The Girl Scout leadership program impacts girls and young women by inspiring them to change ‘Can I?” to “I will!” The proof is in the results. Girl Scout alumna are running businesses, making strides in STEM fields and using their voices to influence politics. Over 80% of today’s business women and 68% of women members of congress are Girl Scout alumna.
Girl Scout alumna and current Girl Scout volunteer, Kristin Herber is Senior Director and Managing Counsel for Under Armour. In this role she is responsible for managing the company’s U.S. and international litigation portfolio including intellectual property, securities, employment, real estate and commercial disputes. While she currently works for one of the most successful global apparel companies, Ms. Herber says volunteering influenced her career. “After regularly volunteering with an organization in my early twenties, my passion for helping people was ignited and I decided to go to law school. Although I now work for a corporation, I continue to help those who cannot afford legal services by providing pro bono legal assistance through many wonderful organizations in Baltimore. I am lucky to work for a company that encourages its employees to give back to the community.”
Do you or have you had a mentor to help guide you through your professional journey?
I have been lucky enough to have several mentors who have provided invaluable support to me over the years, each providing advice at different points in my career. In fact, when I look back at my career path (which admittedly has several twists and turns) I can see that each of those mentors helped me through a specific decision-point, ultimately leading me to the job I have today (which I love). I am grateful to each and every one of them for their support and guidance.
What was the best piece of advice you have received and why was the advice good for you?
My father always tells me to focus on managing the “Business of Kristin.” This advice has helped guide me through many career decisions – whether it was deciding to change jobs, to request a raise or go for a promotion. This advice also motivates me to advocate for myself and do what’s best for me and my personal brand.
What do you think is the best way to encourage the next generation of women professionals to become leaders in their industry/profession, politics or community?
I think it is important for a young woman to be herself and let her passion(s) shine through. If she believes in herself and in what she is doing – whether it’s a professional goal or a specific cause or issue – she is unstoppable.
How are/do you believe you are influencing the next generation?
Professionally, I try to be a sounding board and advocate for all young people with whom I work. I strive to have an open door policy for my younger colleagues to seek advice or simply to vent (and when they seek to vent I try – very hard – to listen only). And when I see a younger colleague going above and beyond or doing stellar work, I send a note to that persons’ manager. With regard to the generation after-next, I serve as a leader of a Girl Scout troop and coach of Girls on the Run. In both roles, I work with my girls to develop strong self-respect and respect for others.
Is there a saying or quote that captures who you are, your work ethic or beliefs that you want to share with others to inspire or encourage them?
The most valuable lesson I learned from my years as a Girl Scout was to “show respect for myself and others through my words and actions.” There are no better words to live by in my book! In addition, she adds, I’m a big believer in the Golden Rule.