New York State Council on Women and Girls

TOP New York State Council on Women and Girls
The Council

The New York State Council on Women and Girls membership is comprised of the heads of each State agency, ensuring that Commissioners incorporate the rights of women and girls into each program created and policy enacted. The Council is housed in the Executive Chamber of the Office of the Governor, emphasizing the centrality of its work to the overall goals of the Cuomo administration.

A Steering Committee representing women from academia, business, media, and non-profit/advocacy work will advise the Council and serve to elevate issues and concerns. The Steering Committee will meet with and advise agency heads, bringing together private sector experience with government action.

Chair: Melissa DeRosa, Secretary to the Governor 

Steering Committee Members: 

Amy Barasch, Executive Director, Her Justice 
Ana Oliveira, President and CEO, The New York Women's Foundation 
Andrea Miller, President, National Institute for Reproductive Health 
Audrey Gelman, CEO and Co-Founder, The Wing 
Beverly Cooper Neufield, Founder and President, POWHer New York 
Beverly Tillery, Executive Director, New York City Anti-Violence Project 
Brenda McDuffie, President and CEO, Buffalo Urban League 
Donna Szatkowski-Zych, partner at Deloitte 
Christene Barberich, Global Editor-in-Chief and Co-Founder, Refinery29 
Connie Neal, Executive Director, New York State Coalition Against Domestic Violence 
Cruz Bueno, Assistant Professor, SUNY New Paltz 
Dina Bakst, Co-Founder and Co-President, A Better Balance 
Donna Lieberman, Executive Director, New York Civil Liberties Union 
Eileen Fisher, Founder and Chairowman, EILEEN FISHER, Inc. 
Elsie McCabe Thompson, President, NYC Mission Society 
Eve Guillergan, Principal Attorney, Eve Guillergan PLLC 
Farah Tanis, Executive Director, Black Women's BluePrint 
Heather C. Briccetti, President and CEO, The Business Council of New York State, Inc. 
Hilda Rosario Escher, former President and CEO, Ibero American Action League 
Jaime Saunders, CEO, United Way of Greater Rochester 
June Jee, Board Member and Immediate Past President, OCA-NY 
Karen Ignagni, President and CEO, EmblemHealth 
Karen King, Executive Director, The Erie County Commission on the Status of Women 
Kathryn Wylde, President and CEO, Partnership for New York City 
Kimberlé Crenshaw, Professor of Law, Columbia Law School 
Dr. Kristina Johnson, Chancellor, The State University of New York (SUNY) 
Kristen Prata Browde, President, LGBT Bar Association 
Dr. Lilliam Barrios-Paoli, Senior Adviser to the President, Hunter College 
Liliana Gil Valletta, CEO and Co-Founder / Creator, CIEN+ / Dreamers Ventures 
Melanie Whelan, CEO, SoulCycle 
Michelle Ebanks, President, Essence Communications Inc. 
Michelle Johnson, Chair, YWCAs of New York State 
Pamela Shifman, former Executive Director of NoVo Foundation 
Rebecca Minkoff, Creative Director and Co-Founder, Rebecca Minkoff 
Renee Flagler, Executive Director, Girls, Inc Long Island 
Robin Chappelle Golston, CEO, Planned Parenthood Empire State Acts 
Ruchi Shah, Founder and CEO, Mosquitoes Be Gone 
Sonia Ossorio, President and CEO, National Organization for Women New York 
Stephanie Redish Hofmann, Director of Agency Development, Google 
Sulma Arzu-Brown, Children's book Author and Director of Operations, NYC Hispanic Chamber of Commerce 

Areas of Impact
Areas of Impact

Education: Increasing educational opportunities and outcomes for women and girls in New York.

Economic Opportunity: Working to help bring New York women and girls out of poverty and provide opportunities for success.

Workforce Equity: Advancing women’s equality in the workplace through equitable policies and increasing women’s entrepreneurship.

Leadership: Increasing women’s representation in top leadership positions in the public, private, and non-profit sectors.

Health Care: Ensuring equitable, affordable health care and securing reproductive justice.

Child Care: Ensuring access to safe affordable care

Safety: Fighting and preventing violence against women and girls in all forms that it takes.

STEM: Leading the way for women and girls to study and enter the STEM fields.

Intersectionality: Advancing a women and girls agenda that takes into account the intersectional experiences of women—including race, color, religion, age, ethnicity, national origin, immigration status, disability, sexual orientation, and gender identity.


COVID-19 Maternity Task Force Chair Derosa Announces Increased Access to Midwife-Led Birth Centers June 16, 2020

COVID-19 Domestic Violence Task Force Releases Initial Recommendations June 11, 2020

Task Force Launched to Find Innovative Solutions to Domestic Violence Crisis May 20, 2020

COVID-19 Maternity Task Force Releases Initial Recommendations April 29, 2020

COVID-19 Maternity Task Force Launched April 20, 2020

New Sub-Committee Formed for the Advancement of Women in Leadership in Financial Services Industry October 16, 2019

Governor Cuomo Unveils the 2019 Women's Justice Agenda February 19, 2019

Governor Cuomo Signs Legislation Protecting Women's Reproductive Rights January 22, 2019

On Latina Equal Pay Day, Council on Women and Girls Hosts Panel on Pay Gap Afflicting Latina Women November 1, 2018

Finalized Materials and Guidance Released on New York's Sexual Harassment Prevention Laws October 1, 2018

Council on Women and Girls Hosts Forum with Women Leaders in Buffalo on Pay Gap Afflicting Black Women September 28, 2018

Building on Efforts to Target Maternal Mortality and Reduce Racial Disparities in Health Outcomes September 26, 2018

New Actions to Ensure Diverse, Inclusive, and Safe Workplaces August 23, 2018

Actions to Advance Equality in New York August 15, 2018

On Black Women's Equal Pay Day, Council on Women and Girls and Essence Magazine Co-Host Forum August 7, 2018

New Multi-Agency Efforts to Combat Maternal Depression May 17, 2018

"If You Can See It You Can Be It" - A Day for Girls to Experience a Broad Range of Career Possibilities April 26, 2018

Comprehensive Initiative to Target Maternal Mortality and Reduce Racial Disparities in Outcomes April 23, 2018

Nation's Largest Investment in Computer Science Education April 9, 2018

Legislation passes to Ensure Equal Access to Diaper Changing Stations April 5, 2018

Actions to Improve Access to IVF and Fertility Preservation Services March 1, 2018

2018 Women's Agenda for New York: Equal Rights, Equal Opportunity January 11, 2018

Op-Ed by Melissa Derosa: Why States Need to Step Up Now to Protect Women & Girls August 2, 2017

Governor Cuomo Launches First-Ever New York State Council on Women and Girls August 2, 2017