Orianne Pagano: From Georgetown to activism and beyond

As a 21-year-old Georgetown student at the time of the 2001 9/11 attacks, Orianne Pagano’s life changed dramatically, one when she was pushed to take part in organizations that fight for justice and equality. After high school, she spent a year working as a Teach for America teacher and college student and helped on a campaign and with an organization called Feminism in Movement.

In a relatively short time, with time spent traveling in many parts of the United States and world, Pagano has pushed women’s issues, including protecting education, women’s rights, and sexual violence.

She was recognized as a Skadden fellow in 2009 and won first place for women’s issues at a White House conference on new thinking for civil society in May 2013. She attended a meeting at Google’s headquarters to discuss civil society leadership strategies and went to Carnegie Mellon to read and write about women’s issues.

Prior to moving to D.C., Pagano trained in ways to identify ways to overcome barriers and a 15-week program at Leadership Greater Washington.

She specializes in working with women and girls in marginalized cultures or those who have suffered from violence.

Pagano is a founding member of One20, a movement to build a global network of 20 organizations that work to increase women’s leadership and accelerate gender equality. She’s worked closely with organizations like Freedom for Girls, where she conducted workshops for educational professionals, started a feminist and college health magazine, and created the Yellow Coffee Club, a female friendship and a safe space club where women can share their stories.

After graduating from Georgetown with a bachelor’s degree in global business, she spent a year in Rwanda, where she consulted for the United Nations on gender equality. In 2008, she interned with then-Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential campaign in Chicago and in 2009, interned at the UN in New York.

Despite three years of gap time, she was still finding time to devote to advocacy and issues in her new, part-time job of writing public education blog For One Girl . In 2010, she founded One20, which is dedicated to the promotion of women’s leadership.

Read Orianne Pagano’s personal blog for a glimpse into her world.

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