Dr. Jennifer W. Shewmaker

Parent, Educator, Author

Gender and Media Talk Podcast: Girls and Leadership

This week on Gender and Media Talk I’m talking with two experts, Lori Day and Pia Guerrero about the challenges that girls face in becoming leaders and strategies that caring adults can use to help build their skills and confidence.

Lori Day is an educational psychologist and consultant with Lori Day Consulting in Newburyport, MA. She is the author of Her Next Chapter: How mother-daughter book clubs can help girls navigate malicious media, risky relationships, girl gossip, and so much more. She also speaks on the topic of raising confident girls in a disempowering marketing and media culture.

Pia Guerrero is a media literacy and youth development expert with a focus on body image, race, and representation in the media. From Harlem to Hawaii, she has led presentations to hundreds of teachers, youth workers, and youth on the impact the media has on identity. Pia has also worked with and/or advised the Department of Education, PBS, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), and the Independent Television Service (ITVS). Her work with Adios Barbie has been mentioned in MSNBC, BBC 4, The New York Times, Forbes, Al-Jazeera, Seventeen, Fitness, Glamour, among others. Pia has also appeared numerous times as an expert on CNN’s Headline News (HLN) and Huffington Post Live. She is also the Executive Director of SheHeroes, a non-profit that profiles exceptional career women for their accomplishments and character with the purpose of empowering girls to pursue rewarding careers.

Today we’ll be discussing a new report that was just released by Harvard’s Making Caring Common. The report is called Leaning Out: Teen girls and leadership biases. This report indicates that girls continue to face challenges in being perceived as leaders, and shares some common biases that many girls, boys, men and women have that keep girls from developing their full potential. Thankfully, the report also shares some strategies that parents, teachers, and other caring adults can use to support girls in developing their leadership skills.

We’ll also talk about this article on the report from the Washington Post. In the same vein, we’ll spend some time discussing this article from The Conversation, which reports on research suggesting that even now, when people across the world think of science, they think of men.

I’ve asked Lori and Pia to share their thoughts on the Harvard report and the articles, challenges to girls as they strive to develop leadership skills, and strategies to support them.

You can find out more about Lori and Pia and the work that they do to empower girls at the links below.


Lori Day




Pia Guerrero



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