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The Broadsheet: October 23rd

Good morning, Broadsheet readers! Hillary Clinton makes it through the Benghazi hearing unscathed, China corners the market on female billionaires, and Paul Ryan, who’s officially running for House speaker, takes a stand on work-life balance. Enjoy your weekend.




Hillary takes the hits. Hillary Clinton’s 11 hours of testimony about the 2012 Benghazi attacks provoked sharp questioning by the House committee—and even some shouting matches between lawmakers—but she got through relatively unscathed. No new notable facts appear to have come to light. And Clinton kept her cool, taking the opportunity to tell her version of what happened.  Washington Post


• Inside Hillary’s Blackberry. In more Clinton headlines, Politico takes a deep dive into the candidate’s trove of some 12,000 public emails, hoping to gain some insight into what her life is really like. Politico

• Made in China. Eight out of the top 10 women on a new list of the world’s richest female entrepreneurs are Chinese. Topping the ranking: Zhou Qunfei, founder of touch-screen manufacturing company Lens Technology, who is worth an estimated $7.8 billion.  Fortune

Pregnant perks. Domo, a Salt Lake City-based business software company, offers parental leave, a $1,000 baby bonus, and gift cards worth $2,000 to buy maternity clothes.  Fortune

Paid-leave pioneer. As the presidential candidates debate federally-mandated paid family leave, this Bloomberg story argues that they should look to California, which enacted America’s first such law in 2004. Since then, the state’s employment growth outpaced the U.S. average. Bloomberg

• A woman with drive. Lesa France Kennedy, CEO of the International Speedway Corp. and vice chairwoman of NASCAR, talks about the unique challenges of running a family businesses and the importance of first impressions.  New York Times

Password protectors. Over the past five years, two thirds of the corporate board spots given to cybersecurity experts went to women. This story looks at why so many women have risen to prominence in the now-hot field. Bloomberg


You’re not alone, Paul Ryan. Work-life balance is a dad issue, too.

The personal is political. That statement may be a feminist cliche at this point, but when Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) said on Tuesday that he “cannot and will not give up [his] family time,” to become Speaker of the House, we were reminded just how true it remains.

Ryan’s very public focus on his personal life got almost as much attention as the actual question of whether he will become speaker. Some, including Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and Huffington Post editor Arianna Huffington, praised Ryan’s stance. Others called him a hypocrite, noting that he’s voted against paid family leave and proposed cutting funding for child-care subsidies for low-income families.

Of course, Ryan’s not the first high-profile man to shock the American public (or at least the American media) by prioritizing family over career. Take Max Shireson, who stepped down as CEO of database company MongoDB last summer in order to find “balance” and be with his family. Then there’s former Google CFO Patrick Pichette, who famously decided to leave the company to spend more time with his wife after an epiphany atop Mt. Kilimanjaro. As with Ryan, both men’s announcements made headlines and raised eyebrows in a way they would not had they been made by women.

Whether or not we want to brand these men as poster children for work-life balance, the level of attention given to their pronouncements proves one thing: Our society still thinks of balance as a woman’s issue.

To read the rest of my story, click here.


• Holmes vs WSJ. The Theranos controversy continues. Elizabeth Holmes’ blood-testing company published a lengthy rebuttal to the Wall Street Journal articles that questioned the effectiveness of its tests. Among the points of contention: the importance of Theranos’ “Edison” technology and the number of tests that it previously performed using a finger-prick rather than a needle.  Fortune

Gamer girl. Meet Bonnie Ross, the woman in charge of Microsoft’s Halo 5, which is expected to be the year’s best-selling video game. Bloomberg

• How McGovern made it. Gail McGovern, CEO of the American Red Cross, runs down the five “watershed moments” that helped her reach the top job. Business Insider

• Blushing emoji? Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop is under fire for using the red frowny face emoji to describe Vladimir Putin, in an emoji-only interview with BuzzFeed. New York Times

Tune in to Fortune Live today and every Friday at 3 pm ET at Leigh Gallagher hosts Fortune Live, and today’s show features our Most Powerful Women team. I’ll be on the show talking Theranos, Uber and McDonald’s, while assistant managing editor Pattie Sellers and senior editor Jennifer Reingold will join Leigh for a conversation about the push to get more women on corporate boards.

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Women flip the script on Hollywood  Time

Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and his wife open a private school  Fortune

Hillary Clinton’s faces during the Benghazi hearing  The Guardian

Outrage over the “tampon tax” is overblown  Daily Beast


I remember a club owner telling me, 'Nobody wants to hear that from a girl,' you know, but even then I was just like, 'Yeah right, old man.'

Comedian Sarah Silverman on the sexism she faced early in her career