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Bertini talk leads Women’s History Month events

Bertini talk leads Women’s History Month events


Catherine Bertini, an accomplished leader in international organization reform and a powerful advocate for women and girls, will speak on “Leading Changes in United Nations Organizations” as part of Women’s History Month at SUNY Cortland.

Bertini’s talk will be held at 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 4 in Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge.

These and other experts will be sharing their experiences and work at SUNY Cortland in March as the University celebrates Women’s History Month with a packed schedule of events.

Bertini has a distinguished career improving the efficiency and operations of organizations serving poor and hungry people in the U.S. and around the world. She was named the 2003 World Food Prize Laureate for her leadership of the World Food Programme as executive director from 1992 to 2002.

As a United Nations Under Secretary General for Management from 2003 to 2005, Bertini led efforts in humanitarian, development, nutrition, security and management roles and led missions to the Horn of Africa, Gaza, the West Bank and Israel.

She created the Catherine Bertini Trust Fund for Girls’ Education to support programs to increase opportunities for girls and women to attend school.  

Bertini has taught courses in Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs and has worked in various roles for the federal government, including the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

A Cortland, N.Y. native, Bertini was presented with an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters at SUNY Cortland’s 1999 Undergraduate Commencement ceremony.  

The national theme of Women’s History Month is “Valiant Women of the Vote” and celebrates both the brave women who fought for suffrage, as well as those to currently continue the struggle for representation and equity.  

“This year’s focus is especially timely as we simultaneously celebrate a century of women’s suffrage and look forward to a presidential election,” said Jena Nicols Curtis, director of the Center for Gender and Intercultural Studies and coordinator of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies.

As part of Women’s History Month, the University’s Sexual, Orientation, and Gender Identity committee will once again be hosting “TransAction.” This second annual day-long conference, held on March 6, will address the experiences of and best practices for welcoming transgender and gender non-conforming individuals on college campuses.

All events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted. The Women’s History Month schedule of events includes:

  • Monday, March 2: Student panel on "Experiences of Disability Identities (and how Gender, Race and Disability Matter) at 5 p.m. in Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge.
  • Tuesday, March 3: “Andrea Stern, Concert and Celtic Harpist” at 7 p.m. in Old Main Brown Auditorium. Tickets are $10 general admission; $8 senior citizens (age 60 and older); and $3 students. Children 10 and under admitted free.
  • Thursday, March 5: “Nigerian Wives Wishing to Join their Husbands: Gender, Fictive Kinship, and Illicit Trans-Colonial Mobilities” a Sandwich Seminar by Dr. Ndubueze L. Mbah at noon in Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge.
  • Thursday, March 5: “Empowered Women Empower Women: A Gender Equity Program for Students” from 4:15 to 6 p.m. in the Corey Union Exhibition Lounge.
  • Friday, March 6: “TransAction 2020: The Second Annual Conference on Issues Related to Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming Individuals on College Campuses” from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Corey Union Exhibition Lounge. The event is free for SUNY Cortland students, faculty and staff and $15 for all others. Register at
  • Monday, March 9: “I Am A Whisper, My Dear” a discussion of collaborative ethnofiction filmmaking with indigenous LGBT activists by Mariangela Mihai at 4:30 p.m. in Sperry Center, Room 205.
  • LECTURE CANCELLED/TO BE RESCHEDULED. Tuesday, March 10: “The History of Discriminatory Lending Practices in the U.S. and its Role in Perpetuating Intergenerational Inequality” by David Fruend from the University of Maryland at 5 p.m. in Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge.
  • Tuesday, March 10: “Gender Inclusive Climbing” at 10 p.m. at the Student Life Center Climbing Wall.
  • THIS EVENT IS CANCELLED. ORGANIZERS WILL TRY TO RESCHEDULE FOR A LATER DATE.Thursday, March 12: “An Afternoon with Cheryl Strayed” will begin at noon in Old Main Colloquium Room. This sandwich seminar is open only to SUNY Cortland students, faculty and staff. For more information, contact Heather Bartlett or John Leffel. The event is sponsored by Distinguished Voices in Literature.

More information on upcoming Women’s History Month events will be posted in future bulletins.

Women’s History Month Events are sponsored by: Advisement and Transition; the Campus Artist and Lectures Series; the Center for Gender and Intercultural Studies; he Disability Resources Office; the Economics Department; the History Department; the Geography Department; Hillel; the International Studies Program; the Institutional Equity and Inclusion Office; the Clark Center for Global Engagement; the Gender Policies and Initiatives Council; the It’s On Us Action Team; Jewish Studies; the New York Public Interest Research Group; the Memorial Library ; Outdoor Pursuits; the President’s Office; the Sexual Orientation, Gender, Identity, and Expression Committee (SOGIE); Disability Resources; the Student Government Association; the SUNY Cortland Chapter of the American Association of University Women; and the TransAfrica Project.

For more information, contact Curtis at 607-753-2979.