Women Who Broke Barriers Every Year Since 1950

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2010: Kathryn Bigelow
> Category: Entertainment

Kathryn Bigelow became the first woman to win an Oscar for Best Director, winning for the film “The Hurt Locker.”

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2011: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee, Tawakkul Karman
> Category: Activism

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee, and Tawakkul Karman shared the Nobel Peace Prize for furthering women’s rights in Liberia. Sirleaf was the first woman elected to lead an African nation.

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2012: Shannon Eastin
> Category: Sports

Shannon Eastin made sports history by becoming the fIrst female NFL referee when she worked as a line judge for the game between the Green Bay Packers and the San Diego Chargers.

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2013: Mary Barra
> Category: Business

Mary Barra broke up the boys club in the automotive industry when she was named CEO of General Motors, the first woman to lead a major American automobile company.

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2014: Mo’ne Davis
> Category: Sports

Mo’ne Davis from Philadelphia became the first girl to pitch her team to a victory in the Little League World Series at Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Today, she plays basketball.

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2015: Jennifer Welter
> Category: Sports

Jennifer Welter became the first woman coach in the NFL, when the Arizona Cardinals chose her to work with the team’s linebackers.

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2016: Hillary Clinton
> Category: Politics

Hillary Clinton became the first woman to gain the presidential nomination of a major political party in the United States.

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2017: Patty Jenkins
> Category: Entertainment

Patty Jenkins became the first female director to helm a full-length super hero action film when she directed the movie “Wonder Woman.”

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2018: Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib
> Category: Politics

Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib were the first Muslim women elected to Congress. They were elected to represent congressional districts in Minnesota and Michigan, respectively.

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2019: Ali Stroker
> Category: Entertainment

Actress Ali Stroker became the first wheelchair user, man or woman, to win a Tony Award for Featured Actress in a Musical. She won for her performance in “Oklahoma.”