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Women to Watch Foundation to raise funds for women’s health program

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The Women to Watch Foundation has been launched to support programs that advance women and girls across the world.

The foundation, launched in London and New York as part of the 2017 Women to Watch award events, is a 501(c)(3) with 100% of the proceeds going to humanitarian initiatives.

Linda Lane, president of Newport Beach, California-based Harbor Health Systems, a unit of One Call Care Management, and foundation chair, said the foundation emerged from a discussion between David North, president and chief executive officer of Memphis, Tennessee-based third-party administrator Sedgwick Claims Management Services Inc., Ms. Lane and Business Insurance about their desire to create a vehicle that would connect Women to Watch honorees to causes that they could support that would further elevate the health and well-being of women and girls.

“We all strongly believed that we needed to make this leap from recognizing personal and professional success to turn that toward social awareness,” Ms. Lane said. “From that discussion, the foundation was born.”

For the first two years, the foundation will focus its philanthropic efforts on the Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon, an affiliate of the Dallas-based George W. Bush Institute, which helps educate, screen and treat women and girls for cervical cancer in Sub-Sahara Africa and Peru, where more than 92,000 women develop cervical cancer each year.

“What we wanted to do was to create a very focused initiative,” Ms. Lane said, adding that the foundation’s board will focus on raising $2 million over the next two years to support the Pink Ribbon organization.

Ms. Lane was able to join the organization on a trip to Botswana and Namibia to visit facilities it supports.

“They are working to eradicate what is a completely preventable disease,” she said. “Because they are an emerging organization, being only five years old, we have the opportunity with our $2 million pledge to really make an impact in what they’re able to do.”

Mr. North and Sedgwick have already pledged $250,000 toward the $2 million goal and Ms. Lane said she “believes strongly we could actually surpass that quite easily.”

After two years, the next board members comprising of Women to Watch honorees will pick up the baton and choose the next organization focusing on the advancement of women and girls to support, Ms. Lane said.

“The foundation is something created by Women to Watch for Women to Watch and although (Pink Ribbon) is our initial focus, this is something that will create a legacy for other women to come and take this and continue to move it forward,” she said. “The way in which we touch and serve the women and girls around the world can continue to grow exponentially.”

Women to Watch is a Business Insurance awards program recognizing outstanding female executives in the risk management and insurance sector, which began in 2006.

For more information on the Women to Watch Foundation click here.