EVENT:: Oakton Community College WGS Conference - March 2009

This week's giveaway: The American Journey of Barack Obama
(There are new rules & an extended deadline)

I just got the acceptance email and am super psyched! Full details will be forthcoming...

Oakton Community College
Women’s & Gender Studies Conference – March 2009

“Chicago Feminisms: Past, Present & Future”

Roundtable Discussion: “Work & Family: The Final Feminist Frontier?”

Mothers have a long history of organizing for better schools, childcare and labor conditions.
And, we have been at the forefront of opening the doors and cracking the ceilings that have led
to women’s advancement in the workplace. But, despite the tremendous progress we have made, many of us continue to face an uphill battle when it comes to trying to earn a living and pursue a career while caring for our children and families.

The roundtable will focus on how societal shifts in recent decades have disproportionately affected mothers and explore some of the remaining obstacles to their economic security - from pay inequality and employment discrimination to a lack of supportive workplace policies like paid maternity leave and flexible scheduling. The workshop will also include an overview of local and national advocacy efforts underway to address these issues and engage participants in a dialogue in which they will be encouraged to share their own ideas for creating change.

Three Chicago-area moms will lead the conversation, drawing on their personal experiences and
stories of other activists who are taking to the Internet, the streets, and the halls of government to tackle the unfinished business of the feminist movement and, hopefully, make a difference.

Discussants will include:
Veronica Arreola, director of the Women in Science and Engineering program and assistant
director of the Center for Research on Women and Gender at the University of Illinois at
Chicago. Veronica is a long-time member of the Chicago feminist community, devoting her
time to such causes as the Chicago Abortion Fund and Women In Media & News. A veteran
blogger, she can be heard online at Work It, Mom!, Chicago Parent and Viva La Feminista (to
name a few) and is a frequent speaker on all things feminist.

Catherine Caporusso, an attorney who represents plaintiffs in employment and civil rights
cases. Catherine is the President of the Northwest Suburban chapter of the National
Organization for Women (NOW) as well as a member of the board of Women Employed, the
Illinois chapter of the National Employment Lawyers Association, and National NOW's Mothers
and Caregivers Rights Committee. She is a frequently invited lecturer on employment law issues, and blogs for Work It, Mom!, a website devoted to working mothers.

Rhonda Present, founder & director of ParentsWork, an Illinois parents’ organization she
started to give voice to the struggles today’s moms and dads face and bring them together to
advocate for change. Most recently, Rhonda led a successful campaign that mobilized over 300
parents in pushing for a more “family-friendly” schedule in the Evanston public schools. Her
views have been featured on The Huffington Post and MomsRising.org as well as in the Chicago
Sun-Times, the Chicago Tribune, and Chicago Parent magazine