In all the frenzy about Russia, North Korea, Obamacare and border security, you may have missed news from the Trump and Trudeau administrations about diversity and equality. The National Venture Capital Association didn’t and is throwing its support behind a new initiative.

It’s called the Council for Advancement of Women Entrepreneurs and Business Leaders.

Women as entrepreneurs and investors face more than a “glass ceiling,” from funding to support to parity in advancement and compensation. As Cindy Whitehead, former CEO of Sprout Pharmaceuticals which she sold for $1 billion two years ago, pointed out at an event at her new Pinkubator last week, women are going to continue to fight to overcome these challenges. And her partnership with Crowdfunder as well as providing mentorship as well as funding to female-lead startups reflects a strong personal commitment.

The move made by Trump and Trudeau has received little notice, however.

Here is what President Trump and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Feb. 13:

“It is a priority of both countries to ensure equal opportunities for women in the workforce. We are committed to removing barriers to women’s participation in the business community and supporting women as they advance through it.

“As part of this effort, we are creating a Canada-United States Council for Advancement of Women Entrepreneurs and Business Leaders. We expect this initiative to promote the growth of women-owned enterprises and to further contribute to our overall economic growth and competitiveness, as well as the enhanced integration of our economies.”

Trump also hosted a White House meeting with female executives later than week.

“In order to create economic growth and lots of very good, well-paying jobs, we must ensure that our economy is a place where women can work and thrive,” he said.

(Watch the video at: )

NVCA’s support

The NVCA, which represents the venture industry across the U.S., praised the move in a letter to the White House last week:

“America’s venture capitalists are ready, eager, and able to partner with your Administration on this important initiative. NVCA members, hundreds of U.S. venture capital and corporate venture capital groups, support entrepreneurs by investing capital and resources to build the next-generation of innovative companies,” wrote Bobby Franklin, President and CEO of NVCA.

“Diversity and inclusion are business imperatives for the venture capital industry. We believe that leveraging the potential of a diversity of investors and entrepreneurs is key to the advancement of innovation and the U.S. economy.”

The NVCA is taking steps itself to try to drive more diversity across gender and race in the still-white-male-dominated venture industry. And Franklin acknowledged that in the letter.

“The venture capital industry plays a vital role in our nation’s economy by growing young businesses and creating jobs, but its current workforce is not representative of the overall U.S. population,” he acknowledged. “To maintain our country’s leadership in this competitive industry, it is necessary that we take productive steps towards creating equal opportunities for women business leaders and entrepreneurs.” 

Read more about the Trump-Trudeau initiative at: