Throughout history, there have been many powerful women. Even though women’s history has been mostly overlooked or even obliterated over the years, many women have made significant contributions to society. Women have repeatedly demonstrated that they can rise to the occasion and lead with strength, respect, and empathy when given a chance.
Emmeline Pankhurst was a political activist who led the British suffragette movement in the late 1800s and is credited with helping women achieve the right to vote in the United Kingdom. Pankhurst staged many hunger strikes in 1918, and some British women over the age of 30, who were property owners or university graduates, were granted this right. Pankhurst was named one of Time Magazine’s “100 most important people of the 20th century” in 1999.
Margaret Chase Smith
Margaret Chase Smith, the first woman to stand in both chambers of Congress, earned her most significant enduring victory in 1948 when her Women’s Armed Forces Integration Act was passed, allowing women to serve in the military permanently. But her most significant contribution to history came a few years down the line when she became one of the first republicans to publicly oppose fellow Republican Sen. Smith was the first woman considered for the presidency by a major political party in the United States in 1964.
Shirley Anita Chisholm
Shirley Anita Chisholm was a democratic who served in the house of representatives from 1969 until 1983, representing New York. She was the Black woman elected to Congress and later co-founded the national political Congress of black women. She was an outspoken supporter of racial and gender equality. Chisholm advocated for government assistance to increase daycare hours, improve public education, and pass the school meal bill.
Hillary Rodham Clinton
Hillary Rodham Clinton is a former secretary, New York senator, first lady, and presidential contender from the United States of America. She worked on health care reform, children’s problems, and women’s rights as the first lady. She worked as a legislator to expand health care access, establish independent energy resources, and strengthen security. She was New York’s first female senator and the first New Yorker to serve on the Senate Armed Services Committee.
Adams proved to be the ideal practitioner of “soft power” in an era when women had almost no place in American politics. As the wife of John Adams, she shaped the trajectory of American history with her words and her contacts. Her publications were among the first to lay out arguments for women’s equality, and she was a proponent of increased access to education for young girls.
Clare Boothe Luce
Luce was a complex political figure who began as a writer and intellectual who engaged with liberty circles before becoming one of the most potent and visible advocates for republican presidential candidates. She was a member of Congress in the 1940s and later served as Dwight Eisenhower’s ambassador to Italy and Brazil.
Margaret Hilda Thatcher, Baroness Thatcher, was a British stateswoman who led the Conservative Party from 1975 to 1990 and served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1979 to 1990. She was the first woman and the longest-serving British prime minister of the twentieth century. She was dubbed “The “Iron Lady.”
Patsy Takemoto Mink
Patsy Takemoto Mink was a member of Congress who represented Hawaii from 1965 to 1977 and again from 1989 to 2002. Mink was the woman of color elected to Congress and the first American Asian woman to serve in Congress. Mink, a proponent of gender and racial equality, was one of the creators of the federal law protecting students from sex discrimination in schools.