This is the 100th International Women’s Day! For this special day, I came up with a list of 8 women who have inspired me:
- My mother, Louise, of course! She’s been a great role model throughout my life. She taught me how to stand on my own 2 feet, think for myself, and stay organized. I also continue to learn a lot about love and life from her.
- Sojourner Truth — Born into slavery as Isabella Baumfree, she changed her name (what a great name!) after Emancipation and began speaking about women’s suffrage. Her most famous speech, “Ain’t I a Woman?” is one of the most powerful oratories I’ve ever heard. Here’s a fantastic YouTube video of Alice Walker reading “Ain’t I a Woman?”
- Women in the French Resistance (WWII) — Those brave women were part of a large collection of people who fought against the Nazi occupation of France. I have a particular affinity for these women because I am Jewish and my maternal grandfather was French.
- Oprah Winfrey — I’m inspired by so many of the stories she has given to the world and the journey she has shared with us.
- Ellen DeGeneres — I love how Ellen makes us laugh and think simultaneously.
- Paula Scher — Her graphic design concepts and solutions inspire me.
- Elizabeth Mowry — This pastel landscape painter’s palette and techniques captivate my imagination.
- Laura Riegelhaupt, my painting buddy — Sharing a learning path with a friend and growing as artists together is very special, but with Laura it was more than that. While living with breast cancer, Laura continued to be creative in whatever ways her body would allow. She would knit or paint, even when the pain was excruciating. She was also one of the kindest and most gentle souls I’ve ever known. Sadly, she passed away last year, but I will forever be inspired by her creative drive.