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Oscar-winning actress and women’s advocate Geena Davis will be the closing keynote speaker at the NEW Executive Leaders Forum 2013 on July 25 at the Terranea Resort outside Los Angeles. She will speak on women’s empowerment and the need for more women in front of and behind the camera in media.
More than 300 senior-level leaders from the consumer products and retail industry are expected to attend the by-invitation, three-day event, which also features HSN Inc. CEO Mindy Grossman and Muhtar Kent, CEO of The Coca-Cola Company.
Davis founded the nonprofit Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media in 2004. The institute is a research-based organization working to reduce stereotyping and broaden female characters in children's entertainment. Its programming arm, See Jane, spotlights gender inequalities through research, education, training, strategic guidance and advocacy programs.
"I felt, as a mother, kids should be seeing boys and girls sharing the sandbox equally,” Davis said in a recent interview. "There are so few female characters that have positions of authority that are playing the important politicians, business leaders, law partners. That's what we want to work on, because if kids don't see it, they're not going to think of wanting to become that when they grow up.”
In 1989, Davis received the Academy Award for best supporting actress for her role as the offbeat dog trainer Muriel Pritchett in Lawrence Kasdan's "The Accidental Tourist.” She was again nominated for an Academy Award and a Golden Globe Award for her performance as Thelma in Ridley Scott's "Thelma and Louise,” in which she co-starred with Susan Sarandon. She also received a Golden Globe nomination for best actress for her portrayal of baseball phenomenon Dottie Hinson in "A League of Their Own.”