The prize is awarded annually to someone who has made an exceptional contribution to the position of women within Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) or Erasmus MC.

Our Executive Director Professor Hanneke Takkenberg received the FAME Athena Award during the 108th Dies Natalis at Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) on November 8th.

Prof. Takkenberg was honoured by Female Academics Moving toward Equity (FAME), which established the Athena Award to honour university staff members who have made an exceptional effort to promote female talent – and set a fine example for their colleagues in the process.

Before announcing Prof. Takkenberg as this year's winner, FAME's Professor Liesbeth Noordegraaf-Eelens spent a few minutes reflecting on ECWO founder, Prof. Dianne Bevelander, who won the award in 2019. "She meant a lot to all of us - but especially to the female part of this academia. And she was very persistent in promoting female careers so I am very happy that last week we planted a memorial tree to remember eveything Dianne did."

In her acceptance speech, Prof. Takkenberg noted that Prof. Bevelander was a "big inspiration".

"She taught me that women can lead from wherever they are and that women are also important agents of change when it comes to gender balance in organisations like ours.

"We may not be there yet when it comes to gender balance but we are well on our way in both the Erasmus MC and the Erasmus University. We still have a bit of work to do and I promise you that I will not retire until all women and all men in our community experiences equal opportunities, equal pay and a safe academic environment to work in and thrive in."

Read more about Prof. Takkenberg's views on the importance of equal opportunities here

More information

The Erasmus Centre for Women and Organisations (ECWO) is committed to women’s continued advancement into leadership positions across multiple sectors – from multinationals and start-ups to not-for-profit organisations. ECWO supports gender-balanced leadership through its management educationresearch and events about gender equality, and by coaching female business leaders. Its strong network leads to women empowerment and gender equality to the benefit of business and society.

EC for women and organisations