Cal Women's Network (CWN)

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The Cal Women's Network exists to create a strong community of women* that supports collective learning and growth through social and professional opportunities. 

*All who experience life through the lens of a woman in body, spirit, identity - past, present, future, and fluid.


A campus community where women are empowered to pursue and achieve their professional and personal goals.


Katherine (Kathy) A. Yelick, Vice Chancellor for Research

Lasana Hotep, Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging

CWN Newsletter

Shana Tova image

Wishing a sweet New Year to all who celebrate!

!שנה טובה ומתוקה

The Jewish High Holidays are traditionally a time for reflection and renewal and CWN wishes our Jewish colleagues a sweet and meaningful New Year!

Read the whole CWN newsletter

A complete archive of CWN newsletters is accessible here.

"Events" in large black font, CWN colorful logo in background

Upcoming Events

Strategies for professional community building and upward mobility for women* from underrepresented communities

Date / Time: November 1 from noon - 1:00 pm

Format:  Virtual (Zoom)

Registration (required):


Research shows that robust professional connections lead to more job opportunities, broader and deeper knowledge and faster advancement. There is a lot of information available discussing networking strategies but not much that specifically focuses on demographics who are not yet adequately represented at higher levels of corporate or institutional ladders. People from marginalized communities often face barriers and experience networking differently from those with dominant or privileged identities. Even the term “networking” has a different and somewhat negative connotation. 

Our guest speakers will explore what authentic and effective approaches to professional community building could look like for UC Berkeley staff from underrepresented communities. They will further discuss how supervisors can provide tangible support, and what staff with privileged identities can do to make professional community building more inclusive and accessible to everybody. The overall goal is to come up with strategies for creating a culture that focuses on humanity and supports access and advancement for all.

*All who experience life through the lens of a woman in body, spirit, identity - past, present, future, and fluid.

About the Speakers:

Patricia Juárez: With 30+ years of experience in the IT industry in both México and the U.S. Patricia is the Senior Business Systems Analyst for the Imagine team at Berkeley IT. The team provides enterprise document management system services to all campus departments. As the Senior BSA, Patricia has been instrumental in bringing campus departments towards paperless business processes through a series of complex projects. 

As a leader in her community, Patricia is the founder of two Native Higher Ed Institutions. She has been invited as a visiting scholar on Native Traditions to institutions, such as, UC Berkeley, UC Santa Barbara, Woodland Community College, California College of the Arts, as well as other institutions in the U.S.

Patricia participates with an essay in an anthology of Chicanx/Latinx traditions. The anthology was published in 2019 by The University of Arizona Press. Two of her  essays have been published by Ofrenda Magazine, a prestigious Latinx on-line magazine. Patricia has been spotlighted in the recently published book “The Curanderx Toolkit: Reclaiming Ancestral Latinx Plant Medicine and Rituals for Healing” by author and Bay Area herbalist Atava Garcia-Swiecicki. Patricia is also a frequent analyst and commentator on Latinx and Indigenous issues.

Michelle Hector Branner: Michelle is an exceptional business instructor with significant industry experience. She is currently completing a Doctorate in Organizational Leadership at the University of San Francisco. She has 14 years of successful experience in the financial industry in investment banking, training, human resource management, and leading teams of more than 250 people. Additionally, Michelle has worked in the small business sector where she was influential in supporting business owners to build their business infrastructure. She also has over six years of experience in leading high-performing teams in the technology industry.

Michelle has been teaching various courses for the past twelve years in the school of business. Currently, she teaches the following courses at UC Berkeley: Making Power Moves, Women in Business, Power and Influence, and Strategic Management Skills. Additionally, she teaches Management and Leadership at Golden Gate University and has taught Building & Leading teams at the University of San Francisco. 

Michelle’s extensive experience allows her to use her expertise to elevate small businesses to create, and enhance their infrastructure, and to teach graduate students business fundamentals in large lecture halls. Her passion exudes enthusiasm to motivate people to their greatest potential. This provides her audience with an exceptional experience for progression and for positive results.

Recent Events

The 30 Second Commercial: Communicating Your Best Self w/ Dr. Michelle Branner 

July 13th 12pm - 1pm (Link to view slides)

Join your fellow CWN Members to hear from Michelle Branner, who among many things is a UC Berkeley Extension Professor.  This lunch-hour virtual session will include strategies to maximize how you talk about yourself (and your peers).  Develop skills to give yourself an edge in introductions and other moments that will boost your ability to brand, market, and celebrate your professional identity.  Professor Branner specializes in topics that add to your Power Moves toolbox - this is just one of the many offerings she has for CWN community as we grow together. 

Read more about Professor Branner in this “Making Her Own Power Moves” interview from UC Berkeley Extension’s Voice’s Blog

CWN Headshot Event

June 21st 11am - 3pm 

Ready for your close up? We will next have a photographer available on campus (location TBA) from 11-3pm on Tuesday, June 21st. Come join us for refreshments and fun!

How do you participate? The sign up sheet is available here(link is external), and also includes a waitlist. Email us at sends e-mail) if you have any questions! 

CWN Steering Committee: Info Sessions

Session 1: Friday, May 6, 2pm-2:50pm | Zoom link: is external) 

Session 2: Friday, May 20, 2pm-2:50pm | Zoom link: is external)

Love CWN and want to support its growth to serve more and more women leaders at Cal? Join us for a brown bag info session on ways to get involved. The CWN Steering Committee currently has openings in key outreach areas (i.e. Diversity & Advocacy, Communications, and Historian/Recorded). Can't make the session and/or have questions? Please feel free to email us at:

Mindful Self-Compassion with Jane Sperling Wise

Wednesday, April 27, 12-1pm | Zoom link:

Want to bring some self-compassion into your day? Join us for a lunchtime mindful self-compassion workshop where we’ll explore tools for developing a warm-hearted, connected presence that can support us during times of difficulty. Through guided meditations, exercises, and brief discussions, participants will explore practices that evoke self-compassion in daily life. Note: No previous experience with mindfulness or meditation is necessary to attend. 

This workshop is hosted by one of our CWN members, Jane Sperling Wise, a trained mindful self-compassion teacher through the Center for Mindful Self-Compassion and the Director of Foundation Operations with the UC Berkeley Foundation.

Making Connections: LinkedIn Workshop with Rebecca Andersen

Monday, January 11, 12-1pm, invite sent directly to Making Connections participants via bCal.

All Making Connections participants are invited to a special interactive LinkedIn workshop - just for you. Make edits during the session to have your profile stand out, gain valuable peer feedback, and have fun! This workshop is designed for those who just created a LinkedIn profile yesterday to seasoned LinkedIn users and everyone in between. Bring your questions and curiosity. The workshop will be hosted by Rebecca Andersen, educator, certified Design Your Life and Wellcoaches career coach, and Senior Director of Student & Alumni Career Development at the School of Information.

Cook-Along with Wellness Program Dietician, Kim Guess

Thursday, January 20, 12-1pm, open to all - see CWN Events bCal for Zoom details.

New year, new healthy recipes! If you want to catch up with your colleagues in a fun and health-minded way, learn useful skills, and eat tasty food, join us for a virtual cook-along on Thursday, January 20th from noon to 1:00 pm. If you’d rather not cook-along, you can prepare the recipes later, or just hang out and socialize via Zoom too. We’ll prepare two simple and nutritious recipes using ingredients that you may already have. The grocery list is provided ahead of the event so you have time to acquire any ingredients you don’t already have on hand. If possible, join the Zoom call 10 minutes early to say hi and gather your ingredients and equipment. 

Welcome! We're glad you're here. 

Ways to Connect


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Upcoming Events


2022-23 Steering Committee

Heidi Wagner
Orsolya Nadasdi

Communications Chairs
Katrina Koski, Social Media
Rebecca Andersen, Newsletter
Adrianne Griffith, Advertising/Operations

Community & Social Programs Chairs
Ashley Campos
Vandana Gandhi

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Belonging & Justice (DEIBJ) Chair
Diane Lang

Membership & Assessment Chair
Ziva Armstrong

Professional Development & Education Chair
Aisha Hamilton

Recorder/Historian Chair
Kristen Monahan