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Australian Centre for Leadership for Women Recognises Karen McFadzen as Bronze Winner of the 2012 Sustaining Women’s Empowerment in Communities and Organisation’s Award

With International Women’s Day passing last week, Cisco was extremely proud to have our very own Karen McFadzen, Vice President Asia Pacific, Greater China, Japan named as the Bronze Winner of the 2012 ‘Sustaining Women’s Empowerment in Communities and Organisations’ award. Karen has been recognised for her constant hard work and organisational initiatives to achieve gender diversity at the executive level in Cisco Technical Services Team. She was able to do this not just in Australia but also throughout the Asia Pacific region.

The SWECO award is an initiative of the Australian Centre for Leadership For Women and recognises individuals who have developed a sustainable initiative to empower women in a community or organisation (see full press release here).

Karen McFadzen has been at Cisco for 11 years and in that period has been the key driver in numerous initiatives which have resulted in more gender equality at Cisco and which we hope will rub off on our competitors and partners. Karen has been responsible for changing hiring practices and improving pipeline development to bring more talented women into the IT industry.

Karen has led the charge in shaping the Cisco culture of equality through the championing of workshops and training sessions to discuss Cisco values and perceptions on inclusion and diversity. The Cisco Connected Women Resource Group has a mission to hire and develop women, with the aim of achieving a diverse workforce has also been a product of Karen’s devotion to the cause of gender equality.

The Cisco Asia Pacific Technical Services team in 2000 was made up of 20% non-English speaking backgrounds and had about 6% women. Today Karen’s team is extremely diverse, located across 14 countries with just about 50% of executives being female.

These are some truly outstanding achievements, congratulations Karen!

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4 Comments.


  1. It’s always great to see professional women being appreciated in the IT sphere. Well done Karen, well done Cisco! I hope that’ll serve as a good example for many other IT companies out there.

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  2. It will certainly be a breakthrough for humanity gender parity in all areas of workplaces and other measures. One should not underestimate discrimar or anyone for sex. Congratulations to Cisco for adopting these measures.

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  3. Kudos Karen McFadzen! You’re truly amazing and you have proven a real women power!

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