Women’s Words to Lead By

March 21, 2016

 

Women have been leaders throughout history, yet they still struggle when it comes to being represented and recognized equally to men.

Women make up about 50 percent of the U.S. workforce but only 5 percent of chief executive officers at Standard and Poor’s 500 index companies and only 26 percent of college and university presidents. For women of color, the numbers are even more dismal: Fewer than 3 percent of board directors at Fortune 500 companies are black, Hispanic, or Asian. In politics, women represent 19 percent of the U.S. Congress and a smaller fraction of governors. With these numbers, it’s no wonder that advice and criticism on the gender gap in leadership continue to resonate.

During Women’s History Month and all year long, take heart from these words from some great women leaders. And once you’re fired up, share your favorites using #leadHERship!

Michelle Obama standing next to a quotation "As women, we must stand up for ourselves ... for each other ... for justice for all."

“As women, we must stand up for ourselves … for each other … for justice for all.” ― Michelle Obama, first lady of the United States twitter-bird-16x16


Geraldine Ferraro quote: "Some leaders are born women."

“Some leaders are born women.” ― Geraldine Ferraro, first female U.S. vice-presidential candidate representing a major political party twitter-bird-16x16



“Women have been trained to speak softly and carry a lipstick. Those days are over.” ― Bella Abzug, U.S. representative, leader in women’s rights and peace movements

“I am endlessly fascinated that playing football is considered a training ground for leadership, but raising children isn’t.” ― Dee Dee Myers, former White House press secretary


Audre Lorde quote: "When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid."

“When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.” – Audre Lorde, feminist and activist twitter-bird-16x16


“When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.” – Helen Keller, author and social activist

“I hope you will find some way to break the rules and make a little trouble out there, and I hope that you will choose to make some of that trouble on behalf of women.” ― Nora Ephron, author, director


Faye Wattleton quote: "The only safe ship in a storm is leadership."

“The only safe ship in a storm is leadership.” ― Faye Wattleton, first African American and the youngest president ever elected to Planned Parenthood twitter-bird-16x16


“Any woman who understands the problems of running a home will be nearer to understanding the problems of running a country.” ― Margaret Thatcher, former prime minister of Britain


A photo of Malala smiling next to a quotation "If one man can destroy everyting, why can't one girl change it?"

“If one man … can destroy everything, why can’t one girl change it?” ― Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani activist for women’s education and youngest-ever Nobel Prize laureate twitter-bird-16x16


“I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels.” — Maya Angelou, writer, civil rights activist

“There is no royal flower-strewn path to success. And if there is, I have not found it, for if I have accomplished anything in life it is because I have been willing to work hard.” — Madam C.J. Walker, American entrepreneur, philanthropist, and political and social activist



Elizabeth Blackwell quote: "None of us can know what we are capable of until we are tested."

“None of us can know what we are capable of until we are tested.” ― Elizabeth Blackwell, first woman to receive a medical degree in the United States twitter-bird-16x16


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