Reflections (with audio): Secretary Clinton’s speech at Fortune’s #MPW Summit

Posted: October 17th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Public speaking, Speaker reviews, Women leaders, tech, public speech | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »

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It’s been an incredible week of speakers, thinkers, and ideas. So grateful am I to have seen President Obama, House Speaker Pelosi, and Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton speak in these last few days.

Fortune Magazine certainly convened an incredible group of forthcoming, strong storytellers at their Most Powerful Women Summit. What keeps coming to mind though are particular remarks from Secretary Clinton.


Nelson Mandela and a story that either ethically challenged or inspired or both.

The Secretary engaged with the audience in two different ways: she gave a closing address for the overall summit and then gave a relaxed, in-depth interview with TIME Chairman Ann Moore. There was a question from Moore that was something like: “What person most influenced you?” At this point, Secretary Clinton’s reply just blew me away.

She shared a specific memory about President Nelson Mandela during her White House years. In South Africa at a ceremony honoring Mandela’s leadership, Secretary Clinton remembered Mandela taking the podium and before launching into remarks, he first expressed gratitude for three jailers that worked in the Robben Island Prison where Mandela was incarcerated for many years. It was his focus on the positive qualities of those jailers and the inherent forgiveness within his gratitude that struck the Secretary and now, my outlook on both storytelling and ability to practice a forgiving mindset no matter one’s circumstances.

One minute audio clip: Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton on women in tech mentoring initiatives (and more)

“Talent is universal but opportunity is not.” -Secretary Clinton on the value of mentoring young women nationally and abroad at the #MPW summit.

It was fantastic to hear her resolute focus on the value of mentoring women in technology and overall development. Here’s a quick one minute clip of the Secretary describing the State Department’s initiative to mentor Muslim women abroad on technology and also other partnerships in the works about increasing safety protections for women as well.

Technology, especially social media, is a boon for women expressing their leadership and fortifying their sense of community. It was invigorating to learn more directly from the Secretary about these programs.

What a great day.



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