Publication Date: April 6, 2021
CNN news anchor Brooke Baldwin explores the phenomenon of “huddling,” when women lean on one another—in politics, Hollywood, activism, the arts, sports, and everyday friendships—to provide each other support, empowerment, inspiration, and the strength to solve problems or enact meaningful change. Whether they are facing adversity (like workplace inequity or a global pandemic) or organizing to make the world a better place, women are a highly potent resource for one another.
Through a mix of journalism and personal narrative, Baldwin takes readers beyond the big headline-making huddles from recent years (such as the Women’s March, #MeToo, Times Up, and the record number of women running for public office) and embeds herself in groups of women of all ages, races, religions and socio-economic backgrounds who are banding together in America. HUDDLE explores several stories including:
- The benefits of all-girls learning environments, such as Karlie Kloss’s Kode with Klossy and Reese Witherspoon’s Filmmaker Lab for Girls in which young women are given the freedom to make mistakes, and find their confidence.
- The tactics employed by huddles of women who work in male-dominated industries including a group of US veterans/Democratic Congresswomen, a huddle of African-American judges in Harris County, Texas, and an all-female writers room in Hollywood.
- The wisdom of huddling from trusted pioneers such as Gloria Steinem, Billie Jean King, and Madeleine Albright as well as contemporary trailblazers like Stacey Abrams and Ava DuVernay.
- How professionals such as Chef Dominique Crenn and sports agent Lindsay Colas use their success to amplify other women in their fields.
- The ways huddles of women are dedicated to making seismic change, including a look at Indigenous women saving the planet, the women who founded Black Lives Matter, the mothers fighting for sensible gun laws, America’s favorite female athletes (Megan Rapinoe, Hilary Knight, and Sue Bird to name a few) agitating for equal pay, and female teachers rallying to improve their working conditions.
- The bond between women who practice self-care and trauma healing together, including the women who courageously survived sexual abuse, and the women who heal together in The Class and GirlTrek.
- The ways women are becoming more intentional about the life-saving power of friendship, including the bonds between military wives, new moms, and nurses getting through the time of Covid.
Throughout her examination of this fascinating huddle phenomenon, Baldwin learns about the periods of huddle ‘droughts” in America, as well as the ways that Black women have been huddling for centuries. She also uncovers how huddling can be the “secret sauce” that makes many things possible for women: success in the workplace, effective grassroots change, confidence in girlhood, and a better physical and mental health profile in adulthood. Along the way, Baldwin takes readers through her own personal journey of growing up in the South and climbing the ladder of a male-dominated industry. Like so many women in her field, she encountered many sharp elbows on her career path, but became an early believer in adding more seats to the table and huddling with other women for strength and solidarity. In the process of writing HUDDLE, Baldwin learns that this seemingly new phenomenon is actually something women have been doing for generations—a quiet, collective power she learns to unlock in her transformation from journalist to champion for women.
BROOKE BALDWIN is a veteran journalist and Peabody Award finalist who has anchored the 2–4 p.m. (ET) edition of CNN Newsroom for more than a decade. She has often been sent into the field to cover the biggest breaking stories in the US and around the world. She played a major role in anchoring coverage of the Obama and Trump administrations and has also reported on stories from Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. She joined CNN in 2008, and viewers have come to know Baldwin for her versatility, authenticity, and humanity at the news desk. As the creator and host of CNN’s digital series American Woman, she has dedicated the latest chapter of her career to shining a light on trailblazing women in politics and culture. Baldwin graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2001 with a BA in journalism and Spanish. She lives in Manhattan with her husband, James, and their pug, Pugsley. Huddle is her first book.