Inspiring a Movement of Women, One Talk At a Time

 In WCS Blog
by Anjali Manghnani and Poonum Agrawal

WCS Talks is an annual TED Talks style event hosted by Women in Cleantech and Sustainability (WCS). This event aims to redefine the female experience in cleantech and sustainability by showcasing brilliant women and encouraging every woman to follow her dreams.

WCS Talks was started in 2014 and in part motivated by the lack of cleantech events featuring female keynote speakers. Lisa Ann Pinkerton, Founder and Chairwoman of WCS and Founder and President of Technica Communications.  recounts that she used to attend the TEDx Women Bay Area event for several years. But after a change in TEDx direction a void was left in her professional experience.

Pinkerton says she decided then, “Well, since they’re not having this event anymore, I’ll create my own.”

Rare in its structure and format, WCS Talks give 20 speakers, the vast majority women the opportunity to share career advice, and personal insights in a format both inspiring, captivating and memorable.  Pinkerton notes, “We want speakers to walk away realizing the power of their own voice and their own experience to positively impact other people.”

Vice Chairwoman of WCS, Felicia Bellows, hopes that the struggles the speakers have faced in their careers and the insights that they share about their accomplishments will stir the audience and inspire them to pursue their dreams.

This year’s event includes Julia Murphy, Managing Director of Ultra Capital. She attended WCS Talks 2015. “I knew then that I wanted to speak this year. Also, I am passionate about sustainability and meeting more people in the space.”

Another speaker this year is Yulia Lushnikova, who works in business development at RES Americas. Ms. Lushnikova has attended many TED Talks and says, “being part of [an event] that is dedicated to the industry I’m in and, moreover, to share this experience with my female peers, I know is going to be very rewarding. I’m looking forward to all of the excitement and inspiration this event will bring.”  See the full list of speakers here.

WCS Talks began as a relatively small event, but now in its third year has grown exponentially while maintaining its initial entrepreneurial spirit. WCS Talks 2016 will be held on Saturday November 5 at Google Headquarters in Mountain View. To get more details on this year’s speaker lineup and to register go to the WCS Talks 2016 website.

Anjali Manghnani is a volunteer with WCS and is currently a sophomore at UC Davis in Environmental Science. Poonum Agrawal is a WCS Board Member and an energy technology and policy specialist with a passion for sustainability and clean, efficient, affordable and accessible power systems.

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