Tina Brown's Second Annual Newsweek and The Daily Beast's Women in the World Summit Brings Change and Opens Dialogue to Those in Need

Mar 12, 2011, 21:45 ET from The Daily Beast

NEW YORK, March 12, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Tina Brown, closing Newsweek and The Daily Beast's three-day Women in the World summit in New York, announced that, during the event, audience members had pledged over $100,000 to the causes the summit had highlighted. The donations will go to help combat sex trafficking in the United States, battle the rape epidemic affecting thousands of women in Congo, to support Dr. Hawa Abdi, whose camp in Somalia for 90,000 refugees remains vulnerable to killing raids by rebel boy-soldiers, and a number of other incredible causes.

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Speakers from the Middle East, Asia, Africa, and former Secretaries of State Madeleine Albright and Condoleezza Rice endorsed Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton's summit declaration that women's rights are integral to the movements for democracy. Said Secretary Clinton, "I think that (the Women in the World summit) is really cutting edge...it is not just something nice to talk about, it is absolutely central to whether we will have the kind of peace, security, stability, opportunity, equality that we seek in the world."

On the opening night of the summit, Cairo-based blogger Dalia Zaida proclaimed that in Egypt, "Democracy will never happen without women's rights." Dr. Nawal El Saadawi, the 79-year-old Egyptian writer and surgeon who was in Tahrir Square every day with the protesters, spoke on the closing day of the summit about how both women and the young men who were there are angry that the military-appointed commission to examine the way forward did not include a single woman – a critical point noted by former Chilean president Michelle Bachelet, Executive director of UN Women in an interview with Barbara Walters. New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand warned women not to sit on the sidelines of the debates in Washington. "If you don't opt in, you won't like the outcome."

The 2011 Women in the World summit, brought together brave dissidents from the streets of Tahrir square, dedicated journalists trying to tell the truth in countries where it is a deadly vocation and resourceful entrepreneurs launching self-sustaining businesses was held over three days by Tina Brown and co-hosts Diane von Furstenberg, Meryl Streep, Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, President of the Rockefeller Foundation Judith Rodin and Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Managing Director of the World Bank.

On the opening night of the summit, following a provocative conversation between three brave "firebrand" women of the Middle East moderated by Christiane Amanpour, Tina Brown interviewed President Bill Clinton. The former president gave a candid, expansive conversation ranging from his views on Libya (where his support for a no-fly zone is at odds with the Obama administration's position) to why America has never had a female president.

"We were honored to be a partner in this year's Women in the World summit and are extremely proud of our relationship with Newsweek and The Daily Beast," said Gabi Zedlmayer, vice president, Office of Global Social Innovation, HP. "The dynamic women we heard from this year are driving genuine societal change and providing leadership for an inspirational mission to empower women around the world."

The second annual Women in the World summit was produced in partnership with HP, American Express, The Coca-Cola Company, David Yurman, Delta Airlines, ExxonMobil, Goldman Sachs 10,000 Women, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Thomson Reuters and the Virtue Foundation.

Video highlights of the 2011 Women in the World summit are available at www.thedailybeast.com.

SOURCE The Daily Beast