20th Anniversary Gala Celebration

Women for Women International celebrated its 20th anniversary on December 3, 2013, at the American Museum of Natural History’s Milstein Hall of Ocean Life. Watch "Dare to Hope" the new video WfWI debuted at the gala.

Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer of Facebook, Gala Honorary Chair, and WfWI Board member, called Mrs. Clinton “the transformative political figure of my lifetime” in her presentation of the Champion of Peace Award to Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham.

Keeping with the evening’s theme of Stronger Women, Stronger Nations, Mrs. Clinton spoke to the importance and impact of advancing the rights of women and girls around the world, a cause she has tirelessly promoted over the years.

“You cannot have real peace and security if you marginalize and exclude women,” said Mrs. Clinton. “You cannot have decent, just societies if you abuse women. You cannot move on a path to democracy and open economies if you isolate and marginalize half the population. For some that was self-evident, others have had their eyes opened over the past 20 years.”

Farida Musanovic, the first field representative of WfWI in Bosnia and Herzegovina, presented the Visionary Award to WfWI co-founders Amjad Atallah and Zainab Salbi. CNN Anchor and Correspondent Isha Sesay was the program host.

Under the leadership of gala co-chairs and WfWI board members, Christine Fisher and Amy Towers, the 20th Anniversary Gala set a new fundraising record, raising $2.1 million to support WfWI’s ongoing work around the world. The gala sold out with 675 guests in attendance.

Major supporters included: Bloomberg, Kimball and Patrizia Chen, Cohler Charitable Fund, Sharon Davis Design, Deborah Harmon and Dr. Robert Seder, Nancy and Miles Rubin, Sheryl Sandberg, Lekha Singh, Mary Menell Zients, and Jan Rock Zubrow and Barry Zubrow.

“Our anniversary gala was an exceptional moment in the history of Women for Women International,” said President and CEO Afshan Khan. “Over the past 20 years, we’ve made a lasting impact on women and their communities around the world, but our work is far from done. I am inspired about what the future holds, both for WfWI and for women around the world.”