State Network Structure

​The ACE Women’s Network was established through an initial grant by the Carnegie Foundation. The proposal was to create state planning boards with representation reflecting the states' higher education structure. Under the initial proposal, a four-part model for leading a state network was established:

  • A state chair, generally a woman holding a position at a college or university, serves as the liaison between the state network, ACE, and the WNEC.
  • A planning committee (now often referred to as a planning or executive board), composed of individuals who serve as leaders for the state network, creates programs and strategies to identify and advance women into senior leadership positions within the state’s colleges and universities.
  • Presidential sponsors advise the planning committee and state chair and support the efforts of the state network.
  • Institutional representatives serve as advocates for the interests of women’s leadership development and advancement in higher education at their institutions.

The state networks are supported nationally by a dedicated staff at ACE and by the ACE Women’s Network Executive Council (WNEC). The WNEC advises ACE on issues pertaining to the ACE Women's Network and women's leadership in higher education. The WNEC supports the state networks by serving as liaisons to the state network chairs and by providing guidance and advice for strengthening state planning boards and the overall vitality of the state network.

Women's Network Framework Overview
Expectations of State Networks

As affiliates of the ACE Women’s Network, each state network abides by a set of general expectations, which are outlined here.

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State Network Leadership Roles

This section presents insight on key positions associated with successful and sustainable state network operations.

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ACE Women's Network Leadership Conference

Each year, ACE hosts the Women's Network Leadership Conference in conjunction with the ACE Annual Meeting. This year's conference will be virtual.

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ACE Women's Network Directory

ACE encourages faculty and women administrators from across the country to join and participate in their state network events. ​

State Networks Directory

Moving the Needle Initiative

Through the Moving the Needle: Advancing Women in Higher Education Leadership initiative, ACE aims to bring national awareness to the importance of achieving gender parity and diversity in higher education leadership.

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