Glamour’s women of the year

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Yesterday, a guy friend of
mine mentioned that on Monday night, while serving as a seat-filler
near the VIP section at the Glamour Women of
the Year awards ceremony
,
he mooned over Eric Dane and stalked Ben Affleck a bit. I won’t share
what he had to say about the aforementioned gentlemen, but it did encourage
me a take a look at the women who were honored.

Now, for the record, I’ll tell
you that I’ve always kind of liked Glamour magazine, although
I have not read it recently. I remember, however, that when it used
to be one of my guilty-pleasure travel reads, they had features about
out lesbians surprisingly often. In general, the magazine seems to be willing to feature
strong women, and not just ones who exude traditional glamour.

The women
honored on Monday were praised, of course, for their individual accomplishments,
but they represent a range of opportunities, many of which are newly
open to women. Let’s take a look at a few of the honorees and admire
how cool they are. (You can explore the full list here.)

Toni Morrison
— “The Voice of Our
Time

Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison
has written some of the most haunting and powerful novels of the 20th century: The Bluest Eye, Beloved, Sula. She was
the only black child in her kindergarten class — and the only student
who entered kindergarten already knowing how to read. Throughout her
education, she read everything she could and noticed one glaring omission:

“What about young black
girls who had never been the center of anybody’s literary intention? … No one had written them yet, so I wrote them.”

The Female Heads of the
Ivy League
— “Heads of the Class

There are now four female presidents
of the Ivy League. Four. Count them. Four. It’s not that long ago that
women were not even permitted to attend these schools, much less
lead them. While women are still underrepresented in the sciences, elite
educational opportunities for women have opened up dramatically in the
past few decades, and Amy Gutmann, Drew Faust, Ruth
Simmons
and Shirley Tlghman exemplify the heights to
which young women can reasonably aspire. What’s more, they signal leadership
likely to be committed to preventing gender from being an obstacle to
achievement.

Lorena Ochoa — “The Champ

Lorena Ochoa, the top-ranked
woman golfer in the world, was the first woman both to play and to win
a tournament at the Old Course at St. Andrews. The
course was historically closed to women, but she has certainly broken
the barriers. Ochoa opened the Lorena Ochoa Foundation, which enables
240 children in her hometown of Guadalajara, Mexico to get an education,
and she’s opened two gold academies to make gold accessible to kids.
How much does she rock?

Nancy Pelosi

— “Madam Speaker

Regardless of how you feel
about Nancy Pelosi’s politics, she is the first woman to be second in line
for the presidency of the United States. Pelosi did not enter politics
until later in life and is now the highest ranking female politician
in the history of the United States. And that is amazing. As a former
San Francisco Bay Area resident, I love Bay Area women politicians
(Pelosi, Barbara Boxer, Diane Feinstein) and I’m pretty
excited to have one of them so close to running the whole show. But
even if she were a politician of a different stripe, I’d still be excited
about the opportunity she represents. As she said when she was elected,
this is “an historic moment for the women of America … For our daughters
and our granddaughters, now the sky is the limit. Anything is possible
for them.”

This is just a smattering of
the honorees. Check out the rest of them for additional inspiration and take
a moment to share who your Woman of the Year is.

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