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The Broadsheet: November 21st

Good morning, Broadsheet readers! Angela Merkel will run for a fourth term, Carrie Underwood jumps on the athleisure bandwagon, and we are still waiting for Trump to name a female cabinet member. Have a productive Monday.


• More men. Last week, Fortune took a look at the women who have a good shot at landing a spot in Donald Trump’s cabinet. But so far, the president-elect has not chosen a single woman for a senior post in his administration. Indeed, the four cabinet members he’s named thus far are all white men—and the names being circulated as possible picks for early this week, including former governor and GOP nominee Mitt Romney and ex-Marine Crops general James Mattis, are more of the same.

Of course, that’s not to say that white men cannot fight for the rights and interests of women and minorities. Yet there’s little evidence that any of the men Trump’s tapped will do so. We’ve already discussed the record of newly-named White House senior strategist Steve Bannon. Now, let’s consider that of Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, the president-elect’s choice for attorney general. According to this useful rundown by Quartz, Sessions—who has been dogged by repeated charges of racism throughout his career—has consistently voted against abortion rights, opposed the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act in 2013, and voted against provisions to boost women-owned businesses.

While I would like to believe that Trump will bring someone into the White House to advocate for women—who account for half of the citizens of the country he is preparing to run—it is getting more and more difficult to hold onto that hope.


• More Merkel? German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she will seek a fourth term in next year’s election. While Merkel is currently facing one of the most challenging times she has confronted in her 11-year tenure, one poll indicates that 55% of Germans want her to serve another term.  Fortune

• Fit for a star. Launching an athleisure brand appears to be the preferred side hustle of female celebs—Kate Hudson, Hilary Swank, Beyoncé, and Jessica Simpson all have them. Also in on the trend: Country singer Carrie Underwood, whose line, Calia, will celebrate a two-year anniversary early next year.  Fortune

• Microsoft’s money where its mouth is. After losing female employees for the second year in a row (from 26.8% of the workforce to 25.8%), Microsoft is rolling out a new program that will tie senior leaders’ compensation to diversity gains in their respective organizations.  Fortune

• It takes two. While the U.S. has still never had a single female president, it’s interesting to note that some social psychologists argue that it’s a second female leader, not a first, that’s a true measure of whether a country is truly progressive when it comes to women and leadership. In fact, only a third of nations that have been run by a woman have gone on to put another woman in charge. Bloomberg

• Busting on Bannon. In the most recent episode of Broad Strokes, Val and I discuss the appointment of Steve Bannon, the women of Donald Trump’s inner circle, and the reasons companies tend to keep their parental leave cards so close to their chests.  Fortune


Each week, Fortune asks our Insider Network — an online community of prominent people in business and beyond — for career and leadership advice. Here’s some of the best of what we heard last week.

Lonely at the top. Lizzie Widhelm, SVP of ad products and strategy at Pandora, writes about why she didn’t really feel her workplace gender gap until she became an senior exec.  Fortune

• Started from the bottom. How do you make the most of an internship? Kayla Kirkeby, vice president of marketing at Dizzion, has three tips.  Fortune

• Skip the straight line. Never underestimate the power of a winding career path, says Judith Monroe, president and CEO of the CDC Foundation. Her advice for women en route to the C-suite: “Explore your passion—and look for ways to apply your unique talents broadly.” Fortune


• A diplomatic disgrace. Photos of Ivanka Trump sitting in on her father’s meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe prompted outrage over potential conflicts of interest in Donald Trump’s administration: Ivanka Trump has no government security clearance and is an executive at the Trump Organization. Fortune

• Up, up, and away? In another sign that the Fed will move on interest rates next month, Kansas City Fed president Esther George said that the economy would benefit from a rate boost sooner rather than later. Fortune

• The entrepreneur whisperer. Jodi Goldstein, managing director of the Harvard Innovation Labs, talks about growing up in Vermont, working with entrepreneurs and hiring for humility. New York Times

• Style standoff. Designer Sophie Theallet, who has dressed First Lady Michelle Obama in the past, announced that she and her brand will boycott Donald Trump and his wife, Melania, refusing to lend her any of her designs.  People

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Marine Le Pen takes huge lead over Nicolas Sarkozy in French first round presidential election poll  The Independent

Fleeing Iraqi women tell of harsh treatment in Mosul  WSJ

There’s a bisexual wage gap, too  Bloomberg

The Cowgirls of Color: the black women’s team bucking rodeo trends  The Guardian


I didn’t know if I would live to see another day, but I’m still here.
Lyrics from legendary soul singer Sharon Jones, who died Friday at age 60