By Katherine Larkin-Wong • November 11, 2014•Ms. JD, Conference
This week, Ms. JD is officially launching Ms. JD's TIM Initiative. TIM is an acronym for The Incredible Men and the initiative aims to recognize and promote men who are sponsoring and investing in women's careers and women's initiatives. Althought TIM is an acronym, it is also a nod to Ms. JD's male board member and CFO, Tim, who is an unabashed feminist and has been an incredible supporter of Ms. JD.
Like many new projects, Ms. JD's TIM Initiative began in a small way. (Is it weird that I'm envisioning GE's Ideas Commercial as I write this?) The first reference to it can be found at our 6th Annual Conference in Austin, Texas as our volunteer Board hashtagged Tim's work to make the conference happen. I contributed this photo of Tim helping us place flowers for the networking reception with the hashtag #TimInitiative.
But as we brainstormed about the work we wanted to do in the next year, we realized that each of us were grateful to men who had sponsored, mentored, and truly invested in our careers. Many men of our own generation were supportive of the issues that we viewed as important. Recognizing the contributions that Tim had already made to our Board, we wanted to find a way to bring more of these men into our events and conversations.
We also recognized that it can be uncomfortable and (dare we say?!?) intimidating for men to engage in conversations with "women's" groups. We wanted to break down those barriers. So we discussed how we might do that and the TIM Initiative was born.
The goals of Ms. JD's TIM Initiative are simple:
- Give women a tool for recognizing the silent men who have accelerated their careers, sponsored, and mentored them either as individuals or through their women's initiative or organization.
- Engage more men in the conversation around social and economic issues that have traditionally been labeled "women's" issues.
- Enhance the recognition of men who are combatting implicit biases by engaging with women either individually or through broader women's initiatives.
So here's what you can expect to see from Ms. JD in the coming months as part of our TIM Initiative:
- Profiles on the blog of men who have been nominated by our board, volunteers, and our community as men who should be counted as TIM Initiative Members .
- A new TIM Initiative Award at this year's Stronger Together conference that will be given to a man who has shown unparalleled investment in women individually and social and economic issues that affect women disproportionately.
- The opportunity for our community to recognize individual men who are investing in their careers. (Look out for a way for men to become "card carrying members of Ms. JD's TIM Initiative.")
- The hashtag #TIMInitiative on Ms. JD's social media outlets to promote articles, infographics, and other organizations doing similar work.
If you want to get involved, consider writing a post about your male mentors, sponsors, or supporters, nominating a man for a TIM Intiative Award (look for those announcements on the blog in the next few weeks!), tweeting us with the hashtag #TIMInitiative, or thanking a man in your life who has invested in your career.
We'll get started! From all of us at Ms. JD, we want to say THANK YOU to Tim Miller for being the very first member of Ms. JD's TIM Initiative! We are grateful for all of the work you've given to the organization and all of the support you've given to each of us. We hope we've returned it as well!