Kenner (1912-2006) was an African-American
inventor. She developed the sanitary belt, an early menstrual product that was
patented only thirty years later due to racial discrimination.
Along with her sister Mildred, she invented and
obtained patents for five household and personal care items. However, she
obtained the patents much later than the invention, simply because the company
that was interested in her creations rejected them when they discovered her
Fleming (1857-1911) was a Scottish astronomer. She
catalogued thousand of stars and other phenomena throughout her career, and
discovered the Horsehead Nebula in 1888.
She started out as the maid of Edward Charles
Pickering, the director of the Harvard College Observatory; soon, he recognised
her talent and intelligence, and hired her to do administrative work. She
eventually founded and coordinated the Harvard Computers, an all-female group
of human computers working for the observatory. She discovered the first white
dwarf star, over 300 variable stars and 10 novae, among others.
Olander (1861-1943) was a Swedish teacher and
politician. She was also a strong proponent of women’s suffrage in her country.
She worked as a teacher in several Swedish
cities and also served as the chairperson of the Falun branch of the National
Association for Women’s Suffrage. She was a board member of the public
libraries in the same city, and in 1910 was elected as one of its first female
councillors. She is also known for her close friendship with the writer Selma
Ferrín Moreiras (1914-2009) was a Spanish mathematician and astronomer. She was the first female
astronomer from her native region of Galicia.
She studied Physics and Chemistry in Santiago de
Compostela, and later started working in the Astronomical Observatory in the
city. She obtained her doctorate in Madrid in 1963, when she became the first
woman in Spain to defend a thesis in the field of astronomy.
Mammadbeyova (1922-2006) was a notable Azerbaijani scientist. She
was the first female forensic medical expert and the first female chief
pathologist in her country.
She was the director of the
pathological laboratory at the Research Institute for Clinical and Experimental
Medicine in Baku, a position she held for four decades. She was also the first
female professor of pathology in Azerbaijan.
Anne Ormerod (1828-1901) was an English entomologist, considered a pioneer in the
field of studying insects. She was the first to define the field of
She had an avid interest in insects from childhood, and contributed a
great number of insect specimens to the Royal Horicultural Society collections.
She was later appointed consulting entomologist for the Royal Agricultural
Society and lecturer at the Royal Agricultural College. In 1878 she became the
first female fellow of the Meteorological Society.
Gabriela Montero (b. 1970) is a Venezuelan pianist. She is best known for her skilful improvisations on complex musical
She began playing from a very young age and
gave her first public performance at the age of five. At the age of nine, she
was awarded a government scholarship to study in the USA, and later attended
the Royal Academy of Music in London. In 2009, she played at the inauguration
of President Barack Obama.
Scott (1928-2012) was a Canadian figure skater, known for her many feats in
international events. She was a Canadian national champion four times, World champion
twice, and the Olympic champion in 1948.
She started ice skating at the age of seven
and won her first national junior title at eleven. She is the first and the
only Canadian to win the gold medal for ladies’ single figure skating.
Michaels (1939-2017) was a feminist and civil
rights activist during the 1950s and 1960s. She was responsible for popularising
the form of address Ms. as a way to refer to women without taking into account
their marital status.
She started her activism by working for the
Congress of Racial Equality in New York. She first introduced the idea of using
the term Ms. in 1961, and eventually caught the attention of Gloria Steinem,
who named her feminist magazine after it.