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News > Alumni News > “Being part of Dame Allan’s Girls’ School meant that I never questioned my power as a woman"

“Being part of Dame Allan’s Girls’ School meant that I never questioned my power as a woman"

To mark International Women's Day (8 March) we spoke to inspiring Allanian Gail Gallie, who has championed gender equality through her work with the UN, and ongoing social change initiatives. 
7 Mar 2024
Alumni News
Above: Allanian Gail Gallie
Above: Allanian Gail Gallie

Gail Gallie has a background in marketing and advertising and has spanned a range of industries, from Marketing Director at the BBC - where she rejuvenated Radio 1 and helped name CBeebies  - to founding and running her own ad agency. 

She has a passion for philanthropy and a strong sense of social purpose. In 2015, she joined Richard Curtis (of Love Actually and Notting Hill fame)  to found Project Everyone, the campaign unit that launched the Global Goals on behalf of the United Nations. In 2019, Gail also launched Project 17, a new venture focused on promoting the goals within the investment sector.

Overall, my time at Dame Allan’s was a very happy one. I am terrible with names, but I liked all of my teachers. Two inspirational women in particular stand out: Miss Houlton, who without question enabled and inspired me to get to Oxford to study French, and Mrs Reed, who inspired a lifelong love of music. In fact, both music and French were favourite activities of mine, but I also took part ‘around the edges’ in hockey, drama productions, and the choir. 

I am sure that being part of Dame Allan’s Girls’ School meant that I never questioned my power or rights as a woman. I found the setting and also being surrounded by young women a very nurturing and empowering situation. 

After graduation, I worked within the marketing and advertising field, originally in agency roles before branching out. I was Marketing Director at the BBC for 10 years, before founding my own agency. I adored my time at the BBC, where we were able to bring dance music to Glastonbury with Radio 1, but am equally delighted to say we named CBeebies!

In 2015, I then decided to pursue a more cause-driven career, which is when I founded Project Everyone with Richard (Curtis). I’m so proud that we launched the Global Goals on behalf of the United Nations and helped drive global awareness of these goals, as well as working with governments and big business to ensure continued progress towards the goals being achieved.

I can’t take individual credit for any success as everything is so much a team effort, and I’m lucky that I have explored many different areas in my career. 

Having worked on behalf of the United Nations - Global Goal five is to ‘Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls’ - I have so much respect for the work they do to raise awareness of issues facing women worldwide, through initiatives such as International Women’s Day. 

It’s so important to take time to reflect upon our careers and journeys as women, to spark conversations around opportunities, gender and work. I do think it is interesting that I have wound up being a campaigner - which seems to unite a lot of traditionally “female” strengths, such as resilience, problem solving and communicating.

If I could give some advice to current pupils at Dame Allan’s Girls’ Schools, I would say go for it, of course! Dream as high as you can, you are the person in charge of our own future, don’t limit your imagination and go change the world. 

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