Connecticut-based Lily Riccio is the founder of Power of Girl. Read our interview with her below to learn more about Power of Girl, starting an initiative while balancing school work, and because we are just coming off Women’s History month, one important woman in history she would love to interview. Thank you, Lily!
What is Power of Girl and why is your work through it meaningful to you?
Power of Girl is a website I created that shares the stories of women in order to inspire the girls of the future. I’ve done over 40 interviews to date with a variety of diverse female entrepreneurs, athletes, artists, engineers, scientists, and more! It’s meaningful to me because I always found it hard to find stories of successful women in the career field I want to go into—film. I figured that other girls might have come across the same problem, so… I created Power of Girl to provide a platform where girls can find the personal stories of women who are successful in their fields.
What was the hardest part of getting it up and running? Any failures or doubts along the way and if so, what did you learn from them?
One hard part of this experience has been simply getting in contact with women. I often just send an email, but sometimes it’s difficult to access their emails. Another difficulty, after it was up and running, was simply getting people onto the site. Luckily, within a week of the launch, I was fortunate enough to be featured in People magazine! It was so helpful in getting an audience!
How do you balance running Power of Girl and your schoolwork?
It’s all about time management. For me, I actually work better and more efficiently when I have multiple tasks at hand—it pushes me to stay on a schedule!
Where do you want to take it in 5 years? 10 years?
I want to continue interviewing women and hopefully expand the site to not just text interviews, but also video interviews. I think this would be a unique element to add.
If you could go back in time and interview any woman in history, who would it be and why?
It would be really cool to interview Audrey Hepburn. She’s known for being an iconic actress, but she was also an activist and philanthropist at a time where women weren’t really “expected” to be those things. She publicly spoke out against her parents who were Nazi sympathizers, which was such a brave thing to do. Additionally, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in December 1992 for her work with UNICEF! She’s super inspiring.
What advice do you have for young women who want to launch their own initiative, big or small?
Just do it, even if it scares you! The hardest thing to do is actually start the project (big or small), but once you get past that, everything gets easier and easier. Another piece of advice I would give is to get comfortable with getting pushed out of your comfort zone. I’m a quiet person, so at first, interviewing successful women was very nerve-wracking and intimidating. But, I pushed myself to do it and each one got easier and easier.
Do you have a mentor? Who do you look to for inspiration and support?
I don’t really know if I have a mentor, but I do look up to a lot of people, both within and outside of the women I have interviewed. A great thing about Power of Girl is that I’ve met such amazing and inspiring women; women that I would not have had the opportunity to meet had it not been for this initiative.
You have interviewed a ton of influential, wisdom-filled women. Any final words of wisdom to all the young women out there who are strategizing to reach their education, career, and wellness goals?
Accept help. It’s important to collaborate with others because everyone has their own skill set. Almost every woman who I’ve interviewed has told me the same thing: they wouldn’t be where they are without the generous help of others. At times, it’s tempting to be independent and just do it yourself, but it’s essential to welcome advice, assistance, and even criticism no matter how hard it is!
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