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Empowering Change: A Conversation with YWLC's Vice Chair on Championing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

As YWLC continues its commitment to inclusivity, meet our 8th Exco’s Vice Chair, Casherine Goh. Alongside assisting the Chairperson to lead the 8th Exco, Casherine is also spearheading the organisation's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives, as well as co-helming YWLC’s International Women’s Day celebrations. In this exclusive interview, she shares her vision, strategies, and passion for fostering a more diverse and equitable community, ensuring every woman's leadership journey is supported and celebrated.

Can you share a pivotal moment or experience that significantly contributed to your growth as a leader, and how it shaped your perspective within YWLC?

Be led to lead others. Leadership development is a journey. For me, a huge part of this journey is influenced by the leaders that I have worked with, or worked for, in my career and volunteering experiences. They have inspired me to recognise the importance of staying curious, knowing your personal values and intentionally developing competencies and qualities that guides, influences, and inspires. As cliche as it sounds, being led has taught me how to lead others, and motivates me to keep learning and growing. 

Be inspired to inspire others. For me, the ripple effect of inspiring others started from the spark of being inspired. Over the years, I have been inspired by my family, friends, leaders, mentors and sponsors; and they have shaped my mindset around the importance of building strong female communities, and paying it forward to the society and next generation of leaders. I started volunteering in 2020 across different organisations such as YWLC, Voices Of Asia, SMU and at my current workplace to support causes that I am passionate about such as mentorship, female empowerment, leadership development and sustainability.

Be empowered to empower others. Looking back at my career path, being given opportunities to contribute and create positive impact were defining moments. It is so important to create a safe space where everyone is encouraged to think out of the box, push their boundaries, and grow. YWLC has always served as a platform that empowers every member to achieve their fullest leadership potential, and I envision this community to grow even further and stronger over the next two years with the initiatives that the 8th exco team intends to run!

How do you envision building upon the achievements of your predecessor, and what specific initiatives do you plan to introduce to further advance YWLC's mission?

Colette Zheng, previous Vice Chairperson of 7th Exco, had achieved many milestones during her term where I had the privilege to experience personally when I was an active sub-committee member across Member Journey, Member Engagement and Strategy & Partnerships portfolios. These include her active representation of YWLC in internal and external events, two successful runs of YWLC’s International Women’s Day celebrations in 2022 and 2023, and driving the executive committee towards a common mission. Over the next two years, here are my key focus as Vice Chairperson of the 8th Executive Committee:

  1. Building a collaborative leadership team that works towards the 8th Exco strategic goals. As shared by Yvonne Mak, Chairperson of 8th Exco, the team has 5 strategic goals that we are working towards over the next two years. I see my role as a connector within the team - to bridge potential gaps and encourage cross-team collaboration so that the team achieves our aligned goals. 

  2. Integrating our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) strategy across the organization and the initiatives we run. Effective DEI strategies start from strong leadership commitment - it is important for the 8th Exco to champion diversity and inclusion and set the tone. The previous executive committees have done an excellent job in building a strong foundation for our DEI strategy, and I see the importance to continue being consistent in integrating our strategy through the events that we run, and communicating it to our members and our stakeholders. 

What excites you the most about your portfolio?

YWLC is committed to cultivating a culture of diversity and inclusion across our organization. We believe that our community thrives when we celebrate individuality and authenticity in identities, interests and ideas. 

We have demonstrated this commitment through our flagship events such as our annual flagship IWD event in March, as well as our Diversity in Womanhood series launched since 2020. Through these initiatives, YWLC has developed a strong branding in Singapore as a community that drives gender equity and inclusivity. 

I look forward to continue working with like-minded YWLC members who are passionate about diversity and inclusion, to inspire change and action through these flagship initiatives. I envision a future where YWLC is that safe space for individuals to understand more about DEI topics, ignite dialogues to learn from one another’s experiences in building an inclusive environment.

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