Member Salon: Gender Bias in Advertising

February 7, 2018

Gender bias in advertising is almost as prevalent as it was twelve years ago according to an analysis of more than 2,000 English language advertisements by the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media and J. Walter Thompson earlier this year. The study employed the Geena Davis - Inclusion Quotient (GD-IQ), a machine learning tool developed in partnership with Google and USA Viterbi School of Engineering, to provide real-time data analytics on gender and diversity, using video and audio recognition software.  The result of these measurements provides significant data on the unconscious bias that exists in the media.

The presentation will discuss how critical it is for the advertising industry to overcome unconscious bias and start portraying women authentically in ads.  There has never been a more important time than now to see these results and take action.  And, there is proof that brands that connect to customers authentically sell more products.

With that said, nothing will change until we all apply a gender filter to everything we do so that the unconscious becomes conscious.  Join the “Gender Bias in Advertising” event and learn from Mary Ellen Holden, Advisor/New York Council Lead for the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media as she shares insights and actions that can help you to make a difference.  

Registration is limited to the first 25 members.   

Date: Wednesday, February 7, 2018
Location: NYWICI Headquarters, 355 Lexington Avenue, 15th Floor (b/w 40th and 41st)
Time: 8:15 -  8:30 am: Registration/Bring Your Own Breakfast | 8:30 -  9:00 am: Introductions/Presentation | 9:00 – 9:30 am: Q&A and Wrap-Up
Cost: FREE (members only)


Mary Ellen Holden is an Advisor to the Geena Davis Institute and is spearheading development of a robust New York membership base for the Institute and programming slate for this important entertainment and media community. Holden boasts a twenty-five-year career in media, marketing and business development in the entertainment, news, sports, live event and promotional licensing industries. Her career began in promotional licensing, sponsorship sales and sports marketing for the USOC, Hanna-Barbera, Jim Henson Productions and Nickelodeon. She participated in The Big Help and worked with CityKids to diffuse the power of stereotypes on children ages 11 and under.

Today, she is one of a select few marketing executives in media who provide companies with a realistic and actionable 360° view of the media ecosystem, revenue opportunities and audience development strategies based on data insights and intuition to responsibly cultivate emerging and iconic brands. As Founder & CEO of MEH Solutions, LLC, a consultancy for the Slash / Economy – Holden is well positioned to engage, educate and influence content creators, audiences and donors about the importance of eliminating unconditional bias and changing stereotypes in media. Clients include: Jack Myers MediaVillage and Kay Koplovitz, Founder of USA Network and Springboard Growth Capital.

About the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media

Founded by Academy-Award® winning actor and advocate Geena Davis in 2004, The Institute is the first and only research-based organization working within the media and entertainment industry to engage, educate, and influence content creators, marketers and audiences about the importance of eliminating unconditional bias, highlighting gender balance, challenging stereotypes, creating role models and scripting a wide variety of strong female characters in entertainment and media that targets and influences children ages 11 and under. The Institute is also the only organization employing the GD-IQ tool to create systemic change in entertainment media content creation.