10 Influential Women in History

Amanda Swank, Author

Eric Connolly; U.S. House Office of Photography
March is Women’s History month, so let’s take a look at some women who have changed the world!

1.) Madam C. J. Walker (1867-1919)

Walker, born Sarah Breedlove, created specialized hair products for African-Americans and was one of the first African-American woman to become a self-made millionaire.

2.) Frida Kahlo (1907-1954)

Considered one of Mexico’s greatest artists, Kahlo was a self-portrait artist who is widely considered a prominent feminist icon.

3.) Marie Curie (1867-1939)

Curie was a Polish scientist credited with the discovery of Radium and Polonium, and was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize in both Chemistry and Physics. She was also the first person to win 2 Nobel Honors.

4.) Sappho (630 BC- 580 BC)

Sappho was an archaic Greek poet from the island of Lesbos, and though most of her work has been lost, she still occupies a prestigious position in the West for her lyric poetry.

5.) Maya Angelou (1928-2014)

Angelou was an American author, actress, screenwriter, dancer, poet and civil rights activist best known for her 1969 memoir, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.

6.) Sojourner Truth (1797-1883)

Sojourner Truth was an African-American civil rights activist, as well as a female rights activist who is best known for her famous speech, “Ain’t I a Woman?” in 1851 at the Ohio Women’s Rights Convention.

7.) Oprah Winfrey (1954-present)

Oprah is a self-made billionaire, Talk show host, and philanthropist who is best known for her TV program, The Oprah Winfrey Show which aired for 25 seasons from 1986 to 2011. She has also delivered a fantastic speech at the 2018 Golden Globes focusing on the #MeToo movement and female empowerment.

8.) Billie Holiday (1915-1959)

Holiday is considered one of the most influential jazz vocalists of all time, and nicknamed “Lady Day”. She was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame  in 2000.

9.) Malala Yousafzai (1997-present)

Malala is a Pakistani activist for female education, and is also the worlds youngest Nobel Peace Prize winner, which she won at age 17. She was also shot in the head by the Taliban, but survived and continued to fight for female empowerment and education.

10.) Stephanie Murphy (1978- present)

Murphy is the first Vietnamese-American woman elected to Congress. She is also a business consultant and professor from the state of Florida.