Mars Launches #HereToBeHeard Campaign to Advance Action on Gender Equality

  • New crowdsourcing initiative aims to elevate voices of women everywhere to help shape more inclusive society where women can reach their full potential 
  • Board Member Victoria Mars calls on global business to “listen and step up,” says “we have more to do” 
  • Emmy-award winning actress and host Tamera Mowry-Housley leads roster of global influencers inviting women to use their voice to galvanize change
  • Global campaign supports Goal Five of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals

McLean, VA (January 26, 2021) — Mars, Incorporated today launched #HereToBeHeard, a new global crowdsourcing campaign that elevates the voices of women from all intersections – including race, age, sexuality, religion and ability – to help shape a more inclusive business environment and create a world where all women can thrive.  

As part of the company’s Full Potential platform for action on gender equity in its workplaces, sourcing communities, and the marketplace, #HereToBeHeard asks women everywhere: “What needs to change so more women can reach their full potential?” The responses will inform the concrete actions Mars will take – both within its value chain and in broader society – to close the gender opportunity gap.

Victoria Mars, Mars Board Member and ambassador of Mars’ Full Potential program: “Women have played a powerful role in our history and leadership at Mars. But we have more to do. We’re striving to empower more women within our workplace, and across our extended value chain.  

“The magnitude and urgency of gender inequality in society demands more action. If global business doesn't listen and step up now, then when? Business can have an outsized impact on driving change at scale. At Mars we’re seizing this opportunity to expand the conversation and drive action. The #HereToBeHeard movement is about ensuring that all women’s voices have a chance to be heard and translating what we hear into impact plans that advance gender equality.”

To kick off the conversation, Emmy-award winning actress and host, Tamera Mowry-Housley joins a roster of inspiring women influencers including Poppy Jamie, Hani Sidow, Helen Wu & Kellie Gerardi who will lend their experiences and invite women to share their voices and vision at

Emmy-award winning actress and host Tamera Mowry-Housley: “It's unacceptable that so many women continue to face disproportionate barriers and roadblocks at work, at home and in their daily lives. If we're really going to ensure every woman reaches her full potential, we have to consider the diversity of our backgrounds, our talents and our experiences. All our voices deserve to be heard. 

“I think it's brave for a major corporation like Mars to say we’ve not done enough and that it's time to listen up. That's why I'm excited to help Mars elevate the voices of many of the women who go unheard.” 

Currently, women make up 51 percent of the world's population and have the potential to contribute $28 trillion to the global GDP, and yet so often their voices go unheard. Even before the COVID-19 crisis, the United Nations estimated it would take more than a century to close the gender opportunity gap. Now, the pandemic has set progress for gender equality back by 25 years. Its impact has been particularly devastating for women in minority groups who for far too long have been overlooked in the conversation. 

The initial phase of #HeretoBeHeard, where women’s voices will be collected, will run through March; after which the submissions will be analyzed by the Oxford Future of Marketing Initiative (FOMI) at Oxford University’s Saïd Business School. The results will be shared with the world in a study by Oxford this summer and will inform the action plans of Mars’ Full Potential platform, including policies Mars can implement and advocate for in its commitment to unlock opportunities for women. 

Launched last year, the Full Potential program aims to drive gender equality for all through a range of actions. By putting inclusivity and diversity at the heart of its efforts, Mars has:

  • Achieved gender pay equity across its workforce of 133,000 Associates, more than half of whom are women.
  • Progressed to 43 percent gender-balance across business leadership teams, with a target of having 100% gender balance across leadership teams.  
  • Expanded its partnership with humanitarian aid agency CARE to empower 50,000 people in cocoa sourcing communities, the primary beneficiaries of which are women. 
  • Been working with the Geena Davis Institute and UNStereotype Alliance to eliminate gender bias and stereotypes in its advertising. 
  • Embraced transparency in articulating the company’s gender commitments and progress, which can be found here.

We want to hear your voice. Visit to learn more, complete the short survey and continue the conversation with #HereToBeHeard. 

The #HereToBeHeard Hub can also be found in the following translations:

#HereToBeHeard Quotes for Attribution

CEO of CARE, Michelle Nunn: “In our work with Mars in the cocoa-growing communities in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana, we see first-hand how the voices of women are suppressed. Many face poor access to education, a lack of opportunity to gain dignified work and in some cases violence. At CARE we strongly believe that women should be given the simple right to voice their opinion on how to make the world a better place. That is why we are very proud to lend our voice to Mars’ #HereToBeHeard campaign.”

Madeline Di Nonno, Chief Executive Officer of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media: “We are proud to support #HereToBeHeard, an important global campaign which aims to give women and girls the opportunity to have their say. #SeeitBeit!” 

Professor Andrew Stephen, Associate Dean of Research, L’Oréal Professor of Marketing and Director of FOMI at Oxford Saïd: “We’re delighted to welcome Mars to the Oxford Future of Marketing Initiative, and thrilled to be working with them on #HereToBeHeard. The work will help to address elements of gender inequality in business and will inform tools and actions to help address these imbalances. We hope that these findings will become part of a meaningful and evergreen resource for the public and other communities in business and beyond.”

About #HereToBeHeard
#HereToBeHeard is a global campaign from Mars, Incorporated which drives change on gender inequality, in support of Goal Five of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. It is part of Full Potential, Mars’ platform for action on gender which aims to empower women and close the gender gap in the places we work, the communities where we source our ingredients and in the way we create our advertising.   For more information on the Full Potential platform and the #HereToBeHeard survey, visit and

About Mars, Incorporated
For more than a century, Mars, Incorporated has been driven by the belief that the world we want tomorrow starts with how we do business today. This idea is at the center of who we have always been as a global, family-owned business. Today, Mars is transforming, innovating and evolving in ways that affirm our commitment to making a positive impact on the world around us.
Across our diverse and expanding portfolio of confectionery, food, and petcare products and services, we employ 133,000 dedicated Associates who are all moving in the same direction: forward. With $40 billion in annual sales, we produce some of the world’s best-loved brands including DOVE®, EXTRA®, M&M’s®, MILKY WAY®, SNICKERS®, TWIX®, ORBIT®, PEDIGREE®, ROYAL CANIN®, SKITTLES®, BEN’S ORIGINAL™, WHISKAS®, COCOAVIA®, and 5™; and take care of half of the world’s pets through our pet health services AniCura, Banfield Pet Hospitals™, BluePearl®, Linnaeus, Pet Partners™, and VCA™.

We know we can only be truly successful if our partners and the communities in which we operate prosper as well. The Mars Five Principles – Quality, Responsibility, Mutuality, Efficiency and Freedom – inspire our Associates to take action every day to help create a world tomorrow in which the planet, its people and pets can thrive.
For more information about Mars, please visit Join us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube.

Mars, Incorporated
Caroline Judge