I Want to Be the President—Not the Secretary, Ellen Malcolm
When EMILY’s List founder Ellen Malcolm was growing up, her mother hoped she’d become a secretary to a great leader. But Malcolm wanted to be the leader.
ELLEN MALCOLM: When I was in high school, my mother kept trying to get me to learn how to type. In those days, there really were only a couple of things you could do in the professional world. You could be a teacher. You could be a nurse. Or, like my mother, you could be a secretary. And I would refuse. I'm not going to learn how to type. I don't want to be a secretary.
Finally, one day, she said to me, Ellen, I don't think you understand. You don't have to be in the typing pool. If you work hard, you can work your way up through the system and you can be secretary to the president when he's making all kinds of exciting decisions about the future of the company. And I looked at my mother and I said, but Mom, I want to make those decisions about the future of the company.