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Women Leaders Honored at Sundance Film Festival Event

Zions Bank event part of mission to support women who are making a difference in their community and workplace.

Kallee Feuz Feb 4, 2020

Facing fears and taking risks emerged as a theme of the Sundance Film Festival 2020 Women’s Leadership Celebration on Jan. 30 at the Hilton Hotel in Salt Lake City.  

In prerecorded video segments, each of the eight honorees recalled a time when they took that a risk that transformed their lives or the lives of others.

Maria Fernanda Espinosa and Emma Nicholson
Her Excellency Maria Fernanda Espinosa and Baroness Emma Nicholson of Winterbourne.

For former United Nations President María Fernanda Espinosa, that was when, as Minister of Defense, she was placed in charge of her country’s military operations, comprised mostly of men.

Baroness Emma Nicholson of Winterbourne, a member of the British House of Lords, talked about going undercover into Iraq in the 1990s, posing as a medical doctor to assess conditions and secure international aid for Iraqis suffering under the Saddam Hussein regime. 

At Thursday’s event, Nicholson was recognized for her humanitarian leadership and the work of her AMAR Foundation, which has helped thousands of displaced people in the Middle East. Espinosa received a Global Leadership award for promoting inclusive and sustainable cities and communities throughout the world.

Several of the six college president honorees cited the applying for their college’s top spot, often as the first woman in that role, as an example of stepping in the unknown.

Today, women lead half of Utah’s 10 major public and private colleges and 60% of the state’s college students. And women are at the helm of seven of the 11 colleges in the Mountain West athletic conference

“Nationally, women comprise only 30% of college presidents, so we really are trailblazers out here in the West,” Zions Bank CEO Scott Anderson said.

Scott Anderson of Zions Bank
Zions Bank President and CEO Scott Anderson.

As part of the Women’s Leadership Celebration, Pat Mitchell, Sundance Institute Chair of the Board of Directors, and the first woman president of both CNN and PBS, discussed her book, “Becoming a Dangerous Woman: Embracing Risk to Change the World” with filmmaker and actress Amy Redford.

Amy Redford and Pat Mitchell.
Amy Redford and Pat Mitchell.

This is the seventh year that Zions Bank and Sundance Institute have hosted the event focused on women leaders. Zions Bank hosts the event as part of its mission to support women who are making a difference in their community and workplace. In addition, Zions Bank fosters growth and promotion of its own women employees.

American Banker magazine listed Zions Bank’s senior-level women among the “Most Powerful Women in Banking” in September 2019.

Global Leadership:
María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés, President of the 73rd Session of the UN General Assembly

Humanitarian Leadership:
Baroness Emma Nicholson of Winterbourne, British House of Lords

Leadership in Education:

Kallee Feuz is Public Relations Officer for Zions Bank.

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