Aiming to connect – Focus on awarness, fundraising

By Todd Cohen

RALEIGH, N.C. — Focusing on policy work and research to tackle the interconnected challenges of poverty, racism and sexism tops the agenda of the new president of a statewide advocacy group for women and girls.

“I want to be part of bringing hope to women across social strata,” says Susan Markham, president of NC Equity.

Markham, a North Carolina native who previously was director of government relations for the Raleigh law firm Everett, Gaskins, Hancock & Stevens, was named in September to succeed Brenda Summers as president of NC Equity. Summers left to become a consultant to nonprofits.

Building on NC Equity’s previous work as a strong voice for women throughout the state, Markham says, her immediate goals will to boost awareness of the group, particularly among younger women, and to strengthen its fundraising efforts.

To help do that and to celebrate the group’s 15th anniversary next year, she says, she plans to hire a development director, revive the group’s annual fund drive and to hold an event to connect women who have made a difference in the state with a younger generation of women.

NC Equity also plans in January to release “Working Hard Is Not Enough,” a joint report prepared the N.C. Justice and Community Development Center.

The report, she says, will show “how and why more than one million families in the state are not sharing in the state’s prosperity.”

Markham also plans next year to revamp NC Equity’s Web site to better advance the group’s work in policy, advocacy, research and education.    

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