Biographies

Women have always played an active role in history. Explore some of the historical women and contemporary newsmakers that continue to impact the world. New biographies are added regularly, so check back to discover inspiring new stories!

 

Biography

Lillian Wald

Lillian D. Wald helped to bring health care to the residents of New York’s Lower East Side at the turn of the twentieth century.
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Biography

Maggie Lena Walker

Maggie Lena Walker was one of the foremost female business leaders in the US and the first woman to own a bank.
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Biography

Madam C.J. Walker

Madam C.J. Walker was an entrepreneur, philanthropist, and activist. She rose from poverty in the South to become one of the wealthiest African American women of her time.
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Biography

Nanfu Wang

A 2020 MacArthur Foundation Genius Grant winner, Nanfu Wang uses film to explore the relationship between individuals and governments.
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Biography

Mercy Otis Warren

Mercy Otis Warren was a published poet, political playwright and satirist during the age of the American Revolution.
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Biography

We’wha

We’wha, a Lhamana (Zuni Two Spirit) individual, took on both male & female tasks as a Zuni cultural ambassador and pottery and textile artist. Also a spiritual leader, We’wha endeavored to preserve the history, traditions, & knowledge of the Zuni people.
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Biography

Phillis Wheatley

Despite spending much of her life enslaved, Phillis Wheatley was the first African American woman to publish a book of poems.
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Biography

Mary Lou Williams

One of the greatest jazz pianists, composers, and arrangers of all time, Mary Lou Williams was a swing and bebop icon.
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Biography

Serena Williams

Considered the greatest women’s tennis player of all time, and perhaps the greatest athlete of all time, Serena Williams has revolutionized women’s tennis since the 1990s.
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Biography

Brownie Wise

Brownie Wise was a self-made woman who revolutionized marketing tactics and had a knack for motivating others. She introduced the now popular household item, Tupperware, to the market.
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Biography

Alice Wong

Alice Wong is the founder and director of the Disability Visibility Project, an online community that fosters and amplifies disability media and culture.
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Biography

Anna May Wong

Appearing in over sixty movies throughout her career, Anna May Wong was the first Chinese American film star in Hollywood.
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Biography

Victoria Woodhull

The first woman to run for president and the first female stock broker on Wall Street, Victoria Woodhull achieved remarkable success in finance, journalism, and politics.
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Biography

Dr. Chien-Shiung Wu

Most known for her work on the top-secret Manhattan Project during World War II and her Cobalt-60 experiment that contested the law of conservation of parity, Dr. Chien-Shiung Wu’s pioneering work is regarded as a standard among physicists today.
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Biography

Janet Yellen

Dr. Janet Yellen, confirmed in January 2021 as the first female Treasury Secretary of the United States, is no stranger to breaking glass ceilings.
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