First Lady Michelle Obama graced the SXSW Keynote stage March 15th with a star-studded panel including rapper Missy Elliott, songwriter Diane Warren and actress Sophia Bush. Moderated by Queen Latifah, the powerhouse of women discussed the importance of finding one's passion, empowering the movement of girls' education globally, and the need of diversity in power position roles.
Here are some gems discussed by the powerhouse panel:
"When you don't include women in the dialogue you're lacking." - Missy Elliott
"What can I do as a male to empower and support the women in my life?" One attendee asked. Michelle recommended that there's so many ways to support the women in your life including following the movement #62milliongirls and taking action with your community to support the movement. FLOTUS also mentioned that if you're a male with a voice at the table, "Look around you. Is there diversity?" When you don't include women in the dialogue, you're lacking. There's so much diverse opinions and voices that need to be part of the discussion. You don't need to be president to make a different in your community, there's action you can take today.
"We can do so much more together." - Queen Latifah
"There's so much that men can do, that women can't do. There's so much women can do that men can't do, but we can do so much more together." Queen Latifah said, mentioning that her business partner is a male who listened to her opinions and encouraged her to be real.
The ladies also had a discussing talking about their musical influences. From Missy Elliott citing Queen Latifah and Salt N' Pepa as influential females who inspired her to create music to Michelle Obama highlighting Stevie Wonder as her all-time favorite artist, both of them discussed how music that shares messages of love and real-life experiences are timeless.
To support the initiative of female empowerment, Obama organized the creation of a new single "This Is For My Girls", written by Diane Warren and featuring Missy Elliott, Kelly Clarkson, Zendaya, 100% of the proceeds will go towards Let Girls Learn. Support the movement by buying the track on iTunes here. Missed the panel? Join the discussion by watching the SXSW Livestream here.