The BBC has today revealed some of the inspirational individuals who have been chosen for inclusion on the BBC 100 Women list 2017.
This year, out of the sixty women listed, seven are African. The women from the continent on include:
Adelle Onyago – a radio and television host from Kenya seeking to empower young women through mentorship and apprenticeship programmes
Anita Nderu – a TV presenter and radio news anchor at Capital FM based in Nairobi, Kenya who is passionate about mentoring youth
Ellen Johnson – the 24th and current President of Liberia since 2006 and the first elected female head of state in Africa
Marieme Jamme – taught herself to read and write at the age of 16 and is now a self-made businesswoman in Senegal
Naomi Mwaura – a lead organiser of the anti-harassment protest #MyDressMyChoice, which changed the law around harassment inKenya
Talent Jumo – supports victims of revenge porn, giving them counselling and legal advice and fighting for sexual and reproductive health rights for women in Zimbabwe
Tiwa Savage – a Nigerian singer, songwriter and philanthropist Tiwa Savage is an intergral member of the Afrobeats scene and plans to open a music school
Taken from across all spheres of modern life – from engineering to the creative industries, from sport to business – they represent the global wealth of female talent. But in a new twist the list launched today is only part of the story.
The list has been inspired by the BBC 100 Women Challenge. New for 2017 this is a unique celebration of female talent which sees four teams of women tasked with finding solutions to everyday problems currently blighting female lives across the globe. From October 2nd – 6th women based in Silicon Valley will tackle the glass ceiling; from October 9th -13th the Delhi team are looking at female illiteracy; from October 16th -20th safety on public transport will be the focus for the London and Nairobi team; and finally from October 23rd -27th women in Rio will consider sexism in sport.
Today 60 women who are working or campaigning in these fields or who have inspired others through their actions are being celebrated.
- Astronaut Peggy Whitson (57) – Having made three trips to the International Space Station, Peggy has spent more time in space than any other United States astronaut.
- President of Chile Michelle Bachelet (65) – The first female to hold office in the history of her country.
- President of Liberia Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (78) – the 24th and current President of Liberia since 2006 and the first elected female head of state in Africa.
- Dancer, TV star and business owner Jin Xing (50) – Known as China’s answer to Oprah Winfrey, Jin Xing was the first transgender woman in China to receive government approval for gender reassignment.
- Footballer Steph Houghton (29) – Captain of Manchester City FC and the England women’s football team.
- Acid attack survivor Resham Khan (21) – UK student blogging about her recovery
- Harvard social psychologist and bestselling author Amy Cuddy (45) – known for her research on body language. She delivered the second most-viewed TED talk of all time.
- Politician and entrepreneur Susi Pudjiastuti (52) – A successful entrepreneur, Susi is also Indonesia’s Minister of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries.
- UK activist Liz Kelly (65) – active in the field of violence against women and children for 40 years, professor of sexualised violence at London Metropolitan University, where she is also director of the Child and Woman Abuse Studies Unit.
- Education entrepreneur Anne-Marie Imafidon (28) – CEO & ‘Head Stemette’ at Stemettes seeking to inspire the next generation of women to go into science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
- Canadian teacher Maggie MacDonnell (37) – winner of the US $1million Global Teacher Prize 2017.
- Singer-songwriter Tiwa Savage (37) – integral member of the Afrobeats scene and Nigerian philanthropist.
- Broadcaster and activist Adelle Onyango (28) – Kenyan radio and television host seeking to empower young women through mentorship and apprenticeship programmes.
- Author and poet Rupi Kaur (24) Canadian-Indian author and illustrator writes on themes including love, loss, trauma, healing and femininity.
- Cricketer Mithali Raj (34) – Captain of Indian Women’s Cricket Team
- Disability Rights Activist Virali Modi (25) – campaigning to make railways more accessible to disabled women in India.
- Comedian, model and disability rights campaigner Nawaal Akram (18) – founder of Muscular Dystrophy Middle East, and promotes rights for women with disabilities in the Middle East.
The remaining 40 places will then be decided as the challenge progresses, drawn from those who have supported, inspired and helped the teams on the ground over the course of the weeks. They might be someone working on a solution on the other side of the world; the woman who suggested the piece of code; the woman who named the campaign; or the woman who, by courageously sharing her story, inspired the solution.
The list of 60 women can be viewed here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-41380265.The complete list will then be revealed after the final challenge at the end of October.
As audience participation is a cornerstone of the challenge, there is opportunity for other inspiring women to be included. The teams will want to hear directly from women affected by the issues they are tackling and find out what solutions may have already been tried. Viewers and listeners will be able to get involved in via social media with @BBC100Women and #100Women, online at www.bbc.com/100women .