Even though men continue to reign over media, Karlie consistently does her part to be a recognizable female voice that determines what and who is important.
Who am I to think that I am magic?
I am the under-appreciated of everything majestic and tragic.
Emma's voracious appetite for gun reform has propelled her into the role of antagonist to legislators and an inspiration to our embattled youth.
Today's Extraordinary Woman describes herself as a "creative powerhouse for good." Chocolate enthusiast, Blackness advocate, speaker, and creative director Eunique Jones Gibson works to promote the beauty, accomplishments, potential, and greatness of Black folks from the past and future. As founder of the multimedia campaign Because of Them We Can, Gibson aims to "share our rich history and promising future through images that would refute stereotypes and build the esteem of our children."
The initiative began as a way to inspire her sons and provide a counter-narrative to the endless outpouring of demeaning, traumatizing, unflattering portrayals of Black folks in the media.
This year, she launched Dream Village in Hyattsville, Maryland to allow creators and innovators to a space to connect with other winners and thrive in a welcoming, nourishing environment.
On what she envisions for her newest venture, she told Blavity:
"I hope Dream Village will provide a space where we can see a visual representation of our connection to one another and our ability to accomplish more, together. I believe that it will bring a network of people, resources and experiences that will help us grow and thrive individually and collectively. More than a co-working or shared working space. It’s about creating spaces where we can build and help one another launch ideas and dreams because we understand the impact our success can have on our community. And the plan is to have these all over."
As we honor women of the past who have been the contributors, pioneers, innovators, connectors, and creatives, it’s important to acknowledge the women currently adding to history.
Rebecca Nagle is the Indigenous activist focused on helping women who are affected by sexual and domestic violence. Read more about what this extraordinary woman is doing to help women all over the United States.
In a former life, Madame Ava DuVernay helped projects like Spy Kids and Dreamgirls shine as a publicist via her public relations firm The DuVernay Agency before picking up a camera and changing the world forever. Since then, she's gone on to become one of Hollywood's brightest, most in-demand creators thanks to her knack for bold, thoughtful, realistic storytelling and powerful, evocative imagery.
Long before she chronicled Martin Luther King's famous march against untreated melanin envy and institutional hateration in Selma and took on mass incarceration via the Emmy-winning 13th, Ava won hearts and awards with a series of shorts, documentaries, and a pair of features, I Will Follow and Middle of Nowhere. Later, partnering with Oprah's OWN for Queen Sugar, she introduced the world to the Borderlons and has provided a loving, empowering work environment for an impressive roster of veteran and rookie filmmakers alike.
She even harnessed #BlackGirlMagic in an Apple commercial featuring Kerry Washington, Mary J Blige, and Taraji P. Henson and recently helped Jay Z and Bey work through their "Family Feud." These days, her $100 million-dollar epic A Wrinkle In Time is rocking the box office, showing a new generation of fantasy film fans a whole new world of possibilities. As a testament to the power of representation and the power of a strong community, via Array, she's cultivated a collective for distribution, creative, and advocacy resources for filmmakers.
And she's just getting started.
Here are Ava and Oprah discussing their creative partnership on A Wrinkle In Time and the brilliance of her OWN series, Queen Sugar:
Here, she opened up about switching gears and chasing her dreams after achieving success in one field:
It doesn’t take a genius to see that this is a male dominated industry but when we learn about women like Candace Rodney, we maintain hope that the next years numbers will improve.