Allow me to introduce myself since, I'm sure, you're wondering who is the person behind this movement.
👋🏾 My name is Watchen and I am the Senior Vice President of Marketing Partnerships for the WNBA team here in Chicago, the Chicago Sky. In my position I oversee all of our corporate partnerships and manage our community efforts through our foundation. When I say "I" I really mean my team, because let's be honest, they do a lot of the heavy lift. I have a B.A. in Communications from DePauw University and am in the process of getting my MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Some of the companies I have worked for include Comedy Central, Yahoo!, EBONY & Jet.
I am also the Founder of I Choose the Ladder. My friends always joke that I move through Corporate America as if I'm an entitled White man, I don't, but what they mean is that I know the value that I bring, I ask for what I want, and I don't accept less than I deserve. Periodttt!!!
I strongly believe that I am able to move the way I move in my career (I went from a director level position to an SVP in about 3 years at one company, and there was a year early in my career when I increased my salary by $65,000 in a single year) because I have had a highly influential tribe of people (mentors, sponsors, colleagues, etc.) who have been very generous with sharing their knowledge with me.
I ignorantly thought that everyone had that. What I found though is NOT everyone has that, and particularly for Black women it's so much harder to find that.
So, I started I Choose the Ladder as a way to pay it forward. Consider this my gift to a tribe that I am so proud to be a part of. I LOVE being a Black woman and I am committed to seeing more Black woman get as much from Corporate America as they give.
Thank you for choosing to climb up the corporate ladder with me.
There's enough for all of us at the top!