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Women in Games Exhibit Featured at Strong Museum

Several influential women spoke at the opening, including Amy Hennig, Bonnie Ross, Brenda Laurel, Dona Bailey, Sheri Graner Ray, Susan Jaekel, and Victoria Van Voorhis.
Megan Gaiser, former president and CEO of Her Interactive and co-creator of the “Nancy Drew” game franchise also spoke at the opening of the exhibit.

“While the many systems designed with only half the population in mind are ripe for redesign, it’s really not possible to create an inclusive reality on top of such a toxic one,” Gaiser said. “It must be re-imagined. Imagine a game industry where men and women feel safe enough to bring their entire selves to truly collaborate.

“We are the technology we’ve been waiting for,” she added. “We upgrade computers when they’re not operating at their maximum capacity. Why wouldn’t we upgrade our own, human operating system.”

Jen MacLean, executive director of the International Game Developers Association, commented on the importance of representation of women in games, as well as representation for nonwhite and LGBTQ+ characters.

“This realization didn’t dawn on me until I started playing games with my daughters,” MacLean said. Her daughters choose to play as girls in games, when possible.

“Fast forward, we have amazing heroines in games,” she said. “Where we are today is not where we could be, or should be. We have so very far to go.”

The Women in Games exhibit will run throughout spring 2019, and also features women’s contributions to non-electronic games, such as board games.

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