The TIME 100 is an annual listicle that features one hundred people that significantly influenced the world. The tradition started in 1999 and since then, the list is highly anticipated and has distinguished itself among other magazine awards. The list is diverse and important, recognizing the talents and achievements of leaders, thinkers, innovators and artists around the world. The recognized are those who spark dialogue, both agreement and dissent and represent humanity and its accomplishments.
For the 2019 edition, people were classified into 5 categories: pioneers, artists, leaders, icons and titans. This year there were more women on the list than ever. While you may have heard of a few winners from each category, namely Ariana Grande, Michelle Obama, Taylor Swift, Gayle King, etc, here is to recognize the women who are not mainstream, but equally deserving.
Katju and Guruswamy are public interest litigators that led the fight to overturn Section 337 of the Indian Penal Code, which criminalized homosexuality. The code decreed that sexual activities “against the order of nature” as illegal and on September 6, 2018, the Supreme Court of India unanimously ruled it as unconstitutional in the case Navtej Singh Johar v. Union of India. The landmark case, led by Katju and Guruswamy, humanized the fundamental struggles faced by an entire community and ultimately led to incredible success. Ms. Katju and Ms. Guruswamy, your perseverance and commitment to fight for equal rights for the LGBTQ+ community will forever go down in history.
Aparicio is a Mexican actress that defies expectations, a paragon of her field. She is known for her role as Cleo in Roma, which earned her a nomination for Best Actress at the Academy Awards, despite having no acting experience prior to the movie. She also did not speak Mixteco but managed to learn it and deliver her dialogue captivatingly. As a woman of indigenous origin, she represents those less represented, especially in popular media and does so with charisma and grace. Ms. Aparicio, you show minority women that barriers can, and will be broken.
At 16 years old, Thunberg is a Swedish student and climate change activist. She emphasizes the effects of pollution, environmental degradation climate change on the world and has planned several student protests that brought international attention. Three members of the Norwegian parliament nominated her for a Nobel Peace Prize and if she wins, she will the youngest to ever win the distinguished accolade. Ms. Thunberg, you are an incredible representation of the new generation of leaders.
When Saudi Arabia allowed women the drive in June 2018, women’s rights activists like Al-Hathloul were a major part of the reason. She was among the first to challenge the law and would boldly post videos of herself driving. She also opposed Saudi Arabia’s male guardianship system, which prevented women from traveling, conducting official business and even going through certain medical operations by signing a 14,000 strong petition. However, due to her activism, she was put in jail and tortured as a means to silence those who opposed the government. Ms. Al-Hathloul, your selfless dedication to the progress of womankind will forever be in our hearts.
Hyman, a Harvard graduate, is the CEO and co-founder of Rent the Runway, an innovative company that offers accessory and clothing rentals from over 500 designer brands. Hyman became a titan of her industry, with her company achieving the $1 billion business status, a milestone that less than 20 women-owned businesses in the US have ever achieved. Through her business model, high fashion is both sustainable and accessible to the everyday woman. Ms. Hyman, your dominance in both the fashion and business worlds is inspiring, thank you for showing us that women too, can be big bosses.
These are merely 5 of the 45 women, and 100 people of the list and their comprised accomplishments are truly commendable. Keep pursuing your dreams and passions unflinchingly collegiettes, your name just might end up on the list one day.