Are Media’s marie claire welcomed guests to its Power Talks event at Machine Hall in Sydney on Wednesday.
Hosted by the fashion and beauty publication’s new editor, Georgie Abay, the evening was a unique opportunity for attendees to gain valuable insights into the concept of power from five extraordinary women who have blazed their own trails to success.
Each panellist shared stories of triumph, hard-won successes and their most important life lessons.
Kicking off the evening was the star of Netflix’s Heartbreak High and disability rights activist and advocate Chloé Hayden, followed by fashion designer Camilla Franks, and a Q and A session led by Abay with entrepreneur Anna Lahey from Vida Glow.
UNSW professor and human rights lawyer Megan Davis spoke about what the “Yes” vote campaign means, while actor and comedian Celeste Barber rounded out the event’s talks.
Each speaker offered career advice, motivation, and all the must-know how-to’s in a truly special event that was filled with laughs and learnings.
Barber told attendees: “For me, being brave means I’m doing something important. I’m fighting a fight. It also means not everyone is going to like it, and I’ve learnt to be resilient. You can raise $51 million for the worst natural disaster this country has ever seen, and people will pick holes in it. You can stand in front of parliament fighting for that money to be used in the way it was intended. You can fight the High Court of this country and beg them to consider people and the situation they are in, and it still won’t be enough.”
“I get asked a lot what my advice is for young girls, and I always say to them ‘Don’t peak in high school, just get through it’. The people who peak in high school end up on The Bachelor, or worse, Married At First Sight. It’s not what I want for these young queens.”
Professor Davis said of the upcoming Voice referendum: “A yes vote in the referendum [on 14 October] means we wake up to a better, fairer, a more equal, more inclusive and more expansive idea of what our country can be. The change will be empowering for our community both in terms of the acceptance and love that we feel for all Australians. It will also start to empower us to allow women’s voices to flourish, and it will allow Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander human voices to flourish.”
Hayden, acclaimed actor, best-selling author and award-winning disability rights activist. said of her personal journey: “My powerlessness was shoved into my face each and every day at school by my teachers, by my peers, by society, by the belief that my difference made me less. It was forced into me. The reality is, I am powerful – not in spite of my difference, but because of it.”
Abay said: “marie claire is a brand that empowers women. We believe in the power of storytelling to drive change and spark collective action. Nothing makes me feel more empowered than being in a room filled with incredible women. There’s so much we can all learn from women’s resilience, strength and determination.”
Power Talks event was proudly presented by Pandora, and additional sponsors included Kerastase, FRANKIE4, Vida Glow and Stella.
Catherine Rose, Pandora marketing director, said: “Pandora was thrilled to be the presenting partner for the marie claire Power Talks event. As a brand that gives a voice to people’s loves, Pandora is passionate about empowering women, so the partnership was a natural fit for us. We look forward to connecting and celebrating female strength and resilience across a range of different pillars that are extremely important to Pandora.”
Hilary McMillan, FRANKIE4 chief executive officer, said: “At FRANKIE4, our excitement about joining forces with marie claire and Power Talks is palpable! We believe this partnership is a pivotal step in aligning our mutual passions and values. Our brand is steadfast in our mission to elevate women from the ground up, providing innovative, supportive and stylish footwear that empowers women to walk confidently in every aspect of their lives. We’re more than a footwear brand; we’re advocates for women’s well-being and champions of their unique journeys.
“Aligning with Power Talks, a platform echoing our ethos of empowerment and inspiration, felt like a natural and exhilarating progression. We’re looking forward to stepping into a future where our combined efforts will undoubtedly foster positive change and elevate women to new heights!”
Top image: Chloé Hayden, Camilla Franks, Georgie Abay, Celeste Barber and Anna Lahey