Institute for Women’s Leadership Milestones


  • Following several years of planning, the Institute for Women’s Leadership (IWL) is formed as a consortium at Douglass College.
  • NJ WomenCount is established to collect, analyze and publish data on the status of women in New Jersey.
  • Women’s Scholarship and Leadership is designated as a university growth area; and a university-wide committee is formed to identify priorities for internal funding.


  • Mary S. Hartman, former dean of Douglass College, becomes full-time director of the IWL.
  • IWL and the Institute for Research on Women create the Interdisciplinary Research Seminar for faculty and graduate students established through a seed grant from university funding and a grant to IWL from the Ford Foundation.
  • Ruth Dill Johnson Crockett Building at 162 Ryders Lane, New Brunswick, is dedicated, becoming location for IWL, Women’s Studies Program, and Center for Women and Work.
  • The Leadership Scholars Program is initiated through the Women’s Studies Program to provide undergraduates a two-year interdisciplinary experience to combine classwork, internships and social action projects in learning about leadership. Dr. Mary K. Trigg is hired to direct the program.
  • Wittenborn Scholars Residence is dedicated, providing convenient housing for visiting scholars associated with the IWL and member units.
  • The IWL and the Center for Women and Work collaborate to co-sponsor the Senior Leadership Program for Professional Women (SLP) to serve 24 corporate and professional women annually. SLP becomes the Executive Leadership Program which ran annually through 2015.
  • Talking Leadership: Conversations with Powerful Women is published as IWL’s first collaborative book.
  • Leadership Scholars Program gains approval as a university certificate program. The IWL receives a $200,000 endowment gift for the program.


  • Division on Women, NJ Department of Community Affairs and the IWL form a research partnership to renew NJ WomenCount.
  • The Department of Women’s and Gender Studies is established and PhD program is approved.
  • The IWL receives a $500,000 endowment grant from the Ford Foundation to establish the Visiting Global Associates Program to link international work at the Center for Women’s Global Leadership with IWL programs.
  • The IWL collaborates with Center for Women and Work to launch WINGS, a college-to-career mentoring program that links undergraduate students with professional women. Deloitte & Touche was the first corporate partner in this program.
  • Ford Foundation approves a two-year research grant to fund “Re-affirming Action: Designs for Diversity in Higher Education.”
  • The Division on Women, NJ Department of Community Affairs, grants $140,000 to the IWL to continue NJ WomenCount. When funding is completed in 2007, the IWL continues the project as Women’s Leadership Fact Sheets.
  • The IWL receives a $1,000,000 endowment gift from Gretchen and James L. Johnson for core support.
  • The IWL launches the annual Susan and Michael J. Angelides Endowed Lecture Series.


  • The IWL pilots the three-year High School Leadership Program at Snyder High School, Jersey City, as a component of the IWL Leadership Scholars Certificate Program.
  • The IWL launches Community, Leadership, Action & Service Project (CLASP) – to provide summer opportunities for undergraduates to learn about the needs of underserved populations in New Jersey. Funding provided by the J. Seward Johnson Sr. 1963 Charitable Trust.
  • The Institute for Women and Art (IWA) joins the IWL consortium becoming the seventh member unit. In 2016 the IWA is renamed the Center for Women in the Arts and Humanities.
  • Rutgers re-affirms the importance of women’s education, establishing Douglass Residential College as the first residential college within its re-organized undergraduate structure in New Brunswick.
  • The Office for the Advancement of Women in Science, Engineering and Mathematics joins the IWL consortium as the eighth member unit.
  • The IWL Leadership Scholars Certificate Program is named the 2009 recipient of the Wynona M. Lipman Award for Empowerment by the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs, Division on Women, and the Commission on the Status of Women.
  • Transforming Lives Documentary Film Project launched to provide IWL Leadership Scholars opportunities to interview women leaders and produce short documentary films based on the interview for web distribution.
  • Leading the Way: Young Women’s Activism for Social Change edited by Mary K. Trigg is published as a collection of personal essays written by twenty-one graduates of the IWL Leadership Scholars Certificate Program.
  • IWL founding Director Mary S. Hartman retires. Lisa Hetfield serves as interim Director.


  • Alison R. Bernstein is appointed the IWL Director. Bernstein begins her five-year tenure July 1, 2011, identifying three new areas of focus: Women & Health, Women, Media, & Tech, and Women & Philanthropy. She also initiates the “Dialogues with the Director Series”, which examines emerging trends for women in leadership, explores issues of social justice, and initiates new areas of interest for the IWL consortium.
  • The IWL and the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology (GSAPP) pilot GROW (Girls Realizing Opportunities in the World), a three-year program to provide adolescent girls in foster care, relative care and adoptive families with resources needed to overcome adversity and succeed in life through group psychotherapy and mentoring relationships with Rutgers IWL students. Funding provided by the Cape Branch Foundation.
  • The IWL endowment total funds raised passes the $3,000,000 mark.
  • IWL initiates a collaborative project with Barnard and Spelman Colleges to develop feminist leadership studies as an area of research and curricular development.
  • The Center on Violence Against Women and Children, School of Social Work, joins the IWL consortium, making the ninth participating member.
  • In February, 2013 IWL signs a contract with Rutgers University Press for a series of eight books of case studies in Women’s Leadership under the title Junctures in Women’s Leadership.
  • The IWL establishes a partnership with the African Gender Institute, Cape Town University, South Africa, and Barnard College, to conduct summer study abroad opportunities for undergraduate students. Courses ran in summer 2013 and 2015.
  • In October 2014, in collaboration with the Rutgers School of Communication and Information and the School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Women's and Gender Studies, the IWL launches the campaign to create The Gloria Steinem Endowed Chair in Media, Culture, and Feminist Studies and the Gloria Steinem program fund. The Gloria Steinem Chair Steering Committee, co-chaired by Geraldine Laybourne and Subha Barry is formed to lead the fundraising effort.
  • In 2015, the Gloria Steinem Media Mentoring Program is piloted, focusing on pairing recent Rutgers graduates pursuing careers in media with successful people in their field. Initial funding is provided by the Revson Foundation.
  • In March, 2015, IWL and Women’s and Gender Studies host a conference for Big10/CIC colleagues: "Collaborating for Success: Sharing Ideas, Developing Initiatives, and Overcoming Challenges."


  • As of March, 2016, Susan and Michael J. Angelides Lecturers include: Pulitzer Prize- winning author Isabel Wilkerson; Academy Award-winning actor Geena Davis; feminist icon Gloria Steinem; filmmaker Ava DuVernay; and playwright, activist, and author Eve Ensler.
  • In May, 2016 the IWL launches the Junctures in Women’s Leadership Series. The first two books include: Junctures in Women’s Leadership: Social Movements edited by Mary K. Trigg and Alison R. Bernstein; and Junctures in Women’s Leadership: Business, edited by Lisa Hetfield and Dana M. Britton.
  • Alison R. Bernstein, Director of the Institute for Women’s Leadership passes away on June 30, 2016.
  • Lisa Hetfield is appointed the Interim Director of the IWL.
  • In July, 2016, the Gloria Steinem Media Mentoring Program is renamed the Alison R. Bernstein Media Mentoring Program.
  • The documentary film, “From the Boarding House to the Board Room: 250 Years of Women at Rutgers” produced by award-winning filmmaker June Cross, premieres on campus. The collaborative project is initiated with seed funding from the newly established Mary S.Hartman, Edwin M. Hartman, and Samuel M. Hartman Founder’s Fund.
  • Junctures in Women’s Leadership: Social Movements is selected for Choice Magazine’s Annual Outstanding Academic Title list for 2016. Outstanding works are selected “for their excellence in scholarship and presentation, the significance of their contribution to the field, and their value as important—often the first—treatment of their subject.”
  • The Anita Ashok Datar Lecture on Women’s Global Health is established.
  • The New Normal? Women, Media, and Politics symposium is held as the first program of the Gloria Steinem Initiative in collaboration with the Center for American Women and Politics and the School of Communication and Information.
  • The IWL completes its first self-study and external review.
  • On June 15, 2017 the Rutgers Board of Governors votes to approve the Gloria Steinem Endowed Chair in Media, Culture, and Feminist Studies. The Gloria Steinem Endowed Chair in Media, Culture, and Feminist Studies, funded by more than 425 donors, including a dozen foundations and a matching pledge made possible by Rutgers President Robert Barchi, will immerse students in debate and scholarship about new media, social change and power structures.
  • In August, 2018 the IWL publishes Junctures in Women's Leadership: The Arts. Written by Judith K. Brodsky and Ferris Olin, this is the third book in the Junctures in Women Leadership series.
  • Naomi Klein, public intellectual whose best-selling explorations of social, economic and ecological injustice have made her a global thought-leader, welcomed as the inaugural Gloria Steinem Endowed Chair in Media, Culture and Feminist Studies at Rutgers University-New Brunswick on September 21, 2018.



Institute for Women’s Leadership
162 Ryders Lane
New Brunswick, NJ 08901-8555
P: 848.932.1463

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