Our Purpose

Girls Rule Foundation is an Arizona based 501c3 organization that is a leader in empowerment and leadership programs for girls ages 12-18.

Our mission is to offer online and offline programs that focus on empowering girls in 3 key areas: self-esteem skills, leadership skills and financial/career skills


What is SEL and Why is it Important?

Social and Emotional Learning are core life skills for success!
(click on the image to the right to get a better view)


The Core Competencies:

Self-awareness: Know your strengths and limitations, with a well-grounded sense of confidence, optimism, and a “growth mindset.”

Self-management: Effectively manage stress, control impulses, and motivate yourself to set and achieve goals.

Social awareness: Understand the perspectives of others and empathize with them, including those from diverse backgrounds and cultures.

Relationship skills: Communicate clearly, listen well, cooperate with others, resist inappropriate social pressure, negotiate conflict constructively, and seek and offer help when needed.

Responsible decision-making: Make constructive choices about personal behavior and social interactions based on ethical standards, safety, and social norms.

Leadership skills: our 12 leadership principles that help girls lead themselves, their actions, their choices and lead others confidently.


SEL leads to better academic outcomes and improved behavior:

  • 27% more students improved their academic performance
  • 24% more students improved their emotional well-being and social behavior
  • Studies show decreased dropout rates, school and classroom behavior issues, drug use, teen pregnancy, mental health problems, and criminal behavior
  • Impact Is Long-Term and Global/Can Help Reduce Poverty/Can help improve Economic Development/Improves Lifetime Goals/ long-term success of all students in today’s economy


GR line with star


Our 12 Leadership Principles that we teach in our 4 programs:


GR line with star



We all know that self-esteem cannot be medicated, and we also know that when girls are equipped with social, emotional, and leadership skill sets that they can build strong self-esteem and powerful skill sets to better navigate their teen years to become successful adults.

Our youth will inherit complex social and economic problems in the future. We must equip them to be able to have the communication, leadership, self-esteem and problem-solving skills to confront these issues with leadership. At Girls Rule we address the root causes under these 7 derailers that affect every girl and can “derail” many girls.

We want girls to become resilient, not a statistic. Let’s talk about the statistics of girls today. We are battling the highest suicide rate in girls in 40 years along with many other staggering statistics like teen pregnancy (7100 teen pregnancies in AZ in 2016 and 1 million nationwide in 2016). Read more statistics here. Additionally, suicide experts say electronic and social media addiction is one of the main causes behind the rise in suicides and lower self-esteem.


GR line with star

Our Why:


GR line with star

Our 5 Empowerment & Leadership Programs:

  1. dreamLABs After-School Club:
    A 12-meeting curriculum led after-school that you can open anywhere & start anytime with your group of girls.
  2. Wings to Fly Summer Camp :
    A week-long leadership & entrepreneurship summer camp for middle and high school girls in Arizona.
  3. Shine Brightly Quarterly Summit:
    A quarterly 1/2 day workshop based in SEL skills and leadership skills for moms and girls in Phoenix, AZ.
  4. The Brilliant, Beautiful & Bold Role Model Awards & Mentoring Program:
    A nomination-based program that awards 6 girls who win a year-long leadership mentoring program
  5. Join our #GirlsChangeTheWorld movement:

GR line with star


  • Lower suicide rates
  • Lower bullying experiences
  • Lower number of abusive teen relationships
  • Raise the number of girls to college
  • Raise the number of girls to leadership roles
  • Raise the number of girls trained in empowerment and leadership skills



inspire-a-girl-change-the-wordThe 10 Core Values for running our organization – We are committed to:

  1. Having team members, vendors, and employees who know WHY our organization exists and are crusaders for the cause
  2. Clean communication – in all we do we lead by example in our words and actions. No drama, no negativity, no gossip. Ever.
  3. Creating a fun and empowering environment in everything we do for our clients and our teams.
  4. Leading with integrity and intention – we plan our work and work our plan.
  5. Intentionally making wise and healthy choices that further the mission and efforts of the organization, not ourselves.
  6. Creating a ‘we’ community of girls and women who encourage each other’s success within the organization and outside.
  7. Working and leading from a place of love, focus, fearlessness, and empowerment.
  8. Having a financially well-running organization and make wise decisions to accomplish that.
  9. Being brilliant, beautiful and bold role models and advocates in the world for all girls and women.
  10. Teamwork to make the dream work and ask for help and collaboration when needed.

GR line with star


Our Co-founder & CEO – Dena Patton

Dena is a best-selling author, speaker, professional coach and expert on greatness and human potential. Her mission has been to advance women in the world through her work, which in 2009 grew to include girls when her and 3 friends founded Girls Rule.

One of her favorite things about Girls Rule is that it not only makes a big difference for girls, but it has also become a platform for many other men and women to serve/give back in significant ways through the volunteer teams. Girls Rule Foundation is possible because of our people: 75 volunteers, 4 committees and 2 Boards. She is the author of The Greatness Game, and $1 of each book gets donated to Girls Rule.


GR line with star


Our Tribe:
We are made up of men and women who stand for girls and women and want to see them thrive. We are made up of financial supporters, sponsors, and committee members who help our organization grow to impact more girls to reach their greatest potential. It takes a village. You can get involved a few different ways: by attending one of our 4 programs, be on our volunteer team, apply to be on a committee or board, read our wish list or help us fundraise in simple ways. 

Read about our programs here.