Anne Ladky is Executive Director and founding member of Women Employed, a 44-year-old organization whose mission is to improve women’s economic status and remove barriers to economic equity. Women Employed is widely recognized for its groundbreaking work to require the federal government to enforce affirmative action requirements, outlaw sexual harassment, and promote family-friendly policies, leading to historic changes in women’s employment opportunities. Today, Women Employed’s priorities are to expand employment opportunities and improve the quality of women’s jobs, and increase access to quality post-secondary education and training leading to good jobs with family-supporting wages. Under Ladky’s leadership, Women Employed led the fight for paid sick time in Chicago and Cook County to ensure nearly 1 million individuals can take earned sick time to care for themselves or a loved one, as well as helped pass a pregnancy fairness protection bill and the Illinois Domestic Workers Bill of Rights.
Anne left a career in publishing to join Women Employed in 1977, after several years as a volunteer, and was named director in 1985. Before joining the staff of Women Employed, Ladky was an active volunteer in various women’s organizations, leading national and local campaigns on equal opportunity issues and serving as President of the Chicago Chapter of the National Organization for Women from 1973-1975.
Ladky is a nationally recognized expert on equal opportunity issues, workplace fairness, workforce development and higher education policy, and issues affecting low-paid working women. She has developed and directed innovative advocacy campaigns designed to improve women’s economic status and has authored numerous reports and articles on women’s economic issues. Under Anne’s leadership, Women Employed has won numerous awards for organizational excellence and impact. She was most recently honored as a 2012 “Woman with Vision” by the Women’s Bar Association of Illinois and named one of Chicago’s 100 most influential women by Today’s Chicago Woman.
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