CEO | Women4Change Indiana
Rima Shahid provides strategic leadership and ensures that goals are being met at Women4Change, a public-policy advocacy organization born out of concerns over the breakdown in civility during the 2016 presidential race. The organization advocates for equity in the workplace, in health care and in political, civic and cultural leadership. Shahid oversees program development, fundraising, team leadership and board engagement, among other roles. “Working in the field of women’s rights and equality can sometimes feel like an uphill battle,” she said, “but there are moments when I see real progress being made, and that always brings a smile to my face. Whether it’s a new policy that we’ve helped to pass, a new partnership that we’ve established or a new program that we’re launching, it’s always a thrill to see our hard work paying off.”
Getting here: She said her experience as executive director of the Muslim Alliance of Indiana and as trade development officer at the Pakistan Embassy in Bahrain honed her skills in advocacy, program development, fundraising and team management.
First job: She worked at a Blockbuster. “I am proud to share that I was named employee of the month, which is no easy feat considering how angry folks would get when they would receive late fees for dropping their DVDs in late.”
Influential moment: “Seeing so many Hoosiers mobilized this summer in response to the Dobbs [abortion] decision was one of the most influential moments in my career,” she said. “The outpouring of support and advocacy from community members showed me the power of collective action and inspired me to continue fighting for the rights of all people.”
Proud moment: the six bills Women4Change has helped pass in the past six years
Mentor: Indianapolis business and community leader Tamara Zahn, who died in 2020
Givebacks: Shahid serves on the board of the Central Indiana Land Trust and ReCenter Indiana, a voter education and political advocacy organization.
Advice: People can have a direct impact on shaping the policies that affect their lives by participating in the political process.•
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