25 Jan 2024

Our Speakers Reflect on the International Women’s Day 2024 Theme: Count Her In


As Australia commemorates International Women’s Day 2024 with the theme “Count Her In: Invest in Women. Accelerate Progress,” our attention is directed towards exploring pathways for greater economic inclusion for women and girls globally. Despite advancements, substantial obstacles persist, emphasising the need for equal access to education, employment, financial services, and literacy to attain genuine gender equality. In this special blog post, some of the incredible female speakers on our roster share insightful reflections on this year’s IWD theme, contributing to a collective narrative that envisions a world where women are not just counted, but actively invested in for accelerated progress.


Pauline Nguyen


Pauline Nguyen, a best-selling author and award-winning businesswoman, triumphed over adversity as a Vietnamese refugee to become one of Australia’s top entrepreneurs. Through her inspiring story and acclaimed speaking engagements, she empowers others to reshape their narratives for a better future.


“I believe the call to ‘Count Her In’ is not only the call to ‘Invest in Women’.  It is the call to invest in women on diverse backgrounds. It is the call to invite and embrace our differences, and include our unique diversity, not just as a social responsibility but as a powerful weapon for business and for life. If we come from different places, we arrive at unique answers and find new solutions faster. It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognise, accept, embrace and celebrate those differences. Because we cannot fight separatism with more separatism. Hurt people hurt people. Healed people heal people. Because connection is why we are here.  Connection is what gives our lives Meaning and purpose. Let us not settle for the ordinary.  Let us embrace and celebrate the extraordinary.”

Div Pillay


With over 25 years of experience, Div Pillay is a renowned diversity and inclusion leader, specializing in gender, race, and cultural inclusion. As the founder of award-winning consultancy MindTribes, she collaborates globally with executive teams and HR leaders, earning recognition as an influential leader in the field.


This year my call to action is to business leaders, who can make a big impact to economic inclusion of women in their workforces by auditing pay equity with an intersectional lens and by auditing the structural biases in recruitment, selection and promotion that unfairly discriminates against women holding them back from their full economic participation in the workforce. Don’t assume that your pay, hiring and promotional practices are fair for all women, prove that they are with evidence – your data is likely aggregated not disaggregated and this leaves First Nation’s women, women from migrant backgrounds; women of colour, women with a disability and other women who are vulnerable behind.”

Jana Pittman


Jana Pittman, a 2021 Sports Hall of Fame inductee, embodies resilience and determination as a two-time World Champion and four-time Commonwealth Champion in athletics. Not only has she excelled on the track, but she also made history by representing Australia in both Summer and Winter Olympics, transitioning to the bobsleigh team.


“ Inspiring our women and girls to believe their dreams are possible, will help build a society where we all feel we are ‘enough’ and ‘equal’ to our peers. To do this we need to increase the investment into their education and economic independence. Over time, their belief and capacity will continue to grow and inspire those that come after them”

The resonant theme for International Women’s Day 2024, “Count Her In: Invest in Women. Accelerate Progress” serves as a powerful reminder, urging us to break down barriers and actively invest in the journey toward true economic inclusion. Recognising and valuing women’s contributions is a critical step toward global advancement. The foundation of a brighter future lies in fostering a sense of belonging, relevance, and empowerment through inclusive practices.

In celebrating the achievements of women worldwide, let us acknowledge that genuine progress transcends borders. Through the lens of counting her in, we lay the groundwork for a world where every woman’s voice is heard, valued, and actively supported.

Our speakers at ICMI present stories and perspectives that amplify the spirit of International Women’s Day. 

See our extensive list of International Women’s Day speakers 2024 here 


Interested in booking a speaker for International Women’s Day? Call us now on 1800 334 625 or make an enquiry online.


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