SoundGirls is a nonprofit dedicated to expanding opportunities for girls and women in music.  SoundGirls.Org was formed in 2013 by veteran live sound engineers Karrie Keyes and Michelle Sabolchick Pettinato and operates under the Fiscal Sponsorship of The California Women’s Music Festival. Spotify has teamed up with non-profit organisation SoundGirls to launch the EQL Directory, a global database of women working in music.

History of SoundGirls

In 2012, Karrie Keyes and Michelle Sabolchick Pettinato participated in the “Women of Professional Concert Sound” panel at the AES Conference in San Francisco. This experience was how incredibly powerful the panelists. We had all been in the business for 20 years or more, yet most of us had never met before that day, and within minutes we bonded like long-lost sisters. We were struck by how similar our experiences, work ethics and passions were and wondered why our paths had never crossed and how our careers would have been different had we been there to support each other through the years. We were empowered. Each of us had been asked hundreds of times in our careers: Are there other women doing sound? How did you get into sound? How would a young woman go about getting into sound? SoundGirls was established to provide women working in professional audio a community to come to for support and advice, and for empowerment and inspiration.

Since that time SoundGirls has grown into an international organization with over 6,000 members and chapters worldwide. We provide scholarships, mentorships, job placement, business development and workshops. We firmly believe in “You Can’t Be What You Can’t See” and feature a monthly profile on Women in Audio as well as monthly bloggers that share their experiences and expertise.

The EQL directory

The EQL Directory powered by SoundGirls in partnership with Spotify is a useful tool when people say “they want to hire women but can’t find any.”  SoundGirls and Spotify encourage their members to enter their information and share the directory with their peers and colleagues.

The EQL Directory features resources from initiatives and organizations like the Audio Engineering Society, Beatz By Girlz, Equalizer Project, female:pressure, Gender Amplified, Girls Make Beats, Instituto Criar, Secret Genius, shesaid.so, SoundGirls in Mexico, The 7% Series, Upfront Producer Network, Yorkshire Sound Women Network, and the Women’s Audio Mission.

[We] face the myth that there are not very many women or non-conforming people working in audio, and because of this people don’t even bother to look. The EQL Directory proves that this is not true. – Karrie Keyes, co-founder of SoundGirls and Pearl Jam’s long-time sound engineer

From Spotify the Director of Social Impact, Kerry Steib said:

SoundGirls already had this global directory of women in audio and production, and we came together to help them make it more beautiful, more useful, and more visible within the industry. We know that increasing equity for women in these fields is a complex problem to solve. We have to work with great partners across the industry and come together to create solutions.

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