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


SEL and Why is it Important?

Social and Emotional Learning are core life skills for success!


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

(click on the image to the right to get a better view)


GR line with star


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


GR line with star

Our Statistics:


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:  Through our social media, speaking engagements and T shirts we spread the importance of empowering and educating girls at a young age.

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

GR line with star

Our 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 Patton has a calling and a passion to empower and advance women and girls. She has been in the coaching and training industry working with women leaders since 2001.  Along her journey she realized that if we truly want to advance women… we must start when they are teenagers. So she cofounded The Girls Rule Foundation (GRF) with 3 friends in 2008 with the goal to make a difference for girls in three areas: self-esteem skills, leadership skills and financial literacy skills.  She took over leadership of GRF in 2013 and she focused on building the curriculum for our 4 programs: a mentor program, a leadership afterschool program, a leadership summer camp and a mother-daughter conference. Her passion is for girls to know their valuable place in the world as leaders and have the skills sets to thrive and succeed. “Youth development is so important especially today! Programs like ours help girls with the social, emotional and leadership skills they need to thrive as young women and become our next generation of leaders in any industry or role they pursue.”

Dena is a best-selling author, speaker, and has been in the coaching and training industry working with women leaders since 2001. She is the author of The Greatness Game, and $1 of each book gets donated to Girls Rule Foundation.



GR line with star

Our Team

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: read our wish list or help us fundraise in simple ways. 


Read about our programs here.