Cannes Lions has announced the 15 women selected for this year’s See It Be It programme. Allie Steel, senior copywriter at M&C Saatchi, is the only Australian representative.
A record-breaking number of 797 applications from 70 countries were received for the talent accelerator programme in 2020. It will run as a virtual learning and mentoring programme in 2020 and return to the Festival in 2021. See It Be It, in partnership with Spotify, is the Cannes Lions initiative aiming to achieve equal gender representation of creative directors and leaders across the global industry.
“See It Be It is an instrumental initiative in Cannes Lions’ response to the gender imbalance that exists within the global creative community,” stated Louise Benson, festival director and vice president of events, Cannes Lions. “The community has evolved into a global movement of women and the impact of the programme has reached far beyond the Festival week.”
The 15 participants receive a VIP Cannes Lions experience each, which includes a complimentary pass, accommodation and travel to attend the Festival in 2021. The curated programme includes one-to-one mentoring sessions, networking events, masterclasses and workshops, as well as access to some of the industry’s most influential leaders.
“I am absolutely thrilled to be part of the See It Be It program. The theme of feminine leadership resonates with me because in my experience, the unique sensibility of female leadership can be transformative. I hope to be part of the next wave of those leaders,” Steel commented. “I can’t wait to soak up all the knowledge of the SIBI mentors, speakers and ambassadors as well as connect with the other women in the program.”
Cam Blackley, chief creative officer, M&C Saatchi, added, “I’m not surprised Allie has been recognised as a future leader by Cannes Lions and the SIBI mentors, and I’m looking forward to watching her continue to not only make a serious impact on the work but to also grow as a role model for more junior female creatives because of this honour.”
The 15 female participants are:
Geetanjali Jaiswal, Freelance, Creative Director, India
Roxana Nita, Group Creative Director, Cheil Romania
Andrea Auz, Creative Director, Paper, Ecuador
Leticia Rodrigues, Senior Art Director, Wunderman Thompson, Brazil
Javiera Wuth, Senior Copywriter, McCann, Chile
Ana Carolina Gomez Guzman, Social Media Director, Together W/, Mexico
Rosa Guerrero Cabral, Creative Supervisor, Publicis Dominicana, Dominican Republic
Lauren Ferreira, Creative Director, Droga5, USA
Tescia Deák, Creative Director, Grey West, USA
Mica Gallino, Creative Director, JOAN Creative, USA
Ellen Fromm, Senior Copywriter, Colenso BBDO, New Zealand
Rachel Chew, Creative Group Head, BLKJ, Singapore
Allie Steel, Senior Copywriter, M&C Saatchi, Australia
Denise Tee, Creative Director, Wunderman Thompson, Hong Kong
Nedal Ahmed, Senior Writer, 72andSunny Amsterdam, Netherlands
The women have already taken part in a mentoring scheme in partnership with Invisible Creatives, the talent platform that supports the underrepresented creative talent, created by Senta Slingerland, the founder of See It Be It and Maddy Kramer, associate art director, who participated in the inaugural See It Be It programme in 2014. The Mentor-at-Home initiative offers a talent database, job board and mentorship scheme to make mentorship more accessible and is an online, speed-dating style event where five mentees are matched with five mentors.
Benson added, “Many of our alumni have ascended the professional ladder and championed change in their organisations, countries and regions. It’s so exciting to welcome our 15 hugely talented creative females to the See It Be It community and to watch their future paths unfold.”
To date, over 100 women have gained a fully-funded place on the programme and many alumni have progressed into leadership positions, won Lions awards and held positions on Cannes Lions juries. To cultivate a community and global network of support and learning, the See It Be It events series has now reached over 4000 women in countries including the US, Canada, Singapore, Nigeria, Bulgaria, UK, Australia and Pakistan. The programme will be led by ambassador, Swati Bhattacharya, and Madonna Badger, chief creative officer and founder of Badger & Winters, will remain the See It Be It Chair.
Find out more about See it Be It on its website.