District 13 calls for women leadership for sustainable future at District Conference

From 31 August to 2 September, District 13, Denmark, Iceland, Lithuania and Norway, held its District Conference under the theme "Women Leadership for a Sustainable Future." Almost 100 Zontians from all four countries gathered for the event south of the Polar Circle in Akureyri, Iceland.

This year, the conference featured how Zontians can most effectively promote women as leaders for a sustainable future. Key speakers in the field of sustainability were Reidun Elise Vold, manager of climate and environment at AkerBP in Norway and a member of the Zonta Club of Vigrestad and Omegn, Dr. Audur H. Ingolfsdottir, owner and managing director at Transformia and a Zonta Club of Akureyri member and Ester Alda Hrafnhildar Bragadottir, a consultant at the Icelandic Environment Agency and as she put it - not yet a Zontian.

" We believe Zonta and women's leadership can make a huge difference in what action to take to a sustainable future and improve all lives on our planet," said Area 3 Director Sesselja Sigurdardottir.

Ingibjörg Sólrún Gísladóttir, a Zonta International Honorary Member, also attended the conference and addressed the importance of gender equality.

"Today, it is widely recognized that gender equality makes society and all its institutions better and more prosperous and successful for women and men alike," said Ingibjörg. "Abolishing gender injustice and inequality is not a by-product of other developments. It is a precondition for equality, justice and peace in all societies."

The conference also pointed out that having more women go into STEM is one of the most important parameters for promoting women as leaders of a sustainable future. The Zontians plan to propose, at the 2024 Zonta International Convention in Brisbane, Australia, that the Women in STEM Scholarship be continued, preferably permanently.