March is Women’s History Month, celebrating economic, political, and social contributions of women.
The 2023 Women’s History Month theme is Celebrating Women Who Tell Our Stories. Read about women below who greatly impacted our world and inspired many.
Dr. Keren Brown Wilson is known as the creator of assisted living, opening the first community in 1988. She founded the Jessie F Richardson Foundation in 2001, which improves access to elder care services in Oregon. She also started AGE+, a non-profit that helps seniors in rural Oregon with their housing and care needs.
Irena Sendler, Polish nurse and social worker, rescued thousands of Jewish children from Warsaw during the Holocaust. She joined the Council for Aid to Jews (Zegota) and was later appointed director of Zegota’s Department for the Care of Jewish Children.
Judith Heumann is a lifelong disability rights advocate. She advocates for accessibility and rights through her books Being Heumann and Rolling Warrior and her podcast The Heumann Perspective. Judith contracted polio at age 2 and has used a wheelchair ever since. At age 5, her school deemed her a “fire hazard” and wouldn’t let her attend, igniting her passion in advocating for accessibility. Learn more at JudithHeumann.com.
Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell, MD, was the first woman in the United States to earn a medical degree. In 1857, she opened the New York Infirmary for Women and Children with a mission to provide positions for women physicians.
Dr. Jane Cooke Wright, MD, was the first woman to be elected president of the New York Cancer Society. She was appointed to the President’s Commission on Heart Disease, Cancer, and Stroke as she dedicated her life’s work to cancer research. Her research pioneered new cancer treatment techniques that have impacted treatments available today.
Dr. Antonia Novello, MD, was the first woman and first Hispanic to serve as surgeon general of the United States. Dr. Novello served in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps for many years, working with the National Institute of Arthritis, Metabolism and Digestive Disorders. She later became deputy director of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, focusing on pediatric AIDS.
Celebrate Women’s History Month with us! Follow Arete Living on social media through the month to hear stories from incredible women throughout our organization.