Women That Made Me Proud to Be a Woman Article

I feel like there’s such a negative connotation to the word "feminism." I want to preface that that is by no means the intent throughout this article. A lot of this is actually me just fangirling over empowering women that have made a genuine impact on both me and in leadership roles as a whole. The actual definition of feminism is, "The advocacy of women's rights on the basis of the equality of the sexes," so please know that that is all this article is about, again, as well as a lot of fangirling.

  1. 1. Ruth Bader Ginsberg

    Ruth Bader Ginsburg 2016 portrait

    Honestly, no matter what I say about the “Notorious RBG,” it won’t seem like enough, so I’ll just simply say thank you. Watching a woman fight for my right to own my own body, the ability to buy property without the approval of a man, own a credit card in my own name and so much more was such a powerful thing to witness growing up. There is a particular quote where she simply states that, “Women belong in all places where decisions are being made.” I won’t add too much to this because I want her words to sink in. All I would like to add, however, is that giving choice is not taking anything away, but rather adding more to give.

  2. 2. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

    While I was writing my notes for Mrs. Ocasio-Cortez, I realized I had far too many items to fit in one paragraph, but one thing I really wanted to highlight that she taught me was that gender is such a futile way to determine who has the right to speak and who has the right to make decisions for anyone other than themselves. There’s this quote I absolutely love in her speech at the Women’s Unity Rally. “Justice is about making sure that being polite is not the same thing as being quiet.” If I could tell you anything from this article, if you get nothing else out of this, please know that you deserve to be heard and you have just as much of a right to speak as the man behind you. I also love that this phenomenal congresswoman knows who deserves her breath, and I think that’s a really valuable lesson to learn, especially when it so often gets mistaken for fear and lack of education. You know what you know, and the only person that can determine why you speak is you.

  3. 3. Audrey Hepburn

    I absolutely love Audrey Hepburn! I cannot think of a more influential woman of her time than Audrey Hepburn. She was one of the strongest willed women ever, left a film career to be an ambassador for UNICEF, received the medal of honor for her work as that ambassador and literally changed the way beauty standards were perceived by the public. So with that, I’ll leave this one with the great word of Ms. Hepburn herself: “Make the world kind.”

  4. 4. Princess Diana

    princess diana

    I mean, if you want to talk about brave women ahead of their time, we can talk about Princess Diana for as many hours as you wish. Bringing it in with yet another feminist quote, Princess Diana once said, “People think that at the end of the day that a man is the only answer to fulfillment, actually, a job is better for me.” I want her words to stay with you more than mine because I don’t think I could phrase it any better, so please follow your heart and your gut. You know what your heart wants more than anyone else ever will; please follow it.

  5. 5. Emma Watson

    I cannot think of anyone that has better defined what feminism is! There’s a speech she gives at the UN where she perfectly describes what she believes it means, and it gives me chills every single time. There’s a point where she mentions that feminism is not a tool to beat or resent men, but rather an opportunity to reach a common ground between all genders. She further explains the way feminism has so venomously been transpired over time because people are afraid to call themselves feminists. She put into words for many women, especially young women like myself at the time, what feminism is at its core without being hateful or one-sided.

  6. 6. Hillary Clinton

    Okay, I know this one is going to cause a divide, however, I wanted to re-emphasize my idea of this article! I know many have conflicting opinions on politics, but voicing your opinion is half the battle of being a female today. It felt important for me to mention her because she was the first female presidential candidate for a major party. The amount of power and will this woman took on by shouldering the weight of decades of doing what millions of women hope to be was such an important thing to see, no matter the age. I was just under the age mark to vote, so I’ve yet to have the opportunity to actually vote for a female candidate, but I can’t wait to someday, hopefully in the near future. Although it breaks my heart that in 231 years, we’ve still yet to see someone who makes up half the U.S. population. I know it’s coming, and I can’t wait to see the next fearless woman take that challenge and turn it into something empowering for the rest of us.

  7. 7. Serena Williams

    I have never witnessed a female handle blatant sexism with such integrity and bravery as well as Serena Williams. In a career dominated by men, it’s a breath of fresh air to watch a woman voice an honest opinion about the workings of her industry. In 2015, she won "Sportsperson Of The Year." She addressed the importance of that title throughout her entire speech, and you better believe I cheered for her every time she said it. She thanked Sports Illustrated for not just awarding her "Female Sportsperson" of the year, but just simply "Sportsperson" of the year, and from one woman to the next, she earned that title, and I hope she knows how much that means to so many young female athletes.

  8. 8. Lizzo

    Lizzo Hair Flip

    I could write thousands of theses on Lizzo, and it still wouldn’t feel like enough. I cannot think of anyone who embodies body positivity more than this astonishing woman. More than just body positivity, she also addresses the importance of self-love, both physically and mentally. I cannot stress how empowering that is to hear, especially from someone else and someone who preaches it in such a healthy way. I truly can’t not smile when I listen to any song of hers, so I challenge you to go listen to all her songs right now! I promise you won’t be disappointed.

  9. 9. Greta Thunberg

    I think I get really intimidated at times when I think of how much needs to get done and all the things I feel have set me back for my future. That’s why I think Greta Thunberg has been such a massive inspiration. At just seventeen years old, she’s done more for the planet than thousands of individuals could hope to do in their lifetime. At times, I still have to remind myself that she’s spending her youth choosing to educate others on global issues and urging entire countries to join her in the fight against the climate crisis.

  10. 10. Moms:)

    the "future is female" sign

    I know this is a selfish choice, but I wanted to include it for all the moms and women that give their children, and more specifically daughters, the license to believe they can be and do anything they wish with their future. Growing up, my mom heavily encouraged me to do and be anything I wanted to be. I remember I changed my major two days before my classes started, and before I did it, I called my mom. I was shaking the entire time, and after I told her, she seemed so genuinely excited for me. She literally cheered, and I doubt she remembers it, but it gave me so much comfort! Fun fact: She still gives me article and film ideas, and I think that’s the most encouraging and gratifying thing a parent can do for a child. So, to all parents that believe their children are more than a factor of gender, you’re gratifying them and giving them so much more than just a childhood — you’re allowing them to imagine a future where they can be absolutely anything they want to be, and that is so deeply powerful.

I wrote this article because these are all women I believe have spoken for people who can’t quite articulate or voice their opinions to the same degree or audience. As massively cheesy as it sounds, speaking up for yourself and articulating what you believe you deserve is a really difficult thing to express, especially when the odds are against you. So, before I go into yet another rant, thank you to all the women that fight for the rights of others. To the women learning, loving, educating, growing, fighting, caring and absolutely never giving up for one another, you’re the reason my future doesn’t (completely) horrify me. Thank you, truly.