Men have as big a role play as women if true gender parity is to be achieved in many areas of life, Meghan Markle, the actress and humanitarian, told delegates at the Cayman Alternative Investment Summit, which has been taking place in Grand Cayman this week (February 4-5).
The actress who is a star on the hit US TV show Suits, told the audience of investment professionals and service providers that parallels could be drawn between the hedge funds industry and the acting profession in that fewer women achieve senior positions and there can be a gender pay gap.
She said more could be done and change could be faster in both industries – and men could play their part in driving change. She cited the example of a group of CEOs in Australia who refuse to speak at conferences or events unless women are also fairly represented at the event.
“We need everyone to be involved including men,” she said. “They should do it simply because it is the right thing to do for the world. They say that slow and steady wins the race but want to speed things up.”
Markle was appointed UN Women Advocate for Women’s Leadership & Political Participation last year and has made many speeches on the subject. Interviewed on stage by Chris Duggan, vice president, Dart Enterprises, she also discussed how her break through into acting came about – after just five years of auditions.
“I always say, ‘don’t give it five minutes if you won’t give it five years’. I feel very lucky. There are plenty of people still waiting tables after 20 years of seeking that breakthrough into my profession,” she said.
Cayman Alternative Investment Summit, Meghan Markle, Suits, Gender Equality, UN Women Advocate