First and foremost – welcome to She In The CLE! It’s been a long-time in the works and we’re so glad to be official. So, I think it is fitting that I explain how this idea came from brain to blog – in a blog!
I live in Cleveland and love it. I grew up in Youngstown, OH and moved to Chicago right out of college and stayed there for almost 11 years. When I boomeranged back – I was thrilled to find that Cleveland had everything that Chicago did…and more.
And the people here were amazing. I had a breakfast, lunch and happy hour booked for months via people who wanted me to network and get to know the movers and shakers in town. And I soaked it all in and was in awe of the talent in our town.
But there was one thing missing – 90 percent of my meetings were with men. As a side note –I have nothing against men. I have a fantastic husband, great son and two amazing brothers who play a major role in my life. But where were all the ladies? I was a bit confused.
Over the last nine years, I did find my tribe of women. I met them during meetings, at conferences and through friends of friends. And I can’t imagine my life without them. But when I think back to 2007 – I wasn’t sure where they were or where I could find them. You don’t have to be a genius to understand that isn’t good for the community, for the women who make it thrive or for anyone else.
So for quite some time I wrestled with how to create a space where all these amazing women could connect easily. I think if you’re from here – it’s easy. You grew up together, you know the women being honored via Crain’s Women of Note and the Athena Awards. But what about all the rest of the women who make up the fabric of our city?
I struggled with it. And to top it off – because I was in marketing – I would get so many calls and emails from women who wanted to start blogging and getting their voice out there – but they didn’t know how. Through LinkedIn blogging? Should they create their own website or blog? Did I know someone who could help them? And finally I realized – I could help them!
That’s where the conversations started. I had awesome interactions with Christina Klenotic, Allison Peltz and Shibani Faehnle who are all fantastic bloggers – but also struggled with their existing platforms. What if Allison wanted to write something that didn’t fit within her blog focus? We talked about the dilemma and came up with an approach. What if we created a site where established bloggers and new bloggers can all publish? It’s a platform that takes the fear away – and gives a voice to all the fabulous women that we work and interact with every day!
And this is where we landed. We started talking to people throughout the community. We went to Charity at Chartreuse who created our amazing logo – and we started talking to close to 100 women collectively who were interested. And the groundswell began.
So that’s really the story. Nothing major – except somewhere along the way – all of us have become incredibly impassioned by it. I wake up in the middle of the night and think about someone I met the week before who should be blogging. I see someone in a business meeting and I know that they have something to share that could change another person’s life. It’s become wonderfully fun and dramatically important to all of us.
So I am thrilled to share it with you. Please read the blogs – and more importantly, SHARE THEM. These are important voices in our community and they deserve to be heard. And I’m sure every person reading this has a blog inside of them, just waiting to get out.
And I can’t wait to read it!