FOR THEM, FIRST THINGS FIRST.
Byline: Maggie Jackson Associated Press Associated Press: see news agency.
Associated Press (AP)
Cooperative news agency, the oldest and largest in the U.S. and long the largest in the world.
First American First American may refer to:
It's taken two centuries for women to sit in some of the most plum - and not-so-plum - spots in America, but a look back shows how fast the barriers are falling, Working Woman magazine said Tuesday in releasing a chronicle of ``female firsts'' of the last 20 years.
The magazine chose to list more than 300 jobs taken, records broken, titles captured - from winning the grueling Iditarod dog-sled race (1985) to heading a major movie studio (1987) - to celebrate women's advancements in the 20 years since it began publishing.
``These are all exciting door-openers,'' said Geraldine Ferraro Geraldine Anne Ferraro (born August 26, 1935) is a Democratic politician and former member of the U.S. House of Representatives. She is best known as the first and only woman to date to represent a major U.S. political party as a candidate for Vice President. , who was profiled in the magazine as the first woman to run for vice president for a major party. She joined the Democratic ticket during its losing 1984 run.
``Pointing to what has gone before ... lays a marker for the future,'' Ferraro said in a telephone interview, stressing that young women especially should see that ``it's not so long ago that these firsts occurred.''
Among the ``female firsts'' at the pinnacle of public power are also Sandra Day O'Connor Sandra Day O'Connor (born March 26 1930) is an American jurist who served as the first female Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from 1981 to 2006. She was considered a strict constructionist. , appointed in 1981 as the first female Supreme Court justice, and Sheila Widnall Sheila Evans Widnall is an American aerospace researcher and Institute Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She served as United States Secretary of the Air Force between 1993 and 1997, making her the first woman to lead an entire branch of the US military in , first female Secretary of the Air Force since 1993.
Only two decades ago, few women even attended law school. Yet there are now 49 women serving in Congress following an election in which women's votes were courted as never before.
Whatever their fields, pioneering women aren't quite alone as they were in 1976. And they aren't considered freaks anymore.
When perky perk·y
adj. perk·i·er, perk·i·est
1. Having a buoyant or self-confident air; briskly cheerful.
2. Jaunty; sprightly.
perk Dorothy Hamill won the national, world and Olympic figure skating championships in 1976, her only major endorsement was for a Clairol shampoo. Now female athletes pull in million-dollar salaries and lucrative endorsements.
When Sally Ride became the first American woman in space in 1983, she was asked at a press conference if she wept when problems arose during training. She turned to her crew mate Rick Hauck and grinned.
``Why doesn't Rick get asked those questions?'' she asked.
Much more, of course, remains to be done. Women make up only 9 percent of police officers, 8 percent of patent holders and 10 percent of corporate directors. And a woman never has been president, vice president, Speaker of the House or chair of the Federal Reserve.
``We have come very far, but we clearly have miles to go before we sleep,'' says Sheila Wellington, president of Catalyst, a group that works to advance women in business.
``If my 2-1/2-week-old granddaughter is able to become a contributor, to be part of what is going on in our world economy, that's good for my grandsons, too,'' Ferraro said.
Joining the list of accomplishment
Some of the women chronicled in Working Woman magazine's list of ``female firsts'' in the last 20 years:
1976 - Barbara Jordan, first female keynote speaker at a Democratic National Convention.
1979 - Eloise R. Page, first female Central Intelligence Agency chief of station.
1981 - Tonia Schlegel, first girl to win All-American soap-box derby.
1981 - Carol Esserman, first female police officer to kill a suspect in the line of duty In the Line of Duty may refer to:
New York City
City (pop., 2000: 8,008,278), southeastern New York, at the mouth of the Hudson River. The largest city in the U.S. .
1990 - Dr. Antonia Novello, first female surgeon general The U.S. Surgeon General is charged with the protection and advancement of health in the United States. Since the 1960s the surgeon general has become a highly visible federal public health official, speaking out against known health risks such as tobacco use, and promoting disease .
1991 - Gertrude Belle Elion, first woman inducted into the Inventors Hall of Fame. A co-winner of the Nobel Prize Nobel Prize, award given for outstanding achievement in physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, peace, or literature. The awards were established by the will of Alfred Nobel, who left a fund to provide annual prizes in the five areas listed above. , she has developed drugs to treat leukemia, herpes and malaria.
1991 - Tonya Harding, first American woman to land a triple axel jump in figure-skating competition.
1993 - France Cardova, first female chief scientist for NASA NASA: see National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
in full National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Independent U.S. .
1995 - Sheryl Swoopes, first woman to have an athletic shoe named after her. She is an Olympic gold medal-winning basketball player.
2 Photos, Box
Photo: (1--2) Sandra Day O'Connor, left, was appointed in 1981 as the first female Supreme Court justice. Sally Ride became the first American woman in space in 1983.
Box: Joining the list of accomplishment (See Text)