Home Page Images Archive

Home Page Images — Alphabetical Archive

Portrait

9 to 5 (1980)

9 to 5 highlights some of the problems woman tend to face in professional environments by showing the lives of  three working women living out their fantasies of getting even with, and their successful overthrow of, the company's autocratic, "sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot" boss.

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Jill Abramson

Jill Abramson is the first female Executive Editor of the New York Times in the organization’s 162-year history. Despite the decline of print media, the NYT still has as average circulation of over 1.6 million for weekday editions and is increasing from previous years. In the past, she worked for the Wall Street Journal as an investigative reporter and a deputy bureau chief. After the appointment of Katie Couric as an anchor of CBS evening News, Abramson commented: “This is yet another transitional moment for professional women. There will now be a female solo anchor. But there are still few women successfully leading the cornerstone institutions of our society.” She has authored several books and has two children.

 

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Saher Alam

Saher Alam was born in Lucknow, India and moved to the United States when she was five. She is a graduate of Princeton University and the Creative Writing Program at Boston University. Alam also held a Creative Writing Fellowship in Fiction at Emory University from 1998 to 2000, and her short stories have been featured in the anthology Best of the Fiction Workshops 1999, as well as the journals Literary Imagination and Five Chapters. Her debut novel, The Groom To Have Been, won the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize for Fiction in 2008.

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Alykhan Alani

Alykhan Alani is a Take Five student this year. He majored in International Health and Society and has minors in Islamic Studies and Women's Studies. Alykhan is the founder of Rochester Students for Social Justice, a pan-collegiate coalition of progressive student activists in the Rochester area. He volunteers locally with many groups, including Rochester Food Not Bombs and Metrojustice Rochester. In his free time he works for the University of Rochester Admissions Office as a Meridian and DJ's under the name DJ ALYKHAN. He is an active scholar, recently presenting his work at the 2012 Seneca Falls Dialogues and the 2013 Rochester Institute of Technology's Conable Conference. He was the 2010 recipient of Michael Lowenstein Memorial Award.

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Alternatives for Battered Women

Alternatives for Battered Women exists to enhance the quality of life and empower individuals affected by or at risk of domestic violence. ABW is the only licensed provider in Monroe County of shelter and services for women and children who are affected by domestic violence. Among the many offerings at ABW are

  • A 24-hour hotline, providing access to the shelter, information, referrals and counseling.
  • A 38-bed emergency shelter for victims and children (both boys and girls, up to age 18). Residents receive safe housing, counseling and education, information, access to multiple support groups, assistance and planning for the family’s future housing needs, and legal information.
  • Walk-in counseling. Short-term counseling is available in an emergency.
  • Family programs are available for children and their parent residing in the shelter, including counseling (both group and individual), information, referrals, social and recreational activities.
  • Transitional Support Services includes our non-residential programs, and include small group counseling sessions, topic-focused groups, open community support groups, and individual counseling.
  • Court Advocacy is a collaborative program between ABW and Legal Aid Society of Rochester which provides assistance at the Hall of Justice to victims of domestic violence as they navigate the legal system to pursue an Order of Protection.
  • Our Education and Prevention program reaches out to students in middle and high schools and college, to help them learn how to form healthy relationships, and identifying abusive behaviors. This program also provides short-term education in area high schools for students deemed to be high-risk.
  • A Speaker’s Bureau that offers individualized presentations to community groups, professionals and others, about domestic violence and agency services.

Alternatives for Battered Women is a founding member of the New York State Coalition Against Domestic Violence; the Rochester/Monroe County Domestic Violence Consortium; a member of the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence; and a member of the LGBTQ Domestic Violence Service Providers Network.

 

Portrait

Susan B. Anthony

Susan B. Anthony was a prominent American civil rights leader—an activist on behalf of the Temperance movement, the Abolitionist movement, and (most notably) the Women’s Suffrage movement. She co-founded the women’s rights journal The Revolution, and was an excellent public speaker on behalf of all her causes. On November 18, 1872, Anthony was arrested for voting in the presidential election two weeks earlier. The penalty was a $100 fine, which Anthony never paid. In 1869, Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton founded the National Women’s Suffrage Association, and was a collaborator in the publishing of The History of Women’s Suffrage. She is also responsible for women being admitted to the University of Rochester.

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Susan B. Anthony

Susan B. Anthony was a prominent American civil rights leader—an activist on behalf of the Temperance movement, the Abolitionist movement, and (most notably) the Women’s Suffrage movement. She co-founded the women’s rights journal The Revolution, and was an excellent public speaker on behalf of all her causes. On November 18, 1872, Anthony was arrested for voting in the presidential election two weeks earlier. The penalty was a $100 fine, which Anthony never paid. In 1869, Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton founded the National Women’s Suffrage Association, and was a collaborator in the publishing of The History of Women’s Suffrage. She is also responsible for women being admitted to the University of Rochester.

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Gloria Anzaldua

Anzaldua self-describes as a “Chicana/Tejana/lesbian/dyke/feminist/writer/poet/cultural theorist”.  After receiving her Master’s from the University of Texas-Austin in 1972, she taught a course called “La Mujer Chicana.” Teaching this class engaged her with feminism and queer theory, which fueled her later work. In 1977, disappointed with the lack of representation of women of color, she began to focus on her own writing, which included her involvement with the Feminist Writers Guild. In the 1980s and early 90s Anzaldua published two books, This Bridge Called My Back: Writings by Radical Women of Color and Making Face Making Soul/Haciendo Caras: Creative and Critical Perspectives by Feminists of ColorAnzaldua received the National Endowment of the Arts Fiction Award and the Lambda Lesbian Small Press Book Award.

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Vernice Armour

            Vernice Armour, born in 1973, made history as the Marine Corps’ first African American female pilot. Armour was influenced by her father, a retired major in the US Army Reserves, and her step father, a retired marine, as she grew up in Memphis Tennessee.  Upon entering her freshman year at Middle Tennessee State University, Armour enrolled in the Army ROTC program. She was inspired to become a pilot when she saw a young, African American, female pilot at an ROTC career day. Vernice took several years off from school in order to graduate from the Nashville Police Academy as a Police Officer in 1996. Soon after, in 1997, she graduated from MTSU with a B.S. in Special Education.  On December 12th, 1998, Vernice was commissioned as Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps. She finally finished flight school in 2001 at the top of her 12-person class, and out of the last 200 graduates. She made the Naval Air Station’s prestigious Commodore’s List and received the Academic Achievement Award in the Marine Corps. She was stationed at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton near San Diego. Armour was recognized as the first African American female combat pilot during Operation Iraqi Freedom. She has completed two additional combat tours in the Gulf.  She’s created a global movement based on the Breakthrough Mindset, traveling internationally and inspiring young people to take responsibility, accountability, and “step up and lead."

 

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Tammy Baldwin

It was a good year for the LGBTQ community and its supporters during the US elections. Tammy Baldwin became the first openly gay United States Senator. There was also the re-election of pro-LGBTQ leaders President Barack Obama and his Vice President Joe Biden (who called transgender discrimination the “civil rights issue of our era”), but more importantly, there were big wins in terms of marriage equality. Maine, Minnesota, and Washington all voted to support marriage equality, and Maryland struck down an amendment that would have defined marriage as one-man-one-woman. Additionally, Stacie Laughton became New Hampshire’s first transgender lawmaker.

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Michelle Banks

Michelle Banks is an award winning actress, writer, producer, director, and teacher. Michelle was born in 1968 in Washington D.C. and developed an interest in acting at a young age and performed in local theatrical productions through her childhood. She attended SUNY Purchase and obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Drama Studies. Following graduation, she founded Onyx Theater Company in NYC, the only deaf theater for African Americans. Her work with Onyx earned her the Cultural Enrichment Award from Gallaudet University and the Distinguished Service Award from the New York Deaf Theater. Her diverse talents include choreography, public speaking, teaching, and directing. She created and stared in a one woman traveling show called "Reflections of a Deaf Black Woman" She has appeared in several films including Malcolm X and Compensation and has guest starred on numerous television shows like Soul Food, and Strong Medicine. She is an active member of the National Black Deaf Advocates. Banks currently resides in Los Angeles, California and travels to various schools and community centers to lead acting workshops for deaf children and adults.

 

 

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Clara Barton

Clara Barton founded the American Red Cross in 1881, motivated by her experiences tending to wounded soldiers in the American Civil War and helping prepare hospitals for the Franco-Prussian War. Barton began lobbying for support of the American Red Cross in 1873, arguing that it would be of assistance in times of peace as well as in war-time. In 1896, Barton was able to open the first American International Red Cross in Turkey after the Hamidian Massacres. The American Red Cross continues to be active and aids in domestic disaster relief, blood donation and collections, military services, community health education efforts, international relief programs, and other services for those in need.

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Pushpa Basnet

Pushpa Basnet, one of CNN's 2012 Heroes Winners, founded the Early Childhood Development Center (ECDC) in Kathmandu Napal in 2005. The center works with jail administrators to keep the children of incarcerated individuals out of jail cells. In Nepal, incarcerated parents (particularly mothers) must bring their children to jail with them if there are no individuals available to act as a gaurdian. Children growing up in jail cells lack access to education, nutrition, and medical care. Basnet's center gives children of incarcerated individuals a safe home, regular medical check-ups, and enrollment in a local school. Children have regular visitations with their parents, including on holidays.

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Jeremy Bentham

Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832) was an author, jurist, philosopher, and legal and social reformer. Though he is best known for his advocacy of utilitarianism and animal rights, Bentham was also very outspoken against the oppression of women. His decision early in life to become a reformist is attributed to his disagreement with the legally inferior position of women in society; thus, he argued for complete equality between the sexes. In Offences Against One’s Self, Bentham also argued for the liberalization of laws prohibiting homosexual sex, though this essay was not published until 1931, nearly 100 years after his death.

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Marie Lyn Bernard

Editor-in-Chief Marie Lyn Bernard (aka Riese) founded Autostraddle in March 2009 with Design Director Alexandra Vega. Autostraddle is the most popular independently-owned lesbian website worldwide and self-described as “a progressively feminist online community for a new generation of kickass lesbian, bisexual & otherwise inclined ladies (and their friends).” The website won the 2012 Bloggies’ Weblog of the Year Award and has been nominated for “Outstanding Blog” by the GLAAD Awards. Riese’s writings have been shown in many magazines including Marie Claire, Curve, and Interlude. She has also presented at BlogHer 2011, Yale, New York University, The University of Chicago, and The Museum of Sex.

Portrait

Boys on the Side (1995)

Boys on the Side was chosen as a favorite of ours. It centers around the lives and worlds of three women who meet mostly by chance and form meaningful relationships as they embark on a road trip together.

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Bevin Branlandningham

Bevin Branlandningham's blog Queer Fat Femme follows her on her mission to “make the world a safe place for people to love themselves, regardless of their differences.” Branlandingham is interested in queer activism, body liberation, and self-love. She is a burlesque dancer, emcee, workshop leader, conference steering committee member, and also the host and producer of the podcast “FemmeCast.” In 2008 she was recognized by the Mayor of Jersey City for her work within the LGBT community and was a top entrepreneur in GO magazine in 2011. Her writing has been featured in many publications including the recent book Persistence: All Ways Butch and Femme.

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Margaret A. Brewer

Margaret A. Brewer was the first female in the US Marine Corps to reach the rank of general officer. Brewer was born in 1930 and was raised in Durand Michigan, Brewer attended the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor where she obtained a bachelor’s degree in geography in 1952 and was also a member of Zeta Tau Alpha sorority. Not even a year after her graduation, in March of 1952, Brewer was commissioned a Marine second lieutenant. She held various military positions throughout her military career, including serving as the Commanding Officer of the Women Marine companies, Platoon Commander for women officer candidates, Executive Officer of the Woman Officer School, Public Affairs Officer, and Lieutenant Colonel for the 6th Marine Corps District. Before she was selected as the Director of Women Marines in 1973, she was the Special Assistant to the Director, and then the Chief of the Support Department at the Marine Corps Education Center.  She was presented the Legion of Merit by the Commandant of the Marine Corps in 1977. In 1978, while serving as the Deputy Director of the Division of Information for the Marine Corps Headquarters, she was nominated for appointment to the grade of brigadier general. She assumed duty as Director of Information on May 11th, 1978, at which time she became the first female general officer in the U.S. Marine Corps. She retired in 1980 and became active in the Catholic Charities of Arlington County and the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation. She worked toward the creation of the National Museum of the Marine Corps and the Women in Military Service for American Memorial. She passed away from Alzheimer’s disease in 2013.                         

 

Portrait

Hazel Johnson Brown

Hazel Johnson Brown is a retired nurse and educator who served with the U.S. Army from 1955-1983. She was born in 1927 in West Chester, Pennsylvania. She and her six siblings grew up on her father’s farm in Chester County. At twelve years old, Hazel was inspired to become a nurse when she had an encounter with a local white public health nurse. She was rejected from the West Chester School of Nursing because she was black. After her application was dismissed, she moved to New York City and enrolled in the Harlem Hospital School of Nursing in 1947. While in college, she was a member of the Delta Sigma Theta sorority. She joined the army in 1955 after President Harry Truman banned segregation and discrimination in the armed forces. She served as a staff nurse in Japan and the Chief nurse in Korea. While in the army, Johnson-Brown earned a master’s degree in nursing education from Columbia University and a doctorate in education administration from Catholic University of America. She was Assistant Dean of the University of Maryland School of Nursing from 1976-1978. In 1979, she became the first black female general in the United States Army and the first black chief of the Army Nurse Corps.  During her time in the military, she served as the Director of the Walter Reed Army Institute of Nursing, project director at the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command in Washington D.C., and special assistant to the chief of the U.S. Army Medical Command in Korea. Additionally, taught nursing at Georgetown University and George Mason University.  Johnson-Brown sadly passed away from Alzheimer’s disease in August 2011.

 

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Lucy Burns

Lucy Burns was an American suffragist and women’s rights activist. She traveled to England during her time in graduate school, where she met Emmaline Pankhurst, and was so inspired by her activism that she dropped out of her graduate studies to stay with her and join the cause. Upon return to the U.S., she joined the National American Women Suffrage Association (NAWSA), but when her methods caused tension between her and NAWSA, she and her colleagues formed the National Women’s Party. Burns made a radical proposal once again at the 1913 NAWSA convention in Washington, D.C. Because Democrats controlled the White House and both houses of Congress at the time, Burns wanted to give them an ultimatum—support our bill for suffrage or we will make sure you don’t get reelected. Wilson eventually reneged on his vow to support Women’s Suffrage, but the pressure was on. Burns was arrested while picketing the White House, and sent to Occoquan Workhouse in Virginia. Being in prison didn’t stop her activism—she regularly organized protests with other prisoners. After she was released, she was quickly rearrested for protesting the White House again, and upon her third arrest in 1917, the judge aimed to make an example of Burns, and she was given the maximum sentence. Once again a prisoner at Occoquan Workhouse, Lucy Burns endured what is remembered as the “Night of Terror.” The women were treated brutally and were refused medical attention. Of the well-known suffragists of the time, Burns spent the most time in jail. After the women of the United States gained the right to vote, Burns retired from political life and devoted herself to the Catholic Church and her orphaned niece.

 

Portrait

Lucy Burns

Lucy Burns was an American suffragist and women’s rights activist. She traveled to England during her time in graduate school, where she met Emmaline Pankhurst, and was so inspired by her activism that she dropped out of her graduate studies to stay with her and join the cause. Upon return to the U.S., she joined the National American Women Suffrage Association (NAWSA), but when her methods caused tension between her and NAWSA, she and her colleagues formed the National Women’s Party. Burns made a radical proposal once again at the 1913 NAWSA convention in Washington, D.C. Because Democrats controlled the White House and both houses of Congress at the time, Burns wanted to give them an ultimatum—support our bill for suffrage or we will make sure you don’t get reelected. Wilson eventually reneged on his vow to support Women’s Suffrage, but the pressure was on. Burns was arrested while picketing the White House, and sent to Occoquan Workhouse in Virginia. Being in prison didn’t stop her activism—she regularly organized protests with other prisoners. After she was released, she was quickly rearrested for protesting the White House again, and upon her third arrest in 1917, the judge aimed to make an example of Burns, and she was given the maximum sentence. Once again a prisoner at Occoquan Workhouse, Lucy Burns endured what is remembered as the “Night of Terror.” The women were treated brutally and were refused medical attention. Of the well-known suffragists of the time, Burns spent the most time in jail. After the women of the United States gained the right to vote, Burns retired from political life and devoted herself to the Catholic Church and her orphaned niece.

 

Portrait

Annie Jump Cannon

Annie Jump Cannon was an influential American astronomer, most notably recognized for her contribution to modern day stellar classification. Born in 1863 to state senator Wilson Lee Cannon and Mary Elizabeth Jump, Annie had a childhood interest in star gazing which was passed down from her mother. A high achiever in secondary school mathematics, Cannon attended Wellesley College. She suffered from Scarlet Fever during her years in college, and was left almost completely deaf after her recovery from the illness. She graduated with a degree in physics in 1984, but was uninterested in any jobs available to women at the time. She received a position as an assistant to her college astronomy professor and was able to take graduate classes simultaneously. Cannon developed interests in photography and spectroscopy during this time. She then became an assistant to Harvard College Observatory director Edward Pickering and helped create the Henry Draper Catalogue mapping 230,000 stars in the sky. While employed at Harvard, she earned 25 cents per hour, less than what the secretaries earned at the time. During her 40 year career, women began to gain credibility within the scientific community. Cannon was the first female to win the Henry Draper Medal from the National Academy of Sciences. She passed away in 1941 at the age of 78.

 

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Catherine Cerulli

Catherine Cerulli is the Director of the Susan B. Anthony Center for Leadership, as well as the Laboratory of Interpersonal Violence and Victimization, which uses evidence-based research to provide resources to community partners to end domestic violence. Cerulli received an AAUW Community Action Grant to study the local government’s response to cases of domestic violence in Buffalo, NY. She also established the Clinic for Women, Children, and Social Justice at University of Buffalo, which trains lawyers to effectively try cases related to domestic violence. As director of the Anthony Center for Leadership, Cerulli is responsible for creating and implementing programs to celebrate women’s achievements and work to overcome the remaining barriers to women’s wider leadership.  

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Margaret Chan

Margaret Chan is the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) and is the most powerful person in global public health. She was born in China and attended medical school in Canada and was eventually appointed Director of Health of Hong Kong. In her nine-year tenure as director, there she launched new services to prevent the spread of disease and promote better health. She also introduced new initiatives to improve communicable disease surveillance and response, enhance training for public health professionals, and establish better local and international collaboration. Chan joined WHO in 2003 and became Director-General within three years. She is now in her second term and will serve until June 2017. She considers “improvements in the health of the people of Africa and the health of women” to be the essential to improving global health.

 

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Shirley Anita St. Hill Chisholm

After graduating Columbia University in 1952 with a Masters in Elementary Education, Shirley Anita St. Hill Chisholm was a director of a child care center. Her political career began In 1964, winning a seat in the New York State Legislature. In 1968 she was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, making her the first black woman elected to such a position. Chisholm participated in the founding of the Congressional Black Caucus in 1971 and in 1972 she was the first black candidate for the President of the United States from a major party. Chisholm was backed by the National Organization of Women and Betty Friedan and Gloria Steinem were among her supporters. During her unsuccessful campaign she survived three assassination attempts. Chisholm continued to serve in Congress until 1982. During her time there she was focused on increasing funding for education and healthcare, and reducing the military spending budget. Upon retiring, Chisholm returned to her roots in education, teaching Women’s Studies and Politics at Mount Holyoke College. In 1993 Chisholm was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame and President Bill Clinton nominated her as the ambassador to Jamaica, which she had to decline based on her health. She passed away January 1, 2005 at the age of 80.

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Margaret Cho

Margaret Cho is a comedian, fashion designer, actress, author, and singer-songwriter. Cho is best known for her stand-up routines, through which she critiques social and political problems, especially those pertaining to race and sexuality. She has also directed and appeared in music videos and has her own clothing line. She has frequently supported LGBT rights and has won awards for her humanitarian efforts on behalf of women, Asians and Asian-Americans, and the LGBT community.

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Olivia Coffaro

Olivia Coffaro is a major in Women's Studies. She is an active member of Phi Sigma Sigma, a dynamic sisterhood of powerful women fostering uncompromising principles, igniting positive change, and embracing individuality. She also is active in Women's Caucus. This semester, Olivia is interning at Planned Parenthood of the Rochester/Syracuse Region in Community Affairs and Public Policy.

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Jennifer Cook

Jennifer Cook is the Community Affairs Coordinator at Planned Parenthood of Rochester/Syracuse Region. She attended the University of Arizona for Health Education and received her Masters in Social Behavior & Health and Public Policy and Administration from the University of Albany School of Public Health. Before working at Planned Parenthood, she worked at the American Civil Liberties Union and at Pantano Behavioral Health Services.

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Laverne Cox

Laverne Cox is an actress, reality television star, television producer, and transgender rights advocate. She is known for portraying Sophia Burset, a trans woman sent to prison for credit-card fraud, in the Netflix series Orange is the New Black.

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Jennifer Denetdale

Jennifer Denetdale is the first Diné/Navajo individual to earn a Ph.D. in history. She is an Associate Professor of American Studies at University of New Mexico and teaches courses in Native American Studies. Denetdale is especially interested in gender and feminism in conjunction with Navajo history and culture. She is the author of Reclaiming Diné History: The Legacies of Navajo Chief Manuelito and Juanita and The Long Walk: The Forced Exile of the Navajo and is currently working on a research project regarding the history of Navajo women.

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Gracia Molia de Pick

Gracia Molia de Pick (b. 1929) began her activism young; at just 16 she founded Partido Popular, the only political party in Mexico at the time advocating for women’s suffrage. After moving to California in 1957, she earned two Education degrees. Later in life Molina de Pick founded several programs of study, including Chicana & Chicano Studies at Mesa College and Third World Studies at the University of California, San Diego.   She went on to start many organizations advocating equality for women, including the premier Chicana feminist association in Mexico. Her many achievements were celebrated in San Diego, California on January 12, 2010 for Gracia Molina de Pick day.

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Donna de Varona

Donna de Varona is an American former competitive swimmer, Olympic gold medalist, former world record-holder, and television sportscaster. In 1960, at age 13, Donna qualified for her first U.S. Olympic swimming team. She already held the world record in the 400-meter individual medley, but the event was not included in the Olympic games. At the summer Olympics in Rome, she swam for the gold medal-winning U.S. team in the preliminary heats of the women’s 4x100 freestyle relay, but did not receive a medal because she did not swim in the final event. At the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo, she won the gold medal in the women’s 400-meter individual medley, beating her competition by a margin of six seconds and setting an Olympic record. After appearing on the covers of Sports Illustrated, Look, and Life magazines, de Varona was voted the “Most Outstanding Woman Athlete in the World” by the Associated Press and United Press International. Since few sports opportunities were available for women in sports in American high schools and colleges, de Varona retired from her sport and began her career in the male-dominated world of sports broadcasting.

 

 

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Juanita Diaz-Cotto

Dr. Diaz-Cotto has authored several books advocating for Latinas and other people of color including Chicana Lives and Criminal Justice: Voices from El Barrio and Gender, Ethnicity, and the State: Latina and Latino Prison Politics. Under the name Juanita Ramos, she compiled a set of oral histories, short stories, and artwork in the book Compañeras: Latina Lesbians.  This anthology, originally published in 1987, was the first of its kind, providing an outlet for Latina women to speak about their experiences. Dr. Diaz-Cotto now teaches at the State University of New York at Binghamton. She is a Professor of Sociology, Latin American and Caribbean Area Studies (LACAS), and Women’s Studies, as well as the director of their LACAS program.

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Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass (1818-1895) was an American social reformer, orator, and writer. After escaping slavery, he became a leader of the abolotionist movement and produced several abolitionist newspapers. In 1848, Douglass attended the first women's rights convention, the Seneca Falls Convention. Douglass stood and spoke eloquently in favor of women's suffrage, stating that he could not accept the right to vote as a black man if women could not also claim that right. He suggested that the world would be a better place if women were involved in the political sphere. "In this denial of the right to participate in government, not merely the degradation of woman and the perpetuation of a great injustice happens, but the maiming and repudiation of one-half of the moral and intellectual power of the government of the world."

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Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass, born Frederick Augustus Washington Bailey, was born a slave in approximately 1818 in Maryland. In 1838, Douglass escaped slavery and made his way to New York, though he would eventually settle in Massachusetts. He became an anti-slavery lecturer, and participated in the American Anti-Slavery Society’s Hundred Conventions project. Douglass also produced a wealth of abolitionist newspapers, including The North Star, New National Era, and Frederick Douglass Weekly. In 1848 he attended the Seneca Falls Convention and worked continuously for women’s rights. In 1872, Douglass was the first African American nominated for Vice President of the United States on the Equal Rights Party ticket, though he never campaigned nor acknowledged the nomination. He died in 1895, shortly after returning from a meeting of the National Council of Women in Washington, D.C. He was buried in Mount Hope Cemetery.

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Jack Drescher

Jack Drescher is a member of the American Psychiatric Association subcommittee working on revisions to its widlely used Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Health Disorders (DSM). One revision will include a change in language from "Gender Identity Disorder" to "Gender Dysphoria." The language change came as a result of years of lobbying by advocates who felt that term "Gender Identity Disorder" as a classification for mental illness implied that all transgender individuals are mentally ill. The new language diagnoses individuals with Gender Dysphoria as displaying "a marked incongruence between one's experienced/expressed gender and assigned gender." While some advocates feel that this is not an adequate change, many agree that it is a great step forward in the conversation about civil rights and transgender individuals. Some see it as mirriong the removal of "homosexuality" from the DSM in 1973.

 

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Carolyn Eisenman

Carolyn was the first Women’s Studies graduate from the University of Rochester in 1984. Since then, she has held professional positions in education, banking, high tech and consulting firms, and health care.

Carolyn says, “I am working for URMC’s Information Systems Division as an e-Record Credentialed Trainer, and began that role in January of this year.  I train Providers and Nurses in the use of the Ambulatory Electronic Medical Records System and provide telephone and on-site support to various departments.

I turned 50 years old this past week, and had a fabulous time celebrating with my friends and family.  My husband and two ‘children’ (21 and 19 years old) went to Miami for a fun vacation/birthday celebration in March, and my husband and I traveled to Israel this past December to visit our son who was there for 5 months with a program for Jewish youth. A wonderful trip – I highly recommend it!”

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Eve Ensler

Eve Ensler is widely known as the writer of the The Vagina Monologues. Ensler helped begin the anti-violence movement V-Day in 1998. V-Day’s mission calls for the end of violence against women: “rape, incest, battery, genital mutilation and sexual slavery must end now.” The movement works raises money through benefit performances of Ensler’s play, to advocate for the implementation of educational campaigns and legislation to stop the abuse of women. 

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Family Service Rochester

Family Service Rochester was founded in 1965 as a nonprofit organization with a staff of three and the mission to support and enhance the dignity and quality of life for individuals and families in our community. For the past 15 years, Family Service Rochester has sharpened its focus to working with families with serious child welfare and/or family violence concerns. Major service expansions have been in the areas of child maltreatment, child welfare, children’s mental health, domestic violence and providing our services to ethnically diverse populations in our community. Family Service Rochester provides domestic violence support groups for men, women and children. Today the agency provides more than 30 programs to meet ever-changing community needs. Our staff of over 85 provides a wide range of human services that educate, strengthen, support, protect and empower individuals and families in our community.

 

 

 

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Sandra Fluke

Sandra fluke is an attorney who first came to public attention when, in February 2012, Republican members of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee refused to allow her to testify to that committee on the importance of requiring insurance plans to cover birth control during a discussion on whether medical insurance should have a contraception mandate. Fluke co-founded the New York Statewide Coalition for Fair Access to Family Court, which successfully advocated for unmarried victims of domestic violence, including teen LGBTQ victims. Fluke was also a member of the Manhattan Borough President's Taskforce on Domestic Violence./

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Brenda Flyswithhawks

Brenda Flyswithhawks (b. 1950) is a member of the Eastern Band of the Tsalagi (Cherokee) Nation and an American Indian activist and educator, as welll as traditional dancer, singer, drummer, and storyteller. She is one of the first women of the Cherokee Nation to receive a Ph.D. and works as an advocate for the American Indian community both within and across cultural circles. She teaches at Santa Rose Junior College and initiated the SEED (Seeking Educational Equity and Diversity) Project in 1995. She is now co-director of the national SEED Project based at the Center for Research on Women at Wellesley College.

 

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Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)

Fried Green Tomatoes tells the story of a Depression-era friendship between two women, Ruth and Idgie, and a 1980s friendship between a middle-aged housewife and an elderly woman who knew Ruth and Idgie. The centerpiece and parallel story concerns the murder of Ruth's abusive husband and the accusations that follow. As Livengood put cecinctly in her short essay on feminism in Fried Green Tomatoes, the film "represents interesting conflicts and negotiations between sentimentality, feminism, post feminism, and lesbian love.

Portrait

Matilda Joslyn Gage

Matilda Joslyn Gage was a suffragist, a Native American activist, an abolitionist, a free thinker, a prolific author, and self-described as “a natural hatred for oppression.” Even though her life was plagued by both financial and physical (cardiac) problems, she devoted it to reaching true equality for all. She became involved in the Women’s Rights movement in 1852 when she spoke at the National Women’s Rights Convention in Syracuse, NY. She served as president of the National Woman Suffrage Association from 1875 to 1876, and during the 1876 convention, she successfully argued against a group of police who claimed the association was holding an illegal assembly. Gage is considered more radical than Susan B. Anthony or Elizabeth Cady Stanton because of her criticism of the Christian church. In 1871, Gage and a group of 9 other women attempted to vote, and when they were denied, she argued with the polling officials on behalf of each woman, and in 1873 defended Susan B. Anthony when Anthony was placed on trial for voting in the election. In 1884, Gage was an Elector-At-Large for the Equal Rights Party. She also founded the Women’s National Liberal Union, and in 1893 she published Woman, Church and State, a book which outlined the variety of ways in which Christianity had oppressed women and reinforced patriarchal systems.

 

Portrait

Matilda Joslyn Gage

Matilda Joslyn Gage was a suffragist, a Native American activist, an abolitionist, a free thinker, a prolific author, and self-described as “a natural hatred for oppression.” Even though her life was plagued by both financial and physical (cardiac) problems, she devoted it to reaching true equality for all. She became involved in the Women’s Rights movement in 1852 when she spoke at the National Women’s Rights Convention in Syracuse, NY. She served as president of the National Woman Suffrage Association from 1875 to 1876, and during the 1876 convention, she successfully argued against a group of police who claimed the association was holding an illegal assembly. Gage is considered more radical than Susan B. Anthony or Elizabeth Cady Stanton because of her criticism of the Christian church. In 1871, Gage and a group of 9 other women attempted to vote, and when they were denied, she argued with the polling officials on behalf of each woman, and in 1873 defended Susan B. Anthony when Anthony was placed on trial for voting in the election. In 1884, Gage was an Elector-At-Large for the Equal Rights Party. She also founded the Women’s National Liberal Union, and in 1893 she published Woman, Church and State, a book which outlined the variety of ways in which Christianity had oppressed women and reinforced patriarchal systems.

 

Portrait

Kasturba Gandhi

Kasturba Gandhi worked closely with her husband, Mohandas Gandhi. When her husband became involved in the movement to improve working conditions for Indians in South Africa, Kasturba Gandhi joined the struggle, eventually being arrested and spending three months in a hard-labor prison. Gandhi spoke on her husband’s behalf when he was imprisoned, and was closely associated with the struggle in India, often giving encouragement to female volunteers.

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Tavi Gevinson

Tavi Gevinson, now 18, founded the fashion blog StyleRookie at age 11. The blog gained an astoundingly large audience - so large that The New York Times interviewed her for an article on young bloggers. With such great popularity came critics and backlashes because of her success as a young person. New York Magazine questioned the legitimacy of her work, not believing that it could have been written by such a young person. Gevinson proved critics wrong, created a safe space for young writers, and began the now hugely popular online magazine, Rookie. Rookie's main contributors are young women and the magazine focuses largely on issues impacting teenage women.

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Fabiola Gianotti

Fabiola Gianotti is an Italian particle physicist, a former spokesperson of the ATLAS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN in Switzerland, considered one of the world's biggest scientific experiments. She made particularly important contributions to a piece of hardware known as the liquid-argon calorimeter, which detects electromagnetic energy.

 

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Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Ruth Bader Ginsburg graduated first in her class from Columbia Law School, going on to become a strong courtroom advocate for the fair treatment of women and working with the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project. She was appointed by President Carter to the U.S. Court of Appeals in 1980 and was appointed to the Supreme Court by President Clinton in 1993. She is the second female justice (after Sandra Day O'Connor) and the first Jewish female justice.

 

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Barbara Gittings

Barbara Gittings (1932-2007) was a prominent activist for gay equality. She organized the New York chapter of the Daughters of Bilitis (DOB), the first lesbian rights organization in the United States. She also served as editor for The Ladder, the national DOB magazine, from 1963-1966. Gittings was prominent in the first protests against the U.S. government’s ban on the employment of LGBT individuals and, among her many accomplishments, she formed the first professional gay caucus within the American Library Association.

Portrait

Whoopi Goldberg

Whoopi Goldberg is a comedian, actress, singer-songwriter, political activist, author, and talk show host. Her breakthrough role was also in The Color Purple, playing Celie in the film version. She won an Academy Award for her performance in the 1990 film Ghost, making her the second black woman to win an Oscar for acting—the first was in 1939.  Goldberg won a Tony for Best Musical for her production of Thoroughly Modern Millie in 2002. She is one of the very few entertainers to have won an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony Award. Her incredibly successful acting career allowed her to support many causes focusing on LGBT rights and AIDS activism. She is currently the moderator of the daytime talk show The View.

 

Portrait

Whoopi Goldberg

Whoopi Goldberg is a comedian, actress, singer-songwriter, political activist, author, and talk show host. Her breakthrough role was also in The Color Purple, playing Celie in the film version. She won an Academy Award for her performance in the 1990 film Ghost, making her the second black woman to win an Oscar for acting—the first was in 1939.  Goldberg won a Tony for Best Musical for her production of Thoroughly Modern Millie in 2002. She is one of the very few entertainers to have won an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony Award. Her incredibly successful acting career allowed her to support many causes focusing on LGBT rights and AIDS activism. She is currently the moderator of the daytime talk show The View.

 

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Claudia L. Gordon

Dr. Claudia L. Gordon, ESQ is the first African American, deaf, and female lawyer. She was born in Jamaica and became deaf at 8 years old. The discrimination she faced as a deaf child in Jamaica inspired her to seek social justice and equal opportunity for differently abled individuals. She became passionate about pursuing law as a means to achieving justice, so she moved to the United States where she attended the Lexington School for the Deaf in New York. After receiving a BA in Political Science from Howard University, Gordon was the first deaf student to graduate from American University Washington College of Law in 2000. Her specialization was in disability rights and policy. Gordon has been awarded many honors and fellowships throughout her legal career, enabling her to work for the National Association of the Deaf Law and Advocacy Center. She was able to provide free legal services for poor deaf individuals, particularly individuals from a racial and ethnic minority groups. Gordon became a consultant for the National Council on Disability. She then received the position of senior policy advisor for the Department of Homeland Security, Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties; When Hurricane Katrina hit, Gordon worked to ensure that the needs of disabled individuals were met during the disaster. She was awarded the Gold Medal Award and the 2005 Hurricane Response Award from the Secretary of Homeland Security for her efforts.

 

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Michelle Gordon

Michelle Gordon received her M.A. in African-American Studies and Ph. D. in English from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Southern California. She specializes in American Literature and African-American Studies, with an emphasis on literary radicalism, intellectual history, black women’s studies, and urban cultural studies in the nineteenth- and twentieth-century U.S. She has published a book chapter entitled “Somewhat Like War: The Aesthetics of Segregation, Black Liberation, and A Raisin in the Sun”, and her book manuscript “Bringing Down Babylon: The Chicago Renaissance, the Black Arts Movement, and African American Freedom Struggles, 1931-1969” offers a literary history of black Chicago’s two most vibrant literary movements. Gordon will give this year's Two Icons Lecture, “Baby, You Could be Jesus in Drag: Lorraine Hansberry and Black Domestic Workers on Being The Help,” on Wednesday, February 29 at 5pm in the Welles-Brown Room, Rush Rhees Library, University of Rochester.

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Laura Jane Grace

Laura Jane Grace is an American musician best known as the founder, lead singer, songwriter and guitarist of the punk rock band Against Me!. Having dealt with gender dysphoria since childhood, Grace publicly came out as a transgender woman in 2012. Against Me!'s sixth studio album, Transgender Dysphoria Blues, was released on January 21, 2014.

 

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Charlotte Forten Grimke

Charlotte Forten Grimke (1837 – 1914) was raised in a wealthy, black abolitionist family. She studied literature and teaching and joined the Salem Female Anti-Slavery Society. Grimke went on to teach white children in Massachusetts, and was the first black woman to do so. A champion for education, Grimke taught freed slaves in South Carolina, and later recruited educators in partnership with the United States Treasury in Washington, D.C.  

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Juanita Hall

Juanita Hall, born in 1901, was a musical theater and film actress best remembered for her roles in the stage and screen versions of the Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals South Pacific and Flower Drum Song. Hall was trained at the Juilliard School of Music and Drama, and her expansive repertoire ranged from popular songs of the day to folk music and the blues. In 1950, she became the first African American to win a Tony Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role as Bloody Mary in South Pacific. She played this role for 1,925 performances on Broadway. She was a successful blues singer until her death at age 66 due to complications from diabetes.

Portrait

Juanita Hall

Juanita Hall, born in 1901, was a musical theater and film actress best remembered for her roles in the stage and screen versions of the Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals South Pacific and Flower Drum Song. Hall was trained at the Juilliard School of Music and Drama, and her expansive repertoire ranged from popular songs of the day to folk music and the blues. In 1950, she became the first African American to win a Tony Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role as Bloody Mary in South Pacific. She played this role for 1,925 performances on Broadway. She was a successful blues singer until her death at age 66 due to complications from diabetes.

Portrait

Lorraine Hansberry

Lorraine Hansberry was an American playwright whose A Raisin in the Sun (1959) was the first drama by an African American woman to be produced on Broadway. The play highlighted racial segregation in Chicago, something Hansberry’s family had personal experience with while she was growing up. In 1950, she moved to New York City to attend The New School and pursue her career as a writer.  She soon moved to Harlem and became involved in activist struggles, including the fight against evictions. She was only 29 years old when A Raisin in the Sun was first performed on Broadway. Over the next two years, the play was translated into 35 languages and performed all over the world. She died at the age of 34 from an aggressive strain of pancreatic cancer. Her play was nominated for a Tony award for Best Play in 1960, and a musical based on the play won Best Musical in 1973, after her death.

 

Portrait

Lorraine Hansberry

Lorraine Hansberry was an American playwright whose A Raisin in the Sun (1959) was the first drama by an African American woman to be produced on Broadway. The play highlighted racial segregation in Chicago, something Hansberry’s family had personal experience with while she was growing up. In 1950, she moved to New York City to attend The New School and pursue her career as a writer.  She soon moved to Harlem and became involved in activist struggles, including the fight against evictions. She was only 29 years old when A Raisin in the Sun was first performed on Broadway. Over the next two years, the play was translated into 35 languages and performed all over the world. She died at the age of 34 from an aggressive strain of pancreatic cancer. Her play was nominated for a Tony award for Best Play in 1960, and a musical based on the play won Best Musical in 1973, after her death.

 

Portrait

Lorraine Hansberry

Lorraine Hansberry was born in 1930 in Chicago, Illinois. She attended the University of Wisconsin for two years before leaving to pursue a writing career in New York City, where she attended The New School. Hansberry worked on the black newspaper Freedom while in New York, at which time she was also writing her best known work, A Raisin in the Sun. A Raisin in the Sun was a huge success, and was the first play written by an African-American woman to be produced on Broadway. At 29 years old, Hansberry was the youngest American playwright and only the fifth woman to receive the New York Drama Critics Award for Best Play. She died at age 34 after a long battle with pancreatic cancer.

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Patricia Roberts Harris

Patricia Roberts Harris, born May 31, 1924, graduated Howard University in 1945 with highest distinction. In 1943 she participated in one of the first lunch counter sit-ins where she met her future husband, William Beasley Harris. She pursued post-graduate work at the University of Chicago and at American University. Harris began working for the United States government as an attorney for the Department of Justice. It was there that she developed a friendship with the new Attorney General Robert Kennedy. She was appointed the co-chairperson of the National Women's Committee for Civil Rights by President John F. Kennedy in 1963. A year later, Harris was elected as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention and worked on Lyndon Johnson’s presidential campaign. In 1965, President Johnson appointed Harris as the Ambassador to Luxembourg, making her the first African American woman to serve as a United States Ambassador. She served on President Jimmy Carter’s cabinet when he began his term in 1977, which incidentally made her the first African American woman to be in the Presidential line of succession. Harris also served as the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development and the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare. She lost an election in 1982 for Mayor of Washington, D.C. but accepted a full-time professorship at the George Washington National Law Center. She died of breast cancer in 1985 at the age of 60.

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Renée Heininger

Renée Heininger currently serves on the Board of Directors at Students Active for Ending Rape and as the Volunteer Coordinator of Girls Rock! Rochester. She also works in the Department of English at the University of Rochester. She has previously worked as an STIs & HIV Educator (Volunteer) for Peer Health Exchange, and as a Math & Literacy Tutor for NYU America Reads & America Counts. She graduated from NYU with a B.S. with Honors in Media, Culture, and Communication.

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Joseph "Joss" Hill Whedon

Joseph Hill “Joss” Whedon is an American screenwriter, executive producer, and director. He is best known for creating the television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Firefly, and Dollhouse. Whedon is a self-identified feminist, and credits his mother, Lee Stearns, for his worldview. He was honored at an Equality Now benefit, “Honoring Men on the Front Lines,” in 2006. Whedon says that he is an activist “Because it’s no longer enough to be a decent person. It’s no longer enough to shake our heads and make concerned grimaces at the news. True enlightened activism is the only thing that can save humanity from itself.”

Portrait

Jennifer Holliday

Jennifer Holliday was a Broadway actress who landed the role of Effie in the 1981 production of Dreamgirls at the age of 21. She remained with the show for four years after it opened and was widely acclaimed. In 1982, she won many awards for this performance, including the Tony for Best Leading Actress in a Musical, a Grammy for her recorded version of one of the musical’s songs, and Drama Desk and Theater World awards for her performance. After Dreamgirls, she continued to have success as a recording artist, with several songs at the top of the Billboard R&B Singles chart. Holliday is popular with LGBT events and fundraisers and has made many appearances at Pride events. This January, to the excitement of her many fans, Holliday released her first album since 1991.

 

Portrait

Jennifer Holliday

Jennifer Holliday was a Broadway actress who landed the role of Effie in the 1981 production of Dreamgirls at the age of 21. She remained with the show for four years after it opened and was widely acclaimed. In 1982, she won many awards for this performance, including the Tony for Best Leading Actress in a Musical, a Grammy for her recorded version of one of the musical’s songs, and Drama Desk and Theater World awards for her performance. After Dreamgirls, she continued to have success as a recording artist, with several songs at the top of the Billboard R&B Singles chart. Holliday is popular with LGBT events and fundraisers and has made many appearances at Pride events. This January, to the excitement of her many fans, Holliday released her first album since 1991.

 

Portrait

Evelyn Hooker

Evelyn Hooker (1907-1966) was a psychologist whose path-breaking study argued and gave evidence that homosexuality was not a mental disorder (as it had been widely-described during that time), but a variance of human sexuality. Hooker’s study, first published in 1957 in the Journal of Projective Techniques, served as a foundation for most political and philosophical work dealing with LGBTQ rights. Her work was integral in the successful removal of homosexuality from the American Psychiatric Association (APA) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Hooker was awarded the APA's Award for Distinguished Contribution to Psychology in the Public Interest in 1991.

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Grace Murray Hopper

Grace Murray Hopper was a computer scientist and United States Navy Rear Admiral. She was born in 1906 in New York City and expressed interest in mathematics and technology from a very young age. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Vassar College in 1928 with a degree in math and physics. She went on to earn her Master’s degree from Yale in 1930.  She obtained her Ph.D. in math from Yale in 1934 and then began teaching at Vassar in 1941. Hopper took a leave of absence during World War II in 1943 and was sworn into the US Navy Reserve. She trained at the Naval Reserve Midshipmen’s School and graduated first in her class. She was assigned to the Bureau of Ships Computation Project at Harvard University as a lieutenant, junior grade. She continued working at the Harvard Computation lab until 1949, when she took a job with the Eckert-Mauchly Computer Corporation as a senior mathematician. She contributed to defining the computer language, COBOL, which is the most ubiquitous business language to date. Hopper retired from the Naval Reserve at age 60 with the rank of Commander, but was recalled to active duty indefinitely in 1967. After appearing in 60 Minutes, the U.S. House of Representatives promoted her to commodore by special presidential appointment. She officially retired in 1986 and was awarded the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, the highest non-combat award possible by the Department of Defense. At the time of her retirement, she was the oldest active-duty commissioned officer in the United States (nearly 80 years old). She passed away in 1992 at 85 years old.

 

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Erika Howard

Erika Howard is an English major with a minor in Women's Studies. She served as an student office assistant at SBAI from 2010-2013. She also has served as the president of the Undergraduate Council in Gender and Women's Studies, and the VOX (Voices for Planned Parenthood) liason for the University of Rochester Women's Caucus. She served as the Arts and Enterntainment Editor for the University of Rochester Campus Times Newspaper for 2012, and as the Marketing Intern for Wilson Commons Students Union during the Spring 2012 semester. She was the 2012 recipient of the Fannie Bigelow Prize. Learn more about her at LinkedIn!

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Dolores Huerta

Dolores Huerta is known internationally for her work to improve the social and economic conditions for farm workers, immigrants, and women.  Born in 1930 in New Mexico, she worked briefly as an elementary school teacher and saw her students, children of farm workers, living in poverty.  In response to this, she helped to found the Stockton chapter of the Community Services Organization which worked to improve social and economic conditions for farm workers and to fight discrimination. In 1962, she co-founded a worker’s union with Cesar Chavez, later known as the United Farm Workers. She retired from UFW in 1999 but continues to be an avid activist. She has received many awards for her work, including the Ellis Island Medal of Freedom Award and the Eleanor Roosevelt Award. She was inducted to the National Women’s Hall of Fame in 1993 and was a recipient of the 2011 Medal of Freedom. Her rallying cry, Si Se Puede, has been adopted by various labor unions, civil rights organizations, and activists throughout the country.

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Marsha P. Johnson

Marsha P. Johnson (1944-1992) was a transgender LGBTQ rights activist and a popular figure in the New York City art scene from the 1960s through the 1990s. She was a leader in clashes with the police amid the Stonewall Riots in 1969, and a co-founder of Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR). When a judge asked Johnson what the "P" in her name stood for, she replied “Pay It No Mind." The statement became her signature phrase. Johnson was photographed for an Andy Warhol series and interviewed by Allen Young for his book Out of the Closets: Voices of Gay Liberation.

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Barbara Charline Jordan

After unsuccessful campaigns in 1962 and 1964, Barbara Charline Jordan finally won a seat in the Texas House of Representatives in 1966. This election made her the first African American to be elected to the Texas Senate since 1883 and the first African American woman to be elected to the position. After serving in the Texas Senate until 1972, Jordan was elected to United States Congress. Former President Lyndon B. Johnson supported Johnson, assisting her in securing a spot on the House Judiciary Committee. In 1975 she was appointed to the Democratice Steering and Policy Committee. There was talk of Jordan being Jimmy Carter’s potential running mate in 1976 but instead she delivered the keynote at the Democratic National Convention, the first African American woman to do so. In 1979 Jordan retired from politics and began teaching ethics at the University of Texas at Austin. Suffering from Multiple Sclerosis and Leukemia, Jordan passed away in 1996 at the age of 59, survived by her long-term partner Nancy Earl.

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Frida Kahlo

Kahlo was an influential and prolific artist active in the 20th century. Her story is fraught with tragedy:  polio, a terrible bus accident, and many surgeries; despite the catastrophes she faced, Kahlo was an avid painter, using her life as inspiration for her work. Kahlo was very political, actively demonstrating her support for communism. She married painter Diego Rivera, but was very open about her bisexuality. Kahlo is viewed as a feminist and a pillar of strength in many communities.

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Michael Scott Kimmel

Michael Scott Kimmel is an American sociologist specializing in gender studies. He is currently a Distinguished Professor at SUNY Stony Brook, and the editor of Men and Masculinities, a peer-reviewed academic journal of men’s studies, feminism, protofeminism, multiculturalism, and queer theory. Kimmel has published many male-focused feminist pieces, including “Changing Men: New Directions in the Study of Men and Masculinity”, “The Gendered Society”, “Against the Tide: Pro-Feminist Men in the U.S., 1776-1990”, and many more.

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Madison Kimrey

Madison Kimrey is a 12-year-old living in North Carolina and fighting to reinstate voter preregistration for 16 and 17 year olds. Preregistration was eliminated by a bill signed into law by Governor Pat McCrory. Kimey collected over 12,000 signatures in a petition in support of her mission. When she requested a meeting with McCrory, he declared the request "ridiculous" and she was told that she was a mere "prop" for left political groups. Kimrey started the NC Youth Rock movement in response.

In response, Kimrey started a movement called NC Youth Rock in support of the voices of young people in North Carolina. Her speech at a local rally won national attention—which she's using to reach even more young people with her message. In regards to those who suggested she was a "prop" for the left, Kimrey said

"I want to remind them that I’m raising awareness on the issue of pre-registration to help kids on the right, too. The majority of teens here in NC who pre-registered did that as independents. That means these teenagers are sending a message they want to consider all the candidates and positions on the issues before they make a choice on who to vote for. That’s responsible citizenship. One of the points I’ve seen made in favor of pre-registration is that having more young people registered to vote will mean candidates will be more inclined to target young voters and will have to keep them in mind when developing their platforms. Considering that we are going to be the ones running the country someday, I think this is a good thing." -via Quiet Mike

 

Portrait

Beyoncé Knowles-Carter

A self-described "modern-day feminist,” Beyoncé's songs are often characterized by themes of love, relationships, and monogamy, as well as female sexuality and empowerment. On stage, her dynamic, highly-choreographed performances have led to critics hailing her as one of the best entertainers in contemporary popular music. Throughout a career spanning 16 years, she has won 17 Grammy Awards and sold over 118 million records as a solo artist and 60 million with Destiny's Child, making her one of the best-selling music artists of all time.

 

Portrait

Lydia Ko

Lydia Ko is a New Zealand professional golfer, originally from Seoul, South Korea. She started playing golf as a five-year-old when her mother took her into a pro shop at the Pupuke Gold Club on Auckland’s North Shore. The shop was owned by Guy Wilson, who has been her coach ever since. She had been the top-ranked woman amateur golfer for over two years when she announced that she was turning professional in October of 2013. She became the youngest person ever to win an LPGA Tour event. In August 2013, she became the only amateur to win two LPGA Tour events. As an amateur she never missed a cut in 25 professional tournaments, and by September 2013 had risen to fifth in the Women’s World Gold Rankings in only 23 professional tournaments.

 

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Anuradha Koirala

Anuradha Koirala is the founder and director of the non-profit organization Maiti Nepal, dedicated to aiding victims of sex trafficking. Maiti Nepal runs a rehabilitation center in a home in Kathmandu. The organization is aptly named -- “Maiti” means “mother’s home” in Nepali. The home serves as a safe haven for women coming from the brothels of India. The program provides services to these women until they can  return to their homes or are ready to live on their own. The organization coordinates with police on the India-Nepal border to reunite these women with their families and rescue more women from brothels with Indian authorities’ help. In 2010, Kiorala won the CNN Hero award and received $100,000 for her organization. The United States government awarded Maiti Nepal a two year $500,000 grant in April 2010.

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Rhonda LaChanze Sapp

Rhonda LaChanze Sapp, known professionally as LaChanze, is best known for her performance as Celie in The Color Purple, for which she won a Tony Award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical. Her character in the play, Celie, faces tragedy and takes a lifetime to heal and a lifetime to realize that finding love is a new beginning. This part was all too fitting for LaChanze to play—her husband Calvin Gooding died in the 9/11 attacks, devastating LaChanze and her two daughters. She has been in several other Broadway shows including Dreamgirls, Once on This Island, and If/Then, which will start performances this March. LaChanze is also known for her work on the silver screen, including The Help and Side Effects.

 

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Rhonda LaChanze Sapp

Rhonda LaChanze Sapp, known professionally as LaChanze, is best known for her performance as Celie in The Color Purple, for which she won a Tony Award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical. Her character in the play, Celie, faces tragedy and takes a lifetime to heal and a lifetime to realize that finding love is a new beginning. This part was all too fitting for LaChanze to play—her husband Calvin Gooding died in the 9/11 attacks, devastating LaChanze and her two daughters. She has been in several other Broadway shows including Dreamgirls, Once on This Island, and If/Then, which will start performances this March. LaChanze is also known for her work on the silver screen, including The Help and Side Effects.

 

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Christine Lagarde

Christine Lagarde is the first female managing director of the 188-country International Monetary Fund. She has spent much of her first two years on the job battling the debt crisis in Europe and calling for ailing global economies to accelerate steps for stable growth. Her push for debt-sharing between EU nations and an increase in rescue funds has faced resistance from fellow powerful woman Angela Merkel, chancellor of Germany. Before her appointment at the IMF, she served as France’s Trade Minister between 2005 and 2007. In 2007, she became the first woman to hold the post of Finance and Economy Minister of a G-7 country (U.S., Japan, France, Germany, Italy, U.K., and Canada). She is a former member of the French national synchronized swimming team and is the mother of two sons.

 

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Mary Lambert

Mary Lambert is a Seattle-based singer-songwriter and spoken word artist. She worked with Macklemore & Ryan Lewis on a track on their album The Heist. Lambert is the featured singer and songwriter of their gay rights single, "Same Love". Lambert was nominated for two Grammys, and in January 2013, she independently released a book of poetry titled 500 Tips for Fat Girls. Her career has been inspirational to many: “After a show over the summer, a girl came up to me who was a pastor at her church, which was not accepting of same-sex relationships. She said that ‘Same Love’ allowed her to come out regardless of the consequences. The fact that music was able to do that? That I could have been a part of that, and that she felt safe enough to tell me? I know how strong you have to be to do that. If I can give that fight to somebody, then I want to keep doing it.”

 

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Julianne Lawlor

Julie graduated from the University in 2009, and is spending the summer working in Spain as an au pair for a Spanish family. She previously worked as a nanny in San Francisco, and wanted to au pair in order to travel and see what family life is like on a day-to-day basis in a different country.

Julie says, “I am really enjoying my time with my Spanish family, especially the time I have spent on the sailboat that the father of the family both designed and built by hand. A Coruña is a beautiful city, with a lighthouse and security wall built during the Middle Ages. I am currently training for my first half marathon, and this beautiful trail is definitely making my training more enjoyable. I plan to spend the fall in San Francisco, and then I may be moving to Brazil sometime around December to au pair in Sao Paulo for a family I used to work for in San Francisco.

Women's Studies opened my eyes to a lot of things that, while I may have understood on a basic level, I did not know how to articulate. That's what I found so intriguing about the field. Some gender inequalities that now appear so blatant to me, were hidden because I grew up accepting that they were normal and not to be questioned. I feel similarly about traveling. I think that understanding new cultures is helping me to better analyze my own culture. “

 

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Linda Legarde Grover

Linda LeGarde Grover is a member of the Bois Forte Band of Chippewa and an assistant professor of American Indian Studies at the University of Minnesota Duluth. She is also a columnist for the Duluth Budgeteer. The Dance Boots, her debut story collection, was  the winner of the 2010 Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize and co-winner of the 2009 Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction. She is the coauthor of A Childhood in Minnesota: Exploring the Lives of Ojibwe and Immigrant Families 1880–1920, and the author of a poetry chapbook, The Indian at Indian School. In April 2012, LeGarde Grover received the Albert Tezla Teacher/Scholar Award from the University of Minnesota Duluth.

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Linda LeGarde Grover

Linda LeGarde Grover is a member of the Bois Forte Band of Ojibwe and an assistant professor of American Indian Studies at the University of Minnesota Duluth. The Dance Boots, her debut story collection, was co-winner of the 2009 Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction.  She is the coauthor of A Childhood in Minnesota: Exploring the Lives of Ojibwe and Immigrant Families 1880–1920, and the author of a poetry chapbook, The Indian at Indian School. She is the winner of the 2011 Kafka Prize for Fiction for The Dance Boots.

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Ursula LeGuin

Ursula LeGuin was born in Berkeley, California. She writes both poetry and prose in various modes, including realistic fiction, science fiction, fantasy, young children’s books, screenplays, essays, verbal text for musicians, and voice texts. She has published seven books of poetry, twenty-two novels, eleven volumes of short stories, four collections of essays, twelve books for children, and four volumes of translation. A few of the awards she has won for her prolific work include the Hugo Award, the Nebula Award, the National Book Award, and the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize for Fiction for Always Coming Home in 1985.

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Robin Lim

Robin Lim, colloquially referred to as “Mother Robin,” founded Yayasan Bumi Sehat (Healthy Mother Earth Foundation) after complications in her sister’s pregnancy lead to the death of both her sister and the child in 2003. Lim moved to Indonesia to open up a clinic in order to provide midwife services and free prenatal care to low-income women. By public vote on CNN News Network’s website, Lim was awarded the CNN Hero of the Year award in 2011 and given $250,000 to continue to work.  The Healthy Mother Earth Foundation has help thousands of Indonesian women go through pregnancy and give birth safely.

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Lorde

Lorde is a 17-year-old New Zealand singer-songwriter. She was nominated for four Grammys: Record of the Year, Best Pop Solo Performance and Song of the Year for "Royals" and Best Pop Vocal Album for Pure Heroine. Lorde won both Song of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance for her debut single "Royals". She is openly feminist, and has said that “I’m speaking for a bunch of girls when I say that the idea that feminism is completely natural and shouldn’t even be something that people find mildly surprising, it’s just a part of being a girl in 2013.”

 

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Audre Lorde

Audre Lorde was in 1934 in New York City to Caribbean immigrants from Grenada. A writer, poet, and activist, she wrote her first poem when she was eight. Lorde attended Hunter College, but spent a year as a student at the National University of Mexico, and upon her return to New York confirmed her identity as a poet and a lesbian. She earned her master’s degree in Library Science from Columbia University. Lorde’s poetry was published very regularly during the 1960s, at which time she was very politically active in the civil rights, antiwar, and feminist movements. In 1980, she co-founded Kitchen Table: Women of Color Press, the first U.S. publisher for women of color. Lorde was also State Poet of New York from 1991-1992. Lorde battled cancer for 14 years; she was first diagnosed with Breast Cancer in 1978 and underwent a mastectomy, and 6 years later was diagnosed with Liver Cancer, from which she died in 1992.

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Jane Lynch

Jane Lynch is a Golden Globe and Emmy-Award winning film and television actress. She is best known for her role as Coach Sue Sylvester on the TV series Glee. In 2005, she was named one of Power Up's "10 Amazing Gay Women in Showbiz."

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Gloria Malone

Since 2011 Gloria Malone, 22, has used her blog Teen Mom NYC to build an online community to help empower peer pregnant and parenting teens across the country. Throughout Gloria’s writing, whether it’s a quick post about resources for parenting teen or an op-ed in The New York Times, her dedication to her community and her commitment to achieve greater justice for young parents powerfully resounds.

Gloria advocates for the importance of supportingnot shaming pregnant and parenting teens, as well as the necessity for comprehensive sexual education in all schools, birth choice, and reproductive justice. Just a few months ago, she joined activists at the steps of the Supreme Courtto speak out for women’s reproductive rights as the Court began to hear Hobby Lobby. Along with all of this incredible activism, Gloria is also in the process of wrapping up her bachelors degree in Public Affairs from Baruch College in NYC. And to take her rockstar status to the supreme level, she’s the proud mama of Leilani.

Source.

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Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela is a South African anti-apartheid revolutionary and politician who served as President of South Africa from 1994-1999. He was the first black South African to hold the office, and the first elected in a fully representative, multiracial election. His government focused on dismantling the legacy of apartheid through tackling institutionalized racism, poverty, and inequality, and fostering racial reconciliation. Politically an African nationalist and democratic socialist, he served as the President of the African National Congress from 1991-1997. Internationally, Mandela was the Secretary General of the Non-Aligned Movement from 1998-1999. Mandela received the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize, the US Presidential Medal of Freedom, and the Soviet Order of Lenin. He is held in deep respect within South Africa, where he is often referred to as “the father of the nation.”

 

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Wilma Mankiller

 Wilma Mankiller’s family was relocated through the Bureau of Indian Affair’s Indian Relocation Act before her birth in 1945. The United States Army usurped the land of 45 Cherokee families, including that of the Mankiller family, during this time. The family settled in Daly City, near San Francisco, California where Mankiller attended San Francisco State University. Mankiller became involved in activism in the 1960s and joined the Occupation of Alcatraz Island in 1969. In the late 1970s she moved back to Oklahoma and began working for the Cherokee Nation. In 1983 she was elected deputy chief and when principal chief Ross Swimmer was promoted, Mankiller took over his position, making her the first female principle chief of the Cherokee Nation. She was elected in her own right in 1987 and again in 1991. The political system during Mankiller’s service was heavily male-dominated, unlike the traditional Cherokee culture which depended upon both sexes in leadership positions. During her terms in office, Mankiller worked hard to strengthen tribal businesses and improved infrastructure, including the construction of a hydroelectric facility. She is also credited with preparing the way for the Government-to-Government relationship between the Cherokee Nation and the U.S. Federal Government. Wilma Mankiller passed away in April 2010. She is remembered as a strong leader for the Cherokee Nation and an inspiration for Native American women in politics.

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Marlee Matlin

Marlee Matlin is a critically acclaimed and Award winning actress and activist. Born in 1965 in Morton Grove, Illinois, Matlin became deaf at 18 months after battling an illness known as Roseola Infantum. She graduate form Harper College and soon after took on several serious acting roles for well known theater companies. Her film debut at 21 years old in "Children of a Lesser God" which earned her an Academy Award for Best Actress in 1986. Matlin appeared in "The West Wing" for seven years and has made countless TV appearances on shows including Law and Order: SVU, Family Guy, CSI, Desperate Housewives, and Nip/Tuck. She was nominated for Emmy Awards for her guest roles in Law and Order, Seinfeld, Picket Fences, and The Practice. In 1994, President Bill Clinton appointed Matlin to the Corporation for National Service and she served as chairperson for National Volunteer Week. Matlin was instrumental in helping to get legislation passed through Congress in support of closed captioning and currently serves as a celebrity spokesperson for the American Red Cross. Marlee has written several children's books about tolerance and published her New York Times Bestselling autobiography, "Scream Later" in 2009. She currently resides in Los Angeles with her husband and four children.

 

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Maggie Maxwell

Maggie was a double major in Women’s Studies and Political Science. She was a Take 5 scholar studying sustainability and co-taught SBAI’s Sisterhood and Feminism course at Sojourner House.  


Maggies says, “I loved being a Gender and Women's Studies Major at UR because the topics were so compelling and important, the professors so passionate about the material they were teaching, the other students inquisitive and engaged, and for the wonderful support of the Susan B. Anthony Institute. I think that I am fortunate, not only to have had such a positive experience as a student, but also to have cultivated a spirit and habit of critical thinking while earning my BA. That is something that will always stay with me. It has served me well in my current position, working at the Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and I am sure that my education and experiences at SBAI will also prove advantageous in my next venture, moving to NYC this fall.”

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Mia McKenzie

Mia McKenzie founded her blog, Black Girl Dangerous (BGD) to help amplify the voices of queer and trans* people of color. BGD is a place to talk about important issues and also reflect the artistic talent of its contributors.  It is an online place to express “our biggest, boldest, craziest, weirdest, wildest selves.” McKenzie’s first novel, The Summer We Got Free, was a finalist for the 2013 Lambda Literary Award and she is the recipient of the Astraea Foundation’s Writers Fund Award in 2009. McKenzie’s work has been published on Jezebel.com and in The Kenyon Review.

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Nicci Meadow

Nicci Meadow graduated in 1985 with degrees in Political Science and Women’s Studies She was an officer in the Women's Caucus and a co-captain of the Women's Tennis Team. She created a credited semester-long internship at the National Women’s Political Caucus in 1984, monitoring their endorsed candidates during the year Geraldine Ferraro was on the ticket as the Vice Presidential Nominee.She wrote for a local newspaper, the New Women's Times.

Nicci says, “I especially enjoyed Feminist Post Modernism, a graduate level class that I took with several graduate students.  I also remember writing a paper on international sex trafficking  and sexual assault/rape war tactics, which I was able to do research on and track using United Nations documents. This was much before the trafficking of women became well known, before a time when laws and funding were allocated to start fighting against it.”  

She went on to complete her dream of becoming a legal services lawyer, graduating from Northeastern University School of Law in 1988.  Nicci practiced anti-poverty law for almost nine years in Central Massachusettes, where she organized a union of legal services lawyers.  Nicci says she “pushes the boundaries of her legal career at all times,” and that she “moved on to become a non-profit manager overseeing WIC, domestic violence and sexual assault services, elderly nutrition, Head Start and Child Care, Immigration and Health Care Access programs.” She served as the Executive Director of the Women's Bar Association and Foundation of Massachusetts for three years. Nicci is currently the Director of Elder Services at Action for Boston Community Development (ABCD) in Boston where she is working on creating and advocating for just public policies, social change and ensuring basic services and resources are available for healthy aging with dignity for low in come older adults.  

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Martha Minow

Martha Minow is the Dean of the Faculty of Law and the Jeremiah Smith, Jr. Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. Minow has written extensively about human rights, with a focus on racial and religious minorities, as well as women, children, and persons with disabilities. She has done work to help stabilize countries in transition, participated in government programs to increase access to curriculum for students with disabilities, and worked on the Divided Cities initiative to build an alliance of global cities in dealing with ethnic, religious, or political divisions. Minow was nominated in 2009 by President Obama to serve on the board of Legal Services Corporation, a government-sponsored organization providing civil legal assistance to low-income Americans.

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Janet Mock

Janet Mock is a New York Times bestselling writer and a transgender rights advocate. After coming out as a trans woman in a 2011 profile in Marie Claire magazine, Mock focused her efforts on speaking about the struggles, triumphs and portrayals of girls and women like herself. In 2012, she launched #GirlsLikeUs, a movement that encourages trans women to live visibly.

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Janelle Monáe

Janelle Monáe is an American R&B and soul musician, composer and record producer. Her song “Q.U.E.E.N” featuring Erykah Badu, is a feminist anthem, and includes the lyrics “She who writes the movie owns the script and the sequel / So why ain’t the stealing of my rights made illegal” among many other powerful lines.

 

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Demi Moore

In 2010, actress Demi Moore and actor Ashton Kutcher founded DNA, the Demi and Ashton Foundation. DNA seeks to end sexual exploitation of children in all forms, through either sex trafficking or child pornography. The “Real Men Don’t Buy Girls” campaign brought mainstream awareness to the issue of sex slavery. The campaign received over 2 million participants. DNA also coordinated with the Department of Homeland Security to create an educational video about identifying trafficking victims and getting help. This video is shown in 46 airports nationwide and receives 20 million viewers per month. The DNA Foundation is working to support stronger legislature, including the Domestic Minor Trafficking Deterrence and Victims Support Act and also has worked with the California’s Peace Officer Standards and Training team to create a law enforcement training video on issues surrounding human trafficking.

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Toni Morrison

Toni Morrison was born Chloe Anthony Wofford, in Loraine, Ohio, and worked as an editor at Random House, a critic, and a public lecturer. She made her debut as a novelist in 1970 with The Bluest Eye, and has written nine novels overall. Her other works include children’s books, plays, short fiction, and non-fiction. She has won many awards, including the American Book Award, the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, the Nobel Prize for Literature, and, of course, the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize for Fiction for Song of Solomon in 1977.

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Carol Elisabeth Moseley Braun

Carol Elizabeth Moseley Braun was born on August 16, 1947 and grew up living in a segregated neighborhood in Chicago’s south side. Moseley Braun graduated the University of Illinois at Chicago in 1969 for her bachelor’s degree and received her law degree in 1972 from the University of Chicago. She remained in Chicago, serving as a prosecutor for the United States Attorney’s office from 1973-1977. During this time she won the Attorney General's Special Achievement Award for her work on housing, health, and environmental issues. Moseley Braun was the first African-American woman elected to the U.S. Senate, representing Illinois from 1993-1999. In February 2003 she announced her intention to win the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination but dropped out of the race in January 2004. Moseley Braun is pro-choice, in favor of increased gun control initiatives, against the death penalty, and was one of 14 senators to vote against the Defense of Marriage Act.

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Mark Anthony Neal

Mark Anthony Neal is Professor of Black Popular Culture in the Department of African and African-American Studies at Duke University, where he won the 2010 Robert B. Cox Award for Teaching. Neal has written and lectured extensively on black popular culture, black masculinity, sexism and homophobia in Black communities, and the history of popular music. Neal is the founder and managing editor of the blog NewBlackMan and hosts the weekly webcast, Left of Black in collaboration with the John Hope Franklin Center at Duke University. A frequent commentator for National Public Radio, Neal contributes to several on-line media outlets, including Huff Post Black Voices and SeeingBlack.com. He has several publications in print, including Rethinking Black Masculinity (2005) and Looking for Leroy: (Il)Legible Black Masculinities (2012).

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Patricia Nobbie

Patricia Nobbie is the deputy director of the Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities. Her council, along with the United States Justice Department, pushed several states, including Georgia, to move developmentally disabiled patients into group homes or other forms of assisted living. The Justice Department has in recent years threatened legal action against states like Georgia who are accused of violating the civil rights of developmentally disabled individuals by placing them in hospitals and nursing homes rather than integrating them into society.

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Indra Nooyi

Indra Nooyi is the CEO of PepsiCo and a strong supporter of woman and minorities in the workplace. In speeches she gives, she emphasizes to the audience how “if you are a woman and especially a person of color, there are two strikes against you.” At the age of 23, Nooyi left India to study at Yale, where she worked as a receptionist from midnight to 5am to help pay her tuition. She worked for Johnson & Johnson and Motorola before joining PepsiCo in 1994. After reaching the top, she is eager to help other women and minorities up the ladder: “There’s a lot society can do. Flextime. Leave policies when women give birth. We need women in the companies, some of the brightest candidates are women. We need to help them balance.” Under her tenure, PepsiCo’s annual revenues have risen 72%, while net profit more than doubled.

 

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Judith Ann Pachciarz

Judith Ann Pachciarz has made influential advancements in the field of medicine and has helped inspire deaf individuals to choose a career in medicine. She was born in 1941 in Danville, Illinois and became deaf as a result of suffering from encephalomeningitis at 2 years old. She attended primary school with hearing students but took lip reading classes to help her achieve success in school. As a young student, she was banned from taking chemistry because the teacher assumed her deafness would cause her to knock over dangerous lab chemicals and tools. Despite the discrimination she encountered, she remained motivated to study medicine after reading about Elizabeth Blackwell and Marie Curie. She obtained BS in Microbiology and Zoology from the University of Illinois. She later went on to receive a Master of Science and a PhD in Microbiology in 1971. In 1979, Pachciarz enrolled University of Louisville School of Medicine. In order to get through medical school, students from the bioengineering department modified an oscilloscope for her so that she could see heart and lung sounds instead of listening for them using a stethoscope. She was chief resident in pathology for 5 years following her graduation in 1983 and completed a residency in transfusion and blood banking. She is currently a practicing pathologist and Professor at Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science in Los Angeles. She advises her students never to assume that a disabled person can't do what anyone else can do.

 

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Ellen Page

Ellen Page is a Canadian actress best known for her roles in films such as Inception and Juno. Page came out as gay in remarks at the Human Rights Campaign's Time to Thrive conference in which she said "I am tired of hiding and I am tired of lying by omission."

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Rosa Parks

Rosa Parks was one of the most well known political and civil right activists. On December 1st, 1955 in Montgomery, Alabama, Parks refused to obey a bus driver’s order that she give up her seat in the colored section of the bus to a white passenger after the white section had filled up. Parks was arrested for violating Alabama’s segregation laws. Parks act of defiance in combination with the Montgomery Bus Boycott became important symbols for the modern Civil Rights Movement. She worked with other prominent civil rights activists including Martin Luther King, Junior and Edgar Nixon. In 1992, Parks published Rosa Parks: My Story, an autobiography aimed at younger readers that recounts her life leading to her decision to keep her seat on the bus. Parks became an international icon of resistance to racial segregation. Parks received national recognition, including the NAACP’s 1979 Spingarn Medal, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and the Congressional Gold Medal. Parks passed away in 2005 at the age of 92, but her legacy and impact on American race relations and equality will undoubtedly be remembered forever.

 

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Ann Patchett

Ann Patchett was born in Los Angeles, but was raised in Nashville, Tennessee. Patchett sold her first story to the Paris Review before she graduated from college. In 1992 she released her first novel, The Patron Saint of Liars, which was named a New York Times Notable Book for the year. Patchett’s second novel, Taft, won the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize for Fiction in 1994. She wrote two more novels after Taft, most notably Bel Canto, which went on to win both the PEN/Faulkner Award and the Orange Prize.

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Alice Paul

Alice Paul was an activist and suffragette. Paul attended Swarthmore College before receiving her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. She learned about the suffragist movement after spending a time in England. In 1909, Paul and a fellow suffragette disguised themselves as cleaning women within the hall in which a banquet was being held for the Prime Minister and most of the cabinet. It was when the Prime Minister stood up in order to deliver his speech that Paul and the other suffragette threw their shoes and broke stain glass windows in order to gain the people’s attention and began to scream “Votes for women!” When she returned to the U.S., she joined the National American Women Suffrage Association (NAWSA), and was appointed Chairwoman of their Congressional Committee. When her methods caused tension between her and NAWSA, she and her colleagues formed the National Women’s Party. In January 1917, the NWP staged the first political protest to picket the White House. The picketers, known as "Silent Sentinels," held banners demanding the right to vote. In July of the same year, Paul and other picketers were arrested for “obstructing traffic,” and incarcerated at the Occoquan Workhouse in Virginia. In a protest of the conditions in Occoquan, Paul commenced a hunger strike, which led to her being moved to the prison’s psychiatric ward and force-fed raw eggs through a feeding tube. Her actions inside of jail as well as out kept pressure on President Wilson, who in 1918 encouraged Congress to pass women’s suffrage—in 1920 they finally did. Paul was also the author of the original Equal Rights Amendment in 1923.

 

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Alice Paul

Alice Paul was an activist and suffragette. Paul attended Swarthmore College before receiving her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. She learned about the suffragist movement after spending a time in England. In 1909, Paul and a fellow suffragette disguised themselves as cleaning women within the hall in which a banquet was being held for the Prime Minister and most of the cabinet. It was when the Prime Minister stood up in order to deliver his speech that Paul and the other suffragette threw their shoes and broke stain glass windows in order to gain the people’s attention and began to scream “Votes for women!” When she returned to the U.S., she joined the National American Women Suffrage Association (NAWSA), and was appointed Chairwoman of their Congressional Committee. When her methods caused tension between her and NAWSA, she and her colleagues formed the National Women’s Party. In January 1917, the NWP staged the first political protest to picket the White House. The picketers, known as "Silent Sentinels," held banners demanding the right to vote. In July of the same year, Paul and other picketers were arrested for “obstructing traffic,” and incarcerated at the Occoquan Workhouse in Virginia. In a protest of the conditions in Occoquan, Paul commenced a hunger strike, which led to her being moved to the prison’s psychiatric ward and force-fed raw eggs through a feeding tube. Her actions inside of jail as well as out kept pressure on President Wilson, who in 1918 encouraged Congress to pass women’s suffrage—in 1920 they finally did. Paul was also the author of the original Equal Rights Amendment in 1923.

 

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Elizabeth Peratrovich

Elizabeth Peratrovich was born on July 4, 1911 and was an Alaska Native civil rights activist of Tlingit descent. In 1931, Peratrovich married her husband Roy, who served four terms as the mayor of Klawock, Alaska. Seeking greater opportunities, Peratrovich and her  family moved to Juneau, AK . In Juneau and all across Alaska the discrimination against Alaska Native people was rampant. Both Elizabeth Peratrovich and her husband were leaders of the Alaska Native Brotherhood and the Alaska Native Sisterhood. Peratrovich and her husband lobbied for the Alaska Native Anti-Discrimination Act when it came up for re-evaluation in 1945 after being defeated in 1943. In 1945 Senator Allen Shattuck’s asked the senate, "who are these people, barely out of savagery, who want to associate with us whites, with 5,000 years of recorded civilization behind us?" Peratrovich famously responded to Shattuck’s question during her testimony stating, “I would not have expected that I, who am barely out of savagery, would have to remind gentlemen with five thousand years of recorded civilization behind them, of our Bill of Rights.” The Bill passed 11 to 5. Pertarovich did not receive recognition of her advocacy during her lifetime; she died in December 1958. Thirty years later the Alaska State Legislature established February 16th, the anniversary of the signing of the Anti-Discrimination Act, as “Elizabeth Peratrovich Day.”

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Rape Crisis Service

Rape Crisis Service of Planned Parenthood of the Rochester/Syracuse Region believes every person should be free from sexual assault and/or sexual harassment. To this end, the program assures personal support and advocacy for survivors and significant others of sexual assault and violence. Rape Crisis Service provides crisis intervention and support services to women, children and men who are survivors of sexual assault and to their families. Trained counselors are available 24-hours a day, seven days a week to provide information and support, enabling the client to make informed choices concerning medical, legal and counseling needs, while offering advocacy and information about their rights. Counselors also offer short-term counseling sessions and legal and medical accompaniment. Services are free and confidential. Their regional Rape Crisis program currently serves five counties: Monroe, Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming. Among the many offerings the service provides are: support through medical exams and treatment, court accompaniment,  advocacy and support during interaction with law enforcement, individual consultations with professionals, community education programs and professional training programs. Staff members and trained volunteer counselors support victims in the areas of medical needs, psychological support, police intervention and legal prosecution. Information provided through prevention education and professional training programs increases awareness and improves societal response to sexual violence in the community and creates a society less vulnerable to sexual violence.

 

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Okolo Rashid

Okolo Rashid (b. 1949) was born to a family of sharecroppers and grew up in the tumult of racial strife in the south. She has been a longtime advocate of social justice, multiculturalism, and anti-racism. After earning degrees in economics and public policy, she has had a varied career life, specializing in community development projects including historic preservation, working primarily with inner city communities and grassroots organizations. She helped found and is executive director of the International Museum of Muslim Cultures in Jackson, Mississippi.

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Charlotte E. Ray

Charlotte E. Ray was the first black female lawyer, admitted to the Washington, D.C., bar in 1872. Ray applied to the bar as C.E. Ray and was admitted because the bar admissions committee assumed she was a man. She also was the first woman permitted to argue cases in front of the Supreme Court in the capital. Ray championed a number of social causes outside of her classroom, becoming involved in the women’s suffrage movement and joining the National Association of Colored Women.

 

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Condolezza Rice

Born in 1954, Condoleezza Rice has already had a long political career. She graduated the University of Denver in 1974 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. Rice taught Political Science at Stanford University from 1981-1987. In 1982 she changed her political affiliation from Democrat to Republican in part because she disagreed with President Jimmy Carter’s foreign policy. Rice served as the Special Assistant to the Director of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in 1986 and from 1989-1991 she served in the National Security Council as Director (and then Senior Director) of Soviet and East European Affairs under President George H.W. Bush. During this time she was also a Special Assistant to the President on National Security Affairs. On January 26, 2005, the United States Senate confirmed her nomination as Secretary of State, making her the first African-American female to hold the position. After the Bush administration, Rice returned to academia and to teaching at Stanford University. 

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KaeLyn Rich

KaeLyn Rich is the Genesee Valley Chapter Director for the New York Civil Liberties Union. She is also a professional speaker and sex educator with Sex Discussed Here. Previously, KaeLyn has served as the Community Affairs Coordinator at Planned Parenthood of Rochester/Syracuse Region (PPRSR), VOX Recruiter for PPRSR, and at SAF House as Resident Assistant/Sexual Assault Advocate. Rich recieved a Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management from SUNY Brockport.

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Adrienne Rich

Adrienne Rich (1929-2012) was an American poet, essayist, and feminist. In her essay, “Compulsory Heterosexuality and Lesbian Existence”, Rich argued that lesbianism was an extension of feminism, and challenged the notion of women’s dependence on men, particularly as economic supports and as well as for sexual expression. She brought attention to heteronormativty and advocated a lesbian existence, a term for the historical and contemporary presence of lesbian creation, and a lesbian continuum to include the entire range of a woman-identified experience. 

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Jonathan Richardson

Jon Richardson is a Religion and Classics and Linguistics double major with a minor in Women's Studies. He most recently served as SBAI's LGBTQI Awareness Month Coordinating Intern (the first ever intern at SBAI!).He is a resident advisor/community advisor to undergraduates at the University of Rochester and Internshi Assitant at the Gwen M. Greene Career and Internship Center. Jon has exerience interning at non-profits doing such work as grant writing, community outreach, and communications and marketing. He recently was awarded a Univeristy of Rochester Student Life award. You can learn more about him at his LinkedIn account.

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Felisa Rincón de Gautier

Rincón de Gautier was a woman of many trades. After high school, she became a pharmacist and before moving to New York City to study fashion design. Upon returning to her native Puerto Rico, she opened a flower shop. Rincón de Gautier was always a strong supporter of women’s right to vote and was active in the suffragist movement. She was involved with the Liberal Party of Puerto Rico, and left the party in 1938 to assist in the organization of the Popular Democratic Party of Puerto Rico. In 1946 Rincón de Gautier was elected mayor of San Juan, making her the first woman to serve as the mayor of a capital city in the Americas. She pioneered the implementation of preschool programs, which became the inspiration of the Head Start program in the U.S. Rincón de Gautier also made great strides in revamping San Juan’s public health system and established its School of Medicine. After her 22 year term as San Juan’s mayor, she served as the American Goodwill Ambassador  under four U.S. Presidents.

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Sylvia Rae Rivera

Sylvia Rae Rivera (1951-2002) was a transgender activist involved in Vietnam War protests, the Civil Rights and Feminist movements, and the Gay Rights Movement. She is particularly well known for her involvement in the Stonewall Riots. Rivera was a founding member of the Gay Liberation Front, as well as Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR), which she co-founded with her mentor, Marsha P. Johnson. Rivera reinstated STAR as an active political organization in 2001, fighting for the New York City Transgender Rights Bill and for a trans-inclusive New York State Sexual Orientation Non-Discrimination Act. STAR also sponsored street pressures for justice when Amanda Milan, a transgender woman, was murdered in 2000.

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Jane Roberts

In 2002, the United States government (under the Bush Administration) withdrew $34 million in funding from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) This meant that the UNFPA would have $34 million less to provide family planning services worldwide. Lois Abraham and Jane Roberts were livid with the United States’ decision and began independent email campaigns encouraging Americans to donate to UNFPA. Abraham and Roberts joined efforts to form 34 Million Friends of UNFPA with the goal of finding 34 million people to donate $1 or more to make up for the missing monetary  contribution from the United States. Besides raising more than $4 million for UNFPA, 34 Million Friends has spread awareness about the goals of UNFPA and health care for women all around the world. Roberts was the keynote speaker for the 2012 Susan B. Anthony Institute Undergraduate Conference in Gender and Women's Studies at the University of Rochester.

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Eleanor Roosevelt

Eleanor Roosevelt was the First Lady of the United States from 1933 to 1945. Roosevelt fought for human rights in many ways and through many capacities, serving as the Chairperson of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights (1946-1951), the United States Delegate to the United Nations General Assembly (1946-1952), and the Chairperson of the Presidential Commission on the Status of Women (1961-1962). She was an ardent supporter of the Civil Rights Movement and a co-founder of Freedom House. Harry Truman called her the “First Lady of the World” due to her achievements for human rights.

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Safe Journey

Safe Journey has served over 2,000 women since its inception in 1998. This non-profit, non-residential facility helps women who have experienced domestic violence and abuse to rebuild their lives. Located in Fairport, New York, Safe Journey offers a number of services to survivors of domestic violence including safety planning, individual counseling, community resource coordination, resettlement support and life skills training. The center also provides teen violence prevention and education services. The mission of Safe Journey is not only to help women survive, but to thrive and move forward in creating a life that is stable and peaceful. Safe Journey staff members travel to various community organizations and youth groups, educating individuals on domestic violence prevention. The organization also provides resources for those trying to help a victim.

 

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Margaret Sanger

In 1916, when contraception was illegal in the United States, Margaret Sanger opened the first birth control clinic. She was arrested for passing out information on contraceptives, yet to the authorities’ chagrin her court case brought attention and support to Sanger’s cause. Sanger formed the American Birth Control League in 1921, which would eventually become the Planned Parenthood Federation of America. She wanted to eliminate unsafe back-alley abortions and allow women to have more control over and more opportunities in their life. Sanger continued to advocate for birth control and formed the National Committee on Federal Legislation for Birth Control in 1929 to aid in lobbying. Sanger is credited with founding the birth control movement.

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Aung San Suu Kyi

Aung San Suu Kyi is a pro-democracy activist and leader of the National League for Democracy in Burma (now Myanmar) who has spent 15 of the past 21 years under house arrest for undermining the Burmese government and promoting human rights and democracy. In their 1990 general election, her party won 59% of the national votes and 81% of the seats in parliament but she was unable to serve due to her imprisonment. Throughout her life she has opposed the use of any violence in her aim to establish a society which allowed the country’s ethnic groups to cooperate peacefully. She was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991 for her work.

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Kaci Smith

Kaci Smith is the Director of Girls Rock! Rochester, an organization dedicated to empowering girls through music creation and performance. Smith manages the day to day activities of organization, drafts press releases and speaks to press and media about organization and upcoming events. She also approves all documentation and curriculum, coordinates with workshop leaders regarding their plan and approves their workshop. Smith is an Art Teacher, and in the past has taught Photography and been a Drum Instructor/Band Coach. She graduated from Alfred University with a BFA, and received a MA from Nazareth College for Teaching English as a Second Language/ESL Language Instructor.

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Holly Smith

At fourteen years old, Holly Smith fell victim to a sex trafficking ring. Due to the lack of anti-trafficking laws at the time, Smith’s captor served only one year in jail. Smith now advocates against human trafficking by telling her story to raise awareness about domestic human trafficking.  In September 2011, Smith testified to Congress in support of the Trafficked Victims Protection Act. Smith works to educate law enforcement on human trafficking and serves as a consultant to the AMBER Alert system in the United States. Smith is currently writing a memoir about her experience.

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Sonya Sotomayor

Sonya Sotomayor became the first Hispanic U.S. Supreme Court Justice in August 2009. She has been described as both outspoken and "quite brash" on the bench. In regard to diversity and life experiences among judges, she has commented that “I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experience would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn't lived that life."

 

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Sonia Sotomayor

Justice Sotomayor studied at Princeton University as an undergraduate and went on to obtain her law degree from Yale Law School. She was a New York County District Attorney’s Office prosecutor and worked in private practice before she was nominated to serve as a federal judge by George H. W. Bush in 1991. She was then nominated by William J. Clinton in 1997 to the U.S. Court of Appeals. In May 2009, President Barack Obama nominated Justice Sotomayor to the United States Supreme Court to fill Justice David Souter’s seat. She was confirmed in August 2009.  Justice Sotomayor is the third woman to serve on the Supreme Court and the first Hispanic Justice.

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Stand Up Guys

Stand Up Guys is a local non-profit, founded in 2005, which seeks to educate men about the issue of gender-based violence. They work to educate men about violence against women and children while promoting community safety, justice, and equality. They hold events at schools and organizations throughout the community in order to spread their mission and share prevention techniques and information. Stand Up Guys recognizes that the majority of perpetrators of domestic violence and sexual abuse are men, and that only women tend to work towards ending domestic violence. Stand Up Guys believes in men standing up and speaking out about domestic violence as, not a women’s issue, but a community issue. They aim to engage well intended, non-abusing men in the dialogue which will help to end the vicious cycle of domestic violence and sexual abuse.

 

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Elizabeth Cady Stanton

Elizabeth Cady Stanton was a social activist, abolitionist, and a leader in the Women’s Rights movement. She was the principal author of the Declaration of Sentiments presented at the 1848 Seneca Falls Convention. Though she eventually dedicated herself almost exclusively to the cause of women’s suffrage, she had been involved in a number of social justice causes. Stanton was formally educated at Johnstown Academy, where she was also in some co-educational classes, and upon graduation went on to Troy Female Seminary in Troy, NY. She married Henry Brewster Stanton, a fellow activist she had met through her involvement in the Temperance and Abolition movements, though she asked the minister to remove the phrase “promise to obey” from her wedding vows, saying “I obstinately refused to obey one with whom I supposed I was entering into an equal relation.” Stanton firmly believed that women should have command over their sexual relationships and childbearing. Stanton was a prolific author and activist until her death in 1902.

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Elizabeth Cady Stanton

Elizabeth Cady Stanton was a social activist, abolitionist, and a leader in the Women’s Rights movement. She was the principal author of the Declaration of Sentiments presented at the 1848 Seneca Falls Convention. Though she eventually dedicated herself almost exclusively to the cause of women’s suffrage, she had been involved in a number of social justice causes. Stanton was formally educated at Johnstown Academy, where she was also in some co-educational classes, and upon graduation went on to Troy Female Seminary in Troy, NY. She married Henry Brewster Stanton, a fellow activist she had met through her involvement in the Temperance and Abolition movements, though she asked the minister to remove the phrase “promise to obey” from her wedding vows, saying “I obstinately refused to obey one with whom I supposed I was entering into an equal relation.” Stanton firmly believed that women should have command over their sexual relationships and childbearing. Stanton was a prolific author and activist until her death in 1902.

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Louise Stokes

Louise Stokes was a renowned champion athlete in Track and Field. At the 1932 Olympic Trials in Evanston, Illinois, Louise’s third place finish in the 100 meter dash one her a spot on the women’s 400-meter relay team for the Los Angeles Olympic Games along with Tidye Pickett. Both Stokes and Pickett served as the first two African American women to qualify for an Olympic team. However, Coach George Vreeland selected only white women for the final relay team. Four years later, she competed at the U.S. trials for the 1936 Olympics in Berlin. Although she again qualified for the Olympic relay team, she received the same treatment and was replaced by a white runner. She planned to try out for the 1940 games, but World War II precipitated the cancellation of the games. Following her retirement from running, she became a professional bowler. She founded the Colored Women’s Bowling League in 1941, and was a preeminent bowler for the next 30 years.

 

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Julie Stoltman

Julie graduate from the University of Rochester as a double major in Women’s Studies and Political Science in 2006.

Julie says, “I absolutely loved my time at UR and met so many great people through my involvement with the Susan B. Anthony Institute. My women’s studies degree, as well as my time spent in London while studying abroad junior year, made me want to pursue graduate studies in the UK. After graduation in 2006, I moved to England and earned an MSc in Gender, Development and Globalisation from the London School of Economics in 2007. I then spent a year working as a parliamentary researcher and constituency caseworker for a Member of Parliament in the House of Commons. My background in gender, women’s studies and politics then enabled me to transition from working in Parliament to working for a central government department, as a Policy Advisor for the newly created Government Equalities Office in the UK. In my time at the GEO, I worked on issues related to women’s appointment to company boards of directors, equality legislation and government policies related to maternity and paternity leave. After that, I spent a year working for a local government authority in London as a Senior Policy Officer before moving back to the US in September 2011. Currently, I’m working at a behavioral health agency as in Seattle, WA and volunteering with Planned Parenthood while I contemplate my next career move!”

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Elizabeth Stroud

 Many historians regard Lizzie Arlington, known formally as Elizabeth Stroud, as the first female to play organized baseball in the 19th century. She was accustomed to playing baseball with her father and brothers in the Pennsylvania Coal Region, where she was born and raised. After watching her play, a prominent promoter engaged Arlington for $100 a week in hopes of making money on her as a gate attraction. She surprised the crowd when she debuted in 1898 while pitching for the reserve team of the Philadelphia Nationals. She frequently entered the grounds in a stylish horse drawn carriage with her hair done in the latest fashion. Arlington was known to play second base like a professional, but she faced immense difficulty in rising in the ranks. Many reporters claimed, “for a woman, she is a success.” Apart from Arlington and several other female players, women’s baseball in the 19th century caricatured the game. But she was part of a segment, however small, of the women’s movement in baseball that contributed to weakening prejudice against women in professional sports.

 

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Bibiana Ferraiuoli Suarez

In October of this year, in Puerto Rico, Betsian Carrasquillo-Peñaloza was indicted for having recruited, enticed, and transported a 14-year-old to engage in commercial sex acts knowing that the individual was a minor. It may be just one case, but it serves as a beacon of hope that many more cases may be presented and end in a similar fashion. And in an issue like sex trafficking, where perpetrators rarely face consequences from the legal system, it’s certainly cause to celebrate

Pictured is Bibiana Ferraiuoli Suarez, Executive Director of the Ricky Martin Foundation. The Ricky Martin Foundation advocates for the well being of children around the world in critical areas such as education, health, and social justice. Its principal program, People for Children, condems child exploitation and human trafficking. Ferraiuoli reported the indictment on Huffington Post last month.

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Johanna Mansfield Sullivan

Johanna Mansfield Sullivan (1866 – 1936), commonly referred to as Annie Sullivan, grew up nearly blind due to untreated infections, and was without access to an education. While in an orphanage in Tewksbury, Massachusetts, Sullivan advocated for her education and was rewarded; at 14 she began at the Perkins School for the Blind in Boston.  After graduating at the top of the class and undergoing several successful operations to restore her eyesight, Sullivan began teaching, and instructed the now famous Helen Keller. Sullivan and Keller’s teacher-student relationship blossomed into friendship and the two became advocates for the American Foundation for the Blind; both received honorary degrees from Temple University.

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Mother Theresa

Mother Theresa was a Roman Catholic nun of Albanian ethnicity and Indian citizenship. She founded the Missionaries of Charity, and worked for over 45 years  creating hospices and homes for people with HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and leprosy. She also established soup kitchens, children’s and family counseling programs, orphanages, and schools. Among the numerous awards and recognitions that Mother Theresa received are the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979 and Bharat Ratna, the Republic of India’s highest civilian award.

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Madonna Thunder Hawk

Growing up in the in the 1940s and 1950s, a time plagued by alcohol abuse, poverty, and restrictions on Native American expression,  made an impression on Madonna Thunder Hawk.  She has been involved with activism of all kinds since the 1960s including Native American cultural preservation and environmental justice. Thunder Hawk was an original member of the American Indian Movement and is the co-founder of Women of All Red Nations, which has brought attention to a number of causes including forced sterilization of Native American women in the 1970s and the effects of pollution in the Pine Ridge Reservation on women’s reproductive health. 

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Tootsie (1982)

Tootsie is a comedy that follows Dorsey (Hoffman) through his acting career as he adopts a new identity as a woman to land a job. The film forces a man to experience the acting world as a woman, and for Hoffman, the role was eye-opening. Hoffman spoke during an interview on Good Morning America last summer about the nature of this role. He stated “that movie was never a comedy for me", after he made the realization that many women are treated based on their looks. "There's too many interesting women I have not had the experience to know in this life because I have been brainwashed." Hoffman shed tears sharing these thoughts with his interviewer, watch the interview here.

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Harriet Tubman

Harriet Tubman was born Araminta “Minty” Ross to slave parents in approximately 1822 in Maryland. Tubman escaped from slavery in 1849, making use of the Underground Railroad, eventually reaching Philadelphia. However, she immediately returned to Maryland for her family, and eventually guided dozens of slaves to freedom. She was known as “Moses” and “never lost a passenger”. Tubman later helped plan and recruit help for John Brown’s raid at Harper Ferry. She served in the Civil War as a nurse, scout, and even led an armed assault in support of the Union. In her later years, Tubman worked to promote suffrage for women. She died of pneumonia in 1913.

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Urvashi Vaid

Urvashi Vaid is a community organizer, writer, and attorney, who has been a leader in the LGBT social justice movement for nearly three decades. Vaid is the Director of the Engaging Tradition Project at the Center for Gender and Sexuality Law at Columbia Law School. She also serves on the Board of Directors for the Gill Foundation, which works to achieve equal opportunity for all, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. For more than 10 years Vaid has worked in various capacities at the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, and has also worked as staff attorney at the National Prison Project of the American Civil Liberties Union, where she initiated the organization’s work on HIV/AIDS in prisons. In 2009, She was named by Out magazine as one of the 50 most influential people in America.

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Vanessa Valenti

In 2004, sisters Vanessa Valenti and Jessica Valenti founded Feministing.com. The website is viewed as a pioneer in engaging feminist dialogue online and is one of the largest online feminist communities. Vanessa is now the Managing Editor of the website. She is involved with several feminist organizations including Girls for Gender Equity and Planned Parenthood. She is a winner of the Hillman Prize. Gloria Steinem describes Valenti as "one of the young women who inspire her and will ensure that the feminist movement continues." She is also co-founder and partner at Valenti Martin Media, which is a consultant agency for online communication as a means of social change.

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Sina Vann

At the age of 13, Sina Vann was sold into sex slavery by her friend. After two years of captivity, Vann was rescued during an anti-slavery raid organized by activist Somaly Mam. Vann now works with the Somaly Mam Foundation to free other sex slaves through the “Voices for Change” program and in 2009 she was awarded the Frederick Douglas Award from international anti-slavery organization Free the Slaves for her activism and advocacy efforts. Vann is continuing her education and is seen as one of the foremost activists in Cambodia advocating against sex slavery.

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Wolma Vaught

Wolma Vaught was the first woman to deploy with an Air Force bomber unit, and the first woman to reach the rank of Brigadier Genderal from the comptroller field. Vaught graduated from the UICU College of Business in 1952 and received her M.B.A. from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa in 1968. In August 1972, she became the first female Air Force officer to attend the Industrial College of the Armed Forces at Fort Lesley J. McNair. Vaught joined the military in the 1950s, when there were strong restrictions on the number of women who could be in the military and the capacity in which they could serve. Some of these policies changed in 1967 due to an increased need for human resources caused by the Vietnam War. Vaught then became an officer and was deployed to Vietnam. Vaught served as the senior military representative to the Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Services and was chairperson of the Committee of Women in the NATO Armed Forces. She also served as president of the board of directors of the Pentagon Federal Credit Union. She was the only woman in history to hold this position. Concerned that the role of women in the military was going unnoticed, Vaught pushed for a memorial as the leader of the Women in Miliatary Service to America Memorial Foundation. The result was the Woman in Military Service for America Memorial beign built at the entrance to Arlingotn National Cemetary. In 2000, she was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame, and in 2010, she was inducted into the Army Women’s Foundation hall of fame.

 

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Sarah Weddington

Sarah Weddington is an American attorney, law professor, and former Texas state legislator best known for representing "Jane Roe" in the landmark Roe v. Wade case before the United States Supreme Court. At the age of 27, Weddington remains the youngest person to argue a successful Supreme Court case. In 1992, Weddington compiled her experiences with the case and interviews with the people involved into a book titled A Question of Choice.

 

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Hilary Wermers

Hilary Wermers is graduating with double majors in English and Women's Studies. She serves as the Schimmel Writing Fellows President in the University of Rochester Writing Program and as an employee at the Susan B. Anthony Center for Women's Leadership. In 2011 she recieved the Jane Plitt Award from the Suasn B. Anthony Center for Women's Leadership. She served as director of The Vagina Monologues for Women's Caucus. During the Spring 2013 semester she served as an intern in Congresswoman Louise Slaughter's Rochester Office. Learn more about her at LinkedIn!

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Jennifer White

After learning about two men charged with child sex trafficking in her town of Wichita, Kansas, Jennifer White began working with the Wichita Children’s Home and started the grassroots movement ICT S.O.S.  The organization, founded in 2011, coordinates with state legislators to make changes to human trafficking laws and provides emergency shelter services and long-term housing and rehabilitation. Where other efforts have failed, volunteers for ICT SOS have found success in writing letters to child pornography websites demanding they remove the pictures. ICT SOS is working to educate the public about human trafficking and White encourages others to be the catalyst for change in their community.

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Elizabeth Wilkinson

Elizabeth Wilkinson joined the sport of bare-knuckled boxing soon after it became popular in the early 1700s. First appearing in 1722, she squared off with an opponent by the name of Hannah Hyfield and the agreement was that the women would hold half a crown in each fist and the first one to drop one of her coins lost. This rule stopped scratches and gouges, which were common in boxing events at the time and particularly exciting to the crowds when women fought because they went bare to the waist just like men. Wilkinson was often referred to as “The Invincible City Championess.” She continued to fight for the next six years in venues owned by one of the most successful male boxers, Jim Figg. It wasn’t until the Victorian era that women, after thousands of years of fighting competitively in public, were shut out of bare-knuckle boxing.

 

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Kirsten Williamson

Kirsten is a double major in studio art  and film and media studies with a minor in women's studies. She served as an SBAI student office assistant from 2010-2012. She also served as the Editor-in-Cheif for LOGOS, the University of Rochester's undergraduate art and literature journal, from 2012-2013. Kirsten served in serveral capacities on the board of the Undergraduate Council for Art and Art History and has worked at several places on campus, including Sage Art Center You can learn more about her at her LinkedIn and you can view some of her performance art here.

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Liza Yaroshenko

Ukrainian 15-year-old Liza Yaroshenko is one of the youngest campaigners for tolerance and understanding of HIV, as well as affordable treatment options. Liza was six when she lost her mother to AIDS, and carries the HIV virus. She speaks out on healthcare laws that hurt those affected by HIV and AIDS, as well as generalHIV awareness. "I hate it when people spread false information,” she told BBC. “I can't keep quiet.”

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Yentl (1983)

The film adaptation of Isaac Bashevis Singer’s story Yentl is a favorite of ours. Yentl was the first film to have an American woman serve as writer, director, producer, and star. The story is based on a lack of educational opportunity for women and follows Yentl, a young woman who wishes to study religious scripture, through a trying journey. When denied education, Yentl chooses to relocate and passing as male to attain this education. We thought that Helene Meyer’s “Yentl, Me and 1983” was an interesting discussion of the role of Yentl in her development as a Jewish feminist.

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Jinan Younis

Jinan Younis, 18, is a theology student at the University of Cambridge. Younis's views sharpened a few years ago as a result of street harassment. She was on a trip to Cambridge with friends when some men shouted at them from a car. When Younis shouted back, they doused her with cold coffee, which left her feeling humiliated and infuriated.

She took action by setting up a feminist society at school, and when some boys in her peer group abused members, she wrote a Guardian article that went viral. Last October, she started at Jesus College, Cambridge, studying theology, and promptly joined the student union women's campaign and set up her own feminist group at college. Since then, she has written for the Guardian about rape culture at university, which led to a sexual consent workshop being held at Cambridge.

She attended a Reclaim The Night march in February this year. "I can't describe how amazing it was," Younis says. "After the event, people were writing about how they had been sexually assaulted when they were younger, and hadn't  told anyone, because they never felt they had this space of security, love and solidarity before."

She is hoping for a career working with refugee women, survivors of rape and domestic violence, and women in poverty. "Those are the day-to-day experiences of so many women in this country, yet we don't even hear about them," she says.

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Malala Yousafzai

A very well known young activist, Yousafzai is an advocate for education and women’s rights. Hailing from the Swat Valley of Pakistan, the 16-year-old has been speaking out on education rights since she was 11. Her father, a school owner and educational activist, encouraged Yousafzai's fight against the Taliban, which banned many girls from attending school. In 2012, she was the target of an assassination plot by Taliban leaders. A bullet entering her head, went through her neck and ended in her shoulder. She miraculously survived and is still speaking out, addressing the United Nations in July of 2013 and meeting with world leaders such as Queen Elizabeth II and President Barack Obama.

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Malala Yousafzai

Malala Yousafzai is a student and education activist from the northwestern province of Pakistan. In 2009 at the age of 12, she wrote a blog for the BBC under a pseudonym about the oppressive Taliban forces and her views about girls’ education. In 2012, a Taliban gunman shot Yousafzai in the head on the way home from school in an assassination attempt. Following her incredible recovery, Malala continued to advocate for girls’ rights to an equal education. Malala has received an outpour of support on a global scale and has been featured in magazines, delivered countless speeches and presentations, and received numerous awards throughout the past several years. Most remarkably, she was nominated for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize and spoke at the UN to call for worldwide access to education.  In October 2013, Malala’s memoir I am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban was published.

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Kortney Ryan Ziegler

Dr. Kortney Ryan Ziegler originally created blac(k)ademic in graduate school as a place to engage in conversations about black queer visibility outside of the classroom. In December 2006 the site became inactive even after winning Best Topical Blog in the Annual Black Weblog awards, and receiving notoriety on several top ten feminist blog listings. Having finished graduate school, the website now features Ziegler’s critical essays and is focused on intellectual inquiry. The website has been nominated for Outstanding Blog in the 2013 GLAAD Media awards and for Best Blog in Transguys Community Awards in 2012. 

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