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In Celebration of Women

March is Women’s History Month, a time when we celebrate the amazing women and their contributions to society, culture, and economies around the world. These heroes include Marie Curie who founded the field of radioactivity, Marie Van Brittan Brown who invented closed circuit television, and Ada Lovelace the first computer programmer.

These stories remind me that each of us have important women in our own lives who have paved the way and lit the path before us, allowing us to access positions of influence and authority in our communities and in the workplace.

As a solo parent, civic leader, and woman in tech I know too well the struggles many of us face in balancing career and community. I am grateful for two extraordinary women who have been instrumental in my own life. The first is my mother, Joy. She is one of ten children from a Tennessee share-cropping farming family. Her belly laughs and bright spirit bely the scars she carries on her hands and in her heart. My mother was the only one of those ten who made her way out of her small town in East Tennessee and also out of the cycle of poverty. While she did not finish high school, she did earn both an agent’s and broker’s license in real estate and owned what was-once the largest antique store in the Southeast. She was the first person to teach me the value of finding a way and her (albeit sometimes annoyed) assertion that “of course you can” rings in my head any time I begin to doubt myself.

The second incredible woman in my life is my daughter, who turned 20 this year – the age I was when I brought her into the world on my own, uneducated, afraid, and alone. Being Haley’s mom has heralded every important accomplishment of my personal and professional life. She came into this world and inspired (errrr ... completely scared the living daylights out of...) 20-year old me. I had to quickly figure out how to be my best self so I could help her do the same.

That meant working full-time and attending school full-time as a solo parent. She was a toddler during my undergrad and a teenager in my graduate studies. It meant seeing and seeking to understand ideas and experiences that I had not previously considered in an effort to learn how to ready her to walk through the world as a bi-racial, lesbian.

It means recognizing today that I can’t fully know all those things. But I can help. That’s what I have the great privilege of doing in my work as a Learning Scientist, in my community service as a civic leader in Atlanta, and in my allyship to those I know and love.

My daughter continues to inspire me with her bravery, her kindness, her grit, and her commitment to making the world a better place. She now lives in Prague where she is completing her undergraduate degree in politics and  works as a project coordinator for You:Flourish, a behavioral health initiative of Envision:You aimed at the LGBTQ+ community. She shows me every day what it means to Strive for Excellence and reminds me why it’s so important that we do so with intent, honoring the women who came before us and lighting the path for those who are coming next. 

I am who I am and where I am today because of two remarkable women, and I am honored to work for an amazing organization who celebrates the work of women like myself. It enables us to participate fully and equally in both the unique space in tech that our founder has created and also in our lives outside of work as partners, parents, allies, and friends. It empowers us to belong – as womxn, as professionals, as people and as equals.


Sara Henderson is the Learning & Development Program Manager at Calendly. She holds a Masters of Science in Adult Education from the State University of New York and is WSET Level 1 certified in wine and spirits education. She is mom to one amazing human and two adorable cats. She lives in Atlanta where she has been honored to serve her community through Hands on Atlanta’s TeamWorks! Program and as a 2022 Civic Fellow.



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