About The Lodis Forum
The Lodis Forum is a peer group exclusively for women who are Board Chairs, Vice-Chairs, or Lead Directors. We focus on governance excellence, peer exchange, research, and advocacy.
- Governance Excellence: Provide resources and insight to support governance excellence and leadership in the Boardroom
- Peer Exchange: Build a supportive network of women who are experiencing similar challenges
- Research: Conduct research on board leadership diversity
- Advocacy: Create awareness about the lack of diversity in these critical leadership roles
We are the only forum exclusively connecting female Chairs, Vice-Chairs, and Lead Directors of for-profit firms. The power of our “collective” is both inspirational and unique.
We host quarterly Expert Speaker Series and Peer Roundtables where the agenda is geared towards curated topics that we, as a forum, assign and deem important. We welcome both opportunities and obstacles and promise a transparent and trusted environment for all to speak openly. We believe our collective voices will be uniquely suited to elevate a public conversation on Women in Board Leadership – and defiantly as Chairs, Vice-Chairs, and Lead Directors.
My first year as Chairman was not what I expected. I had three weeks to get my feet wet in my new role, and then the pandemic hit. I went from knowing what to do to being confounded in a matter of days. I spent countless hours in meetings trying to navigate the competing priorities of employee safety and serving our customers as an essential business. Also, I spent a significant amount of time reassuring our corporate board and family shareholders that we had a plan and would survive this crisis. It was a tough first year.
Six months into the pandemic, I was suffering from too much stress and isolation. I wasn’t spending time with my beloved husband and children, getting exercise, or taking a break from the computer. Since I have a severe autoimmune illness, we were taking the lockdown seriously. A mere fever could prove fatal, and we were worried about how my body would react if I got COVID.
In “normal” times, my job is challenging and draining but also energizing. I was just left with all the complex, mentally and emotionally draining work once we were on lockdown. It was by chance that I found a new source of energy that was safe and socially distanced.
About six months into the pandemic, I spoke at a virtual conference with an excellent networking app. I started reading through attendees’ bios and started reaching out to people who sounded interesting. It was a joy to meet new people. I hadn’t met anyone new in months, and I found it imminently energizing. Each new person I met resulted in additional connections. I stumbled upon another female board chair, and instantly I realized how isolated I had been. Being Chairman is lonely. Being a female Chairman is such a rarity that I had only met one other female Chairman in my entire career. At the end of our first conversation, I felt energized, enthused, and a little bit restored. We vowed to find other women who were Chairman. It was the beginning of The Lodis Forum. Since that first conversation, I have met so many smart, talented, and resilient women. It has been a joy and a lifesaver.