List of women's firsts

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This is a list of women's firsts noting the first time that a woman or women achieved a given historical feat. A shorthand phrase for this development is "breaking the gender barrier" or "breaking the glass ceiling."[1][2] Other terms related to the glass ceiling can be used for specific fields related to those terms, such as "breaking the brass ceiling" for women in the military and "breaking the stained glass ceiling" for women clergy.[3][4] Inclusion on the list is reserved for achievements by women that have significant historical impact.

Arts and entertainment[edit]

Academy Awards[edit]

Emmy Awards[edit]

Film (aside from the Academy Awards)[edit]

Grammy Awards[edit]


  • 2018 Taleedah Tamer, first Saudi woman to be featured in an international fashion campaign and walk a couture runway[26]

Literature (aside from the Pulitzer and Nobel Prizes)[edit]

Pulitzer Prizes[edit]

Television (aside from the Emmy Awards)[edit]

Theater (aside from the Tony Awards)[edit]

Tony Awards[edit]

  • 1998: Julie Taymor, first woman to win a Tony Award for best director of a musical.[39][40]
  • 2004: Phylicia Rashād, first African-American woman to win a Tony Award for Best Lead Actress in a Play.
  • 2013: Cyndi Lauper, first woman to win a Tony Award for Best Original Score solo.
  • 2014: Audra McDonald, won a Tony Award, Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play this year, making her the first woman to ever earn six Tony Award wins (not counting honorary awards) and the first woman to win a Tony Award in all four acting categories.[41][41]
  • 2015: Tony Award for Best Original Score was won by Lisa Kron and Jeanine Tesori, making them the first female writing team to win that award.[42]



Aviation and Aerospace[edit]

Date Name Milestone
June 4, 1784 Élisabeth Thible First known woman to ride in a hot air balloon.[59][60][61]
1805 Sophie Blanchard First woman to pilot a hot air balloon.[62]
March 8, 1910 Raymonde de Laroche First woman to receive a pilot's license.[63]
1910–1911 Lilian Bland First woman in the world to design, build, and fly an aircraft.[64][65]
1912 Harriet Quimby First woman to fly across the English Channel.[66]
1914 Eugenie Mikhailovna Shakhovskaya First woman commissioned as a military pilot; she flew reconnaissance missions for the Czar in 1914.[67][68]
1915 Marie Marvingt First woman to fly a fighter plane in combat.[69][70]
1928 Amelia Earhart First woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean.[71]
1930 Amy Johnson First woman to fly from Britain to Australia.[72]
1933 Lotfia ElNadi First African woman and first Arab woman to earn a pilot's license.
May 18, 1953 Jacqueline Cochran First woman to break the sound barrier.[73]
June 16, 1963 Valentina Tereshkova First woman in space.[74]
1963 Betty Miller First female pilot to fly solo across the Pacific Ocean.[75]
1964 Jerrie Mock First woman to fly solo around the world.[76]
1976 Emily Howell Warner First woman to become an American airline captain.[77][78]
1978 Judy Cameron First female pilot hired to fly for a major Canadian carrier (Air Canada).[79]
1984 Svetlana Savitskaya First woman to space walk.[80]
February 1995 Eileen Collins First woman space shuttle pilot.[81]
2004 Irene Koki Mutungi, from Kenya First African woman to qualify to captain a commercial aircraft; she qualified to command the Boeing 737.[82]
2005 Hanadi Zakaria al-Hindi First Saudi woman to become a commercial airline pilot.[83]
September 18, 2006 Anousheh Ansari First female space tourist.[84]
2009 Patricia Mawuli Nyekodzi Ghana's first female civilian pilot, and the first woman in West Africa certified to build and maintain Rotax engines.[85]
2014 Nicola Scaife, from Australia Winner of the first women's hot air balloon world championship, which was held in Poland.[86]
2015 Dalia Iraq's first female commercial airline pilot.[87]
2015 Ouma Laouali Niger's first female pilot.[88]



1866: Lucy Hobbs Taylor, first American woman to earn a doctorate in dentistry.[89]

Born Lucy Hobbs on March 14, 1833 in Constable, New York. She was initially denied admission to dental school, then began private study with a professor from the Ohio College of Dental Surgery. In November 1865, she entered the Ohio College of Dental Surgery, where in 1866 she earned her doctorate in dentistry, becoming the first woman in the United States to do so. She married James Taylor and he followed her into the practice of dentistry. The two moved to Lawrence, Kansas, where they practiced together until her husband's death in 1886. She retired and became active in women's rights, and died in 1910.


Year Name Milestone
1608 Juliana Morell First woman to earn a doctorate degree.[90]
1678 Elena Cornaro Piscopia First woman to earn a Philosophy doctorate degree.[91][92]
1732 Laura Bassi First woman to officially teach at a European university.[93][94][95]
1875 Stefania Wolicka-Arnd First woman to receive a PhD in the modern era.[96][97]

International bodies[edit]


Library science[edit]



Nobel Prizes[edit]




Historic firsts for women in government:

Some of the most prominent female leaders of world powers in recent decades were (listed by name then position):

Current women leaders of national governments[edit]

The following women leaders are currently in office as either the head of their nation's government or the head of state:

Date term began Title of office Name Country
22 November 2005 Chancellor Angela Merkel Germany
6 January 2009 Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina Bangladesh (also Prime Minister 1996–2001)
12 July 2009 President Dalia Grybauskaitė Lithuania
16 October 2013 Prime Minister Erna Solberg Norway
4 April 2014 President Marie Louise Coleiro Preca Malta
18 February 2015 President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović Croatia
21 March 2015 Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa Namibia
5 June 2015 President Ameenah Gurib Mauritius
22 August 2015 President Bidhya Bhandari Nepal
6 April 2016 State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi Myanmar
20 May 2016 President Tsai Ing-wen Taiwan
28 January 2016 President Hilda Heine Marshall Islands
13 July 2016 Prime Minister Theresa May United Kingdom
10 October 2016 President Kersti Kaljulaid Estonia
29 June 2017 Prime Minister Ana Brnabić Serbia
14 September 2017 President Halimah Yacob Singapore
17 September 2017 Prime Minister Mercedes Aráoz Peru
26 October 2017 Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern New Zealand
30 November 2017 Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir Iceland
29 January 2018 Prime Minister Viorica Dăncilă Romania

Women as cabinet ministers[edit]

Women holding prominent cabinet posts have grown in numbers worldwide during the 20th and 21st centuries, and in recent years have increasingly held the top profile portfolios for their governments in non-traditional areas for women in government, such as national security and defense, finance, revenue and foreign relations.

Ministers of foreign affairs[edit]

The following women have held posts in recent years as ministers of foreign relations or the equivalent for their respective national governments:

Date term began Title of office Name Country
1957–03 and 1983–07 Minister of Foreign Affairs Tahira Tahirova Azerbaijan
1983–07 and 1983–12 Minister of Foreign Affairs Sima Eyvazova Azerbaijan
1983–12 and 1987–12 Minister of Foreign Affairs Elmira Gafarova Azerbaijan
1993–07 and 1994–01 Secretary of State Lala Shevket Azerbaijan
2007–08 and 2011– - Erato Kozakou-Marcoullis Cyprus
2008– - Rosemary Museminali Rwanda
2008– - Carolyn Rodrigues Guyana
2008 - Eka Tkeshelashvili Georgia
2008 - (Acting) Helen Clark New Zealand
2008– - Maxine McClean Barbados
2008– - Antonella Mularoni San Marino
2009–13 - Dipu Moni Bangladesh
2009 - Maria Adiato Diallo Nandigna Guinea-Bissau
2009–13 Secretary of State Hillary Clinton United States
2009 - Patricia Isabel Rodas Baca Honduras
2009– - Aurelia Frick Liechtenstein
2009– - Maite Nkoana-Mashabane South Africa
2009–11 - Sujata Koirala Nepal
2009–11 - Etta Banda Malawi
2009– - Naha Mint Mouknass Mauritania
2009– - Marie-Michele Rey Haiti
2009– - Louise Mushikiwabo Rwanda
2010– - Baroness Ashton of Upholland the European Union
2010 - (Acting) Rasa Juknevičienė Lithuania
2010–11 Minister of Foreign Affairs Lene Espersen Denmark
2010–11 - Aminatou Maïga Touré Niger
2010– - María Ángela Holguín Cuéllar Colombia
2010–11 - (Acting) Vlora Çitaku Kosovo
2010–11 - Trinidad Jiménez García-Herrera Spain
2010–11 - Michèle Alliot-Marie France
2011–13 - Hina Rabbani Khar Pakistan
2011 - (Acting) Erlinda F. Basilio Philippines
2011– - Yvette Sylla Madagascar
2013–14 - Emma Bonino Italy
2013–14 Minister of Foreign Affairs Viola Onwuliri Nigeria
2013– - Julie Bishop Australia
2013– - Dhunya Maumoon Maldives
2014– - Federica Mogherini Italy
2014– Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj India
2014– - Margot Wallström Sweden
2014– - Retno Marsudi Indonesia
2015– - Susana Malcorra Argentina

Ministers of defense and national security[edit]

The following women have held posts in recent years as ministers of defense, national security or an equivalent for their respective national governments:

Date term began Title of office Name Country
2002–04 Minister of Defence Michelle Bachelet Chile
2005–10 Minister of Defence Nilda Garré Argentina
2006–07 Minister of Defence Viviane Blanlot Soza Chile
2006–11 Minister of Defense Cristina Fontes Lima Cape Verde
2007–09 Minister of Defence Vlasta Parkanová Czech Republic
2007 Minister of Defence Guadalupe Larriva González Ecuador
2007 Minister of Defence Lorena Escudero Durán Ecuador
2007 (Acting) Minister of Defence Marina Pendeš Bosnia and Herzegovina
2007– Secretary General of Defence with Rank of Minister Ruth Tapia Roa Nicaragua
2007 Minister of Defence Yuriko Koike Japan
2007–09 Minister of Defence Cécile Manorohanta Madagascar
2008– Minister of Defence Carme Chacón i Piqueras Spain
2008–10 Minister of Defence Elsa Maria Neto D'Alva Texeira de Barros Pinto São Tomé e Príncipe
2008– Minister of Veterans' Affairs Judith Collins New Zealand
2008– Associate Minister of Defence Heather Roy New Zealand
2008– Minister of Disarmament and Arms Control Georgina te Heuheu New Zealand
2008– Minister of Defence Ljubica Jelušič Slovenia
2008– Minister of Defence Rasa Juknevičienė Lithuania
2009–13 Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano United States
2009–12 Minister of Defence and Veterans' Affairs Lindiwe Nonceba Sisulu South Africa
2009–11 Minister of Defence Bidhya Devi Bhandari Nepal
2009–11 Minister of Defence Angélique Ngoma Gabon
2010–2011 Minister of Defence Gitte Lillelund Bech Denmark
2010 (Acting) Minister of Defence and Security Lesego Motsumi Botswana
2010–13 Minister of Security Nilda Garré Argentina
2011 Minister of Defence María Cecilia Chacón Chacón Bolivia
2012– Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula South Africa
2012– Minister of Defense Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert Netherlands
2013– Minister of Defence Mimi Kodheli Albania
2013– Minister of Defence Ine Marie Eriksen Søreide Norway
2013–15 Minister of Security María Cecilia Rodríguez Argentina
2013– Minister of Defence Ursula von der Leyen Germany
2014– Minister of Defence Roberta Pinotti Italy
2015– Minister of Defence Marise Payne Australia
2015– Minister of Security Patricia Bullrich Argentina
2016–18 Minister of Defence Maria Dolores de Cospedal Spain
2017– Minister of Defence Radmila Šekerinska Republic of Macedonia
2017–17 Minister of Armed Forces Sylvie Goulard France
2017– Minister of Armed Forces Florence Parly France
2018– Minister of Defence Margarita Robles Spain

Ministers of finance or revenue[edit]

The following women have held posts in recent years as ministers of finance, revenue, or an equivalent for their respective national governments:

Date term began Title of office Name Country
1952–07 Minister of Social Security Zuleykha Seyidmammadova Azerbaijan
1988–11 Minister of Social Security Lydia Rasulova Azerbaijan
1990–91 Minister of Economy Zélia Cardoso de Mello Brazil
1990–93 Minister of Finance Ruth Richardson New Zealand
1998–02 Minister of Finance Brigita Schmögnerová Slovakia
2003–06 Minister of Finance Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala Nigeria
2005–10, 2016– Minister of Finance Sri Mulyani Indrawati Indonesia
2005–07 Minister of Economy and Public Finances Felisa Miceli Argentina
2008–11 Minister of Economy and Competitiveness Fátima Maria Carvalho Fialho Capo Verde
2008–11 Minister of Finance Diana Dragutinović Serbia
2008– Minister for the National Investment Plan Verica Kalanović Serbia
2008 Minister of Finance Wilma Josefina Salgado Tamayo Ecuador
2008– Minister of Finance María Elsa Viteri Acaiturri Ecuador
2009– Minister of Economy Helena Nosolini Embalo Guinea-Bissau
2009– Chairperson of the Council of Economic Advisors Christina Romer United States
2009– Minister of Finance Clotilde Niragira Burundi
2009–11 Minister of Finance Syda Namirembe Bumba Uganda
2009–11 Government Councillor of Finance and Economy Sophie Thevenoux Monaco
2009–11 Minister of Finance and Economy Elena Salgado Méndez Spain
2009– Minister of Finance Ingrida Simonytė Lithuania
2009– Minister of Economic Affairs Michelle Winklaar Aruba (Dutch External Territory)
2009–11 Minister of Finance Raya Haffar al-Hassan Lebanon
2010–11 Minister of Economy Lamia Assi Syria
2010– Minister of Economic Policy Katiuska Kruskaya King Mantilla Ecuador
2010– Chairperson of Economic Planning Council Christina Y. Liu Taiwan
2010– Economic Secretary to the Treasury Justine Greening United Kingdom
2010– Minister of Economic and Stability Development Vera Kobalia Georgia
2010– Minister of Economy Darja Radić Slovenia
2010–11 Minister of Finance Wonnie Boedhoe Suriname
2010–13 Minister of Finance Penny Wong Australia
2010– Federal Councillor of Finance Eveline Widmer-Sclumpf Switzerland
2010– Minister for Economy Kim Wilson Bermuda (British Dependent Territory)
2010 (Acting) Minister of Finance Elfreda Tamba Liberia
2010– Finance Minister Martina Dalić Croatia
2011 (Acting) Minister of Finance Dinara Shaydieva Kyrgyzstan
2011– Federal Minister of Finance Maria Fekter Austria
2011– Minister of National Revenue Gail Shea Canada
2011–2014 Minister of Finance Jutta Urpilainen Finland
2011– Minister of Budget Valérie Pécresse France
2011– Minister of Economy and Finances Adidjatou Mathys Benin
2011– Minister of Budget, Finances, Taxes, Numeric Economy Sonia Backès Nouvelles Caledonie (French External Territory)
2011– Minister of Finance and Economic Planning Maria Kiwanuka Uganda
2011– Minister of the Treasury Anne Craine Isle of Man
2011–2014 Minister of Economy Margrethe Vestager Denmark
2011–2015 Coordinating Minister for the Economy Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala Nigeria
2012–2013 Minister of Finance Katrín Júlíusdóttir Iceland
2013–2015 Minister of State and Finance Maria Luís Albuquerque Portugal
2013– Minister of Finance Siv Jensen Norway
2014– Minister of Finance Magdalena Andersson Sweden
2015– Minister of Finance Kemi Adeosun Nigeria
2018– Minister of Finance María Jesús Montero Spain
2018– Minister of Economy Nadia Calviño Spain

Comparing women's integration into branches of government[edit]

Executive branch[edit]

Women have been notably in fewer numbers in the executive branch of government. The gender gap has been closing, however, albeit slowly[113] The first women other than monarchs to hold head of state positions were in socialist countries. The first was Khertek Anchimaa-Toka of the Tuvan People's Republic from 1940–1944, followed by Sükhbaataryn Yanjmaa of the Mongolian People's Republic 1953–1954 and Soong Ching-ling of the People's Republic of China from 1968–1972 and 1981.

Following the socialist countries, the Nordic countries have been forerunners in including women in the executive branch. The second cabinet Brundtland (1986–1989) was historical in that 8 out of 18 cabinet members were women, and in 2007 the second cabinet Stoltenberg (2005–2013) was more than 50% women.

In 2003, Finland had a historical moment when all top leaders of the country were women and also represented different political parties: Social democrat Tarja Halonen was President, Riitta Uosukainen from National Coalition Party was Speaker of the Parliament and after the parliamentary elections of 2003 Anneli Jäätteenmäki from Center party was on her way to become the first female Prime Minister of Finland. By June 22, 2010 Mari Kiviniemi of the Centre Party was appointed the second female Prime Minister of Finland.

Between 2007 and 2011 the Finnish cabinet was 60% female, with a female Prime Minister from 2010 to 2011. Between 2014 and 2015 the Finnish cabinet was 59% female.

The present Danish government is a coalition between the Social Democrats, the Social-Liberal Party and the Socialist People's Party. All three parties have female leaders. Helle Thorning-Schmidt is Prime Minister.[114]

The world's first elected female president was Vigdís Finnbogadóttir of Iceland, whose term lasted from 1980 to 1996.

In 2005, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia became Africa's first elected female head of state.

Legislative branch[edit]

It was not until World War I and the first socialist revolutions that the first few women became members of governments. Alexandra Kollontai became the first female to hold a minister position, as the People's Commissar for Social Welfare in Soviet Russia in 1917.[115] Nina Bang, Danish Minister of Education from 1924–26, was the world's second full female cabinet minister.

The first female head of government was Evgenia Bosh, the Bolshevik military leader who held the People's Secretary of Internal Affairs position in the Ukraine People's Republic of the Soviets of Workers and Peasants from 1917–1918, which was responsible for executive functions.[116][117][118] Nevertheless, development was slow and it was not until the end of the 20th century that female ministers stopped being unusual.

The first government organization formed with the goal of women's equality was the Zhenotdel, in Soviet Russia.

According to a 2006 report by the Inter-Parliamentary Union, 16% of all parliament members in the world are female. In 1995, the United Nations set a goal of 30% female representation.[119] The current annual growth rate of women in national parliaments is about 0.5% worldwide. At this rate, gender parity in national legislatures will not be achieved until 2068.[120]

The top ten countries in terms of number of female parliamentary members are Rwanda with 56.3%, Sweden (47.0%), Cuba (43.2%), Finland (41.5%), the Netherlands (41.3%), Argentina (40.0%), Denmark (38.0%), Angola (37.3%), Costa Rica (36.8%), Spain (36.3%).[121]As of 30 August 2008 Cuba has the highest percentage for countries without a quota. In South Asia, Nepal is highest in the rank of women participation in politics with (33%).[122] Among East Asian countries, Taiwan has the highest percentage of women in Parliament (38.0%). In the United States in 2008, the New Hampshire State Senate became the first state legislature upper house to possess an elected female majority.

The United Kingdom and United States are roughly in line with the world average. The House of Lords has 139 women (19.7%), while there are 125 women (19.4%) in the House of Commons of the United Kingdom.

On November 6, 2012, New Hampshire made US History by having all-female congressional delegation to Congress with Annie Kuster being elected to represent New Hampshire's 2nd congressional district in the House of Representatives, Carol Shea-Porter regained her House seat to represent New Hampshire's 1st congressional district in the House of Representatives, and with Jeanne Shaheen and Kelly Ayotte both represented New Hampshire in the United States senate.[123]

On November 8, 2016, New Hampshire again made US History by having an all-female, all-Democratic delegation to the US Congress. Incumbent Republican senator, Kelly Ayotte, was defeated by then-New Hampshire Governor, Maggie Hassan, a Democrat, in the senate election to serve alongside Democratic senator, Jeanne Shaheen. Representative Carol Shea-Porter, a Democrat, defeated incumbent representative, Frank Guinta, a Republican, again in New Hampshire's 1st congressional district to serve alongside Ann Kuster, who represents New Hampshire 2nd congressional district in the House of Representatove to achieve another historic "women's first".[124]

Local representation[edit]

There has been an increasing focus on women's representation at a local level.[125] Most of this research is focused on developing countries. Governmental decentralization often results in local government structures that are more open to the participation of women, both as elected local councilors and as the clients of local government services.[113] A 2003 survey conducted by United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), a global network supporting inclusive local governments, found that the average proportion of women in local council was 15%. In leadership positions, the proportion of women was lower: for instance, 5% of mayors of Latin American municipalities are women.

According to a comparative study of women in local governments in East Asia and the Pacific, women have been more successful in reaching decision-making position in local governments than at the national level.[120] Local governments tend to be more accessible and have more available positions. Also, women's role in local governments may be more accepted because they are seen as an extension of their involvement in the community.

Indian panchayats[edit]

The local panchayat system in India provides an example of women's representation at the local governmental level.[125] The 73rd and 74th Constitutional Amendments in 1992 mandated panchayat elections throughout the country. The reforms reserved 33% of the seats for women and for castes and tribes proportional to their population. Over 700,000 women were elected after the reforms were implemented in April 1993.

See also[edit]


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Cite error: A list-defined reference with group name "lower-alpha" is not used in the content (see the help page).


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  72. ^ "1930 - First woman pilot to fly from England to Australia - Amy Johnson (England)". Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  73. ^ Long, Tony (2011-05-18). "May 18, 1953: Jackie Cochran, First Woman to Break Sound Barrier". Wired. 
  74. ^ "Valentina Tereshkova: First Woman in Space". Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
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  76. ^ ""Jerrie" Mock (1925-), Pioneer Aviatrix". Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
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List of All first women in different fields [1]n different fields ]

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]




  • August 6, 1926: Gertrude Ederle, first woman to swim across the English Channel.[10]
  • 1937: Grace Hudowalski was the ninth person and first woman to climb all 46 of the Adirondack High Peaks.[11][12][13]
  • 1940s: Lois Fegan Farrell became the first female reporter to cover a professional hockey team in America.[14]
  • 1960: Mary McGee becomes the first official female motorcycle racer in the United States by earning a license from the Federation Internationale de Motocyclisme. She is also the first woman to compete in the Baja 500 off-road race.
  • 1960-- Wilma Rudolph, track and field champion, became the first American woman to win three gold medals in the Rome Olympics.[15][15] She elevated women's track to a major presence in the United States. As a member of the black community, she is also regarded as a civil rights and women's rights pioneer. Along with other 1960 Olympic athletes such as Cassius Clay (who later became Muhammad Ali), Rudolph became an international star due to the first international television coverage of the Olympics that year.
  • November 27, 1968: Penny Ann Early, first woman to play major professional basketball, in an ABA game (Kentucky Colonels vs. Los Angeles Stars).[16][17]
  • August 15, 1970: Patricia Palinkas, first woman to play professionally in an American football game.[18]
  • May 16, 1975: Junko Tabei, first woman to reach the summit of Mount Everest.[19]
  • 1993: Halli Reid became the first woman to swim across Lake Erie, swimming from Long Point, Ontario, to North East, Pennsylvania, in 17 hours.[20][21][22]
  • October 18, 1997: Liz Heaston, first female to play and score in a college football game, kicking two extra points in the 1997 Linfield vs. Willamette football game.[23]
  • December 26, 2008: Sarah Thomas, first woman to officiate a NCAA football bowl game.[24]
  • September 4, 2009: Carolynn Sells becomes the first woman to win a solo motorcycle race on the Snaefell Mountain Course in the Isle of Man when she won the Ultra Lightweight race at the 2009 Manx Grand Prix. Carolynn won the race in a time of 1hr 25mins 24.51seconds (106.022 mph) in wet and windy conditions, beating her nearest opponent by 1 minute and 2 seconds.
  • May 4, 2012: Rosie Napravnik became the first woman jockey to win the Kentucky Oaks, riding Believe You Can.[25]
  • August 9, 2012: Shannon Eastin becomes the first woman to officiate a National Football League game in a pre-season matchup between the Green Bay Packers and the San Diego Chargers.[26]
  • 2012: Anna Wardley, from England, became the first person to complete a solo swim around Portsea Island recognized by the British Long Distance Swimming Association.[27]
  • May 31, 2013: Lydia Nsekera became the first female FIFA Executive Committee member.[28]
  • May 18, 2013: Rosie Napravnik places third in the Preakness Stakes on Mylute, making her the first woman to have ridden in all three Triple Crown races.[29] On June 8, 2013 she rode the filly Unlimited Budget to a 6th-place finish in the 2013 Belmont, becoming the first woman to ride all three Triple Crown races in the same year.[30]
  • June 2013: Ashley Freiberg became the first woman to claim an overall GT3 Cup Challenge victory in North America, winning the Porsche IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge.[31]
  • September 23, 2013: Sarah Outen arrived in a small harbor on the Aleutian island of Adak, and thus became the first person to row solo from Japan to Alaska, as well as the first woman to complete a mid-Pacific row from West to East.[32]
  • 2013: Davie Jane Gilmour became the first woman to lead the Board of Directors for Little League.[33]
  • 2013: UFC 157, which took place in February, featured not only the first women's fight in UFC history but also the first UFC event to be headlined by two female fighters (Ronda Rousey and Liz Carmouche).[34]
  • 2013: On her fifth attempt and at age 64, Diana Nyad became the first person confirmed to swim from Cuba to Florida without the protection of a shark cage, swimming from Havana to Key West.[35]
  • 2013: Scotland's solicitor general, Lesley Thomson, became the first woman to be appointed to Scottish Rugby's board.[36]
  • 2013: Anna Wardley, from England, became the first woman to swim non-stop around the Isle of Wight.[37]
  • 2013: Peggy O'Neal, an American-born lawyer, became the first woman in the Australian Football League to hold the position of club president, being chosen as the president of the Richmond Football Club.[38]
  • 2013: Tracey Gaudry became the first woman appointed as vice president of the Union Cycliste Internationale.[39]
  • 2013: Maria Toor, a squash player from South Waziristan, became the winner of the first ever women's event in the Nash Cup in Canada by beating Milou van der Heijden of the Netherlands 13–11, 11–3, 11–9.[40]
  • 2013: Tatyana McFadden became the first athlete to win six gold medals at a championships during the 2013 IPC Athletics World Championships in Lyon. She claimed gold in every event from the 100 meters through to the 5,000 meters.[41][42]
  • 2013: Tatyana McFadden won the Boston, Chicago, London, and New York marathons in 2013.[43][44][45][46] This makes her the first person – able-bodied or otherwise – to win the four major marathons in the same year.[45][46][47] She also set a new course record for the Chicago Marathon (1 hour, 42 minutes, 35 seconds).[45]
  • 2013: Denise Fejtek became the first woman to complete the "Peak to Heat Double" – the combination of summiting Mount Everest and finishing the Ironman Triathlon World Championship in Kona, Hawaii.[48] She reached the Everest Summit on May 23, 2010 and finished the Hawaii Ironman in October 2013.[49]
  • 2013: Sonya Baumstein became the first person to stand-up paddleboard across the Bering Strait.[50][51]
  • 2013: Meredith Novack became the fastest person, and first woman, to pull a double crossing of the Auau Channel in Hawaii.[52][53] Her time was 11 hours and one minute.[53]
  • 2013: Rosie Napravnik won 17 races to become the first woman to capture the leading rider title at Keeneland.[54]
  • 2013: Olivia Prokopova became the first woman to win the World Crazy Golf Championship.[55]
  • 2013: Mia Hamm became the first woman inducted into the World Football Hall of Fame in Pachuca, Mexico.[56]
  • 2013: Emily Bell became the first woman to kayak the length of Britain.[57]
  • 2013: Casey Stoney became the first female member of the Professional Footballers' Association's management committee.[58]
  • 2013: Jodi Eller became the first woman to complete the 1,515 mile Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail.[59]
  • 2013: On March 1, 2013, Privateers owner and president Nicole Kirnan served as the team's coach for the first time, making her the first woman to coach a professional hockey team in the United States.[60][61]
  • 2014: Torah Bright became the first woman to qualify for three snowboard disciplines at a Winter Olympics, specifically snowboard cross, halfpipe and slopestyle.[62]
  • 2014: Ashley Freiberg became the first woman to win an overall race in Continental Tire Challenge History when she won the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge. Her co-driver was Shelby Blackstock.[63]
  • 2014: The first women competed in ski jumping at the Olympics.[64]
  • 2014: Jennifer Welter became the first woman non-kicker or placekick-holder to play in a men's pro football game; she played running back for the Texas Revolution.[65]
  • 2014: Abbey Holmes became the first woman to kick 100 goals in one regular season of Australian Rules football.[66][67]
  • 2014: Annabel Anderson, from New Zealand, became the first woman to cross Cook Strait standing on a paddleboard.[68]
  • 2014: Peta Searle became the first woman appointed as a development coach in the Australian Football League when she was chosen by St Kilda as a development coach.[69]
  • 2014: 16-year-old Katie Ormerod, from Britain, became the first female snowboarder to land a backside double cork 1080.[70]
  • 2014: Shelby Osborne became the first female defensive back in American football when she was drafted by Campbellsville University in Kentucky.[71]
  • 2014: Amélie Mauresmo became the first woman to coach a top male tennis player (specifically, Andy Murray).[72]
  • 2014: Corinne Diacre became the first woman to coach a men's professional soccer team (Clermont Foot) in a competitive match in France on August 4, 2014, her 40th birthday.[73]
  • 2014: Cecilia Brækhus, from Norway, became the first Norwegian and the first woman to hold all major world championship titles in her weight division (welterweight) in boxing.[74]
  • 2014: On August 15, 2014, Mo'ne Davis was the first girl in Little League World Series history to pitch a winning game for the Taney Dragons and earned the win,[75] and she was also the first girl to pitch a shutout in Little League postseason history.[76][77]
  • 2014: Amy Hughes, from England, ran 53 marathons in 53 days, thus setting the record for the most marathons run on consecutive days by any person, male or female.[78]
  • 2015: Jennifer Welter became the first woman hired to coach in men's pro football when the Texas Revolution of the Champions Indoor Football league announced that Welter was hired to coach linebackers and special teams.[79]


Women's rights[edit]

See also[edit]

Further reading[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Klapheck, Elisa. "Regina Jonas 1902–1944". Jewish Women's Archive. Retrieved 3 April 2011. 
  3. ^ "South Carolina Methodists welcome their first female bishop – WorldWide Religious News". 2004-09-30. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  4. ^ "Barbara Harris". The HistoryMakers. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  5. ^ "Angela Berners-Wilson: I was the first female priest in England | Life and style". Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  6. ^ "BBC News – Women bishops: A century-long struggle for recognition". 2012-11-21. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  7. ^ "Katharine Jefferts Schori (American bishop) – Encyclopædia Britannica". Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  8. ^ "First female Anglican bishop consecrated". Deseret News. 2008-05-31. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  9. ^ "Reverend Libby Lane named as CofE's first female bishop". 2014-12-17. Retrieved 14 February 2018. 
  10. ^ "Gertrude Ederle becomes first woman to swim English Channel — This Day in History — 8/6/1926". Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  11. ^ "Adirondack mountain renamed after first woman to scale all 46 High Peaks". Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  12. ^ "Tribute to Grace Hudowalski 46er #9". Adirondack Forum. March 14, 2004. Archived from the original on 14 February 2006. Retrieved 12 December 2016. 
  13. ^ "Grace Peak Update 11-23-08". Views From The Top. November 23, 2008. Retrieved 16 May 2011. 
  14. ^ "Remembering Lois Fegan Farrell: first female reporter to cover a professional hockey team |". 2013-06-26. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  15. ^ a b —Wilma Rudolph. "Wilma Rudolph – Track and Field Athlete, Athlete". Retrieved 3 July 2017. 
  16. ^ The Bulletin,509682. Archived from the original on 5 September 2013. Retrieved 11 November 2017 – via Google News Archive Search.  More than one of |website= and |work= specified (help); Missing or empty |title= (help)
  17. ^ The Unofficial Guide to Basketball's Nastiest and Most Unusual Records – Kerry Banks. Google Books. 1968-11-28. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  18. ^ McKechnie, Gary; Howell, Nancy (April 5, 1992). "Pat Parlinkas, The Only Woman To Play Professional Football". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 25 August 2011. 
  19. ^ Otake, Tomoko. "Junko Tabei : The first woman atop the world". The Japan Times. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  20. ^ Martin, Jim (4 June 2012). "What's in a name: Halli Reid Park". Erie Times. 
  21. ^ VICTOR FERNANDES, The Associated Press. "First woman to swim Lake Erie looks back". Philadelphia Daily News. 
  22. ^ "Twenty-Year Anniversary of Halli Reid's Swim Across Lake Erie – People". 
  23. ^ "Woman Kicks Extra Points". The New York Times. October 20, 1997. Retrieved 20 April 2011. 
  24. ^ "At Pizza Bowl, Thomas 1st woman to officiate bowl", from the AP newswire, via Yahoo! Sports, accessed 27 December 2009.
  25. ^ Lew Freedman (2012-05-04). "Rosie Napravnik rides into history with victory in Kentucky Oaks". Chicago Sun-Times. 
  26. ^ Wilson, Ryan (August 6, 2012). "Shannon Eastin will be first woman to work NFL officiating crew". CBS Sports. Retrieved 9 August 2012. 
  27. ^ "Anna Wardley completes her swim around Portsea Island". June 19, 2012. Retrieved 22 September 2013. 
  28. ^ "Nsekera becomes first female FIFA Executive Committee member". Retrieved 31 May 2013. 
  29. ^ Ed Zieralski (2013-06-08). "Many reasons for lack of women jockeys". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved 14 June 2013. 
  30. ^ Thomas, Colleen (2013-06-04). "Rosie Napravnik has another shot at history aboard Unlimited Budget at Belmont". Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  31. ^ "Freiberg Becomes The First Female Overall North American GT3 Cup Challenge Winner at The Glen — IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge by Yokohoma". Archived from the original on 5 July 2013. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  32. ^ Alexander Smith; NBC News contributor. "'Absolutely ecstatic': British woman is first to row solo from Japan to Alaska". NBC News. 
  33. ^ "Gilmour is Little League's first female board chair – The Sunday Dispatch". Archived from the original on 16 December 2013. Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  34. ^ "Women in the UFC: Looking Back at the First Six Months, And What It Means for the Future". Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  35. ^ Alvarez, Lizette (September 2, 2013). "Nyad Completes Cuba-to-Florida Swim". The New York Times. 
  36. ^ "Solicitor general becomes first woman on Scottish Rugby board". 17 September 2013. Retrieved 18 September 2013. 
  37. ^ Copping, Jasper (21 Sep 2013). "57,000 strokes later, first woman swims non-stop around Isle of Wight". London: Retrieved 22 September 2013. 
  38. ^ "Woman to lead Tigers in AFL first". October 3, 2013. Retrieved 3 October 2013. 
  39. ^ "Gaudry Q&A: Reflecting on the UCI vote with its first female vice president". Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  40. ^ Taimur Sikander. "Maria Toor becomes first female Nash Cup champion". Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  41. ^ Elizabeth Hudson. "BBC Sport – IPC Athletics: Sophie Kamlish wins T44 200m bronze in Lyon". BBC Sport. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  42. ^ "Tatyana McFadden goes 6 for 6 at IPC world championships – OlympicTalk". Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  43. ^ "BBC Sport – Boston marathon winner Tatyana McFadden races in London". BBC Sport. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  44. ^ "BBC Sport - London Marathon 2013: Priscah Jeptoo and Tsegaye Kebede win". BBC Sport. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  45. ^ a b c Erbentraut, Joseph (2013-10-14). "Meet The First Person To Win 3 Major Marathons In One Year". Huffington Post. 
  46. ^ a b Whiteside, Kelly (2013-11-03). "NYC Marathon: Tatyana McFadden completes slam". USA Today. 
  47. ^ "Tatyana McFadden makes history at Chicago Marathon". Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  48. ^ "First Woman in History Conquers the "Peak to Heat Double" – Press Release – Digital Journal". Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  49. ^ "Peak to Heat Double". Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  50. ^ "OUTSIDE Teams Up with Land Rover to Launch an Original Video Series, Driven: Pioneers Redefining Possible". MarketWatch. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  51. ^ "Sonya Baumstein on SUP-ing Across the Bering Strait – Paddleboarding –". Outside Online. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  52. ^ "Meredith Novack Breaks World Record in Auau Double Channel Crossing". SwimSwam. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  53. ^ a b "Meredith Novack swims Hawaii's 20-mile Auau Channel in record time –". UPI. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  54. ^ "Napravnik is first female to win Keeneland riding title; Ramseys earn 13th owner". Archived from the original on 29 October 2013. Retrieved 12 December 2016. 
  55. ^ Johnny Sharp. "World crazy golf championship has its first female winner". the Guardian. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  56. ^ Paul Nicholson. "Hamm is first woman inductee into Pachuca World Football Hall of Fame – Inside World Football". Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  57. ^ "Water fear woman first to kayak length of Britain". Herald Scotland. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  58. ^ Alistair Magowan. "BBC Sport – England captain Casey Stoney is first women on PFA committee". BBC Sport. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  59. ^ "First Woman Completes 1,515 Mile Saltwater Paddling Trail". Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  60. ^ "Watertown Daily Times – Local pro hockey: With Kirnan behind bench, Privateers win". Watertown Daily Times. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  61. ^ "Nicole Kirnan, first woman to coach men's pro hockey team, faced 'demoralizing' criticism". Yahoo! Sports. 14 March 2013. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  62. ^ "Home – Live Scores & Latest News – Fox Sports". Fox Sports. 29 February 2016. 
  63. ^ "Reba's son and first woman win Continental Tire race". Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  64. ^ Myerberg, Paul (2014-02-11). "Carina Vogt wins historic first women's ski jump gold". USA Today. 
  65. ^ Dan Treadway. "Jen Welter Becomes First Woman to Play Running Back in a Professional Football Game". Archived from the original on 2 March 2014. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  66. ^ "Abbey Holmes becomes first ever woman to kick 100 goals in Australian Rules football". Archived from the original on 22 March 2014. Retrieved 12 December 2016. 
  67. ^ "Century maker — Abbey Holmes is the first female footy player to kick 100 goals in a season". Adelaide Now. Retrieved 11 November 2017. 
  68. ^ "Anderson paddles into history". Radio New Zealand. 3 April 2014. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  69. ^ Samantha Lane. "Peta Searle becomes first woman appointed as a development coach in the AFL". Daily Life. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  70. ^ "16 year old Katie Ormerod is first Woman to land a backside Double Cork 1080". Transworld Snowboarding. 10 June 2014. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  71. ^ Marisa Kabas. "College football's first female defensive back says: 'Never play scared'". TODAY. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  72. ^ "Amélie Mauresmo Becomes the First Woman to Coach a Top Male Tennis Player – Shape Magazine". Shape Magazine. Retrieved 14 March 2015. 
  73. ^ "Clermont lose first match as Corinne Diacre makes history in France". The Guardian. 4 August 2014. Retrieved 4 August 2014. 
  74. ^ "Brækhus first woman to unify division". 
  75. ^ Rhoden, William C. (August 15, 2014). "A Mound Becomes a Summit: Mo'ne Davis Dominates at Little League World Series". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 17 August 2014. Retrieved 17 August 2014. 
  76. ^ Jacobs, Emma (August 16, 2014). "Mo'ne Davis Throws Like A Girl—At 70 MPH". NPR. Archived from the original on 17 August 2014. Retrieved 17 August 2014. 
  77. ^ Berg, Ted (August 15, 2014). "13-year-old sensation Mo'Ne Davis throws two-hit shutout at Little League World Series". USA Today. Archived from the original on 17 August 2014. Retrieved 17 August 2014. 
  78. ^ "BBC News – Amy Hughes completes 53 marathon record bid". BBC News. 
  79. ^ "Texas indoor pro football team first to hire woman to coaching staff".