This September, ACP Advisory Council member Martha Johnson hosted a group of women Mentors and Protégés at her Annapolis home. ACP Protégé and attendee Adrianne Griffith offers her review of the event:
As a relatively new member of ACP, I was excited to open my email one morning and find this message:
“Dear Adrianne: As a member of ACP's Women's Program community, I would like to invite you to an exclusive networking opportunity hosted by Martha Johnson at her Annapolis home…”
Join a group of women from the D.C. area to network and connect outside of work (or, in my case, school)? Sign me up!
Whenever I have the opportunity to build and grow in a community, especially with other women, I try to take full advantage of it. I invited another woman veteran from my graduate school program to go with me, and we headed off to Annapolis on the evening of September 12th.
What we found at the gathering was a diverse group of women, all current ACP Mentors and Protégés, who have an infectious passion for building others up. In addition to the typical introductory information (you know: name, where are you from, what brought you here), Martha posed the question: how can we bring more women into ACP? Turns out, this was the perfect audience to ask. Suggestions ranged from putting up flyers at local bases, to forming connections with influential social media groups, to partnering with the Transition Assistance Programs (TAP) of every service. Each idea garnered support as women around the room voiced their encouragement—the energy was high, and everyone was obviously invested in helping to grow this community.
The discussion about how to get more women involved continued well after the formal introductions concluded. Women who had similar ideas met up around the table to talk about how they could implement their ideas. Martha made the rounds, listening and engaging as the designs grew. Upon looking at watches, we were all surprised at how quickly the time had flown. We exchanged phone numbers and LinkedIn profiles, determined to stay connected with this new group of women allies.
I know I’m not the only one looking forward to our next gathering, whenever and whatever that might be.
Graduate Student, Georgetown University