We all know the power women have to change the world in dynamic ways. From Beyonce’s consistent advocacy for girls to Ursula Burns’ Corporate America boss moves to Michelle Obama’s grace and dynamic leadership in her own right, women continue to facilitate innovation across the globe.
Forbes has acknowledged the awesome achievements of women of color on their list, ‘The World’s Most Powerful Women in 2013,” which includes Beyonce, Obama and Burns along with other powerful women of color including media powerhouse Oprah Winfrey; Malawi president, Joyce Banda; World Food Programme executive director, Ertharin Cousin; CARE president and CEO, Helene Gayle; Liberia president, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf; Nigeria’s minister of finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala; Robert Wood Johnson Foundation CEO, Risa Lavizzo-Mourey; and Sam’s Club/Wal-Mart Stores CEO Rosalind Brewer.
All of these women have made notable achievements and strides in their respective industries, paving their own lanes while faces major challenges. Several are the first of color to hold such prestigious posts and have been able to take their organizations, countries and companies to the next level. Take note: Ursula Burns is the first African-American woman CEO to head a Fortune 500 company. Lavizzo-Mourey is the first woman and the first African-American to head the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, which has an endowment of more than $7 billion and distributes more than $400 million a year. Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf is the first elected female head of state in Africa, and Joyce Banda is Malawi’s first female president. And of course, last but not least, Obama serves as an inspiration to all young women of color as the premier First Lady of color in the White House, and Winfrey, the first black female billionaire in history.