Throughout her impressive career, Barbara Mikulski, the senior U.S. senator from Maryland, has been one of the fiercest advocates in Congress for the advancement of women and girls. So much so that, over her 30 years representing Maryland in the Senate, Mikulski has assumed the unofficial title of “Dean of Women,” acting as a mentor to newly elected female senators, Democrats and Republicans alike. On May 12, Mikulski will give special remarks at NDI’s annual Madeleine K. Albright Luncheon, which honors a grassroots women’s organization promoting the participation of women and girls in politics.
Mikulski’s commitment to women in politics mirrors the commitment of this year’s winner of the Madeleine K. Albright Grant, the Worker Women Social Organization (WWSO) of Kandahar, Afghanistan. WWSO was established in 2010 by a group of young women activists to support vocational training, leadership development and civic education to empower women. WWSO seeks to address critical social needs and improve access to basic services in Kandahar, while empowering women and youth to become leaders in their communities.
Mikulski announced last month that she would not seek a sixth term in the Senate. Her luncheon remarks will reflect upon her 45 years in public service and the important work of getting women involved in politics. As the first Democratic woman to be elected to the Senate in her own right and the longest serving woman in congressional history, she has served as a guidepost for the many women leaders in the U.S. and all those who work for the equal participation of women in politics around the world.