It’s said that leaders are made, not born. That’s certainly true of the Biden family. Although Joe Biden is in the spotlight as the 46th President of the United States, his three siblings are all leaders in their own right, too. And Joe’s sister Valerie Biden Owens says that forging of strong leadership began in childhood with deep family values.
Valerie joins host Maureen Metcalf to discuss her book, Growing Up Biden. She shares the challenges she faced breaking gender barriers, the importance (and elusiveness) of confidence, and growing women as leaders. She'll also dive into the ingrained lessons and expectations that have been the guiding principles of the Biden’s close-knit, Irish American, Catholic family. These stories and insights speak deeply to the impact of family and generational leadership on political and personal ethos.
It's a revealing conversation unfolding the many ways our parents’ guidance shapes us as leaders of our own families, organizations…and nations.
Valerie Biden Owens is the first woman in U.S. history to have run a presidential campaign — that of her brother, Joseph R. Biden, Jr. She also led his seven straight U.S. Senate victories and has been his principal surrogate on the campaign trail.
Valerie is Chair of the Biden Institute at the University of Delaware and a partner at Owens Patrick Leadership Seminars. Valerie sits on the Advisory Board of the Beau Biden Foundation for the Protection of Children. For 20 years, when Valerie was not managing or advising President Biden’s campaigns, she served as Executive Vice President of Joe Slade White & Co., a media consulting firm. She has worked extensively with Women’s Campaign International, teaching women how to organize and develop communication and political skills. Valerie has also served on the National Board of the Women’s Leadership Forum of the Democratic National Committee and has served for 35 years on the board of The Ministry of Caring.
In 2015, Valerie delivered the keynote address for Harvard Law School’s International Women’s Day celebration and was one of 50 women presented with the law school’s international “Women Inspiring Change” award. In 2021, she was named to the Forbes 50 Over 50 Women Who Are Leading the Way in Impact list.
She is a graduate of the University of Delaware. She is married to Jack Owens, an attorney and businessman. They have three children.