June 1, 2001 - Mortar Board: Morocco RPCV Barbara Ferris gives keynote address to the 2001 Mortar Board National Conference

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Morocco: Peace Corps Morocco : The Peace Corps in Morocco: June 1, 2001 - Mortar Board: Morocco RPCV Barbara Ferris gives keynote address to the 2001 Mortar Board National Conference

By Admin1 (admin) on Sunday, July 20, 2003 - 11:27 am: Edit Post

Morocco RPCV Barbara Ferris gives keynote address to the 2001 Mortar Board National Conference

Morocco RPCV Barbara Ferris gives keynote address to the 2001 Mortar Board National Conference

A Passion for Leadership
2001 Conference Keynote Address
by Dana Viglietta

Barbara Ferris, founder and president of the International Women’s Democracy Center in Washington, D.C., gave a thoughtful and inspirational keynote address to the 2001 National Conference participants in Columbus, Ohio. Ms. Ferris highlighted her travels around the world to serve, educate and help support the efforts of women in democratic societies to run for offices.

She discussed her work with the Peace Corps - an organization that she has been involved with for many years. “Lillian Carter, who was a Peace Corps volunteer in India said, ‘I didn’t dream that in this remote corner of the world, I would discover what life is really all about - sharing yourself with others,’ ” said Ferris. Before creating the International Women’s Democracy Center, Ms. Ferris served as the Women in Development Director for the Peace Corps for five years. Her work has led her to many countries around the world to facilitate workshops and seminars for women in many different career fields.

Having served as a Peace Corps volunteer herself, Ms. Ferris noted her experiences in Morocco, which included learning the Arabic language, traveling across the Sahara desert with friends, and adapting to cultural change. She also worked on a fact-finding mission to Syria, Lebanon and Israel prior to her Peace Corps volunteer service.

During her keynote address, Ms. Ferris had many notable messages for the members of Mortar Board including the similarity between the Preamble of the Mortar Board Constitution and some goals of the United Nations. “The Preamble to the Mortar Board Constitution is as powerful as any of the many United Nations declarations from global conferences that I have worked on over the past two decades. Your purpose to promote equal opportunities among all people and to emphasize the advancement of the status of women has been a long time goal of not only the United Nations itself, but of many of the member nations - usually without much success. As you may know, women worldwide spend an average of 17 hours a day in both household support and income generating activities, they have access to less than 10% of the world’s resources and they own less than 1% of the world’s land,” said Ferris.

As Ferris ended her address to the National Conference participants, she summarized the honor of being selected for membership in Mortar Board. “As you move through your lives of scholarship, leadership and service, you will be recognized by many - family, community, employers, employees and others, but your selection by your peers in recognition of your gifts and talents which have brought you together is - I believe - the very highest of compliments.”

Keeping her ties with the Peace Corps, Ms. Ferris chaired the 40th Anniversary Celebration for the Peace Corps in 2001, and she frequently addresses schools and organizations, offering information on how governments, groups and communities can include women as equals in economic, social and political development. To reach the International Women’s Democracy Center, visit the web site at www.iwdc.org or at the following address: IWDC, 1730 Rhode Island Ave. NW, Suite 715, Washington, D.C. 20036. Phone number: 202-530-0563; Email: washdc@iwdc.org.

Barbara Ferris giving her 2001 National Conference kenote address.

“Volunteer work helped me discover my real passion in life and it crystallized the direction of my work - never once did I ever wonder what I would do with my life - I always knew that public service was my passion - even though I come from family business.

The power of passion in leadership is rooted in the satisfaction and force that comes with finding deep spiritual meaning and purpose in your life - and once you have found it, being willing to stay with it in spite of the hardships.”

- Barbara Ferris
Founder, International
Women’s Democracy Center

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Story Source: Mortar Board

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Morocco



By j.b.sineh ( on Thursday, April 01, 2004 - 11:17 pm: Edit Post

please sent all bulletin concerning peace corps.

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