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On Sunday evening, the Women’s Initiative Fellows arrived in New York City to begin the “Experience America” portion of the program. The Fellows were invigorated by the city that never sleeps, as it reminded them of home. Shortly after the Fellows checked into the hotel, they gathered to head out for an informal site seeing trip to Time Square. The substance of the New York visit began on Monday with a fantastic presentation by Pam Allyn, Founder and Executive Director of LitWorld, a non-profit literacy program based in New York City. She and her colleagues inspired the Fellows to find and tell their story, and encouraged them to set a vision for their work and life based on their unique core values. Building upon this session, Lynette Lewis, author of Climbing the Ladder in Stilettos, motivated the Fellows to establish a purpose statement which will drive them throughout every aspect of their lives. This session was designed to build the foundation for their personal action plans and to set a compass for their future. Additionally, the Fellows met with a representative from Reuters to discuss the value of an unfettered press. Dana Perino and two of her female colleagues also hosted the Fellows at Fox News to impart secrets of successful women. On Tuesday, the Fellows joined Mrs. Laura Bush at the New York Stock Exchange to ring the opening bell and participate in a discussion with leading businesswomen which was moderated by Erin Burnett of CNN. During the discussion, the Wall Street women gave great tips about navigating careers in male dominated arenas. Following on the NYSE visit, Goldman Sachs welcomed the Fellows for a thought leadership forum with Mrs. Bush, followed by a high-powered ladies luncheon at which several leading women addressed common challenges and revealed best practices for overcoming them. As an incredible finish to a heady day, the Fellows were hosted by Diana Taylor at Bloomberg for an opportunity to meet a number of extraordinary women in various industries who provided additional invaluable advice, guidance, and information. As the Amtrak train pulled away from Pennsylvania Station, the Fellows reflected on their unbelievable trip to the Big Apple. The rich content from the visit will remain an inspiration for the Fellows and will propel them to make a greater impact. This post was written by Charity Wallace, Director of the Women’s Initiative at the George W. Bush Institute. << Return to the Women’s Initiative Fellowship Program [gallery]
Charity N. Wallace serves as the Senior Advisor to the Women's Initiative at the George W. Bush Institute and is in an executive graduate program in pursuit of a Global Master of Arts degree in international relations from The Fletcher School at Tufts University. Most recently, Ms. Wallace served as the Vice President of the Global Women’s Initiatives and Senior Advisor to Mrs. Laura Bush. In this role, Ms. Wallace was responsible for setting the vision and managing the policy engagement for the women’s initiatives, including Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon global health initiative, empowering women in the Middle East and working with First Ladies from around the world. The Women's Initiative aims to improve access to education, health care, and economic opportunity for women and children in Africa, the Middle East and Afghanistan.
From February 2009 through September 2010, Wallace served as the Chief of Staff to Mrs. Laura Bush. Wallace oversaw Mrs. Bush’s initiatives - from her wide ranging policy agenda to her the publishing and promotion of Mrs. Bush’s bestselling book, Spoken from the Heart. Wallace served in the Bush Administration from January 2001 to January 2009. During her tenure in the administration, she served as Deputy Chief of Protocol of the United States (2007-2009), Director of Advance for First Lady Laura Bush (2004-2007), and worked in public liaison positions in Presidential Advance, the U.S. Department of Education, the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, and USA Freedom Corps. During her tenure in the Bush Administration and in her current role, Wallace has traveled to 70 countries.
Ms. Wallace serves on the Board of Advisors for the School of Public Policy at Pepperdine University, the Advisory Board of ARZU Studio Hope, the Advisory Board of 4word Women and the Advisory Board of All In Together, an bi-partisan organization that promotes women’s engagement in political and civic life. Ms. Wallace is an ex-officio member on the Human Freedom Advisory Council for the Bush Institute. Ms. Wallace wrote the foreword for the book Work, Love, Pray, which was released in 2011. A native of California, Ms. Wallace graduated magna cum laude from Pepperdine University with a Bachelor of Arts in political science, with a focus in international relations.Full Bio