The Governor’s Equal Pay Summit will convene in Bozeman March 31-April 1, 2014 at Montana State University. National pay equity advocate Lilly Ledbetter will kick off the summit at 6:30 p.m. on March 31st, with keynote speakers Governor Steve Bullock and First Lady Lisa Bullock following on April 1st.
April 1st events will center around nine panels featuring close to 50 Montana entrepreneurs, elected officials, business leaders, educators, and activists dedicated to advancing and expanding career opportunities for women.

“In Montana, we believe that everyone should receive a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work. That’s why I created the Equal Pay for Equal Work Task Force,” said Bullock. “Through this summit, we’ll not only raise awareness about this important issue, but we’ll also bring leaders together from all walks of life to focus on solutions to closing the gender pay gap.”

The summit is a part of the Governor’s Equal Pay for Equal Work Task Force, which was established in June of 2013. The Task Force aims to address pay inequity in the state.

In Montana, women earn only 67 percent of what men earn for the same job, which is lower than the national average of 77 percent. The state ranks 40th in the nation for pay equity.

“MSU is honored to host and cosponsor the Equal Pay Summit,” said MSU President Waded Cruzado. “This is an incredible opportunity to gather leaders, learn from their experiences, and set a path forward where Montana women share in the economic success of our state.”

“Closing Montana’s wage gap is one of the top priorities of women college students who are looking forward to upcoming career opportunities,” said ASMSU President Lindsay Murdock. “Hosting Lilly Ledbetter and the Equal Pay Summit proves to these young women that Montana values their hard work and contributions to the state.”

Participation at the Equal Pay Summit is free and open to the public.