The Top 10 Influential Women?
Not So Fast! You Just Can’t Stop at 10!
As it is Women’s History Month in the United States, it has been suggested that I compile a list of the top 10 inspirational female leaders or a list of 10 inspiring female pioneers who are making history, or the 10 Most Influential Women of History. But, I must say that I am hard pressed to narrow down any list like that to just 10 women. There have been and are so many amazing women doing so many amazing things. Just walk into any school and be awestruck at the dedication of the teachers, most of whom are women and you will see amazing women in action. And the women I might pick to be the most inspiring might completely overlook the ones you would pick. There are just so many, and so here is a totally random sampling of amazing and influential women, inspirational female leaders in politics, science, the arts from around the world. I apologise to all the many I have left off this list but there really are just too many to list in this blog. Please also note that some of these women are no longer with us but they continue to influence and inspire the world:
Ruby Bridges - At 6 she was the first black child to integrate her elementary school
Nancy Pelosi - Arguably the most effective Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives
Christine LaGarde - (France) President of the European Central Bank
Jacinda Ardern - Recently retired President of New Zealand
Eleanor Roosevelt - Wife of Pres. Franklin Roosevelt and tireless advocate for human rights
Sojourner Truth - Former American slave and advocate for abolition and human rights
Wangari Maathai - Kenyan, environmental political activist, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate
Ida B. Wells - American journalist, educator, one of the founders of the NAACP
Harriet Tubman - Escaped slavery and worked in the Underground Railroad in the U.S.
Madeleine Albright - First female U.S. Secretary of State,
Queen Elizabeth II - Longest reigning British monarch, 1952-2022
Jane Goodall - British, conservationist and leading expert on chimpanzees.
Marie Curie - American, Physicist, Chemist, first to win Nobel Prize twice and in 2 categories
Rita Moreno - Puerto Rican, Triple Threat, Presidential Medal of Freedom and EGOT winner
Joan of Arc - Patron Saint of France. Medieval military leader.
Helen Keller - American deaf and blind, author, disability rights advocate, political activist
Oprah Winfrey - American global media leader, philanthropist, producer and actress
Malala Yousafzai - Pakistani winner of Nobel Peace Prize, 17. Advocates education for girls
Katharine Graham - American Publisher of the Washington Post
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf - Africa’s 1st Woman President (Liberia), Nobel Peace Prize winner
Margaret Bourke-White - American Pioneering photojournalist
Dorothea Lange - American, documentary photographer and photojournalist
Hillary Clinton - First Lady, Secretary of State, U.S. Senator
Indira Gandhi - Third Prime Minister of India. Only female Prime Minister of India.
Gloria Steinem - American, writer, lecturer, political activist, and feminist organiser.
Betty Ford - Wife of U.S. Pres. Gerry Ford. Women’s issues, addiction treatment advocate
Margaret Hamilton - American computer scientist, systems engineer, and business owner
Cleopatra - Queen of the Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt, and its last active ruler.
Margaret Sanger - American birth control activist, sex educator, writer, and nurse
Greta Thunberg - Swedish environmental activist
Aretha Franklin - American, The Queen of Soul music
Emily Kauʻiomakaweliokauaionalaniokamanookalanipo Kukahiwa Zuttermeister - Hawaiian culture preservationist
Chien-Shiung Wu - Chinese born Wu was a leader in experimental physics
Dolores Huerta - American, co-founder of the United Farm Workers Association
Anita Baker - American dancer and singer extraordinaire
Eugenie Clark - The Shark Lady, American ichthyologist
Susan B. Anthony - American social reformer, women's rights and suffrage activist
Sacagawea - Shoshone woman, Native American, guided Lewis and Clark expedition.
Toni Morrison - American author and professor
Isadora Duncan - American, pioneer of modern contemporary dance
Coco Chanel - French fashion designer and businesswoman
Virginia Woolf - English writer, modernist 20th-century authors
Anna Magdalena Bach - German, wife of Johann Sebastien Bach, composer and musician
Pocahontas - Native American daughter of Powhatan the powerful chief of the Powhatans
Maria Callas - American-born Greek soprano opera singer
Queen Latifa - American rapper, actress, and singer
Dolly Parton - American singer-songwriter, actress, philanthropist, and businesswoman
Martha Graham - American modern dancer and choreographer
Rigoberta Menchú - (Guatemala) indigenous, women’s rights, Nobel Peace Prize Winner
I know each of us personally knows an inspiring woman - your mother, grandmother, your sister, teacher, mentor, or your best friend. And they are mostly unsung heroes and we know they have left at least one story of their amazing generosity, wisdom, kindness, and strength in your mind. As International Women’s Day is upon us, this is an ideal time to honor that woman by sharing with the world what an amazing person she is and how much she has meant to your life. Can you imagine your life without her? What did she teach you? How did she make you stronger or wiser or help you to see your own beauty and strength? How did she bring beauty or love or brilliance into this world? It is never a bad thing to share with the world how someone has inspired you. History Chip is here to provide the platform for you to honor that wonderful woman with your story about her.