[There are a lot of pioneers on this list. But it’s better than not doing continuing with writing the entries at all.]
Britain’s first woman doctor. By gosh, when I first read her summary biography I was amazed by her sheer determination in the face of immense resistance. Her spark seems to have been ignited by meeting the first USA woman doctor, Elizabeth Blackwell.
She is here primarily as as she could not straight-forwardly become an MD, she took a longer more convoluted route that nevertheless accomplished her objective: to be an MD.
She couldn’t fully qualify as an MD in the UK so she studied French after becoming a licensed apothecary and coincidentally became the first woman MD in France after studying there. Becoming an accepted MD in the UK though was a lot harder. Read her biography for more details. It’s an interesting read.
First woman to pass the All Arms Commando Course – widely regarded as being one of the toughest in the world, if not the toughest.
She is here not just because she passed but because she failed not once but twice. But she dusted herself off and tried again and yet again and succeeded.
We all failed when we were babies. But eventually we got the idea, eating walking talking etc. As adults we tend to forget that.
First woman to win Academy Award for Best Director (2009) for the war movie The Hurt Locker.
First British woman to go to space. In fact first Briton to go into space beating off competition from lots of men (and a fair few women) to take part in the Juno project.
She showed that if you have set an objective and single-mindeded pursue it can be accomplished no matter how far out of reach it might be initially.
Of course it helps if one has luck, if we define luck as being when preparation meets opportunity. Note she had a PhD and a foreign language under her belt before she heard they were recruiting candidates for this Juno project.
I met her when she was doing a lecture tour soon after her mission. Pity she never got to go up again but she has done something most of us will never get to do!
Even people who hate her policies will usually grudgingly admit to admiring her: she wasn’t called The Iron Lady for nothing. Also she showed that a career change needn’t stop you being successful. She was a chemist, barrister, MP and first female British Prime Minister.
First female managing director of a premier league football club. Youngest director of a UK plc (at the time.) She knows the power of asking (and persuasion.) If you don’t ask, you don’t get.
Skid row single mother on Welfare to billionaire castle dwelling author of the Harry Potter books. How? Well determination to better the situation for her family, writing during the cold weather in cafes nursing (soft) drinks, not accepting the rejections from various publishers. She is self-made which shows how a dream coupled with drive can get you far.
First woman to be awarded the Nobel Prizes in both Physics (1903) and Chemistry (1911).
...of this goal but I don’t think I could limit it to just fifty. Anyway what is ‘an admirable woman’? Is it an intelligent one, a philanthropic one, a creative one, a caring one, one who triumphs over adversity? Perhaps we might include those who acquire wealth by any legal means.