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MARY HAYASHI - Healthcare Advocate, Former Assemblymember - Author of Women in Politics
Manage episode 384823072 series 3334551
A recent UN report shows that women are underrepresented at all levels of decision-making worldwide. They say that women in executive government positions and gender equality in the highest positions of power will not be reached for another 130 years. How can we close the gender gap and achieve true representation?
With a distinguished career in public service, Mary Hayashi has spearheaded substantial reforms in mental health services, championed gender equality, and forged powerful, unprecedented partnerships for social causes that previously had no financial or public backing. Recognized as “Legislator of the Year” by the American Red Cross and the California Medical Association, Mary has also been featured on Redbook’s “Mothers and Shakers” list and Ladies’ Home Journal ’s “Women to Watch.” Mary remains a steadfast proponent of social justice expansion and the rights of underrepresented communities. She is author of Far From Home: Shattering the Myth of the Model Minority, and Women in Politics: Breaking Down the Barriers to Achieve True Representation.
"My parents expected me to go to college just enough that I could find somebody, marry, and have kids. Because over 21, you're like an old maid and nobody's going to want to marry you. That was really their mentality. I'd only been in the country for seven years at that time and just kind of feeling lost and didn't know what I wanted to do with my life. And one day I signed up for this Women's Studies class. And I thought it was more about how I could be a better woman to my husband and my kids, that type of home economics class. And that's when I was introduced to feminist literature. And I started reading about the women's movement and how Gloria Steinem went from being a Playboy model to becoming a feminist and how that transpired. And when I started reading about these women who did what they did, a light bulb went on my head that I actually could have a career and do something with my life. And so, I'm not a professional writer. I'm a politician. I do government affairs work but publishing a book is a way to help other women realize their path because that's what feminist literature did for me."