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Art, photographs, stories, and biographies of women who are awesome in one way or another. - Awesome Women (@awesome-women)
Shenative is a socially driven handbag @awesome-women

SheNative is a socially driven handbag & accessories company dedicated to empowering Indigenous women, positively impacting the way they are represented in the media, and changing how they are perceived by the rest of the world.

Devon Fiddler, Founder & Chief Changemaker of SheNative is an Indigenous woman of the Waterhen Lake First Nation in Saskatchewan, Canada. She founded SheNative with a mission to inspire Native Women and girls to see themselves differently.

“I grew up a shy, timid Native girl, not having the best childhood experience with so much external negativity due to who I was, right down to the colour of my skin. I’ve since realized that I didn’t have to be who I was expected to be, and I could be whoever I wanted! So, I did it!”

Devon recognized a common problem based on her own personal experiences and those of her friends, family and other Native women around her. She recognized the need for change, and started looking for a way to help other woman and girls, to tell them that it’s okay to be amazing and pursue their passions. And so, SheNative was born. Devon recognized that changing the way Native women perceive themselves will start a chain reaction of empowerment, encouraging these women to provoke a positive change in public perceptions.

SheNative is currently at $9,700 (65% of their $15,000 goal) with 7 days left in the campaign. Jump on board now and help them make it!

Reclaimingthelatinatag ruth ocumárez is @awesome-women


Ruth Ocumárez  is Dominican former beauty queen, actress and model. Born and raised in Santo Domingo, Ocumárez became a celebrity in her nation by becoming the first woman of predominantly African heritage to represent the Dominican Republic in the Miss Universe pageant

Albinwonderland smalllindsay click here to @awesome-women




I am incredibly proud to present a project that I worked very hard on that has finally premiered on the internet! Over a year ago, back when I still worked at Hero4Hire Animation as the art director/lead design, I was given the reigns to direct a big project for the Geena Davis Institute on Gender and Media. Its a wonderful foundation that fights for the interest of one of the things very closest to my heart; that being the portrayal of girls and women in animated media, as well as for equality of roles for women working within animation. Things are slowly changing (Rebecca Sugar being the first women to get her own show on CN!!!), but animation is still largely dominated by men, especially in roles of power like direction and creators. This is often reflected in the female characters that arise from this disparity, that can often be cookie cut outs, token in nature, or at worst just there for the pure reason of sassy eye candy. That’s not to say there aren’t great female characters in media, but the numbers are actually quite staggering. Even being really in tune with the issue myself I was blown clear away by the actual numbers when I attended the institutes conference in NYC last year. I’d recommend taking a look at the research found here, as it’s really eye opening.

So I got to meet Geena Davis. I’d never met a celebrity before, let alone sat down with one over tea to show her my drawings and pitch book for the short I had made for her foundation. It was a little nerve wracking as I sat there in the small NYC cafe waiting for her arrival, only made more so when she walked in and was the tallest person ever. Let me describe to you the inner monologue of someone who has a stunningly beautiful, 20 foot tall movie star walking at them:


Needless to say Geena is a rad lady and super nice. Also I managed to not make any “There’s no crying in baseball” jokes despite how my terrible brain kept a constant feed of them supplied to me throughout our ensuing conversation.

The project went through a few stages before the finished product. Initially it was drafted to be a more story based short. I’d written a 14 page script which even still I think is pretty funny/informative, about traveling through the various animated stereotypes of girls (and boys too!). Maybe someday that will see the light of day, but it ended up a studio decision in interest of time/funds to go with a more infographic style short piece instead. Which is fine, because flat art is my bread and butter baby. Aw yiss gimmie dat illustrator program.

Anyway before I get too far off and write a novel, I am super proud to present this piece for the foundation and It was a joy to work on, and a privledge to be given a writing, directing, and design position on it given the content. I am flattered that Hero4Hire and Geena put that much salt in me.

This project, of course, would be nothing without the others who made it possible. Adrian Garcia, whom I worked with on storyboards, also made the animatics and did most of the effects animation you see here that makes everything look so 3-D and beautiful. He’s such a pro. Dan Flynn and Mike Nordstrom who did all the beautiful character animation. Evan Sussman who did all the post work that really made this thing look special. And Mari Kidder! My super sweet intern turned junior design assistant who is going to graduate college this year! She came in for a week long whirlwind and saved our butts for which I will be forever grateful, haha. Oh man we would have died without her help aaa aaaa.

But I digress, This project was my baby. I would be honored if everyone took a peek at our little film, and even more honored if it helped people think a little harder about the issues it brings to the spotlight.

Thank you!

Linds, your animation was incredible. So incredible, it brought me to tears. I’m so proud of you, and this project seems so positive and amazing. 

Sacheen littlefeather is a native american woman @awesome-women

Sacheen Littlefeather is a Native American woman who is a civil rights activist. She is known for dressing in Apache dress and presented a speech on behalf of actor Marlon Brando, for his performance in The Godfather, when he boycotted the 45th Academy Awards ceremony on March 27, 1973, in protest of the treatment of Native Americans by the film industry.

Littlefeather’s heritage includes Apache, Yaqui, Pueblo, and European ancestry. On her official website, she states her father was from the White Mountain Apache and Yaqui tribes from Arizona and that “Cruz” is her father’s recognized tribe name. A member of Indians of All Tribes, Littlefeather had participated in the occupation of Alcatraz Island by American Indians’ rights activists in 1969.

She represented Brando and his boycott of the Best Actor Oscar for The Godfather as a way to protest the ongoing siege at Wounded Knee, and Hollywood’s and television’s misrepresentation of American Indians. Brando had written a 15-page speech for Littlefeather to give at the ceremony, but when the producer met her backstage he threatened to physically remove her or have her arrested if she spoke on stage for more than 60 seconds. Her on-stage comments were therefore improvised. She then went backstage and read the entire speech to the press.

Rosemarie reed is an award winning producer of @awesome-women

Rosemarie Reed is an award-winning producer of documentary films. And she travels the world. When she is not in New York or Berlin, the two places she likes to call home, she can be found in Paris, London, Moscow, or Sydney in pursuit of her films. Most of her work portrays women in science, politics, history and the arts, some famous, some forgotten. Her goal is to document the achievements, plights, and legacies of women often invisible to the larger world.

Rear admiral grace murray hopper december 9 @awesome-women

Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper (December 9, 1906 – January 1, 1992) was an American computer scientist and United States Navy officer. A pioneer in the field, she was one of the first programmers of the Harvard Mark I computer, and developed the first compiler for a computer programming language. She conceptualized the idea of machine-independent programming languages, which led to the development of COBOL, one of the first modern programming languages. She is credited with popularizing the term “debugging” for fixing computer glitches (motivated by an actual moth removed from the computer). Owing to the breadth of her accomplishments and her naval rank, she is sometimes referred to as “Amazing Grace.” The U.S. Navy destroyer USS Hopper (DDG-70) is named for her, as was the Cray XE6 “Hopper” supercomputer at NERSC.

Hopper graduated first in her class in 1944, and was assigned to the Bureau of Ships Computation Project at Harvard University as a lieutenant, junior grade. She served on the Mark I computer programming staff headed by Howard H. Aiken. Hopper and Aiken coauthored three papers on the Mark I, also known as the Automatic Sequence Controlled Calculator. Hopper’s request to transfer to the regular Navy at the end of the war was declined due to her age (38). She continued to serve in the Navy Reserve. Hopper remained at the Harvard Computation Lab until 1949, turning down a full professorship at Vassar in favor of working as a research fellow under a Navy contract at Harvard.

In 1952 she had an operational compiler. “Nobody believed that,” she said. “I had a running compiler and nobody would touch it. They told me computers could only do arithmetic.”

In 1954 Hopper was named the company’s first director of automatic programming, and her department released some of the first compiler-based programming languages, including ARITH-MATIC, MATH-MATIC and FLOW-MATIC.

In the spring of 1959 a two day conference known as the CODASYL brought together computer experts from industry and government. Hopper served as the technical consultant to the committee, and many of her former employees served on the short-term committee that defined the new language COBOL. The new language extended Hopper’s FLOW-MATIC language with some ideas from the IBM equivalent, COMTRAN. Hopper’s belief that programs should be written in a language that was close to English rather than in machine code or languages close to machine code (such as assembly language) was captured in the new business language, and COBOL would go on to be the most ubiquitous business language to date.

“The most important thing I’ve accomplished, other than building the compiler, is training young people. They come to me, you know, and say, “Do you think we can do this?” I say, “Try it.” And I back ‘em up. They need that. I keep track of them as they get older and I stir ‘em up at intervals so they don’t forget to take chances.”

Bearer of the pioneer award from the electronic @awesome-women

Bearer of the Pioneer Award from the Electronic Frontier Foundation and the Augusta Ada Lovelace Award from the Association of Women in Computing, Anita Borg is undoubtedly the computer scientist who contributed the most to the cause of introduction of women to the field of computer technologies. Highly respected as a professional, she makes her greatest mark as a mentor of young women in a career that has traditionally been considered a man’s field.

In 1987, after attending a technical conference where she was one of a handful of women scientists present, Dr. Borg starts Systers, an electronic mailing list exclusively for female engineers on subjects related to technology. Since then her passion to study computers transforms into an aspiration for using computers to link people. The Systers list grows to include more than 2,500 women in 38 different countries. It is run by Anita herself until 2000.

In 1994, Borg co-founds the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women, a technical conference held every two years that focuses on the career and research interests of women in information and computer sciences.

Anita leaves Digital Equipment’s Western Research Laboratory in 1997 and joins the Xerox Corporation’s Palo Alto Research Center. Soon after starting her new job, she founds the Institute for Women and Technology (I.W.T.), a nonprofit organization which main goal is to encourage young women to enter the technology industry. In 2003, after Dr. Borg dies, the institute’s name is changed into The Anita Borg Institute for Women and Technology. The organization is highly supported by major companies in the computer branch. It receives $150,000 in funding from Sun Microsystems and Xerox, as well as resources and personnel from Lotus Software (now a division of IBM), Carnegie Mellon University, and Boston University.

Since its foundation, the ABI has continued to grow each year. In 2007 it more than doubled the number of its sponsors to 14 and its programs reached women its 23 countries worldwide.

In her professional career as a computer scientist and as a mentor of young women in technology, Dr. Borg receives many awards, including Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Pioneer Award and the Augusta Ada Lovelace Award from the Association of Women in Computing. In 1998, she is inducted into the Hall of Fame of Women in Technology International. In 1999, US President Bill Clinton appoints her to the Presidential Commission on the Advancement of Women and Minorities in Science, Engineering, and Technology; she is charged with recommending strategies to the nation for increasing the breadth of participation fields for women. In 2002, Anita is awarded the 8th Annual Heinz Award for Technology, the Economy and Employment.

Anita Borg dies of brain cancer in 2003. To honor her contribution to the integration of women in the field of computer and information technology, in 2004, Google establishes the Google Anita Borg Scholarship, through which they hope to continue her mission to encourage women to excel in computing and technology and become active leaders in the branch.

“Women will change the corporation more than we expect.”

“I want all of these folks connected. We’re all doing too much reinventing of the wheel, … The Internet enables us to share the ideas we have without having to create another hierarchy. We hope that these two projects will come together and create a structure of continued involvement.”

Rachel fuller brown november 23 1898 january @awesome-women

Rachel Fuller Brown (November 23, 1898 – January 14, 1980) was a chemist best known for her long-distance collaboration with microbiologist Elizabeth Lee Hazen in developing the first useful antifungal antibiotic, Nystatin, while doing research for the Division of Laboratories and Research of the New York State Department of Health. She was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 1994.

Nystatin, still produced today under various trade names, not only cures a variety of potentially devastating fungal infections, but has also been used to combat Dutch Elm disease in trees and to restore artwork damaged by water and mold.

Penicillin had been discovered in 1928, and in the years that followed, antibiotics were increasingly used to fight bacterial illness. However, one side effect was that these antibiotics allowed for a rapid growth of fungus, which could lead to sore mouths or upset stomachs. Other fungal diseases without cures including infections attacking the central nervous system, athlete’s foot, and ring worms were also a major problem during this time. However, fungal diseases were not well understood at this time, and there were no antifungal medications safe for human use. At this time, people knew of microorganisms called actinomycetes that lived in soil and were known to produce antibiotics, some of which killed fungus. However, these antibiotics also proved fatal in tests involving lab mice and thus could not be put into production.

In her New York City laboratory, Hazen cultured organisms found in soil samples and tested their ability to fight against two fungi: Cryptococcus neoformans, a fungus responsible for the chronic disease cryptococcosis, which affects lungs, skin, and other body parts like the central nervous system, and Candida albicans, which causes candidiasis, which can be minor in some cases (e.g. a vaginal yeast infection), or a serious infection in patients treated with broad-spectrum antibiotics. If she found such promising antifungal activity in a particular culture, she would mail it to Brown in a mason jar.

At her end, Brown isolated the active agent in the culture, or the ingredient in the soil sample that could potentially be used to cure these fungal diseases. This required meticulous labor as well as a great deal of patience and paintstaking attention to detail. After isolating the active ingredient, Brown would return the sample to Hazen in New York, where it was retested against the two fungi. If effective, the toxicity was then evaluated in animals.

Nystatin was also the first antifungal antibiotic to be safe and effective in treating human diseases. Not only did it cure many serious fungal infections of the skin, mouth, throat, and intestinal tract, but it could also be combined with antibacterial drugs to balance their side effects.

Royalties for Nystatin totaled $13.4 million. As Brown and Hazen did not want any of the money for themselves, the philanthropic Research Corporation used half for grants to further scientific research and the other half to support what became known as the Brown-Hazen Fund.

Both Brown and Hazen received many awards for their collaborative work, the first major prize being the Quibb Award in Chemotherapy in 1955. Brown was also elected fellow of the New York Academy of Sciences in 1957. On Brown’s retirement in 1968, she received the Distinguished Service Award of the New York Department of Health. In 1972, she was also given the Rhoda Benham Award of the Medical Mycological Society of the Americas. Brown and Hazen were the first women ever to receive, in 1975, the American Institute of Chemists’ Chemical Pioneer Award.

Gertrude belle elion january 23 1918 february @awesome-women

Gertrude Belle Elion (January 23, 1918 – February 21, 1999)[1] was an American biochemist and pharmacologist, and a 1988 recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. Working alone as well as with George H. Hitchings, Elion developed a multitude of new drugs, using innovative research methods that would later lead to the development of the AIDS drug AZT.[2]

Rather than relying on trial-and-error, Elion and Hitchings used the differences in biochemistry between normal human cells and pathogens (disease-causing agents) to design drugs that could kill or inhibit the reproduction of particular pathogens without harming the host cells.

Elion’s inventions include:

In 1988 Elion received the Nobel Prize in Medicine, together with Hitchings and Sir James Black. Other awards include the National Medal of Science (1991)[5] and the Lemelson-MIT Lifetime Achievement Award (1997). In 1991 she became the first woman to be inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame.[6]

In Tom Brokaw’s Greatest Generation, there is a chapter devoted to her.

“I had no specific bent toward science until my grandfather died of cancer. I decided nobody should suffer that much.”

“The idea was to do research, find new avenues to conquer, new mountains to climb.”

Stephanie louise kwolek born july 31 1923 is an @awesome-women

Stephanie Louise Kwolek (born July 31, 1923) is an American chemist of Polish descent who invented poly-paraphenylene terephtalamide—better known as Kevlar. She was born in the Pittsburgh suburb of New Kensington, Pennsylvania. Kwolek has won numerous awards for her work in polymer chemistry.

Kwolek was born in New Kensington, Pennsylvania, in 1923. Her father, John Kwolek, died when she was ten years old. Kwolek attributes her interest in science to him and an interest in fashion to her mother, Nellie Zajdel Kwolek. In 1946, Kwolek earned a degree in Chemistry from Margaret Morrison Carnegie College of Carnegie Mellon University. Kwolek had planned on becoming a doctor and hoped that she could earn enough money from a temporary job in a chemistry-related field to go to medical school.

While working for DuPont, Kwolek invented Kevlar. In 1964, in anticipation of a gasoline shortage, her group began searching for a lightweight yet strong fiber to be used in tires. The polymers she had been working with at the time formed liquid crystal while in solution, something unique to those polymers at the time. The solution was “cloudy, opalescent upon being stirred, and of low viscosity” and usually was thrown away. However, Kwolek persuaded technician Charles Smullen, who ran the spinneret, to test her solution. She was amazed to find that the new fiber would not break when nylon typically would. Both her supervisor and the laboratory director understood the significance of her discovery and a new field of polymer chemistry quickly arose. By 1971, modern Kevlar was introduced.

In 1986, Kwolek retired as a research associate for DuPont. However, she still consults for DuPont, and also serves on both the National Research Council and the National Academy of Sciences. During her 40 years as a research scientist, she filed and received either 17 or 28 patents. In 1995, she became the fourth woman to be added to the National Inventors Hall of Fame. In 1996, she received the National Medal of Technology, and in 2003, she was added to the National Women’s Hall of Fame. She received the 1997 Perkin Medal from the American Chemical Society, and a 1980 award from the ACS for “Creative Invention”.

Dorothy dietrich is an american stage magician and @awesome-women

Dorothy Dietrich is an American stage magician and escapologist, and the first and only woman to have performed the bullet catch in her mouth. She was also the first woman to perform a straitjacket escape while suspended hundreds of feet in the air from a burning rope. She is the first woman to gain prominence as a female escape artist since the days of Houdini, breaking the glass ceiling for women in the field of escapes. She has been named as one of the top four escape artists in history. Early on as a teenager she already was dubbed as “The First Lady of Magic.” Dietrich, often called the female Houdini, has duplicated many of Houdini’s original escapes, and has gone one step further by doing the Jinxed Bullet Catch Stunt — the one that Houdini backed away from.

She developed what is known as a flash act that included doves, a rabbit, a duck and two poodles. Early on she was considered a “leading dove worker”. She also developed several routines few women had ever attempted. Sawing men in half, escaping from a straitjacket, sleight of hand with coins via the Misers Dream, The Bullet Catch, and levitating audience members. It was her goal to level the playing field between men and women in the field of magic. Until she broke these barriers women were not allowed full membership in such organizations as The Society of American Magicians and London’s Magic Circle, which early on she tried to join. She has pioneered and paved the way for women in the field today.

Dietrich also crusades against those who falsely claim to speak to dead relatives of vulnerable grieving citizens. Early on, Dietrich realized that there were those who would use magic and various deceptive arts to manipulate and even cheat people out of money. So following in the footsteps of famous debunkers who came before her such as Houdini, Milbourne Christopher and James Randi, she takes on such a role where possible.

On September 27, 2011 a group she formed, that came to be known in the media as The Houdini Commandos, secretly replaced the statuary bust at Houdini’s grave site that had been missing due to vandalism for 36 years. Her world famous attraction Scranton’s Houdini Museum that she runs with mystery entertainer Dick Brooks has been asked by both the family of Houdini and the management of the cemetery to take over the upkeep of the grave that has been in disarray for many years due to neglect.

With more than 30 years of assisting non profit @awesome-women

With more than 30 years of assisting non-profit organizations, and a wide-ranging business and government career, Jocelyne Côté-O’Hara is applying her wealth of experience to Ryerson’s Board of Governors. Côté-O’Hara has been a senior executive in the telecom and IT fields for more than two decades. She is a corporate director at MTS Allstream, Xerox Canada and BEST Venture Funds, vice-chair of the UBC-based Network Centre of Excellence in Mathematics and a governor of the Commonwealth Games of Canada.

Earlier in her career, Côté-O’Hara held senior positions with various federal departments, including an executive assignment with Petro Canada International Assistance Corporation, financial analyst with the Treasury Board of Canada and senior staff member to the prime minister. Recently, she was appointed to the RCMP Reform Implementation Council and the Internal Audit Committee of the federal Office of the Privacy Commissioner.

Appointed to the board in 2005, Côté-O’Hara joined Ryerson because she “knew it had dynamic leadership and was experiencing a period of exceptional growth and extensive transformation.” A strong advocate of education, Côté-O’Hara plans to see the university through its next phase of development and engagement with the city.

“Ryerson is a uniquely positioned university both in mandate and in location. It will always have a special character and it’s important to maintain that,” says Côté-O’Hara.

An active member of many community, voluntary and trade organizations, Côté-O’Hara has received the Award for Excellence from the International Association of Business Communicators, a citation for outstanding contribution from the executives of the Public Service of Canada and was named Woman of the Year by Canadian Women in Communications. She is a graduate of the University of Ottawa and the Advanced Management Program of the Harvard Business School.

Côté-O’Hara encourages alumni to stay connected with Ryerson and get involved. She also recommends continuous self-improvement by enrolling in courses offered through The G. Raymond Chang School of Continuing Education. “Lifelong learning can come from the university that gave you your early education,” she says. “Ryerson is constantly evolving and so should you as alumni.”

Deb levine is the visionary leader of the @awesome-women

Deb Levine is the visionary leader of the organization and provides guidance and strategy for the ISIS staff and board. She believes that reducing shame and embarrassment about sexual topics is guaranteed to create future generations of sexually confident, mature adults.

Deb has been working in the field of youth sexual health since 1993, when she discovered the power of the Internet to discuss sensitive topics while creating the immensely popular Go Ask Alice. Her work has been cited in former President Clinton’s Advisory Council Report on Education and the Internet, and in 2009, she was a Pop!Tech Social Innovation Fellow.

In addition to authoring a book, The Joy of Cybersex (Ballantine, 1998), Deb has authored and co-authored numerous professional papers that have been published in journals such as the American Journal of Public Health, Journal of Sexuality Research and Social Policy, and AIDSCare.

She has written sex advice columns for AOL, Time-Warner, Planned Parenthood Federation, and Yahoo! and has been extensively quoted in print in the New York Times,, and The Wall Street Journal. Deb has also enjoyed notoriety on the Fox News Channel’s Bill O'Reilly show, and has been interviewed on National Public Radio.

Deb holds a Bachelor’s of Social Work from Cornell University and a Master’s of Arts in Experiential Education from New York University. She was also a non-degree student at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health.

Recently named one of the 10 filmmakers to watch @awesome-women

Recently named one of the “10 Filmmakers to Watch in 2011” by Independent Magazine, Nancy Schwartzman’s work explores the intersection of sexuality, new media, and the complexities of modern relationships. She is the director and producer of the documentary films The Line (Media Education Foundation, 2009) and xoxosms (May 2011).  She is in development on several projects involving young people and sexuality.

A catalyst for social change and an innovator for women’s rights, she is part of the winning team in the Apps Against Abuse Technology Challenge – a national competition sponsored by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The contest was launched in July 2011 by Vice President Joe Biden and HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. The Circle of 6 app  is free and available for download at the iTunes store.

Using cutting edge media tools for story telling and activism, she is the founder and Executive Director of The Line Campaign, Inc a 501 © 3 dedicated to empowering young leaders to end sexual violence using original media to inspire action. Drawing on her experience in the field of transmedia activism and advocacy, she is a much sought-after speaker, traveling to colleges, conferences, community centers, high schools and non-profits in the Unites States and internationally, including at Yale, Brown, Stanford, M.I.T., Sex::Tech, Media That Matters, and more. Using film, PSAs and workshop discussions, Schwartzman challenges thousands of students to “think twice” and to change normative sexual behavior among college youth.

She is currently the Advocacy Director for Sundance Film Festival winner, “The Invisible War”. An early adopter, in founding, an initiative active from 2003-2005, she combined cutting edge mapping technology with community surveys and business participation. Schwartzman’s work is rooted in a passion for story telling and her activism is rooted in feminism and human rights.

Schwartzman’s first documentary film, The Line (2009), premiered at the International Women’s Film Festival in Tel Aviv and has screened in Toronto, Ankara, Taiwan, Liberia and continues to play nationally around the world. It is a fearless 24-minute documentary that chronicles one woman’s personal journey after she is raped – exploring the line of consent, justice, accountability and today’s media saturated “rape culture”. Launched in tandem with the film, The Line Campaign is an interactive space for dialogue about boundaries and consent. It has been lauded by the Center for Social Media and the Fledgling Fund.

Michaëlle jean pc cc cmm com cd frcpschon born @awesome-women

Michaëlle Jean PC CC CMM COM CD FRCPSC(hon) (born September 6, 1957) is a Canadian journalist and stateswoman who served as Governor General of Canada, the 27th since Canadian Confederation, from 2005 to 2010.

Jean was a refugee[1] from Haiti—coming to Canada in 1968—and was raised in the town of Thetford Mines, Quebec. After receiving a number of university degrees, Jean worked as a journalist and broadcaster for Radio-Canada and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), as well as undertaking charity work, mostly in the field of assisting victims of domestic violence. In 2005, she was appointed governor general by Elizabeth II, Queen of Canada, on the recommendation of Prime Minister Paul Martin, to replace Adrienne Clarkson as vicereine, and she occupied the post until succeeded by David Johnston in 2010. Early in her tenure, comments of hers recorded in some of the film works by her husband, Jean-Daniel Lafond, were construed as supporting Quebec sovereignty and her holding of dual citizenship caused doubt about her loyalties. But Jean denied separatist leanings, renounced her citizenship of France, and eventually became a respected vicereine. Jean is currently the Special Envoy for Haiti for the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization and Chancellor of the University of Ottawa.

Michaelle Jean was sworn in as a member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada on September 26, 2012,[2] giving her the accordant style of The Honourable; however, as a former governor general of Canada, Jean is entitled to be styled for life with the superior form of The Right Honourable.

With her family, Jean fled Haiti to escape Duvalier’s regime, under which Jean’s father was in 1965 arrested and tortured.[6] Jean’s father left for Canada in 1967 and Jean, her mother, and sister, arrived the following year;[6] the family settled together at Thetford Mines, Quebec.[4][7] Jean’s father, however, became increasingly distant and violent, and her parents’ marriage eventually fell apart; she, with her mother and sister, then moved to a basement apartment in the Little Burgundy neighbourhood of Montreal.[6][8]

Jean received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Italian and Hispanic languages and literature from the University of Montreal, and, from 1984 to 1986, taught Italian Studies there, while completing her Master of Arts degree in comparative literature. She then went on with language and literature studies at the University of Florence, the University of Perugia, and the Catholic University of Milan. Besides French and English, Jean is fluent in Spanish, Italian, and Haitian Creole, and can read Portuguese.[7]

Concurrent with her studies between 1979 and 1987, Jean coordinated a study on spousal abuse and worked at a women’s shelter,[6] which paved the way for her establishment of a network of shelters for women and children across Canada. She also involved herself in organizations dedicated to assisting immigrants to Canada obtain the entry they desired, and later worked for Employment and Immigration Canada and at the Conseil des Communautés culturelles du Québec, where Jean began writing about the experiences of immigrant women.[7]

Jean became a reporter, filmmaker, and broadcaster for Radio-Canada in 1988,[3][7] hosting news and affairs programmes such as Actuel, Montréal ce soir, Virages, and Le Point; she was the first person of Caribbean descent to be seen on French television news in Canada.[6] By 2004, Jean was hosting her own show, Michaëlle, while continuing to anchor RDI’s Grands reportages, as well as acting occasionally as anchor of Le Téléjournal.[7]

Jean was Canada’s first governor general of Caribbean origin; the third woman (after Jeanne Sauvé and Adrienne Clarkson); the fourth youngest (after the Marquess of Lorne, who was 33 years old in 1878; the Marquess of Lansdowne, who was 38 years old in 1883; and Edward Schreyer, who was 43 years old in 1979); the fourth former journalist (after Sauvé, Roméo LeBlanc and Clarkson); and the second after Clarkson to not only have neither a political nor military background, but also to be a visible minority, to break the tradition of Canadian-born governors general, and to be in an interracial marriage. Jean was also the first representative of Queen Elizabeth II to have been born during the latter’s reign, and her appointment saw the first child living in Rideau Hall, the official residence, since Schreyer and his young family lived there in the early 1980s.

Summaries of Jean’s time as the Queen’s representative emerged by mid-2010; Jean was regarded as having fulfilled the role in an admirable, though not perfect, fashion. It was noted that she used the office, her speaking abilities, and photogenic nature to Canada’s advantage, promoting freedom, human rights, and urban youth, and to bring attention to socio-economic problems in the country’s north.[6] She was commended for her dedication to the arts, Aboriginal Canadians, the Armed Forces, and her outreach to Haiti following the earthquake there, but critiqued for specific incidents, such as referring to herself as Canada’s head of state and making public comments that skirted the political.[80][81][82] Her ability to personally connect with those she met was also noted, as well as her frequent displays of emotion; commentators dubbed her the empathizer-in-chief.[21]

Gloria evangelina anzaldúa september 26 1942 @awesome-women

Gloria Evangelina Anzaldúa (September 26, 1942 – May 15, 2004) was a scholar of Chicano cultural theory, feminist theory, and Queer theory. She loosely based her most well-known book Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza on her life growing up on the Mexican-Texas border and incorporated her lifelong feelings of social and cultural marginalization into her works.

Her works weave English and Spanish together as one language, an idea stemming from her theory of “borderlands” identity. Her autobiographical essay, “La Prieta,” was published in (mostly) English in This Bridge Called My Back, and in (mostly) Spanish in Esta puente, mi espalda: Voces de mujeres tercermundistas en los Estados Unidos. In her writing, Anzaldua uses a unique blend of eight languages, two variations of English and six of Spanish. In many ways, by writing in “Spanglish,” Anzaldua creates a daunting task for the non-bilingual reader to decipher the full meaning of the text. However, there is irony in the mainstream reader’s feeling of frustration and irritation. These are the very emotions Anzaldua has dealt with throughout her life, as she has struggled to communicate in a country where she felt as a non-English speaker she was shunned and punished. Language, clearly one of the borders Anzaldua addresses, is an essential feature to her writing. Her book is dedicated to being proud of one’s heritage and to recognizing the many dimensions of her culture.[3]

She has made contributions to ideas of feminism and has contributed to the field of cultural theory/Chicana and queer theory.[4] One of her major contributions was her introduction to United States academic audiences of the term mestizaje, meaning a state of being beyond binary (“either-or”) conception, into academic writing and discussion. In her theoretical works, Anzaldúa calls for a “new mestiza,” which she describes as an individual aware of her conflicting and meshing identities and uses these “new angles of vision” to challenge binary thinking in the Western world. The “new mestiza” way of thinking is illustrated in postcolonial feminism. In the same way that Anzaldúa felt she could not be classified as only part of one race or the other, she felt that she possessed a multi-sexuality. When growing up, Anzaldúa expressed that she felt an “intense sexuality” towards her own father, to animals and even to trees. She was attracted to and later had relationships with both men and women.[2]

While race normally divides people, Anzaldúa called for people of different races to confront their fears in order to move forward into a world that is less hateful and more useful. In “La Conciencia de la Mestiza: Towards a New Consciousness,” a text often used in women’s studies courses, Anzaldúa insisted that separatism invoked by Chicanos/Chicanas is not furthering the cause, but instead keeping the same racial division in place. Many of Anzaldúa’s works challenge the status quo of the movements in which she was involved. She challenged these movements in an effort to make real change happen to the world, rather than to specific groups.

Pearl cleage born december 7 1948 is an @awesome-women

Pearl Cleage (born December 7, 1948) is an African-American author whose work, both fiction and non-fiction, has been widely recognized. Her novel What Looks Like Crazy on an Ordinary Day was a 1998 Oprah Book Club selection. Cleage is known for her feminist views, particularly regarding her identity as an African-American woman. Cleage currently teaches drama at Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia.

Pearl notably writes about topics at the intersection of sexism and racism, specifically on issues such as domestic violence and rape in the black community.[7] She has been a supporter of the Obama administration.[8] Cleage is an activist for AIDS and women’s rights, experiences from which she draws from for her writings.[9]

Elizabeth jennings graham 18301901 was a black @awesome-women

Elizabeth Jennings Graham (1830–1901) was a black woman who lived in New York City. She figured in an important early civil rights case, when she insisted on her right to ride on a streetcar in 1854.

On Sunday, 16 July 1854, Jennings set off for the First Colored Congregational Church, where she was organist. As she was running late, she boarded a streetcar of the Third Avenue Railroad Company at the corner of Pearl and Chatham streets. The conductor ordered her to get off. When she refused, the conductor tried to remove her by force. Eventually, with the aid of a police officer, Jennings was ejected from the streetcar.

Horace Greeley’s New York Tribune commented on the incident in February 1855:

She got upon one of the Company’s cars last summer, on the Sabbath, to ride to church. The conductor undertook to get her off, first alleging the car was full; when that was shown to be false, he pretended the other passengers were displeased at her presence; but (when) she insisted on her rights, he took hold of her by force to expel her. She resisted. The conductor got her down on the platform, jammed her bonnet, soiled her dress and injured her person. Quite a crowd gathered, but she effectually resisted. Finally, after the car had gone on further, with the aid of a policeman they succeeded in removing her.

There was an organized movement among black New Yorkers to end this discrimination, led by notables such as Jennings’s father, Thomas, Rev. J. W. C. Pennington, and Rev. Henry Highland Garnet. Her story was publicized by Frederick Douglass, and received national attention.

Jennings filed a lawsuit against the driver, the conductor, and the Third Avenue Railroad Company in Brooklyn, where Third Avenue was headquartered. She was represented by the law firm of Culver, Parker, and Arthur. Her case was handled by the firm’s 24-year-old junior partner, Chester A. Arthur, future President of the United States.

In 1855, she received a verdict in her favor. In his charge to the jury, Brooklyn Circuit Court Judge William Rockwell declared:

Colored persons if sober, well behaved and free from disease, had the same rights as others and could neither be excluded by any rules of the Company, nor by force or violence.

The jury found for Jennings, and awarded damages in the amount of $225.00 (comparable to $5,000 to $10,000 in 2008 dollars). The judge added 10% and $22.50 in costs. The next day, the Third Avenue Railroad Company ordered its cars desegregated.

The Third Avenue Railroad, one of the first four street railway companies to be franchised in the city, had been in operation only one year at the time of the Jennings incident. The Jennings case was instrumental in establishing policy for a new service industry. A month after the verdict, a black man was refused admission to a car of the Eighth Avenue Railroad, another of the first four companies. He won a similar judgment confirming that in New York passengers could not be refused a ride based on race. New York’s public transit was fully desegregated by 1861.

Lucy parsons circa 1853 march 7 1942 was a @awesome-women

Lucy Parsons (circa 1853 – March 7, 1942) was a labor organizer, socialist, and legendary orator. Lucy was of Native American, Black, and Mexican ancestry, born in Texas as a slave. She moved to Chicago where she was a key organizer in the labor movement and also participated in revolutionary activism on behalf of political prisoners, people of color, the homeless, and women. She said, “We [women] are the slaves of slaves. We are exploited more ruthlessly than men.” We salute Lucy Parsons, known by the Chicago Police Department as “more dangerous than a thousand rioters”. Know your revolutionary women’s history.

Coolchicksfromhistory portrait of zitkala sa by @awesome-women


Portrait of Zitkala-Sa by Gertrude Kasebier, about 1898.

Zitkala-Sa was the pen name of writer and activist Gertrude Simmons Bonnin (1876-1938).  She exposed the hardships faced by students at Native American boarding schools by writing about her own experiences as a student and as a teacher.  Zitkala-Sa also published a book of tribal folklore called Old Indian Legends and composed The Sun Dance Opera with composer William F. Hanson. 

In 1930, Zitkala-Sa founded the National Council of American Indians, the first trans-tribal Native American organization to lobby the government for better treatment of Natives. 

A selection of Zitkala-Sa’s writings can be read online here.

An analysis of Gertrude Kasebier’s portraits of Zitkala-Sa can be read here.

Ellen johnson sirleaf born 29 october 1938 is @awesome-women

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (born 29 October 1938) is the 24th and current President of Liberia. She served as Minister of Finance under President William Tolbert from 1979 until the 1980 coup d'état, after which she left Liberia and held senior positions at various financial institutions. She was one of the founders and the political leader of National Patriotic Front of Liberia, the warlord Charles Taylor’s party. She placed second in the 1997 presidential election won by Charles Taylor. She won the 2005 presidential election and took office on 16 January 2006. She successfully ran for re-election in 2011. Sirleaf is the first elected female head of state in Africa.

Sirleaf was awarded the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize, jointly with Leymah Gbowee of Liberia and Tawakel Karman of Yemen. The women were recognized “for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work.”[1]

Tawakkol karman arabic توكل كرمان tawakkul @awesome-women

Tawakkol Karman (Arabic: توكل كرمانTawak[k]ul Karmān) (born 7 February 1979[9]) became the international public face of the 2011 Yemeni uprising that is part of the Arab Spring uprisings. She has been called by Yemenis the “Iron Woman” and “Mother of the Revolution.”[10][11] She is a co-recipient of the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize,[12] becoming the first Yemeni, the first Arab woman,[13] and the second Muslim woman to win a Nobel Prize and the youngest Nobel Peace Laureate to date.[14]

Karman is a Yemeni journalist, politician and senior member of the of Al-Islah political party, and human rights activist who heads the group “Women Journalists Without Chains,” which she co-founded in 2005.[5] She gained prominence in her country after 2005 in her roles as a Yemeni journalist and an advocate for a mobile phone news service denied a license in 2007, after which she led protests for press freedom. She organized weekly protests after May 2007 expanding the issues for reform.[5][15] She redirected the Yemeni protests to support the “Jasmine Revolution,” as she calls the Arab Spring, after the Tunisian people overthrew the government of Zine El Abidine Ben Ali in January 2011. She has been a vocal opponent who has called for the end of President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s regime.[16]

Leymah gbowee is a liberian activist who led a @awesome-women

Leymah Gbowee is a Liberian activist who led a women’s peace movement that helped bring an end to her country’s long civil war, a story depicted in the film Pray the Devil Back to Hell. In this excerpt from her new book, Gbowee tells the story of how she first managed to get a meeting with the warlord/President Charles Taylor.

“Once again, we sat. The movement we called the “Mass Action for Peace” would later appear to be a spontaneous uprising. It was prompted by emotion — by women’s exhaustion and desperation — but there was nothing spontaneous about it; managing a huge daily public protest was a complicated task and we planned every move we made. The women from CWI and Muslim Women for Peace were responsible for the day-to-day activities on the field. If they said it was time to sing, we sang. We also formed committees to handle different jobs, such as finding buses to bring women to the protest from the internally displaced persons camps.”

The Nobel Peace Prize 2011 was awarded jointly to Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee and Tawakkol Karman “for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work”.

Out on the tarmac i watch as captain patricia @awesome-women

Out on the tarmac, I watch as Captain Patricia Yapp Syau Yin RMAF, 33, climbs the rung of the ladder and into the cockpit of the MiG-29 Fulcrum for a combat air tactics drill.

Today, it’s to be a face-off with the American F/A-18D Hornet, the Russian Sukhoi SU-30MKM and the British Hawk.

At the control tower’s go-ahead, Yapp, who reigns as the first ever woman to become a qualified MiG-29 fighter pilot (source: RMAF) and a member of the RMAF’s Tedung Selar fraternity, salutes and rips away from the tyre-scorched runway. The sudden quiet as it rockets into the sky becomes quite deafening.

Denise wilson is an anomaly in the flying @awesome-women

Denise Wilson is an anomaly in the flying community. She is one of the nearly 38,000 active female pilots in the United States, just six percent of all active pilots in the country, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. She’s been flying for the past 15 years including stints working for Aloha Airlines and other major airlines. What makes her even more rare is that she’s also the founder and president of an aviation company, Desert Jet, which she launched in 2007.

The company acts as brokers for corporations who own their own planes, thereby affording companies who own private aircrafts the opportunity to offset their expenses by chartering out their planes when they are not in use. This arrangement allows Desert Jet to have full operation of the aircraft without the debt and liabilities associated with actual ownership.

The company warehouses and leases out the aircraft on a per-flight basis to the general public for prices that range from $1,500 to $3,500 per hour. “Our clients will call us and tell us where they want to go and what time they want to go. We provide them not only with the aircraft, but also with ground transportation, catering on the flight, and any other special requests,” says Wilson.
The most famous woman pilot of her era amelia @awesome-women

The most famous woman pilot of her era, Amelia Earhart was a promoter of women’s careers in aviation and one of the founders of the Ninety-Nines, the first professional organization of women pilots. Her disappearance in 1937 during an around-the-world flight attempt sent shockwaves through the aviation community. Speculation about what happened to her is widespread nearly three quarters of a century later.

Evelyn mama bird johnson 95 poses by a plane @awesome-women

Evelyn “Mama Bird” Johnson, 95, poses by a plane at Moore-Murrell Airport in Morristown, Tenn., in this 2005 photo. Johnson, the pioneering female pilot and Guinness world record holder has died. She was 102. Johnson held the Guinness Book of World Records certificate for most hours in the air for a female pilot.

Mrs. Johnson was inducted into the National Aviation Hall of Fame in 2007 after flying for 55 years and spending the equivalent of seven years in the air. She was estimated to have flown 5.5 million miles — equal to 23 trips to the moon — and never had a crash despite her share of mechanical troubles in the sky.

Helen richey 19091947 was a pioneering female @awesome-women

Helen Richey (1909–1947) was a pioneering female aviator and the first woman to be hired as a pilot by a commercial airline in the United States.

Richey was born in McKeesport, Pennsylvania. Her father, Joseph B. Richey, was superintendent of schools in McKeesport from 1902 to 1935. During her teens, Richey was one of the few girls in McKeesport who wore pants. She learned how to fly a plane at age 20. Her father bought her a plane when she obtained her pilot’s license.

In 1932 Richey partnered with another female pilot, Frances Marsalis, to set an endurance record by staying airborne for nearly 10 days, with midair refueling. In 1934 Richey won the premier air race at the first National Air Meet for women in Dayton, Pennsylvania. Also in 1934, Central Airlines, a Greensburg, Pennsylvania–based carrier that eventually became part of United Airlines, hired Richey as a pilot; she made her first regular civil flight with them on December 31, taking a Ford Trimotor on the Washington to Detroit route.[1] She eventually was forced to step down from the cockpit by the all-male pilots union.

After leaving Central Airlines, Richey continued to perform at air shows. In 1936 she teamed with Amelia Earhart in a transcontinental air race, the Bendix Trophy Race. Richey and Earhart came in fifth, beating some all-male teams. Later, Richey flew with the British Air Transportation Authority during World War II.

In addition to being the first female commercial airline pilot, Richey also was the first woman sworn in to pilot air mail and one of the first female flight instructors.

Li ying prepares for a flight in the cockpit of a @awesome-women

Li Ying prepares for a flight in the cockpit of a plane in Shenyang, the capital of Northeast China’s Liaoning province, May 30, 2011. The 25-year-old is the first female civil aviation pilot in the northeastern region of China.

Jessica neuwirth is one of the founders and @awesome-women

Jessica Neuwirth is one of the founders and current Chair of Equality Now.  From 1985 to 1990, she worked for Amnesty International and subsequently for Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton, specializing in sovereign debt restructuring.  She has also worked in the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs and as Director of the New York Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.  She served as a special consultant on sexual violence to the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda for the Akayesu and Musema judgments, and worked again for the ICTR on the Media judgment.  As a guest lecturer in 2005, she taught international women’s rights at Harvard Law School. As Special Advisor on Sexual Violence to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in 2010, she organized the UN high-level panel on reparations for victims of sexual violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo. She holds a J.D. from Harvard Law School and a B.A. in History from Yale University.

Known among storm chasers in the southwest as the @awesome-women

Known among storm chasers in the Southwest as “The Lightning Lady,” a nickname coined by the manager of the processing lab at Tempe Camera (where she develops her film), Susan Strom is one of the state’s few female storm chasers. “It’s a fairly male-dominated activity,” she says. “I guess women see the danger versus the thrill.”

With her camera and tripod in the passenger seat, she’ll drive as far as Tucson or Flagstaff any night of the week to photograph what she calls “the split-second frontier.” Her dazzling lightning storm photographs are published in numerous books and calendars, showcased in prominent art exhibitions, broadcast on The Weather Channel, and the subject of television news segments from Arizona to the United Kingdom.

Tempe Camera’s processing lab manager, Len Bahl, says Strom has the chops. “Getting a first-rate lightning photograph is an enormous challenge,” he says. “Strom’s shots are super-sharp and have strong composition because she’s well-researched and everything’s pre-scouted when the storm rolls in.”

One evening, after moving to Fountain Hills 16 years ago, she heard a deafening boom and dropped to the floor. The next morning, she looked at her yard and saw a “tree was split in half with a scar burned straight down the middle,” she says. “From then on, lightning made me really nervous, even seeing it from a distance.”

Since fear stems, in part, from the unknown, Strom set out to make lightning known. “I read everything I could get my hands on,” she says. “Fear was soon replaced by fascination, and I would never have guessed what happened next… I actually looked forward to the monsoon. But the odd thing about lightning is that it happens for just a split second, not long enough to get a good look. Photography seemed the answer.”

“My first year storm chasing included four- or five-hour drives each night. If I drove Highway 60 through old mining communities and vast stretches of open land to the eastern part of the state, little towns like Safford gave me lightning all night long. Or I’d find myself near some dry lake bed in Willcox at two in the morning. Thousands and thousands of miles added up on my truck. Wherever lightning went, I wasn’t far behind.” 

Teri fahrendorf brewmaster road brewer founder @awesome-women

Brewmaster, Road Brewer, Founder of Pink Boots Society

In 1989, Teri became the second woman brewmaster at a craft brewery in the USA. She was the first woman brewmaster at a California craft brewery, and the first at an Oregon craft brewery.

Many times during her journey Teri was asked, “How many women brewers are there?” Not knowing the answer, Teri founded the Pink Boots Society and was determined to collect the names and contact information for all women brewers worldwide. This list of women brewers can be found at

Teri continues her career in the beer industry as President of the Pink Boots Society, an international charitable trade organization created to inspire, encourage, and empower women to become professionals in the Beer Industry. She is currently underemployed as a beer store clerk, by choice, in order to get this ground-breaking organization up and running.

Over the 19 years of her active brewing career, Teri was involved in the hiring and/or training of 44 new brewers. She affectionately refers to these talented brewers as graduates of “Triple Rock Brewing School” or the “Steelhead School of Practical Brewing.”

Born in New York, but raised in Wisconsin, Teri believes her brewing career is a natural outgrowth of her childhood fascination with yeast. She made her first loaf of homemade bread at ten, and began fermenting fruit wines and meads while attending the University of Wisconsin. In 1985, Teri switched to brewing beer and never looked back.

Previous to her brewing career, Teri was a systems analyst for Unisys Corporation in San Francisco, a Fortune 100 company at the time.

Beer specialist mirella amato has dedicated @awesome-women

Beer specialist Mirella Amato has dedicated herself to helping people discover and explore beer since 2007.

Through Beerology, Mirella regularly conducts fun and informative guided beer tasting sessions as well as beer dinners, food pairing workshops and seminars. She can also be seen hosting public beer tastings at various festivals.

Mirella is always striving to further her beer knowledge and sensory evaluation repertoire. She was the first woman in Canada to become a Certified Cicerone (beer sommelier.) She has completed an advanced brewing certificate on the critical control points in brewing at Maska Laboratories in Saint-Hyacinthe, Québec and passed the WSET Intermediate Certificate in Wine & Spirits with honours. More recently, Mirella completed an Advanced Draft Training Course at the Micro Matic Dispense Institute. She is one of only ten National Level BJCP judges in the country and has sat on the jury for homebrew competitions internationally

On september 28th 1865 elizabeth garrett @awesome-women

On September 28th, 1865 Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, after trying repeatedly to get a medical degree but getting turned down because  of her sex, took the Society of Aphothecaries examn and became the first woman physician in England. Mrs. Anderson was the co-founder of the first hospital staffed by women, the first Dean of a British medical school, the first woman M.D. in France, the first woman in Britain to be elected to a school board and, as Mayor of Aldeburgh, the first female mayor and magistrate in Britain.

‘The New Hospital for Women’, developed from the hospital 'St Mary’s Dispensary’, in the 1870s. It was founded to enable poor women to obtain medical help from qualified female practitioners - in that era a very unusual thing. In 1866, Elizabeth Garrett Anderson was appointed General Medical Attendant to 'St Mary’s Dispensary’, where she worked for over 20 years. Later, in 1918, the hospital was named 'Elizabeth Garrett Anderson Hospital’.

Although she may have been one of the toughest @awesome-women

Although she may have been one of the toughest women ever to work in a convent, ‘Black Mary’ had earned the respect and devotion of most of the residents of the pioneer community of Cascade, Montana, before she died in 1914. In fact, Mary Fields was widely beloved. She was admired and respected throughout the region for holding her own and living her own way in a world where the odds were stacked against her. In a time when African Americans and women of any race enjoyed little freedom anywhere in the world, Mary Fields enjoyed more freedom than most white men.

Fields dressed in the comfortable clothes of a man, including a wool cap and boots, and she wore a revolver strapped around her waist under her apron. At 200 pounds, she was said to be a match for any two men in Montana Territory. She had a standing bet that she could knock a man out with one punch, and she never lost a dime to anyone foolish enough to take her up on that bet. By order of the mayor, she was the only woman of reputable character in Cascade allowed to drink in the local bar, and while she enjoyed the privilege, she never drank to excess. She was often spotted smoking cigars in public, and she liked to argue politics with anyone.

Fields was the maid and childhood friend of an Ursuline sister named Mother Amadeus. When the sister served at the Ursuline convent in Toledo, Ohio, Fields joined her there. Later, Mother Amadeus was called to take a position at the new St. Peter’s Convent near what was to become Cascade, Mont., a small town that grew up on the new Montana Central railroad route between Helena and Great Falls. Mother Amadeus became ill with pneumonia in 1885 and called for Fields. Her longtime friend did not take long leaving Toledo for the West. As soon as Fields arrived at St. Peter’s Convent, she set about nursing Mother Amadeus back to health.

When Mother Amadeus was well, Fields stayed on to work at the convent. She handled the stage that brought visitors from the train station, where she would often spend the night waiting for her passengers. She also hauled critical supplies for the convent. She alone handled the wagon team that hauled the goods, no matter what the weather or road conditions. One winter night, a pack of wolves spooked her horses and the wagon overturned. Fields stood guard and protected the food shipment from the wolves through the night, knowing how much the nuns depended on the supplies to survive.

Although the sisters tried their best to smooth Fields’ rough edges by inviting her to participate in services and practice her Catholic faith, Fields preferred the rougher company of the men who worked around the convent. She drank and swore with the best of them, fought them with her formidable fists, smoked cigars, swapped stories and became a crack shot with revolver and rifle. She also worked as hard as she played. At the convent she washed clothes and sacristy linen, cared for as many as 400 chickens, and tended large gardens for the sisters.

One account tells of a gun duel that she had, although no details are available. Then there were the fistfights, most of which she won. During one trip to a ranch, Fields got into a heated debate over a harness. She used a small rock to emphasize her point, and ended up making a dent in the head of the ranch foreman.

Fields traveled to the state capital, Helena, to plead her case. She demanded that she be allowed to confront her accusers, but Bishop Brondell told her that nothing would change his mind. She would have to leave St. Peter’s. Unable to resist the will of her bishop, Mother Amadeus did the next best thing. She moved Fields into nearby Cascade and secured the mail route for her between Cascade and the convent. Mother Amadeus even bought her friend a wagon and a team of horses for the new route. Mary Fields became only the second woman in the country to manage a mail route. She took to her new job, sticking with it for the next eight years.

Matilda of tuscany italian matilde latin @awesome-women

Matilda of Tuscany (Italian: Matilde, Latin: Matilda, Mathilda) (1046 – 24 July 1115) was an Italian noblewoman, the principal Italian supporter of Pope Gregory VII during the Investiture Controversy. She is one of the few medieval women to be remembered for her military accomplishments. She is sometimes called la Gran Contessa (“the Great Countess”) or Matilda of Canossa after her ancestral castle of Canossa.

Douglaswolk julie daubigny was a 17th century @awesome-women


Julie D’Aubigny was a 17th-century bisexual French opera singer and fencing master who killed or wounded at least ten men in life-or-death duels, performed nightly shows on the biggest and most highly-respected opera stage in the world, and once took the Holy Orders just so that she could sneak into a convent and bang a nun. If nothing in that sentence at least marginally interests you, I have no idea why you’re visiting this website. (via Badass of the Week: Julie D’Aubigny, La Maupin) (thank you, Rachel!)

Dame judith olivia dench ch dbe frsa born 9 @awesome-women

Dame Judith Olivia Dench, CH, DBE, FRSA (born 9 December 1934) is an English film, stage and television actress. Dench made her professional debut in 1957 with the Old Vic Company. Over the following few years she played in several of Shakespeare’s plays in such roles as Ophelia in Hamlet, Juliet in Romeo and Juliet and Lady Macbeth in Macbeth. She branched into film work, and won a BAFTA Award as Most Promising Newcomer; however, most of her work during this period was in theatre. Not generally known as a singer, she drew strong reviews for her leading role in the musical Cabaret in 1968.

Over the next two decades, she established herself as one of the most significant British theatre performers, working for the National Theatre Company and the Royal Shakespeare Company. In television, she achieved success during this period, in the series A Fine Romance from 1981 until 1984 and in 1992 began a continuing role in the television romantic comedy series As Time Goes By. Her film appearances were infrequent until she was cast as M in GoldenEye (1995), a role she continued to play in James Bond films through Skyfall (2012). She received several notable film awards for her role as Queen Victoria in Mrs. Brown (1997), and has since been acclaimed for her work in such films as Shakespeare in Love (1998), Chocolat (2000), Iris (2001), Mrs Henderson Presents (2005) and Notes on a Scandal (2006), and the television production The Last of the Blonde Bombshells (2001).

Dench has worked with the non-governmental indigenous organisation, Survival International, campaigning in the defence of the tribal people, the Bushmen of Botswana and the Arhuaco of Colombia. She made a small supporting video saying the Bushmen are victims of tyranny, greed and racism.[83][84] On 22 July 2010, Dench was awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Letters (DLitt) by Nottingham Trent University.[85] The Dr. Hadwen Trust announced on 15 January 2011 that Dench had become a patron of the trust joining existing high profile personalities, Joanna Lumley and David Shepherd.[86] On 19 March 2012 it was announced that Dench was to become honorary patron of the charity “Everton in the Community”, the official charity of Everton F.C. in Everton, Liverpool. It was also revealed that Dench is a supporter of Everton.[87] She is an advisor to the American Shakespeare Center. She is patron of East Park Riding for the Disabled, a riding school for disabled children at Newchapel, Surrey.[88] In 2011 along with musician Sting and entrepreneur Richard Branson she publicly urged policy makers to adopt more progressive drug policies by decriminalizing drug use.[89]

Arthur laurents needed a maria for his upcoming @awesome-women

Arthur Laurents needed a Maria for his upcoming Broadway revival of “West Side Story.” The 91-year-old director, who wrote the libretto for the legendary 1957 musical, found her on YouTube.

Josefina Scaglione was an Argentine stage actress working in Buenos Aires. She spoke English with a rich Spanish accent, was unknown to American audiences and was exactly what Mr. Laurents had been searching for.

“She has this incredible, ineffable something,” the director says. “She’s trained as an opera singer, she’s trained as a ballet dancer and she’s trained as an actress. It’s unbelievable in somebody that young.”

Ms. Scaglione says her Latin background is enough to help her understand the role, even though she is Argentine, not Puerto Rican. “I love dancing salsa and Latin rhythms and everything, so I think I’m related to that,” she says. She’s also been practicing her Puerto Rican dialect.

So far, she says, the only thing tripping her up is emotion. While rehearsing “Tonight” with Mr. Cavenaugh, she says they got so absorbed that they forgot whose parts were whose. “When we’re so in the moment,” she says, “we forget about singing.”

Karen olivo born august 7 1976 is an american @awesome-women

Karen Olivo (born August 7, 1976) is an American stage and television actress, who is known for originating the role of Vanessa in the Tony Award–winning musical In the Heights both on and off Broadway. She won the Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical for her performance as Anita (2009–2010) in the revival of West Side Story. She is the first and only actor to win a Tony for a performance in West Side Story.

Olivo’s father is of Puerto Rican and Native American descent, and her mother is of Dominican and Chinese descent. She was born in New York City and raised in Bartow, Florida. She attended the Lois Cowles Harrison Center for the Visual and Performing Arts in nearby Lakeland, Florida, and later the University of Cincinnati – College-Conservatory of Music.

Virginia marie ginni rometty born july 1958 is @awesome-women

Virginia Marie “Ginni” Rometty (born July 1958) is an American business executive. She is the current president and CEO of IBM, and the first woman to head the company.[1] Prior to becoming president and CEO in January 2012 she held the position of Senior Vice President and Group Executive for Sales, Marketing, and Strategy at IBM. She has been named to Fortune magazine’s “50 Most Powerful Women in Business” for eight consecutive years, ranking #1 for 2012,[2] and she was ranked #15 on Forbes magazine’s “World’s 100 Most Powerful Women” for the same year.[3] She was also named to the Time 100 in 2012.[4]

Portia simpson miller age 66 occupation @awesome-women

Portia Simpson-Miller

Age: 66
Occupation: Jamaican Prime Minister

Simpson-Miller just began her second stint in six years as Jamaica’s PM, and she’s kicking off the country’s 50th anniversary of independence by calling for the island to sever ties with the British monarchy. More impressive, however, is that she did something few thought possible in one of the world’s most homophobic nations: she called for full civil rights for gays and lesbians. One has to understand Jamaica’s violently antihomosexual history to appreciate her courage, which could resonate throughout the region if she’s successful.

Marissa mayer vice president google 2010 rank 42 @awesome-women

Marissa Mayer

Vice president
2010 rank: 42
Age: 36
Mayer calls the shots on product, engineering, and operations for all of Google’s local products, including Google Maps, Google Earth, and local search, and orchestrated the Zagat acquisition. She’s one of the company’s most visible spokespeople, a role that will likely grow with media-shy Larry Page at the helm.
Curate because i am empowered i was able to @awesome-women


Because i am empowered, i was able to navigate and find community that was safe for me as a Filipino person, but at the same time, i did not have a Filipino community that also embraced my radical gender politics. I found Filipino spaces in Toronto still very heteronormative. And i find myself displaced and isolated wherever i turn – in queer spaces, i found many amazing people of colour, but there were very few Filipino people; in Filipino spaces, i did not find a lot of queer and trans visibility and explicit inclusion, and i find this problematic. And so, as i sit with all these reflections and understanding my needs for liberation and validation, i am achingly longing for a space that embraced both my queerness and filipinoness.”

Charm Torres is a queer immigrant filipina and a Registered Nurse practicing LGBTTQQI2SA Primary Care. Her nursing care is founded and guided by philosophies of anti-oppression, pro-choice philosophies, social justice and feminism. She has been doing anti-oppression focused nursing and activism during her whole 10 years in Canada. She has remained committed in practicing and continuing her nursing work in the community as opposed to mainstream hospital care systems. She was previously a Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Nurse Examiner and a Sexual and Reproductive Health Counsellor. (via Queer, Femme, and Filipina: Charm Torres | SAGE | the blog)

h/t etiquette-etc

Mary callahan erdoes is chief executive officer of @awesome-women

Mary Callahan Erdoes is Chief Executive Officer of J.P. Morgan’s Asset Management division, a global leader in investment management and private banking with more than $1.3 trillion in assets under supervision. In addition to being a member of JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s Operating and Executive Committees, Mrs. Erdoes leads the firm’s strategic partnership with Highbridge Capital Management and Gávea Investimentos. She is currently ranked the 24th most powerful woman according to Forbes.[4]

In 1996, she joined J.P. Morgan Asset Management as head of fixed income for high-net-worth individuals, foundations and endowments.[2] In March 2005, she was appointed CEO of J.P. Morgan Private Bank.[3] She assumed her current post in September 2009. She has been mentioned as a potential successor to JPMorgan Chase & Co. CEO Jamie Dimon.[6]

She currently serves as a board member of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF.[5]

Grace d lieblein president and managing @awesome-women
Grace D. Lieblein

President and managing director
GM Brazil
2011 Global Rank: 22
Country: Brazil
Some three decades after starting as a co-op student at GM’s assembly division in Los Angeles, Lieblein, 51, is now the automaker’s highest-ranking executive in Latin America. After profitably running GM’s Mexico operations – she was the first woman to do so – she took the wheel in Brazil, one of GM’s largest global markets, in June.
Junko nakagawa executive managing director and @awesome-women
Junko Nakagawa
Executive managing director and CFO
Nomura Holdings, Inc.
2011 Global Rank: 34
In a country where very few women occupy “C-level” offices, Nakagawa, 46, shattered two glass ceilings this year. A promotion to CFO made her the first woman to hold the post in Nomura Holdings’ 85-year history. She was also named the first female executive managing director on the board, on which she serves with four men.
Life fifty years ago in march 1962 first lady @awesome-women


Fifty years ago, in March 1962, First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy traveled to India on a goodwill tour. Here, offers a series of both published and previously unpublished photographs from Kennedy’s 1962 trip  — images that capture a young woman, wife, mother and fashion icon-in-the-making (“Her every seam has been the subject of hypnotized attention from the streets of Delhi to the Khyber Pass,” Chamberlin wrote) navigating the high-stakes, high-stress worlds of diplomacy and international relations with apparent ease and inimitable aplomb.

(see the photos here)

The caption that accompanied this photo in LIFE: “As day followed vivid day, India’s magic began to work on Mrs. Kennedy and — in a change from the first days of the trip — she became relaxed and easy.”

Honeyspider women of history dae jang geum @awesome-women


WOMEN OF HISTORY | DAE JANG GEUM (fl. early 16th century) (Eun-Kyung Shin)

Jang Geum was the only female Royal Physician in Korean history.

Mentioned several times in official documents and personal journals from the time, very little detail was ever given about her and her life outside the court is completely unknown. It is known, however, that King Jungjong was impressed enough with her knowledge that he entrusted her with the care of himself and his family.

She was, at the time, the third highest ranking officer in the court and was allowed the title Dae (‘great’) before her name. To this day, no other woman in Korea has ever held the position of Royal Physician.

Rip adrienne rich @awesome-women


Adrienne Rich (1929-2012)
Today, America lost one of its most epoch-making poets.  Adrienne Rich was a feminist, humanitarian, and deeply caring writer who helped change what it meant to be poet in the modern world while opening the possibilities of language to new, daring directions.

From “Diving into the Wreck” 

I came to explore the wreck.
The words are purposes.
The words are maps.
I came to see the damage that was done
and the treasures that prevail.
I stroke the beam of my lamp
slowly along the flank
of something more permanent
than fish or weed

the thing I came for:
the wreck and not the story of the wreck
the thing itself and not the myth
the drowned face always staring
toward the sun
the evidence of damage
worn by salt and away into this threadbare beauty
the ribs of the disaster
curving their assertion
among the tentative haunters.

This is the place.
And I am here, the mermaid whose dark hair
streams black, the merman in his armored body.

For the complete poem, plus an audio file of Adrienne Rich reading her this poem in the year 2009, click here.

Minnesota made history in january 2012 by becoming @awesome-women

Minnesota made history in January 2012 by becoming the first state to elect an openly lesbian Native American to its legislature. Earlier in her campaign, Susan Allen noted, “I reflect the great diversity of our district, as a Native American woman and a member of the LGBT community, and hope to bring this important voice to the state capital to offer more balanced, representative contributions and input.”

Tanya tagaq bfa born tanya tagaq gillis and @awesome-women

Tanya Tagaq (BFA) (born Tanya Tagaq Gillis and sometimes credited as Tagaq) is an Inuk throat singer from Cambridge Bay (Ikaluktuutiak), Nunavut, Canada, on the south coast of Victoria Island.[1] After attending school in Cambridge Bay, at age 15, she went to Yellowknife, Northwest Territories to attend high school where she first began to practice throat singing. She later studied visual arts at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University and while there developed her own solo form of Inuit throat singing, which is normally done by two women.[2]

Although she has become a popular performer at Canadian folk festivals, such as Folk on the Rocks in 2005,[3] she is best known both in Canada and internationally for her collaborations with Björk, including concert tours and the 2004 album Medúlla. She has also performed with the Kronos Quartet and Shooglenifty and featured on the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network.

Viola fauver gregg liuzzo april 11 1925 march @awesome-women

Viola Fauver Gregg Liuzzo (April 11, 1925 – March 25, 1965) was a Unitarian Universalist civil rights activist from Michigan, who was murdered by Ku Klux Klan members after the 1965 Selma to Montgomery marches in Alabama. One of the Klansmen in the car from which the shots were fired was a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) informant.[1]

Liuzzo’s name is one of those inscribed on a civil rights memorial in the state capital. She died at the age of 39.

Liuzzo was horrified by the images of the aborted march on March 7, 1965 at the Edmund Pettus Bridge which became known as “Bloody Sunday.” Nine days later, she took part in a protest at Wayne State. She then called her husband to tell him she would be traveling to Selma, saying that the struggle “was everybody’s fight.”

After the march concluded on March 25, Liuzzo, assisted by Leroy Moton, a 19-year-old African American, helped drive local marchers to African American colleges and to their homes in her 1963 Oldsmobile. As they were driving along Route 80, a car tried to force them off the road. A car with four Klan members then pulled up alongside Liuzzo’s car and shot directly at her, hitting her twice in the head, killing her instantly. Her car veered into a ditch and crashed into a fence.[3]

Although Moton was covered with blood, the bullets had missed him. He lay motionless when the Klansmen reached the car to check on their victims. After the car left, he began running for the next half hour looking and searching for help, and eventually flagged down a truck driven by Rev. Leon Riley that was bringing civil rights workers back to Selma.

Liuzzo’s funeral was held at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic church on March 30 in Detroit, with many prominent members of both the civil rights movement and government there to pay their respects. Included in this group were Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.; NAACP executive director Roy Wilkins; Congress on Racial Equality national leader James Farmer; Michigan lieutenant governor William G. Milliken; Teamsters president Jimmy Hoffa; and United Auto Workers president Walter Reuther.

Sara josephine baker november 15 1873 february @awesome-women

Sara Josephine Baker (November 15, 1873 – February 22, 1945) was an American physician notable for making contributions to public health, especially in New York City. She is best known for (twice) tracking down the infamous index case known as Typhoid Mary, as well as vastly improving hygiene in the immigrant communities of Hell’s Kitchen. Her fight against the damage that widespread urban poverty and ignorance once wreaked upon children, especially newborns, is perhaps her most lasting legacy. In 1917, she noted that babies born in the United States faced a higher mortality rate than soldiers fighting in World War I, drawing a great deal of attention to her cause.[1]

In 1901, Baker passed the civil service exam and qualified to be a medical inspector at the Department of Health, working as a school inspector. After working diligently in the school system, she was offered an opportunity to help lower the mortality rate in Hell’s Kitchen, which was considered the worst slum in New York at the turn of the century, with as many as 4,500 people dying every week. Baker decided to focus on the infant mortality rate in particular, as babies accounted for some 1,500 of the weekly deaths. Most of the deaths were caused by dysentery, though parental ignorance and poor hygiene were often indirectly to blame.[2]

While Baker was campaigning to license midwives, treat blindness, encourage breastfeeding, provide safe pasteurized milk, and educate mothers, older children were still getting sick and malnourished. Baker worked to make sure each school had its own doctor and nurse, and that the children were routinely checked for diseases like lice and trachoma. This system worked so well that diseases once rampant in schools became almost non-existent.

Early in her career, Baker had twice helped to catch Mary Mallon, also known as “Typhoid Mary”. Mallon was the first known healthy carrier of typhoid, who instigated several separate outbreaks of the disease and is known to have infected over fifty people through her job as a cook. At least three of the people she infected died.[4] Mallon was not the only repeat offender nor the only typhoid-contagious cook in New York City at the time, but she was unique in that she did not herself suffer from any ill-effects of the disease and in that she was ultimately the only patient placed in isolation for the rest of her life.

Josephine Baker became the first woman to be a professional representative to the League of Nations when she represented the United States in the Health Committee. Many government positions, departments, and committees were created because of her work including the Federal Children’s Bureau and Public Health Services (now the Department of Health and Human Services) and child hygiene departments in every state. She was also active in many groups and societies including over twenty-five medical societies and the New York State Department of Health. She also became the President of the American Medical Women’s Association and wrote 250 articles (both professional and for the popular press), 4 books, and her autobiography before her death in 1945.

Helen brooke taussig may 24 1898 may 20 1986 @awesome-women

Helen Brooke Taussig (May 24, 1898 – May 20, 1986) was an American cardiologist, working in Baltimore and Boston, who founded the field of pediatric cardiology. Notably, she is credited with developing the concept for a procedure that would extend the lives of children born with Tetrology of Fallot (also known as blue baby syndrome). This concept was applied in practice as a procedure known as the Blalock-Taussig shunt. The procedure was developed by Dr. Alfred Blalock and Vivien Thomas, who were Taussig’s colleagues at the Johns Hopkins Hospital.

Dr. Taussig was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Lyndon Johnson in 1964, and the following year she became the first female president of the American Heart Association. Johns Hopkins University named the “Helen B. Taussig Children’s Pediatric Cardiac Center” in her honor, and in 2005 the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine named one of its four colleges in her honor[1].

Boston marathon day women @awesome-women


This past weekend, one of our local NPR affiliates, WBUR, broadcast an interview with the first woman ever to officially register and run in the Boston Marathon, in 1967: Kathrine Switzer (click through for audio). Her running coach scoffed at the idea when she first brought up the possibility, but when she ran thirty miles with him in training he was forced to think again. They registered her by initial only (women weren’t officially allowed to race in the marathon until 1972) and she completed the race despite the fact that she was heckled verbally by officials and one man completely lost it and tried to rip her number off her back.

(via Marathon Monday: Remembering 1967′s Historic First - The Pursuit of Harpyness)

Kathrine Switzer (born January 5, 1947) is an American author, television commentator and marathon runner,[1] best known as the first woman to run the Boston Marathon as a numbered entry. She entered and completed the race in 1967, five years before women were officially allowed to compete in it. Her finishing time of approximately 4 hours and 20 minutes was nearly an hour behind the first female finisher, Bobbi Gibb (who ran unregistered).[2] She registered under the gender-neutral “K. V. Switzer”. It was not done in an attempt to mislead the officials; she had long used “K. V. Switzer” to sign the articles she wrote for her college paper. Race official Jock Semple attempted to remove her from the race, and is noted to have shouted, “Get the hell out of my race and give me those numbers.” However, Switzer’s boyfriend Tom Miller, who was running with her, shoved Semple aside and sent him flying. The photographs taken of the incident made world headlines.[3]

As a result of her run, the AAU barred women from all competition with male runners, on pain of losing the right to compete.[4]

Switzer, with other women runners, tried to convince the Boston Athletic Association to allow women to participate in the marathon. Finally, in 1972, women were welcome to run the Boston Marathon officially for the first time ever.[5]

Shirin ebadi persian شيرين عبادى širin ebādi @awesome-women

Shirin Ebadi (Persian: شيرين عبادىŠirin Ebādi; born 21 June 1947) is an Iranian lawyer, a former judge and human rights activist and founder of Defenders of Human Rights Center in Iran. On 10 October 2003, Ebadi was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her significant and pioneering efforts for democracy and human rights, especially women’s, children’s, and refugee rights. She was the first ever Iranian to receive the prize.

In 2009, Ebadi’s award was allegedly confiscated by Iranian authorities, though this was later denied by the Iranian government.[3] If true, she would be the first person in the history of the Nobel Prize whose award has been forcibly seized by state authorities.[4]

Ebadi lives in Tehran, but she has been in exile in the UK since June 2009 due to the increase in persecution of Iranian citizens who are critical of the current regime.[5] In 2004, she was listed by Forbes magazine as one of the “100 most powerful women in the world”.[6] She is also included in a published list of the “100 most influential women of all time.”[7]

Gameela ismail stands at the forefront of egyptian @awesome-women

Gameela Ismail stands at the forefront of Egyptian women fighting to create a new country in the wake of the world-shaking revolution that took place this past January. Ismail has long been a fearless, outspoken advocate for justice. She was forced out of her job as a TV presenter when her then-husband husband, Ayman Nour, became the first person to challenge Hosni Mubarak for the presidency in 2005. When Nour was imprisoned following his loss to Mubarak, Ismail and her children took to the streets, chanting, “Down, Down, Hosni Mubarak!” at a time when doing so could have cost them their lives. In 2008 government thugs set her husband’s party headquarters on fire — while she was inside. Ismail escaped, but was pressured into dropping charges when police told her she was the prime arson suspect. Since then, Ismail has evolved into a public symbol of the fight for democracy in Egypt. She ran for parliament in the 2010 elections and is planning to run again during the country’s first free elections this fall.

Wilwheaton deejaybird uhura comes from the @awesome-women



“Uhura” comes from the Swahili word UHURU meaning “freedom”. Uhura was pretty much the first ever black main character on American television who was not a maid or a domestic servant in 1966. TV network NBC refused to let Nichelle Nichols be a regular, claiming Deep South affiliates would be angered, so Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry hired her as a “day worker,” but still included her in almost every episode. She actually made more money than any of the other actors through this workaround, and it was kept secret from the other actors, but it was still a humiliating second-class status. The network people made life hard for Nichols, constantly trying to pare down her screen time, purposefully dropping racist comments in her presence and even withholding her fan mail from her. This deplorable state of affairs led Nichols to make the decision to quit after the 1st season, but then she happened to meet the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. who pleaded with her to stick with the show because as a Black woman she was portraying the first non-stereotypical role on television. I had a crush on Uhura as a kid. LOL.

I love this picture, I love this woman, I love that Gene took a stand against the network, and I love that Nichelle had the courage to stick around, and inspire a generation of women (of color and otherwise) to believe in themselves.

Nichelle Nichols (born Grace Dell Nichols; December 28, 1932) is an American actress, singer and voice artist. She sang with Duke Ellington and Lionel Hampton before turning to acting. Her most famous role is that of communications officer Lieutenant Uhura aboard the USS Enterprise in the popular Star Trek television series, as well as the succeeding motion pictures, where her character was eventually promoted in Starfleet to the rank of commander.

After the cancellation of Star Trek, Nichols volunteered her time in a special project with NASA to recruit minority and female personnel for the space agency, which proved to be a success.[13] She began this work by making an affiliation between NASA and a company which she helped to run, Women in Motion.[14][15][16][17][18][19]

Those recruited include Dr. Sally Ride, the first American female astronaut, and United States Air Force Colonel Guion Bluford, the first African-American astronaut, as well as Dr. Judith Resnik and Dr. Ronald McNair, who both flew successful missions during the Space Shuttle program before their deaths in the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster on January 28, 1986. Recruits also included Charles Bolden, the current NASA administrator, and Lori Garver, the current Deputy Administrator.[19]

An enthusiastic advocate of space exploration, Nichols has served since the mid-1980s on the Board of Governors of the National Space Society, a nonprofit, educational space advocacy organization founded by Dr. Wernher von Braun.[17]

Gloria marie steinem born march 25 1934 is an @awesome-women

Gloria Marie Steinem (born March 25, 1934) is an American feminist, journalist, and social and political activist who became nationally recognized as a leader of, and media spokeswoman for, the women’s liberation movement in the late 1960s and 1970s. A prominent writer and political figure, Steinem has founded many organizations and projects and has been the recipient of many awards and honors. She was a columnist for New York magazine and co-founded Ms. magazine. In 1969, she published an article, After Black Power, Women’s Liberation which, along with her early support of abortion rights, catapulted her to national fame as a feminist leader. In 2005, Steinem worked alongside Jane Fonda and Robin Morgan to co-found the Women’s Media Center, an organization that works to amplify the voices of women in the media through advocacy, media and leadership training, and the creation of original content. Steinem currently serves on the board of the organization. She continues to involve herself in politics and media affairs as a commentator, writer, lecturer, and organizer, campaigning for candidates and reforms and publishing books and articles.

Fuckyeahhistorycrushes the woman who made your @awesome-women


The woman who made your Wifi work.

Hedy Lamarr (/ˈhɛdi/; 9 November 1913 – 19 January 2000) was an Austrian-American actress, celebrated for her great beauty, who was a major contract star of MGM’s “Golden Age”.[1] When she worked with Max Reinhardt in Berlin, he called her the “most beautiful woman in Europe” due to her “strikingly dark exotic looks”, a sentiment widely shared by her audiences and critics.[2][3][4] She gained fame after starring in Gustav Machatý’s Ecstasy, a film which featured closeups of her character during orgasm in one scene, as well as full frontal nude shots of her in another scene, both very unusual for the socially conservative period in which the bulk of her career took place.

Mathematically talented, Lamarr also co-invented—with composer George Antheil—an early technique for spread spectrum communications and frequency hopping, necessary for wireless communication from the pre-computer age to the present day.[5][6]

Avant garde composer George Antheil, a son of German immigrants and neighbor of Lamarr, had experimented with automated control of musical instruments, including his music for Ballet Mécanique, originally written for Fernand Léger’s 1924 abstract film. This score involved multiple player pianos playing simultaneously.

Lamarr took her idea to Antheil and together, Antheil and Lamarr submitted the idea of a secret communication system in June 1941. On August 11, 1942, US Patent 2,292,387 was granted to Antheil and “Hedy Kiesler Markey”, Lamarr’s married name at the time. This early version of frequency hopping used a piano roll to change between 88 frequencies and was intended to make radio-guided torpedoes harder for enemies to detect or jam. Although a presentation of the technique was soon made to the U.S. Navy, it met with opposition and was not adopted.[23]

The idea was not implemented in the USA until 1962, when it was used by U.S. military ships during a blockade of Cuba after the patent had expired. Perhaps owing to this lag in development, the patent was little-known until 1997, when the Electronic Frontier Foundation gave Lamarr an award for this contribution.[6] It is reported that, in 1998, Ottawa wireless technology developer Wi-LAN, Inc. “acquired a 49 percent claim to the patent from Lamarr for an undisclosed amount of stock” (Eliza Schmidkunz, Inside GNSS),[24] although expired patents have no economic value. Antheil had died in 1959.

Lamarr’s and Antheil’s frequency-hopping idea serves as a basis for modern spread-spectrum communication technology, such as Bluetooth, COFDM used in Wi-Fi network connections, and CDMA used in some cordless and wireless telephones.[25] Blackwell, Martin, and Vernam’s 1920 patent Secrecy Communication System (1598673) seems to lay the communications groundwork for Kiesler and Antheil’s patent, which employed the techniques in the autonomous control of torpedoes.

Lamarr wanted to join the National Inventors Council, but was reportedly told by NIC member Charles F. Kettering and others that she could better help the war effort by using her celebrity status to sell War Bonds.

Aung san suu kyi mp ac burmese mlcts aung @awesome-women

Aung San Suu Kyi MP AC (Burmese: AungSanSuuKyi1.png; MLCTS: aung hcan: cu. krany, /ŋˌsæn.sˈ/,[2]Burmese pronunciation: [àʊɴ sʰáɴ sṵ tɕì]; born 19 June 1945) is a Burmese opposition politician and chairperson of the National League for Democracy (NLD) in Burma. In the 1990 general election, the NLD won 59% of the national votes and 81% (392 of 485) of the seats in Parliament.[3][4][5][6][7][8][9] She had, however, already been detained under house arrest before the elections. She remained under house arrest in Burma for almost 15 of the 21 years from 20 July 1989 until her most recent release on 13 November 2010,[10] becoming one of the world’s most prominent political prisoners.[11]

Suu Kyi received the Rafto Prize and the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought in 1990 and the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991. In 1992 she was awarded the Jawaharlal Nehru Award for International Understanding by the government of India and the International Simón Bolívar Prize from the government of Venezuela. In 2007, the Government of Canada made her an honorary citizen of that country;[12] at the time, she was one of only four people ever to receive the honor.[13] In 2011, she was awarded the Wallenberg Medal.[14] According to the reports, Aung San Suu Kyi would receive the highest US award, the Congressional Gold Medal, on her visit to the USA in September 2012.[15]

On 1 April 2012, her party, the National League for Democracy, announced that she was elected to the Pyithu Hluttaw, the lower house of the Burmese parliament, representing the constituency of Kawhmu;[16] her party also won 43 of the 45 vacant seats in the lower house.[17] The election results were confirmed by the official electoral commission the following day.[18]

Hélène dutrieu 10 july 1877 26 june 1961 was @awesome-women

Hélène Dutrieu (10 July 1877 – 26 June 1961), was a cycling world champion, stunt cyclist, stunt motorcyclist, automobile racer, stunt driver, pioneer aviator, wartime ambulance driver, and director of a military hospital.[1][2]

Dutrieu became a professional track cyclist racing for the Simpson Lever Chain team. In 1895 she gained the women’s world record for distance cycled in one hour. In 1897 and 1898 she won the women’s speed track cycling world championship in Ostend, Belgium, and earned the nickname “La Flèche Humaine” (“The Human Arrow”). In August 1898 she won the Grand Prix d’Europe (Grand Prix of Europe) and in November of that year she won the Course de 12 Jours (12-day race) in London, England. Leopold II of Belgium awarded Dutrieu the Cross of St André with diamonds in honour of her cycling success.

On 19 April 1910 she reputedly became the first woman pilot to fly with a passenger. On 25 November 1910 Dutrieu became the fourth woman in the world, and the first Belgian woman, licensed as an aeroplane pilot, receiving Aéro-Club de Belgique (Aero Club of Belgium) licence #27. Her appearances at air shows earned her the nickname the “Girl Hawk”. There was a minor scandal early in her aviation career when it was revealed to the press that she did not wear a corset while flying. In September 1910 Dutrieu flew non-stop from Ostend to Bruges, Belgium.

In September 1911 Dutrieu travelled to the United States with her Henry Farman type III biplane. She competed for the women’s altitude record and the Rodman-Wanamaker trophy, subsequently won by Matilde Moisant, at the Nassau Boulevard airfield meeting in Garden City, New York. In the same year Dutrieu beat 14 male pilots to win the Coppa del Re (King’s Cup) in Florence, Italy. In 1912 she reputedly became the first woman to pilot a seaplane. Later the same year she won a prize in competition against four other seaplane pilots, including Réne Caudron, at Ouchy-Lausanne, Switzerland. In 1913 Dutrieu became the first woman aviator awarded membership of the Légion d'honneur (French Legion of Honour).

During World War I Dutrieu became an ambulance driver. Général Février put her in charge of the ambulances at Messimi Hospital. She later became the director of Campagne à Val-de Grâce military hospital. After the war she became a journalist. In 1922 she married Pierre Mortier and took French nationality. She later became vice president of the women’s section of the Aéro-Club de France (Aero Club of France). In 1953 she was awarded the Médaille de l'Aéronautique (French Medal for Aeronautics).[citation needed] In 1956 she created the Coupe Hélène Dutrieu-Mortier (Hélène Dutrieu-Mortier Cup) with a prize of 200,000 francs for the French or Belgian woman pilot who made the longest non-stop flight each year.

Wangari muta maathai 1 april 1940 25 september @awesome-women

Wangari Muta Maathai (1 April 1940 – 25 September 2011) was a Kenyan environmental and political activist. She was educated in the United States at Mount St. Scholastica and the University of Pittsburgh, as well as the University of Nairobi in Kenya. In the 1970s, Maathai founded the Green Belt Movement, an environmental non-governmental organization focused on the planting of trees, environmental conservation, and women’s rights. In 1986, she was awarded the Right Livelihood Award, and in 2004, she became the first African woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize for “her contribution to sustainable development, democracy and peace.” Maathai was an elected member of Parliament and served as assistant minister for Environment and Natural Resources in the government of President Mwai Kibaki between January 2003 and November 2005. Furthermore she was an Honorary Councillor of the World Future Council. In 2011, Maathai died of complications from ovarian cancer.

“ Maathai stood up courageously against the former oppressive regime in Kenya. Her unique forms of action have contributed to drawing attention to political oppression—nationally and internationally. She has served as inspiration for many in the fight for democratic rights and has especially encouraged women to better their situation.”

—The Norwegian Nobel Committee, in a statement announcing her as the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize winner.[60]

Mrs lora wagner was a married new york city @awesome-women

Mrs. Lora Wagner was a married New York City teacher who protested the New York City policy of suspending teachers who became mothers. She gave birth just 13 hours after leaving the classroom; while still recovering, she wrote to the mayor, asking him to direct the Board of Education to change their policies about teachers and maternity leave. See:

Patricia Carter, “Becoming the ‘New Women’: the Equal Rights Campaigns of New York City Schoolteachers, 1900-1920,” in Richard Altenbaugh, ed., The Teacher’s Voice: A Social History of Teaching in Twentieth-Century America (Psychology Press 1992): 54.


Henrietta rodman was a feminist and teacher in new @awesome-women

Henrietta Rodman was a feminist and teacher in New York City, vice president of the League for the Civic Service of Women, who protested the ban on married women teachers by marrying a friend in 1914, SOLELY to challenge the law (her husband’s girlfriend was cool with this plan). Friend Floyd Dell noted wryly, “she couldn’t even do so conventional a thing as get married, without creating a terrific sensation.” She was suspended for more than a year. The clothing above was typical of her dress-reform style – heavy sack-like tunics and boots (linen sacks and sandals in the summertime).

Sources on Henrietta Rodman include: Julie C. Laible, “Henrietta Rodman and Other Modern
Feminists: Redefining the New Professional Teacher,” Journal of the Midwest History of Education Society 22(1995): 229-239; June Sochen, “Henrietta Rodman and the Feminist Alliance, 1914-1917,”Journal of Popular Culture 4(1)(Summer 1970): 57-65.


Navanethem navi pillay born 23 september 1941 @awesome-women

Navanethem “Navi” Pillay (born 23 September 1941) is the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. A South African of Indian origin, she was the first non-white woman on the High Court of South Africa,[1] and she has also served as a judge of the International Criminal Court and President of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. Her four-year term as High Commissioner for Human Rights began on 1 September 2008.[2]

In 1967, Pillay became the first non-white[9] woman to open her own law practice in Natal Province.[1] She says she had no other alternative: “No law firm would employ me because they said they could not have white employees taking instructions from a coloured person”.[4] As a non-white lawyer under the Apartheid regime, she was not allowed to enter a judge’s chambers.[4]

During her 28 years as a lawyer in South Africa, she defended anti-Apartheid activists[10] and helped expose the use of torture[10] and poor conditions of political detainees.[4] When her husband was detained under the Apartheid laws, she successfully sued to prevent the police from using unlawful methods of interrogation against him.[3] In 1973, she won the right for political prisoners on Robben Island, including Nelson Mandela, to have access to lawyers.[5] She co-founded the Advice Desk for the Abused and ran a shelter for victims of domestic violence. As a member of the Women’s National Coalition, she contributed to the inclusion in South Africa’s Constitution of an equality clause prohibiting discrimination on the grounds of race, religion and sexual orientation. In 1992, she co-founded the international women’s rights group Equality Now.

In 1995, the year after the African National Congress came to power, Mandela nominated Pillay as the first non-white woman to serve on the High Court of South Africa.[1][4] She noted that “the first time I entered a judge’s chambers was when I entered my own.”[5]

Her tenure on the High Court was short, however, as she was soon elected by the United Nations General Assembly to serve as a judge at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR).[4][11] She served for eight years, including four years as president.[11] She was the only female judge for the first four years of the tribunal.[12] Her tenure on the ICTR is best remembered for her role in the landmark trial of Jean-Paul Akayesu, which established that rape and sexual assault could constitute acts of genocide.[8][12][13][14] Pillay said in an interview, “From time immemorial, rape has been regarded as spoils of war. Now it will be considered a war crime. We want to send out a strong signal that rape is no longer a trophy of war.”[13]

In February 2003, she was elected to the first ever panel of judges of the International Criminal Court and assigned to the Appeals Division.[11] She was elected to a six-year term, but resigned in August 2008 in order to take up her position with the UN.[15]

On 24 July 2008, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon nominated Pillay to succeed Louise Arbour as High Commissioner for Human Rights.[16] The United States reportedly resisted her appointment at first, because of her views on abortion and other issues, but eventually dropped its opposition.[10] At a special meeting on 28 July 2008, the UN General Assembly confirmed the nomination by consensus.[2] Her four-year term began on 1 September 2008.[2] Pillay says the High Commissioner is “the voice of the victim everywhere.”[4]

Reverend doctor anna howard shaw minister @awesome-women

Reverend Doctor Anna Howard Shaw, minister, physician, ardent feminist, and masterful orator, worked to improve individual morality through her ministry, tried to improve society by moving into the temperance and suffrage movements, and finally campaigned vigorously for the League of Nations to promote world peace.

Essentially self-taught, Shaw’s first career, to help support her family, was as a frontier school teacher. Her father having let the family down on several occasions, at the age of twelve Shaw had to assume the burden of the survival of her semi-invalid mother and her siblings. From this experience, Shaw developed both a low opinion of men’s abilities and an ambition to excel in a man’s world, passions that helped shape her career. After the Civil War, she was able to move into the home of a married sister and attend high school. She became active in the Methodist church, preaching her first sermon when she was twenty-three and becoming a licensed to preach a year later.

In 1873, she entered Albion College, paying for her two years of education there by preaching and giving lectures on temperance. In 1876, she left Albion to attend Boston Theological Seminary. Upon graduation, in 1878, as the only woman in her class, she took charge of a church in East Dennis, Massachusetts, but the General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church refused her application for ordination because she was a woman. It also took steps to revoke her preaching license. Finally, in 1880, Shaw convinced the Methodist Protestant Church to grant her ordination so she could administer the sacraments and continue her ministry in East Dennis.

In addition to ministering at two churches, Shaw earned a medical degree from Boston University in 1886. However, she never practiced medicine. Instead, she resigned her pastorates in 1885 to take up the banners of temperance and women’s suffrage. From the 1880s until her death in 1919, Shaw worked at the grass roots level throughout the country to achieve women’s suffrage. For a few years she headed the Franchise Department of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union. In 1904 she became president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association.

During World War I, Shaw turned her attention to foreign affairs. She became chair of the Woman’s Committee of the United States Council of National Defense, coordinating women’s contributions to the war effort. For this work, in 1919 she became the first woman to earn the Distinguished Service Medal. At the end of the war, at the request of President Woodrow Wilson and former President William Howard Taft, she lectured in the United States and Europe in support of world peace and the League of Nations.

It was during one of those speaking tours that she fell ill and died in July, 1919, at the age of seventy-two. While Shaw died just before the Women’s Suffrage Amendment was ratified, she fulfilled her vision of success: “Nothing bigger can come to a human being than to love a great cause more than life itself.”

Ethel l payne august 14 1911 may 28 1991 @awesome-women

Ethel L. Payne (August 14, 1911 – May 28, 1991) was an African-American journalist. Known as the “First Lady of the Black Press”, she was a columnist, lecturer, and freelance writer. She combined advocacy with journalism as she reported on the civil rights movement during the 1950s and 1960s. She became the first female African-American commentator employed by a national network when CBS hired her in 1972. In addition to her reporting of American domestic politics, she also covered international stories.

Payne earned a reputation as an aggressive journalist who asked tough questions. She once asked President Dwight D. Eisenhower when he planned to ban segregation in interstate travel. The President’s angry response that he refused to support special interests made headlines and helped push civil rights issues to the forefront of national debate.

In 1966, she traveled to Vietnam to cover African-American troops, who were involved in much of the fighting. She subsequently covered the Nigerian civil war and the International Women’s Year Conference in Mexico City, and accompanied Secretary of State Henry Kissinger on a six-nation tour of Africa.[1]

In 1972 she became the first African-American woman radio and television commentator on a national network, working on CBS’s program Spectrum from 1972 to 1978, and after that with Matters of Opinion until 1982.

On May 28, 1991, at the age 79, Payne died of a heart attack at her home in Washington, D.C.

Marie louise bottineau baldwin 1863 1952 in @awesome-women
Marie Louise Bottineau Baldwin.

In 1914, Marie Louise, a member of the Turtle Mountain Chippewa Band became Washington College of Law’s first Native American (Metis) student to graduate. Marie Louise as the daughter of Jean Baptiste Bottineau, enrolled Turtle Mountain Band member and lawyer for the band. Her mother was Marguerite Renville (b. Jan. 13, 1842 at Pembina), the daughter of François Renville and Marguerite Dumas Belgarde. They married on November 17, 1862 at St.Joseph. The family was issued Half Breed Scrip under the amendments of the 1864 Old Crossing Treaty. The children listed are Marie Louise born 1863, Lillian born 1867 and Alvina Clementa born 1868.

Marie Louise Bottineau-Baldwin was the first woman of color to graduate from the Washington College Law School. The WCL student organization raises funds to support the Marie Bottineau Baldwin Scholarship, which honors her achievement. Marie Louise went on to become a prominent advocate of Native American Indian causes in the Office of Indian Affairs. Her appointment to a position with the Bureau of Indian Affairs was approved by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1904. She was an accountant in the Education Division of the Bureau and Treasurer of the Society of American Indians. Marie Louise was admitted to the bar in 1914, having completed the three years of courses during two years of attending evening classes. She also graduated with highest distinction. The Quarterly Journal of American Indians noted that “Mrs. Baldwin, who is Treasurer of the Society of American Indians, has offered herself to the War Department for services overseas. She speaks French as fluently as English, and her skill as an accountant will make her valuable to the accounting staff.”

Indias olympic hopes largely rest on the @awesome-women

India’s Olympic hopes largely rest on the shoulders of several extremely talented women. These women are not only experts in their field, but they are also trailblazers for women’s athletics in India.

From top left to bottom right:

Krishna Poonia

At 30 years old, Krishna Poonia is looking to capture an Olympic gold medal in the discus throw. She broke out onto the international seen in 2006 and entered the Beijing Olympics as a medal contender but failed to make the finals. The mother of a ten-year-old son, Poonia is looking forward to settling down and spending time with her son after these Olympics. However, Poonia admits that her son is one of her most avid fans. Poonia made history by becoming India’s first female athlete to win the discus throw at a major international tournament history when she won gold at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in New Delhi.

Saina Nehwal

Ranked fifth in the world, Saina Nehwal is determined to give the Chinese, historically the best at badminton, a run for their money. Four years ago, she became the first Indian woman to make to the quarterfinals of an individual event at the Olympics. Nehwal, who treats herself to ice cream and a shopping spree after a win, hopes to make it all the way to the finals this time around.

Deepika Kumari

As of June, Deepika Kumari is ranked number one in the world in archery. She is the first Indian archer to ever attain this title. The fact that she is only eighteen years old makes the feat even more impressive. She first discovered her knack for archery by shooting mangoes off of local trees with self-made bamboo bows and arrows. Now, Kumari is heading to her first Olympics as a medal contender.

M.C. Mary Kom

Most children can’t say that their mother is a world champion boxer. However, that is not the case for the twin boys of M.C. Mary Kom. The five-time world boxing champion is the only woman boxer heading to the London Olympics for India. Kom was named the 38th most marketable athlete by SportsPro and is the first woman to achieve the honorary rank of lieutenant colonel in the Territorial Army. Kom has her sight set on Olympic gold and plans to fight her way there.

Doveilmiosoldi native american women in the @awesome-women


Native American women in the London 2012 Olympics! from top to bottom, right to left:

Mary Killman, US synchronized swimming (Potawatomi)

Mary Killman (right), born in Ada, Oklahoma, 21, was a member of the USA Synchro Junior Nationals Team in 2008 and was named the USA Synchro Athlete of the Year in 2010 and 2011. “Representing the United States is an amazing honor,” she said. “To be able to not only represent my country, but also my sport, and have a bit of Native American pride as well just makes it all better!” 

All the hard work and training she has put into making it to where she’s at today has been lined with confidence, something she feels is crucial to success. “The most powerful thing you can have is confidence in yourself,” says Killman. “There are always going to be rough times but if you keep pushing and just believe you can, you can achieve things you’ve only dreamed about. This works in not only athletics but in life in general. I’ve worked years trying to make my dream a reality and it’s finally coming true.”

One of Killman’s heroes is the above-mentioned Thorpe. “He’s definitely someone who had to work insanely hard to get every bit of recognition he got. He’s proof that you can do anything if you set your mind to it…I’ve always been brought up with something my dad always said, ‘rather you can see yourself doing or not, you’re right.” 

Mary Spencer, Canada boxing (Ojibway)

The 2012 London games marks the debut of women’s boxing and First Nation Ojibway Mary Spencer set off as one of Canada’s best bets; a sure contender for gold. Spencer nearly lost her chance of competing in this year’s game after a surprising and disappointing first round loss at the women’s world championships in China that served as the qualifier for the 2012 Olympics. A few agonizing weeks later, she learned she had been awarded the wild card and became the lone Americas Continental group selection by the Tripartite Commission in the middleweight (75kg) class. 

Spencer began boxing in 2002 at the age of 17. In an interview with the International Amateur Boxing Association she said, “I was always a sports fanatic and I took up boxing after my basketball season ended and I wanted to keep in shape. Since then I have not looked back, the energy in boxing is unrivalled in sports.” 

From her beginning days in the sport, she has been described as a natural and very quickly started training under three-time Olympic coach Charlie Stewart at the Windsor Amateur Boxing Club in Ontario, Canada. Under his guidance and her hardwork, she’s become an 8-time nation champion, 3-time world champion and 5-time Pan-American champion. 

Not only is she a fierce fighter in the ring, she’s proof positive there’s true splendor in being a strong woman as she was named as an ambassador for Cover Girl. Of the endorsement Cover Girls says they are, “proud to support Mary Spencer to help celebrate the power and strength in beauty.” She is also a member of the Motivate Canada’s GEN7 Aboriginal role model initiative. Her participation in the program includes developing sport, physical activity and empowerment programming with Aboriginal youth in First Nation communities in Ontario. 

Tumua Anae, US water polo (Hawaiian)

Tumua Anae heads into the 2012 games as the goalie for the US National Water Polo team. Anae, full name Tumuaialli Anea, is a Native Hawaiian whose grandfather emigrated there from Samoa in the 1920’s. 

Tumua attended the University of Southern California where she majored in broadcast journalism. While at USC, she played goalie for their water polo team all four years of her college career and then began training with the National team the summer after her senior year. One the road to becoming an Olympic athlete, Tumua racked in honors with her incredible talent in the pool. Among other things, she was part of the 2005 and 2006 CIF Water Polo Champions Division II, a finalist for the 2010 Peter J. Cutino Award and 2010 NCAA champion. More recently, she had 8 saves as backup goalie at the 2011 FINA World Championships as well as the 2011 FINA World League Super Final, in which she won gold, 7 saves in Team USA’s gold medal win at the 2011 Pan American Games, and a whopping 16 saves at the 2012 FINA World League Super Final. Finally, in May of this year, she was selected to the Olympic team as backup to Betsey Armstrong, whom many consider the best women’s water polo player in the world.

Adrienne Lyle, US dressage (Cherokee)

Adrienne Lyle, a Cherokee Nation citizen, comes to her first Olympic games as one of America’s youngest dressage riders at the age of 27 in a sport that commonly has Olympians double her age. She earned her spot by placing fourth-place at the U.S. Equestrian Federation Dressage Festival of Champions and USEF Dressage Olympic Selection Trials while riding Wizard, a 13-year-old Oldenburg gelding by Weltmeyer. 

Lyle, coming from humble beginnings being raised on a small cattle ranch in Whidbey Island, Wash., shot to stardom in the dressage world after working some with Debbie McDonald (an extremely successful dressage rider in her own right) as a working student at Peggy and Parry Thomas’s River Grove Farm in Idaho in 2005, in 2006 as a fulltime assistant trainer and then competing with Wizard in their first Grand Prix in 2009.

These young women exemplify where hard work, discipline and the courage to put your dreams in motion can lead to. Many throughout Indian Country will be keeping an eye on these ladies as they strive for gold in these coming weeks. 

Gaypocalypse 22 year old idalys ortiz of cuba @awesome-women


22-year-old Idalys Ortiz of Cuba, 2012 Olympic women’s heavyweight judo champion. Ortiz is the first woman not from China or Japan to claim the title.

Olympic fencer shin a lam refuses to leave the @awesome-women

Olympic fencer Shin A Lam refuses to leave the floor after unfair ruling.

Germany’s Britta Heidemann and South Korea’s Shin A Lam had already fought to a draw in regulation. Whichever fencer got a touch next would move on to the gold medal round of the Women’s Individual Epeé. There was one second left on the clock in the extra frame.

The Complaint:

The clock never started! So Heidemann had more than one second to land the winning touch. At the very least, whether she landed it in time was highly in doubt. The match should have continued into another round, but instead Shin was declared the loser. So South Korea’s coach went to the judges.

The Ruling:

Despite the clock issue, they ruled that the touch was good and that Heidemann was the victor. South Korea’s coach went off to file a formal appeal.

And Shin A Lam, now in tears, refused to live the piste (the platform that they fence on). In fencing, leaving the piste means that you have officially accepted the judges’ ruling. And seeing as the clock didn’t start, and she should still have a shot at gold, she sat down. It’s the filibuster of fencing.

She waited.

And waited.

And waited.

An Olympic Fencer Refuses To Leave The Floor After Getting Screwed

And waited. For 45 minutes, Shin refused to live the piste.

Heidemann didn’t know what to do. She communicated with her coaches, but it was clear she was growing impatient. It’s hard to blame her. She had been named the winner and so had a gold medal match to prepare for, but obviously whether or not she was actually the winner was still in question.

After 45 minutes, a judge came out with the ruling that the Korean appeal had been lost and that Shin had to vacate the piste. She didn’t.

Shin stood up defiant, resulting in one of the more striking images of these Olympics.

Security came out and took Shin away. The crowd gave her a standing ovation.

Shin went on to lose her bronze medal match.

Kryptoswag marlen esparza an olympic boxer and @awesome-women


Marlen Esparza, an Olympic boxer and one of the best female boxers in the world.  She will be competing at the 2012 Olympics where it will be the first time that women’s boxing will be featured at the event.  She’s currently ranked #1 in the U.S. at her weight class and has a really good shot at a gold medal.

In july 2012 shree bose the grand prize winner @awesome-women

In July 2012, Shree Bose, the grand prize winner of the 2011 Google Science Fair, traveled to CERN headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland as part of the grand prize. We invited Shree to write about her experience.

CERN is the European Organization for Nuclear Research. The name CERN is derived from the acronym for the French Conseil Européen pour la Recherche Nucléaire.

Shree has recently been honoured as the Grand Prize winner of the Google Global Science Fair, an online science competition open to students aged 13 to 18 that Google organizes in partnership with CERN, LEGO, National Geographic and Scientific American. She has just graduated from high school and last year she was the finalist of Google’s competition for her project on the effect of the chemotherapy drug cisplatin on ovarian cancer cells. Shree visited CERN as part of her prize from the Google Science Fair and she had the chance to visit several experimental sites and meet with physicists and engineers. We met her during her visit to ALICE Control Room at Point 2 and asked her about the feeling of being a scientist from a young age, what motivated her in cancer research and her future plans.

Jtotheizzoe meet brittany wenger google science @awesome-women


Meet Brittany Wenger, Google Science Fair 2012 Winner and All-Around Awesome Person

Florida teen develops artificial intelligence breast cancer detection tool

If we lived in a just world, 17 year-old Brittany Wenger would have endorsement contracts, too many cars and an assistant. You know, if she wanted them. Because this is what a role model looks like. She’s this year’s winner of the Google Science Fair, and must add that I’m jealous of that Lego trophy.

Far from being an exception, Brittany exemplifies the quality of her fellow finalists. Looking through this year’s list of top projects, I can’t help but notice how stunningly intelligent and confident all the competitors are.

Brittany developed an artificial neural network (a “software brain” of sorts) to help doctors take what used to be a safer but less reliable form of biopsy and turn it into a highly successful tool for detecting breast cancer. You can experience her program here.

Seem out of reach? Brittany explains where she got her inspiration:

In school we were researching the future, and my part of the future that I was researching was future technologies. I grew fascinated by artificial intelligence, which I came across. I went home that night, and I bought a computer programming book and, with no experience, decided that was what I was going to do with the rest of my life.

Congrats to her and all this year’s finalists. And congrats to everyone who was inspired to do projects this year and will be inspired in years to come.

I’m with Neil, I’m not worried about young people. This proves why.

( Budding Scientist)

Nominated by president barack obama and confirmed @awesome-women

Nominated by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Lori Beth Garver began her duties as the deputy administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration on July 17, 2009.

As deputy administrator, Garver is NASA’s second in command. She works closely with the administrator to provide overall leadership, planning, and policy direction for the agency. Together with the NASA administrator, Garver represents NASA to the Executive Office of the President, Congress, heads of government agencies, international organizations, and external organizations and communities. She also oversees the work of NASA’s functional offices.

Garver’s confirmation as deputy administrator marks the second time she has worked for NASA. Her first period of service to the agency was from 1996 to 2001. She first served as a special assistant to the NASA administrator and senior policy analyst for the Office of Policy and Plans, before becoming the associate administrator for the Office of Policy and Plans. Reporting to the NASA administrator, she oversaw the analysis, development and integration of policies and long-range plans, the NASA Strategic Management System, and the NASA Advisory Council.

Anita sengupta is the senior systems engineer at @awesome-women

Anita Sengupta is the Senior Systems Engineer at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which is managing the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission that landed the rover Curiosity on the surface of Mars on Aeolis Palus in Gale Crater on August 6, 2012 UTC (August 5, 2012 PDT, NASA mission control time).

Roberta bondar oc oont frcp frsc born @awesome-women

Roberta Bondar, OC, O.Ont, FRCP©, FRSC (born December 4, 1945) is Canada’s first female astronaut and the first neurologist in space. Following more than a decade as NASA’s head of space medicine, Bondar became a consultant and speaker in the business, scientific, and medical communities.

Bondar has received many honors including the Order of Canada, the Order of Ontario, the NASA Space Medal, over 22 honorary degrees and induction into the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame.

Roberta Bondar graduated from Sir James Dunn High School in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario and holds a Bachelor of Science in zoology and agriculture from the University of Guelph (1968), a Master of Science in experimental pathology from the University of Western Ontario (1971), a Doctor of Philosophy in neuroscience from the University of Toronto (1974), and an Doctor of Medicine from McMaster University (1977). She is a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada in neurology (1981).[2]

Subsequently, Bondar led an international team of researchers at NASA for more than a decade, examining data obtained from astronauts on space missions to better understand the mechanisms underlying the body’s ability to recover from exposure to space.

She also pursued her interests in photography, with emphasis on natural environments. She is the author of four photo essay books featuring her photography of the Earth, including Passionate Vision (2000), which covered Canada’s national parks.[5]

Dr. Bondar has also been a consultant and speaker to diverse organizations, drawing on her expertise as an astronaut, physician, scientific researcher, photographer, author, environment interpreter and team leader. Respected for her expertise and commentary, Bondar has been a guest of television and radio networks throughout the U.S. and Canada. She is featured in the IMAX movie Destiny in Space, and has also co-anchored the Discovery Channel’s coverage of space shuttle launches.

Bondar served two terms as the Chancellor of Trent University, from 2003 to 2009.[6]

On June 28, 2011 it was announced that Bondar will receive a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame and will be inducted on October 1 at Elgin Theatre in Toronto. She will be the first astronaut to receive the honour.
Valentina vladimirovna tereshkova russian @awesome-women

Valentina Vladimirovna Tereshkova (Russian: Валенти́на Влади́мировна Терешко́ва; born March 6, 1937) is a retired Soviet cosmonaut, and was the first woman in space. She was selected out of more than four hundred applicants, and then out of five finalists, to pilot Vostok 6 on the 16 June 1963, becoming both the first woman and the first civilian to fly in space,[1] as she was only honorarily inducted into the Soviet Air Force as a condition on joining the Cosmonaut Corps. During her three-day mission, she performed various tests on herself to collect data on the female body’s reaction to spaceflight.

Before being recruited as a cosmonaut, Tereshkova was a textile factory assembly worker and an amateur parachutist. After the dissolution of the first group of female cosmonauts in 1969, she became a prominent member of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, holding various political offices. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, she stayed in politics and remains revered as a heroine in post-Soviet Russia.

After her flight, she studied at the Zhukovsky Air Force Academy and graduated with distinction as a cosmonaut engineer. In 1977 she earned a doctorate in engineering. Due to her prominence she was chosen for several political positions: from 1966 to 1974 she was a member of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union, from 1974 to 1989 a member of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet, and from 1969 to 1991 she was in the Central Committee of the Communist Party. In 1997 she was retired from the air force and the cosmonaut corps by presidential order.

After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Tereshkova lost her political office but none of her prestige. To this day, she is revered as a heroine, and to some her importance in Russian space history is only surpassed by Yuri Gagarin and Alexey Leonov. Since her retirement from politics, she appears infrequently at space-related events, and appears to be content with being out of the limelight.

Kathryn dwyer sullivan born october 3 1951 in @awesome-women

Kathryn Dwyer Sullivan (born October 3, 1951 in Paterson, New Jersey) is an American geologist and a former NASA astronaut. A crew member on three Space Shuttle missions, she is the first American woman to walk in space.

In 1988, Sullivan joined the U.S. Naval Reserve as an oceanography officer, retiring with the rank of Captain in 2006. She has served as chief scientist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Before NASA, Sullivan worked in Alaska as an oceanographer.

Sullivan performed the first EVA by an American woman during Space Shuttle Challenger mission STS-41-G on October 11, 1984. She flew on three space shuttle missions and logged 532 hours in space.

After leaving NASA, Sullivan served as President and CEO of the COSI Columbus, an interactive science center in Columbus, Ohio. Dr. Sullivan currently serves as Director for Ohio State University’s Battelle Center for Mathematics and Science Education Policy and as a volunteer science advisor to COSI. She was appointed to the National Science Board by President Bush in 2004.

In January 2011, The White House sent to the Senate the nomination of Sullivan by President Barack Obama to be an assistant secretary of commerce. Sullivan was first nominated in December 2010, but because the Senate didn’t approve her nomination and a bevy of others forwarded late in December, the White House renewed the formal requests.

On May 4, 2011, Dr. Sullivan, was confirmed by unanimous consent of the U.S. Senate and appointed by President Obama to serve as assistant secretary of commerce for environmental observation and prediction and deputy administrator for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Mae carol jemison born october 17 1956 is an @awesome-women

Mae Carol Jemison (born October 17, 1956) is an American physician and NASA astronaut. She became the first black woman to travel in space when she went into orbit aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour on September 12, 1992. After her medical education and a brief general practice, Jemison served in the Peace Corps from 1985 to 1987. She resigned from NASA in 1993 to form a company researching the application of technology to daily life. She has appeared on television several times, including as an actor in an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. She is a dancer, and holds 9 honorary doctorates in science, engineering, letters, and the humanities.

After the flight of Sally Ride in 1983, Jemison felt the astronaut program had opened up, so she applied.[1] Jemison’s inspiration for joining NASA was African-American actress Nichelle Nichols, who portrayed Lieutenant Uhura on Star Trek.

Because of her love of dance and as a salute to creativity,[1] Jemison took a poster from the Alvin Ailey American Dance Company along with her on the flight.[19] “Many people do not see a connection between science and dance,” says Jemison.[8] “but I consider them both to be expressions of the boundless creativity that people have to share with one another.”[8] Jemison also took several small art objects from West African countries to symbolize that space belongs to all nations.[1] Also on this flight, according to Bessie Coleman biographer Doris L. Rich, Jemison also took into orbit a photo of Coleman—Coleman was the very first Afro-American woman to ever fly an airplane.

Jemison resigned from NASA in March 1993.[10] “I left NASA because I’m very interested in how social sciences interact with technologies,” says Jemison.[20] “People always think of technology as something having silicon in it. But a pencil is technology. Any language is technology. Technology is a tool we use to accomplish a particular task and when one talks about appropriate technology in developing countries, appropriate may mean anything from fire to solar electricity.” In an interview with the Des Moines Register on October 16, 2008 Jemison said that she was not driven to be the “first black woman to go into space.” “I wouldn’t have cared less if 2,000 people had gone up before me … I would still have had my hand up, ‘I want to do this.’”

In 1993 Jemison founded her own company, the Jemison Group that researches, markets, and develops science and technology for daily life.[10] In 1993, Jemison also appeared on an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation.[21] LeVar Burton found out, from a friend that Jemison was a big Star Trek fan and asked her if she’d be interested in being on the show, and she said, “Yeah!!”[22] The result was an appearance as Lieutenant Palmer in the episode “Second Chances”.

Claudie haigneré formerly claudie andré deshays @awesome-women

Claudie Haigneré (formerly Claudie André-Deshays; born 13 May 1957 in Le Creusot, Saône-et-Loire) is a French doctor, politician, and former astronaut with the Centre National d'Études Spatiales (1985–1999) and the European Space Agency (1999–2002).

Haigneré was a back-up crew member for the 1993 Mir Altaïr mission in which her future husband Jean-Pierre Haigneré participated. The asteroid 135268 Haigneré is named in their combined honour. Haigneré visited the Mir space station for 16 days in 1996, as part of the Russian-French Cassiopée mission. In 2001, Haigneré became the first European woman to visit the International Space Station, as part of the Andromède mission. She retired from ESA on June 18, 2002.

Haigneré is a commander of the Légion d’honneur.

Eileen marie collins b november 19 1956 in @awesome-women

Eileen Marie Collins (b. November 19, 1956 in Elmira, New York) is a retired American astronaut and a retired U.S. Air Force Colonel. A former military instructor and test pilot, Collins was the first female pilot and first female commander of a Space Shuttle. She was awarded several medals for her work. Col. Collins has logged 38 days 8 hours and 10 minutes in outer space. Collins retired on May 1, 2006 to pursue private interests, including service as a board member of USAA.

Collins was selected to be an astronaut in 1992 and first flew the Space Shuttle as pilot in 1995 aboard STS-63, which involved a rendezvous between Discovery and the Russian space station Mir. In recognition of her achievement as the first female Shuttle Pilot, she received the Harmon Trophy. She was also the pilot for STS-84 in 1997.

Collins was also the first female commander of a U.S. Spacecraft with Shuttle mission STS-93, launched in July 1999, which deployed the Chandra X-Ray Observatory.[1][2][3][4]

Collins commanded STS-114, NASA’s “return to flight” mission to test safety improvements and resupply the International Space Station (ISS). The flight was launched on July 26, 2005, and returned on August 9, 2005. During STS-114, Collins became the first astronaut to fly the space shuttle through a complete 360-degree pitch maneuver. This was necessary so astronauts aboard the ISS could take photographs of the shuttle’s belly, to ensure there was no threat from debris-related damage to the shuttle upon reentry.

On May 1, 2006, Collins announced that she would leave NASA to spend more time with her family and pursue other interests.[5] Since her retirement from NASA, she has been seen as a Space Shuttle analyst generally covering Shuttle launches and landings for CNN.

Collins has received the Defense Superior Service Medal, Distinguished Flying Cross, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal with one oak leaf cluster, Air Force Commendation Medal with one oak leaf cluster, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal for service in Grenada (Operation Urgent Fury), the French Legion of Honor, NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal and NASA Space Flight Medals, the Free Spirit Award, and the 2006 National Space Trophy. Collins also has an astronomical observatory named in her honor—the Eileen M. Collins Observatory—run by Corning Community College.

Collins is an inductee of the National Women’s Hall Of Fame.[9] She has also been recognized by Encyclopædia Britannica as one of the top 300 women in history who have changed the world.

Ellen lauri ochoa born may 10 1958 is a former @awesome-women

Ellen Lauri Ochoa (born May 10, 1958) is a former astronaut and engineer, and current Deputy Director of the Johnson Space Center

As a pioneer of spacecraft technology, she patented an optical system to detect defects in a repeating pattern. At the NASA Ames Research Center, she led a research group working primarily on optical systems for automated space exploration.

As a doctoral student at Stanford, and later as a researcher at Sandia National Laboratories and NASA Ames Research Center, Ochoa investigated optical system for performing information processing.

Ochoa is a co-inventor on three patents for an optical inspection system, an optical object recognition method, and a method for noise removal in images. As Chief of the Intelligent Systems Technology Branch at Ames, she supervised the 35 engineers scientists in the research and development of computational systems for aerospace missions. Ochoa has presented numerous papers at technical conferences and in scientific journals.

Ochoa became the first Hispanic woman in the world to go to space[2][3] when she served on a nine-day mission aboard the shuttle Discovery in 1993. The astronauts were studying the Earth’s ozone layer.

Her technical assignments in the Astronaut Office includes serving as the crew representative for flight software, computer hardware and robotics, Assistant for Space Station to the Chief of the Astronaut Office, lead spacecraft communicator(CAPCOM) in Mission Control, and as acting as Deputy Chief of the Astronaut Office. A veteran of four Space flights, Ochoa has logged nearly 1,000 hours in space. She was a mission specialist on STS-56 (1993), was payload commander on STS-66, and was mission specialist and flight engineer on STS-96 and STS-110(2002).[4][5] Ochoa was in Mission Control during the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster and was one of the first personnel informed of television coverage showing Columbia’s disintegration.[6] She is currently Deputy Director of the Johnson Space Center, helping to manage and direct the Astronaut Office and Aircraft Operations, and is retired from spacecraft operations.

Peggy annette whitson born february 9 1960 is @awesome-women

Peggy Annette Whitson (born February 9, 1960) is an American biochemistry researcher, NASA astronaut,[1] and NASA’s Chief Astronaut. Her first space mission was in 2002, with an extended stay aboard the International Space Station as a member of Expedition 5. Her second mission launched October 10, 2007, as the first female commander of the ISS with Expedition 16.[2][3] With her two long-duration stays abroad the ISS, Whitson is NASA’s most experienced female astronaut, with just over 376 days in space.[4] This also places her twentieth among all space flyers.

The flight of Space Shuttle mission STS-120, commanded by female astronaut Pam Melroy, was the first time that two female mission commanders have been in orbit at the same time.[5][6][7]

On December 18, 2007, during the fourth spacewalk of Expedition 16 to inspect the S4 starboard Solar Alpha Rotary Joint (SARJ), the ground team in Mission Control informed Whitson that she had become the female astronaut with the most cumulative EVA time in NASA history, as well as the most EVAs, with her fifth EVA. Three hours and 37 minutes into the spacewalk, Whitson surpassed NASA astronaut Sunita Williams with a total time at that point of 29 hours and 18 minutes.[8][9] At the completion of Whitson’s fifth EVA, the 100th in support of ISS assembly and maintenance, Whitson’s cumulative EVA time became 32 hours, and 36 minutes, which placed her in 20th place for total EVA time.

Whitson currently serves as Chief of the Astronaut Office and is responsible for mission preparation activities of International Space Station crews and their support personnel.

Chiaki mukai 向井 千秋 mukai chiaki born may 6 @awesome-women

Chiaki Mukai (向井 千秋 Mukai Chiaki?, born May 6, 1952, Tatebayashi, Gunma, Japan[1]) is a Japanese doctor, and JAXA astronaut.[2] She was the first Japanese woman in space, and was the first Japanese citizen to have two spaceflights.[1] Both were Space Shuttle missions; her first was STS-65 aboard Space Shuttle Columbia in July 1994, which was a Spacelab mission. Her second spaceflight was STS-95 aboard Space Shuttle Discovery in 1998. In total she has spent 23 days in space.

Mukai was selected to be an astronaut by Japanese national space agency NASDA (now called JAXA) in 1985. Prior to this, she was an assistant professor in the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery in Keio University, the oldest university in Japan.

Mukai was assigned the deputy mission scientist for STS-107. In that capacity she coordinated science operations for this science mission.[1][3][4] In 2009 Mukai was a visiting lecturer at the International Space University.

Yi so yeon born june 2 1978 is a south korean @awesome-women

Yi So-yeon (born June 2, 1978) is a South Korean scientist and Ph.D. graduate of KAIST (Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology). On April 8, 2008, she became the first Korean[1] and the second Asian woman (defined as a female resident of a country in Asia at the time of her spaceflight)[2] to fly in space, after Chiaki Mukai. She makes South Korea the third country, after the United Kingdom and Iran, to have a woman as its first space traveler.

After her flight, Yi works as a researcher at KARI as well as acting as Korea’s space ambassador, together with Ko San. She will also receive income from future TV commercials.[18] On 4 October 2008, Yi launched the International Institute of Space Commerce, at a ceremony held in Douglas, Isle of Man.[19] Based on Yi’s track record so early on in her career, she has been listed as one of the 15 Asian Scientists To Watch by Asian Scientist Magazine on 15 May 2011.

You are just your intelligence kalpana chawla @awesome-women

“You are just your intelligence.”

Kalpana Chawla (July 1, 1961 – February 1, 2003) was an Indian-American astronaut who was a mission specialist on the space shuttle Columbia. She first flew on the Columbia in 1997 as a mission specialist and primary robotic arm operator. Chawla was one of seven crew members killed in the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster.

Her first space mission began on November 19, 1997 as part of the six-astronaut crew that flew the Space Shuttle Columbia flight STS-87. Chawla was the first Indian-born woman and the second Indian person to fly in space, following cosmonaut Rakesh Sharma who flew in 1984 in a spacecraft. On her first mission Chawla traveled over 10.4 million miles in 252 orbits of the earth, logging more than 372 hours in space. During STS-87, she was responsible for deploying the Spartan Satellite which malfunctioned, necessitating a spacewalk by Winston Scott and Takao Doi to capture the satellite. A five-month NASA investigation fully exonerated Chawla by identifying errors in software interfaces and the defined procedures of flight crew and ground control.

After the completion of STS-87 post-flight activities, Chawla was assigned to technical positions in the astronaut office to work on the space station, her performance in which was recognized with a special award from her peers.

Sally ride was an american heroine looked up to @awesome-women

Sally Ride was an American heroine, looked up to by a generation of science lovers ever since she made history by blasting into space on NASA’s shuttle Challenger on June 18, 1983. On that day she became the first American woman in space.

But her longtime partner, Dr. Tam E. O'Shaughnessy, is a very accomplished woman in her own right.

O'Shaughnessy was by Sally Ride’s side throughout the astronaut’s 17-month battle against cancer, and before Ride became ill they co-authored four books, including “Mission: Planet Earth: Our World and Its Climate – and How Humans Are Changing Them” and “Voyager: An Adventure to the Edge of the Solar System.”

O'Shaughnessy, a professor emerita of school psychology at San Diego State University, is also chief operating officer and executive vice president of Sally Ride’s foundation, named Sally Ride Science, where the duo and their staff nurtured young students and worked to encourage them to pursue their passions in science, tech, engineering and math.

Like Ride, O'Shaughnessy was interested in science from a very young age, and “one of her favorite childhood memories is of watching tadpoles in a creek gradually sprout legs, go green, and turn into frogs,” according to her bio on the Sally Ride Science website.

After moving on from tadpoles to high school, Tam O'Shaughnessy attended Georgia State University, where she earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in biology. She went on to teach college biology, then went on to earn a Ph.D. in school psychology from the University of California, Riverside, after her interest in the psychology of learning was piqued by her experience as a professor.

Tam O'Shaugnessy has gone on to do many things in her career, writing nine childrens’ science books, as well as helping her partner “found Sally Ride Science because of her long-standing commitment to science education and her recognition of the importance of supporting girls’ interests in science,” according to the foundation’s website.

Sally kristen ride may 26 1951 july 23 2012 @awesome-women

Sally Kristen Ride (May 26, 1951 – July 23, 2012) was an American physicist and a former NASA astronaut. Ride joined NASA in 1978, and in 1983 became the first American woman to enter space. On her first mission at age 32 she was the youngest American to enter space.[1] In 1987 she left NASA to work at Stanford University’s Center for International Security and Arms Control.

During her career, Ride served as the ground-based Capsule Communicator (CapCom) for the second and third Space Shuttle flights (STS-2 and STS-3) and helped develop the Space Shuttle’s robot arm.[3] On June 18, 1983, she became the first American woman in space as a crew member on Space Shuttle Challenger for STS-7. (She was preceded by two Soviet women, Valentina Tereshkova in 1963 and Svetlana Savitskaya in 1982.) On STS-7, during which the five-person crew deployed two communications satellites and conducted pharmaceutical experiments, Ride was the first woman to use the robot arm in space and the first to use the arm to retrieve a satellite. Her second space flight was in 1984, also on board the Challenger. She has spent more than a total of 343 hours in space.

In 1987, Ride left her position in Washington, DC, to work at the Stanford University Center for International Security and Arms Control. In 1989, she became a professor of physics at the University of California, San Diego and Director of the California Space Institute. In 2003, she was asked to serve on the Space Shuttle Columbia Accident Investigation Board. She is currently on leave from the university, and is the President and CEO of Sally Ride Science, a company she founded in 2001, that creates entertaining science programs and publications for upper elementary and middle school students, with a particular focus on girls.

According to Roger Boisjoly, the engineer who warned of the technical problems that led to the Space Shuttle Challenger accident, Ms. Ride was the only public figure to show support for him when he went public with his pre-disaster warnings (after the entire workforce of Morton-Thiokol shunned him). Sally Ride hugged him publicly to show her support for his efforts.

Ride died on July 23, 2012, after a 17-month battle with pancreatic cancer.[20][21] Ride was described as “very private”. Her same-sex relationship with her partner of 27 years, Tam O'Shaughnessy, was revealed in the obituary released by Sally Ride Science and confirmed by Ride’s sister as well as a Sally Ride Science Spokesperson. [22][23]

Kathryn ryan cordell thornton phd born august @awesome-women

Kathryn Ryan Cordell Thornton (Ph.D.) (born August 17, 1952 in Montgomery, Alabama) is an American scientist and a former NASA astronaut with over 975 hours in space, including 21 hours of extravehicular activity. She is currently the Associate Dean for Graduate Programs in the University of Virginia School of Engineering and Applied Science.

Dr. Thornton was a mission specialist on the crew of STS-33 which launched at night from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on November 22, 1989, aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery. The mission carried Department of Defense payloads and other secondary payloads. After 79 orbits of the Earth, this five-day mission concluded on November 27, 1989, at Edwards Air Force Base, California.

On her second flight, Dr. Thornton served on the crew of STS-49, May 7–16, 1992, on board the maiden flight of the new Space Shuttle Endeavour. During the mission the crew conducted the initial test flight of Endeavour, performed a record four EVA’s (space walks) to retrieve, repair and deploy the International Telecommunications Satellite (INTELSAT), and to demonstrate and evaluate numerous EVA tasks to be used for the assembly of Space Station Freedom. Dr. Thornton was one of two EVA crew members who evaluated Space Station assembly techniques on the fourth EVA. STS-49 logged 213 hours in space and 141 Earth orbits prior to landing at Edwards Air Force Base, California.

On her third flight, Dr. Thornton was a mission specialist EVA crew member aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour on the STS-61 Hubble Space Telescope (HST) servicing and repair mission. STS-61 launched at night from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on December 2, 1993. During the 11-day flight, the HST was captured and restored to full capacity through a record five space walks by four astronauts, including Dr. Thornton. After having travelled 4,433,772 miles in 163 orbits of the Earth, the crew of Endeavour returned to a night landing at the Kennedy Space Center on December 13, 1993. Then, after Expedition 14, Sunita Williams surpassed her for woman with the most spacewalks.

Dr. Thornton left NASA on August 1, 1996, to join the faculty of the University of Virginia School of Engineering. She also serves as the director of UVA’s Center for Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Education.

Sunita williams born sunita pandya september 19 @awesome-women

Sunita Williams (born Sunita Pandya; September 19, 1965) is an American astronaut and United States Navy officer who holds the record for longest spaceflight by a woman.[1] She was assigned to the International Space Station as a member of Expedition 14 and then joined Expedition 15.

Williams is the second woman of Indian origin to have been selected by NASA for a space mission after Kalpana Chawla and the second Astronaut of Slovenian origin after Ronald M. Sega. She holds three records as a female space travelers: longest spaceflight (195 days), number of spacewalks (four), and total time spent on spacewalks (29 hours and 17 minutes).

On April 16, 2007, she ran the first marathon by an astronaut in orbit.[18] Williams finished the 2007 Boston Marathon in four hours and 24 minutes .[19][20][21] The other crew members reportedly cheered her on and gave her oranges during the race. Williams’ sister, Dina Pandya, and fellow astronaut Karen L. Nyberg ran the marathon on Earth, and Williams received updates on their progress from Mission Control. In 2008, Williams participated in the Boston Marathon again, this time on Earth.

In September 2007, Williams visited India. She went to the Sabarmati Ashram, the ashram set up by Mahatma Gandhi in 1915, and her ancestral village Jhulasan in Gujarat. She was awarded the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Vishwa Pratibha Award by the World Gujarati Society[26], the first person of Indian origin who is not an Indian citizen to be presented the award. On October 4, 2007, Williams spoke at the American Embassy School, and then met Indian President Pratibha Patil at Rashtrapati Bhavan.

Wu zetian simplified chinese 武则天 traditional @awesome-women

Wu Zetian (simplified Chinese: 武则天; traditional Chinese: 武則天; pinyin: Wǔ Zétiān, Mandarin pronunciation: [ù tsɯ̯ʌ̌ tʰi̯ɛ́n]) (17 February 624[10][12] – 16 December 705[11]), personal name Wu Zhao (武曌), was the only woman in the history of China to assume the title of Empress Regnant (Huangdi). As de facto ruler of China first through her husband and her sons from 665 to 690, not unprecedented in Chinese history, she then broke all precedents when she founded her own dynasty in 690, the Zhou (周) (interrupting the Tang Dynasty), and ruled personally under the name Sacred and Divine Empress Regnant (聖神皇帝) and variations thereof from 690 to 705. Her rise and reign has been criticized harshly by Confucian historians but has been viewed in a different light after the 1950s.

Princess pingyang simplified chinese 平阳公主 @awesome-women

Princess Pingyang (simplified Chinese: 平阳公主; traditional Chinese: 平陽公主; pinyin: Píngyáng Gōngzhǔ), formally Princess Zhao of Pingyang (平陽昭公主) (598 - 623) was the third daughter of Li Yuan the Duke of Tang, a hereditary duke during Sui Dynasty.

In 617, Li Yuan, then the general in charge at Taiyuan was planning to rebel against Emperor Yang of Sui, by whom he had been imprisoned before. He sent messengers to his daughter and son-in-law Chai Shao, then at the Sui capital Chang'an, summoning them back to Taiyuan. Chai worried that they would not be able to escape together easily, and when he consulted her, she told him to go and that she, as a woman, would be able to hide more easily. He therefore secretly headed for Taiyuan and, after first meeting Li Jiancheng and Li Yuanji, whom Li Yuan had similarly recalled from Hedong (河東, in modern Yuncheng, Shanxi), reported to Taiyuan.

Pingyang hid initially, but then distributed her wealth to several hundred men, receiving their loyalty, so she rose in support of Li Yuan. She sent her servant Ma Sanbao (馬三寶) to persuade the agrarian rebel leader He Panren (何潘仁) to join her, and then also persuaded other rebel leaders to join her as well. She attacked and captured some of the nearby cities, and she gathered a total of 70,000 men. Peasants saw her army as one of liberation and offered food and drinks as they passed by.[1]

Late in 617, Li Yuan crossed the Yellow River into the Chang'an region, and he sent Chai Shao to rendezvous with her. They then joined Li Shimin, commanding one wing of Li Yuan’s army. Chai and she set up separate headquarters as commanding generals, and her army became known as the “Army of the Lady.” In 618, Li Yuan had Emperor Yang’s grandson Emperor Gong of Sui yield the throne to him, establishing Tang Dynasty as its Emperor Gaozu. He created her the Princess Pingyang, and as she contributed greatly to his victory, he particularly honored her over his 18 other daughters.

Isabella of france 1295 22 august 1358 @awesome-women

Isabella of France (1295 – 22 August 1358), sometimes described as the She-wolf of France, was Queen consort of England as the wife of Edward II of England. She was the youngest surviving child and only surviving daughter of Philip IV of France and Joan I of Navarre. Queen Isabella was notable at the time for her beauty, diplomatic skills and intelligence.

By 1325, Isabella’s marriage to Edward II was effectively over, and she was facing increasing pressure from Hugh Despenser the younger, Edward’s new royal favourite. With her lands in England seized, her children taken away from her and her household staff arrested, Isabella began to pursue other options. When her brother, King Charles IV of France, seized Edward’s French possessions in 1325, she returned to France, initially as a delegate of the King charged with negotiating a peace treaty between the two countries. However, her presence in France became a focal point for the many nobles opposed to Edward’s reign. Isabella gathered an army to oppose Edward, in alliance with Roger Mortimer, whom she took as a lover. Isabella and Mortimer returned to England with a mercenary army, seizing the country in a lightning campaign. The Despensers were executed, and Edward II forced to abdicate - his eventual fate and possible murder remains of considerable historical debate. Isabella ruled as regent until 1330, when Isabella’s son, Edward deposed Mortimer in turn and ruling directly in his own right.

Crackedcom rani lakshmi bai was born in india @awesome-women

Rani Lakshmi Bai was born in India in 1835, and her dad worked for a prime minister, so she was raised in a royal setting. But unlike most princess types, Lakshmi Bai wasn’t content to just learn needlework and curtsy etiquette. Instead, she spent her youth studying swordsmanship, archery and how to use guns, and also how to find the tightest yellow jumpsuits. Clearly this is all going to come into play later.

Lakshmi Bai was married to her Prince Charming at age 12 (again – yeah, it was a different time) and they adopted a son. But then her husband the raja died soon after. At this point a guy named Lord Jackass cited the Doctrine of Lapse as justification for seizing the rani’s lands. According to the British government (who was occupying India at the time), the princess and her son weren’t of royal blood, so the throne was empty.

Big mistake.

While emotionally recovering from the trauma of losing a husband while also still being a child herself, Rani Lakshmi Bai said “Fuck it” and became a freedom fighter. Her first move was to recruit an army that allowed lady soldiers. Next up, fighting the British! She took her role so seriously that she reportedly went into battle with her adopted son strapped to her back, presumably to drop him off at soccer practice after each fight.

Rani Lakshmi Bai, “the most dangerous of all the rebel leaders,” was eventually killed during the Battle of Gwalior. According to a British report of the battle, she died “firing at the man” who had shot her in the back.

Katharine dexter mccormick a member of the noble @awesome-women

Katharine Dexter McCormick, a member of the noble Dexter family, was married to the son of legendary inventor Cyrus McCormick. Her great-grandfather, Samuel Dexter, was secretary of war under President John Adams and secretary of the treasury under Adams and Jefferson while Samuel W. Dexter, her grandfather, was a co-founder of the University of Michigan.

Mrs. McCormick was a leader in feminist rights. In 1904, she became the second woman to graduate from MIT and the first woman to graduate with a science degree. While at MIT, she refused to wear a hat (which was required of the few women in attendance). Later, she was instrumental in organizing the efforts for women’s suffrage with Carrie Chapman Catt, and used her own money to fund the first birth control pill, during which time she illegally smuggled diaphragms from Europe. She was vice-president of the League of Women Voters, which worked to secure women’s suffrage and helped to create Planned Parenthood. She also led research into schizophrenia, from which her husband was suffering. Her final endeavor, right before her death, provided housing for female students at MIT.

(via the estimable deadbeautyqueen)