Leaders from San Antonio offer advice to the next generation for Women’s History Month

‘Use your voice for something greater than yourself’

Women leaders from San Antonio, Bexar County. (KSAT)

SAN ANTONIO – Women are increasingly at the forefront of success across every industry.

As part of Women’s History Month, KSAT has told the story of some of those historic contributions from women spanning generations and leadership roles.

Now, we’re leaning on some of the women in powerful roles across the South Texas community to provide words of wisdom to the next generation of leaders.

We asked, simply, what advice do you have for young women and girls. Here’s what they had to say.

Texas State Senator Judith Zaffirini:

“Embrace lifelong learning and commit to strengthening your best talents and your worst weaknesses. This includes memorializing your lessons learned as you observe and analyze those who succeed and those who fail, explore new avenues for demonstrating your priority skills and for practicing your elementary abilities, welcome every opportunity to express your perspective while considering opposing viewpoints, adapt to changing times as you build from a foundation of your core principles and values, and strive to serve others rather than to be served by them.

“Success and happiness are facilitated by prioritizing faith and family first, public and civic service second, and business and political goals third.

“Equally important, define your mantra. Mine is “Serviam!” (I shall serve!), learned from the Ursuline nuns.”

Bexar County Precinct 3 Commissioner Trish DeBerry:

Trish DeBerry (KSAT)

“Don’t let anyone or anything hold you back. More specifically, do not be afraid to stand up for yourself and ask for a raise or a promotion if you have earned it or the opportunity to spend more time with family in order to achieve work/life balance. We live in a post-pandemic time where the workplace dynamic has been upended, work from home has become more normal and diversity within employee ranks are valued more than ever. Now is the time to innovate and create your own mark on the world.

“On that journey, don’t forget to stretch yourself in ways you never thought possible and step outside your comfort zone to look at how you can increase your long-term marketability. Even if you fail, there are so many important lessons to learn from failing forward that you can apply to the next time you step out and do it successfully.

“Lastly, it is possible to have it all – career, family, community volunteer, even elected office. Women are great multi-taskers with the unique ability to do juggle a lot, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you drop a ball. After all, we are only human despite the fact we wear a superhero cape every day.”

Bexar County Precinct 4 Constable Kathryn Brown:

Kathryn Brown (2021)

“Never fear failure, dare to be different and always remember that growth and comfort never coexist!”

Maj. General Angie Salinas, Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas:

Maj. General Angie Salinas. Image courtesy of the Girl Scouts of Southwest Texas. (Copyright 2021 by KSAT - All rights reserved.)

“It’s a challenge to name one piece of advice however I like to share my ‘General thoughts’ by emphasizing ‘performance, performance, performance.’

“No one can argue with results… when a pilot gets into the cockpit, it doesn’t matter their gender, background or ethnicity… their performance as a pilot is what’s noticed. Doing the job well matters as much as one’s character and integrity.

“I would add for young women in 2021 to use their voice for something greater than themselves.”

Asia Ciaravino, San Antonio Youth:

Image courtesy of Asia Ciaravino. (Copyright 2021 by KSAT - All rights reserved.)

“Embrace and invest in your most authentic self. Identify and cultivate your unique talents. Surround yourself with diverse voices that you can learn and grow from. Eat green vegetables and drink water. And most importantly, lead with kindness always. It’s raining all over town.”

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About the Author:

Jakob Rodriguez is a digital journalist at KSAT 12. He's a graduate of Texas State University, where he served as the editor-in-chief of the student-run newspaper, The University Star.