Monday, April 28, 2014

Leadership Breakfast

On April 23, Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast hosted a Leadership Breakfast in Virginia Beach. This breakfast was an opportunity for over 100 community leaders and friends to learn about the Girl Scout Leadership Experience and the Girl Scout alumnae who support it, including the guest speaker for the morning, Dr. Lucy Gibney. Dr. Gibney is a physician, board certified in Emergency Medicine, and the founder and chairman of Lucy’s, a gluten-free, allergy friendly food company, in Norfolk, Va.

Dr. Lucy Gibney in New York City with the four GSCCC girls
who attended the Commission on the Status of Women.
At the Leadership Breakfast, Dr. Gibney spoke about how she came to support and become a mentor for four local Girl Scouts who attended the United Nations 58th Commission on the Status of Women in New York City in March. She also talked about the importance of volunteer participation in supporting girls and about ToGetHerThere, a campaign by Girl Scouts of the USA to encourage people to help empower girls to be leaders and show them that when girls succeed, so does society.

Dr. Gibney’s presentation was supported by a study by the Girl Scout Research Institute that found while 92 percent of girls believe that anyone can acquire the skills of leadership, only 21 percent believe they currently have most of the key qualities required to be a leader. This discrepancy can be a real barrier to leadership for girls— if they do not feel that they have the skills needed to be a leader, they may be discouraged altogether from aspiring towards taking on a leadership role. Girl Scouts launched ToGetHerThere to bring this discrepancy to the forefront so that people are encouraged to help girls reach their full leadership potential and become the leaders that the world needs.

“Girls need our commitment, our wisdom and our enthusiasm,” Dr. Gibney said. “They also need for us to respect them and for us to respect one another. Girls will benefit from what we do for them and what we do for each other.”

Dr. Lucy Gibney, Candice George, Pam Northam

Dr. Gibney also spoke about Ban Bossy, a public service campaign that was recently launched by Girl Scouts of the USA and Lean In to draw attention to the trend of girls being less interested in leadership roles than boys. When a girl asserts herself, she oftentimes risked being called “bossy,” which is a precursor to words like “aggressive” and “too ambitious.” The time to start building female leaders is now, and it is important that girls are encouraged to develop leadership skills and supported when they take on leadership roles.

Dr. Gibney’s experiences in leadership, along with her financial and entrepreneurial successes, make her a strong role model for Girl Scouts and women everywhere.

Dr. Lucy Gibney, GSCCC board member Marie Vesely and Bobette Nelson
More photos from the breakfast can be found here.