Women Leaders
Women Breaking Barriers: The 1st Forum of Women Entrepreneurs in Rosario

Women from the business world, politics, the third sector and the press met to exchange experiences and analyze the importance of the role of women in all areas.
Nadia Barrozo

For the first time in its history, Fundación Libertad held an event for women, the 1st Forum of Women Entrepreneurs, in cooperation with the Friedrich Naumann Foundation and other institutions. Among the topics addressed were women's leadership, women in the business world, breaking barriers and stereotypes, and the role of NGOs and institutions.

The opening of the Forum was in charge of the Vice Governor of the Province of Santa Fe, Gisela Scaglia, who gave an online lecture on "Women's participation in the Executive Branch". Gisela briefly talked about her experience in politics and pointed out the importance of greater advances in gender issues. She invited women to get involved in politics. 

Tali Salomón, a native of Rosario who currently lives in Israel and is the Executive Director of eToro, an Israeli multinational social trading and multi-asset investment company that provides financial and copy trading services, then gave a presentation. The main topics addressed were monetary policy, inflation in the world, de-globalization, technology and investments. Tali encouraged the female audience present to be encouraged to invest, and pointed out the importance of the virtue of patience that women seem to have more than men as an essential quality for the investment world.

Women in the Agricultural and Football sectors

Foro de Mujeres Empresarias

Three women shared their experiences and told how they broke barriers to be able to preside and lead institutions historically with male presidencies and in sectors where there have always been only men: the agricultural sector and soccer.

Soledad Aramendi (president of the Rural Society of Rosario), said that it was actually not that difficult for her to become the first president of the institution, which has always been presided by men. She also pointed out the importance of working together as men and women from different sectors and getting vocal in front of government authorities to reactivate the economy.

Carolina Cristinziano (vice-president of Club Atlético Rosario Central) and María Augusta González (representative of AAPRESID - Asociación Argentina de Productores en Siembra Directa - and Red de Mujeres Rurales), focused on asking women to have more self-confidence and courage to dare to occupy places where there have always been men. Courage and participation were two key words in their speeches, and they agreed that even today there are still very few women in the agricultural and soccer sectors, especially in the areas where decisions are made.

Inspiring Stories of Women Entrepreneurs and CEOs

The female audience was able to enjoy the stories of four female entrepreneurs and CEOs. Some of them were part of the book "Pioneras", edited by Fundación Libertad in cooperation with the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom in 2018. Each conveyed a differentiating and motivating message to the audience:

Silvia Aiello, owner of a travel agency, told (among other things) how she was able to save her company after the pandemic, withthe tourism industry one of the most "hit" by local and international measures. Silvana del Lago, as the creator of a successful sportswear brand, stressed that in addition to selling clothes, she communicates with her company the importance of sports as a tool to educate. "I didn't come from the fashion industry, but I dared to dream. Nobody needs money to dream," she told the audience.

Carolina Christener, in her turn, conveyed the importance of image and what we communicate according to how we dress; and shared a concept of modern and friendly fashion. Finally, Catalina Chavanne, focused on her way of leading. Her company consists of 40 employees (36 women and 4 men). She said that one day she asked her team what they saw in her as a leader and the answer (almost unanimous) was her capacity for dialogue, that she always listens to them and her contagious way of acting. "It is very important to listen to other, and for that each one must first work on her identity", was her message to the women present.

Women in Politics and the Media

Diputada por la Provincia de Santa Fe

The panel of women politicians included Verónica Razzini and Germana Figueroa Casas, both deputies for Santa Fe. Verónica shared her experience on how active participation in politics can promote public policies that transform society, highlighting the challenges in a predominantly male environment. Germana focused on the differences between the business and political world in terms of female participation, and spoke about time management, competence and efficiency, highlighting the importance of continuous training.

Silvia Mercado, with her vast experience in the media, addressed the current challenges for women to make themselves heard in the media. She emphasized the importance of women's visibility and active voice in the public sphere, and offered practical tools and motivation for more women to take on leadership roles in the media.

Women with a Vocation for Service in NGOs, Foundations and the Public Sector

At the end of the event, I had the opportunity to speak on "The role of women in NGOs and foundations", as Project Coordinator of the FNF and my political experience as a woman within Argentine liberalism for more than 25 years. First of all, I expressed my joy because Fundación Libertad started to promote these spaces for exchange. Then I provided details of the activities and programs that we have been developing from the Foundation to promote gender equality.

I focused on transmitting the importance of permanent training to be able to be an option in the different sectors because of our capacity, and not only because we are women. I also mentioned that it is essential to have a vocation of service when joining politics, an NGO or Foundation, to develop our role with passion. The most important thing is to work together, as a team, men and women, both from the private and public sectors, adding the third sector, which is essential to design public policies that improve the quality of life of all citizens.

To close the event, Georgina Losada, Secretary of International Trade and Investment of Santa Fe, presented her work during her almost half year in office. Georgina shared her trajectory, starting from her activismin university politics to reach today a key role in her province, contributing to economic growth. Her presentation highlighted the achievements and challenges faced, underlining the importance of her work in boosting the local economy.

In conclusion, the general message among all the panelists and the cross-cutting theme of the event was that women are capable, and if we trust in ourselves we can achieve great things, empowering ourselves and working together. It is essential that each one of us empowers other women to show them that it is possible to achieve dreams and goals, despite the obstacles that may arise along the way. Part of our strength lies in unity, in supporting each other and never stopping believing in our potential.