Two days ago, on International Women’s Day, we celebrated the achievements of women and how far we have come in this testosterone dominated society. Not only can we birth a human child, but we have shown that we have a right to become leaders of countries, and have equal pay (I mean c’mon it’s 2016).
We are doctors, lawyers, students, musicians, and teachers. We are anything we want to be — and below I present to you 8 women who have proven just that.
From taking a stand for those who cannot speak for themselves, or for showing the strength and power of women, these 8 women are extremely important to female empowerment, growth, and equality. These are women that we want our daughters to look up to, and realize that they can achieve their goals in life, and become a Supreme Court Justice, a UN Ambassador, or to just unapologetically be who they are.
Actress, Model, Activist.
We all know Watson for portraying one the most defining film/novel characters of our time, Hermione Granger (who is definitely one of my fictional role models — smart, confident, & helps defeat the most powerful dark wizard that our world has ever faced.) She’s basically a registered badass, like, girl, teach me. But what many people don’t know are her achievements as a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador.
Watson helped launch the HeForShe campaign, which encourages men to advocate for gender equality. Watson denounces the idea that feminism is all about women domination, but simply for men and women to be equals.
In 2015, Watson also gave a speech about gender equality at the World Economic Forum, which, if you don’t know what that is (as I hadn’t either before doing this research), it’s a pretty big deal, considering it brings together nearly 2,500 of the world’s top leaders in business, international politics, intellectuals, and journalists to discuss the big issues facing our world today. So yeah [and I get nervous giving a presentation in my German class…].
Honestly, casting couldn’t have picked a better individual for the role of Hermione. A real hero in fiction and in real life.
Sandra Day O’Conner, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan
In 1981, Reagan shocked the U.S. by putting a woman on the U.S. Supreme Court: Sandra Day O’Conner. Since O’Conner’s time, three more women have joined her legacy, and they are all there today: Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan.
These four women have shown not just the world, but more specifically the United States and it’s societal mold, what women are capable of.
Ginsburg is a huge advocate for women’s rights, openly stating that “[t]he basic thing is that the government has no business making that choice for a woman” in regards to women’s health, and then officiated the wedding for Kennedy Center President Michael Kaiser and his husband John Roberts. Her officiation was the first instance of a U.S. Supreme Court Justice performing a same-sex marriage. You go girl!
Sotomayor is the first justice appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court with Hispanic heritage. This is a huge deal, considering Hispanic women in the U.S. tend to receive the least benefits and equality compared to other women in the US, who are already oppressed. Sotomayor is known for her attention to detail, and getting the facts straight. She doesn’t put up with unprepared lawyers, and demands the full respect and dignity from all who enter her courtroom. She definitely redefines the ideology that society has held for years about women in her position. Oh, and she was also the first Hispanic woman to administer an oath to a President/Vice President when she administered Vice President Joe Biden’s oath for his second term. You keep doing you, your honor.
Kagan was the Dean of Harvard Law School. I mean, if that doesn’t make you go, “Oh Snap”, then it should. Harvard is ranked second among the best law schools, right behind Yale. You basically have to be a super human to attend, which Kagan did attend [her other former alma mater include Princeton & Worcester College, Oxford…I would take a good guess and say that Kagan is one of the brightest minds out there]. Kagan is also the first woman to hold the position of Solicitor General, nominated by President Barack Obama. I would say that’s pretty legit.
Now, I’m sure many of you are saying right now, who is Kayla Itsines? Well, she is actually a personal inspiration of mine — and soon she will be one of yours as well.
Kayla has built her own workout empire from the ground up. Only in her early 20s, and she has truly become not only an internet sensation, but an inspiration amongst millions of women across the globe.
As a personal trainer, and a woman, Kayla knows what women want to see change in their bodies — and in the most healthy way possible. Kayla’s routines work.
And the best part? Her “Bikini Body” routines are only 28 minutes a day. While they are high intensity, her routines are designed around the everyday woman — not the woman who has hours of time to spend at the gym.
Kayla also has a nutrition guide, a 90-page clean eating plan.
Check out her website to see what else she’s all about, and follow her on Instagram too!
Many of us know her as Sophia Burset on the hit Netflix drama, Orange is the New Black; but Cox is much, much more than her acting career (which is fabulous, by the way). Just go to her Wikipedia page and you will see the list of awards upon awards that she has won, from the Anti-Violence Project 2013 Courage Award honoree, to being one of TIME’s 2015 – 100 most influential people (Cox also became the first openly transgender person to be on the cover of TIME in 2014, like okay girl, WERK).
In 2014, Cox was given the GLAAD Stephen F. Kolzak Award for her work within the entertainment industry to end homophobia and to bring transgender awareness. Cox is also the first openly transgender person to be nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award. So you could say she’s pretty badass.
I have no doubt that we will be seeing more of Cox’s incredible talents and advocacy in the future, and for that she is definitely a woman to be on everyone’s radar.
Oh Hillary, you young soul, you. No matter what your opinion of her is in the presidential election, one thing is for certain — Hillary Rodham Clinton is a strong force in women empowerment.
Earning her Juris Doctor from Yale Law School, she was the first female partner at Rose Law Firm (the third oldest law firm in the U.S.).
As First Lady when her husband, Bill Clinton, was in office, she advocated for many children’s rights programs such as the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, the Adoption and Safe Families Act, and the Foster Care Independence Act.
Clinton went on to become the first First Lady to run for elected public office, in which she became the first female New York senator. She was later re-elected into this position. Clinton continued on to run in the 2008 Presidential election, and although she lost to now President Barack Obama, I daresay that her independence and leadership during this time is truly admirable.
Clinton continued on to become Secretary of State under the Obama Administration. She left the office at the end of Obama’s first term; only a few years later returning to run again, and now closer than ever, to become the United State’s first woman president.
Once again, no matter what your opinions are of Hillary as a potential president (as one should vote based on who he/she truly believes would be a good president, a decision that should not be focused on gender or race, but on who has the best policies and leadership abilities to run a country), she is also, as all the other women above are, an inspiration for all of us.
Keep staying hip, Hillary.
I hope this post inspired you.
I hope that each day you wake up with the independence and bravery to reach your goals, and to not limit yourself.
If Hillary Clinton can rise up to this stature in such a man’s world, then you can be the valedictorian of your class, or have the most innovative business concept, or even play ball with the guys, or all three!!!
No, we don’t have to prove ourselves, but we will show you what’s girls are made of: steel, and a true stubbornness to succeed.
If you find any mistakes at all with the article, please message me directly, thank you!