From people packing in to hear Anita Hill speak to the new city initiative hoping to get more women at the helm, empowering women was a big conversation in Kansas City on Tuesday.
City leaders met with male and female members of the Kansas City Fire and Police departments to get their input on any flaws in the system and ways to make the city work better for female employees.
The mayor’s new initiative also aims to get more women on civic boards and commissions.
Right now, of all the people serving on board and commissions, only one third are women. That’s about the same amount of women that are part of the Kansas City Police Department. Of 2004 people, including civilians, 577 are women or 29%.
Of the five Lieutenant Colonels listed on the force, two are women. There are 246 Sergeants on the force, and 29 of them are women including Sgt. Kari Thompson. She remembered what it was like when she told people she wanted to be a police officer.
“You hear the negative speak about the position and how it is not a female, it is a male oriented position. Definitely. You get out there; show your worth and you prove everybody wrong and that's the best reward, proving everyone wrong,” Thompson said.