Powerful women flex their muscles

Hundreds of women have gathered in Philadelphia this week for Vision 2020, a conference about finding ways to overcome barriers to women’s equality.

“Women earn 80 cents for every dollar men earn. Women of color earn 62 cents,” said Vision 2020 co-chair Lynn Yeakel, a top medical official at Drexel University and a longtime Main Line leader. “This wage gap costs the average working woman $700,000 to $2 million over her lifetime.”

At the same time, the National Constitutional Center has opened a new exhibit about women’s equality in conjunction with the Congress.

“This exhibition was created to inform the public about women’s history, which is often only a slim chapter in American history books,” Yeakel said.

Rosemary Greco, who rose from secretary to president of CoreStates Bank, says the conference plans a 10-year effort to increase the amount of women in leadership positions. “Three percent of Fortune 500 CEOs are women. Despite the influence of Sarah Palin and Nancy Pelosi, there are only six women governors and 17 percent of Congress is women,” Greco said.

Medicine woman

Jane Seymour, accompanied by her son Sean Flynn, was thrilled to come to Philadelphia for Drexel College of Medicine. She said, “My character [in] ‘Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman,’ went to school at the predecessor school to Drexel, Women’s Medical College of Pennsylvania. ‘Dr. Quinn’ still plays on television every day in the United States and 89 countries. Women come up to me all the time and credit my character with convincing them to be a doctor.”