Illana Raia

Recently named one of the first 250 entrepreneurs on the Forbes Next 1000 List, Illana Raia is the founder and CEO of Être – a mentorship platform for girls. Believing that mentors matter as early as middle school, Illana brings girls directly into companies they select to meet female leaders face to face.

Illana is a member of the International Space Station U.S. National Lab Education Subcommittee and serves on the National Girls’ Collaborative Champions Board. Illana has authored 60+ articles for HuffPost, Ms. Magazine, and Thrive Global, and her award-winning book Être: Girls, Who Do You Want To Be? was released on Day of the Girl 2019. Her next book, The Epic Mentor Guide, is scheduled to arrive on International Women’s Day 2022.

Follow Illana here:

LinkedIn:https://www.linkedin.com/in/illana-raia-72958833/

Website: https://www.etregirls.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Etregirls/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/etregirls/

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Illana Raia Shares Her Inspiring Story of Determination and Shattering Glass Ceilings

Pamela Bardhi
Hello, everyone, and welcome to another episode of underdog. Today I have an awesome guest here with me. Ilana Raia, how are you?

Illana Raia
I’m good, thanks. Thanks for having me.

Pamela Bardhi
Thank you so much for being here. It is truly an honor to have you. I love your mission. Everything you stand for, you’re just a rock star in all realms. So I’m pumped to hear the backstory today, so pumped to have you here. Thank you so much and of course, I always start out with the most complicated question known to man, which is what inspired you on your journey to where you are today?

Illana Raia
No, it’s actually a great question. And especially because this was a really Unexpected Journey. For me, I was a lawyer for a long time. I did mergers and acquisitions in New York City, which I totally loved. If someone had said I would take this massive left turn, I never would have believed it. What inspired It was my daughter and she was in middle school while I was working. And I realized at this really crucial impressionable age where role models mean so much. She had no idea what I was doing all day, a lot of that was my fault. I wasn’t explaining it to her, I wasn’t letting her into the office world and showing her what I did.

And even more than that, she didn’t know what a lot of my friends did. These were really accomplished women with fascinating jobs. She just didn’t see them as working women, all she saw was my friend from book club or mom or an aunt. That just stayed with me while I was practicing law. At the time, I just made an effort to take her to lunch with those women on a regular basis. And make sure that she could see what it was like to be a physician. Or to work on wall street or something like that. But later when I retired, it just kept nudging me and that’s what made me decide to start Petra and to launch it as a website first.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s amazing. Now, can you tell us about the mission of transmission and everything?

Illana Raia
Thank you, Ash remains in French. And I love the idea right from the outset of asking girls who they want it to be and I liked middle school. This is really where we started, not just because that was when I noticed that my daughter. Didn’t have enough amazing female role models in her life. But it seemed to be the time where girls were, their confidence was faltering a little bit. They were stepping out of the harder math or science classes. Maybe they weren’t trying out for that next-level sports team. And the more I read about it, the more I really did see a confidence gap that the research was born out.

So I thought, I would just launch a website with inspirational quotes and free resources to help girls stick with what they loved. If you love your sport and your school doesn’t have it. Here are a bunch of quotes from Olympic athletes and women who have excelled in that area. If you love science and there isn’t a science fair at your school, here are a bunch of regional and national science fairs you can enter. And I thought I would start like that and then it just grew really quickly. Then the more girls followed it and got involved. I created a board and started having them really run the show and decide what was going to go up on a page and who we would interview.

And from there, it morphed into meeting the women. The girls weren’t satisfied with just the quotes or the resources. They wanted to meet the women who were speaking to them. That’s how we started going into companies and the heart of what extra does is we go into companies and meet female leaders face to face. And the companies are organizations that the girls pick, they vote. So think companies like Spotify and Google and the stock exchange and billboard where they use the product. Or they understand what the company does and we only beat women and it’s been fascinating.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s amazing how many years now as a driven.

Illana Raia
We just turned five so we’re in kindergarten now we’re five.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s amazing. Wow. And I just love this story and how it ties to your daughter and how that came close, but I want to reel it back a little bit. You know what is so not a little bit a lot. Because I love your story and I want to dig into different pieces of it. So what did you want to be when you grew up

Illana Raia
A lawyer, it was just a straightforward, really boring career path. I knew I wanted to be a lawyer. My grandmother was a lawyer. She graduated from Brooklyn law in 1936. So it really went when women were not lawyers. And then in my third year of law school, my mother went to law school. So she became a lawyer at the age of 50.

But I just had always loved it, I felt like law really fit with my skill set. I liked history and English, I was a government major in college. There was never a point really growing up where I didn’t think I was going to go to law school. And then I loved it as much as I thought I would. I went to the University of Chicago, I completely loved it. Then I went straight into a big firm from there, it was just not even a dotted line. It was straight on.

Pamela Bardhi
Wow, that’s so funny. You know, it’s hilarious. There’s like so many attorneys and lawyers that, you know, well. They’re one of the same that I speak to a lot of them. When I ask them what they wanted to be when they grew up, they said a lawyer, like it’s so funny. It’s like, embedded from like, on that’s so awesome. And what I really love is like the two women in your life who are also lawyers, thank God, that’s so cool and like your grandmother in 1936.

Illana Raia
Yeah, there are pictures and she’s with, you know. This class and it’s just all men and then my grandmother. And I have this notebook with clippings from her court cases and it’s so amazing. Because to look back at the newspaper articles the way they would frame what she was doing, you know, they would say. The tiny blonde lawyer dressed in pink with a matching hat. You know, it was all about fashion and so much less about what she was saying. And it was the opportunity to go with her and watch her in person that really impacted me.

I think that’s what I see echoed when I bring girls into companies face to face. It’s one thing to do a role model interview on paper. Or even over zoom, which we have pivoted to during COVID. But that immediacy of standing a girl in someone’s boardroom. And having that woman say I felt just like you did when I was your age. I hated raising my hand in history and then I got over it. And now this is my company, come meet my team and see what I do. Face to face I just don’t think there’s a replacement for it.

Pamela Bardhi
Wow, I completely agree with you. I just like love. Does he ever tell you what it was like, being in the room with all these guys and like. Because I can’t, I can’t wrap my head around what it was like to be an attorney at that point.

Illana Raia
You know, I think for her, the experience echoed a lot of other experiences. She was having, just being a woman at that time in general. You know, she was the only one of the only women in her class, she was usually the only woman in the courtroom. She went to school at night because her grandparents had a grocery store. And so she would work in the store during the day. Then go to class to study with the open stove in the middle of the store at night. I mean, the stories are like stories that everyone’s family has when someone was the first to do something. And so the inspiration there, I never felt like there was an excuse for not throwing my shoulder into it and working really hard. Because look how she did it.

Pamela Bardhi
I love it. Oh, my goodness. So you come from a beautiful line of very strong women, which is the most remarkable thing. That’s a thing, so they’re basically serving as your role models growing up and getting into your field.

Illana Raia
Yeah, and the idea of mentorship really threaded through. I mean, I had great mentors in college, I had mentors in law school. When I got to my firm, my very first mentor was there. And I was assigned to her for the first two years was a woman and I’m close with her to this day.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s amazing. Women help women, that’s the truth, build relationships. No offense to guys.

Illana Raia
And I’m not saying that I didn’t have male mentors as well. I mean, my father and professors and it’s so instrumental. Male mentors and allies and sponsors and throughout your professional life. It’s essential, but just for me personally, it happened to be that the core group of mentors happened to be women.

Pamela Bardhi
Absolutely. Well, that’s why I always say I’m like, sorry, guys, but like women are just so strong at creating relationships. Like, they’re great too, like, we love them. They’re our allies and all that, but like women just they just connect and they click so well. It’s really amazing, how they help each other. You know, which is so cool. Oh my gosh, wow. So basically you took off and you knew you went straight after college. You just went straight to law school.

Illana Raia
I did, I went straight through. Yeah, I mean, I graduated law school at 23. So it was really on.

Pamela Bardhi
Wow. And so with that being said, because you had mentioned you were going to a big firm you went to a big firm after you graduate. So as I have friends in law school, so I’m asking on their behalf, you know. How do you get into those bigger firms? And like, how do you build those relationships and this could go for anybody who was in any. Any college program, you know, undergrad or graduate, like any tips that you have that you learn through your process?

Illana Raia
You know, I think in a way, it’s easier now when I did this and I’ll date myself, but when I did this. There was, you know, there was no email, there was no LinkedIn. It was not like every interview was in person, every correspondence was written. I think right now, with something like LinkedIn, you know. Let’s say you’re a college junior or college senior and you’re looking to the next steps. Looking at people who work in places you might someday want to work. Or people who write about or lecture about topics that interest you.

It’s such an easy thing to reach out and say, I’m not asking for anything, I just want you to know that this resonated with me. I watched your speech on this and it moved me to stay in touch. Or I found this other article and I thought you would like it. And you start these relationships by emailing someone cold and saying hello. Would you mentor me is not really the way to do it? But adding value, being respectful of that person’s time, and reaching out with a common interest. It’s easier now I think than it ever was.

And when that’s done well, when someone reaches out to me and says. I’d love to ask you three questions by email about law school. Or about mentorship in general or I will just not say no. Because when it’s done with a genuine interest in learning something absolutely, you want to do that. And I feel like most people I know, feel the same way. So reaching out through social media, it could be a DM on Instagram, it can be on LinkedIn. These are easy and quick ways and you already know that there’s a common interest.

Pamela Bardhi
Oh, I totally agree. And also to, like you said about adding value that is super. Super key and building those relationships and kind of just like putting yourself out there. I tell people all the time, all you have to do is ask. There’s so many people out there willing to help you like it’s okay to ask questions, I was a mess, I remember being in like a young entrepreneur. Just like going and speaking to so many people, I’m thinking, you know, what. What was your experience with this? And what was your experience and all of that and maintaining those relationships? So I love that

Illana Raia
I asked specifically about firms. And it’s even easier there because firms are putting out so much information. So if there is a firm that you’re really interested in or a practice area. You want to know more about reading their white papers, watch their videos. There was so much thoughtful content being put out by these leading firms to absorb it and respond to it, it’s an easy way to do it.

Pamela Bardhi
I love that. And now transitioning from like your big firm career, you know, where you had. You had golden handcuffs to work in a corporation, but the hardest thing is pushing away from that. And going solo, as you did know. Walk me through that process was your aha moment to be like, see ya, kind of like, because that’s not easy to do.

Illana Raia
It’s not easy to do and I did it twice. When I first started practicing, I worked for the first five and a half years. Or so in mergers and acquisitions and I was constantly on the go. I was constantly on a plane, I was moving around and I loved it. But it was very intense and then I had two kids within 20 months of each other. And so I left for six years when my kids were small. I left the farm for six years, my husband traveled constantly and I just felt like many women. Do that we needed boots on the ground in one respect or the other.

And I was incredibly fortunate I was able to do it. So I stayed home for six years and when my youngest went to school. I went back to the same firm for another 10 years. So then I was back and it was great and I just traveled less and had a slightly different role. But I mean, I loved the firm, I love the people, I’m still in contact with them. And so when I left the next time in 2014, I felt a little more ready. I had another decade there, I love the work, the department that we had built. Was really humming along and on its own and I felt in a way that I was just ready for something else.

And it wasn’t as hard a decision as I thought it was going to be in part. Because the firm was amazing. But I really felt like there was something else and a lot of it had to do with the mentorship. I left at 14, I didn’t launch until 16. But during that time in between, I was thinking so much about mentorship and how fortunate I was, and how to pay it forward. And putting the website up was just a natural next step and one of the first groups to interview me about it was my law firm. So they fully got the idea of female mentorship from day one.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s wonderful, so in that period, you know what? So it was more so like planning and getting everything kind of rolling.

Illana Raia
Yeah, I really wanted to think about, you know, the entity structure itself. Is this nonprofit, Is it for profit, Is it only a website? Or is it going to have other components to it three years after we launched? We put our first book out, we’ve another book coming out next year. So there were all these little extra things that were happening. But mainly what I wanted to do was listen to the women I respected. And I almost went on like little listening tours, a silly phrase, but I really did. I just sat down with women and said, if someone wanted to ask you a career question, would you answer them?

If someone wanted face-to-face to meet with you for 10 minutes? Do you have that capability? And I expected to get some yeses, some noses, and a little feedback. About why this was not going to be the most effective way to provide mentorship and across the board. Women were telling me what to do. What do you need? I remember what it’s like to be that age. Absolutely. I’m in. And it took shape faster than I thought it would. Some really influential women liked it early on and their praise and their support were instrumental. But I was just overwhelmed by how many women immediately were like, I would love this.

Pamela Bardhi
Can I do it? Oh, that’s incredible. That’s, you see what I mean? Ladies in their relationships, they just, that’s so exciting. And now like, because you were a first-time entrepreneur in this. So what was the first like for three years? Like? Because I know there’s a lot of entrepreneurs listening as well and so what were some of your challenges? And how did you work through them?

Illana Raia
It’s a great question. The challenge for me was to really focus, I was getting a lot of advice from a lot of people to focus on the girls. And my former board was all middle and high school-aged girls. Oh, got 10 girls on the board, you laugh, there are 100 of them now. Every month I send out an email with questions and some of its updates. We’re doing this if you want to sign up to talk to someone from Snapchat. If you want to meet someone from billboard, you know, the usual events. And then usually there are five questions at the bottom and those really guide what we do. If we had a choice to interview this CEO or this athlete, who would you pick?

And if 80% of the girls pick the athlete, that’s who we’re interviewing. You know, do you think that we should do a second book? Do you think that we should join this philanthropic campaign on Instagram, things like that? They guide what we do and stay very, very close to what they want. And the topics that mean something to them. I think that was initially the biggest challenge and it had the biggest reward. So that was really important and we just grew very organically. I didn’t know we would have after-school clubs until one of my girls said. Why can’t I bring this to my school? So they had great ideas and it was just my job to say yes, let’s figure out how to do it.

Pamela Bardhi
And this is middle to high school-aged girls.

Illana Raia
Middle to high school was really where I started, I aimed it at middle school. And then as they were growing into high school. The surprise for me was that when my first class of girls graduated high school, they didn’t want to let it go. No longer were they in high school where their club was. But now they said they needed different things. Now I want to reach back to that woman. We met at Morgan Stanley and asked her to look at my resume.

And I don’t know anything about making a LinkedIn page and what’s a virtual interview? How do I possibly do that? And so we started extra campus last year. So it’s still very new. But the idea is that they can circle back to those women that they met and say. Hi, I met you at Spotify and you were really great and I’m interested in internships in the music industry. What do you suggest and it’s sort of a second bite at the apple. The advice is just as valuable as it was the first time. So that’s been a really lovely reconnect and not one that I anticipated at all.

Pamela Bardhi
Well, yeah. What I love is that you’ve stayed open and you’ve stayed fluid. Because some people will be like, what do middle-aged girls, you know, middle school-aged girls know what. Everything. They know everything like, Oh, look at what they created, which is so cool. I mean, in those relationships, I tell everyone, your network is your net worth. We know not what you know. And that’s just how the game goes no matter what. So I’m like, brand yourself and focus on those relationships. You will get an entrepreneur whether in the corporate world like it’s a whole nother level. And I love what you did with them.

Illana Raia
Well, you said that exactly right. And when you start as young as middle school. They just get more practiced at asking the questions at being unabashed to raise their hands in a boardroom and say. I don’t understand this or how does this work in your day? Or what classes Did you take to become skilled enough to do this? And if they can ask questions in a boardroom in middle school. They will ask questions in a boardroom later and so some of that early practice. Just early comfort is just sort of icing on the cake.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s incredible. Absolutely. You raise strong women, you start as young as possible, right? So that when they’re used to it, it just becomes a habit they learn in middle school to continue with through high school. And then continue it for the rest of their lives. I love where you’re starting with that, that is so amazing. That’s so amazing.

Illana Raia
That’s a really good question. I mean, they’re not asking for fluff. They’re asking if I had someone in one of our last, we’ve been doing these pop-up mentorships during COVID. So you know, instead of going to a company, obviously, we’ll do a zoom. Which lets us actually bring girls from a bunch of different states. Or even different countries now, which we weren’t doing before. And we can have more girls in the room. But someone asked something about his ambition more important than passion, but really substantive, thoughtful questions.

Pamela Bardhi
Wow, as a first-time entrepreneur to like what have been some of your biggest challenges. I know. COVID is probably one of them,

Illana Raia
It was one of them, It made some things easier in the sense that I wasn’t renting buses. And signing permission slips to move girls around the city, was a zoom link. They could just jump on and we could invite entire Girl Scout troops and things like that. So in that respect, COVID broadened our audience and made our network a little more global, which was interesting. We obviously lost that face-to-face, which you know, is so important to me. I think other challenges were keeping the same voice to the girls and keeping the same mission.

Even though our age group was expanding, so much, you know. Not being just Middle School and speaking to those girls and any moms or aunts looking over their shoulder. But speaking to high school girls who had very different college questions now, all of a sudden. If their sports team, their spring musical, their yearbook. All of it went out the window because it was a remote school. What activities could differentiate them? How could we help them present to colleges? Those were big challenges. And luckily, we had a network of women.

So we could say, what about a virtual internship? What about a pandemic project that you could actually show to someone in a STEM field, what about something in aerospace? You know, something unusual that was close to their interests? But those were questions that we hadn’t anticipated? No one had, those were all challenges. I don’t think they were unlike any youth-focused organization experiencing COVID. And I was really impressed by how the girls responded. The project they created and the way they wanted to go into their communities and help. So what was the challenge to me? They were used as a springboard.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s incredible. Well, I love how fluid and open to change and adaptable that you like, the adaptability is amazing. Which has been, I think the reason why you’re so super successful is that you’re so open and receptive. And just like willing to accept their thoughts and their process and respect their opinions. Then you know, to be able to create this and be able to kind of juggle whatever comes your way. Because I find this I mean, I struggled with this too, as an entrepreneur when I first started.

I remember I had my first restaurant. And it’s like, it was so hard to break that barrier of like. What do I want? Versus like, what does your customer want? Like, what does your avatar want? And I was like, so hard-headed. I’m like, No, well, this is so good and it’s like you’re stuck in your ways. But like, I think that for you, it’s so incredible to watch, you sort of taking it all in and morph that. I think that’s a huge recipe for your success.

Illana Raia
I hope I do know that I have to be better at it, you know. Things, again, not uncommon, delegating and there are times where I want to do everything that the girls suggest. And we really do have to pull back and say we’re going to do one. So let’s vote on it, let’s talk about it. But we can’t do everything. You wish you had 50 people around you all the time helping to make it happen. But right now we pick and choose and just listen to the girls and that’s really it.

One of Illana’s Favorite Moment

Pamela Bardhi
That’s amazing. And now what’s been sort of like your favorite moment?

Illana Raia
Oh, I love your company. That is a great question. One of my favorite moments has to be our first company visit. Spotify hosted us for the very first visit. And the first thing they did, they brought the girls in and they threw them up on the stage. So they’re on this huge Spotify stage. And the look on their faces that they’re looking at, they’re meeting these women, they’re listening to the executives, but they’re on the stage. They’re looking around where every music icon that they know has stood.

And the fact that you could see on their faces that they were in the moment in the room and every hand was up asking questions. I really thought at that moment, this is what we’re supposed to do. This is what we’re supposed to be. The website is fine, the on-paper interviews are fine. This is the heart of it. That was a big aha moment and I think when the first book came out. And the girls I had quotes from 40 women and 50 girls, and when the girls saw that quote.

About their sport or ambition or whatever they were speaking about. The book was right next to the quote of a CEO or the quote of a founder that they knew. And they were all just juxtaposed next to each other, watching the girls’ faces at the book launch. When they were signing books like complete pros, by the way. It was another moment where I just wanted to take a step back and just watch them and say like. They are rising to the occasion with such grace and pride. And I love that moment.

Pamela Bardhi
Wow. Yes. So tell us about your books. I know that’s already launched and you’re working on a new one.

Illana Raia
The first book was called Extra girls, who do you want to be and it was a compilation of articles. That I had written for Huffington Post and thrive global and elevate. We organize the book in the same categories that the website presents. Why is where the S is a $1 sign is all about financial confidence? And we had quotes from women in finance, we had quotes from girls about money management. Or earning money and then all of the articles and there were 10 topics. It was just a blast to do and the girls were amazing. So that was our first book and that came out on Dave, the girl in 2019. And our next book.

Which is going to be called the epic mentor Guide, which is exciting. And I haven’t said the title out loud on too many things yet, so that’s fun and is aimed at an older group. So that is why the first book was aimed more at middle school. This is for college and high school and that pre-professional crowd. We are collecting questions from girls from everywhere that are specific to work, how do I get noticed at Netflix? How do I land an internship at SpaceX, companies that they love? And then we’re having women at those companies answer the questions.

So it’s a really dynamic, cool q&a, but very work specific with real questions that girls want the answers to. Before they start work. You know, how do I read a cover letter? Is a cover letter even necessary anymore? When do I send the thank you note after the interview questions like that? What makes a great intern? And so we’re having these women, answer the questions that will come out on International Women’s Day 22.

Pamela Bardhi
Oh, my God, so pumped that said to me, funnel credit was so incredible. And now like, what would be some of your biggest tips based on what the girls have learned so far?

Illana Raia
That’s a great question, too. I think the wisdom that they’re getting from a lot of the women, a lot of it revolves around risk. Take the risk when they say be brave, they really mean it. Jump in follow, you might not know yet that you have a passion, but you know that you have an interest. You know, the classes you look forward to. The activities, that you just can’t wait till the end of the day to go and do lean into that. And that will take you to that next step.

So there’s a lot of bravery and this is how I followed my passion. What I love about the wisdom that we’re getting from women is that it’s not sort of empty, like. Follow your dreams and everything’s gonna be fine. It’s very granular, It’s very action-packed, this is how I did it. These are the classes I took. This is the question I asked in that interview that got someone’s attention. And the specificity I think is really helpful. Yeah, I like that when I get answers and I think the girls do too. Incredible.

Pamela Bardhi
And now I have a very, very complicated question. How is my fav? And this can be business or personal. But what would your older self tell your younger self, based on what you know, now?

Illana Raia
Oh, so good. Don’t cut your own bangs, leaps to mind. Just stop doing it. On a serious note, I think I was such a straight line to law and I never doubted it. But I also in doing that I didn’t actually contemplate that other things would bring me joy. And I never could have imagined doing this and feeling like I was having an impact. Even if it was small, that would be so gratifying.

So I think even if you have I would tell myself, even if you had this career path laid out. And even if it looks like just the straightest line in the world. See the joy possibilities and other places, don’t ignore them. Allow that to come in and when the time’s right, you’re gonna do it. But I am the most unlikely person to start a venture like this. And it’s brought me so much joy. It’s ridiculous.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s so amazing. I know. And I love it. That’s what I’m saying. Like, you’re so fluid and so receptive and just like so open to so much and you’re just like adapting and you’re going and it really speaks to your growth.

Illana Raia
Everyone is right now. Yeah, I feel like everyone you have to be as well, right? Pivot is sort of the name of the game right now.

Pamela Bardhi
It really, really is, but you’re handling it so well. So kudos to you on that. And the impact that you’re making in the process is just unreal. Because these girls will remember that forever and they’re gonna pass it on to generations. So you’re starting that from here, which is huge, so major kudos to you. And with that being said what’s going on now? What’s new in your world,

Illana Raia
We became a TED-Ed club and that was a lot of fun. So you know, thinking of things to do during COVID. If school clubs were off the table Well, what could we offer and so we got licensed to be a Ted club. So I have 18 girls finishing their TED Talks now. And they’re going to film the first week of June and that’s been tremendous. Their topics are great. They’re really substantive. We’ve got college girls acting as leaders to help them practice and refine the talks, so that’ll be a lot of fun. There’ll be a new page on our website for Ted-Ed.

And hopefully, we’ll be able to do that every year. This is our first time but hopefully, I’d love to do that every season. So that’s new and the book and I think probably just the transition moving back into live events, In the fall, you know. The pop-up mentor events have been great. I mean, and we’ll keep that. Again, this is something that came up organically. But will absolutely keep these virtual mentor pop-ups, because it allows us to interact. We had an author in the UK talk to us about writing her book and it was phenomenal. So new options there. But I think coming back to the live events, I’m excited to do that.

Pamela Bardhi
That’s incredible. Oh, heck yes, I’m pumped for you. I mean, I just can’t. I’m so like, watching the world come back slowly, is the greatest thing ever. And I just can’t wait till we’re fully back to normal. But we’re almost there and like the live events and everything because you can’t beat that. I mean, don’t get me wrong. Virtuals are awesome. But in person, it is even more awesome.

Illana Raia
It is and I think everyone will really crave it once schools are back and parents are comfortable. And companies are comfortable and everyone has a sense of what’s safe to do. We’ll figure out how to do them again.

Pamela Bardhi
Absolutely. Oh, man. And now where Can everybody find you and the amazing extra community.

Illana Raia
So it is etre girls, so our website is etregirls.com. We’re etre girls everywhere on social media. So, e t r e girls and Instagram really have the most recent updates. When we’re doing events, we have a Monday edit, so every Monday we talk about what’s coming during the week. We have Instagram takeovers, where we highlight different girls doing amazing things. We’re always looking for more girls to highlight.

And on the website, there are places you can find to start a club at your school to join the board. I always want more voices on the board and there are serious board positions. You know, there are club founders and interns and digital content strategists and all girls. And if you’re a woman looking to mentor or you want to be involved on the website. There’s a way to mentor and we need you. We love wisdom, we love the experience voices, so please contact us.

Pamela Bardhi
I love it. Thank you so much Ilana for being here today and just for your mission. And just continuing to just spread awesomeness into the world and empower. These lovely ladies go out and basically dominate the world who run the world girls, right?

Illana Raia
Thank you so much for getting what we do and for asking me. It’s exactly stuff like this other woman who really gets it and spreading the word like this is exactly how we’ve grown. So thank you.

Tune in to the episode to hear the rest of my incredible interview with the amazing Illana Raia.