"Exhibiting You" - Story

Tiffany Dufu

Submitted: 08/17/2011

Tiffany's Selections

If Women Ran Hip Hop

Immediately took me back to those summer days when I sojourned to 7-11 to buy Now & Laters. Everything was pink: the flowered bike, my jelly sandals and bracelets, even the beads that swung from my braids. But the Queen Latifah/MC Lyte/Salt&Pepa rhymes blasting from my Walkman became the soundtrack for my feminism. Go to the selection>>

Two Million Women Leaders and Counting

Whenever someone suggests that The White House Project should go international I smile and say, “Have you seen the US world ranking for women’s political leadership? I think we need women from other countries to come teach us how to start our own revolution!” I have so much appreciation for women globally who lead with courage in the midst of tremendous adversity. Go to the selection >>

Hero: Um Ala

Take that Anne Marie Slaughter. Um Ala has managed to “have it all” through a mind blowing work ethic, resiliency, flexing her economic power muscles and engaging men in the process. She feels most proud of her shift in attitude. Believing you are the most powerful change agent in her own journey is the first step to igniting your leadership. Go to the selection >>

Playing with Mexico’s colors in my heart

Most women at the highest levels of leadership played organized sports when they were young. The desire to achieve mastery and to be recognized for it is how Anna Fels defines ambition. Lorena Ochoa not only embodies ambition she understands that to whom much is given, much is required. She is fiercely swinging forward – and reaching backward to help others. Go to the selection >>

Limited Choices, Compromised Dreams?

The voices of these millennial women reflect the challenges of a new generation in this global economy. Independence is one of their most important goals – yet self-sufficiency is impossible without employment. How do you exercise your agency to create impact in the world without economic power? How, then, do you lead? Go to the selection >>

Stand As One

Swapping out Beyonce’s “Run the World(Girls)” for this new anthem. The next time someone laments how young women today aren’t feminists I shall send them this. I thought I was optimistic that our vision of all levels of leadership diversified with women is within reach. Yet these young women take it even further by declaring our success in the present – not the future – tense. Go to the selection >>

Africa’s New Entrepreneurs

When you invest in a girl, you invest in a nation. My home on the continent is Ghana and now I can’t wait to get to Zambia to meet Penelope and Ng’andwe. True leadership development is about helping people to align their beliefs and their values with their agency and ability to make a difference. These women have made impact for entire communities. Go to the selection>>

Never Too Old to Run!

Our republic wasn’t designed for any of us to sit on the sidelines and Granny D has literally walked across the entire country. I’m sure in the dictionary next to civic engagement is her photo. Until our political leadership reflects the diversity of American perspectives the biggest crisis we face is a crisis of leadership. Granny D reminds us that we are the leaders we wish to see in the world. Go to the selection >>

The Women of North Richmond

Every one of these images reminds me of someone in my family. An aunty…a sister…a little cousin. You do not see their circumstance. You see their response, their ingenuity, their strength. As we work to get women to the top we must always remember those who continue to lead from the foot of the table. Go to the selection >>


We will never realize our full contribution as women if we do not challenge the cultural myth that our primary role is as wife and mother. We can simultaneously contribute to both the public and private sphere and our ability to lead seamlessly between the two represents untapped potential for the planet. Let’s unleash the guardswomen. Go to the selection >>

Curator's Statement: Tiffany Dufu on Leadership

My life’s work is advancing women and girls. It’s why I’m on the planet. So my life is simple. I pretty much know what’s on my tombstone and I’m just project managing my life backwards. Any woman has the ability to be a leader. Women around the world are leaders in their own communities, across many sectors, and within their families. 

And yet, many women do not realize that they have leadership capability. The White House Project provides women with larger ecosystems of support, through leadership trainings and networking events, and in turn their confidence and their ambition and their leadership capacity get bigger. These stories from IMOW exhibitions highlight the leadership of women worldwide, the challenges facing the generation of women entering the workforce, and women across America in community leadership positions. Most importantly, the stories show that women can find a balance between the public and private sphere.

About Tiffany Dufu

In the summer of 2012, Tiffany was chosen as one of the 60 notable members of the League of Extraordinary Women by Fast Company—a list that includes Oprah Winfrey, Abby Disney and Alicia Keyes. Raised in the Pacific Northwest, the daughter of a homemaker and a minister, Tiffany was an early feminist who challenged the perceptions of adults around her who often insisted that “little girls can’t lead.” She knew that she needed to effect change, and also wanted to be public about it—so that other girls could be leaders, too. Now, as President of The White House Project, Tiffany is moving forward as a positive force, igniting the leadership of women in both business and politics. She continues to be an active and visible member of the women’s leadership community—honored by Mattel in 2011 as one of their 10 Women to Watch and by the National Council for Research on Women in 2012 as one of 30 women making change in the world today. Tiffany joined The White House Project in 2006, forging new partnerships, strengthening the Corporate Council, and refining the organization’s strategy. Having raised nearly $20 million toward the cause of women and girls, she has been featured in The Seattle Times, The New York Times, on NPR, and is a frequent speaker on women’s leadership and nonprofit fundraising. In March 2012, Tiffany was named one of 19 “women who are leading the way” in the Huffington Post amongst luminaries such as Sheryl Sandberg and Hillary Clinton. Follow Tiffany on Twitter and Facebook.

Get to Know Tiffany Dufu

Learn more about Tiffany Dufu and why she's involved in IMOW's Curating Change.

  • IMOW Matters to me Because...a diversity of voices is the key to every endeavor. IMOW allows women (and men too!) of all ages to be inspired—by seeing and reading others stories, we learn something new about ourselves. It also allows us to know there is a collective of women who are all striving to improve the world around us.
  • A Mantra to Live By…If you want something you’ve never had before, then you have to do something you’ve never done before.
  • I Exhibit Change By…Acting as my own change agent everyday. Everyone needs to authorize herself to take action.

Take Action

Learn which causes and organizations matter most to Tiffany Dufu and how you can connect with them.

The White House Project

I am the President of The White House Project. The mission of The White House Project is to ignite the leadership of women in business and politics. We connect, coach, and educate an ever-expanding alumnae network of 14,000 nationwide. With a focus on women age 21-35, we activate the ambition, creativity, and skills necessary for innovative and effective leadership.

Seattle Girls School

SGS is a 5th through 8th grade middle school committed to empowering young women to be leaders in their communities through a challenging academic program focused on collaboration, integration, and real-world problem solving.

Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers

The Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP), a unit of the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, is nationally recognized as the leading source of scholarly research and current data about American women’s political participation. Its mission is to promote greater knowledge and understanding about women's participation in politics and government and to enhance women's influence and leadership in public life.



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