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Executive Director

Emily M. Murase, PhD

Executive DirectorWelcome to the San Francisco Department on the Status of Women! In 1998, San Francisco became the first city in the world to adopt a local ordinance reflecting the principles of the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). In the intervening years, the Department has used the CEDAW human rights framework to guide our work and we have developed a number of innovative programs and tools to advance women's human rights. We have conducted gender analysis of City Departments as well as City Commissions and Boards to identify areas of gender inequality and make recommendations. Our flagship grants program, the Violence Against Women Intervention & Prevention Program, funds 24 community-based agencies to address domestic violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking.

Emily M. Murase, PhD


Learn, Improve + Inspire Through the Gender Equality Challenge

Introducing the Gender Equality Challenge, a new project of the Gender Equality Principles Initiative. The Initiative is part of the ongoing global effort to link women’s empowerment and corporate policies.

Take part in the Gender Equality Challenge:

  • Learn about the seven Gender Equality Principles and example model practices
  • Choose a model practice with proven results that exemplifies one of the principles
  • Commit to sharing it with other Bay Area companies

This program is open to companies with an office in one of the following Bay Area counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, or Sonoma. No fee required for participation.

Benefits of Participation

Your model practice will be:

  • Featured on the model practices page of the Gender Equality Principles Initiative website ( with a link to company website
  • Highlighted at a Gender Equality Principles Initiative roundtable/forum with a presentation opportunity
  • Recognized by the City and County of San Francisco
  • Included in marketing materials and publications produced by the Department on the Status of Women




    Our Work

    Our Work

    The Department primarily focuses on 4 program areas: Women's Human Rights, Violence Against Women, Women in the Workplace, and Girls.

    Equality in the Workplace

    Equality in the Workplace

    Find important information on Gender Equality Principles Initiative, Family-Friendly Workplaces, Resources for Women in Work, and more.

    Stay Informed

    Stay Informed

    Sign up to stay informed on meetings, events and other important information.

    About the Commission

    The Commission on the Status of Women (COSW) is a commission of the City and County of San Francisco whose purpose is to ensure women and girls equal economic, social, political and educational opportunities throughout the city.

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