Page 1

April 2016

Monthly Newsletter of the Professional Women’s Association of Rome

The curious optimist

PWA is an international hub in the heart of Rome where ideas and values, tradition and innovation, diversity, culture and professionalism meet and intersect. On our journey into the future our travel companions are respect, ethics, and a sense of social responsibility.

Make your mark

Have you ever dreamed of truly making your mark? Writing an international best-seller, leading a group of relentless women in a fierce social battle or inventing some fabulous new cure that made you famous? I bet many of us have had such fantasies. This month's The People We Are is a tribute to several bold, fearless and intelligent women who have paved the path in their field and truly made a difference. Lisa Tucci presents a dozen Italian women who have made "herstory" with their remarkable achievements. You can also read about Zaha Hadid, the late world-famous architect, Jennifer Doudna, the inventer of the revolutionary Crispr-Cas9 gene-editor and many other women all over the globe who are leaving an important heritage. Our conference speaker, Carolyn Smyth, will portray some of the women in the Early Modern Rome who inspired then and continue to do so now with their art. All these women are great examples of the worldwide "matronage" we are fortunate to admire. But it is not necessary to be world-famous to make a difference. We can leave a positive and lasting heritage at a local or even familiar level. We can contribute to the well-being of our community, friends and families by helping, donating and being a positive change force. We can be remembered for the little, friendly actions we did that warmed hearts near and far. Another great opportunity to make a difference is to be active in an association. PWA is building a new Board of Directors and Communications, Facilitation, Operations Teams. There are several positions that YOU might be perfect to cover. Would you like to participate and be a leader or team-member on our common journey into the future? Be brave and make your mark now, Hanna


Hanna Suni editor and layout designer www.hamedesign.com newslettereditor@pwarome.org

in this issue

4 The Matronage of Culture: Women of Art in Early Modern Rome 6 Italian Women Making Their Mark

8 Member Spotlight: Monica Sorcetti, the Curious Optimist

10 PWA Board Elections 2016-17: Do You Have What It Takes? 12 Running for the Board

14 March Wrap-up: Choose Your Plate

15 Urban Lawnmover ConneXion at Prati Urbani 16 Women and Words 17

My ICF National Conference experience – increased awareness and growth

18 Cultural Corner: Thank You, Zaha! 20

Health in Our Hands: Jennifer Doudna – The Promise and Peril of Gene Editing

21 Let's Go Social: The Top 20 Women Social Media Influencers


8 18


20 3

PWA APRIL Conference

The activity of women in producing the Renaissance and Baroque art and architecture in the Renaissance we see around us in Rome – not to mention that which has been lost – was enormous. Art historians have begun to investigate their contributions, or the stamp they impressed more subtly, on the visible fabric of the city. I begin with Lavinia Fontana’s Minerva Dressing Herself in the Galleria Borghese – not because it is typical, but because it is rare for our topic – a painting of a woman by a woman, with all its pride and paradoxes. There were few active women artists who contributed to 16-18C Rome – but there were many intelligent and wealthy women who sponsored art, often through their spiritual desires and personal religious interests, or through their repressed intellectual capacities which could only find release in cultural-religious “patronage”. Vittoria Colonna was one of the former; the women who worked to develop the nunneries of the Quirinale during its sensational real-estate boom were among the latter. This informal lecture will be merely an introduction to some of the most interesting women of art in Early Modern Rome – a hint of their influence in a very male-dominated society.


Carolyn Smyth graduated from Vassar College (1976) and took her advanced degrees (MA 1980, Ph.D. 1988) in Philadelphia, at the University of Pennsylvania. In her career as a student, she developed her interests in, specifically, the Italian Cinquecento, and more generally, French 19C painting, modern art and art historical theory. Her publications and research cover diverse topics in Early Modern Italian art: particularly Northern Italian religious art by Correggio, il Pordenone, and Titian; and the imagery of Purgatory in the 1517C (including, for current research, a study of the 17C church of the Confraternity of the Souls in Purgatory “ad Arca” in Naples). Currently on Sabbatical, she is investigating Titian’s portrait of the toddler Clarissa Strozzi, in the context of: Florentine exiles in Venice, concepts of childhood health and education, and the inception of the imagery of noble children in Renaissance Europe. Professor Smyth has taught at John Cabot University since 1997. She is Professor of Art History, teaching courses on topics from the Middle Ages to the Modern Age, with an emphasis on painting, iconography, church history and theology, and art historical theory from the 18C to contemporary writers.

Main Sponsors


www.powersavesolutions.it 5

By Lisa Tucci www.artemediacomm.com

Anyone who, over the years, has been to President Valerie Baxter’s Footloose outings or International Women’s Day cultural events, has truly had some golden opportunities to learn about some of the women who made Italy great. We have spent time with historians who have regaled us with stories of Lucrezia Borgia or Isabella D’Este, and we know that women played a tremendous role in the many wars for independence, the world wars, and beyond. And although most Italians can name only a single woman in modern history of influence, (the centenarian Dr Rita Levi-Montalcini), Italy’s women have – despite their misguided status as second class citizens, starlets or Signore in charge of only the home – have proven this concept wrong time and again. It was an Italian – Maria Montessori – who revolutionized education as we know it, an issue close to my heart with our Quantum Learning SuperCamp brainstretching techniques. Journalist Oriana Fallaci ruffled the feathers of world leaders and local citizens alike with her ‘take no prisoners’ reporting. During WWII, as a teen, she would carry food in her bike basket to the resistance. And of course, women in fashion - from the Fendi sisters to the House of Missoni to Donatella Versace are not only visionaries, but able multinational managers who keep the Made in Italy brand alive.

One of the first books I ever read when coming of age was the biography of Marisa Bellisario, at the time (1981), she was President of Olivetti computer and tech multinational. Her foundation still today produces a Prize, Donne ad Alta Quota Women Flying High now 26 years and counting.


There are Women who Run with the Wolves, Clarissa Pinkola Estes’s tremendous opus, but then there are the women who ran Rome like Shewolves. Pauline Borghese held court at Villa Borghese, while the Mistress of the Vatican book shines the spotlight on Olimpia Maidalchini Pamphilj, the forebear of the Doria Pamphilj dynasty. One of Rome’s best kept secrets in broad daylight, pay a visit to the home of the family, Galleria Doria Pamphilj, situated right at the top of Via del Corso, to hear about her and her family’s patronage of the arts and acumen through an outstanding audio guide, narrated by Jonathan Doria Pamphilj. Today, Italy’s women have reached for the stars (@AstroSam) and particle physicist Fabiola Gianotti has been named Director-General of the European Organization for Nuclear Research. They continue to excel in sports from fencing (check out our stars in Rio!), skiing, volleyball and tennis, with Roberta Vinci stunning all last September when she dethroned Serena Williams. Her rival, Flavia Pennetta, also from Taranto, Italy’s deep south, makes all of Italy proud.

So while Italy’s mainstream media still – incredibly – produce Manels (male-only panels) and cover after cover of strong-jawed and cross-armed businessmen, Italy’s women continue – as they always have – excelling in almost every single field they put their hearts and their minds to. Inspiring peers and future generations by their examples. The ever-popular Pizza Margherita (simple cheese & tomato) is served up by the millions each and every day. It was named after Italy's beloved Queen Margherita.


The curious optimist by Hanna Suni www.hamedesign.com


hen life gives you lemons, make lemonade. Most of us are ready to give up in front of difficulties, but Monica Sorcetti has certainly made good use of this piece of advice. Several times she has seen the walls of her world crumble down, but she turned the hardships into opportunities. At 60, after a 40-year career in pharmaceuticals, she opened a guest house in Rome, became a blogger and pharmaceutical consultant, and studies web design. «It is all thanks to my curiosity which is endless», Monica reveals.


Monica gives the interview at her colorful Rainbow House, an apartment in Via Aureliana in the center of Rome. Inaugurated only one month ago, the vacation home has already seen its first guests enjoying her hospitality and new bookings are coming in. Normally on a Wednesday morning Monica would be attending a course of web design at SWEB with a group of young students, but today there is a break in the program. «Who would have thought that at my age I would be inaugurating new initiatives and studying again», Monica giggles. Monica grew up in Rome, her beloved metropolis and Caput Mundi, in the Nomentano area. After liceo classico she chose to study pharmaceuticals at Rome’s La Sapienza University, following in her older sister's footsteps. It wasn’t the true passion of a humanist young woman, but as a diligent and persevering student, she graduated at 22 and started working in a local pharmacy.

She got married a few years later and when her daughter, Sara, was born, she decided to stay home and dedicate herself to the baby. Riccardo was born 4 years later and the family was complete. «Everything was perfect, until my son fell ill and was diagnosed with a cerebral tumor. He died at the age of 3, after an agonizing period at the hospital». At first Monica fell into depression and could not function in her daily routines, let alone work. However, peer support at Bambin Gesù was very strong and together with a group of other courageous and determined mothers, Monica founded Associazione Peter Pan, a non-profit organization to support cancer-stricken children and their families. Today the association boasts a full agenda of yearly activities, three reception facilities in Rome and thousands of supporters all over Italy. Monica’s salvation was also the birth of her second son, Francesco. Through her work, family and Peter Pan friends she found a sparkle of light again. She worked in several different pharmacies, traveled in Italy and abroad and watched her two children grow up to adulthood. A year ago, another set of hardships hit her. The pharmacy where she had worked for long decided to downsize its staff, and after 38 career years, Monica found herself without a job. In the current economical situation, at her age it wasn’t easy to find a new position. As if that wasn’t enough, Monica broke a vertebra in a silly household accident at her beach house. She was forced to wear a rigid bust and avoid any kind of physical strain for a few months. Without a job and unable to move, Monica had a lot of free time on her hands. She started surfing the internet for some new ideas and a few wellness blogs caught her eye. She came up with an idea of a blog of her own. «What I missed the most from my career years was the contact with my clients, the feeling of being able to help and support them. Often though, there is not much time or privacy to truly answer the customers’ questions in a pharmacy setting. So I thought of starting an online platform where people could contact me for all kinds of health-related

advice», Monica explains. She started her blog, Chiedialladottoressa.com, in October 2015. In just a few months she has gained a steady audience and several collaborators who contribute with articles and even pharmaceutical companies that support her. Another little setback came in perfectly this past autumn. Monica owns an apartment in the center of Rome and the family who was renting it for years decided to move out. Monica came up with an idea; starting a vacation house where to host guests, but also events related to her new blog. This way she could build synergy for the two new initiatives holiday house and her blog - through Da donna a donna, a project she wanted to launch. It is meant to support women through articles, discussions, events and peer support on many aspects of life, health, well-being and family. Rainbow House was inaugurated in March 2016. So far, Monica has organized evenings with a nutritionist, fashion-stylist and psychologist and there are tons of other ideas for events. Her vast network of professionals is pleased to collaborate with her. «This gives me a great opportunity to learn more myself and satisfy my curiosity», Monica says. It was precisely her curiosity that led Monica to PWA. She was googling for local networking events and came across the website of the association. She attended a ConneXion in September 2014 and immediately became a regular member who hasn’t missed one event in two years. Last year she was candidate for Woman of the Year and her friendly and warm presence has conquered everyone. «Through PWA I have gotten to know dozens of like-minded professional women with whom I have the chance to spend time with and grow. Every conference leaves me with new ideas and I love to meet old friends and new acquaintances at the ConneXions», Monica says. The PWA spirit has given Monica the strength and courage to face new challenges and invent opportunities she didn’t even dream of a few years ago. Monica was also among the first members to join the TimeOut project. «I feel very supported and special at PWA, unlike any other association I’ve ever belonged to.»


PWA BOARD ELECTIONS 2016/17 do you have what it takes? by Valerie Baxter President The perks of leadership in a nonprofit association can be appealing: the respect of a productive team, maybe even the lure of an executive title! But leadership also comes with responsibility, pressure and a lot of hard work. PWA sets high expectations, but we as board members "walk the talk" to demonstrate the standards that we expect. Our collective behaviour is a model of integrity and fairness. In PWA we: • • • • •

set clear goals encourage others provide support and recognition stir the emotions of people get people to look beyond their selfinterest • inspire people to reach for the improbable Our vision sets out our organization's purpose. As a Board member, you can develop this, partly by understanding the values of the people with whom you come into contact, partly by understanding the capabilities of fellow members and the resources of our organization. And also by conducting an intelligent analysis of your environment, and selecting the best way forward within it. How? Motivate People to Buy Into and Deliver the Vision Now, ready for next season starting with our mission statement you can appeal to members’ values, and inspire them with where you're going to lead them, and why. Help people appreciate the positive impact of your vision on the people you're trying to help. Then, talk about how your vision is shared by PWA. Link it to other people's goals to give it context, and help people see how they can contribute to it.


Manage Delivery of the Vision A vision is no use on its own: it needs to become reality. To manage the delivery of our vision, you'll need to combine effective project management with sensitive change management. This will help you deliver the changes needed with the full support of our members. Every Board and Team member should fully understand what they're responsible for, and know how success is measured. There are some short-term goals that will help you to achieve quick wins and stay motivated. Yet short-term achievement is also linked to our longer-term goals. This is why members are encouraged to serve more than one term in their Board position. You may need to build your self-discipline and stamina, so that you don't let yourself down. And, set a good example to your team – especially if they're affected by delays or difficulties – by being a model of hard work and persistence. Also, stay visible by being present among members, because it helps you stay connected with daily activities, and allows you to answer questions as they arise. If you feel you can identify with the leadership role described above and are ready to accept the challenge, we welcome your candidature. Although all Board positions are open to our members as potential candidates for election, in particular there are vacancies for a new Secretary, Treasurer, Social Director and Sponsorship director. Among Team members, positions are open for: Community director (social media), Media consultants, Newsletter consultant, Legal advisor. Applications for Team positions, although not subject to election, are still considered skill-based. To assist you in your role as part of our Board/ Team, you may appreciate an opportunity to avail yourselves of specific training and team coaching sessions.

make a difference

get involved

HAVE YOU CHOSEN ALREADY? ▶ get to know the candidates ▶ voice your opinion ▶ be a candidate

PWA Elections 2016-17 on May 18, 2016 at 19.00 at Hotel Aleph



During the AGM - Annual General Meeting and following the Conference, Elections will be conducted for the renewal of the Board, by use of voting papers cast in a ballot box on the Election desk. That same evening, at closure of the poll, the Election Committee will count the votes. The Election Committee will send an email to those absent with the link and indications for access to the platform, where it will be possible to vote anonymously, from 10.00 hrs until 21.00 hrs on 18th May. At closure of the online session the Election Committee will count the votes and give immediate communication to the present Board of the final results.

In occasione dell’Assemblea Generale Elettiva e della Conference, a seguire della stessa, si apriranno le votazioni per il rinnovamento del Comitato Esecutivo. Per le votazioni del giorno 18 maggio ci sarà un’urna elettorale sull’Election desk, utilizzando le schede per il voto. Nella stessa sera, al termine delle votazioni, il Comitato Elettorale procederà allo spoglio delle schede.

WOMAN OF THE YEAR 2015/16 A similar procedure will be adopted for the election of Woman of the Year, by use of ballot papers cast in a separate ballot box on the Election desk. The WOTY Committee will send an email to those absent with the link and indications for access to the platform, from the afternoon of 18th May until 22.00 hrs on 19th May. At closure of the online session, the votes will be counted to determine the Woman of the Year. The results will be announced at our Summer Party on 15th June 2016.

Il Comitato Elettorale provvederà ad inviare una mail con il link e le indicazioni per gli accessi alla piattaforma, dove sarà possibile votare, in forma anonima, a partire dalle ore 10 del giorno successivo fino alle ore 21. Alla chiusura della sessione on line il Comitato Elettorale procederà con lo spoglio delle schede per dare immediata comunicazione all’attuale Comitato Esecutivo dei risultati definitivi delle votazioni delle due giornate. WOMAN OF THE YEAR 2015/16 In occasione della Conference, a seguire della stessa, si apriranno le votazioni per la Woman of the Year 2015/16. Per le votazioni del giorno 18 maggio ci sarà un’urna elettorale sull’Election desk, utilizzando le schede per il voto. Nella stessa sera, al termine delle votazioni, si procederà allo spoglio delle schede. Il Comitato WOTY provvederà ad inviare una mail con il link e le indicazioni per gli accessi alla piattaforma, dove sarà possibile votare a partire dal pomeriggio del giorno successivo (21 maggio) e fino alle 22.00 del 22 Maggio 2015. Alla chiusura della sessione online si procederà con lo spoglio delle schede per l’elezione della Woman of the Year che verrà annunciata durante il Summer Party del 15 giugno 2016.


Running for the Board Candidate for President – Valerie Baxter I am a British expat with considerable professional experience in both international corporate and entrepreneurial environments. I aim to continue fostering innovative projects which commenced in 2014 with “the People We Are” emphasizing PWA brand experience. By redesigning PWA leadership & communication in 2015/16 with a strong team in “Collective Leadership” we’ve now achieved a series of new concepts in nonprofit Governance together with initiatives in social responsibility. In 2016/17 I plan to dedicate myself to raising awareness on economic and financial aspects of gender equality and the expansion of PWA beyond the Rome environment.

Values: Honesty – Reliability – Professionalism

Candidate for Vice President – Michela Lazzè I am Italian; I alternately work as the Manager of my family country relais and as a certified English language teacher. As Special Projects Director and Thinktank Leader I have helped the team with the start and first implementation of the Collective Leadership project, "the People We Are" and I have structured and paved the way for Timeout. I wish to keep working closely with the President, the Board of Directors and the Team as a coordinator and a connector to fulfil members' request for quality, empowerment and internationalization.

Values: Truth-seeking – Faith – Balance

Candidate for Membership Director – Adriana Tempesta I am an Italian Civil Lawyer, and I run my own firm in Ferrara and in Rome. I am specialized in Consumers Law but I do practice all aspects of civil law . I live in Rome, where I truly enjoy the beauty of the city and its multicultural opportunities, with my husband and two children (16 and 6). I propose myself as Membership Director because I believe in PWA and its capability of connecting people, activities and ideas and, thanks to my open and talkative character, I think that I will be able to involve more and more in the life of our Association both members and non-members.

Values: Reliability – Outgoingness – Organization


Candidate for Programming Director – Christine Sterpetti I am American and have a degree in Economics and Sociology from San Jose State University in California. I worked in the Silicon Valley, the heart of technology in California, for several years. I moved to Italy in 1998 and worked in sales for an informatics company travelling throughout Europe. I now work as a cross cultural trainer, am a certified PCM (Process Communication Model) trainer and I represent a beautifully hand crafted line of jewellery from Milan; and translate from English to Italian. I strongly believe in the power of women and helping each other succeed. For this reason I joined PWA and continue to contribute my professional and communication skills to the inner workings of the organization.

Values: Honesty – Open-mindedness – communicating

Candidate for PR Director – Marta Schneider Born and raised in Brazil, European parents, with a BA Hons degree in Languages and Master in Marketing in Argentina, I have lived, studied and worked in 3 continents (South America, Africa, Europe). My language and marketing abilities led me into merging my passion for travels and teaching with my professional life. I am the founder of and run “The African Queen” a tour operator specialized in safaris to Africa; more recently I have created “The Jungle Queen” for journeys into exotic South America and “The Gladiatress” for a lighter way of visiting Rome. One of my hobbies is to teach foreign languages, often as a volunteer in Brazil and Kenya. I am passionate about animals and work as a volunteer for their well-being and preservation. I am a keen jogger and horsewoman, enjoy dancing and art. I joined PWA 8 years ago in search of opportunities to interact with other professional women and expand her businesses.

Values: Justice – Unconventionality – Resiliance

Candidate for Newsletter Editor – Hanna Suni I am a Finnish graphic designer specialized in print and editorial design (magazines, books, catalogs, brochures). I also do web and interior design. In 2015-16 I turned the PWA Newsletter into The People We Are, a colorful and informational online magazine that has reached great readership numbers and lots of positive feedback. I was also on the team that redesigned the PWA website and I've created logos for TimeOut and IWD projects. In 2016-17 I would like to develop The People We Are even further and continue to put the full array of my design skills to the service of the association.

Values: Enthusiasm – Efficiency – Open-mindedness

If you'd like to run for a Board Position contact electioncommittee@pwarome.org 13

Choose your plate: March Conference on Nutrition

By Lisa R Tucci www.artemediacomm.com

One of my favorite movies of all time, Defending Your Life, has Meryl Streep - in a sort of rest stop before entering heaven’s pearly gates exclaiming (more than once), “Isn’t this place great? You can eat anything and everything you want, and you can’t get fat!” And while the brilliant Albert Brooks’ character didn’t quite connect as he watched her stuff her face, I don’t think there isn’t a person on the planet whose idea of heaven would be just that.

And so it was that our March conference, featuring the outstanding and passionate nutritionist, Dr. Sara Farnetti blew me away - and most likely everyone else - when we learned we could eat fried foods and cap it all off with some fine, dark chocolate, and still consider it healthy eating. Wow. This was going to be good. Dr. Farnetti ran down a litany of foods and preparation methods that would make any grown chef cry. We learned that the little crust that forms when you fry a potato actually keeps the bad stuff out. In the oven, you’re inviting a party of miscreants. Microwaving really isn’t what it’s cracked up to be (and I for one never did buy into it), because those waves destroy the nutrients therein - which is the whole point of the meal (or is it??). And dark chocolate is brain food and the food of love. There just had to be a downside. All those sugars. Researchers, dieticians and food bloggers alike all agree that sugar is now our mortal enemy. It does things to your body, your metabolism, your brain, that we really do not want to really know about. And worse yet, it comes in all shapes and sizes: fruits, carbs, sugar, and (sob!) wine. Cut down on these things, and the marvellous machine that is your body will go into overdrive (so there was an upside after all). I am already following Dr. Farnetti's advice through her Facebook page, but now… she needs to come up with an app – the one that makes Italy’s heavenly Gelaterias disappear when you walk by them.


Urban Lawnmover ConneXion In tune with this year's Changing our behavior theme, Social Director Isabella Cattan has proposed some really cool, new locations for our monthly ConneXions. Based on my informal survey (and the happy faces I saw), Prati Urbani pleased ConneXion participants for its modern, yet cosy, ambiance and original and delicious food. Caponatina al bicchiere and the other prelibatezze slid down beautifully with the fresh, green smoothy I really enjoyed. TimeOut project coordinators Alessandro Antibo, Rossana Scazzocchio and Alexandra White have started a monthly newsletter inviting us all to their aperitifs. Stay tuned for both! photos and story by Hanna Suni www.hamedesign.com


Women and Words


"In silenzio l'anima nascosta si nutre del dolore e ciò che dentro muore fluisce lentamente in rivoli di lacrime... striature che solcano il tuo volto e come lame sottili imprimono quel sogno indelebile. Colore che si scioglie portando via con sè l' ombra di quel sorriso... la luce di quella intensa felicità il velo di quella effimera illusione"

poem by Elvira La Rocca painting by Rosanna Chiani

My ICF National Conference experience – increased awareness and growth This April, in Rome's historical CONI building, ICF Italia held their XIII National Conference “Integrazioni generative come leva del Coaching". Two full days dedicated to inclusion and coaching’s 360°-point-ofview, through the experiences of champion athletes, teachers, visionary entrepreneurs, “normal” people, and much much more. Attendees and speakers from Italy and abroad together built an awesome experience for the community that energized all those present! I am grateful to have been invited to be a part of this highly energizing two-day event! Thank you Luisa La Via and Maria Banks. Not only did I get to meet and greet with “old friends” but also I had the unique opportunity to make special new acquaintances. The universe works in wonderful ways and during this weekend I was impressed with the speed of being on the receiving end once again of “the magic.” One of my conference gems was seeing Tim Gallwey and the inner game at work! The other was knowing that PWA was present, through coaches Luisa La Via and Maria Banks. It was a proud moment to see what we women can offer to the community and how this benefit is positively tangible in a short period of time. Here are four of the messages I took away with me: Change is possible when you do what you love, what you feel vitally important to you; Changing the focus changes the outcome; I am as healthy as I allow my body to be; and Question your beliefs and make sure they resonate with who you really are… today. Totally Awesome! Thank you to all the participants/speakers and especially Giovanna Giuffredi and her organizing committee for setting the stage for such an inspiring experience.

Michelle Bassanesi

PWA Mentoring Coordinator

Would you like to lead the PWA Team at the Susan Komen Race for the Cure on Sunday, May 15th, 2016? Contact social@pwarome.org 17


By Laura Rizzi www.laltraroma.net I dedicate “The Cultural Corner” this month as a heartfelt tribute to architect Zaha Hadid, who died suddenly of a heart attack in Miami on March 31st. Discussing Zaha’s life and works also brings an opportunity to focus on women in architecture in 2016. Sabina Santos in her article, Women in Architecture's 2016 Survey Finds Widened Gender Disparities (29 February, 2016) explained the results of the fifth such survey conducted by the Architectural Review. Based on input from interviews of over 1000 women architects worldwide, only “One out of five women responding to the survey said that they would not encourage a woman to start a career in architecture”. Why is this the case, in 2016, that the field of Architecture is (still) a “man’s world”? The survey revealed sexual discrimination, harassment, bullying and victimization in the profession experienced by 72% of the interviewees; inequalities in pay between men and women and many difficulties in balance of work life and children. In fact, 75% of respondees were childless. The American Institute of Architects (AIA), founded in 1907, only in 2014 decided to award posthumously a Gold Medal to Julia Morgan (1872-1957) “…Whose extensive body of work has served as an inspiration to a generation of female architects”. A trailblazer in her profession, she was the first woman architect in California, designing over 700 buildings in a span of 50 years! After Julia, the second woman to win the coveted AIA prize is Denise Scott-Brown. She was passed over for the Pritzker Prize, which was instead given in 1991 to Robert Venturi, her husband and partner since 1969. More recently, the AIA has opened up its Gold Medal to acknowledge more than one person at a time, so Denise and Robert finally both were recognized for their contributions in 2016. In this context is the unique story of Zaha Hadid, arguably the most famous female architect in the world. In her long career, she won worldwide acclaim and prizes based on her own merits, and not by sharing her laurels with a male partner. Zaha Hadid was the first woman and Muslim in history to win the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2004. Twice


she was the recipient of Britain’s RIBA Stirling Prize. She was awarded the Republic of France’s Commandeur de l’Ordre des Artes et des Lettres and Japan’s Praemium Imperiale and, finally in 2012, she was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in recognition of her immense contributions to our cultural heritage. With so many accomplishments, it is quite hard to sum up in just a few words her amazing life and career. Zaha Mohammad Hadid was born in 1950 in Baghdad to an upperclass family from Mosul. Her father, Muhammad al-Hajj Husayn Hadid was a wealthy industrialist and politician, and Minister of the Treasury under General Abd al-Karim Qasim. Zaha attended schools in Baghdad, Switzerland and Great Britain in a very multicultural atmosphere. She studied mathematics at the American University in Beirut before pursuing a degree from London’s Architectural Association School of Architecture in 1977. She became a member of the Office for Metropolitan Architecture founded by Rem Koolhaas and in 1979, she opened her own London office, Zaha Hadid Architects. It was the start of an outstanding career spanning all four corners of the earth: 950 projects, 44 countries. Called admiringly, the Queen of Curves, Zaha was a true pioneer; her singular style in "deconstructivism" is based on fluid, dynamic, unexpected forms. Her steadfast research brought her to challenge the


4 2


5 1) MAXXI, the Museum of XXI Century Art, Rome 2009 2) Heydar Aliyev Center, Baku, Azerbaigian 2012 3) London Aquatics Centre 2012

4) Concept Superyacht for Blohm+Voss 5) Celeste Necklace

norm, breaking rules and employing innovative materials everywhere. Her vision brought her to update cities and create new places: cultural centers, museums, opera houses, sports centers, stations, towers and buildings, each one a gift for posterity. One of her first internationally acclaimed projects was in 1993 – the Vitra Fire Station at Weil am Rhein. It would be followed by an exhaustive list of successes: The Richard and Lois Rosenthal Center for Contemporary Art (Cincinnati, Ohio 2003), the Guangzhou Opera House (2011), Hadid's first major project in China, the Heydar Aliyev Center in Baku, Azerbaigian (2012) and the London Aquatics Center for the 2012 Olympics.

World's 100 Most Powerful Women (2008) and the 2010 Time 100 list included her amongst the most influential thinkers of the year.

Zaha Hadid lent her unique style to projects in Italy as well, including Rome’s MAXXI Museum (2009) and the Hadid Tower and Residence for Citylife in Milan, opening just in time for the World’s Fair, Expo2015.

Zaha also strived to inspire students, teaching at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, the University of Illinois at Chicago's School of Architecture, and the Hochschule für bildende Künste Hamburg.

For Zaha Hadid, the term “Archistar” certainly fits the bill: She was listed at No. 69 on Forbes'

Her legacy, in her words, “I still believe in the impossible.”

The single and childless Hadid was completely devoted to her art, saying, “I mean really you have to go at it (architecture) full time. You can't afford to dip in and out." The indefatigable Hadid was able to express and apply her personal style not only as an architect but also as a designer, from innovative furniture to original jewellery and fashion right up to her stunning 128m superyacht!




Jennifer Doudna: The Promise and Peril of Gene Editing By ALEXANDRA WOLFE on the Wall Street Journal


eneticist Jennifer Doudna, 52, is waiting for the day when she reads about the first baby whose genes have been altered in a lab. “It’s only a matter of time,” says the professor of chemistry and molecular biology at the University of California, Berkeley—within the next 10 years, she thinks, or even sooner. The idea excites and worries her because she has been so deeply involved in the technology that would make it possible. Called Crispr-Cas9, it is a way to edit DNA and potentially remove and replace genes for certain diseases, characteristics and capabilities. As scientists have become more comfortable with the technology, its reach has grown – as have ethical concerns about how it may be used. In 2014, Chinese scientists successfully produced monkeys that had been genetically modified at the embryonic stage using Crispr-Cas9. And last year, another team of researchers in China published a paper about their experiments editing genes in human embryos. (The researchers tried but failed to repair a gene that causes a hereditary blood disease.) Last month, a U.K. regulatory group approved research using the technology on viable human embryos. Some scientists, including Dr. Doudna, have called for a moratorium on using Crispr and other gene-editing techniques to bring about any heritable genetic changes in humans. UC Berkeley is in the midst of a patent battle over the technology’s invention, with billions of dollars at stake. In March 2013, Dr. Doudna and six other scientists filed a patent application with 155 claims related to Crispr-Cas9. In October of that year, scientist Feng Zhang of the Broad Institute and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology filed his own claims related to Crispr; his application was approved first. UC Berkeley contested his claims, and proceedings began last week at the federal Patent Trial and Appeal Board to determine who invented the technique first. The side that prevails could get all the rights to the technology. “The Broad Institute looks forward to participating in this process as it provides an opportunity to bring clarity to the field,” said a spokesman. Crispr stands for “clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats”; Cas9 is the protein that makes the gene editing work. Basically, Cas9 helps to snip out a piece of DNA at any point in an organism – including, for instance, viral or faulty DNA – and then enables the cell to stitch the ends back together. Dr. Doudna collaborated on her research with Emmanuelle Charpentier, a researcher now at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology in Berlin. Early on, she was excited by how efficient the technique was. One night, she went home to make dinner for her 13-year-old son and started laughing. “My son said, What’s so funny?”, she remembers. “We have


this crazy protein that they program to find and destroy viruses!” she told him. “It just struck me as so amazing that biology had come up with this.” She and her colleagues published a paper about the technique in 2012 and then another in 2013, three weeks after Dr. Zhang published his own research. (George Church, a geneticist at Harvard University, also published Crispr-Cas9 research at the same time.) Scientists have high hopes for a new gene-editing technology that could provide them with unprecedented power to rewrite the code of life. Growing up in Hilo, Hawaii, the daughter of two university professors, Dr. Doudna was always fascinated by the natural environment. She recalls wondering as a child, for instance, how science could explain the sky being blue. She went on to Pomona College in California, where she studied biochemistry. She is married to Jamie Cate, a biochemistry professor who is also at UC Berkeley. For now, she thinks that scientists should hold off on editing genes in human embryos. Too much is still unknown about the long-term effects and its consequences, she says. “It should not proceed until we have a chance to understand better how the technology operates in those kinds of cells, as well as to provide time for societal consideration”, she says. The ethical issues mainly center on the idea that people could edit genes in embryos to select for various heritable traits, from eye color to intelligence – uses that Dr. Doudna opposes. She does support using the technology to cure genetic diseases such as cystic fibrosis and muscular dystrophy in adults and children. Less contentious are the technique’s agricultural applications, such as genetic editing to protect plants from fungal infections or to create drought and disease-resistant crops such as wheat or sorghum. She hopes that Crispr – once it is fully tested – will eventually be as accepted as in vitro fertilization, which was also controversial when it was first introduced. “I wonder if over time people will get comfortable with the idea of human genome editing in embryos, at least if it were going to correct a mutation that would otherwise give rise to a debilitating lifetime disorder and maybe to even remove some kinds of debilitating bad diseases from the human genome completely,” she says. As Dr. Doudna notes, the DNA modifications made to embryos could be transmitted to future generations. “It’s kind of a profound thing because if you really think about it,” she says, “it really means altering human evolution on some level.”

let’s go“social”


hich women social media experts have the strongest, most active followings? In that sense which are the real power influencers? Last year I researched that question and, with the help of Peek Analytics, produced a top 50 and a top 20 list. This year we’ve done the same.

Google+. @linkedinqueen #8. Kim Garst. Advice on a mixture of social media tools: Google Hangouts, Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram etc. @kimgarst

So here are the Top 20 women social media power influencers as assessed and analyzed by Peek Analytics’ software and by me.

#9. Lori Ruff. LinkedIn specialist who recently launched a new advisory service to guide companies on the use of the LinkedIn platform. @loriruff

To create the list we took nominations here on ReThinking Innovation and did our own research to be sure we did our best to identify potential candidates. In total we assessed over 850 social media influencers.

#10. Ann Handley. Ann manages the content factory that is marketingprofs, a site that is producing better and better social media content, as well as being a content marketing expert in her own right. @marketingprofs

There were a few criteria for inclusion. The experts had to be writing about social media and not just marketing, though that criterion was loosely applied – writing about social media and content marketing for example qualified people.

#11. Pam Dyer. Marketing manager at SolutionsIQ, Pam covers a variety of social media issues and trends in depth. @pamdyer

We were also looking for people who create content on a regular basis – not just people who are distributing other people’s content via Twitter. But the big deciding factor is how active a candidate’s networks are – Peek Analytics’ algorithm goes in search of those people who are in your network and your network’s network, and it assesses if those are real people or robots, and, if real people, how actively they participate in social media. By and large, that makes this a list of people with quality followings. Here is the list of top 20 women. We’ll follow up with further analysis of geographical distribution and the most active verticals. #1. Ann Tran. Ann blogs about travel and leisure, and provides cutting edge advice to social media users in all markets. Like a lot of power influencers, she is also a power user – 100,000 tweets so far. @AnnTran #2. Jessica Northey. It’s a trend this year, leading influences those whose base is in a specific vertical. For Jessica, it is music. She also says she’s moving away from blogging and towards Google+. @jessicanorthey #3. Mari Smith. Mari is a leading Facebook marketing expert and one of the top 10, overall from last year. She’s also the author of The New Relationship Marketing. @marismith #4. Liz Strauss. Liz runs successful-blog.com. She’s currently taking on the challenge of cancer. Best wishes. @lizstrauss #5. Pam Moore. Covering Facebook, Google + and the business of social. @pammktgnut #6. Renee Blodgett. Deep seated social media marketing expertise with a long chain of references and endorsements from mainstream media. @magicsaucemedia #7. Eve Mayer. Officially a LinkedIn expert writes about a diverse range of social media issues and tools – Pinterest, Instagram,

on Forbes by Haydn Shaughnessy

# 12. Laura Fitton. An online marketing generalist Laura is also a recognized expert in Twitter. The main reason for inclusion, apart from her ranking, is that she is a co-author of Twitter for Dummies. Handle: @pistachio #13. Bonnie Sainsbury. An eclectic range of themes around social, including one of the few on the list directly addressing mobile. @bsainsbury #14. Lilach Bullock, a social media marketing consultant with a strong following and some nice comparison work that looks at Pinterest, Facebook, earned media and more. @Lilachbullock or socialable.co.uk #15. Deborah Lee. British adviser with eclectic social media interests but a particular focus on Twitter. @debsylee #16. Marsha Collier. Marsha is the author of 40 books, many of them in the social arena, particularly around social media and customer service. A lot of her dissemination work takes place via Twitter and those books. Increasingly, we notice, she is taking her trade onto Google+. @Marshcollier #17. Lori Taylor. Lori writes an eclectic blog covering Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and general social media tips but her main work is in social media and direct response. Lori appeared in last year’s Top 50. @lorirtaylor #18. Viveka vonRosen. Viveka is primarily a LinkedIn expert, though we’ve noticed her Twitter distribution is much more diverse than this @LinkedInExpert #19. Sandi Krakowski. Sandi is a Facebook marketing expert and works on that fine line between social media and spiritual inspiration. I interviewed her about that work here on Forbes.com. @sandikrakowski #20. Susan Cooper. Susan is a social media generalist but with a clear vertical focus in music. “I currently handle social media marketing, consulting and strategy targeted for musicians, entertainers and select businesses.” @buzzedition


Powersave Solutions Ltd., with more than 20 years of experience, provide business to business energy saving lighting solutions through the supply of retrofit high grade LED lighting which can produce significant electricity savings of up to 70% while making a sustainable and responsible contribution to helping the environment. Our projects to date include commercial business centres, shopping centres, sporting centres, industrial manufacturing facility, hotel, cafeterias, health care facilities, etc. Industry and commercial buildings account for more than half of today’s energy consumption and at Powersave Solutions Italia we choose the most appropriate energy solution for each organization supporting its sustainable growth. In today’s world with high energy prices and rapid climate change, Powersave Solutions Italy provides proven expertise in developing, constructing and operating greener and more economical energy lighting products. By manufacturing our own products we are in a better position to offer significant benefits in terms of volume, prices and warranty terms, innovation and design. In line with government directive, all lamps that are lower than grade B will be banned starting from September 2016. LED’s are A classification and offer better durability, longer life, unrestricted design, safety, longevity and more economical than any other light on the market.

Life Coach Italy s.r.l. contribuisce allo sviluppo del potenziale umano per il benessere personale e organizzativo. Conta su un vasto network di qualificati professionisti che operano da anni in vari settori negli ambiti Life e Corporate, con particolare riferimento alla metodologia del Coaching in linea con gli standard di qualità di International Coach Federation. Life Coach Italy offre una serie di servizi integrati e innovativi caratterizzati da: • Competenza • Personalizzazione • Trasparenza • Rispetto della Privacy

www.lifecoachitaly.it 22

After having worked as interns and realized there were still some differences between men and women, 3 business school students from HEC Paris, Alix, Charlène and CÊcile, decided to create Inspir'Her, an association whose aim is to encourage young girls and women to dare. Convinced that promoting more women role models is the key, are going around Europe to meet and interview many women in various fields, in order to show those inspiring portraits on the web and as many people as possible. In order to set themselves a challenge, and to show that anything is possible, they are doing this tour by bike! As of today, they have already marked almost 3000km across Portugal, Spain and Italy!! If you wish to support them, follow their project or suggest women they can meet, don't hesitate to contact them by email or to follow them on Facebook or their website.

PWA supports young women

Non-profit seeking Volunteer Financial Manager/Accountant Grandmother Project – Change through Culture is a small US non-profit working to improve the health and wellbeing of women and children in developing countries through programs that directly involve grandmothers as influential family members, and that focus on improving communication between generations. Most of our work currently takes place in West Africa, and we have offices Mbour and Velingara, Senegal, and Rome, Italy. We are seeking a volunteer Financial Manager/Accountant to assist us with regular accounting and financial reporting functions (following US accounting/financial practices), and to assist us with improving our practices, for approximately 5-7 hours a week. While this role can be carried out from anywhere, the Executive Director is based in Rome and a volunteer based in the Rome area would be a plus. If you would like to contribute your time and professional skills, please contact Kathy Kane.


Upcoming events May ConneXion Freewheeling

Hotel Independent Via Volturno, 48, Roma

Wed, May 6, 18:30  15 PWA AGM and Board Elections May Conference: Innovation Through Green Economy by Adriana Santanocito and Enrica Arena, Orange Fiber

Hotel Aleph Roma

Wed, May 18, 19:00

Save the date PWA Summer Party

Wed, June 15 Check out www.pwarome.org 24

Membership news New Members Welcome!

We would like to welcome Kelly Medford Askey as a member who has recently joined our Association. PWA is a place that grows with each member, therefore we are looking forward to enjoying PWA together with you! If you’d like to join, visit our website and contact MembershipDirector@pwarome.org

2015-2016 PWA Board and Team members President Valerie Baxter President@pwarome.org Secretary Edna Francis Secretary@pwarome.org Treasurer Michelle Bassanesi Treasurer@pwarome.org Programming Christine Sterpetti Programming@pwarome.org Membership Olga Plyaskina MembershipDirector@pwarome.org Corporate Member coordinator Maria Banks MembershipCorporate@pwarome.org Associate Member coordinator Nicole Giacomarra MembershipAssociate@pwarome.org Social Isabella Cattan SocialDirector@pwarome.org Social Co-Chair Adriana Tempesta SocialCoChair@pwarome.org PR & Sponsorship Christina Barbiero Sponsorship@pwarome.org PR & Sponsorship co-chair Marta Schneider PR@pwarome.org Newsletter Hanna Suni NewsletterEditor@pwarome.org Newsletter editorial consultant Lisa R Tucci NewsletterConsultant@pwarome.org Webmistress Rossana Scazzocchio Webmistress@pwarome.org Community Director Paola Devescovi Community@pwarome.org Mentoring Program Manager Maria Letizia Nesta Mentor@pwarome.org Mentor Luisa La Via MentorshipConsultant@pwarome.org Think Tank Michela Lazzè SpecialProjects@pwarome.org Think Tank Alessandra Tacconelli Thinktank@pwarome.org Media communications assistant Katia Ingegneri Media@pwarome.org Legal Advisor Caterina Flick Legal@pwarome.org


Our In-Kind Donor

PWA Professional Women’s Association is a recipient of a Google Grants award. The Google Grants program supports registered nonprofit organizations that share Google’s philosophy of community service to help the world in areas such as science and technology, education, global public health, the environment, youth advocacy and the arts. Google Grants is an in-kind advertising program that awards free online advertising to nonprofits via Google AdWords.

Our partners and sponsors

Main Sponsors

Profile for Professional Women's Association of Rome

The People We Are April 2016  

The monthly online magazine of The Professional Women's Association of Rome

The People We Are April 2016  

The monthly online magazine of The Professional Women's Association of Rome


Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded