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Dr. Sheila Robinson, founder of Diversity Woman Media, joined Yahoo Finance Live to discuss Diversity Woman Magazine's 'Elite 100' list.
ADAM SHAPIRO: We welcome into the stream Dr. Sheila Robinson, who is the founder of Diversity Women Media, as well as our correspondent, Reggie Wade. And part of the reason we've invited Dr. Robinson in is we talk about entrepreneurs a lot here. You spent almost 15 years in DuPont Chemical and then made what entrepreneurs dream about, the decision-- you chased your dream, and you launched your media enterprise.
And now we have Diversity Women Magazine Inclusion. But it's Diversity Women, which just announced this year's Elite 100 Black Women. So I'm going to turn it over to you to tell us about that. And then Reggie's going to follow up.
SHEILA ROBINSON: Oh, thank you so much for having me. Yes, we are so delighted that we were able to shine the light on 100 dynamic Black corporate executives, who are running organizations that, you know, amass billions of dollars, who are sharing strategy and just letting America-- not only America know that these women are born ready for many of these organizations that are looking for women to put on their boards and not only showing corporate America that, but showing little girls coming behind them what you can be, what you can aspire to be.
REGGIE WADE: Dr. Robinson, Reggie Wade here. You brought up the little girls. What are some of the things your organization doing to bring up the next generation of women leaders?
SHEILA ROBINSON: That's a fabulous question because that is what our focus is. You know, there is a concrete ceiling out there for women of color. And there is a glass ceiling out there for all women. And so, what we do is we work with high potential and high performing women leaders, and we provide them specific tools and resources that they need to break through, to navigate through barriers, so that they can reach their full potential.
You know, while many of the women in the Elite 100, they have rose to the occasion, they did have barriers. And if truth be told, I am so glad that we're celebrating that Thasunda Brown Duckett is the new CEO of TIAA-CREF and I'm also proud that Rosalind Brewer is the CEO of Walgreens.
But if these women that we just highlighted, 100, were given the opportunity to reach their full potential, we could be celebrating 100 Black women CEOs in corporate America. But they'll take the board seats. We'll take that, as we have come a long way. We do have a long ways to go. And to answer your question, we are working diligently to move women in middle management to above that concrete and glass ceiling in every way possible.
REGGIE WADE: Dr. Robinson, I'm just checking out some of these amazing women, and I see the diversity in the fields that they represent. Do you think that's something that really brings a boldness to your initiative?
SHEILA ROBINSON: Well, actually, we did not focus on industry. They were chosen over 250 companies across industries, their peers. They were nominated. These women were nominated. And I don't personally know them. Some I am aware of because of work I've had the privilege of partnering with them on. But these-- they earned the right to share this stage because they were nominated from some of the most prestigious organizations out there, recognizing the contributions that they have made not only in their organization, but also in their industry.
SEANA SMITH: Is there a common trait or a characteristic that stood out to you? Because when you take a look at these women and when we're talking about developing the next generation of leaders, what is their-- I guess, that's in common with these women that maybe the younger generation can learn from?
SHEILA ROBINSON: Yes, so as a Black woman who has had to break through many-- you know, many barriers myself, the greatest trait that I pull from them all is confidence, you know, confidence and being confident within who you are and your contribution to the table. I always share with the women I'm mentoring that what someone else says or does is a reflection of who they are, and what you say and do is a reflection of who you are.
And that being said, we're focusing on the prize. And the prize is doing our job, you know, accomplishing our goal, and not allowing the unconscious bias and some of the racism that many of us have had to experience in our career. So confident, resilience, determination, all of these things reigned high in this group of women that we're actually seeing on the cover of Diversity One.
ADAM SHAPIRO: And the magazine is Diversity Women. We appreciate your being here, Dr. Sheila Robinson, founder of Diversity Women Media, and also Reggie Wade. Always good to see you, Reggie.