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A typical response, if you’ve tried to recruit a male as an AAUW member. For most men, thoughts of joining a women’s organization are quickly dismissed. After all, how can a male possibly contribute, and if he could, would he be accepted?

Why did I join? Three reasons: (1) My wife, a long-term member, has gained so much from the organization and is always energized when she participates in an AAUW activity. (2) The importance of the mission: driving equity is vital to the societal and economic health of our nation. (3) The relevance of the strategic process: recognizing the need to transform and taking action provide many exciting opportunities to contribute.

I’ve stayed a member because I’ve been both welcomed by every AAUW member that I’ve met and afforded the opportunity to participate in a variety of meaningful activities. Most important, it is clear how well the organization leadership is working together to pursue the strategic process.

Have you been successful in recruiting and retaining men? At a minimum, recruit them as members at large, but then also take the time to keep them connected and look for opportunities for them to contribute. If you’ve been successful in recruiting men, please share your thoughts.

When we focus on pursuit of the mission, gender, generation, and ethnicity don’t matter. We need the talents, skills, and voices of as many as possible.

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