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Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW) has been founded in Geneva in 1930. In 1947 it was accredited as an advisory organisation in UN and in 1977 as a consultative institution in the Council of Europe.

By now more than a quarter of million of women from 108 countries all over the world have joined the organisation. BPW Europe, the Europen representative body of the federation, incorporates more than 33,000 members from 31 European countries. The priority objective of the federation is to contribute to obtaining equal opportunities, roles and status of women as well as respectful attitude towards women in every field of social, economical or family life and to achieve a more numerous relative importance of women in organisations making decisions with worldwide impact. The joint programmes of BPW Europe are directed at solving the problems caused by unemployment, at developing the skills of entrepeneurship and leadership and at creating equal opportunities of education or training for everybody.

The Non-profit Making Association BPW Estonia (EENA) has been founded in 1992 with the purpose of encouraging business and professional women and women as leaders to cooperate with each other, change ideas and opinions and to carry out joint programmes together with keeping alive the tradition of club activities. BPW Estonia was admitted into the International Federation in 1993. There are 6 clubs within BPW Estonia with more than 130 members totally.

BPW Estonia and its individual members together with the other associations of women were the ones who launched the discussion concerning the wages for mothers in order to ensure the equality between men and women. A number of members of BPW Estonia have also taken an active part in the projects started by the Round Table of Estonian Women in order to protect the rights of women in labour matters and in cases of domestic violence.

BPW Estronia has participated in different projects initiated by the Eurointegration Bureau and by the European Union Information Secretariat of the State Chancellery. An educational project called “Women into Public Life” has been implemented lately.

It has been a long tradition to single out the Women of the Year of Estonia and to attribute the title in a festive manner to a socially and professionally outstanding woman of Estonia enhancing thus the importance of the role of active women in the life of our country.

The Women of the Year

1993 Daisy Järva – managing director of the Tallinntuur Travel Agency, President of the Estonian Association of Travel Agencies
1994 Heidi-Ingrid Maaroos – professor of Medicine at the University of Tartu
1995 Aino Valgma – promoter of regional studies and local development
1996 Annely Ojastu – winner of Paraolympic Games
1997 Ivi Eenmaa – Mayor of Tallinn
1998 Liis Klaar – director of the Tallinn office of the Foundation of Tallinn Pediatric Hospital
1999 Tiia Loitme – conductor of the Girl’s Choir Ellerhein
2000 Zanna Botvinkina – member of the board of Kehra Pulp and Paper Factory Horizon, chairwoman of Kehra Town Council
2001 Leida Kikka – executive director of Samelin Ltd.
2002 Merike Martinson – chairman of the board of the Foundation of Tallinn Pediatric Hospital, at present Vice Mayor of Tallinn
2003 Birute Klaas – dean of the Faculty of Philosophy of Tartu University
2004 Marika Mikelsaar – professor of microbiology of Tartu University
2005 Signe Ratso – director of the Directory of Foreign Trade of the European Comission
2006 Maie Orav – teacher of folk dance of recognized authority, organizer of the first Folk Dance Festival of men
2007 Anna Levandi – coach of figure skating
2008 Kauksi Ülle – writer and stage director
2009 Aet Maatee – manager of Estonian Song and Dance Celebration Foundation
2010 Kristina Šmigun-Vähi – cross-country skier
2011 Tea Varrak – founder of two private business schools, chairman of board of Enterprise Estonia
2012 Maike Parve – Chief Physician of Childbirth Center of the Central Hospital of Western-Tallinn
2013 Katri Raik – Director of Tartu University Narva Colledge
2014 Reet Aus – fashion designer
2015 Marina Kaljurand – an Estonian diplomat and current Minister for Foreign Affairs
2016 Helve Särgava – Saidafarm OÜ, vice manager
2017 Mari-Liis Lill – actress and producer
2018 Eva Truuverk – “Let’s Do It”, leader

The Women of the Years
1993 Salme Reek – actress
1997 Marju Lauristin – professor at the University of Tartu
2007 Ita Ever – actress
2012 Siiri Oviir – politician
2015 Ingrid Rüütel – folklorist and philologist
2017 Reet Laja – Estonian Women’s Studies and Resource Center, chairman of the board

Young Woman Entrepreneur
2011 Eva-Maria Õunapuu – founder of Estonian nature cosmetics brand Joik
2012 Katriin Jüriska – Manager of NGO Re-use Center
2013 Darja Saar – Executive director of Foundation ENTRUM
2014 Kriss Soonik-Käärmann – underwear designer
2015 Kristi Täht – Owner and CEO at Marat OÜ, Qualitex AS, Katarina OÜ
2016 Kristi Saare – founder of the Women’s Investment Club
2017 Kristel Kruustük – founder and CEO of Testlio
2018 Ann Runnel, Reverse Resources, founder


BPW Estonia was founded on 11 November 1992 with the aim of contributing toward the development of women entrepreneurs and managers, and professional women and establishment of their mutually benefitial contacts.

BPW Estonia’s founding members:

Leena Blum, Anne Hallika, Pille Heideman, Karin Juhat, Hille Karm, Liis Klaar, Hilja Kuusk, Maie Oblikas, Riina Kütt, Sirje Küttis, Reet Laja, Katrin Leis, Malle Lind, Maila Mikk, Marge Mägi, Tiiu Ots, Vaike Protten, Helve Remmelgas, Helle Tiismus, Eve Uljas, Virve Viljus, Anne Väin, Ludmilla Tsirel

Annual events
Annual meeting
Nomination of the Woman of the Year on 11 November
International trade fair Woman ’95… (1995-1999)

Events in the local clubs
Interclub meetings
Company presentations
Cultural programmes
Winter games
Spring hat party

Training programmes
Integration of women into public life
How to start and run your own business
Participation in trade fairs
Language training

Participation in major events
4th Women’s Conference in Beijing in 1995 (BPW Estonia’s president)
Congresses of BPW International
BPW European congresses
Kvinnor Kan trade fair

Relations with sister organisations

Post & Bank

MTÜ BPW Estonia, reg no 80036176

Postal address: Ristiku 10, Tallinn, Estonia

Bank: AS SEB Pank
Tornimäe 2, Tallinn, Estonia
IBAN: EE851010052032732009


Tallinn club
president: Merike Paasalu

Tartu club
president: Tea Tassa

Rannamõisa club
president: Siiri Martin

Business club
president: Annely Aer

Pärnu club
president: Kadrin Karner

Võru club
president: Egle Davõdov



Ester Eomois



Maie Mängel




Lilian Promet