Voices Global Partnership is the preeminent non‐governmental organization (NGO) that
identifies, trains and empowers emerging women leaders and social entrepreneurs around the
globe, enabling them to create a better world for us all. Its international staff and team of over
1,000 partners, pro bono experts and leaders, including senior government, corporate and NGO
executives, have trained and mentored more than 8,000 emerging women leaders from over
127 countries in Asia, Africa, Eurasia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and the Middle East
since 1997. These women have returned home to train and mentor more than 500,000
additional women and girls in their communities. Vital Voices’ mission is to identify, invest in
and bring visibility to extraordinary women around the world by unleashing their leadership
potential to transform lives and accelerate peace and prosperity in their communities.
FORTUNE/U.S. State Department Global Women's Mentoring Partnership
Since 2006, the U.S. State Department, FORTUNE Most Powerful Women's Summit and Vital
Voices have annually engaged in a public‐private partnership to provide international emerging
women leaders in business the opportunity to develop their leadership, management and
business skills through the FORTUNE/U.S. State Department Global Women's Mentoring
Partnership. This unique program combines the leadership, business and communication
training with networking and professional development and a working mentorship program that
enables emerging women business leaders around the globe to spend a month in the U.S. to
enhance their capabilities and propel their careers forward. Top American female executives —
FORTUNE's Most Powerful Women — mentor these emerging leaders to support them in their
professional growth.