Where Are The Boss Ladies is a crowd-sourced list of ad agencies with women in charge. We want to provide a resource for people to find their next female boss or business partner.
Want to get involved? Have firstname.lastname@example.org
I'm a freelance advertising creative director who was looking for her next job. I have had amazing male bosses, but I was curious to know how it felt like to have a female boss. Someone I could see myself becoming in 10 years.
So I started a spreadsheet that listed 6 female-founded agencies I knew of. I shared it on Fishbowl and the list was passed around and amazing people have been contributing since.
I just want to help my fellow ladies not drop out of advertising because they don't see themselves in the type of senior leadership we have today. Like, do I want to become Sir Martin Sorrell? Not really. Do I want to be a Cannes Lions champagne-popping mouth-gaping clone? No. Sorry, maybe they're very nice people. But I can't relate to that much self-satisfaction.
I'm passionate about diversity in leadership. I also inspire little girls of all ethnicities to get in male-dominated fields like technology, with Secret Code, a customizable children's book that stars *your* girl as a tech hero. I try to help our guy friends understand women, with articles like Guys, here's how you retain female talent.
I was lucky. My first job in the agency world had women at the helm of leadership. Women. Not one woman, a lot of women. From department heads to the CEO, there were women being bold as brass, pushing agendas, and making declarative sentences. I didn’t realize it at the time, but it took a word I’ve been called since childhood—bossy—from a scarlet letter to a merit badge. I was bossy, and boss ladies get things done. I also didn’t realize how rare this leadership structure was, and that after over a decade in the industry, I wouldn’t manage to find it again.
Mara’s search to find the boss ladies, and to create a space to vouch for them, learn from them, and work for them—and to find the companies that hire, promote, and actively work to retain women—well, it was huge. And it’s needed. Because I was lucky enough to stumble into seeing people who looked like me exerting strength and holding a room, and that shouldn’t be based on luck.
I’ve spent the better part of my career in Operations and Resourcing thinking about process, workflow, and methods of collaborating. It’s not the part most people consider fun about agency life, but I’ll never get tired of tinkering with the process of making things better. It’s why I raised my hand to help make Where Are the Boss Ladies? the best resource it can be.
Still early in her advertising career, Marianne Lawlor knows the importance of emphasizing women in leadership roles. As someone who has had mostly male bosses (in advertising and otherwise), she believes that you can't be what you can't see, and the boss list is a big step in the right direction.
She is currently a producer at Heat in San Francisco and has every intention of being part of the list in the future.
These amazing creatives have helped us kick off Where Are The Boss Ladies.
Malika Favre is a French-Algerian artist based in London.
Her bold, minimal style—often described as Pop Art meets OpArt – is a striking lesson in the use of positive/negative space and colour.
Her unmistakable style has established her as one of the UK’s most sought after graphic artists. Malika’s clients include The New Yorker, Vogue, BAFTA, Sephora and Penguin Books, amongst many others.
Lucia Orlandi a 3 Percent Conference and One Club Next Creative Leader. She is an Irish Creative Director + Designer, based out of San Francisco. Over the past ten years she has spent time working in Dublin, Toronto + NYC and has recently landed in the west coast after spending five years in New York.
She is currently building brand and digital experiences at R/GA, as the Creative Director for Google working in partnership with their brand studio.