The leadership and governance collection highlights those women who dared to lead or govern. These women may have led countries or industries. They may have governed organizations or companies. Because women have historically been excluded from positions of power, it is important to acknowledge those women who were able to achieve positions at the top. Although a glass ceiling still exists in most societies, these women give us hope that someday that ceiling will be destroyed and that top roles in a company, government, or institution will fairly represent the half of the population comprised of women.

Collection Items

Female pharaoh who led Egypt into a time of peace and economic prosperity

Benazir Bhutto
First woman of an Islamic country to serve as Prime Minister

Eleanor Roosevelt
Ambassador and reformer, she advocated greater rights for women and minorities

Frances Perkins
First woman to be appointed to the US Cabinet--as the Secretary of Labor, no less, in a time when wage work was considered outside woman's sphere

Hillary Rodham Clinton
First woman to be nominated by a major political party for the position of President of the United States of America. Former Secretary of State, former New York Senator, and life-long activist who continually challenges gender norms in US society and…

Madam C.J. Walker
African-American woman who started a successful beauty company and encouraged US citizens to see black women as beautiful

Sandra Day O'Connor
First woman appointed to the United States Supreme Court

Shirley Chisholm
First black female member of the House of Representatives and first black female
candidate to run for a major party's nomination for President of the United States
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