Forward Friday: Shonda Rhimes

She is the reason for all our heartbreak and our excitement for Thursday nights. Shonda Rhimes is our next feature for Her Campus La Verne's "Forward Friday" series!

Shonda is an African-American producer, screenwriter, and author who has created some of our favorite ABC shows such as Grey's Anatomy, Scandal, How To Get Away With Murder, the new Station 19 and several more, all produced through her production company Shondaland. Though she may be hated for breaking our hearts through the drama of these shows, she's also so damn inspirational for many young females in the world.

Shonda gives us young women a hope that we can and will achieve anything we want. She especially exemplifies this within her shows. With the help of her diverse, strong female leads, such as Ellen Pompeo (Meredith Grey in Grey's Anatomy), Kerry Washington (Olivia Pope in Scandal), Viola Davis (Annalise Keating in How To Get Away With Murder), and Jaina Lee Ortiz (Andy Herrera in Station 19), Shonda tells these badass stories about women who fought and succeeded in male pre-dominant careers, which is a definite refresher from the typical damsel in distress storyline that is overly played out by now. She chose these beautiful, strong women to help portray that the possibilities are endless, especially if you never give up or listen to anything negative people tell you. You should never feel underrepresented or unsuccessful because of your race, gender or sexual orientation. Shonda has done such an amazing job with the characters these shows have carried on for many, many seasons and are still finding new ways to stray from each and every single stereotype,  providing awareness about different societal issues. It's no wonder why Shonda's career has thrived as much as it has--she is a force to be reckoned with who refuses to stop without making a change or impacting every single young person out there and insuring that their being different doesn't ever make them "less than" because they are perfect just as they are. 


Shonda constantly fights for civil rights and justice for racial equality, feminism, interracial couples, the LGBTQ community, and for the awareness of issues such as domestic violence, sexual harassment, religious equality, immigration, amputees, veteran disabilities and so much more. It seems crazily unrealistic that she can feature every single one of these issues and more within her shows, but somehow she found a way to do it and she continues to do it today. As if Shonda wasn't inspirational and amazing enough, she also does occasional posts on Instagram with the hashtag "#InspirationWednesday" that highlight the truths and histories of iconic women who have gone untold throughout their lives. To me, it seems like such a deserving, underrated history lesson that we are unable to receive in classrooms because these women's stories are sadly always overshadowed, but Shonda has dedicated her own time to ensure that people are educated about these important figures through something as simple as an Instagram post.

(Instagram @shondarhimes)

Support Shonda Rhimes at all costs! Binge watch one (or all) of her awesome,  women-empowering shows; you really can't go wrong by choosing any of them because they're all very amazing, addictive, informative, and inspirational- you'll be hooked in no time! We could all use a little Shonda in our lives, even if she kills or writes off some of our favorite fictional characters. Also, you can support Shonda and get to know more about her by reading one of her novels (which I haven't gotten around to reading yet, but they're definitely going on my book bucket list)!

Shonda Rhimes, I truly thank you for everything you do and all the diversity you bring to the screen. We could use more people like you in this scary society.


(images from