NEW YORK, August 25, 2022 – Women’s Equality Day honors the anniversary of women’s right to vote - a major milestone on the journey towards equal rights for women. As we celebrate the many bold, trailblazing women of the past and deepen the brand’s commitment to the next generation of groundbreaking female leaders, Johnnie Walker proudly launches the next phase of its ‘First Strides’ initiative to help close the gender gap in leadership.
The ‘First Strides’ initiative will focus on developing a broad community of women ready and empowered to lead the way forward by funding, mentoring and championing women entrepreneurs and leaders in both public and private sectors. To achieve these goals, the iconic brand is building meaningful partnerships with leading organizations paving the way for more seats for women in the boardroom and in public office – including IFundWomen, the go-to funding marketplace for women-owned businesses, and She Should Run - the only nonpartisan organization focused on reaching and cultivating the potential of women who may have never considered elected leadership, but should.
Johnnie Walker is also proud to partner with Lilly Singh to add her voice, talents and passion to efforts to accelerate women in leadership. The entertainer, writer, actor and gender equity advocate has scripted and produced original content to raise awareness of First Strides, championing female leaders and spotlighting the unique challenges they face on the path to progress and parity.
“I am thrilled to work with Johnnie Walker on this important effort,” said Singh. “We have to make space for more women in leadership roles. We often talk about the importance of having a seat at the table. Well, right now there is only one woman at the table for every three men – even though gender diverse teams perform better, are more innovative and more profitable. In other words, it pays to let women lead. We need to build a future where women have more equitable access and opportunities, and where we are all seated as equals.”
She Should Run has set a bold goal to inspire 250,000 women to take their first strides toward public leadership by 2030. Johnnie Walker is proud to donate funds to help mobilize women from all walks of life to explore the possibilities of public leadership. To learn more about how you can be part of the movement, visit www.sheshouldrun.org.
Together with IFundWomen, Johnnie Walker continues to support the organization's mission of closing the funding gap, with a goal of reaching $1 million in grants by 2030 for women-owned businesses so they can thrive in the marketplace. The Johnnie Walker and IFundWomen partnership will offer selected entrepreneurs capital through grants, as well as access to coaching and connections through the IFundWomen platform. To learn more and apply for funding, visit www.ifundwomen.com/johnniewalker.
“Johnnie Walker is committed to celebrating and enabling bold first strides that open the door for seconds and thirds to follow,” said Sophie Kelly, SVP of Whiskies at Diageo North America. “We are proud to support the meaningful work of partners IFundWomen, She Should Run, Black Girl Ventures and the ERA Coalition, among others, and we hope to help them achieve their goals in creating positive change.”
Johnnie Walker introduced the First Strides initiative this year, an evolution of the brand’s First Women campaign, building on the brand’s purpose driven mission to see more meaningful firsts achieved, so there can be seconds, thirds and fourths to follow. To learn more visit https://www.johnniewalker.com/en-us/firststrides/.
About Johnnie Walker
Johnnie Walker is the world's number one Scotch Whisky brand, enjoyed by people in over 180 countries around the world. Since the time of its founder, John Walker, those who blend its whiskies have pursued flavor and quality above else.
Six generations of skilled Master Blenders have pioneered and crafted bold new flavors that have transformed a small Scottish grocery store business, founded in 1820, into an international whisky business selling stylish, authentic, and iconic blends.
Today's range of award-winning whiskies includes Johnnie Walker Red Label, Black Label, Double Black, Green Label, Johnnie Walker High Rye Blended Scotch Whisky, Gold Label Reserve, Aged 18 Years and Blue Label. Together they account for nearly 19 million cases sold annually (IWSR, 2019), making Johnnie Walker the most popular Scotch Whisky brand in the world.
About Diageo North America
Diageo is a global leader in beverage alcohol with an outstanding collection of brands including Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, Bulleit and Buchanan's whiskies, Smirnoff, Cîroc and Ketel One vodkas, Casamigos, DeLeon and Don Julio tequilas, Captain Morgan, Baileys, Tanqueray and Guinness.
Diageo is listed on both the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: DEO) and the London Stock Exchange (LSE: DGE) and their products are sold in more than 180 countries around the world.
For more information about Diageo, their people, brands, and performance, visit www.diageo.com. Visit Diageo's global responsible drinking resource, www.DRINKiQ.com, for information, initiatives, and ways to share best practice. Follow at Twitter and Instagram for news and information about Diageo North America: @Diageo_NA.
About She Should Run
She Should Run is a national, nonpartisan nonprofit dedicated to building a future of gender equality in elected office. As the only lead-finders for the field of women’s representation, they have a bold but necessary goal to inspire 250,000 women to take their first steps toward public leadership by 2030. Their programs mobilize women from all walks of life to awaken to the power of their leadership potential.
IFundWomen is the go-to funding marketplace for women-owned businesses and the people who want to support them with access to capital, coaching, and connections. Its mission is to close the funding gap for women-owned businesses.
It offers immediate access to capital through a premium online fundraising experience, access to small business grants from corporate partners, award-winning business coaching on all the topics entrepreneurs need to know about, and a network of women business owners that sparks confidence, accelerates knowledge and ignites action.