At Pass the Torch, we have been lucky enough to have had such incredible champions of our mission. We want to highlight and say a special thank you to Amanda Fishburn, our Immediate Past Board Chair, for her abundance of leadership, service, and support over the past several years! Read below to learn more about how she became involved with Pass the Torch and the legacy she has created.
Q: What inspired you to get involved with the Pass the Torch For Women Foundation?
Amanda: I knew I wanted to get involved after attending an International Women’s Day Breakfast and listening to the wonderful stories of women mentoring women. After learning that I could get involved by just engaging in mentorship at one hour each month, I knew I wanted to join the mission. I have always benefitted from mentorship personally from the earliest stages of my career, and I knew this was my moment to begin giving back.
Q: What has been your most memorable event or moment with the foundation so far?
Amanda: Last year in November (2022), when we made our large return to live events bringing our community back together for Pass the Mic was truly a vibrant full circle moment! That was a needed event at a time for the Foundation. Especially post-pandemic, we wanted to see all of our people coming together doing what we do best; celebrating voices of excellence in our community! It was a game changer for so many and for months to come.
Q: What does passing the torch mean to you, and why is it important to empower women?
Amanda: Empowering women is critical because women lift up communities, families, and economies. I believe women change the world, and sometimes that starts one person at a time, lifting up little voices at home we are raising who we pass our torches to. The Foundation allows us to elevate that potential and pass our torches to a community who need mentorship or guidance as they prepare to launch and then something beautifully sustainable happens as they pass their torch and introduce women to their network and so on. It creates growth, networking and community!
Q: How has the foundation helped you or someone you know achieve their goals?
Amanda: Mentors who I have engaged with have been promoted and have left their organizations for bigger and better jobs. They have obtained raises after being in their organizations for years. But most importantly, they have learned the importance of self-advocacy and how to have difficult conversations.
Q: How does the foundation address intersectionality and support women from diverse backgrounds and experiences?
Amanda: This is an intentional part of everything we do. Our board represents voices from all of our communities, is representative of allies, and cultural diversity which ensures representation and consideration in the decision making for what we do. Instead of having separation for the Legacy Leader events as was the case many years ago, now the programming is inclusive to ensure reverse mentorship and togetherness.
Q: What advice would you give to women who are just starting out in their careers, and how does the foundation support and uplift women in this stage of their lives?
Amanda: Pass the Torch is a great place to get involved and connect to others at the early stage of your career all the way through to the executive level. Be open and know what you want to accomplish next. Stay motivated and know the end does not look like the beginning. The best advice I could provide is just to get involved!
Q: How can individuals and organizations get involved with the foundation and support its efforts to empower and uplift women?
Amanda: Come to the next event, join a committee, become a mentor! This is an organization which will give you back as much or more than you put in. I highly encourage that engagement and bring a friend!
We are incredibly thankful to Amanda as she leaves a legacy of hard work, dedication, and passion that has served the foundation greatly. We wish her the best as she passes her torch to our new Board Chair, Akilah Darden!