Moving Indiana Women Forward - February 2012


Moving Indiana Women Forward - February 2012

National Wear Red Day - February 3, 2012

Today is National Wear Red Day®—a day when Americans nationwide will take women’s health to heart by wearing red to show their support for women’s heart disease awareness. For more information about women's heart health, go to:

Celebrating Women's History Month

Does your organization have an event in March to commemorate Women's History Month?  If so, send us information about your event at  We will create a calendar of events on our website that highlight's activities around the state. 

About the Indiana Commission for Women

The Indiana Commission for Women is committed to the full participation of women in all aspects of society in order to make Indiana a better place to live, work and raise a family. Our mission is to understand the needs of Indiana women and their families, and to work strategically both within government and in our communities to help bring about positive change. We work to remove the barriers that hinder women's participation by:
  • Increasing awareness of the status of women in Indiana and the issues they face
  • Recognizing and promoting contributions that Hoosier women make to their community, state and nation
  • Providing balanced analysis of public policy issues that impact women in Indiana.

2012 Torchbearer Awards

On March 1, 2012, the Indiana Commission for Women (ICW) will host its annual salute to women.  The 2012 Torchbearer Awards begins Women's History Month.  These awards are the State of Indiana's most prestigious recognition of women. Those who have earned the honor to be called Torchbearers are women who have broken down barriers to women's full participation or made extraordinary contributions to our communities, our state and our nation.
Through the Torchbearers Awards and other initiatives, the Indiana Commission for Women is moving Indiana women forward. It is up to us to remember those women who have been pioneers and innovators and have contributed to a society where women have every opportunity open to them. 
Please join us at the 2012 Torchbearer Awards on March 1st at the Indiana Government Center Auditorium. Registration is at 3:30 p.m. and the program will begin at 4:00 p.m.  To register to attend, go to  For more information, contact ICW at (317) 233-6303 or

Save the Date - March 7, 2012

For International Women's Day, the Indiana Commission for Women, Vision 2020 and Zonta International has invited Elisheva Darar to join us for a special luncheon on March 7, 2012, to celebrate the economic, political and social achievements of women throughout the world. 
Originally from Ethiopia, Ms. Darar walked through the Sudanese Desert towards Israel at age 6, with her family and 11,000 other Ethiopians, seeking a better life without persecution.  Now in Israel, she works to change the lives of Ethiopian children through education and empowerment.  Because of her work, education and experience, she was appointed as the Division Director for Social Planning in the Department of Policy Planning in the Israeli Prime Minister's office. 
Look for your invitation next week.  For more information, contact or (317) 233-6303.

Congratulations to Indiana State Representative Terri Austin  

In December 2011, the Board of Directors named Indiana State Representative Terri Austin (D-District 36) as Chair of Women In Government's Board of Directors for 2012. Representative Austin was sworn in on January 5, 2012, at the 18th Annual State Directors' Conference held in Scottsdale, Arizona. The national 501(c)(3), non-profit, non-partisan organization of women state legislators, which provides leadership opportunities, networking, expert forums, and educational resources to address and resolve complex public policy issues, is led by a Board of Directors comprised of women state legislators from across the country.
Rep. Austin will serve as chair for one year, and will help to identify pressing public policy topics for the organization's policy agenda, while working to increase membership and support for Women In Government. For more information about Women in Government, go to:

Nobel laureate to speak February 15 at UIndy

Leymah Gbowee campaigned for peace, women’s rights in Liberia. International activist and 2011 Nobel Peace Prize recipient Leymah Gbowee will discuss her efforts to end violence and advance women’s rights February 15th at the University of Indianapolis.  The free public event will begin at 2:30 p.m. in UIndy’s Ransburg Auditorium, 1400 E. Hanna Ave. 
Gbowee helped organize and lead the Liberian Mass Action for Peace, a coalition of Christian and Muslim women who staged public protests credited with ending Liberia’s 14-year civil war in 2003. Accused of war crimes, including the use of child soldiers, President Charles Taylor was forced to resign and later was replaced by current Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the first female elected head of state in modern Africa.
 Gbowee, Sirleaf and Yemeni activist Tawakkul Karman were awarded last year’s Nobel Peace Prize “for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work,” according to the prize committee. Gbowee now serves as executive director of Women Peace and Security Network Africa, a Ghana-based NGO, and she recently was appointed by Sirleaf to lead a new peace and reconciliation initiative in Liberia.
The Feb. 15 appearance is presented by UIndy’s International Relations program and the Sagamore Institute, with additional support from the International Center, IUPUI Law School’s International Center for Law & Human Rights, and Butler, DePauw and Indiana Wesleyan universities.  For more information, call (317) 788-2196.