Facing the Shortness of Life with Suzanne Beigel

June 26, 2023  • Aspen Global Leadership Network

Suzanne Biegel (Catto Fellow), a beloved member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network was diagnosed with incurable lung cancer in 2022. In confronting the end of her life, Suzanne has found a clarified vision around how to spend her time, live into her purpose, and speak truth. It’s with gratitude that Suzanne joins us on LIMINAL to explore how we might all allow the shortness of life to shape how we show up for the better.

Suzanne’s Legacy: Heading for Change

Suzanne is renowned for her ability to foster collaboration and drive change. Leading at the intersection of gender-smart and climate investment, she has spent her 22-year career making finance more inclusive and impactful. She’s championed the idea that combining gender and climate investment can yield powerful results in both mitigating climate change and promoting gender equality. 

As her legacy project, Suzanne and her husband Daniel recently launched Heading for Change – a donor advised fund aimed at making catalytic investments that are both gender and climate smart. Starting with their own $1MM endowment, the fund will demonstrate what these types of investments look like, and, when combined, achieve greater impact on both climate mitigation and adaptation and gender equality. 

They are actively raising funds and looking for partnership. If you’re someone who can support fund managers at the intersection of climate and gender equity work or are interested in learning about neurodivergent thinking, go to headingforchange.org to learn how to get involved. 

Hear more about Suzanne’s impact and reflections on this time in her life in a special video conversation between her and AGLN moderator Betsy Flemming. Special thanks to Be Inspired Films for producing the dialogue. 

Music and Poetry

Throughout this episode, we share poetry and music. Explore what we mentioned: 

  • Playlist: Check out this playlist to hear some of Suzanne’s favorite “pink” tunes.
  • Poem: The Ponds by Mary Oliver
  • Poem: Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude by Ross Gay

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Explore the space between our greatest challenges and a better future on LIMINAL: Leadership in the Process of Becoming. Dar Vanderbeck, Vice President of the Aspen Global Leadership Network is your host and guide to inquiry with thinkers and doers daring to lead through the big, systemic transitions we need for true transformation. This season, we’ll talk anti-racism, climate change, the future of work, and more. Join us as we explore leadership in the process of becoming.

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To learn more about the network and the work of our Fellows, visit agln.aspeninstitute.org. And explore more episodes of the LIMINAL here.