By Dr. Sabrina Brandon Ricks, SBR Workplace Leadership Services
Women’s History Month became an official nationally recognized month in 1981 to be celebrated in March of each year, according to its website. There are so many powerful female influencers throughout history, many of whom are still here and impacting day-to-day life.
One of the most important women in the lives of many are mothers. There are others who will say grandmothers, sisters, aunts, cousins, best friends, and more. Who is the special, influential woman in your life that has helped to shape and mold you, who loves/loved you, who celebrates you, who supports you, and who means the world to you? This influential woman should be celebrated whether she is still here or is no longer here. Find a way to acknowledge her, thank her, and show her some love.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg
What about those influential women who you have looked up to over the years but may have never met? One of those women who stand out is Ruth Bader Ginsburg, former associate justice of the Supreme Court if the United States, who was affectionately known as RBG by her fans. According to History.com, RBG was the second female Supreme Court Justice and the first Jewish Supreme Court justice. RBG was firm in expressing her values and fought for the rights of others, including gender equality, workers’ rights, and the separation of church from state. She opened the door for many to follow in her footsteps and placed doors where there had not been any for women.
Fight for the things you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you. – Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Another influential woman that has had a great presence throughout history is Oprah Winfrey. According to India Today, Oprah is the richest African American woman of the century and the first Black multi-billionaire. Oprah has been so positive, optimistic, and encouraging of other women. She had been pushing women to be their very best from the start and she supports women like no other. According to Biography, Oprah has served as a talk show host that provided a platform for women to have a voice for the highest-rated daytime talk show ever. She has been a television producer and given women the opportunity to produce alongside her. She has been an actress and author who always brings women to the forefront in all that she does to show support, create opportunities, and give back to society. Finally, she is a philanthropist with a big heart for giving and watching others succeed. What a powerful example for women!
Turn your wounds into wisdom. You can have it all. Just not all at once. – Oprah Winfrey
Another amazing woman who still trailblazes in all she does as she sets an example for other women is Michelle Obama, former first lady of the United States and the first African American to serve in this capacity. Michelle stole the hearts of many on the campaign trail with her kindness, love, and generosity. No matter who you support in politics, it is hard to deny her poise, grace, and competence. She has been an example to her daughters, Sasha and Malia, and an example to “daughters” around the country and world. Many women have followed her lead in focusing on health, “Becoming” the best that you can be, being an amazing wife, mother, daughter, and sister, and just being the calm throughout many storms this country has faced.
When I hear about negative and false attacks, I really do not invest any energy into them, because I know who I am. – Michelle Obama
As we reflect on the greatness of these influential women, do not stop here in continuing to learn from this group and from others. Who has made the influence on your life and why? Again, acknowledge them and thank them for their impact.
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