Megan Rohleder | YWCA Women of Excellence
Kansas Historical Society
Megan Rohleder is Senior Archivist for Public Services at the Kansas Historical Society. She moved to Topeka 2 ½ years ago, fell in love with the city and its people, and quickly dedicated herself to community service. She is a leader in Forge Young Professionals, the Shawnee County Historical Society, Shawnee County Democrats, and the Kansas Law Enforcement Memorial Foundation.
TK: What inspires you?
MEGAN: I am inspired by people’s stories. I think that has to do with being a military kid and growing up around the world. As an archivist for the Kansas Historical Society, my job is to preserve the stories of Kansans to ensure they will be around for future generations. The more that people have access to and are allowed a say in how those stories are collected and preserved, the more connection they have to their own heritage or legacy. That is pretty powerful stuff.
TK: What advice do you have for others?
MEGAN: Own your journey, even if it doesn’t look like what you thought it would or what others think it should. It’s probably a bit cliché, but when I started to appreciate the hard work and the diverse experiences that got me to where I am today, everything just seemed to start falling into place. I am incredibly thankful for that winding path.
TK: What is the greatest lesson you have learned on your journey?
MEGAN: Empathy is not a character flaw. I think sometimes there is a perception of leadership that requires people to distance themselves from other people’s emotional journey. I think a true leader will try their best to understand or relate to others not just in the successful moments, but also in the challenging ones as well.
The YWCA is on a mission to empower women at all stages in their careers. Diversity in leadership is particularly vital to our vibrant business community in the Greater Topeka Area.
The YWCA is celebrating 31 years of recognizing Women of Excellence in our community with the theme “Dare to be Powerful.” We dare to be powerful, despite whatever obstacles may present themselves along the way.
“When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.”
- Audre Lorde