A Tribute to National Women’s Month

Originally lasting only a week, the Santa Rosa, California tradition has developed into National Women’s History Month. The month is meant to recognize and appreciate the strong, influential women in history. In honor of the event The Lodi Rampage has compiled a list of 16 women who, in no particular order, have brought great strides to the feminist movement.


Jane Austen (1775-1817)   

Jane Austen was a renowned author who not only broke expectations in literature, but also was a strong women’s activist. Austin’s novels, such as  Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility, were published completely anonymously, since women at the time were very suppressed in the literature realm. Despite these social drawbacks, Jane Austen made herself an extremely accomplished writer who pushed societal norms to advance women’s placement in the world.

Maya Angelou (1928-2014)

Maya Angelou used her writing abilities to discuss issues of economic, racial, gender, and sexual oppression. Her extremely established autobiography, Why The Caged Birds Sing, won Angelou the 2013 Literarian Award. She also was also granted the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2010 by President Barack Obama for her countless work and contributions to civil rights and women’s rights. Maya Angelou made groundbreaking changes for women through her efforts in literature, police, and social reforms.

Catherine the Great (1729 – 1796)

Catherine the Great  was unarguably one of the most influential and powerful rulers of history. Catherine expanded the Russian empire into Crimea, Belarus, and Lithuania. She also added three partitions of Poland to Russia through agreements with Prussia. She also had a contributing hand in modernizing Russian from old laws. Beyond her political impact, she also frequently socialized with some of the most influential minds at the time. She proudly supported literature, the arts, and even education. Catherine the Great spearheaded what it meant to be a powerful woman in politics. 

Sojourner Truth (1797-1883)

Sojourner Truth made her name through abolition, temperance, civil, and women’s rights in the nineteenth century. She learned how to read and write, and used these skills to give speeches about slavery and a women’s role in life. Her most popularized speech, “Ain’t I  Woman,” talks about racial and gender inequality at the time. Her words caused a lot of heads to turn, further establishing her role in a progressive future. 

Malala Yousafzai (1997- )

Malala Yousafzai has made great sacrifices to speak out on women’s education in oppressed countries. In 2012, she suffered a great trauma as a consequence of her decision to speak out on girl’s education. Despite this, she continued to make sure that she helps girls get a future they decide. The Malala Fund is a charity that helps raise money and awareness for education systems in countries that don’t typically support these motives. As a reward for all of her dedication, she won the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize, making her the youngest person to ever receive the award. 

Marie Curie (1867-1934)

Marie Curie was extremely well established and accomplished in the scientific field. She not only perfected her craft in both Physics and Chemistry, but she also received multiple awards for each field. Her first Nobel Prize was awarded for her work on radioactivity, making her the first woman to ever win a Nobel Prize. She later received her second Nobel Prize in chemistry, making her the first ever person to ever receive the award in two different fields. 

Ada Lovelace (1815-1852)

Ada Lovelace, despite the time, has been deemed the first computer programmer. She was an English mathematician who dedicated countless hours to developing the programming needed to make the first computer. Her coding, named after her, has been developed into early computer programming. It was also used years later in the building of the first ever computer. Most honorably, she is known for her one of the kind work with Charles Babbage’s Analytical Engine -a  mechanical general purpose computer. 

Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815- 1902)

Elizabeth Cady Stanton was a woman of many trades. She was an author, lecturer, and a primary philosopher of the women’s rights movement. In 1851, she met Susan B. Anthony and together they worked on women empowering efforts like speeches, articles, and books. Their efforts together dominated the women’s suffrage movement for over half a century. Stanton wrote three volumes of the History of Women’s Suffrage alongside Susan B. Anthony and Matilda Joslyn Gage. Beyond advocating for the women’s right to vote, she also was a proud supporter for liberalizing divorce laws and reproductive rights for women. Elizabeth Cady Stanton made triumphant contributions to women’s rights, creating lasting effects for women suffrage. 

Augusta Savage (1892-1962)

Augusta Savage was a well established sculptor, art teacher, and community art program during the Harlem Renaissance. Her sculpture of a group of figures won her the West Palm Beach County Fair award and ribbon of honor. She also attended Cooper Union School of Art, an accomplishment all of itself. In 1934 she was the first African American member of the National Association of Women Painters and Sculptors, making major headway for both women and African Americans. She was also one of the first sculptures who consistently dealt with black physiognomy. In her community, she taught young black artists at the Savage Studio of Arts and Crafts. Savage not only gave back to her community but she made major progress for strong black females in the art world. 

Taylor Swift (1989- )

Taylor Swift has made remarkable accomplishments not only in her career but as a feminist and LGBTQ+ ally. In her music career she has been the first person to release four consecutive albums that each sold one million copies in their debut weeks. She also was the first artist to have all songs from the same album on the top 100 Billboard charts. She holds 113 entries on the charts, making her the female with the most entries. Beyond her accomplishments  in music, she has also spoken out on sexist issues and LGBTQ+ oppression. Beyond this she also sued a former radio host for sexual assault. Despite winning the case, she only made the case worth a symbolic $1, proving that the issue runs deeper than it should. She also donated $113,000 to an advocacy group working together to bring light to LGBTQ+ social injustices. Alongside these contributions, she donated an undisclosed amount to the March for Our lives, which was organized by survivors of the Parkland shooting. Taylor Swift has broken records in the music industry and used her platform to bring to light important social issues.

Angelina Jolie (1975- )

Angelina Jolie has made incredible accomplishments in her acting career, but even more so, she has made noble contributions in third world countries. She has worked with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees for almost two decades. Through this organization, she has been able to travel to Lebanon, Iraqis Kurdistan, Thailand, Columbia and Venezuela. In these countries she has been able to help refugee children and civilians living in exile. In her personal life, she has adopted refugee children and now has three adopted children. 

Emma Watson (1990- )

Emma Watson, although an established actress, is also well known for her role as UN Women Goodwill Ambassador. Through this organization she has promoted gender equality during the HeForShe campaign. She also promoted girls’ education in areas like Bangladesh and Zambia. She also worked for recognition in trade and organic clothing in underdeveloped countries. This service granted her the ambassador position for Camfed International. Although Emma Watson has broken countless records as an actress, her humanitarian work truly illuminates her status as an influential woman. 

Billie Jean King (1943- )

Billie Jean King has made major headway in social justice, especially in the sports realm. She launched the Billie Jean King Leadership Initiative which addresses diversity issues within the athletic workplace. She also spoke out on gender equality issues in the National Football League and FIFA. Most notably, she founded the Women’s Sports Foundation that openly speaks out on gender equality issues within sports and the actions needed to fix these issues. She was also granted the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Obama. Beyond her organizational work, her work in tennis is renowned. She received 39 Grand Slam titles in her career and defeated Bobby Riggs in the 1973 Battle of the Sexes.  

Ellen Degeneres (1958- )

Ellen Degeneres is no stranger to humanitarian work. She has donated to over 50 charities, and beyond this, she has openly advertised for different charities through her platforms. On her talk show she openly supported the Cure campaign, in accordance to Breast Cancer Awareness month. Alongside Ben Affleck, she launched the Small Change Campaign that was used to support the Feeding America campaign. These are just a few examples of how Ellen Degeneres has made her mark as a humanitarian. Some of the topics she has supported include: adoption, fostering, civil rights, LGBTQ support, creative arts, human rights, and many more. Some of the topics she has spoken out against include abuse, slavery & human trafficking, and disadvantaged youth.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (1989- )

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, also known by her nickname AOC, grew up in the working class but despite this, she worked her way into Congress. Throughout her political life she has worked as an Educational Director with the National Hispanic Institute where she helped DREAMers and undocumented students prepare for college. She also enacted headway on her Green New Deal- a program meant to save the health of the Earth. Furthermore, she was a key speaker at the 2019 Women’s March. These were just some of many examples on how AOC has advocated for social, racial, economic, and even environmental justice.