Earlier this summer, Chestnut Hill resident Farah Jimenez was appointed to the Pennsylvania Commission for Women by Governor Tom Corbett. Jimenez is the past executive director of Mt. Airy USA (MAUSA).
The commission is committed to identifying and advancing the needs and interests of women and girls in Pennsylvania by informing, educating and advocating for them through economic and civic opportunities. It promotes upward mobility for women and encourages the operation and support of small businesses owned and operated by women. This year, the commission is comprised of 25 women that will each serve a two-year term.
Jimenez is the president and CEO of the People’s Emergency Center that provides services to homeless women and their children.
She is an active community members serving on the board of La Salle University and Einstein Healthcare Network as well as on the grant-making committee for the Philadelphia Foundation. She has also been an active Republican Party. In 2004 she served on President Bush’s Pennsylvania steering committee. In 2006, President Bush appointed Jimenez to a five-year term on the Community Development Advisory Board of the U.S. Treasury Department’s Community Development Financial Institutions Fund.
She is not sure who nominated her as a candidate for the commission, but thinks it had to do with the relationship she built with the Republican Governor’s office as well participating in the inaugural class of the Anne B. Anstine Excellence in Public Service Series in 2003.
For her, it is more about ensuring certain audiences are invited to share their opinions rather than the actual program, but she is “super excited” for the opportunity.
“I view it as an opportunity to be able to give voice to a population of women who generally don’t find themselves having an opportunity to be involved at a statewide level on issues affecting them,” said Jimenez.
In addition to creating more empowerment and mentoring programs for women, the commission seeks to provide valuable information on issues that are socioeconomic inclusive such as health.
“I think the biggest challenge given the realities of a two year term is that you have to be laser focused or you might find yourself distracted with lots of issues,” said Jimenez.
She maintained the importance of ensuring that that the programs they work towards should be achievable and have long-term sustainability especially given the political climate.
She is currently not involved in any political campaigns, but is considering an offer to participate in the statewide “Women for Romney 2012” campaign later in the summer.