Buenos Aires -- Leadership roles for women

La Ciudadela University Residence, in collaboration with the Center for Entrepreneurship at the IAE, the School of Business Management at Austral University, organized a seminar under the title Women, what is your leadership role today? The seminar took place on Saturday, April 30, at the Pilar university campus.

The conference was opened by Silvia Torres Carbonell, director of the Center for Entrepreneurship. It provided an opportunity for dialogue between the audience, some 700 university students and young professionals, and the speakers—distinguished professional women in various fields who transmitted their experience in both the professional and family spheres. All of them agreed that women, as well as men, can integrate family and professional work, and that the feminine contribution is indispensable in society. At the same time, there was unanimity that the concept of leadership of women has certain characteristics of its own and must always include the idea of service to the common good.

One of the panels was led by Graciela Barbadillo, a ballerina at the Teatro Colon, Maria Gattinoni de Mujía, a lawyer, and Raquel San Martín, editor of the education section in La Nación. Another panel included Clarisa Estol, president of the Banco Hipotecario Argentino, Ana Giesso, a businesswoman in the fashion industry, and Maria Amelia Videla, of Manpower-Argentina. The latter emphasized, as a special quality of women, flexibility, understood as the capacity for interruption and negotiation: “This permits women,” she said, “to carry out an agenda that includes doing a number of different things at the same time.” Clarisa Estol concluded her presentation with a strong affirmation: “A person is not complete if she doesn’t have a family...My most valuable works of art are my children.”

“Education begins in the family; it is there that the most important values are imparted. School comes later. Therefore it is important to spend time with one’s family. This is why my children and my husband are the most important reality in my life,” declared the well-known model, television hostess and now businesswoman, Valeria Mazza, in reply to a question during the discussion period that followed the working sessions.

The conference was closed by Paola Delbosco, a doctor in philosophy from La Sapienza University in Rome: “A woman brings to the world something unique to her: her maternity,” she noted. Citing Edith Stein, she said that a woman’s soul “should be welcoming, luminous, noble and tranquil,” in order to protect life and perceive the needs of others.

Romana, No. 40, January-June 2005, p. 147-148.