Female Trailblazers Throughout History.

Stories of women who fought for change by striking out on their own paths.
By Rachel “Sink” Lindsay

MADAM C.J. WALKER .

First Black female self-made millionaire in America.
Walker made her fortune by creating a homemade line of hair care products for black women. As her wealth increased, so did her philanthropic and political outreach. Walker supported and contributed financially to various organizations throughout her life, including the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the National Association of Colored Women’s Clubs.

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Source: Scurlock Studio (Washington, D.C.)
Source: mubi

ANNA MAY WONG.

First Chinese American film star in Hollywood.
Wong‘s contributions were recognized in 1960 when she became the first Asian-American actress to receive a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame. Throughout her career, Wong stood for the women who were denied an opportunity to practice their craft in an industry that could not see their value.

RITA MORENO.

First Latina to Win an Oscar for a Lead Role.
Moreno is the only Latina actress to have reached EGOT status, winning an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony. She has often spoken out about the racist and sexist treatment she faced as a rising Hollywood star. The actress will always be a legend to look up to for Latinas, proving that representation matters.

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Source: virtual-history.com
Source: Wikimedia Commons

ELIZABETH TAYLOR.

First Woman to be paid $1 Million for an Acting Role.
Taylor was not only an outstanding actress but she was also known for her shrewd business ethics. The star negotiated a record-setting salary of $1 million to portray the title role for the blockbuster film Cleopatra. Since then, women in film continue to push for better pay.

SALLY RIDE.

First American woman to fly in space.
Ride, who made two trips to space, eventually became a key figure in efforts to improve how science is taught. Throughout her life, Ride broke barriers and worked to ensure that girls and women were encouraged to do the same.

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Source: NASA/Interim Archives/Getty Images

MALALA YOUSAFZAI.

Youngest Nobel laureate and Taliban assassination survivor.
A Pakistani activist, Yousafzai survived an assassination attack by the Taliban and became an internationally famous human rights and education advocate, particularly for women. She graduated from Oxford University in 2018 and continues to speak on women’s rights.

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