Ladies Who Lunch - Learn about Nutrition


Wednesday, January 11, 2017
12 p.m.  
Room: Lewis & Clark

Carmen Berry is the nutritionist for Executive Dining, our new building cafeteria vendor.  As a registered dietitian, Carmen has huge input on what items are on the daily menu.

Carmen will be joining us to provide information, advice, tips and guidance on the subject of nutrition and answer any questions that we might have. 

Carmen will be available after our lunchtime gathering to speak privately with you individually, or to set up a separate meeting with her on another day.

Please join us!

Holiday basket raffle nets $143 for 100 Neediest

EWN raised $143 for the 100 Neediest Families with the Holiday Basket Raffle in November.

The winner was Cheryl Winkelmann. Congrats, Cheryl! 


EWN also had eight people join as new members during our recruitment drive.  Welcome to our newest members: 

Lisa Bushey

Maria Broeker

Penny Dietrich

Angie Roloff

Karen Crawford

Shelly Hayden

Nancy O’Brien

Marge Pickett

Sage seeking new set of writers

Dear STL Elsevier Women’s Network members,

The time has come to pass the torch of the EWN quarterly newsletter, Sage, to a new group of members. We have enjoyed writing articles to share with you over the past year, but as our staff has dwindled and our work has required extra dedication of time, we feel it is best to pass along Sage to new hands.

If you would like to be part of the newsletter/website crew, please email Diane Ericson ( or Karen Clarke ( The newsletter and website ( can evolve into whatever we need it to be, so please feel free to be creative. We also have a Facebook page that you will be able to utilize for EWN news.

Thank you for understanding our transition. We look forward to seeing you at future EWN events!

All the best,

Samantha Dalton, Kayla Mugler, and Kathleen Nahm

She Learns: Women and Retirement

RELX has partnered with Empower Retirement, a retirement services provider based in Kansas City. On October 5, Rebecca Noordhoek, Retirement Education Counselor with Empower Retirement, presented the need-to-know nuts and bolts of the RELX 401(k) plans. She emphasized the importance of retirement planning for women: on average, women earn less and live longer.

Noordhoek explained the basics of Elsevier employee investments. The default plan is a target date fund (e.g. LifePath Index) based on your retirement year. It is professionally managed to start out with higher risk and gradually become more conservative to protect your investments as you near retirement. BlackRock explains more about target date funds here

Noordhoek also encouraged listeners to log in to use the new financial planner and updated website. We’ve done a walkthrough and provided some simple tips below.

Tips for using Empower’s Online Tools

  • Access your retirement plan and the financial planner at or
  • The revamped retirement website estimates your retirement income, based on factors such as your current balance and potential future contributions. Sliding bars help you compare potential savings based on contribution rates and retirement ages. The tool breaks out your retirement income sources into three categories:
  1. Personal savings
  2. Employer contributions
  3. Social security
  • See how you stack up to your peers’ savings goals by clicking How do I compare.
  • Me & My Money offers help in four areas: spending, saving, investing, and protecting. You can create a budget, learn the basics of investing, and gain access to helpful financial takeaway tips.
  • Click the Guidance tab at the top of the page to access advice and professional management programs.
  • While you’re online, register your Social Security account at to receive important information via email.
Rebecca Noordhoek, Retirement Education Counselor with Empower Retirement

Rebecca Noordhoek, Retirement Education Counselor with Empower Retirement

Raffle Baskets and Bake Sale to benefit Teri Griege's "Powered By Hope" Foundation

On September 14th, the EWN is raffling two amazing baskets to raise money for Teri Griege’s “Powered by Hope” Foundation, which is dedicated to provide hope, strength, peace, and education to cancer patients. One of the baskets is designed to put you in the mood for Fall, with a cozy blanket, pumpkin spice, and much more; the other is filled with plenty of healthy, delicious food that your body will thank you for.


The EWN is also hosting a bake sale to raise additional funds for Teri’s Foundation. Please use your RE Cares time and sign up here, or donate a baked good. Thank you for your support!

Upcoming Events - September & October

See the Events page for more details on each event.

-          EWN Motivational Speaker Teri Griege - Wednesday, September 14, 2016. 10:00-11:00AM, Café Meeting Room.

-          Webinar - 10 Ways Building Gender Partnerships Ignites Your Career – Wednesday, September 21, 2016. 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM. Location TBD.

-          EWN Ladies Who Lunch  - Wednesday, September 28, 2016. 12:00 - 1:00pm. Lewis and Clark.

-          Women and Retirement - Wednesday, October 5, 2016. 12:00-1:00pm. Café Meeting Room.

-          EWN Ladies Who Lunch  - Wednesday, October 19, 2016. 12:00 - 1:00pm. Lewis and Clark.

She Empowers: Women and Retirement

12:00 – 1:00 PM, October 5th, Café Meeting Room

 In EWN’s last “Ladies Who Lunch” meeting, retirement, and our anxieties surrounding it, were discussed. It was interesting to hear everyone’s perspective as there was a range of ages and personal experiences.

 For some of the younger members just starting out in their careers, retirement is a long way off. It’s difficult to focus on saving when paying off student loans seems never-ending. Buying a house, starting a family, or simply managing expenses takes time and energy. Thinking about retiring, investing, and finances for years and years in the future is incredibly daunting. For those with children, finances are easily swallowed up by extra-curricular activities, child care, and college expenses.

 There are always things that need a part of our paycheck, and retirement savings sometimes doesn't have priority.

 We also talked about those of us who have spouses who manage retirement planning and the household finances in general.

 Karen admitted that her husband manages all household finances and, at one point, was giving her a $20 bill on Sunday to spend for the week. She was happy with the arrangement as she was frequently traveling and he was caring for their children. It made sense for their family. But, she knew that if she was on her own, she would not know where to start regarding her financial position.

 Other women in the meeting said that they manage the household finances themselves, but they wish their partner would do more to help. It’s a big responsibility. Other women in the meeting said that they manage the finances themselves with some wishing that their partner would do more to help in that regard, as it is stressful to handle alone. Some of our members are single and don’t have someone to support or give advice to their financial decisions, and they don’t know where to even begin. Other members have spoken of a change in their domestic circumstances which has forced them to take ownership of their financial future.

 Retirement planning is scary because, for many of us, it is completely new territory. That’s where the EWN comes in.  The discussions revealed a common theme of retirement planning ignorance, and with that, fear.  While we are all at different stages in our careers and we all have different challenges and circumstances regarding our retirement, we all agreed that we need information. To learn is to empower ourselves. Learning about how to effectively plan for retirement will give us confidence out our choices and free us from a lot of anxiety surrounding it.

 Members who are closer to retirement than others attest that it all catches up so quickly. One minute you are starting out in your career, fresh out of college, and the next minute you are planning to travel the world in your RV and visit grandchildren. It’s never too early!

 Karen worked with Kyle Baxter in Human Resources to find a valuable resource that would come to the St. Louis office and speak to us, as a group of women, about retirement. We sought an organization that would speak to us in understandable, practical language, and nurture a safe environment where we can ask questions and share our own experiences.

On October 5th we have “Empower Retirement” from Kansas City coming into our site to give us a presentation called “Women and Retirement”. With Open Enrollment coming up in mid-October, the timing is such that you will have fresh information to help make your selections.

 Please join us on October 5th at 12:00 to 1:00 pm in the Café Meeting room with Empower Retirement and Human Resources. Learn how to take charge of your retirement planning and build your financial awareness. After the session, our presenter will be happy to take questions and HR will be available for any Elsevier specific questions.

 Please contact Diane Ericson or Karen Clarke for the invite.


She Leads: The time to be brave is now

By Kathleen Nahm

Reshma Saujani

Reshma Saujani

Women - Be bold and brave. Don’t worry about always trying to be perfect in life.

This was the message Reshma Saujani decided to take to heart as she thrust her life in a new direction and ran for Congress against a popular incumbent in her New York district in 2010. Before this moment, Saujani had worked as a fundraiser and organizer. Her opposing congresswoman had been in her seat since 1992, but Saujani wanted to try and make a difference.

Saujani’s pollsters told her she was crazy to run, but she decided to do it anyway, received endorsements, and was determined to win. On election day she only received 19 percent of the vote. She was told she wasted $1.3 million of her campaign, according to some of the same papers that endorsed her. However, she was 33 years old and said this was the first time in her entire life she had done something truly courageous, and didn’t worry about being perfect. After this experience she was excited to spread this message of being brave through public service.

Saujani told her story during a Technology, Entertainment and Design (TED) talk. She began by noting many women gravitate toward careers they know they’ll be great in. Saujani said this starts in childhood in society today, as most girls are taught to play it safe, while boys are taught to play rough and swing high.

“Boys are taught to take risk after risk and are rewarded for it,” Saujani said. “We are raising our girls to be perfect and we are raising our boys to be brave.”

She was concerned about this “bravery deficit” as women are underrepresented in countless fields in the workforce. However, she also realized the difference can come down to how boys and girls approach a challenge. She provided the example of a study that showed men, in general, would apply for a job if they met only 60 percent of the qualifications, but women would only apply if they met 100 percent of the qualifications.

“This study is usually invoked as evidence that, well, women need a little more confidence, but I think that it’s evidence that women have been socialized to aspire to perfection and they’re overly cautious,” Saujani said.

She expounded, saying that even when women are leaning in and being ambitious, the socialization of perfection has caused women to take fewer risks in their careers, and in particular, they are missing out on the computing and technology jobs which are open today. Saujani stressed that because women are being left behind in tech, this also causes the economy to fall behind.

In 2012, Saujani founded Girls Who Code to help close the gender gap within computer science.

“What I’ve found is by teaching them to code, I socialized them to be brave,” Saujani said.

Girls Who Code teaches young women that coding is an endless process of trial and error. Saujani explained that all the Girls Who Code teachers would tell her the same story - A student would say she didn’t know what to write, but if the teacher were to press “undo” a few times, they would discover that the student came close, but she didn’t get it exactly right. Saujani concluded that the girls would rather show nothing than the progress they made, or as she put it - “Perfection or bust.”

“It’s not enough just to teach them to code. We have to combine this with a sisterhood that lets girls know they aren’t alone. When we teach girls to be brave, and we have a supportive network cheering them on, they will build incredible things, and I see this every day.”

Saujani gave the example of a 16-year-old girl who wrote an algorithm to check if a cancer was benign or malignant because her dad had cancer. She insisted that the girls within the program would not surrender their dreams.

“We cannot wait for them to be brave like I did, when I was 33 years old, we have to teach them to be brave in school and early in their careers when it has the most potential to impact their lives and the lives of others. We have to show them they will be loved and accepted not for being perfect, but for being courageous.”

Saujani called on her audience members to encourage every woman they knew to be comfortable with imperfection.

“When we teach girls to be imperfect and we help them leverage it, we will build a movement of young women who are brave and who will build a better world for themselves and each and every one of us.”


Reshma Saujani aims to enroll 40,000 young women in Girls Who Code by the end of 2016 and has won support from Google, Twitter, Facebook and AT&T. Her goal is to enroll one million young women in the free program by 2020. Saujani is also the author of the 2013 book Women Who Don't Wait In Line: Break The Mold, Lead The Way.


  1. TED is a nonpartisan nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks. TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics — from science to business to global issues — in more than 110 languages.
  2. Reshma  Saujani’s TED talk via NPR:


She Learns: The second wave of feminism in America

Part two of a four part series

I am continuing to explore the history of feminism and its movements in America. To see a brief history of the first wave of feminism, read here:

The second wave feminist movement more closely resembles today’s connotations of “women’s rights” than it did during the first wave, which ended when the 19th Amendment was passed. While the first wave focused on suffrage, the second wave focused on issues in women’s lives, particularly regarding severe workplace and educational inequalities, divorce and custody rights, and awareness about domestic violence and marital rape.

 A post-WWII America idealized the nuclear family and domestic life, placing women in the home to clean the house and raise the kids, but married women had no legal right to control property or a to divorce without proof of a husband’s wrongdoing.  While mainstream culture perpetuated the picture-perfect image of the happy housewife (such as Leave it to Beaver and I Love Lucy) the picket-fenced 1950s was stifling and unfulfilling for most women. There was one path, one option: get married in your early 20s, start having children, and be a homemaker. In 1960, 38% of women in the US worked, mostly limited to being a teacher, a nurse, or a secretary. Women comprised 6% of doctors, 3% of lawyers, and less than 1% of engineers.

The second wave began with two events. The first was the establishment of the Presidential Commission on the Status of Women by President Kennedy, chaired by Eleanor Roosevelt, in 1961. This committee’s purpose was to advise the President on issues concerning the status of women. Not surprisingly, the committee reported discrimination against women in every aspect of American life. They advised the President on issues such as fair hiring practices, paid maternity leave, and affordable childcare.   

second wave fem.jpg

The second event was the 1962 publication of the bestselling book, The Feminine Mystique by Betty Friedan. Friedan was inspired by a French writer, Simone de Beauvoir, who wrote about the male-centered society which treated women as second to men since they were capable of getting pregnant. Beauvoir’s work was translated to English and published in 1953, laying the groundwork for the second movement. Friedan’s book articulated how college-educated women felt trapped as housewives with no opportunities. This was the first time a major work argued that not all women were content with being housewives, speaking against the idyllic, domestic life of the 1950s. This book propelled women to form groups and organizations that supported legal action – including the Equal Pay Act of 1963 (attempting to abolish the pay gap), and the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (attempting to abolish discrimination based on race, religion, gender – but was initially weakly enforced). In 1966, Betty Friedan founded the National Organization for Women (NOW) which promoted workplace equality for women by lobbying Congress and publicizing issues.

Other notable events include the release of FDA approved oral contraceptive (the Pill) in 1961, which made it possible for women to have careers without having to leave due to unexpected pregnancy – inspiring a new wave of female professionals in the 1970s. In 1964, the first women’s shelter was opened in California due to rising awareness of domestic violence. Also in California, Governor Reagan signed the first “no-fault” divorce law in 1970, so women could obtain divorces without needing proof of fault of one party in the marriage. Prior to this law, divorce could be granted if one, and only one, spouse proved the other had committed adultery, a felony, etc.

Once NOW was formed, there were many significant legal actions that resulted. NOW was not only lobbying Congress, they were publicizing to the media about domestic violence and spousal rape. Through local journals, they were expanding the consciousness of what it was to be female in a male-dominated society. Ordinary women were now having conversations about personal issues important to their daily lives – how to raise their children and have a career, how to handle the pressure of being the perfect wife depicted on television and in advertisements, and so on. These small conversations were developing a widespread consciousness, and their common struggles became more obvious problems within the social structure with laws made without women in mind.

In 1967, an Executive Order provided full affirmative action rights to women, and there were many landmark laws against educational discrimination of women into the mid-1970s. Two notable court cases include Reed v. Reed in 1971which ruled that administrators of estates cannot discriminate between the sexes, and Roe v. Wade in 1973. In 1975, US military academies were required to admit women.

Women protesting at 1968 Miss America Pageant.

Women protesting at 1968 Miss America Pageant.

In 1978, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act was enacted, and marital rape was criminalized in some states, but not fully outlawed until 1993. Alongside these legal changes was also a women’s health movement underway with a goal to improve health care for all women, and an increased ownership regarding their own reproductive health. The existing healthcare was sometimes insensitive and uninformative with issues specific to women’s health. Activists determined to educate other women set up classes and clinics. The book Our Bodies, Ourselves was published in 1970 and became an underground success.

Gloria Steinham, a freelance journalist, became one of the most influential figures in the movement after her article “After Black Power, Women’s Liberation” published in 1968. She strongly advocated the proposed Constitutional Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), endorsed by NOW, which failed to ratify in all states in 1979.  This was largely due to Phyllis Schlafly’s fierce opposition as she vocally opposed women also being drafted into the military. She defended traditional gender roles and opposed equal treatment among the sexes. The working class also opposed the amendment, claiming that women needed special protection with hours and working conditions. The other major legislative defeat was President Nixon’s veto of the Comprehensive Child Development Bill in 1972, a multibillion dollar federal day care program.

Like the first wave, the second wave was divided – Betty Friedan wanted it to be accepted and respected in society, not wanting to be associated with more radical (“bra-burning”) feminists such as Steinham. The FBI also considered feminists as a challenge to American values and part of the enemy – no joke. They linked them to other extremist movements and paid female informants to infiltrate the women’s movement. Naturally, this made activists suspicious and paranoid, but didn’t alter the progress of the movement.

The second wave is considered a huge success as it changed  much of society’s attitudes toward women, abolished legal gender oppression, and integrated women in organizations previously dominated by only men (such as colleges, the military, and political leadership positions). The movement largely ignored the issues of women who were not white, middle-class and above, and heterosexual. I do not think the second wave failed to acknowledge other demographics as much as the first wave did, as feminists often aligned with the other social movements of its time – such as anti-war and civil rights groups. “Women’s struggle is class struggle” was many feminists’ mantra, asserting that race, class, and gender oppression are intertwined.  

In the wake of the second wave of feminism, women aren’t battling oppressive laws as often, but there is still a pay gap – women, on average, earn 77 cents to a man’s dollar. Only 14% of top executives are women. Only 4.1% of directors of top-grossing movies were women from 2002-2014, and that number is even more dismal for minorities. Only 33% of physicians in the US are women. It goes on and on – but the more the consciousness of these disparities grows, and the more we make efforts to educate and fix these problems, I have hopes that it will only improve.











She Leads: Diversity and the EWN

On January 27, Senior Human Resources Business Partner Kyle Baxter joined the EWN for 2016’s first Ladies Who Lunch hour.

Baxter, who has spent a decade in Elsevier’s HR department, detailed the 2015 Diversity Plan to attendees. Its focus areas include the following:

  • Recruitment and Promotion
  • Leadership Development
  • Equal Pay
  • Flexible Working
  • Company Culture

Descriptions and rationales are included here.

The plan is a result of Elsevier’s partnership with EDGE (Economic Dividends for Gender Equality). As an EDGE-certified organization, Elsevier is subject to a regular audit. The company was audited in January 2016 and attained first-level EDGE Assess certification, which will be revisited in two years. EDGE defines the requirements in this way:     

“The company makes a public commitment to a strong gender balance across the talent pipeline, to pay equity, to a solid framework of gender equality policies and practices as well as to an inclusive workplace culture as reflected by high engagement levels of both male and female employees. At the same time, the company identifies the parameters of a concrete action plan to further its progress.”

Read more about the levels of certification here.

Reed Elsevier employees are encouraged to “think globally and act locally” in their offices with respect to diversity, inclusion, and other ethical issues. Baxter and other HR leaders discern how we can collaborate and build momentum, and he believes that the St. Louis office is leading the way in its diversification of race, gender, religion, and sexual orientation. For example, our site is 66% female. One way that Elsevier fosters the inclusion and advancement of women is through 29 Women in Technology sponsorships across the US, a professional association that facilitates networking and career development.

How can we engage?

We’re eager to increase and maintain diversity in our office and globally. We want the EWN to be a sounding board for issues of inclusion and acceptance—and not just in regard to gender. Share what you see, and let’s talk about how to foster diversity. We’d love to facilitate these discussions at our Ladies Who Lunch events.

Furthermore, Baxter encourages all Elsevier employees to elevate communications around diversity topics. Our input is valuable. Talk to your boss and your boss’s boss about what you can do to support diversity initiatives throughout Elsevier.

She Mentors: Spotlight on a New EWN Member

By Samantha Dalton

Heather Yocum came to Elsevier in November 2014 as a Content Development Specialist and has recently joined the rebooted Elsevier Women’s Network. Heather first heard about Big Brothers Big Sisters in high school but was unable to volunteer because of other commitments. After she graduated college, she began to consider volunteering again and realized she had the time and heart to put into it.

She has been involved with the Big Brothers Big Sisters organization since January 2011 when she was matched with her first “little.” Unfortunately that little was older and got busy with friends and ended up leaving the program. In December 2011, she was matched with her current little sister, Cameron. Cameron is now 15 years old and she and Heather will be celebrating five years of friendship this year!

Heather and Her Little Sister, Cameron at a "be there" event.

Heather and Her Little Sister, Cameron at a "be there" event.

Heather’s favorite part of Big Brothers Big Sisters is, not surprisingly, the bond that she has formed with her little sister. Cameron and Heather plan outings at least twice a month to see each other but also stay in constant contact, so they’ve become very close. Having just a brother, Heather feels like Cameron has really become like a little sister to her and she finds supporting and caring about our local youth very rewarding. Cameron also finds this friendship rewarding because she has an older friend to help guide and encourage her as she grows up.

In addition to the big/little program, Big Brothers Big Sisters also organizes events for volunteers to participate in. Big Brothers Big Sisters has an ongoing theme of “Be There” which led Heather and her little to volunteer for the Tour de Francis Park where they helped youth racers sign in for the bike racing event. Cameron and Heather have also volunteered at other events including Earth Day and have run races together to raise money for The Color Run and Kilometers for Chris.

Recently, Heather and members of the EWN organized a donation at Elsevier for another BBBS event, Diva for a Day. Diva for a Day is an event where high-school age “little” sisters get to select a dress, accessories, hair style, and makeup for prom. I personally had so much fun gathering items to donate for this event and there was a great turnout for donations from Elsevier of around $400 in value!

I hope that Elsevier can continue to be involved with this great organization. There are many littles still waiting to be matched, some dealing with poverty, emotional hardships, and so on, who are in need of mentors. If you or your children would like to be a part of Big Brothers Big Sisters, please visit to apply to become a big or for other volunteering opportunities!

She Cares: Emily Ogle harnesses group efforts of Elsevier, EWN to support victims of sex trafficking

By Kathleen Nahm

The Covering House is a non-profit organization, founded in 2010 in St. Louis, which provides refuge to children and teens who have experienced sexual trafficking or sexual exploitation.

Emily Ogle, a senior producer in Elsevier’s Global Multimedia Department, has been volunteering for The Covering House through RE Cares since 2011. Ogle also joined Elsevier Women’s Network in 2011 and began engaging EWN’s members with the organization at this time.

Emily ogle.

Emily ogle.

She first became interested in The Covering House’s mission after realizing someone she knew most likely had been a victim of human trafficking.

“They didn’t talk to anyone and were often picked up by a man. This made it personal for me,” Ogle said. “Anyone could become the victim if they’d been in the wrong place at the wrong time. I started helping with fundraising activities then involved the Elsevier Women’s Network to increase man-power.”

As noted on its website, The Covering House “provides refuge and restoration, using the least restrictive environment, for sexually exploited and trafficked children and teens, providing safety, dignity, and freedom utilizing top level staffing and oversight.”

“People (at Elsevier) seem to be aware and know what it’s about. It’s been a very rewarding experience,” Ogle said.

In total, Ogle has helped raise around $20,000 for The Covering House through fundraising events and grants in partnership with Elsevier. These grants, provided through the RE Cares Committee, are awarded twice a year. In 2014, the grant helped provide $11,000 to The Covering House and an additional $2,500 was raised. Ogle worked with a representative from the organization to submit the RE Cares grant application.

Ogle’s dedication to The Covering House was honored when she received a Recognising Those Who Care Award from Elsevier’s RELX Group in 2014. These awards are designed to celebrate the achievements of employees who have gone above and beyond for RE Cares.

The Recognising Those Who Care delegation, consisting of representatives from Elsevier, Lexis-Nexis, Book Aid International, and EISERVI in Limbe, Cameroon, in November 2014.

The Recognising Those Who Care delegation, consisting of representatives from Elsevier, Lexis-Nexis, Book Aid International, and EISERVI in Limbe, Cameroon, in November 2014.

RELX employees recognized that year had the opportunity to travel to Cameroon with Book Aid International. They met with beneficiaries of RE Care’s work, visited libraries, and participated in reading workshops with school children.

“It was fun,” Ogle said. “I didn’t mind doing the work at all. You meet like-minded people too.”

Delegates from Elsevier, EISERVI, and Book Aid International added carpet, shelves, books, and painted bright colors throughout a Children’s Corner in Limbe, Cameroon. Emily Ogle visited Cameroon with this group in 2014. 

Delegates from Elsevier, EISERVI, and Book Aid International added carpet, shelves, books, and painted bright colors throughout a Children’s Corner in Limbe, Cameroon. Emily Ogle visited Cameroon with this group in 2014. 

Back in St. Louis, her fundraising efforts for The Covering House continued. Some of her favorite fundraising activities included book fairs. A recent book fair raised $750. She noted bake sales are also good fundraising opportunities.

The Covering House’s Race for Refuge is another awareness fundraiser, which includes a 5K walk/run and a 10K run at Tower Grove Park. During her time volunteering at the Race for Refuge, Ogle filled race packets for runners, distributed T-shirts, served on the race committee, and coordinated social media efforts. She said she aims to establish a running team for 2016’s race in August.

“I’m good at fundraising and getting people involved. I’m always willing to help out whenever they need it,” Ogle said. “They continue to grow and get visibility and are coming up with more fundraising events. It’s easier to do a fundraiser when you all have a common goal.”

A teacher (left) talks to a racer (right) about her experience working with the girls The Covering House has rescued at a fundraising event, Race for Refuge, on Aug. 31, 2015. 

A teacher (left) talks to a racer (right) about her experience working with the girls The Covering House has rescued at a fundraising event, Race for Refuge, on Aug. 31, 2015. 

Ogle enjoys other volunteer opportunities through RE Cares and has been involved in organizations and activities such as Connections to Success, a fashion show for Parkinson’s disease, a Multiple Sclerosis Society bike ride, St. Louis Zoo events, Stray Rescue, and book fairs.

“I’m always keeping my eye out for something different,” Ogle said.

She hopes to continue volunteering with The Covering House for years to come.  

“It’s been nice for me to see them grow and grow so quickly. When I started volunteering they had nothing. Now they have a house, a storage facility, administrative offices, and the staff has grown,” Ogle said. “They have so many different resources. In five years they’ve made a lot of progress and helped a lot of girls.”

If interested in volunteering for The Covering House, please contact Ogle directly at, or visit The Covering House website at The Covering House is also on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, and accepts online donations.  

She Says: Fighting the wage gap, in Hollywood and beyond

by Jacqueline Coffman

In the October edition of Lenny, a fresh and quirky newsletter published by actresses/feministas Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner, Jennifer Lawrence contributed a letter titled “Why Do I Make Less Than My Male Co-Stars?”

Some backstory: in 2014, Sony Pictures Entertainment was hacked, likely by a North Korean group angry about the upcoming release of a controversial film, The Interview, whose premise included the assassination of Kim Jong-un. With this hack, confidential data was released to the general public, including unreleased films, personal information about Sony employees and their families, and hundreds of thousands of emails – including those that contained salary figures. It was through this hack that Lawrence discovered the disparity in compensation with her male co-stars for the film American Hustle.

Lawrence doesn’t dig into the numbers in her letter because that’s not really the point she’s trying to make, but I will here because I think looking at this issue quantitatively is important. The discrepancy was mainly tied to “points,” or back-end compensation on the film. The breakdown is as follows:

  • Jeremy Renner: 9%
  • Bradley Cooper: 9%
  • Christian Bale: 9%
  • David O. Russell (director): 9%
  • Jennifer Lawrence: 7%
  • Amy Adams: 7%

Note the gender disparity: 7% to 9%. Don’t bother reaching for your calculator, I’ll do the math for you – the women are earning 77.8% of what the men are. Does that number look familiar? According to the White House, women who work full-time in the United States currently make, on average, 77% of what men do for similar jobs. (Hollywood suddenly looks a lot closer to home.)

The inquisitive title of Lawrence's letter - "Why do I Make Less Than My Male Co-Stars?" - doesn't truly receive an answer, but I wanted to explore it because I found it striking that she does not focus on Sony’s practices, but on herself and how she wanted to be perceived during negotiations.

“I didn’t get mad at Sony. I got mad at myself. I failed as a negotiator because I gave up early. I didn’t want to keep fighting over millions of dollars that, frankly, due to two franchises, I don’t need. (I told you it wasn’t relatable, don’t hate me).

 But if I’m honest with myself, I would be lying if I didn’t say there was an element of wanting to be liked that influenced my decision to close the deal without a real fight. I didn’t want to seem “difficult” or “spoiled.” At the time, that seemed like a fine idea, until I saw the payroll on the Internet and realized every man I was working with definitely didn’t worry about being “difficult” or “spoiled.” This could be a young-person thing. It could be a personality thing. I’m sure it’s both. But this is an element of my personality that I’ve been working against for years, and based on the statistics, I don’t think I’m the only woman with this issue. Are we socially conditioned to behave this way? We’ve only been able to vote for what, 90 years? I’m seriously asking — my phone is on the counter and I’m on the couch, so a calculator is obviously out of the question. Could there still be a lingering habit of trying to express our opinions in a certain way that doesn’t “offend” or “scare” men?”

Lawrence asks some really great questions, and her fears of being perceived as “spoiled” aren’t unfounded. In the hack, it was revealed that top execs, while negotiating with Angelina Jolie, sent emails back and forth referring to her as a “brat.” Lawrence closes out her letter by saying, “For some reason, I just can’t picture someone saying that about a man.”

Lawrence’s focus on herself and on her own role in negotiating is, to me, inspiring. It brings the locus of control back to us, to the women as negotiators. It makes me think about how we can initiate these discussions with our managers, do our research and be fully informed when entering the room, and confidently speak up for what is deserved rather than smiling and nodding and accepting the opening offer, what Lawrence deemed “giving up early.”

Of course, there are myriad reasons for the gender wage gap. Negotiating more confidently and worrying less about how we’re perceived for doing so isn’t going to solve this multifaceted problem, but it’s a step in the right direction.

For another take on negotiations, check out this article from a previous issue of our newsletter.



She Learns: How to shadow other departments

by Samantha Dalton

At a recent team meeting, a team member absently brought up how interesting it would be to shadow colleagues from other departments in Elsevier. All of my team members agreed excitedly and my manager then explained that this practice was in place a few years ago but that the program had trailed off since then. She spoke with her manager about getting this program back in place and making this opportunity available again, and her idea was quickly approved.

First my team members and I let our manager know which department we wanted to shadow, and she then reached out to the managers of that department letting them know about our interest. All of us chose to shadow the Marketing Department, but feel free to choose whatever department interests you.

Our shadowers then contacted us to set up a time to meet and talk. My manager advised us to come prepared with questions. It’s important to know what you want out of your experience because you’re going to get out of it what you put in.

We all had our initial meetings with our shadowers and learned a lot of general information about what they do every day. A few of us were further invited to come to various meetings (including an author meeting and a planning meeting for an upcoming conference). Going to meetings like these helps us to understand even more what our colleagues do day-to-day and how their jobs relate to ours.

Overall, we had great experiences shadowing in the Marketing Department. We all agreed that it’s important to realize that this is your opportunity to learn and develop so you have to make the most out of it. One piece of advice is to follow up with your shadower because we all have busy schedules. My team members and I also suggest that there be a more standardized approach to the shadowing program, more like Content’s mentoring program. It would be a good starting point to have a general outline of what to discuss in addition to bringing your own questions.

Shadowing colleagues is a great way to network and develop a better understanding of Elsevier as a whole and we encourage you all to try it. Talk to your manager today!

She Learns: In the wake of feminism’s waves in America

A four-part series

by Elizabeth Fifer

It is difficult to navigate the complicated waters of being a woman, no matter the time period. Working in corporate America, I read articles on the pay gap between men and women; I pay attention to how few women are in math and sciences at universities; I worry about being an empowering role model to my young cousins.

Recently, I commented on an article that a Facebook friend posted, titled “How to Not Raise your Son to be a P***y”. Naturally, I was not only appalled at this unapologetic use of what I consider to be a demeaning slang term on such a public forum, but I was shocked to see that there were others commenting who agreed with the article’s advice on techniques to make sure your son turned out to be a “manly man” and didn’t display indications of sensitivity or lack of bravery. Quickly, and perhaps rashly, I privately messaged the person that reposted this article and asked if the repost was in parody, in which he quickly replied, “No, but you’re not a feminist, are you?” My mouth hung open, stunned, not sure how to respond.

Yes, I do consider myself a feminist, which apparently in recent years has transformed to be an insult rather than a self-identifier. According to Google, the definition of “feminism” is “the advocacy of women's rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men”. This sounds about right to me, and it doesn’t seem like a negative thing to be. Though I was disgusted with this person’s post, I was thankful that he had given me the opportunity to reflect on the word feminist and its origins. I wanted to explore the roots of feminism in America.

In school, I gained a basic knowledge of the beginnings of women’s suffrage and political equality, but such knowledge has since evaporated from my brain. I knew there were three waves of feminism, but I didn’t know the distinction between them. So, starting with the first wave, I began to learn of remarkable women who risked their freedom and livelihood for suffrage. The more I researched, the harder it became to piece together so many key voices and cultural contexts. I wanted to write a piece on feminism that was honest and complete, but the time period of 1840 – 1920 was so heavy with racial prejudices and inequalities, implications from the Civil War and World War I, and numerous other influences, that I recognized any article that I wrote would leave out many aspects and important people. Please consider this first part a brief glimpse into a complicated cultural landscape that was teeming with evolving ideologies and hundreds of important women and men contributing to the conversation.

The triumvirate of women’s suffrage

The first wave of feminism in America started with Margaret Fuller’s book Woman in the Nineteenth Century, published in 1843. It was the first major feminist work in the United States. Its main idea was that by granting spiritual and intellectual freedom to women, mankind would become more enlightened. It also referenced the abolitionist movement and compared women’s lack of freedom to that of slaves. Fuller called for compassion to women, and for women to be more active in the abolitionist movement. The book was received with mixed reviews – Edgar Allen Poe and Henry David Thoreau thought it to be extraordinary and truly a courageous feat to even have it published. Several readers, including Nathaniel and Sophia Hawthorne, were angered that she would even write of such subjects and considered it to only be eloquent whining. However, Fuller’s words reached the right person – Susan B. Anthony.

Even before Anthony spoke for women’s suffrage, however, there was Lucretia Mott. An abolitionist and suffragist, she and Elizabeth Cady Stanton organized the first public women’s rights meeting in the United States in 1848 called The Seneca Falls Convention. There, they drafted the “Declaration of Sentiments, Grievances, and Resolutions”, which restated the Declaration of Independence that all men and women are created equal. Mott was a mentor to Stanton, who wrote The Woman’s Bible, a hugely controversial non-fiction book that challenged the religious notion that women should be subservient to men. This book was radical and many women suffragists distanced themselves from such a controversial text, claiming that it would harm the movement rather than aid it.

In 1850, the first of a series of meetings called the National Woman’s Rights Convention were held in Worcester, Massachusetts. Mostly attended by men, the speakers included William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth, Lucretia Mott, Lucy Stone, and many other notable figures. A year later in Ohio, Sojourner Truth would give her famous “Ain’t I a Woman?” speech extemporaneously. Truth was an abolitionist and a suffragist, often expressing concern that the women’s rights movements would lose steam after achieving suffrage for black men, leaving all women without rights.

On the last night of the convention, Lucy Stone spoke, “We want to be something more than the appendages of society; we want that woman should be the coequal and help-meet of man in all the interest and perils and enjoyments of human life. We want that she should attain to the development of her nature and womanhood; we want that when she dies, it may not be written on her gravestone that she was the ’relict‘ of somebody". When Susan B. Anthony read this speech, she became an activist for women’s rights.

Anthony met Stanton in 1851, and they became lifelong friends, and together they started many organizations for the abolition of slavery and women’s suffrage. In 1863, they collected nearly 400,000 signatures for the abolition of slavery, the largest petition drive up to that point. Among other organizations they spearheaded (including publishing a women’s rights newspaper called The Revolution), they notably founded the National Woman Suffrage Association (NWSA). The NWSA did not support the Fifteenth Amendment, which granted black men the right to vote, unless it included the right to vote for women as well. This issue was very divisive to the women’s rights activists during that time.

The other major women’s rights organization was the American Woman Suffrage Association (AWSA). The AWSA supported the Fifteenth Amendment. Lucy Stone was one of the leaders of the AWSA, after she successfully established the Woman’s National Loyal League, which helped pass the Thirteenth Amendment. Stone was a charismatic speaker and passionate writer whose efforts built support for a woman suffrage Constitutional amendment, during a time when it was “unladylike” for a woman to do any sort of public speaking at all. She is known as the “heart and soul” of the woman’s movement. Because Lucy Stone never took her husband’s name after marriage, many women today are referred to as “Lucy Stoners” if they keep their surnames.

 Petition signed by E. Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, Lucy Stone, and others. U.S. National Archives and Records Administration.

In 1872, Victoria Woodhull ran for president. The first female candidate in the United States, she proposed writing a new Constitution and a new government to include women. She also spoke on the freedom for women to marry and divorce without government interference, which was coined “free love”.  A controversial figure at the time, not only for her ideals of “free love,” but also as an advocate for the working class and speaking against the capitalist elite. She went to jail for one month for writing an article exposing the sexual double-standard between men and women, which was considered “obscene”, and her trial was sensationalized across the country.

 In 1890, The AWSA and the NWSA eventually united to form the National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA). There were about 7,000 members when it was formed, eventually rising to two million when the Nineteenth Amendment was passed in 1920. The NAWSA was a key player in passing the amendment after it was rejected in 1887. There were other groups more radical than the NAWSA, notably Woman’s National Liberal Union, formed by Matilda Electa Gage. She was an abolitionist, suffragist, and advocate for Native American rights. She vehemently opposed the Christian church and supported the separation of church and state, claiming that the Church was integral in subjugating women and reinforcing patriarchal systems, which harmed women’s rights. She opposed abortion and claimed it was supported and furthered by men wishing to maintain their wealth. She also wrote on the right of women to divorce and refuse sex, a concept quite radical in the late 1800s.

In 1894, Ida B. Wells exposed the racial prejudice that loomed over the suffrage movement in the United States. A journalist, suffragist, and early leader in the Civil Rights Movement, Wells spoke before advocates of the British temperance movement about the racial prejudice of Frances Willard. Willard was an American suffragist and president of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) which had about 200,000 members. Wells aptly criticized Willard for perpetuating the myth that black males fell especially susceptible to the dangers of alcohol, blaming the failure of the temperance movement on the Southern black population. The WCTU, though focused on Christian values and the prohibition of alcohol, enabled many women to be more active in politics, lending itself to key involvement in women’s suffrage. Wells asked how influential white women leaders could ignore white mobs who threatened black lives. The New York Times called Wells “slanderous”, though Wells had the British press’ support. Wells was influential in exposing the horrors of lynching, and she was a precursor to Rosa Parks.

In 1906, Susan B. Anthony died before seeing women’s suffrage on a national level, but in her speeches up to her death, she remained positive and optimistic that it would be achieved. She feared that people would forget the tribulations that women endured to earn the right to vote. When she started speaking for women’s rights, Anthony was accused of attempting to destroy the institution of marriage. But during her fifty years of campaigning, she witnessed several states passing laws for women’s suffrage and giving legal rights to married women, as well as women attending college and entering professions previously dominated by only men.

Anthony, Stanton, and Stone are considered the three pivotal women in the women’s suffrage movement, but there are numerous other women who spoke for women’s rights and helped shift the public perspective of women’s political and professional involvement.

The Silent Sentinels

Women suffragists picketing in front of the White house. 1917. Library of Congress.

Alice Paul and Carrie Chapman Catt were both leaders during the 1910s campaign for the Nineteenth Amendment. Catt served as President of the NAWSA, and Paul helped revive interest in the organization’s cause. Paul fell away from the NAWSA, wanting to focus on suffrage at a federal level rather than local, and formed the National Women’s Party along with Lucy Burns.  

In 1917, they campaigned against President Woodrow Wilson. The women in the NWP (called ‘The Silent Sentinels’) picketed daily at the White House, and continued protesting throughout World War I.  Horrifically, when the women were non-violently picketing, men would often beat the women, and police arrested other men trying to help the women. Protesters were unlawfully arrested for “obstructing traffic”, including Paul and Burns. The women were imprisoned in the Occoquan Workhouse in Virginia.

 Lucy Burns in Occoquan Workhouse. Library of Congress.

On November 14th, the women were violently and viciously beaten by the guards. This was known as the “Night of Terror”, but was not the only night they were brutally abused. They were denied health care and visitors, put in solitary confinement, and force-fed. Burns was chained to the cell bars with her hands above her head, clothes removed, and left there for the night. They threw Dora Lewis, another Silent Sentinel, against an iron bed which knocked her unconscious.

 Despite living in these miserable conditions, Paul began a hunger strike and was transferred to the prison’s psychiatric ward and endured tortuous conditions. In response to the Night of Terror, newspapers published accounts of how the women were being treated. This, thankfully, created more support for the Nineteenth Amendment, which passed in 1920.

After women’s suffrage was finally attained, thus began the birth control movement, first lead by Margaret Higgins Sanger. Sanger founded the American Birth Control League (later to be renamed to Planned Parenthood) in 1921.  She illegally distributed information on contraception and thought that women needed the ability to decide when to bear children as part of their equal rights. She is criticized for her views on eugenics, but she is still regarded to be influential in woman’s reproductive rights.

The first wave of feminism mostly focused on women’s suffrage. I look forward to exploring the people and events during the second wave next issue of Sage. It was grounding and eye-opening to research all of these headstrong, courageous women that put their livelihood on the line for women’s suffrage. They demanded rights and equal footing during a time when very few women had spoken out before.












She Cares: Elsevier’s Karen Zinkl dedicates her volunteer hours to Stray Rescue

Elsevier employees gather for a volunteer day at Stray Rescue in October 2015.  All photos compliments of Karen Zinkl.

Elsevier employees gather for a volunteer day at Stray Rescue in October 2015.  All photos compliments of Karen Zinkl.

By Kathleen Nahm

Giving of one’s time to help others is a key value of life at Elsevier. Employees are encouraged to use their volunteer hours for a variety of tasks to serve the community and protect the environment. However, one way to give back doesn’t necessarily involve giving one’s time to people, it means giving one’s time to help a furry friend. No one better understands this mission than Karen Zinkl.

Karen hangs out with a Stray Rescue friend.

Karen hangs out with a Stray Rescue friend.

Zinkl has volunteered at Stray Rescue of St. Louis for the past 10 years, devoting more than 1,000 hours of her time to help improve the lives of rescued animals. She has served as the RE Cares representative for the organization for the past five years, and coordinates Elsevier employees’ service at the shelter the first Friday of every month. She spends her two volunteer days’ hours and then uses her personal vacation days to continue her service.

Although the work can be challenging, Zinkl believes rescued animals often can make the best pets.

“Seeing a new rescue come in with their eyes broken is so difficult. You don’t see life in their eyes and knowing a human did that to them, it just kills you,” Zinkl said. “But seeing one hurt so bad and seeing the life come back is one of the best things. These dogs know they’ve had a second chance and they give you true love. It’s amazing.”

Throughout her 24 years at Elsevier, Zinkl has volunteered for multiple RE Cares events including book and clothing drives, and 100 Neediest Cases, but her passion lies in volunteering for the RE Cares Pets/Animal Committee and spending her volunteer hours at Stray Rescue.

Stray Rescue of St. Louis

Stray Rescue of St. Louis was founded in 1998 and is a no-kill organization, which focuses on rescued stray animals, caring for their needs, and placing them in loving, adoptive homes. Many of the animals at the shelter have been abused and neglected. These creatures include dogs and cats, but it is not unusual to find a pig, alligator, bird, snake, or rabbit, Zinkl said.

Zinkl explained that sometimes people move and choose to leave their pets behind and many of these animals wind up in the shelter. She said the exotic animals are usually sent to individualized specialty care rescue centers. There are around 500 animals at any given time within the organization’s system, many of which are in foster care.


Karen Zinkl with Randy Grim, founder of Stray Rescue of St. Louis. 

Karen Zinkl with Randy Grim, founder of Stray Rescue of St. Louis. 

Zinkl became interested in the mission of Stray Rescue after a plea was made for volunteers to help rescue pets after Hurricane Katrina.

Her objective is to help Elsevier volunteers complete the orientation program at the shelter. She reviews housekeeping rules, provides directions, and gives instructions for volunteers to receive an RE Cares T-shirt. Orientation must be completed upon the first visit. This also allows volunteers to repeat volunteer time if they choose.

While at the shelter, volunteers complete a variety of tasks including washing dishes, laundry, walking dogs, unloading donations, working in the warehouse, and cleaning kennels. Dog walking is an important task, Zinkl said. Although the facility has three agility yards, dogs are usually walked about three or four times each morning and afternoon. Zinkl explained this can sometimes be a daunting task with as many as 150 dogs at the shelter.

When asked what she’d like volunteers to learn from the experience, Zinkl said, “There’s no such thing as a bad dog, just a bad owner. To see the dogs bloom is amazing.”

She noted Elsevier employees visit the shelter repeatedly to volunteer, even giving their personal time.

“At least two Elsevier employees have gone home with pets after volunteering,” Zinkl laughed. “I’ve been very thankful for Elsevier to open this up for volunteer days, any volunteer days. We’re very lucky to work for a company that does that.”

Zinkl is also in charge of merchandise sales for Stray Rescue and participates in promotional events throughout the year. She volunteers with her husband, Larry, and they also foster puppies at their home.


Zinkl has a long history of fostering puppies through Stray Rescue while caring for her own four dogs and two cats, all of whom were adopted through the shelter. She calls them “foster failures.” Her dogs include: Ashley, a pit bull mix; Jasmine, an Akita mix; and Sassy and Stoey, sisters who are shepherd mixes. Cats are Ayeka and Mesha respectively, who are also Stray Rescue adoptees.

She fosters puppies about every three to four months. Puppies are up for adoption at six weeks old.

A pit bull, Rasha, gives Karen a kiss. 

A pit bull, Rasha, gives Karen a kiss. 

“One of the best things is meeting all the wonderful families,” Zinkl said. “Then it’s easy to let the puppies go. You get great friendships out of volunteering.

“Fostering doesn’t cost a thing, what it takes is your time. You just have to make that time. All you have to invest is yourself. You give yourself to that dog. There is nothing better than a pit bull kiss as a thank you. You can’t put a price on that.”

RE Cares

The next RE Cares volunteer day at Stray Rescue of St. Louis is tentatively Feb. 5, 2016. Contact Zinkl if interested. She may be reached at Stray Rescue of St. Louis is located at 2300 Pine Street downtown. For more information, visit

She Leads: HBA Webinar on Emotional Intelligence at Work

by Katie Starke

On October 13, the EWN hosted an on-site webinar screening of Emotional Intelligence at Work, an HBA-sponsored talk by Shawn Kent Hayashi and Susan Torroella. Hayashi is the founder and CEO of The Professional Development Group, LLC, and executive in residence for Lehigh University’s MBA program. Torroella is executive vice president of screening operations at Wellness Corporate Solutions, LLC. These two women provided insight into what it means to be emotionally intelligent, and how our emotional IQ can positively affect our work lives and help us be our best selves in and out of the office.

                Hayashi explains that emotionally literate people are more productive, less stressed, more influential, and make more money. In order to avoid emotional illiteracy, Hayashi encourages her clients to focus more on themselves, and less on fixing others.

                Emotional literacy is comprised of 7 emotions and 5 competencies working together consciously.










Self-awareness: knowing which emotion you are feeling

Self-regulation: knowing how to process through an emotion Motivation: knowing what drives you and keeps you engaged

Empathy: knowing how others are motivated and what they are feeling in the moment

Social Skills: all of above à creating relationships by using your skills to motivate

Emotions flood our body and produce a physiological response - recognizing that our decision-making skills and thought processes become clouded in an emotional state helps us to reset, or “clear,” our mindset. Triggers activate these emotions in various situations. In order to combat these triggers, we should first identify the trigger and then flip to a higher state of emotion. An apt example Hayashi gave was the emotional trigger of a departmental reorganization. A company reorg may trigger the emotion of fear based on work instability. Hayashi suggested flipping the emotion of fear to curiosity, and always to focus on gratitude to keep things in perspective. In fact, Hayashi noted that it takes 5 positive emotional experiences to dilute one negative emotional experience, further stressing the importance of redirecting negative emotions into positive working experiences. 

The competencies of self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skills are learned and can be learned at any age. Women in the workplace have an advantage in this regard, because these skills are often already ingrained in our dialogue -- we are often taught how to check our emotions and keep an empathic mindset when we are girls. By using soft language, open-ended questions, and offering opportunities for reflection, Hayashi suggests that we can flip triggering emotions to positive emotions, creating better outcomes in our work life and creating a healthier emotional intelligence.