Have you ever heard a girlfriend lament about how hard it is to make friends as an adult? Well, I have and it can be heartbreaking, the fact is, once your safety net of friends from college spreads out and your childhood friends have moved on, you start to look around and wonder where you are going to find like-minded women in your city. Or, maybe you have a solid circle, you’re just looking to add a few more to your Girl Gang. Well, I have good news, I found the holy grail in Pittsburgh, GRLPWRPGH. I chatted with the founder, my now friend, Amanda Faye Cowan, about her dreams of such a group of women and how she went from wanting that group, to creating it.
What made you start GRLPWRPGH?
I was in search for my lady gang, and couldn’t what I was looking for in Pittsburgh – so I created it! There are so many great networking and women-run groups in Pittsburgh, but I felt that some of them were cliquey or stuffy, and that just isn’t my jam. So I decided to host a GRLPWRPGH happy hour that was open to everyone who identified as a woman who worked in any industry imaginable.
What is your favorite part about leading this group?
Meeting women from all walks of life, and making some truly great friends. I have met some of my now closest friends in this quick year, and it’s all because of this group. I also love the sense of community, and the joy women get after attending an event and meeting someone new.
Favorite event so far?
Q3 Membership Dinner at Bay41. I think these quarterly dinners are going to be my favorite events. Standing in the back of the venue and looking at the long table of 60+ women from different backgrounds, ethnicity, age groups and industries sitting and conversing was so, so special to me. I cried (but I’m an emotional person and always cry).
Event most looking forward to?
GALSGIVING! For our Q4 Membership Dinner we are doing “galsgiving” – like friendsgiving but with your ladies. We are encouraging all members to bring a dish that reflects their own personal traditions and backgrounds, which I think will add to a great celebration of women coming together for a nice meal.
Favorite part about Pittsburgh?
COMMUNITY! I love that we are a big city with a small town feel. Pittsburgh is such a small world, and I love when we come together for a great cause.
Fun fact we may not know about you.
I’d like to think my claim to fame is cheerleading in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Hahaha!
What do you do for self care, when running a business and a home and a group like this?
A long bath, face masks, a weekend spent laying low with never-ending Bravo, or a solo trip to Target. #noshame
What do you want your daughter to know as she grows up in this world?
She. Can. Do. ANYTHING. I want her to know that she has a voice, and to not be afraid to use it (she already does). And finally, be kind to everyone, be open to those who are different than you, and don’t be afraid to ask questions.
GRLPWRPGH is great because not only are you surrounded by powerhouse women, but you also get educated and encouraged at the different events. I love the push for community and growth, especially on days like the Social Media Workshop where Amanda brought in 4 different speakers (kelclight, elizabethcraigphotography, ladyhoodjourney, and listenlucy), all in different industries in the city, to share their thoughts on Social Media, growing your business/empire, and carving out your own niche in the mad world of the internet.
But, most importantly, I am thankful for this group because it has given me lasting friendships. That feeling of walking into an event and knowing that when you walk in, your “girls” will be there is worth any amount.
So, is this group a good fit for you? Well, if you love building community, drinking champs, an excuse to get together with your girlfriends, and tightening the fibers of a community of powerhouse women in Pittsburgh, then this place is for you. I love that this group is open to women of every color, size, ethnicity, religion, occupation, and background #strongertogether.
In Q4, we have had multiple happy hours, a social media workshop, pop-up shops, a self-love workshop, a finance and goal setting workshop, networking opportunities, galsgiving/member dinner, a head shot workshop, and holiday events such as wreath-making and a holiday party to finish out the year.
So, what are you waiting for? Q1 coming at you live soon, don’t miss it. Find all info here: GRLPWRPGH.
Special thank you to Amanda for sharing her heart in this interview and for having the vision and the drive to start this girl gang, I appreciate you.
“May you go everywhere and wear it all.”
*All photos are mine, taken at the various GRLPWRPGH events this year.