Women who lead their fields and advance women’s rights deserve a place on this list. But we also need to remember that gender is not a barrier to leadership. We can all develop the skills necessary to be effective leaders. At THNK, we’re passionate about building inclusive cultures.
Australian born Sadaf Monajemi is a pioneer in the world of medical technology. Despite being a woman, she has successfully launched a startup company that helps doctors predict strokes. Her work has been recognized by Forbes and other media. She also holds a PhD in machine learning and artificial intelligence for medical applications.
Sadaf is the co-founder of See-Mode Technologies, a company that enables doctors to predict strokes using computational models and deep learning. She completed her PhD at the National University of Singapore where she focused on machine learning. Today, Sadaf has a diverse team of 13 engineers, and her startup is making rapid progress in bringing the latest stroke research into hospitals.
In 1990, Vera Wang opened her first bridal store in New York City. The boutique sold other designers’ bridal gowns, and it was a hit. She then expanded her business to include eyewear and tuxedos. In addition, she started working in the movie industry, starring in such movies as Gossip Girl and Ugly Betty. Most recently, Vera Wang celebrated her 30th year in business.
Vera Wang is an inspirational role model. She has overcome adversity and has a great work ethic. Her achievements have been well documented and her influence is felt far beyond elite fashion circles. She has been featured in numerous celebrity weddings and her bridal gowns are praised for their ethereal feel.
Tanni Grey-Thompson has a stellar record of achievement and is considered one of the world’s most influential public speakers. She is a former Olympic gold medallist, a double Paralympic champion and a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire. She has also served as a member of parliament, vice-president of the Women’s Sports Foundation and patron of the British Sports Trust. In 2003, she was named to the Stoke Mandeville Hall of Fame.
Born with spina bifida, Tanni Grey-Thompson became an international sporting icon and an inspiration for millions of people. She competed in five Paralympic Games and won 20 medals. Today, she is an advocate for equal rights for disabled people.
Despite living in a low-income family with very few role models, Oprah Winfrey has achieved success in so many ways. She has a profound understanding of women’s issues and desires, and she is often called the world’s most influential woman.
Oprah is also an entrepreneur, actor, and television personality. Her popular talk show has become one of the most popular and profitable talk shows ever. In addition to her huge success, she has also made it a point to give back to the world through her philanthropic efforts. Her Angel Network has raised more than $50 million for charitable organizations around the world.
Winfrey grew up in rural Mississippi, and moved to Tennessee when she was fourteen. While attending high school, she excelled in her studies and was offered a full-ride to Tennessee State University. After graduating from college, she pursued a career in the media. By the time she was twenty, she was a reporter and co-anchor on the local television station in Baltimore.
Melinda Gates is a former Microsoft executive who left her job in 1996 to pursue philanthropy and a family. Despite her high-powered career, she found it difficult to balance her family life with her work. Gates learned how to prioritize her time while raising her daughter, Jennifer. She was inspired by a nun at her Catholic school to pursue a career in programming. She received her double bachelor’s degree from Duke University and her MBA from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.
Gates is also a great advocate for women’s rights and has worked for gender equality worldwide. She has contributed billions of dollars to fight poverty and advance gender equality. She is the co-founder of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which has granted nearly $45.5 billion in grants to help fight global problems.