Women have shaped history since Eve first stated her opinion back in the Garden, but it’s only in recent generations that we’ve acknowledged the impact of the work extraordinary women have done. Women’s History Month which was initiated in 1981 came into its own in 1995 when President Bill Clinton decreed to take it from a week in March to a full month. After all, there are a multitude of women to honor and even more taking a place in history as we speak.
This year’s theme is women’s empowerment and from crusaders like Susan B. Anthony seeking to bring women the right to vote and Rosa Parks, crusading for racial equality, the battles still rage. As Susan B. Anthony stated, “Men, their rights, and nothing more; women, their rights, and nothing less,” and women and many men as well, are still working to close the gender gaps.
The female pioneers in every walk of life have made an incredible difference and though there are too many to list, it’s worth noting that women have been visionaries in every arena from the arts, to politics, to religion, to education. From a jazz singer like Ella Fitzgerald, to an entrepreneur like Mary Kay, to New York State Senator Hillary Clinton, we know that women have been learning to fly. Amelia Earhart, one of the first female aviators said, “I want to do it because I want to do it. Women must try to do things as men have tried. When they fail, their failure must be but a challenge to others.” Women strive to be empowered to be their best and to do what they believe is theirs to do by choice or by calling and to lead the way for generations that follow.
With Margaret Mead, renowned anthropologist, and Eleanor Roosevelt, first lady and visionary, who challenged us to do the thing we don’t believe we can do, to Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Conner and countless others, women are stepping forward to fully contribute to the development of our culture. Women own the majority of new businesses today and are sought-after and honorable agents of change in all areas of life. Women are creating new paths in the arts and literature, in science and politics, in religion, and in education and medicine. Women’s History Month celebrates the causes of women, the rights of women, the empowerment of women, the contribution of women, and the beauty of women for all they bring to create a better world. As Pearl S. Buck said, “Men and women should own the world as a mutual possession.”
It is with enormous gratitude that we celebrate all women wherever they choose to make a difference.