Sure, the label “Power Mom” can be a bit intimidating — especially in this city. (Do they sleep? Have talons? What’s the deal?) But we promise, after reading about this group of awesome, accomplished women, even the most wary among you will feel pumped. Representing fields ranging from design, media, education, science, fashion, finance and beyond — and often possessing a killer entrepreneurial streak — these ladies are inspiring examples of sisters doin’ it for themselves, while also making family a priority. (Oh, but “Work/Life” balance? They all kind of call B.S. on that concept, and offer their own take on it.) Click through to meet your new lady-crushes!
Amy Emmerich, Chief Content Officer, Refinery29
When Amy Emmerich isn't kicking around her East Village neighborhood, picking apples or watching Zootopia for the umpteenth time with her daughter, 3, and son, 2, she's overseeing the content group made up of editorial, video, photo, design and strategy and growth at the leading digital-media company focused on women, Refinery29. ("I support makers of dreams," she offers.) After previous work at media outlets such as Vice and Scripps, Emmerich was brought in to the company just two years ago to launch the site's video business. "Building a quality and award-winning video production group from scratch was hard work, but seeing it pay off in the mission driven work that we create at Refinery fills me with great pride."
Yet Another Reason To Like Her: Ask her about her kids' names: Emmerich Sandeen Oberschmidt (aka Emzy) and Flash Gorman Sean Oberschmidt. (Yes, all real names and on birth certificates.) "Emzy and Flash do sound like a superhero team but they think they are both villains. We're working on that," she says."'Emmerich' was because I thought I'd change my name — which I never did — and 'Sandeen' is because I got caught up in Twilight and 'Renesmee' and so now my poor daughter has [a mashup of] my mother's name, 'Sandy' and my mother-in-law's name 'Kathleen': 'Sandeen.' 'Flash' is just awesome, and it is 'Gorman' not 'Gordan.' 'Gorman' is a play off my mother-in-law's maiden name 'O'gorman.' Let's just say we had time on our hands back then."
Work/Life: "Work/life balance was created by man to force us to do twice as much work. It's a societal norm that pushes us into exhaustion and self-scrutiny. Throw it out. Find yourself and you do you, baby. What works for you and your family is the balance. I am blessed to have parents living nearby who help us as well as a husband who can work part-time and I'm not ashamed that we layer daycare on top of that.
I've come to find a rhythm for us is starting by 5:45 a.m. with a poke in the face by my son, [then] breakfast and a little dance party and sometimes out the door by 8. I miss too many bedtimes, but I disconnect big time on the weekends and focus on the quality. The world has tricked us into thinking that hot dogs and TV are bad so when we use them we are weak. Well I say flip that narrative: hot dogs are from heaven and TV is the family epicenter of a good fort and some popcorn. So don't beat yourself up, write your own story, and most importantly don't judge others or compare. We are all just having our own adventures."
photo: Amy emmerich
Who’s the Power Mom in your life? (Besides you or your spouse, of course.) Sing her praises in the comments below!
— Mimi O’Connor