No more hitting it, or even breaking it – let’s shatter it!
HIMSS16 attendees can focus on many topics this year. I will be pursuing my passion for developing the next generation of leaders, especially helping women deal with barriers they face as we try to level the playing field.
I’m happy to be a voice for women – but I’m not alone.
- On Tuesday at 10AM at the HIMSS Spot, the annual #healthITchicks meetup is happening. I’ll be one of the guest speakers along with Rebecca Freeman, Chief Nursing Officer at ONC and Dana Sellers, CEO at Encore. Jennifer Dennard, #healthITchicks founder, organizes monthly TweetChats on a range of topics as well as this annual meetup at HIMSS. Join us for some interesting Q&A and networking!
- On Wednesday at 2PM, I will be one of two female executives speaking at the Views from the Top Session – “Shattering the Glass Ceiling – Lessons Learned for Aspiring Female Executives”. I’ll be joined by Deanna Wise, Chief Information Officer at Dignity Health. Carla Smith, EVP at HIMSS will be the moderator. A similar session last year was a big hit with a large crowd so let’s make this year even bigger and better! Kate Gamble with HealthSystemCIO.com wrote an excellent preview of the session this week.
- And in a two hour closed session on Monday morning, I will be one of six executive women that Carla has pulled together for a Women in HIT roundtable session. More than 900 women responded to a recent HIMSS / Healthcare IT News survey on the women’s professional needs in the health IT field. According to Carla, those responding overwhelmingly wanted more recognition of female leaders, and more gender-focused resources that support networking, mentoring, and educational and career opportunities. She hopes that the roundtable will give HIMSS valuable input towards developing a year-round, comprehensive, and meaningful program to empower women, and to nurture the next generation of women leaders.
Other HIMSS16 events to note are the annual Women’s Reception on Tuesday night, a reception for leaders of the future called “Millennials on a Mission”, and the “Disruptive Women in Health Care, Tech and Management” session on Tuesday at 2:30PM.
I am encouraged to see so many successful women helping their female colleagues and the next generation of women leaders. I’ve learned that one of my newest colleagues, Janet Miller, Chief Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary at University Hospitals, has been an active advocate as well. She started the Women’s Leadership Council at University Hospitals a few years ago. While still with a law firm, in 1997 she founded an organization called In Counsel with Women to ensure women executives in Northeast Ohio had a forum to seek each other’s counsel on business matters.
And I’m encouraged by recent data showing more women going into technology fields. But all too often well qualified women still have to prove themselves in ways that men don’t have to when it comes to being promoted into senior ranks.
It remains to be seen if the ultimate glass ceiling in the U.S. will be shattered this year. Whether or not you like Hillary Clinton, her qualifications are not in doubt.