SXSW 2017: Convergence Keynote with Jessica Shortall

When SXSW announced that one of their convergence keynote speakers would be Jessica Shortall, I honestly had to do my research. I had no idea who Jessica Shortall was. After a Google search and visiting her website, I couldn’t believe that I had not heard of her sooner. Shortall is a strategy consultant, social entrepreneur, and author of “Work. Pump. Repeat: The New Mom’s Survival Guide to Breastfeeding and Going back to Work.” She has been on TED Talks and has written in many publications such as The Huffington Post, ELLE magazine, Mashable, and The Atlantic to name a few.

Photo credit: Sara Montour

Shortall is also the Managing Director of Texas Competes, the statewide coalition of businesses making the economic case for an LGBT-welcoming Texas brand. Texas Competes launched in April 2015 with 79 Texas employers and chambers of commerce as signatories to its free pledge.

At her panel, Shortall spoke about social impact in Texas, particularly with LGBTQ rights, and about current events and politics.

Shortall reminds us that no matter who you disagree with, it’s important to consider their point-of-view.

Shortall talks about emotions and rhetoric regarding the bathroom bill in Texas, which would “transgender people from using the bathrooms in government buildings, public schools and universities that match their gender identity, as well as nix city laws that protect their rights to do so,” according to the Dallas Morning News.

Shortall segues into talking about the protests and rallies in the country and how a lot of data show that there is no evidence to backup the bathroom bill.

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