Strong Women of Africa

Strong Women of Africa was first blogged on November 25, 2020 as part of The Strong Women Series. The first of the Series highlighted my favorite Strong Women of The Bible. In honor of International Women’s Day, and celebrating all women globally during the month of March being Women’s Month, I will re-blog the Series throughout the remainder of March. Read along, even if you read the initial post of each section of the Series, as changes may have been made.

Credy: azquotes

We congratulate Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala (NOI), the newly-appointed General of World Trade Organization. Madam NOI was actually included in the initial blog though in an acting capacity.

As you may, or may not, know, Africa is a continent comprising of fifty-five 55) countries spread across its northern, southern, central, eastern, and western regions; each having seven (7), five (5), seven (7), twenty (20), and seventeen (16) countries respectively. Nigeria is the most populous African country with 206 million. For countries that make up each region, please click here.

This information is necessary to help visualize the magnitude of people that we are attempting to highlight. It is impossible to include every strong woman of the continent. As previously stated, in our initial blog of the Series, several strong women are unknown. Most are heads of their households. Those who are married are overworked and inadequately compensated or not compensated at all. Those in the workforce are still grossly underpaid compared to their male counterparts working the same job.

In my research, I found a UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) interactive map of Women in African History. I love the interactives; I hope you do too. Unfortunately, this interactive lists only 32 women; one woman per country highlighted. There were 23 countries that did not have any woman highlighted. Click on the link above for the interactive map and on the picture to view details of the woman.

We know that there are tons of Strong Women of Africa than the referenced interactive showcased. But I would rather not burden you with the encyclopedic information of these Strong Women. As you read, if you know or have heard of any Strong Woman, kindly include her in the comment.

The above highlights Historic Strong Women of Africa. This link, courtesy of Forbes, showcases modern notable Strong Women of Africa. Again, the list might not be exhaustive. Include other known names you’ve either read about, heard, or known in the comments.

Credits: azquotes

African Women, like their global counterparts have defied several odds to attain their current pinnacles. From the first African female Head of State, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia (there has since been other African female Heads of States), to Asnath Mahapa, the first African woman to become a pilot in South Africa, to Wangari Maathai, the first African woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize, to Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, the first African woman to head the World Trade Organization (WTO), African Women continue to graciously stamp their footprints on the sands of time. Yet, there are still more Strong African Women needed to rise up and/or pass the baton on. I salute your courage and thank you for paving the way.

Happy International Women’s Day.

Strong Women of Australia / Oceania: Australia – A Curation

Introduction

There are only 14 countries in the Australia/Oceania. Australia, which is the only continent that is also a country, has three countries; namely, Australia, Papua New Guinea, and part of Indonesia.

Australia also has more female government leaders than any of the Continents that I have curated so far.

. . .

Historic Strong Women

  1. Wilhelmina (Mina) Wylie (1891-1984)
  2. Sarah (Fanny) Durack (1889-1956)

“These two Australian friends rewrote history for female swimmers in New South Wales, Australia. When they began, females were banned from any competition where males were competing, meaning all major sporting events were out of bounds.” Their collective skills became so profound that the public kicked back against these regulations, pushing them to be part of the 1912 Olympic Games in Stockholm.

  1. Edith Cowan (1861-1932). The first woman to be elected to parliament in Australia, co-founded the Karrakatta Club, which lobbied for the right for women to vote, and also co-founded Western Australia’s National Council of Women. The continent’s $50 note displays her face.
  2. Evelyn Scott (1935-2017). An activist, Evelyn Scott, was a key game changer for indigenous rights throughout her life. She played a crucial role campaigning during the 1967 Constitutional Referendum for the inclusion of indigenous people in the national census.
  3. Maude Bonney (1897-1994). Bonney holds the record as the first female aviator to circumnavigate Australia, the first woman to fly from Australia to England, and also the first woman to fly from Australia to South Africa.
  4. Jane Foss Barff (1863-1937). An educationist, a leader and fighter for a woman’s right to an education in Australia. Was notably a founding member of the Sydney University Women’s Society which promoted higher education of women, as well as the first woman to achieve a Master of Arts in Sydney.
  5. Faith Thomas. Has a few firsts – she was the first indigenous woman to play international cricket professionally in Australia, the first woman to be selected for any professional sport on the continent, one of the first aboriginal nurses to graduate from the Royal Adelaide Hospital, and the first to run a hospital.
  6. Louise Mack (1870-1935). Louise Mack was the first female war correspondent, reporting for the Evening News and London’s Daily Mail from the front lines during World War I.
  1. Pearl (Gambanyi) Gibbs (1901-1983) was an Aboriginal rights activist, largely involved in the Australian Aborigines’ League in the 1930s. Her face adorns the continent’s old $5 bill.
  1. Dr Evelyn Scott. Previously honored on the continent’s $10, Dr. Scott was the first general secretary of the Indigenous-controlled Federal Council for the Advancement for Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders (FCAATSI), an organisation pushing for Indigenous self-determination.
  1. Dame Mary Gilmore (1865–1962) was a poet, as well as an author, journalist and keen campaigner against inequality and deprivation. Her face adorns the continent’s $10 bill.
  1. Emily Kame Kngwarreye (1910-1996) is one of Australia’s most prominent and successful contemporary artists, whose work redefined Indigenous Art. Emily was the first Aboriginal artist to exceed a public sale of more than one million dollars. Her face previously adorned Australia’s $20 bill.
  1. Mary Reibey (1777–1855) actually arrived in Australia in 1792 as a convict, but this tenacious achiever then went on to become a successful shipping magnate and philanthropist. The Australian $20 note contains her image.
  1. Cathy Freeman. one of Australia’s most famous athletes, a beacon of Indigenous excellence and championed equal access and opportunities, anti-racism and simply, defiantly celebrated Black Australia. She is the founder of the Cathy Freeman Foundation, an organisation aiming to close the education gap and help Indigenous children succeed in school. Her face previously graced the continent’s $50.
  1. Dr Lowitja O’Donoghue. The first Aboriginal woman to be awarded an Order of Australia (OA) and the first-ever Aboriginal trainee nurse in South Australia. She made a name for herself for her outstanding contribution and involvement to health, community development, social justice and the Aboriginal Legal Rights Movement. Her face previously adorned the continent’s $100 bill.
  1. Dame Nellie Melba. The new $100 note features the legendary soprano.
  1. Nova Peris. The first Aboriginal Australian to win an Olympic gold medal for the women’s hockey team in 1996. the first indigenous woman to be elected into parliament in 2012, advocating for egalitarianism and the end of racism in Australia and around the world.
  2. Ita Buttrose. Ira has authored 9 books, appeared on the panel of numerous TV talk shows, was given the honourable title of an Officer of the Order of Australia, and also recognized for Outstanding Lifetime Achievement at the Kennedy Awards for Excellence in Journalism
  3. Poh Ling Yeow, one of Australia’s most-loved TV personalities with her own series, Poh’s Kitchen and Poh& Co, has authored 5 books. Poh is also an accomplished painter, making her a true inspiration for women with multiple passions in life.
  4. Julie Bishop was once Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs and deputy leader of the Liberal. A champion for important causes, including public health, education, advancements in science and technology.
  5. Lisa Wilkinson, the youngest ever Australian magazine editor at the age of 21, was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in 2016, to honor her remarkable contribution to media, as well as to youth and women’s health issues.

. . .

Australia’s Strong Women can be found in all spheres of life. But as I’ve always stated, it’s impossible to include every notable lady/woman. The goal of the Series is to highlight a sample of contributors in each continent.

I hope that I have achieved this goal. Feel free to comment. Thanks a lot for reading.

References

11 Inspiring Australian Women Who Changed History

https://www.newidea.com.au/international-womens-day-20-inspiring-australian-women

https://www.tourstogo.com.au/things-to-do/australian-currency/?amp

https://www.sbs.com.au/nitv/article/2018/06/18/notable-women-aboriginal-and-torres-strait-islander-women-reimagined-banknotes

https://www.australia.com/en-us/things-to-do/aboriginal-australia.html

Strong Women of Asia

Source: Ballmemes.com

The Strong Women Series has been an eye-opener for me as the blogger. I sincerely hope that those who have taken the time to read the Series thus far have learned something; not only about the various women highlighted, but also about each continent, and are hopefully spurred to learn more.

The Series is about the Strong Women of the Continents; in essence, of the World. I have blogged about my favorite Strong Women of the Bible, and curated the Strong Women of the five hemispheres of Africa and the Americas (the North- (USA & Canada) and the South which comprises twelve (12) countries).

. . .

Women, and people, across the globe are generally the same everywhere; each fighting for one cause or the other. The Strong Women worldwide have, and continue to fight to liberate themselves against one form of injustice/violence or the other; which includes but are not limited to physical, sexual assault, financial, emotional, and mental. Women have fought to have a voice on matters concerning them and they continue to speak up against any form of discrimination.

“Representation matters, not just in Hollywood, but in our curricula and cultural consciousness.”

Teen Forbes

This post is about the Strong Women of Asia and it is an equally impressive list. For a continent that still struggles to liberate women, the list is inspiring. Please read on …

The Teen Vogue states that there were 11 Asian, Pacific Islander, or South Asian-American women in the 115th Congress. The 116th Congress had 10 Asian women, while the count for the 117th Congress, which convened on January 3rd is still unknown, but according to The LA Focus it includes 3 Korean women.

The continent of Asia comprises of 48 countries; with China (1,439,323,776) and India (1,380,004,385) being the most populous. There’s Eastern Asia, Southern, South-Eastern, Western, and Central Asia. Click here to see the countries (and populations) of Asia.

The above screenshot list was a big challenge to my geography! I’m probably not alone!! I was surprised to learn of a few countries myself 😊 As a matter of fact, writing the blog was equally challenging – my first draft consisted of only women from China and India! Since Asia consists of 48 countries, I had to do better and more research. The intent was to come up with at least two per country. Unfortunately that wasn’t totally possible. So pardon me that a few countries had more highlights.

Segue: Quiz: Test your knowledge

  1. How many of the Asian countries can you put in the right bucket?
  2. How many of the countries have you heard of?

p.s. if the screenshot is ineligible, click here for a clearer list which is equally interactive and can be sorted various ways. Put your answers in the comments. Thanks.

. . .

Asian Women, like their African counterparts, were (intentional use of the verb) one of the extremely submissive groups. To find a Strong Woman in the two continents, to highlight, is therefore commendable.

“Asian-Americans, especially Asian-American women, are often pigeonholed as meek or unassertive, rather than depicted as leaders.”

Teen Vogue

There were 11 Asian women in the 115th Congress (see pg. 11 of the link).

Eastern Asia

Xiang Jingyu. the first director of the Chinese Communist Women’s Bureau and one of the foremost revolutionaries of her time, advocating for women’s education rights and organizing mass labor strikes.

Anna May Wong is considered the first Chinese American Hollywood star … starred in a TV series — The Gallery of Madame Liu-Tsong — as the first Asian-American to top such a show.

Soong Mei-ling. was pivotal to gathering support for China’s war against Japan and in 1943 she became the first Chinese national and only the second woman to address both houses of the U.S. Congress.

Chien-Shiung Wu, Wu was born in China in a town north of Shanghai in 1912, to parents who not only believed in educating girls but also founded a school that took care to include them. Wu emigrated to the U.S. in 1936, where she ultimately taught physics at Princeton University, and where she made two key contributions to building the bombs that ended the war. A PhD UC Berkeley graduate, was credited with solving a problem that had bedeviled Enrico Fermi, and as Time notes, “she helped develop the method for separating nonfissionable uranium 238 from fissionable U-235—the bomb’s key fuel.”

Choe Son Hui is a vice minister of foreign affairs in North Korea and is the most senior female diplomat in the country.

Kim Song Hye is another leading female diplomat in the DPRK, who has primarily worked in dealing with relations with the South. Little is known about her personal background and but she’s one not related to the ruling Kim family.

Yuriko Koike, 65, Tokyo’s first female governor and Japan’s political star of the moment.

Yayoi Kusama, 90, is a contemporary artist, who’s still active in painting, film, performance, poetry, fashion and other arts. Her work has been recognised as one of the most important living artists in Japan.

Sadako Ogata. the only Japanese and first woman to lead the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Maki Akaida became the CEO of Uniqlo Japan and will soon be succeeding the richest man in Japan, Tadashi Yanai, as the CEO of Fast Retailing at a later stage.

p.s. most of the Strong Women of North Korea/DORK found were related to the ruling party and therefore unclear whether their positions were meritorious or nepotistical.

Southern Asia

Indira Gandhi. India’s to-date only female prime minister

Roshni Nadar is the chairwoman of HCL technologies in India. Her popularity stems from the fact that she is the first woman in India to head an IT firm. She was also listed as the 57th powerful woman in the world, as of 2019.

Amrit Kaur. India’s first Health Minister in 1947.

Divya Gokulnath is the Co-Founder of Byju’s Learning in India, that is now helping students learn different subjects with required tests and course materials.

Ameera Shah is the Managing Director of Metropolis Healthcare, the leading pathology lab in India that has developed a great fanbase in India, South Asia and even Africa.

Malala Yousafzai. On January 3, 2009, 11-year-old Malala’s first blog was published. She later became the face of women’s empowerment not only in Pakistan but around the world.

Queen Soraya Tarzi. was the face of change in Afghanistan — she was King Amanullah Khan’s only wife, breaking a tradition of polygamy; she went unveiled in public and encouraged the education of girls

South-Eastern Asia

The 11 countries of Southeast Asia include over 550 million people. The region is characterized by the relatively favorable position of women in comparison with neighboring East or South Asia. According to a Forbes’ list, Asian women, particularly those from Southeast Asia, are still a minority force in the powerful women community.

Corazon Aquino. the 11th president (and first female president) of the Philippines.

Maria Ressa. A Filipino journalist whose publication, Rappler, had been started as a Facebook page in 2011. The publication evolved into one of the Philippines’ most dynamic news outlets to expose dozens of fake and spam-heavy accounts Duterte supporters used to manipulate the online discourse that many now mistake for reality.

Aung San Suu Kyi, is ranked the highest among her Southeast Asian counterparts. Awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991 and, in 2015, was at the helm of the first civilian government that took power (albeit in a de facto capacity). She has been elected to the Burmese parliament and has become the leader of the biggest opposition party in Myanmar this year. Her significant contribution to the democratization and development of Myanmar and beyond makes Suu Kyi a well deserving figure in South-Eastern Asia.

Caroline Russell is single-handedly spearheading the BOH Plantations, in Malaysia, which was founded by her grandfather. The plantation has several units that account for almost 70% of Malaysia.

Preeyanart Soontornwata. became the CEO of B.Grimm Power, in 2017, and has helped the conglomerate in Thailand generate billions in revenue. The company is spread across 47 powerplants covering Vietnam, Laos and Thailand.

Yingluck Shinwatra, Thai Prime Minister. once the director of the biggest telecom company in Thailand before she entered politics in 2011. She has demonstrated her courage and the qualities as a leader particularly during and following the historical 2011 Thailand floods as she initiated various flood prevention and control measures in response to Thailand’s worst flood in 50 years.

Sri Mulyani Indrawati. Once Indonesian Minister of Finance from 2005 to 2010, Indrawati has been the managing director of the World Bank since 2010, overseeing operations and loans in Asia, Africa, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East.

Nurhayati Subakat, Co-founder and CEO of Paragon Technology & Innovation with 8,300 employees, and held 30% of the beauty products market in Indonesia. A trained chemical engineer, Subakat’s began her journey when she founded a company known as Pusaka Tradisi Ibu with her husband in 1985. The company makes hair-care products, before stepping into affordable make up line commonly known as Putri in 1993. As a devout Muslim, she understood the rising demand of halal make up and skincare products. In 1995, Wardah, rose in Arabic, was born.

Lily Kong is the president of the Singapore Management University and the first woman in Singapore to have a university; appreciated for her contribution to geography.

p.s. though, in business, almost 50% of the small and medium enterprises in Brunei are owned and/or run by women, there is not a single woman appointed in the Council of Cabinet Ministers.

Chea Serey, Director General of Cambodia National Bank

Western Asia

Lubna Olayan, CEO, Olayan Financing Company; one of the Kingdom’s most successful conglomerates with operations across the Middle East. In 2004, she became the first woman to join the board of a Saudi publicly listed company after being elected to the board of Alawwal Bank, and she currently serves as the board’s Vice Chairman.

Nabilah Al-Tunisi, chief engineer, Saudi Aramco. She began her career with Saudi Aramco in 1982. Besides working on the Aramco-Dow joint venture, she has developed software to monitor oil assets, implemented automation systems to speed up the transport of oil and gas, led engineers on alternative energy solutions, and managed oil and gas projects worth $40 billion.

Sumaya Al-Nasser, founder, Sumaya 369. She is Saudi Arabia’s first internationally certified female life and career coach. Al-Nasser holds a PhD in theology.

Reem Al Hashimi is UAE’s Minister of State for International Cooperation.

p.s. I have received scam emails bogusly using Reem Al Hashimi’s name. Now I know who she is and why her name is being used! Would never have, had not for this Series!!!

Lubna Al Qasimi is the UAE’s Minister for Tolerance and one of the region’s most prominent female leaders. She held the title of the most powerful woman in the Middle East in 2015 and in 2017, the most powerful Arab woman in government. She is the first woman to be appointed a ministerial position in the UAE and the first Emirati to receive the Clinton Global Citizen Award.

Mariam Al-Mansouri, the first female fighter pilot in UAE. Mariam, who has led UAE mission airstrikes against ISIS over Syria, is a true inspiration for women across the globe.

Mary Nazzal-Batayneh; the chairman of Landmark Amman Hotel – one of the most luxurious hotels in Amman.

Central Asia

Roza Otunbaeva, President of Kyrgyzstan. The Moscow-educated former diplomat is Central Asia’s first and only female president.

Raushan Sarsembayeva, is one of Kazakhstan‘s wealthiest and most powerful women. She founded the Kazakh Businesswomen’s Association

Dr. Ademi Zhidebayeva, was awarded the Khalyk Agysy (People’s Gratitude) award for her work during the pandemic – she delivered 20 babies a day in Kazakhstan.

Svetlana Ortikova, Chairwoman of Uzbek Senate’s Committee for Legislative and Judiciary Issues. A lawyer by profession, Scetlana formerly served as a senior prosecutor and headed the information and communication division of the Uzbekistan Prosecutor-General’s Office.

Mutabar Tojiboeva, Uzbek’s human rights activist. She has been honored with the prestigious Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders in Geneva and the International Women of Courage Award in Washington.

Akja Nurberdyeva: speaker of Turkmenistan‘s parliament

Patsy Takemoto Mink. the first woman of color and first Asian-American elected to the U.S. House to Representatives. She served as Hawaii’s representative for 12 terms. The crowning glory of her government service was her co-authorship of the Title IX Amendment of the Higher Education Act.

Tu Youyou was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine, in 2013, for her discovery for the treatment of malaria.

Aung San Suu Kyi. awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991 and, in 2015, was at the helm of the first civilian government that took power (albeit in a de facto capacity).

p.s. The few women who have attained the highest political offices in some Asian countries have done so because they are the daughters or wives of the country’s President or a famous man. It is therefore difficult to gauge their passions as truly advocates of women’s issues.

Asian Strong Women in Business

  1. Zhao Yan is the founder of Bloomage, a growth-driven property funding firm.
  2. Samantha Du leads the pharmaceutical agency Zai Lab, that has $6 billion market capitalization in the industry. The company was founded in 2014 and has very easily become the largest in China.
  3. Divya Gokulnath is the Co-Founder of Byju’s Learning in India, that is now helping students learn different subjects with required tests and course materials.
  4. Ameera Shah is the Managing Director of Metropolis Healthcare, the leading pathology lab in India that has developed a great fanbase in India, South Asia and even Africa.
  5. Nguyễn Thị Phương Thảo, President and CEO of VietJet Air.
  6. Akiko Naka. Found and CEO of Wantedly.
  7. Anna Fang, Partner and CEO of ZhenFund.
  8. Estina Ang, Founder, Executive Chairman and CEO of Ghim Li Group
  9. Lorraine Belo-Cincochan, CEO of Wilcon Depot Inc.
  10. Teresa Wibowo, CEO of ruparupa.com
  11. Han Seong-sook, CEO of Naver.
  12. Joanne Kua, Executive Director, Managing Director, and CEO of KSK Group & KSK Land.
  13. Kim So-hee, CEO of Nanda.
  14. Cindy Mi, Founder and CEO of VIPKID, an online platform that pairs students with tutors located in North America. Started in 2013, VIPKID is now the world’s largest K-12 English-language online educator, with 30,000 native-English speakers providing lessons to 200,000 students scattered in 35 countries.
  15. Zhang Xin, CEO of SOHO China, became an owner-companies responsible for dozens of real estate developments located in Beijing and Shanghai. She’s listed by Forbes as the 62nd Most Powerful Woman in the World.
  16. Nurhayati Subakat, Co-founder and CEO of Paragon Technology & Innovation with 8,300 employees, and held 30% of the beauty products market in Indonesia. A trained chemical engineer, Subakat’s began her journey when she founded a company known as Pusaka Tradisi Ibu with her husband in 1985. The company makes hair-care products, before stepping into affordable make up line commonly known as Putri in 1993. As a devout Muslim, she understood the rising demand of halal make up and skincare products. In 1995, Wardah, rose in Arabic, was born.
  17. Jane Jie Sun, CEO of Ctrip.com International, the largest travel agency in China since 2016.
  18. Joey Wat, CEO of Yum China; previously served as the CEO of KFC China, and managing director of A.S. Watson Group UK. was ranked as one of the Top 50 Most Influential Business Leader in China 2018 and Top 25 Most Powerful Women in Business in China 2017 by Fortune Chinese Edition. As of 2019, she is the only 33 female CEOs on the Fortune 500.
  19. Supamas Trivisvavet, President and CEO of CH. Karnchang, Thailand’s second-largest construction company.
  20. Mercy Wu, Chairman and CEO of Eslite Spectrum, the island’s largest retail bookstore and lifestyle chain, with 44 outlets across Taiwan, Hong Kong, and China. These outlets combined bookstores, art galleries, restaurants, and department stores. Additionally, it also has a boutique hotel in Taipei and residential property in Suzhou, China.
  21. Wei Sun Christianson, CEO of Morgan Stanley China.
  22. Somruedee Chaimongkol, CEO of Banpu whose asset is coal, has gained the nickname, “Asia’s First Lady of Coal”.
  23. Aireen Omar, Deputy Group CEO of AirAsia.

. . .

As we’ve always stated, our list is merely a sample and by no means exhaustive of the beautiful and commendable Strong Women. I believe that there is a Strong Woman in every home. More Strong Women of any of the Asian countries can be found by clicking on the various reference links.

If you read this far, I sincerely appreciate your time. This is a long read; my longest so far. Thank you.

References

Thanks for reading and following the Series. 😍✌🏾

Strong Women of The South Americas

South America is a continent south of North America, between the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. There are 12 countries in the continent namely,

  • Argentina
  • Bolivia
  • Brazil
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Ecuador
  • Guyana
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Suriname
  • Uruguay
  • Venezuela

Strong Women cut across cultures and continents. They are the women who fight for causes that liberate and supports women. They also defy stereotypical gender roles. Strong Women have innate inner strength; they are exceptionally wired so, and suffer much frustrations trying to minimize their strength to conform to societal gender norms.

Strong Women are trailblazers. They do not compete with men; they complement their men. And their men cherish them because they recognize both their inner strength and beauty.

According to CultureTrip, Latin America has produced no shortage of inspirational women, from bold politicians and bestselling authors to superstar feminist activists. As we’ve stated during the Series, it’s impossible to highlight every single one of Latin America’s Strong Women, but here’s a curated list “from the hundreds of inspiring women Latin America has to offer.”

  1. Rigoberta Menchú. Guatemalan human rights activist. She won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1992 for her fight to defend indigenous and human rights in her country during and after the Guatemalan Civil War. She’s now a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador and even ran for Guatemalan president in 2007 and 2011, a move which cemented her status as one of the country’s most influential people.
  2. Dandara of Palmares. A Brazilian warrior who knew capoeira and fought many battles to defend Palmares (present-day Alagoas, Brazil), a place where slaves who managed to escape, would settle. She had a big role in the fight against slavery in colonial Brazil. She was also the wife of Zumbi, one of Brazil’s of anti-slavery pioneers.
  3. Policarpa Salavarrieta, also known as La Pola, was a spy for the pro-independence Colombian forces. She is considered a symbol of courage and freedom.
  4. Manuela Saenz was an important figure in South America’s fight for independence and Simon Bolivar’s lover. She was known as the “Libertadora del libertador” (the liberator’s liberator) after saving Bolivar from an assassination attempt.
  5. Elvia Carrillo Puerto. Also known as “Monja Roja del Mayab,” she was a feminist activist who fought for women’s rights. She founded various feminist leagues which helped women with family planning programs, prenatal, and postnatal care. In 1923 she was elected as a member of Yucatan’s congress, making her the first Mexican woman to hold a position of this nature.
  6. Eva Duarte de Perón is one of Argentina’s most beloved, yet controversial figures. She was first lady of Argentina and played an important role in granting Argentine women the right to vote in 1947, and getting more women involved in politics.
  7. Juana Azurduy was the heroine of the independence of Upper Peru (present day Bolivia). After her husband’s death, she took control of the troops and achieved significant military victories.
  8. Evangelina Rodriguez became the first Dominican woman physician in1909. She treated poor people for free or for very little money, and handed out medicine for free. She was family planning advocate, and risked her life multiple times by clashing with dictator Rafael Trujillo.
  9. Teresa Carreño made an impact in the world as being a talented pianist. She was only nine years old when she performed her first concert in New York. She would later play at the White House for President Abraham Lincoln.
  10. Hermila Galindo was a pioneer in the feminist movement in Mexico, and made defending women’s rights the basis of her political career. She founded the feminist seminar The Modern Woman, which promoted the development of women and defended their position in the social structure. She fought for secular education, sex education and women’s right to exercise their sexuality.
  11. Eulalia Guzmán was the first female Mexican archaeologist. Guzmán was responsible for collecting a large amount of information on pre-Hispanic Mexico that determined historical details about the country.
  12. The Mirabal Sisters
    The Mirabal sisters (Patria, Minerva, and Maria Teresa) courageously opposed the dictatorship of Rafael Leónidas Trujillo in the Dominican Republic. They never gave up the fight dictatorship until the day they were assassinated by orders of Trujillo. Trujillo thought getting rid of the sisters would benefit him, but things didn’t go as he planned. Their assassination angered Dominicans and it is believed it contributed to the assassination of Trujillo one year later.
  13. Anabel Hernandez is a Mexican journalist and author of the book, “Los señores del narco”, which details the complicity between organized crime and the Mexican government, the police, the army, and different businesses. Hernandez has received numerous death threats since her book was published.
  14. Laureana Wright. A writer, journalist and important figure in Mexico’s feminist movement. She became interested in the social position of women from a young age. Wright expressed her ideas in a range of publications of the time, and founded the first feminist magazine in Mexico, Violetas del Anáhuac.
  15. Isabel Allende is a Chilean writer, who is famous for her novels. Allende has sold more than 57 million copies, and her work has been translated into 35 languages. In 2014, she received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama.
  16. Leona Vicario was one of Mexico’s first female journalists and a key player in the fight for independence from Spain. Leona was part of a correspondence network called “Los Guadalupes,” and the newspaper El Ilustrador Americano to write secret codes for revolutionaries. She was discovered and threatened with a life sentence in prison if she didn’t give up who she was working with. Leona chose to go to prison, but was quickly rescued by her colleagues and disguised as a beggar in order to escape.
  17. Gabriela Mistral. One of the most important figures in Chilean literature. Mistral was the first Latin American women to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1945.
  18. Chavela Vargas. An iconic ranchera singer with a unique, raspy, melancholic voice. A rebel from a young age, she was one of Pedro Almodovar’s favorite singers, and muses.
  19. Frida Kahlo. A Mexican artist who used art as a way to express her suffering and the physical struggles she endured after surviving a bus accident when she was 18 years old. In 1939 she exhibited her paintings in France after being invited by André Breton. One of her works became the first painting by a Mexican artist to be acquired by the Louvre Museum.
  20. Mariana Costa Checa. The brains behind Laboratoria, a business directed towards getting low-income women into the tech industry by providing them with web design classes, she’s been praised by both Barack Obama and Mark Zuckerberg. She was also recently recognized by MIT as one of the most innovative minds under 35 and named as one of just nine Latin American women in the BBC’s 2016 Women of the Year rankings.
  21. Comandanta Ramona. An iconic, indigenous, women’s rights activist and revolutionary. She led the 1994 San Cristóbal de las Casas uprising, in response to Mexico’s involvement in NAFTA and also participated in some of the first peace talks with the Mexican government.
  22. Berta Cáceres. Honduran environmental and indigenous land rights activist.
  23. Argelia Laya. A revolutionary Afro-Latina, Venezuelan political activist who fought for decades to eradicate ethnic, gender and able-bodied discrimination in her country, advocating peacefully for gender equality in the education system and women’s rights surrounding pregnancy and abortion along the way.
  24. María Teresa Ferrari. Argentinian doctor, educator and advocate for women’s rights María Teresa Ferrari was a pioneer during her lifetime and an icon after death, due to the revolutionary strides she took in the female healthcare sector. Ferrari brought gynaecological services to Argentina in 1925 and founded the first maternity ward, before becoming the first female Latin American university professor in 1927 and conducting research surrounding possible treatments for uterine tumours. She also founded the Argentina Federation of University Women.
  25. Eloísa Díaz. The Chilean pioneer who became South America’s first female doctor in 1887, a move which solidified Chile’s status as the first country to employ professional women. After qualifying and practising as a doctor, she became a physician and teacher, ultimately ascending to the position of Director of the School Medical Service of Chile. She also founded several nurseries and clinics for the poor, introduced school breakfasts and vaccinations, as well as anti-alcoholism, rickets and TB campaigns.

. . .

Ten Most Powerful Latin American Women in the Business World

  1. Geisha Williams. CEO and President, PG & E
  2. Grace Puma. Executive Vice-Pesident of Global Operations, PepsiCo
  3. Maria Castanon Moats. Vice-President PwC. Leader of insurance for United States and Mexico
  4. Sonia Dula. Vice-President of Bank of America for Latin America
  5. Gisel Ruiz. Executive Vice-President and Director of Operations of Sam’s Club, a Walmart division
  6. Maria Martinez. President, Salesforce Customer Success Group and Success Cloud. Manager of Salesforce for Latin America.
  7. Michele Docharty. Co-Director of Global Synthetics Products Distribution / General Head of Corporative Access, Values Division of Goldman Sachs
  8. Yasmine Winkler. CEO, Central Region, of UnitedHealthcare Community and State
  9. Adriana Cisneros. CEO, Cisneros
  10. Jessica Alba. Founder of The Honest Company

Permanence, perseverance and persistence in spite of all obstacles, discouragements, and impossibilities: It is this, that in all things distinguishes the strong soul from the weak.
Thomas Carlyle

Honorary mentions also go to:

  1. Nicaraguan poet Claribel Alegría,
  2. Mexico’s first indigenous female presidential candidate María de Jesús ‘Marichuy’ Patricio,
  3. The Brazilian Tina Turner Elza Soares,
  4. former Argentine First Lady Eva Perón,
  5. Nicaraguan activist Bianca Jagger,
  6. Chilean Prime Minister Michelle Bachelet
  7. Ecuadorian activist Dolores Cacuango.

. . .

For The Best Hispanic & Latina Actresses

For Quotes from Strong South American Women

Strong Women of The Americas – North II – Canada

Source: CanadasHistory.ca

Preamble

Successful women everywhere have been known to defy several odds in their pursuit of success. But those odds are immensely more for the Strong Women. In addition to all the challenges that women already face, the Strong Woman has more to contend with mentally.

Mentally Strong Women though caring and nurturing, are equally enterprising, they do not spend time idly chatting, but use their time wisely and constructively, they exude confidence and character. They are also extremely independent and may often be misconstrued as not needing anyone’s help. They do need help, but send a message that they are not helpless. They value honesty in relationships. Majority of Strong Women embrace professions/careers historically reserved for men.

Unfortunately, regarding careers, women still deal with inequalities in earnings; aka gender pay gaps.

Last year, several celebrities came out to share their experiences.

But celebrities are not the only ones experiencing gender pay gaps. Ordinary people like you and I (if a lady/woman or even a minority) also experience it.

According to Payscale, “In 2020, women make only $0.81 for every dollar a man makes. … This figure represents a 2 percent improvement from 2019 and a 7 percent improvement from 2015, when the median salary for men was roughly 26 percent higher than the median salary for women.”

Canada’s Strong Women

I learned some new things writing this piece about Canada and both its historic and modern Women. One thing that stood out was that the historic women were also activists who fought for one cause or the other. The modern women everywhere are standing on the backs of the historic women; making the historic ceilings their own modern foundations. Unfortunately, lately, being an activist has connoted negativity which ought not to be.

. . .

Whether we publicly acknowledge it or not, each one of us is standing up (or fighting for) something. What are you standing up for (or against) that you will love to be remembered for?

. . .

Historic

  • Doris Anderson (1921–2007); Magazine editor and women’s movement champion.
  • Kenojuak Ashevak (1927–2013); An inspiring Inuit artist.
  • Emily Carr (1871–1945); A West Coast artist who has been described as “Canada’s Van Gogh.”
  • Mary Shadd Cary (1823–1893); First black woman newspaper editor in North America; a tireless advocate for universal education, black emancipation, and women’s rights.
  • Thérèse Casgrain (1896–1981); Activist, radio host, and politial leader; founded the Provincial Franchise Committee for Women’s Suffrage in 1921 and later hosted a prominent radio program, called Fémina, for Radio-Canada; the first female leader of a political party in Canada — the left-leaning Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF) — in the 1940s.
  • Ga’axstal’as, Jane Constance Cook (1870–1951); Kwakwaka’wakw leader, cultural mediator, and activist.
  • Viola Desmond (1914–1965); Challenged segregation practices in Nova Scotia. Long before the modern civil rights movement in the United States, a black woman from Halifax took a stand for racial equality in a rural Nova Scotia movie theatre.
  • Mary Two–Axe Earley (1911–1996); Challenged law discriminating against First Nations women.
  • Marcelle Ferron (1924–2001); Quebec painter and stained glass artist.
  • Hannah (Annie) Gale (1876–1970); First alderwoman in the British Empire.
  • Anne Hébert (1916–2000); A writer whose work was universally recognized in all francophone countries.
  • Adelaide Hoodless (1857–1910); Educational reformer and founder of the Women’s Institute.
  • Pauline Johnson (1861–1913); Poet and public speaker.
  • Marie Lacoste Gérin-Lajoie (1867–1945); Feminist, social reformer, lecturer, educator, and author.
  • Margaret Laurence (1926–1987);One of the giants of Canadian literature.

https://www.refinery29.com/en-ca/2018/12/218578/29-powerhouses-canadian-women-influence

https://www.cbc.ca/strombo/videos/womens-executive-network-names-canadas-100-most-powerful-women

Modern

The below 100 Canadian Modern Women were “the recipients of the 2011 Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Awards.” Undoubtedly, the Award may have generated a new set of the Too 100 List. We however acknowledge the contributions of these women and all those coming after them

  • COMMUNICATIONS
  • Clara Angotti, President, Next Pathway Inc.
  • Monica Channa, Executive Director, Operations, Akran Marketing
  • Eveline Charles, Founder, Eveline Charles Salons, Spas and Beauty
  • Lynne Fafard, President and Chief Executive Officer, Riverbend Group of Companies
  • Samantha Kennedy, Creator and Chief Executive Officer, Booty Camp Fitness
  • Margot Micallef, Founder and President, Oliver Capital Partners Inc.
  • Gloria Rajkumar, President and Chief Executive Officer, SIMAC Canada Inc.
  • PUBLIC SECTOR LEADERS
  • Rear Admiral Jennifer Bennett, Commander of the Naval Reserve, Canadian Navy
  • Karen Branscombe, Superintendent, School District 2, New Brunswick
  • Janice Charette, Associate Secretary to the Cabinet and Deputy Minister Intergovernmental Affairs, Privy Council Office of Canada
  • Moya Greene, Chief Executive, Royal Mail
  • Dana Hayden, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation, Government of British Columbia
  • The Honourable Marjory LeBreton, Leader of the Government in the Senate
  • Dr. Lesley Lovett-Doust, President and Vice Chancellor, Nipissing University
  • Marilyn McLaren, President and Chief Executive Officer, Manitoba Public Insurance Corporation
  • Twyla Meredith, President and Chief Executive Officer, Saskatchewan Gaming Corporation
  • Heather Munroe-Blum, Principal and Vice-Chancellor, McGill University
  • Gail Stephens, City Manager, City of Victoria
  • Jennifer Stoddart, Privacy Commissioner of Canada, Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada
  • Marian Zerr, Deputy Minister, Saskatchewan Ministry of Social Services
  • FUTURE LEADERS
  • Shelby Austin, Founder, ATD Legal Services PC
  • Ashley Hilkewich, Director, Partner Relations and International Operations, Free the Children
  • Lesley Scorgie, Author, Rich by Thirty and Rich By Forty; Owner, Rich By Inc.
  • Rumeet Toor, President, Jobs in Education; Founder, The Toor Centre for Teacher Education; and PhD Candidate, The University of Toronto
  • TRAILBLAZERS AND TRENDSETTERS
  • Dr. Catherine Aczel Boivie, Senior Vice President, Information and Technology Management, Vancity; Chief Executive Officer, Inventure Solutions, Vancity Credit Union
  • Col. Jennie Carignan, Acting Brigade Commander-5th Canadian Brigade- Group, Department of National Defense
  • Eva Carissimi, Sudbury Smelter Director, Xstrata Nickel
  • Dr. Fiona Costello, Associate Professor, Departments of Clinical Neurosciences and Surgery, Clinician Scientist, Hotchkiss Brain Institute
  • Susan Doniz, Former Director and Chief Information Officer Research and Development, Product Supply and Sales, Global Beauty and Grooming, Procter and Gamble; Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer, Aimia
  • Leslie Gales, President, Midland Group of Companies Inc.
  • Dr. Anne-Claude Gingras, Principal Investigator, Scientist, Mount Sinai Hospital
  • Frieda Granot, Senior Associate Dean, Strategic Development and External Relations, Sauder School Of Business, UBC
  • Dr. Roberta Jamieson, President and Chief Executive Officer, National Aboriginal Achievement Foundation
  • Connie Linder, Founder and President, Green Pages Directory Inc.; Co-Founder and Vice President Communications, Polymer Research Technologies
  • Patricia O’Malley, Chair, Accounting Standards Board
  • Dr. Arlene Ponting, Chief Executive Officer, Science Alberta Foundation
  • Vivian Prokop, Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director, Canadian Youth Business Foundation
  • Poonam Puri, Associate Professor of Law and Co-Director, Hennick Centre for Business and Law, Osgoode Hall Law School, York University
  • Dr. Jacqueline Shan, Chief Scientific Officer, Afexa Life Sciences
  • Victoria Sopik, President, Kids & Company Ltd
  • Constance Sugiyama, Partner, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Fraser Milner Casgrain Law
  • Ilse Treurnicht, Chief Executive Officer, MaRS Discovery District
  • Brig. Gen. Christine Whitecross, Deputy for the Communication Directorate, International Security Assistance Force Headquarters, NATO
  • Dr. Wanda Wuttunee, Professor, Native Studies and Director, Aboriginal Business Education Partners, University of Manitoba
  • FOUNDATION CHAMPIONS
  • Kay Blair, Executive Director, Community MicroSkills Development Centre
  • Iris Almeida-Côté, President and CEO, Canada World Youth
  • Fiona Macfarlane, Chief Inclusiveness Officer and Managing Partner, Western Canada, Ernst and Young LLP
  • Cybele Negris, Co-Founder and President, WebNames.ca
  • ARTS AND COMMUNICATIONS
  • Nancy Chapelle, Managing Director, Content and Programming, TVO
  • Margaret Atwood, Author
  • Christina Jennings, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Shaftesbury Films Inc.
  • Michèle Maheux, Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer, Toronto International Film Festival
  • Deepa Mehta, Director, Producer and Screenwriter
  • Mia Pearson, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, North Strategic
  • Heather Shaw, Executive Chair, Corus Entertainment Inc.
  • PROFESSIONALS
  • Nora Anne Aufreiter, Director, McKinsey & Company Canada
  • Cindy Forbes, Executive Vice President and Chief Actuary, Manulife Financial
  • Anne-Marie Hubert, Managing Partner, Advisory Services, Ernst and Young LLP
  • Valerie Mann, Partner, Lawson Lundell LLP
  • Rosemary McCarney, President and Chief Executive Officer, Plan Canada
  • Dale Ponder, Managing Partner and Chief Executive, Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP
  • Margaret Ross, Partner, Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP
  • Godyne N.L. Sibay, Partner and member of the McCarthy Board of Partners, McCarthy Tétrault LLP
  • Beth Wilson, Managing Partner, Toronto Office; Canadian Managing Partner, Community Leadership, KPMG
  • Ava Yaskiel, Partner, Norton Rose OR LLP
  • CORPORATE EXECUTIVES
  • Elyse Allan, President and Chief Executive Officer, GE Canada
  • Joey Berdugo- Adler, Chief Executive Officer, Diesel Canada and Founder, ONEXONE
  • Bonnie Brooks, President and Chief Executive Officer, Hudson’s Bay Company
  • Marie-Claude Boisvert, Chief Operating Officer, Desjardins Venture Capital, Desjardins Group
  • Lisa Colnett, Senior Vice President, Human Resources and Corporate Services, Kinross Gold Corporation
  • Sarah Davis, Chief Financial Officer, Loblaw Companies Limited
  • Betty DeVita, President, MasterCard Canada
  • Debra Hewson, President and Chief Executive Officer, Odlum Brown Limited
  • Zabeen Hirji, Chief Human Resources Officer, Royal Bank of Canada
  • Janet Holder, President, Enbridge Gas Distribution Inc.
  • Lynn Jeanniot, Senior Vice President, Human Resources and Corporate Affairs, National Bank
  • Debra Kelly-Ennis, President and Chief Executive Officer, Diageo Canada Inc.
  • Cheryl Longo, Executive Vice President, Card Products and National Collections, CIBC
  • Christine Magee, President, Sleep Country Canada
  • Micheline Martin, Regional President, Quebec Headquarters, RBC
  • Ellen Moore, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Chubb Insurance Company of Canada
  • Stacey Mowbray, President and Chief Executive Officer, The Second Cup ltd
  • Janice Odegaard, Senior Vice President and General Counsel, Suncor Energy Inc.
  • Leslie O’Donoghue, Executive Vice President, Operations, Agrium Inc.
  • Susan Paish, Chief Executive Officer, Pharmasave Drugs Ltd.
  • Nathalie Pilon, President, Thomas and Betts
  • Susan Riddell Rose, President and Chief Executive Officer, Perpetual Energy
  • Mandy Shapansky, President and Chief Executive Officer, Xerox Canada
  • Launi Skinner, Chief Executive Officer, First West Credit Union
  • Connie Stefankiewicz, President and Chief Executive Officer, BMO InvestorLine
  • Kathleen Taylor, President and Chief Executive Officer, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
  • Nancy Tower, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Emera Incorporated
  • Janet Wood, Executive Vice President, Maintenance Go-To-Market, SAP
  • CORPORATE DIRECTORS
  • Dr. Gail Cook-Bennett, Chair of the Board, Manulife Financial
  • Carol Hansell, Senior Partner, Davies Ward Phillips and Vineberg LLP
  • Catherine McLeod-Seltzer, Chair, Bear Creek Mining and Pacific Rim Mining and Corporate Director, Kinross Gold Corp, Major Drilling, Troon Resources
  • Mary Mogford, Corporate Director, PotashCorp
  • Guylaine Saucier, Corporate Director, Bank of Montreal, Areva, Danone and Wendel
  • Dr. Carol Stephenson, Dean, Richard Ivey School of Business

. . .

ThinkTalk applauds the contributions of all the historic and Strong Women everywhere and, at a later time, would like to compile a list of all the StrongWomen highlighted in our Series as a collective memoir.

Thanks for reading and folloing tge Series.

Strong Women of The Americas – North: I

Thank you for reading the Strong Women Series. I hope that you found it informative. It has been a learning process as I have enjoyed writing and researching about these incredible women across the continents.

So far, I have posted the Strong Women of The Bible in three-parts:

  1. http://think-talk.org/2020/11/15/strong-women-a-series-strong-women-in-the-bible/;
  2. http://think-talk.org/2020/11/17/strong-women-a-series-strong-women-in-the-bible-ii/; and
  3. http://think-talk.org/2020/11/22/strong-women-a-series-strong-women-in-the-bible-i-iii/

and the Strong Women of Africa.

. . .

We continue today with the Strong Women of The Americas. For the benefit of those who don’t know, The North and South America make up the Americas. The North American Strong Women, particularly those of the arts and entertainment in the United States of America, are globally known but little or nothing might be known of the South American Strong Women. But together they do exist and have also scaled numerous hurdles to earn the badge.

The Strong Women of North America, have defied the odds and continue to do so, from arts and entertainment to heading various businesses, finance, and technology corporations, to include recently being voted as (and soon to be) Vice President. There’s absolutely no way that we could list every Strong Woman in this part of the continent. My hope is that those who are highlighted will represent all. The following are links to specific industry’s Strong Women. Please click on, and open, the link to appreciate each woman.

. . .

It takes a real and stronger man to be in a relationship with a Strong Woman because he recognizes that his woman’s strength does not threaten his masculinity but only makes them both stronger; not weaker! In this context, I’m not writing about physical strength, but of a strong confident character. I therefore salute stronger men, in North America, like Bill Clinton (Hilary Clinton), Barak Obama (Michelle Obama) and Stedman Graham (Oprah Winfrey) and other men like them globally.

A woman is like a tea bag – only in hot water do you realize how strong she is.

Eleanor Roosevelt/Nancy Reagan

More Strong Women Quotes

I leave you with these beautiful quotes in honor of Strong Women worldwide:

Credits: wisesayings.com

It is not alone the fact that women have generally had to spend most of their strength in caring for others that has handicapped them in individual effort; but also that they have almost universally had to care wholly for themselves.

Anna Garlin

Permanence, perseverance and persistence in spite of all obstacles, discouragements, and impossibilities: It is this, that in all things distinguishes the strong soul from the weak.

Thomas Carlyle

Sometimes, being strong is to forgive in the name of love, to make someone smile when our own heart is broken, to comfort a friend when we ourselves needed help and to keep faith when we have lost hope.

Brigitte Nicole

Strong Women: A Series – I-III – Strong Women in the Bible

I began the Strong Women in The Bible highlighting my favorites. I had to curtail the post for swift readability. This is the third and concluding post of the sub-series. You will find the previous posts here, Please read along and, at the end, nominate your favorite from the eight. If you have a Strong Woman in The Bible not highlighted, please feel free to mention it in the comments.

“Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.”

Proverbs 31:30

Proverbs 31

The Book of Proverbs, Chapter 31 comes to mind when we talk or hear about biblical women. The Chapter embodies characteristics of a Strong Woman then and now. The Modern Chapter 31 Woman carries a cellphone and iPad on one hand and her running shoes on the other. She is ready to change from office wear to gym wear to the evening office function in a swift. And on arrival at home, equally swift to place her portfolio on the table and grab the blender and pot to prepare dinner for her household. Men, she wears several hats for which she’s hardly acknowledged!

Reading on, Esther, Hannah, Mary, Naomi, Rahab, and Sarah all embody the Proverbs 31 and more!

. . .

Esther

We begin with Esther, also known as Hadassah, as a Proverb 31 and Strong Woman in the Bible. Esther is one of two women who has a Book in the Bible dedicated to her. Though I do not like the manner in which she married the king, Ahasuerus, her story is nonetheless unique in that, by prayer and fasting, she saved her tribe/nation.

“… Esther obtained favor in the sight of all them that looked upon her” She also obtained grace and favor in the king’s sight that he set the royal crown upon her head, and made her queen.”

Book of Esther

Esther was a Jew, but she had not yet shown her kindred nor her people in the palace; as her uncle Mordecai, who raised her, had charged her.

A decree was made that would kill all Jews. Her uncle Mordecai, on hearing, sent a message to Esther stating, “Think not with thyself that thou shalt escape in the king’s house, more than all the Jews …
‭‭maybe thou has come for such a time as this.” Esther requested that all Jews in the city join her to pray and fast for three days so she can go to the king to reverse the decree.

“And if I perish, I perish.”

‭‭Have you ever gotten to a point of dilemma where you knew something’s got to give? What do you do? Take cue from Esther‬ and remember; “not by might, nor by power …‭” I pray that you find favor and grace with God always.

Hannah

Hannah was a prophetess and worshipper in Jerusalem. She was the Mother of Samuel, the prophet. Um 😟 a parent-prophet/ess bears a child/children-prophets/prophetesses! Parents please pay attention to your children and help develop their gifting early.

Bible readers and scholars are familiar with Hannah’s story which is one of hope, faith, and perseverance. She was one of two wives but the more-dearly-loved by her husband. However, “the Lord shut her womb” that she was unable to conceive. “Lord shut her womb” simply means that it was by divine resolution and not medical or anything was wrong with her womb. Meanwhile the other wife was popping out babies like a puppy! She also reveled in making Hannah miserable. Hannah fasted and prayed earnestly for a child. She finally got her wish and dedicated her son back to God. Read her story in the Book of 1 Samuel 1.

“For as the woman originates from the man, so also man is born through the woman; and all things [whether male or female] originate from God [as their Creator].” – ‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭11:12‬ ‭AMP‬‬

Mary

There are a few Marys in The Bible. We’ll only highlight Mary, the wife of Joseph and mother of our Lord Jesus. By sheer virtue of being the Lord’s mother, her story need no introduction to any. A woman of faith and unfathomable trust. A woman of strength watching her son’s persecution and still trusting! I pray that we all grow stronger and deeper in our faith and trust in God. You can read extensively about Mary, mother of Jesus, in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.

Naomi

As I began to write on Naomi, I paused and wondered “maybe I should have chosen Ruth instead.” Ruth is the other woman dedicated with a Book in the Bible. But, I’ll stick to my initial choice.

Naomi embodies strength under control having faced tremendous adversities. Few, men or women, would have lost their minds under such adverse conditions. Naomi is Orpah and Ruth’s mother-in-law. She found herself suddenly widowed. Shortly after, both her sons died. Naomi entreated with her daughters-in-law to return to their parents’ homes. Orpah kissed her and left, but Ruth chose to stay to care for her.

“Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord deal with me, be it ever so severely, if even death separates you and me.” – Ruth 1:16-17

Together, they “formed an alliance to further empower themselves.” May you have godly alliances.

Rahab

God will use the most unlikely of us for His purposes. Such was the case with this “strong woman.” Rahab was a harlot who, according to Wikipedia, helped to “hide two men who had been sent to reconnoiter the city prior to their attack.” – Joshua 2:3-23

Sarah

If Abraham was the father of all nations, Sarah, his wife, can equally and rightfully be called the mother of all nations. Despite Sarah’s age, the Bible says that she was past childbearing age, believed God and still bore a son, Isaac, at the age of 99.

“Through faith also Sara herself received strength to conceive seed, and was delivered of a child when she was past age, because she judged him faithful who had promised.”
‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭11:11‬ ‭

Modern day women are almost nearing this age in natural childbearing. I have seen women who had their first child at 40, 50, and even 60-years! Any woman reading this who desires a child and is struggling, I want to encourage you to believe and hope in God that it will surely happen. I struggled for a few years before having my own. Despite assurances from my doctor and gynecologist, it just didn’t happen. I could blog about this another time.

. . .

Thank you for taking the time to read my favorite Strong Women of The Bible. I hope there was a nugget or two glimpsed from it. Have any question on any of the Women, please feel free to ask. Also leave a comment on what blessed you; share and like 😊❤️✌🏾🙏🏾

Strong Women: A Series – I-II – Strong Women in the Bible

I have eight (8) favorite Strong Women in the Bible. I highlighted Abigail in my previous post. We’ll continue today with Deborah, Dorcas, and Esther.

Deborah

Deborah was both a prophetess and a judge in Israel. A prophetess is a woman who God has chosen to carry His Word to His people (you and I). The male version is a prophet.

Deborah judged Israel at the time. Israel “did evil in the sight of the Lord.” There was a war between Israel and Canaan and Israel was oppressed for twenty years. The people of Israel cried out to the Lord. They went to Deborah for justice. God gave Deborah a Word to have Barak lead his troops to defend Israel.
‭‭
“And Barak said unto her, If thou wilt go with me, then I will go: but if thou wilt not go with me, then I will not go. And she (Deborah) said, I will surely go with thee: notwithstanding the journey that thou takest shall not be for thine honor; for the Lord shall sell Sisera into the hand of a woman. And Deborah arose, and went with Barak to Kedesh.”

The end was horrible, but as Deborah prophesied, Sisera (the captain of the king of Canaan’s army) was delivered unto the hand of Jael, the wife of Heber the Kenite.

. . .

We all need a Deborah; a backboner; a woman of godly character whose words are invaluable in our lives; a Strong Woman who will go to war with and for us. These are indispensable individuals. I hope you have such a woman in your circle.

If you would like to read the full story, grab your/a Bible and open it to the Book of Judges Chapter 4.

Credits: Quoteambition

Dorcas

Dorcas, also known as Tabitha, was known for her charity specifically to the widows such that when she died, she was mourned by “all the widows…crying and showing (Peter) the robes and other clothing that she had made while she was still with them” The Bible says that she was full of good works and alms deeds. Read about her in the Book of Acts Charter 9.

Do you have clothes and shoes in your closets that you either no longer wear or fit you? Why not help someone less fortunate than you by donating them away. Do a good deed today. Charity (generosity or good works) doesn’t necessarily have to be big. A small gesture and random acts of kindness goes a long way in the eyes of God.

. . .

I once read about a late evangelist (don’t remember now who it was exactly ) when, on a sick bed, prayed and called God to remembrance on all the good deeds he had done and donations he had given over the years. That if God could heal him not because he deserved it but to count all his deeds as an offering and sacrifice. He ended the prayer, “let them answer for me and heal me.” He stated, miraculously, that he was out of the hospital the next day!

“A strong woman stands up for herself. A stronger woman stands up for everybody else.”

Quoteambition

Esther

Esther, also known as Hadassah, is one of two women who has a Book in the Bible dedicated to her. Though I do not like the manner in which she married the king, Ahasuerus, her story is nonetheless unique in that, by prayer and fasting, she saved her tribe.

“Esther obtained favor in the sight of all them that looked upon her”

She also obtained grace and favor in the king’s sight that he set the royal crown upon her head, and made her queen.

Esther was a Jew, but she had not yet shewed her kindred nor her people in the palace; as her uncle Mordecai, who raised her, had charged her.

A decree was made that would kill all Jews. Her uncle Mordecai, on hearing, sent a message to Esther stating, “Think not with thyself that thou shalt escape in the king’s house, more than all the Jews … maybe thou has come for such a time as this.” Esther requested that all Jews in the city join her to pray and fast for three days so she can go to the king to reverse the decree.

“And if I perish, I perish.”

King Ahasuerus granted Esther’s request and not only reversed the decree, but ordered Haman (the one who sought to kill all Jews) to be hung. Read more in the Book of Esther.

. . .

May you Strong Lady/Woman find favor with God and with all. May your prayers receive speedy attention and answers from God Almighty. May you also be a pillar of support for your husband and children iJN.

Thanks for reading.

Strong Women: A Series – I-I – Strong Women in the Bible

Strong” is both an adverb and an adjective. Often when used to refer to a lady or woman, the first thought of “strong” is that of a forceful feminine. But, please if I may don my gift-of-teaching hat on for a second to educate us a little bit today – the word “strong” means a variety of things. Just look in the dictionary!

Strong Women” exhibit godly character, are beautiful inside-out, are not boastful, are on their knees praying or crying to God over circumstances rather than fist-fighting, they surrender to God rather than to people, and are meek (strength under-cover).

Strong Women are entrepreneurs and know how to manage what’s in their hands to take care of their household. They often are sisters or mothers to their neighborhood’s kids. They also are not consumers, but are versed in multiplying whatever has been given to them. A modern-day Proverbs 31 Strong Woman knows when to take a rest from the chores to reenergize.

Strong Women complete their men; not overshadow them nor be allowed to be under-shadowed. (p.s. real men don’t push their ladies/women to the background). And should they be called to singleness, Strong ladies/women are proud that they have been so chosen and not allow the world to make them feel that they’ve been overlooked. Strong Women empower one another; not compete with one another.

. . .

Our starting point of the Strong Women Series is highlighting the Strong Women in The Bible. For those who don’t know, The Bible is the holy, and ought-to-be-reference, book for every Christian. The Strong Women in the Bible embody the above traits and more.

There are 157 women in the Bible; depending on the version you read. I will not bore you with details of each one of them. If you’re interested in reading or learning about every woman in the Bible, click here. I will only highlight a few of my favorite Bible Strong Women; they are Mary, Sarah, Esther, Abigail, Deborah, Dorcas, Naomi, and even Rahab. Yes, Rahab! Woohoo!! Please read on:

Abigail

My first strong woman is Abigail (other Bible versions spell her name as Abigal).

Abigail was a woman of good understanding and a beautiful countenance. She was married to Nabal who, though was great, was unfortunately churlish (meaning stingy and rude) and evil in his doings. I love Abigail’s wisdom in handling a matter that could have warranted the death of her husband if not for her discreet handling.

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Here goes

David, the king, was in the wilderness mourning the death of the prophet, Samuel. On one of the days while still in the wilderness, David sent a peaceful request to Nabal asking Nabal to give him and his troop some food and drinks (my version). As king, David, could have forcefully taken everything he wanted. To everyone’s amazement, Nabal not only turned the request down, but “said, Who is David? and who is the son of Jesse? … Shall I then take my bread, and my water, and my flesh and give it unto men, whom I know not whence they be? … But one of the young men told Abigail, Nabal’s wife, saying, Behold, David sent messengers out of the wilderness to salute our master; and he railed on them. But the men (referring to David’s men) were very good unto us, and we were not hurt, neither missed we any thing, … Now therefore know and consider what thou wilt do; for evil is determined against our master, and against all his household: for he is such a son of Belial, that a man cannot speak to him … Then Abigail made haste, and generously loaded her asses with nourishments. And she said unto her servants, Go on before me; behold, I come after you. But she told not her husband Nabal … And when Abigail saw David, she hasted, and lighted off the ass, and fell before David on her face, and bowed herself to the ground, And fell at his feet, and said, Upon me, my lord, upon me let this iniquity be: and let thine handmaid, I pray thee, speak in thine audience, and hear the words of thine handmaid … And David said to Abigail, Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, which sent thee this day to meet me: For in very deed, as the Lord God of Israel liveth, which hath kept me back from hurting thee, except thou hadst hasted and come to meet me, surely there had not been left unto Nabal by the morning light any that pisseth against the wall (this is King James’ version of the Bible. There are other lighter and friendlier versions) … So David received of her hand that which she had brought him, and said unto her, Go up in peace to thine house; see, I have hearkened to thy voice, and have accepted thy person.”

Nabal surprisingly died ten days after the incident.

Read details of Abigail in the Book of 1 Samuel‬ ‭Chapter 25.

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There’s definitely a lot to be learned from Abigail’s attitude. I leave you to draw your own takeaways. But, she’s one of my favorites.

Thanks for reading. Till next time, stay blessed😍

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Strong Women: A Series

Historically, women were supposed to be seen and not heard;
Historically, women were banished to the kitchen;
Historically, women were subservient to men and their husbands; even girls to their sibling brothers!
Historically, a woman’s role post-marriage was to care for everyone – husband, house, children, and sometimes in-laws;
Historically, women were not allowed to vote;
Historically, women were not allowed to be educated; no school nor college,
Historically, if women went to school, they studied gender-specific courses such as nursing or teaching;
Historically, some cultures kill the baby girls at birth! Do they not realize that the woman birth the son and if they continue killing the girls at birth, the land might neither son (boy) nor daughter (girl) have! and
Historically, women earned much less than their male counterparts for doing the same job!

But few women have defied the historic conventions, restrictions, and impediments. The few that did had to be strong and bold. They relentlessly warred against the tide, and had to overcome atypical stereotypes. I bet it was no joke during those times that they underwent the challenges.

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We salute and appreciate the Strong Women’s efforts because they paved the way for all women; old, young, and yet unborn.

“We stand on the shoulders of the women who came before us, women who had to fight for the rights we now take for granted.”

Sheryl Sandberg, author of Lean In

Thank goodness that today, women have subverted the various hurdles and now lead major roles in various industries.

From the A-to-Z of industry; architecture, aeronautics, to business, computer to engineering, finance, geology, information technology, to mathematics, media, military, to politics, robotics, and zoology, there is a woman executive at the forefront of each and every industry.

Despite penetrating the glass ceiling, a recent report published by Deloitte, however, stated that “women are still largely under-represented on corporate boards globally, and progress to change this trend continues to be slow.” Deloitte profiled women from sixty-six (66) countries. The highlights of the report included:

  • • Women hold 16.9 percent of board seats worldwide …
  • • Women hold only 5.3 percent of board chair positions and 4.4 percent of CEO roles globally.
  • • Women hold 12.7 percent of CFO roles globally – nearly three times that of CEO positions.

There are still more women needed at the top and in the boardroom. Ladies everywhere, promote one another and don’t be the only one to occupy at the top. The sum of all of us is surely greater than each of us. Synergy! Collaboration! Love! Unity! we need them all!!!

Strong Women Arise

Strong Women stand upright in your belief. Believe that there’s a purpose behind your strength. Your Creator wired you so. Give no apology. He’s the Potter and you are the clay. Don’t you suppose that He could have made you a jello if He wanted to?
Your strength and every fiber of your being were wired according to your purpose.

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I once heard the Christian Author and Speaker Joyce Meyer say that she didn’t know how to sew a button on her blouse or her husband’s shirt; that she doesn’t enjoy cooking and doing other “feminine” things. For this reason, she envied her neighbor who was homely and gifted with those things she lacked. When she prayed about it, God told her to leave all that alone because she and her neighbor both have different assignments. Since then, she enjoys her neighbor’s cooking because she always brings her a plate!

I included this to remind Women globally that we are each wired differently. And there’s no cause for competition or envy.

“The truth is nobody knows what’s inside of you. Only you know what’s inside of you. Only you know what you can accomplish, and what you’re capable of …

Jennifer Lopez

I propose to you, Strong Woman, that you probably are unaware of your strength. You have no clue what you’re capable of until you are faced with a challenge. Like water in its purest form as liquid turns into ice when placed in a freezer; so a Strong Woman swiftly changes her demeanor to match any ordeal thrown at her. Some might label you as having dual or multiple personalities. Don’t mind them; just ignore them, but complete your task.

The Strong Woman is always so sweet and hospitable to her family, guests, and neighbors. But don’t mess with her nor her kids if you don’t want to see her instantly transform into a ferocious Lion King!

“We need women who are so strong they can be gentle, so educated they can be humble, so fierce they can be compassionate, so passionate they can be rational, and so disciplined they can be free.”

Kavita Ramdas

Strong Women abound everywhere; from the continents of Africa, to The Americas, to Asia, Australia and Europe. Few are salient and widely-known. But the greater majority are in obscurity. You most likely live with one – your Mom. Yes, your Mom is a Strong Woman. Acknowledge and thank her today for keeping the fort and faith at home. Don’t wait till Mother’s Day – her day is everyday.

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I’m beginning this series of Strong Women and will be featuring historically and modern-day Strong Women. Please read along with me/us.

Thanks for reading the first part.