Each year at our annual Touchstone Awards luncheon, we provide an activity to encourage guests to interact with each other and the summer camp girls at their table. This year, girls and guests learned about female champions, some well-known and others less recognizable. The pictures were designed as postcards, by Jen, our former AmeriCorps VISTA member, so that guests could send a note to a champion in their own life. Below is a sample of the twelve women we highlighted on the postcards.
Can you name the famous female champions in these photos? Answers and a brief description of their impactful work is included below!
1) Dolores Huerta, a Champion of Labor Rights
Dolores Huerta co-founded the National Farmworkers Association, which later became the United Farm Workers union. As a young elementary school teacher in southern California, she witnessed the low standard of living among children of farm workers and has dedicated the rest of her life to advocating for minimum wage, unemployment benefits, paid time off, and retirement benefits. Photo: Eric Guo
2) Gertrude Belle Elion, a Champion of Medicine
American pharmacologist Gertrude Belle Elion shared the 1988 Nobel Prize in Medicine for her work in the development of new drug treatments. Elion’s groundbreaking research led to the first treatment for leukemia, as well as the first immune-suppressive agent for organ transplants. Her innovative techniques were later used to develop AZT, an important drug used in the treatment of HIV/AIDS. Photo: Wellcome Foundation Read more about Gertrude and her work to reduce the STEM Gap!
3) Tawakkul Karman, Leymah Gbowee, and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Champions of Human Rights.
The 2011 Nobel Peace Prize was jointly awarded to Yemeni journalist and activist Tawakkul Karman, Liberian activist Leymah Gbowee, and Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for their work in advancing women’s rights and democracy. Photo: Harry Wad Read Jen’s thoughts after listening to Leymah speak at the University of Indianapolis this winter.
4) Wilma Rudolph, a Champion of Athletics
Olympic sprinter Wilma Rudolph overcame childhood polio to fulfill her dream. Considered the fastest woman in the world of her era, Rudolph became the first American woman to earn three gold medals in track and field during a single Olympic Games. Photo: Library of Congress
5) Wendy Kopp, a Champion of Education
Wendy Kopp is the Founder and CEO of Teach for America. She proposed the idea for the organization for her undergraduate thesis at Princeton University and has since helped to eliminate educational inequalities for millions of children. Photo: World Economic Forum
6) Georgia O’Keeffe, a Champion of the Arts
Georgia O’Keeffe broke through the art world’s gender barrier and became one of the most significant artists of American modernism. During a period when the majority of artists were working in Europe, O’Keeffe celebrated the American landscape in her extensive studies of the New Mexico desert. Photo: PD-US