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1/17/24 – The power of your identity

“Your Identity is Your Superpower” by America Ferrera

America Ferrera (actress from Ugly Betty and Barbie) details how in her journey of auditioning, she was constantly put in a box. She’s shares an anecdote about how she was asked, “Could you do that again but this just time sound more Latina?” The casting director’s vision of someone who spoke in broken English trumped America Ferrera’s real-life authentic experience as a Latina.

America Ferrera realized that she could not change a system if she were to comply to those stereotypical beliefs. “Change will come when each of us has the courage to question our own fundamental values and beliefs and then see to it that our actions lead to our best intentions.” It takes inward reflection on our identity and values to know what we want to stand for.

America proudly says, “My identity is not my obstacle. My identity is my superpower.” We can exist authentically as who we are and live our dreams without conforming to the ideas that others have formed about us.

“The Power of Diversity Within Yourself” by Rebeca Hwang

In this podcast Rebeca Hwang (social entrepreneur and venture capital investor) shares stories that highlight the multiplicity of her background, being born in Korea, raised in Argentina, and then studying in the US.

Hwang turned her unique identity into a strength when she began embracing all of the different versions of herself, “even allowing [herself] to reinvent [herself] at times.”

“Now, today my identity quest is no longer to find my tribe. It's more about allowing myself to embrace all of the possible permutations of myself and cultivating diversity within me and not just around me.” In order to lead and create diverse and inclusive organizations, we must recognize the diversity of our own identities and experiences and how that can guide us in creating space for others. I leave with the question, “How can we use what makes us unique to better understand and connect with others?”