June 25, 2017

Margaret Heafield Hamilton (née Heafield; born August 17, 1936) is an American computer scientist, systems engineer, and business owner. She was Director of the Software Engineering Division of the MIT Instrumentation Laboratory, which developed on-board flight software for the Apollo space program. In 1986, she became the founder and CEO of Hamilton Technologies, Inc., in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The company was developed around the Universal Systems Language based on her paradigm of Development Before the Fact (DBTF) for systems and software design. Hamilton has published over 130 papers, proceedings, and reports about the 60 projects and six major programs in which she has been involved. On November 22, 2016, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by U.S. President Barack Obama for her work leading the development of on-board flight software for NASA's Apollo Moon missions.

Source: Wikipedia

June 24, 2017

Ethel L. Payne (August 14, 1911 – May 28, 1991) was an African-American journalist. Known as the "First Lady of the Black Press", she was a columnist, lecturer, and freelance writer. She combined advocacy with journalism as she reported on the Civil Rights Movement during the 1950s and 1960s, and was known for asking questions others dared not ask. She became the first female African-American commentator employed by a national network when CBS hired her in 1972. In addition to her reporting of American domestic politics, she also covered international stories. 

Source: Wikipedia

June 23, 2017

Annie Lumpkins was one of the Freedom Riders of the early 1960s, who travelled through the South, risking extreme violence by the KKK and law enforcement, to promote civil rights and racial equality. Lumpkins was arrested for sitting in a “whites only” section.

Source: Facebook

June 22, 2017

Marina Ginestà i Coloma (29 January 1919 – 6 January 2014) was a French-born Catalan veteran of the Spanish Civil War, who was a member of the Unified Socialist Youth. She became famous due to the photo taken by Juan Guzmán on the rooftop of Plaça de Catalunya 9, 08002 Barcelona, Spain, Barcelona during the July 1936 military uprising in Barcelona. It is one of the most iconic photographs of the Spanish Civil War.  Ginestà was born in Toulouse, on January 29 1919, into a working-class reinvidicative leftist family that had emigrated to France from Spain. Her parents were both tailors: Empar (Amparo) Coloma Chalmeta, from Valencia, and Bruno Ginestà Manubens, from Manresa. She moved to Barcelona with her parents at the age of 11. Ginestà later joined the Unified Socialist Party of Catalonia. As the war broke out, she served as a reporter and a translator assisting Mikhail Koltsov, a correspondent of the Soviet newspaper Pravda. Before the end of the war, Ginestà was wounded and evacuated to Montpellier. As France was occupied by the Nazis, she fled to the Dominican Republic where she married. In 1946 she was forced to leave the country because of the persecution of dictator Rafael Trujillo. In 1952 Ginestà married a Belgian diplomat and returned to Barcelona. She moved to Paris in the early 1970s. Marina Ginestà died there at the age of 94 in January 2014. 

Source; Wikipedia

June 21, 2017

Martha Gelhorn is a continued inspiration for female journalists, having worked as a war reporter. She first reported in the Spanish Civil War, as she accompanied Ernest Hemingway to Spain, and continued her career after their marriage. Her writing focused on the effects of war on ordinary citizens and when she encountered barriers due to her gender, she made her own path. For instance, asking for an assignment during WWII after years of war reporting, she was told that she would not be accredited because female reporters were not allowed in war zones. Instead, she set sail around the Caribbean to see how the war was affecting people there. Later, in 1943, when female reporters could finally get accredited—though not to the frontlines—she reported on the activities of female military personnel.

Source: Babble

June 20, 2017

Aphra Behn (14 December 1640–16 April 1689) was a British playwright, poet, translator and fiction writer from the Restoration era. As one of the first English women to earn her living by her writing, she broke cultural barriers and served as a literary role model for later generations of women authors. Rising from obscurity, she came to the notice of Charles II, who employed her as a spy in Antwerp. Upon her return to London and a probable brief stay in debtors' prison, she began writing for the stage. She belonged to a coterie of poets and famous libertines such as John Wilmot, Lord Rochester. She wrote under the pastoral pseudonym Astrea. During the turbulent political times of the Exclusion Crisis, she wrote an epilogue and prologue that brought her into legal trouble; she thereafter devoted most of her writing to prose genres and translations. A staunch supporter of the Stuart line, she declined an invitation from Bishop Burnet to write a welcoming poem to the new king William III. She died shortly after. She is famously remembered in Virginia Woolf's A Room of One's Own: "All women together ought to let flowers fall upon the tomb of Aphra Behn which is, most scandalously but rather appropriately, in Westminster Abbey, for it was she who earned them the right to speak their minds." Her grave is not included in the Poets' Corner but lies in the East Cloister near the steps to the church.

Source: Wikipedia

June 19, 2017

Tomoe Gozen, a 12th century warrior woman who slashed her way to samurai stardom, leaving severed heads and several manga series in her wake. She (c. 1157 – 1247) was a late twelfth-century female samurai warrior (onna-bugeisha), known for her bravery and strength.She fought with Minamoto no Yoshinaka in the Genpei War. She was known as an excellent archer and horseback rider, and was frequently sent to the front lines to make use of her gifts.

Source: eBaum's World

June 18, 2017

Moolam Thirunal Sethu Parvathi Bayi (1896-1983), better known as Amma Maharni, was the Junior Maharani (Queen) of Travancore as well as a promoter of Indian Classical music. She was the mother of Chithira Thirunal Balarama Varma, the last King of Travancore. Sethu Parvathi Bayi was distantly related by birth to the royal house of Travancore in the direct female line. In 1900, following the absence of heirs in the Travancore Royal Family she, along with her elder maternal cousin Sethu Lakshmi Bayi, was adopted by her maternal great-aunt, Senior Maharani Lakshmi Bayi. At the age of five, she became the Junior Maharani of Travancore. Sethu Parvathi Bayi chose Sri Pooram Nal Ravi Varma Thampuran of the Kilimanoor Palace as her consort owing to his high educational achievements. Their wedding took place in 1907. In 1912, after giving birth to the Heir-Apparent Sree Chithira Thirunal at the age of fifteen, she became the Amma (mother) Maharani (queen), or the Queen Mother of Travancore. Sethu Parvathi Bayi was an accomplished veena (stringed instrument) player, and a famous promoter of Carnatic Music and other arts. She played a major role in bringing to light the compositions of her ancestor Maharajah Swathi Thirunal Rama Varma of Travancore. 
Pooradam Thirunal Sethu Lakshmi Bayi CI (1895–1985) was the regent of the Kingdom of Travancore in southern India between 1924 and 1931. She, along with her younger cousin, Moolam Thirunal Sethu Parvathi Bayi, were adopted into the Travancore Royal Family and were the granddaughters of the celebrated painter, Raja Ravi Varma. In 1924, Maharajah Moolam Thirunal died and his grand nephew and the heir to the throne, Sree Chithira Thirunal, was just 12 years old then. A regency became necessary, since the Maharajah was still a minor. Since Travancore royal family followed the matrilineal system, Sethu Lakshmi Bayi was the head of the family. It was decided, despite the opposition of the minor Maharajah's mother, Junior Maharani Sethu Parvathi Bayi, that Sethu Lakshmi Bayi should be Regent as she was the Senior Maharani until the minor King came of age in 1930. It is to be noted that she was an absolute monarch in her own right as per matrilineal law  and ruled as the sovereign. Sethu Lakshmi Bayi's regency continued the progressive administration of Travancore Dynasty and brought forth reforms like abolition of Devadasi system as well as the prohibition of animal sacrifice. Her meeting with Mahatma Gandhi resulted in a royal proclamation by which all the public roads (except the eastern road) to Vaikom Mahadeva Temple were opened to all castes. She also amended the Travancore Nayar Act in relation to the Marumakkathayam system of inheritance and family.  

Source: Wikipedia

June 17, 2017

Thordis Elva is an author, a playwright, a screen-writer, an entrepreneur and a motivational speaker. Her recent book, "South of Forgiveness" is a non-fiction narrative that talks about the story of how she was raped at the age of 16 by her first boyfriend, Tom Stranger, who co-authored the book with her. Following a TED Talk with Tom in October 2016, Thordis has, since, addressed worldwide audiences through her book and a Q&A that offers up answers about her story, the crafting of their talk and why the two of them do not prescribe their actions as a path for others to follow. 

June 16, 2017

Mary Stevenson Cassatt (May 22, 1844 – June 14, 1926) was an American painter and printmaker. She was born in Pennsylvania, but lived much of her adult life in France, where she first befriended Edgar Degas and later exhibited among the Impressionists. Cassatt often created images of the social and private lives of women, with particular emphasis on the intimate bonds between mothers and children. She was described by Gustave Geffroy in 1894 as one of "les trois grandes dames" of Impressionism alongside Marie Bracquemond and Berthe Morisot.

Source: Wikipedia

June 15, 2017

Susan Abulhawa (June 3, 1970) is a Palestinian American writer and human rights activist. She is the author of a bestselling novel, Mornings in Jenin (2010) and the founder of a non-governmental organization, Playgrounds for Palestine.  She lives in Yardley, Pennsylvania. Her second novel, The Blue Between Sky And Water, was sold in 19 languages before its release. It was published in the UK on June 4, 2015, and in the US on September 1, 2015. Abulhawa's parents, born in At-Tur in Jerusalem, were refugees of the 1967 war. Her father, according to one account, “was expelled at gunpoint; her mother, who was studying in Germany at the time, was unable to return and the couple reunited in Jordan before moving to Kuwait, where Abulhawa was born in 1970.” Since her parents did not remain together for long, and the family was dismantled following the war, Susan was sent to live with an uncle in the U.S., where she stayed until she was five years old. She was then “passed between various family members in Kuwait and Jordan; at 10, she was taken to Jerusalem but ended up in an orphanage.” At age 13, she was sent to Charlotte, North Carolina, where she was a foster child. She has been in the US since. She majored in Biology in college and attended USC School of Medicine as a graduate student in the Department of Biomedical Science, where she completed a master's degree in Neuroscience. She later turned to journalism and fiction. She has contributed to several anthologies and has been published in major and minor US and international newspapers and other periodicals. Mornings in Jenin (originally published in 2006 as The Scar of David) was her debut novel. It is an international bestseller, published in at least 26 languages. In 2013, Abulhawa published a collection of poetry entitled "My Voice Sought The Wind" and it has been announced that she completed and sold her second novel manuscript. Abulhawa is the founder of Playgrounds for Palestine, an NGO that advocates for Palestinian children by building playgrounds in Palestine and UN refugee camps in Lebanon. The first playground was erected in early 2002.

Source: Wikipedia

June 14, 2017

Dr. Erna Schneider Hoover (born June 19, 1926) is an American mathematician notable for inventing a computerized telephone switching method which "revolutionized modern communication" according to several reports. It prevented system overloads by monitoring call center traffic and prioritizing tasks on phone switching systems to enable more robust service during peak calling times. At Bell Laboratories where she worked for over 32 years, Hoover was described as an important pioneer for women in the field of computer technology.

Source: Wikipedia

June 13, 2017
Esther Victoria Abraham, better known by her stage name, Pramila, was an Indian model, actress and first woman film producer in the Hindi Film Industry. She is also well known for winning the first Miss India Pageant in 1947. 
Source: Wikipedia

June 12, 2017

Emily Elizabeth Dickinson (December 10, 1830 – May 15, 1886) was an American poet. Dickinson was born in Amherst, Massachusetts. Although part of a prominent family with strong ties to its community, Dickinson lived much of her life in reclusive isolation. After studying at the Amherst Academy for seven years in her youth, she briefly attended the Mount Holyoke Female Seminary before returning to her family's house in Amherst. Considered an eccentric by locals, she developed a noted penchant for white clothing and became known for her reluctance to greet guests or, later in life, to even leave her bedroom. Dickinson never married, and most friendships between her and others depended entirely upon correspondence. Dickinson was a recluse for the later years of her life.

Source: Wikipedia

June 11, 2017

Hypatia (born c. 350–370; died 415), often called Hypatia of Alexandria, was a Greek mathematician, astronomer, and philosopher in Egypt, then a part of the Eastern Roman Empire. She was the head of the Neoplatonic school at Alexandria, where she taught philosophy and astronomy. According to contemporary sources, Hypatia was murdered by a Christian mob or by Christian zealots known as Parabalani after being accused of exacerbating a conflict between two prominent figures in Alexandria, the governor, Orestes, and the bishop, Cyril of Alexandria. Hypatia has been considered a universal genius, as described in MacDonald and Weldon's history of civilization.

Source: Wikipedia

June 10, 2017

Sarala Devi Chaudhurani also known as the Great Shakti, (9 September 1872 – 18 August 1945) was the founder of the first women's organisation in India, the Bharat Stree Mahamandal in Allahabad in 1910. One of the primary goals of the organization was to promote female education, which at that time was not well developed. The organization opened several offices in Lahore (then part of undivided India), Allahabad, Delhi, Karachi, Amritsar, Hyderabad, Kanpur, Bankura, Hazaribagh, Midnapur and Kolkata (formerly Calcutta) to improve the situation of women all over India.

Source: Wikipedia

June 9, 2017 
Chien-Shiung Wu (May 31, 1912 – February 16, 1997) was a Chinese-American experimental physicist who made significant contributions in the field of nuclear physics. Wu worked on the Manhattan Project, where she helped develop the process for separating uranium metal into uranium-235 and uranium-238 isotopes by gaseous diffusion. She is best known for conducting the Wu experiment, which contradicted the hypothetical law of conservation of parity. This discovery resulted in her colleagues Tsung-Dao Lee and Chen-Ning Yang winning the 1957 Nobel Prize in physics, and also earned Wu the inaugural Wolf Prize in Physics in 1978. Her expertise in experimental physics evoked comparisons to Marie Curie. Her nicknames include "the First Lady of Physics", "the Chinese Madame Curie", and the "Queen of Nuclear Research". 

Source: Wikipedia

June 8, 2017

Mary Golda Ross (August 9, 1908 – April 29, 2008) was the first Native American female engineer. She was one of the 40 founding engineers of the Skunk Works, and was known for her work at Lockheed Martin on "preliminary design concepts for interplanetary space travel, manned and unmanned earth-orbiting flights, the earliest studies of orbiting satellites for both defense and civilian purposes." 

Source: Wikipedia