Supernova Women

By: Tatiahna Turner

In 2015, Supernova Women was formed by women of color that resided in the San Francisco Bay Area. Being that the cannabis industry is predominantly white and male, these women decided that the industry needed to be more inclusive. Less than 20% of the cannabis business is made up of people of color.

Besides starting their own business, these amazing entrepreneurial women also began holding free business workshops, panel discussions, and networking events that are targeted towards educating those who are the most affected by The War on Drugs. Through these events, Supernova Women help other people of color to obtain business permits and get into the legal cannabis industry. When discussing their business one of the Supernova Women founders, Tsion Lencho told Huffington Post, “When you came to the business side of things, there was a complete dearth of conversation about inclusion, even though social and racial justice were at the forefront of the talking points around why you should legalize and why you should allow local jurisdictions to give permits, but no one was talking about providing permits for those who actually went to jail for cannabis.”

In the end, these minority business owners hope that the industry will adapt and learn to respect their part in the business that they helped to grow.

My Favorite Feminist Shows on Netflix

by Matiara Huff

What a time it is to be a feminist! Depressing things are happening

By Netflix Inc. [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

left and right, but at least TV is getting better. If you haven’t been keeping up, here is a current list of my favorite feminist shows on Netflix to spend your summer on.

13 Reasons Why (Trigger warning: suicide, sexual assault, rape) – This is an interesting, but sad story about a girl that committed suicide and left tapes behind detailing all the reasons why she did it. This show humanizes depression and sexual assault; it makes you realize just how close the two could be to you.

Grace and Frankie– This show is a gem! Frankie may be my favorite character ever. This show is about two women whose husbands fall in love with each other and get married later in life. The two women become best friends through the hilarious journey.

The OA– This is a sci-fi series about a group of people that are kidnapped by a scientist and learn how to use magic to escape.

Jessica Jones – This one is a little older than the rest, but if you have yet to watch it, she is a superhero.  Jones is an incredibly strong, complex character and her worst enemy is an interesting character.

Orange is the New Black– Is also an older one, but season 5 comes out on June 9! If you don’t already know, this show is about a women’s prison and the stories of some of the inmates.

Sense 8– This show is perfection to me. The newest season came out on May 5. Though I have yet to watch it, I am sure it’s just as great as the first season. This show is about eight different people in completely different parts of the world who suddenly gain the ability to read each other’s minds and switch bodies.

Chewing Gum– The show follows a 24-year-old shop assistant who is a restricted, religious virgin, who wants to have sex and learn more about the world.

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt– The series follows 29-year-old Kimmy Schmidt as she adjusts to life in New York City after her rescue from a doomsday cult in Indiana where she and three other women were held by Reverend Richard Wayne Gary Wayne for 15 years. Determined to be seen as something other than a victim and armed only with a positive attitude, Kimmy decides to restart her life by moving to New York City.

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend– This show is a complete deconstruction of the title. It is meant to destroy the crazy ex-girlfriend stereotype, while also addressing some of the stereotypes of mental health, and staying a hilarious sitcom.

Crazyhead– It about two teenage girls that kill vampires. It’s a great show that passes the Bechdel test, but it is meant for a younger audience.

Scandal– This show will always have an honorary place in lists like these. It was one of the pioneers for feminist TV as we know it today.

How to Get Away with Murder – Also has an honorary place on this list for the ceilings it broke.

British Singer NAO brings ‘Wonky Funk’ to life

by Zaquoya Rogers

Talk about #blackWOMANmagic! Nao, a black British singer raised in East London, has been all the buzz in her hometown. She started singing in high school, training the choir with their harmonies. Later, she attended the Guildhall School of Music and Drama to study vocal jazz. She then become a backup singer, but opportunity arose one night at a nightclub. A manager discovered her that night and she later released her first song in October 2014.

Since then, many labels have reach out to Nao to get her to sign, but this queen chose to start her own record label called Little Tokyo. Her unique sound blends with off-center pop-funk, electronic and R&B. Many say her “silvery voice glimmers like tinsel but lands like steel.” Nao calls her own sound “wonky-funk,” coining the term. Her debut album, For All We Know, was released in July 2016 and earned a Brit Nomination for Best Female Solo Artist.

The Grapevine talks Black Feminism

by Zaquoya Rogers

Many African Americans identify themselves as feminist, but what does that mean without intersectionality? Not only are black women fighting against sexism, but racism as well. Often the the two bleed into one another.  Feminism tends to leave out issues that are also affect women with different races, religions and sexualities. The Grapevine is a discussion panel that talks about various issues in the black community and I came across their two part discussion on Black Feminism. You can find the rest of their videos on YouTube, tackling topics like relationships, politics, and the Oscars.

IMDB Gets F-Rated

by Thea Voutiritsas

By, Inc. ( [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

This year, the Internet Movie Database (IMDB), added the F-Rating classification to their site. An F-Rating is applied to all films which are directed by women and/or written by women, and/or have significant women on screen. If a film has all three, it receives a TRIPLE F-Rating. The F-Rating system was develoepd by Holly Tarquini, executive Director of the Bath Film Festival.  It was inspired by the Bechdel test, which asks whether a work of fiction features at least two women or girls who talk about something other than a male. The differences in the F-Rating scale and the Bechdel test show how far women have come in film and media arts, however, they also show how much farther we have to go. In the top 250 films of 2015, women made up only 3.6% of all directors, 4.4% of all writers, and 10.4% of all producers.

The stories we see on screen need to be told by a broad spectrum of people to represent our diverse culture. Without change, we will train the next generation to only recognise white males as the protagonists and the ones in control of the cameras, scripts and budgets. As well as equality on screen and behind the camera, more female film critics from diverse backgrounds and ethnicities need to be welcomed into the industry so that opinion and feedback is balanced. The gender pay gap is also evident in the industry. By helping women gain recognition we can empower them to negotiate the contracts and salaries they deserve and help close the gap.

-The F-Rated Team

IMDB has attached the F-Rating to more than 22,000 films in its database. 81 films have received the TRIPLE F-Rating so far, including Clueless, Belle, My Brilliant Career, and The Zookeeper’s Wife. Users can also narrow the search by looking for only women-directed titles, or films with a female protagonist. That’s an F-YEAH for Feminism!

Women’s History Month Trivia


by Devashree Naik

Who is the current Chairperson and the CEO of the second largest food and beverage business in the world known for being the architect of the sustainability business model in that company?

Answer: Indra Nooyi

At the age of 51, Indra Nooyi assumed the role of the President and

CEO of the PepsiCo in 2006 and was promoted to the role of Chairperson in 2007. She has since been the chief architect of Performance with Purpose, PepsiCo’s promise to do what’s right for the business by doing what’s right for people and the planet. This Mrs. Nooyi calls a “future-proof” model, the PepsiCo’s commitment to sustained growth with a focus on human, environmental, and talent sustainability and performance. In 2015, amid much controversy and shock to the investors, she pronounced that the PepsiCo is no longer a soda company. In her tenure of a Leader of largest food and beverage giant, she has been vocal about changing the image of the organization from a sugary carbonated beverage making company to a company that has a nice mix of healthy and fun products in its product line.

Indra Nooyi was born in Madras (now Chennai) in Tamil Nadu state in India. Growing up in a conservative Brahmin family, her homemaker mother instilled in her the confidence and a quality to push back against adversity, which Indra strongly believes being responsible for her success in the male-dominated industry. She holds a B.S. from Madras Christian College, an M.B.A. from the Indian Institute of Management in Calcutta and a Master’s of Public and Private Management from Yale University. She has consistently ranked among the world’s 100 most powerful women.

In addition to being a member of the PepsiCo Board of Directors, Mrs. Nooyi serves as a member of the boards of U.S.-India Business Council, The Consumer Goods Forum, Catalyst, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and Tsinghua University. She is also a member of the Foundation Board of the World Economic Forum, the American Academy of Arts & Sciences and was appointed to the U.S.-India CEO Forum by the Obama Administration. Apart from her professional career, she was a lead guitar player in an all-women rock band in her hometown of Madras, India and was a cricket player in college. Her former boss at PepsiCo and now dean of business schools at Wake Forest University, Steven Reinemund, fondly talks about her as “a deeply caring person” who “can relate to people from the boardroom to the front line.”

Three feminist movies you may have missed

by Zaquoya Rogers

This weekend, I found out about these following feminist movies:

The Hours (2002) – A British-American drama film focusing on three women of different generations whose lives are interconnected by the novel Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf. Critical reaction to the film was mostly positive, with nine Academy Award nominations for The Hours including Best Picture, and a win for Nicole Kidman as Best Actress.

Daughters of the Dust (1991) – An independent film, and the firs feature film directed by an African-American woman to be distributed theatrically in the U.S. The film follows three generations of women on St. Helena Island as they prepare to migrate north. Cinematographer Arthur Japha won the top cinematography prize at the Sundance 1991 dramatic competition for the film.

Persepolis (2007) – A french animated film based on Marjane Satrapi‘s autobiographical graphic novel of the same name. The story centers around a young girl coming of age against the backdrop of the Iranian Revolution. The film co-won the Jury Prize at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival and was also nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature.

I haven’t yet watched them but it makes me ask, “What makes a movie feminist?” I took to Google to find out what criteria or guide to determine how the judgement is made. I found that there was a test called Bechdel test made in 1985 that states that to be a feminist movie, it has to have two female characteristics and one scene in which they  talked about something other than a man.

My reaction: *???!???!??* But later in my research, I found out that its intention was not to judge if a movie is feminist, but to determine if, personally, it is worth spending money. With feminism in film, it takes more than adding more women and allowing them to, you know, ACTUALLY talk about important things. To me, it is showing women as they truly are: independent, diverse, strong and empowered.

Women’s History Month Trivia

by Thea Voutiritsas

This woman is a former stewardess and union leader who led a landmark sex discrimination case in the airline industry.

Answer: Barbara “Dusty” Roads

image via

Barbara “Dusty” Roads is a former stewardess and union leader who led a landmark sex discrimination case in the airline industry. From a young age, she loved aviation, but gave up on that dream in her teens when her father told her, “You can’t be an airline pilot darling, they don’t hire ladies.” She thought becoming a flight attendant would be the next best thing. However, she claims it was not a career at the time; it was more of a transition between graduating college and finding “Mr. Right.” Roads wasn’t much interested in finding a Mr. Right, and preferred to stay with the airline.

When airlines began imposing age limits on flight stewardesses and forcing women out at age 32, she became frustrated. In an interview with PBS, Roads said,

It made me angry, it really did. It violated my sense of fair play. The pilots could work until age 60 and we were fired at age 32. Something was wrong there. It just violated my midwestern core value of fair play.”

“[These rules] were in place when I joined the airline in 1950. And it was a real strange thing, but we accepted the fact that we were fired when we got married. They expected women to get fat and ugly when they got married and had babies. They felt you wouldn’t devote as much attention to the job as you should. Pilots – men — could be married, but it was different for a woman.”

The airlines wanted to sell the image of a young, single girl that would appeal to male passengers. However, Roads wasn’t buying it. She became a union officer in LA, then a national officer, and soon wanted to become an advocate for all flight attendants. “Finally,” she said, “I was interested in all women. And now I’m interested in humanity.”  In July 1965, Roads and her fellow stewardesses were at the doorstep of the Equal Opportunities Employment Commission (EEOC). By 1968, the EEOC issued a ruling prohibiting age ceilings or marriage bans in the airline industry.

Women’s History Month Trivia

by Matiara Huff

Question 5: Who is the first African-American woman to lead an S&P 500 company and currently serves as a founding board director of ‘Change the Equation’?

Ursula Burns

By U.S. Government Printing Office [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Ursula Burns was the first black women to become the CEO of a fortune 500 company. She became CEO of Xerox in July 2009 until December 2016. In 2014 Forbes rated her the 22nd most powerful women in the world. Though both of her parents were Panamanian immigrants, she was raised by her mother alone in a housing project in New York.

Her career at Xerox began as a summer internship which turned into a permanent position a year later when she finished her master’s degree at Columbia University. In January 1990, she became an executive assistant to a then senior executive. In June 1991, she became the executive assistant to then chairman and chief executive Paul Allaire. In 1999 she became vice president for global manufacturing. In May 2000, she became senior vice president of corporate strategic services where she worked closely with soon to be CEO Anne Mulcahy. They both described it as a true partnership.

Since she finished working at Xerox, Burns has become a founding Board Member of Change the Equation, which is an organization working to improve STEM-based education.

Women’s History Month Trivia

by Ann Varner

Who was the first woman stockbroker who demanded and got the right to join her male trainees on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange?

Answer: Norma Yaegar

Norma Yaeger was born in 1930 in New York City. As most women did in the 1950’s, Norma married young and started a family right away. She relied on her husband to support their family. When Norma’s husband lost his job, Norma decided she wanted to work in stock exchange and enrolled in the Hornblower and Weeks Inc. stockbroker training program in 1962. Not only was Norma the first woman to graduate a stockbroker training program, Norma fought to have equal pay as well as walk on the New York Stock Exchange floor – was the first woman to do so. Norma remarried after her divorce and moved to California. In 1981, she started her own brokerage firm, Yaeger Securities. She had licenses with many different exchanges. If you are interested in knowing more about this trailblazing woman, she has written a book called “Breaking Down the Walls.