March 31, 2021


Julie Lata


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Choosing to Challenge


by Julie Lata

Mar 31, 2021

In March, Applied Materials employees responded to the International Women’s Day 2021 theme, #ChooseToChallenge, by raising up women’s voices, celebrating male allyship and providing resources on supporting youth to become confident leaders and innovators, regardless of gender.

In addition to sharing daily informational content and calls to action among our workforce, employees from throughout Applied, led by our Women’s Professional Development Network employee resource groups, hosted inspiring events to celebrate women’s contributions to society and the company.

Here is a brief summary of activities by site:

  • In China, Women’s Day is a holiday and Applied encouraged female employees to celebrate the occasion with their families.
  • In India, employees held an entire week of activities running up to International Women’s Day, including a Virtual Pledge Wall, quizzes and an employee-focused panel conversation. All month long they helped tell the stories of women at Applied through informational videos.
  • In Israel, employees highlighted the work of local girls and women empowerment organizations.
  • In Japan, employees hosted a working mom’s conversation where 10 working mothers shared their experiences. Topics included flexibility for parents, encouraging male employees to take paternity leave and creating a way for parents to share information with each other easily.
  • In Korea, employees celebrated “Women's Day in the World” by encouraging employees to post a story of a woman who lives (or lived) a challenging life as a way to celebrate the strength of women in society.
  • In Singapore, employees organized a fireside chat with two female executives, followed by a networking session. Applied also sponsored the inaugural Singapore Semiconductor Industry Association Women’s Forum.
  • In Taiwan, employees celebrated each other’s special contributions by posting notes of encouragement and positivity to themselves and others.
  • In the United States, employees hosted conversations and activities for colleagues to celebrate Women’s History Month, including virtual volunteering opportunities with community organizations. In addition, Applied leaders joined Dwana Franklin-Davis, CEO of Reboot Representation, and diversity leader Yolanda Owens for a discussion on further cultivating Applied’s culture of inclusion.

Obviously, 31 days of content celebrating women and their accomplishments will not “fix” gender inequality, just like the 28 days in February focused on Black History do not solve systemic racism. But, with each month of activities, new conversations are started, empathy and understanding are increased, and the idea of an equitable society becomes more realistic. Until then, we will #ChooseToChallenge.

Tags: Women's History Month, women's empowerment, choose to challenge, employee engagement

Julie Lata

Program Manager, Global Community Affairs


As a Global Community Affairs Manager, Julie leads strategic community investments in Silicon Valley and the Applied Materials Foundation’s Generation Girl® initiative, inspiring girls to pursue their dreams. In her spare time, Julie enjoys practicing yoga, running, and spending time with friends and family.

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