Jacki Zehner On Women, Money, and Changing the World

October 26, 2016

The Art of Talking: Lessons from TED Talks

ted1As published on LinkedIn Influencers on October 26th, 2016.

Note: TED Women 2016 begins today in San Francisco. Join the conversation on Twitter #TedWomen2016 and/or join via lifestream.

In November of 2012, I was honoured to give a TED Talk as part of the annual TEDxWomen conference, which was held that year in Washington, DC. In preparation for this event, I spent hours and hours working on my talk, going over each and every sentence. I somehow thought it was a good idea to try to memorize a 17 minute talk, and so I would walk the hills of Park City going over it again and again. To this day, I’m immensely proud of the talk I delivered. It was titled “Strap In”, and in it, I talked about gender equality and why it was time for each and every one of us to strap in and commit ourselves to creating a more gender balanced world through every means at our disposal. I spoke from the heart, as this is the issue in the world that I’m most passionate about, and I hope that those in attendance, as well as those who have since viewed the talk online, felt that passion shining through.

That being said, I’m always the first to admit that there’s always room for improvement. I guess the powers that be at TED thought so as well, because my talk was not posted on TED.com. I have since learned that…

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October 03, 2016

It’s Gonna Be Okay

As published on LinkedIn Influencers on September 28th, 2016.

One of my best friends is the amazing Amy Rees Anderson. Amy is the Managing Partner and Founder of REES Capital, an angel firm that provides entrepreneurs and business executives support and guidance. Amy is also an author and serves as a weekly contributor to Forbes and the Huffington Post. Every single day she does a blog post, and this was just too good not to share. If you can, just take a minute and watch the video, and maybe even dance along!

The song is called “It’s Gonna Be Okay” – the lyrics were written by Andy Grammar and Dave Bassett and the song is performed by Piano Guy Al Van der Beek.

Sometimes you just need to have some fun!

The Lyrics…

Doubt is a broken record that plays inside my head.

I try to turn it down, but I can’t quite drown it out.

I’m tortured every day, these never ending worries,

Pulling on my sleeves.

So many times now I was supposed to tap out.

All the walls would fall down around me,

All anybody would tell me,

Is all that bad news how it’s gonna fall through.

But no matter what they say oh what they say. 

It’s gonna be, gonna be, OKAY!

It’s gonna be, gonna be, OKAY!

No matter what you’ve been through here you are.

No matter if you think you’re falling apart.

It’s gonna be OKAY! And there is a battle raging in your heart but, you must win.


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September 29, 2016

Why Do You Give?

Jacki and HelenAs published on LinkedIn Influencers on September 23rd, 2016.

This past Saturday morning, in a room full of over 100 amazing, thoughtful, passionate, and committed women, and a few incredible men, something magical happened. It was so special and so moving, I will now refer to my work as before September 17, 2016 and after. I wrote the following article on little sleep, very little sleep, and thought long and hard about whether to post it here on LinkedIn. My rational self was tempted not to (too personal, too long, too story driven, too something…), but instead I am sharing it as is; long and deeply personal.

So be warned, the estimated reading time is 10 to 15 minutes. Maybe more. (Don’t you love it when they do that on the top of posts?) But if you are interested in the topic of GIVING, interested in the story of my involvement with Women Moving Millions, interested in philanthropic engagement, and/or work for a non-profit organization in some way, I hope you will find it worth your time.

The Backstory 

First, let me set the context. For the past 6 years I have worked full-time as a volunteer to help move Women Moving Millions (WMM), an organization that started as a campaign to encourage women to make million dollar gifts to women’s funds, into a community of philanthropists committed to mobilizing unprecedented resources for the advancement of women and girls. I am what I…

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