Tanya Hristova is the mayor of the beautiful Bulgarian city Gabrovo. She thinks that the principle of equal opportunities for both women and men is one of the fundamental pillars of democracy. According to her, being a mayor means not only to be a professional but above all to have the ability to find a common goal in the different and sometimes contradictory desires of people.

Being a Mayor means not only to be a professional but above all to have the ability to find a common goal in the different and also contradictory desires of people. Being a woman Mayor is a duty and a huge responsibility. We present to you Tanya Hristova, the Mayor of Gabrovo city. Her responsibility is to serve to those that trust her. To her, the real challenge is to prove yourself every day, to uphold your principles and to overcome difficulties of any kind. Her personal life as a wife and a mother is often at the expense of the responsibility and commitment to be a Мayor 24 hours a day. Most of the weekends are busy for her, so she is grateful her family for their understanding, patience and fair criticism. She is a firm believer that innovation and technology are not seen as abstracts but as tools for solving social problems. There isn’t a rule she follows in order to balance because probably the ability to successfully combine your personal and professional life is just a wisdom. According to her, the principle of equal opportunities for women and men is one of the fundamental pillars of democracy. She thinks that it is necessary to work at all levels to protect and implement it. In her opinion, the problem of gender inequality is still relevant in some places. There is a positive trend that gender has long been irrelevant in many typically “male” or “female” occupations. She believes that attention to the details, the ability to prioritize, to mobilize in critical moments, the strong intuition, combined with the absence of unnecessary fears and doubts in decision-making, the ability to communicate and social sensitivity, often give additional benefits and help women more than their appearance.

Tanya Hristova, Mayor of Gabrovo City

Favourite clothes?

A dress and each piece of clothing that emphasizes the lovely feminine nature.

High heels or flat shoes?

Both – depends on the situation.

Which is THE thing you never go out without? 

А phone.

Favourite lipstick colour?

Pinkish-red.

Which is the feminine quality/duty that you don’t possess?

I can’t think of one.

Which cause would you support/ Are you currently supporting?

The cause I’ve been supporting for years and will continue to support is called Gabrovo.

Have you ever faced challenges in your career regarding the fact that you are a woman? 

The principle of equal opportunities for women and men is one of the fundamental pillars of democracy and it is necessary to work at all levels to protect and implement it. The real challenge, no matter what your gender is, is to prove yourself every day, to stand up for principles, to overcome difficulties of any kind, and when you are a Mayor you have to serve the people who have given you their trust.

Do you know how many women work in your position?

I know many women working in my position, both in оur country and abroad, but I can’t give the exact number.

“The principle of equal opportunities for women and men is one of the fundamental pillars of democracy and it is necessary to work at all levels to protect and implement it.” 

Do you think that the problem with gender inequality still exists in Bulgaria and globally?

Unfortunately, there are still latitudes where it is relevant. However, there is a positive trend that gender has long been irrelevant in many typically male or female occupations.

Do you think that a woman’s appearance and charm affect her professional success? (example: does it make communication easier?)

They probably do, but that’s not the point. Provoked by your question, I will admit that a woman, by nature, has the ability to balance and be more adaptable. Attention to detail, the ability to prioritize, to mobilize in critical moments, strong intuition combined with the absence of unnecessary fears and doubts in decision-making, the ability to communicate and social sensitivity, often give additional benefits, and help women more than their appearance.

 Read More Inspiring Stories for Women in Tech in WRTech here.

 What policies do you follow regarding encouraging diversity?

 I prefer a balance, where women rights are equal to men rights.

How do you get along with your men colleagues? Do they treat you differently?

You should ask them. Personally, I don’t feel different attitude.

How do you balance your work life with your personal life? Is there any rule that you follow?

 It is difficult for me to strike this important balance. Very often my personal life of a wife and a mother is at the expense of the responsibility and commitment of being Mayor 24 hours a day. I can barely steal a few days off in the summer and winter. Most weekends are working weekends, I am often in my office or I visit sites with colleagues. I take this opportunity to thank my family for their understanding, patience and fair criticism. I don’t follow any rules in order to balance. Probably the ability to successfully combine your personal and professional life is just life wisdom.

Which sources would you recommend to us? (podcasts, webpages, influencers, youtubers, etc.)

Unfortunately, due to lack of time, I can’t say much. But I would recommend to your audience to follow the local information channels.

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