What Women Have to Say About International Women’s Day

Some powerful insights from the women at Collibra

Today is International Women’s Day. Across every industry, and in just about every country, women have come so far. There is more work to be done as we drive towards gender equality for a sustainable future, but we wanted to recognize some of the advancements we are seeing across our industry to promote gender equity, advance and recognize women in leadership positions and open up more opportunities for women in the workforce.

There is a lot to celebrate. And at Collibra, we are excited that we have four awesome female executives leading this company across product, legal, marketing and engineering. But we have women in every geo and in every function at Collibra that are making a difference. And we wanted to share some wisdom and words from these women with all of you. Because we are all about breaking the bias. And what better way to lift each other up, than to write about our shared experiences, learnings and advice.

We won’t pretend we have all the answers on this topic. But we definitely have some great insights.


On how data is impacting the lives of women across the globe

The impacts of data on the lives of women are truly never ending.  Data is everywhere and the more we can understand data and measure things the more we can improve.  One giant step with using data to impact women is through our very own diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives.  Tracking gender diversity and equality has helped to bring more women into the workforce and provide them with equal pay.

-Laura Sellers, Chief Product Officer

On what it means to be a women in Tech & STEM

Working in technology means being comfortable with continuous change, knowing it’s okay (and often expected) to question the status quo, and being focused on solutions.  A key to success is knowing the value of bringing others together through relationships so teams align strategically and create a clear plan for execution and change.

As a woman in technology, you need to leverage your ability to build relationships, be a champion for other women across the org, and know that you have permission every day to share your voice and opinion.  You need to be brave and know that your ideas and suggestions are welcome. Take a seat at the table (don’t sit along the wall) – literally and figuratively. It couldn’t be a better time to be a woman in the tech industry and working for a place like Collibra that embraces all aspects of DE&I.  This is your time to shine, know your value, and say yes to Tech/STEM careers and the value you can bring. 

-Stacey Moore, VP of IT

On dispelling the  “myth”  about being a woman in Tech or STEM

When we talk about increasing gender diversity in tech, there is often a focus on the diversity of the pipeline at the entry level. While that is important, there are also a lot of women who maybe didn’t start their career in computer science, but they have a STEM background and are brilliant and fast learners. 

I’ve had great success in giving opportunities to women from different backgrounds and at different stages in their careers who were interested in switching to software engineering. We can attract more women to the industry if we are open minded and look for talent in the places that are less obvious.

-Madalina Tanasie, Chief Technology Officer

On how women can support other women in their careers

There’s a harmful stereotype that women don’t support each other in the workplace. It’s said that we have to compete with one another in order to rise in our careers – it’s biased and based on untrue depictions of women. Unfortunately, this bias often has negative implications too. 

Personally, so many of the sponsors and mentors that I’ve had throughout my career have been women. Data companies can enable women to support each other through promoting a wide and consistent variety of opportunities. When these are promoted equitably, in a way that is accessible to many, companies retain women.

-Melissa Mavlanova-August,  Global Head of Equity and Impact 

On why women should pursue a career in Data and Tech

There are so many opportunities for women today in tech and data across a wide range of roles. It’s a really exciting time to be working in this industry. There are careers that run the gamut. And many do not involve coding or PhDs–like Data Privacy, Data Ethics and Data Governance

Across these roles, women bring diverse perspectives to the table. This helps shape the tools we use and the approaches we take. It makes what we use and build stronger. It gives us perspective. And we owe it to ourselves and the next generation of women to help shape the future of technology, to shape the narrative, to influence decisions and to pave new pathways. This is what is going to make us all more successful. Men and women alike. But women need to be active participants to make this happen. The opportunities are there. We just need to reach for them.

-Simla Sivanandan, Senior Data Intelligence Manager 

On 3 key pieces of advice  for women looking to get into a career in Data and Tech

  • Allow yourself to dream big: shoot for the moon so you have a chance to reach the stars. The world needs dreamers. Why? Because dreams act as a compass. And when they materialize they radiate all around us.
  • Lead with facts: data is the greatest way to normalize conversations and remove bias, conscious or unconscious
  • Own your vulnerabilities: they can become a sure way to accelerate your path to leadership once you realize that you’ll need to surround yourself with a support system to compensate for your gaps and to help you achieve your goals

-Tifenn Dano Kwan, Chief Marketing Officer

On why DE&I is so important

It’s important for companies to create a culture where everyone, no matter who they are, feels that they can belong and thrive. Diversity in the workplace ensures diverse ideas, which in turn, help us achieve our ambitious goals. It’s also really important for women to see other women in leadership roles.

Why does this matter? Because, when we celebrate our differences and similarities and when we recognize the achievements of women, we show others what is possible. I am proud to be part  of a diverse leadership team, with three other women executives by my side.  And I hope I am inspiring other women. At the end of the day women need to believe that the sky is the limit and gender is not.

-Michelle Rosen, General Counsel


Without a doubt there is a lot to celebrate this year. Progress is being made. There is still more work to be done, but on this amazing day, we salute all the women out there. Collibra is committed to gender equity and we are incredibly proud of all of the women we work with and serve. Happy International Women’s Day.

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