151: Cassie Abel, Women Led Wednesday

“The goal is really to support these women-led brands so that they can grow because there’s also massive inequities in funding. I mean, these women-led brands are more apt to welcome women returning from time at home back into the workforce when the time comes for them to return. It’s super important.”

– Cassie Abel


This week on Channel Mastery, I’m pleased to introduce you to Cassie Abel, who is spearheading Women Led Wednesday, an online shopping event taking place on November 25th, 2020. This annual event joins together 400 women-founded brands across multiple industries and is a solution to try and keep the acceleration going on developing women in leadership.

As part of Channel Mastery’s justice, diversity, equity and inclusion series, we are elated to offer a platform here on the podcast that helps people who may need more visibility and elevate their voices and their missions. 

Whether we realize it or not, along with the pandemic and recession, we also have another crisis moment to keep a close eye on and work to avoid together. We’ve seen a high percentage of women leaving the workforce through 2020. Cassie is leading by example with Women Led Wednesday by supporting and encouraging us to support women founded brands. 

Join me in celebrating women by visiting www.womenledwednesday.com and through the collective purchasing power uplift the women-founded businesses featured on their site.

Channel Mastery & Wild Rye Giveaway:

We partnered with Wild Rye and some of our favorite brands – Gregory Packs, Tailwind Nutrition and Balega – on a FREE giveaway for a ladies bike kit valued at more than $250. Sign up for the Channel Mastery newsletter today through November 25 and you will be entered to win! For more information, visit www.ChannelMastery.com/bike-kit-giveaway


Cassie Abel

Based in Sun Valley, Idaho, Cassie Abel is a long-time outdoor industry professional who has committed her career to elevating women in the outdoors and in business.  Abel is the co-founder & CEO of Wild Rye, a women’s mountain apparel brand dedicated to crafting beautiful and technical apparel that fits, inspires confidence and welcomes more women into the outdoors. In addition to Wild Rye, Abel founded Women-Led Wednesday, a purpose-driven shopping holiday that occurs annually with the goal of encouraging the general public to vote for women in leadership with their dollars. The holiday occurs annually the day before Thanksgiving – November 25, 2020 – and to support the holiday, Women-Led Wednesday hosts a robust women-led brand directory that features well over 400 women-led brands across all industries.

Prior to Wild Rye and Women-Led Wednesday, Cassie founded White Cloud Communication, a boutique PR & Marketing consulting business in addition to holding roles at Smith Optics, Visa, in finance and as a division one NCAA lacrosse coach.   

 When not working away to bring equity to women in the outdoors and in business, you can find Cassie playing in the mountains of Idaho (most frequently on bikes and skis) with her husband, Mike, baby, Sawyer, and fur-baby, Kirby.


Women-Owned Businesses, Women Led Wednesday, Women in Leadership, Women Leaving the Workforce in 2020, Women in Business, Wild-Rye


“Honestly, it was just over two years ago. I was talking with my now former business partner and we were trying to figure out when we should launch our holiday sales. We felt that Black Friday was too much about consumerism and mass consumption and that didn’t feel right for our brand, as we’re dedicated to sustainability and shopping ethically. Cyber Monday didn’t feel right. Just felt like we were going to get lost. Small Business Saturday felt more like a brick and mortar holiday. I was talking to Katie and I was like, “There’s got to be something for women-led brands. There’s so much momentum behind women in leadership. It’s all over the media there has to be something out there.” I started Googling around and nothing. Absolutely nothing. …I launched Women-Led Wednesday, I guess it was 2018, and just threw an email to anyone I could think of who either founded a women-led brand or might know of other women-led brands.”

“Now we have a really robust brand directory that enables brands to tell their brand story right there on the Women-Led Wednesday website. Images, links, website, founder, bio, all that information that you want to review to learn about a brand. I’ve gotten ahead of myself and not really spoken about the actual holiday. The holiday occurs on November 25th, 2020. It’s the day before Thanksgiving, every year. The idea is to elevate women in leadership through collective purchasing power, so encouraging the public to vote for women with their dollars.”

“Yeah. I mean, I’ve been reading like anyone else… more women are leaving the workforce than ever before. After the last five or so years where people have worked tirelessly to get more women and just C-suites and you know, to become board chairs, that’s all going to be erased with all these women leaving the workforce. This means there are going to be fewer women in leadership. There are going to be fewer future female leaders….2020 has been a blow to our society for many reasons, but it’s a really big blow to women as they’re leaving the workforce for a number of reasons. A lot of it has to do with family responsibilities and homeschooling and extra pressures that have come from the pandemic and everything else that 2020 has offered us.”

“The goal is really to support these women-led brands so that they can grow because there’s also massive inequities in funding. I mean, these women-led brands are more apt to welcome women returning from time at home back into the workforce when the time comes for them to return. It’s super important.”




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