The issue is not who will let me; it is who will deter me. Women have proven to be an epitome of hope, resilience, and absolute will power. Despite the gender prejudice and poverty, women have remarkably stood strong and left a legacy to our children. They have embraced unity and risen against racism.
Follow along as we delve into eight women leaders who have left a mark on the world.
1. Oprah Winfrey
Oprah is a media mogul, as well as a self-made billionaire. Oprah was born in 1954 in Mississippi in a humble background. Her grandmother, Mae Lee, raised her.
Oprah suffered sexual abuse at a tender age. She also experienced a miscarriage at only 14 years old. These adversities did not hold her back. Oprah rose above her limitations and ventured into media, airing her first show, The Oprah Winfrey, in 1986. This show broke all weighing scales and ran a fantastic 4562 episodes.
Oprah is also an author of several literal works, including the Oprah Winfrey Magazine. Oprah also succeeded in being the first black woman to bag the Cecil B. DeMille award in 2018. According to Forbes, Oprah ranks at 91 with a net worth $2.6B. Aside from amassing wealth, Oprah Winfrey is a renowned philanthropist. She has presided over 400 scholarships to needy students at Morehouse College.
2. Michelle Obama
Women and family empowerment have been the driving force in Michelle Obama. Michelle is undoubtedly one of the best first lady leaders who have shed mediocrity. She has faced sexism and racial prejudice, as well as insane conspiracies. When they go low, we go high, and have always been her maxim.
Michelle is an icon to look up to, especially in her fight into childhood obesity. Michelle advocated for proper nutrition and health care among children. She initiated the Let’s Move! Campaign to shed light on her efforts. As a result, the Let’s Move! The initiative increased access to healthier and nutritious food in the country.
Michelle has been keen on health and nutrition around schools as well as physical fitness.
3. Wangari Maathai
Wangari Maathai is a phenomenon African woman whose name shall be sung among generations. Wangari Maathai was a passionate and uncowed environmentalist. Her love for nature, trees to be specific, is worth every documentation.
She was the mind behind the Green Belt Movement – 1977, aimed to reforest her country and conserve nature.
Wangari was the utmost African woman to garner the Nobel Peace Prize Laureate in 2004. She was also the first woman to receive a Ph.D. degree in East and Central Africa.
4. Hillary Clinton
Hillary is a legendary politician who has left her rivals trembling. Hillary Clinton served as the US Senator and secretary of the state during Obama’s tenure. Hillary was an ardent lawyer who served in high-profile legislations. Hillary Clinton received recognition as one of the 100 most influential lawyers in 1988-1991.
Hillary Clinton was keen on the health care reform that bred the 1993 Health Security Act. She was also passionate about women and children. Hillary zealously championed the Violence against Women Act in 1994. In her term as the Secretary of State, Hillary lobbied for the Trans-Pacific Trade Partnership. This partnership would promote the US economy much.
5. Abigail Johnson
Abigail Johnson is a self-made billionaire American woman. The 58-year-old Abigail is the CEO of Fidelity Investments, a global business mammoth. Abigail took over the company at a very low financial ranking and has overseen its growth into the present-day empire.
According to Forbes, Abigail ranks at 124 with an estimated $15B net worth.
Abigail was the first woman to serve in the Financial Services Forum (FSF). Abigail is a star not only in the States but also globally. She is an embodiment of women’s resilience and leadership. She had undoubtedly proven that women could successfully run a trillion-dollar empire.
6. Michelle Bachelet
Michelle Bachelet was the first Chile female president. Michelle successfully built her name in politics independently of her husband. She was the Chilean president in 2006-2010 and 2014-2018. Michelle suffered disturbing moments in her early life. She survived torture after her father was involved in the Augusto Pinochet Coup.
Michelle also suffered a divorce as a mother of three. These setbacks did not deter her from her vision. In the office, Michelle scrapped off the chauvinistic male rule. She selected women to half her cabinet. She also advocated for women-favorable policies and pension reforms.
7. Serena Williams
A star of the racket. Serena Williams has brought a paradigm shift in the world of tennis. At a tender age, Serena developed interest and passion for tennis. She keenly held on to her dreams, achieving those powerful and elusive serves at the court.
Serena is one revered tennis player that painlessly sends her rivals to shame. She has bagged in more than 39 Grand Slam titles. Worth noting, Serena Williams is the only player to garner singles six times in three out of the four Grand Slam championships.
8. Mary Barra
Mary Barra is the first woman CEO of a global automobile firm. She is the Executive Officer of General Motors. Mary Barra hailed from humble roots with her father as a dye maker. Poverty did not deter her from accomplishing her goals. She studies electrical engineering, which paved the way for her successful career life.
Mary Barra was recognized as the most powerful woman in 2015. She also maintained the Forbes listing as the Most powerful woman consecutively thrice.
Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen. These eight women rose above their limitations and left a mark on the world for our children to look up to. Gone are the days of male chauvinism and women discrimination. It is arguably true that women leaders are a personification of courage, inspiration, and excellence. We need to believe in them.