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2018-04-13 / News

HOW WOMEN ARE CHANGING THE WORLD

By Holly RiddleBut

SHERYL SANDBERGSHERYL SANDBERG
For young and ambitious females entering today’s workforce, the outlook is bright. A new spark of feminism has caught flame, igniting not only the young generation, but all women, inspiring them to fight, to raise their voices and to march, for their passions, their dreams and their rights.

But women aren’t just coming out in full force for themselves; they’re seizing their power and using it to make the whole world better.

From philanthropy to politics, tech to media, and every industry in-between, women are advancing, and fast. Most importantly, they’re creating a world that’s full of hope for future generations.

We compiled this list of 9 prominent women who are leading the way. We know these 9 only scratch the surface. Who’s your favorite female inspiration? Let us know, at editor@pabusinesscentral.com.

MARY BARRAMARY BARRA
SHERYL SANDBERG

You already know the “Lean In” author and Facebook COO, but did you also know she’s the very first woman to become a social media billionaire? An influential executive, she’s never been afraid to speak her mind, particularly in regard to women’s reproductive rights. Her words have not only inspired us, they’ve helped women make day-to-day decisions to advance their careers.

MARY BARRA

Earning the top spot on Fortune’s Most Powerful Women list for multiple years, Barra, the first female CEO of a major car company (GM), is focused on the future of her industry – the driverless car. One of her leadership actions has been recently lauded for its impact on women: simplifying GM’s dress code, an issue which can greatly impact gender equality at work.

MAE JEMISONMAE JEMISON
MAE JEMISON

The first woman of color to go to space and NASA’s very first science mission specialist, Jemison’s path to this milestone was far from smooth, and she recognizes there’s still work to be done to encourage both young girls and African-American children to aspire for careers in science and technology. She advocates for the promotion of science and technology careers to females and minorities, as well as for the transformation of the traditional image of scientists.

URSULA BURNS

The first black woman to run a Fortune 500 company, Burns climbed the ladder at Xerox, starting as an intern and today making vital changes to the company’s future as CEO. She contributes her success to “the help of others, a good education, a strong work ethic and the courage to lean in.” Because of her success, she devotes time to organizations geared at helping minorities and women “gain the education and self-respect they need to take risks…and dream big.”

URSULA BURNSURSULA BURNS
MELINDA GATES

Philanthropist extraordinaire Melinda Gates has given away more than $40 billion of her wealth. Much of her interest lies in improving women’s lives, but not just because she has a passion for the cause. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation also has the data to back it up – the statistics show that when you invest in women, they often invest in turn in their communities in ways that men don’t.

KATHRYN SMITH

Smith is the first woman to become a full-time coach in the NFL and, in her eyes, that means she can’t put her feminist “first” accomplishment in front of her job. In a Sports Illustrated interview, it’s noted, “she’s taking exactly the right approach to a groundbreaking role for her gender, in a way that will serve her well and win her respect within the team and the league. She’s putting in the work first and worrying about everything else later. If she can’t really do the job, it won’t matter that she was the first to hold the job. A failure would define things.”

MELINDA GATESMELINDA GATES
PAT MITCHELL

From the start of her career in media, Mitchell has invested in promoting female leadership and exposure in the media. She was one of the first women to anchor the news and host a morning talk show, as well as the first woman to own, produce and host a national talk show (for which she won an Emmy). She was the first woman president and CEO of the Public Broadcasting System. Most recently, she launched TEDWomen and has worked with the TED organization for years to bring women’s issues and speakers to the broader public.

KATHRYN SMITHKATHRYN SMITH

DANICA ROEM

After being elected to Virginia’s House of Delegates last year, Roem became the only openly transgender person in state legislature in America. Her political tactics were smart and ultimately helped her win the election – instead of focusing on being the “first” anything, she narrowed in on issues every single voter could relate to, like infrastructure. She won her seat over Republican Bob Marshall, who just so happened to sponsor a bill requiring transgender individuals to use bathrooms corresponding with the sex listed on their birth certificate.

CECILE RICHARDS

PAT MITCHELLPAT MITCHELL
Most recently the CEO of Planned Parenthood, Richards has fought a hard fight for 12 years, defending women’s reproductive rights against staunch attackers. While she feels confident leaving Planned Parenthood in good hands, her activism is hardly over. She just released her new book, “Make Trouble: Standing Up, Speaking Out, and Finding the Courage to Lead” and she even admits “never say never” to a potential run for office in her future. However, she says her focus in the next few months will be making sure women are not only running for office, but turning up to vote as well.


DANICA ROEMDANICA ROEM

CECILE RICHARDSCECILE RICHARDS

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