Dear Tom, there are some women I admire much

Just a few on a very long list…

Malala Yousafzai~ A young girl, really; a Pakistani activist for women’s rights. She lives, or lived, in an area controlled by the Taliban, yet she believes girls and women should be educated. She was shot in the head for speaking out about her beliefs. She survived. She lives with constant death threats. The bravest of the brave.

Madeleine Albright~ The first female Secretary of State. Born in Czechoslovakia, her parents converted from Judaism to Catholicism in order to save their children and themselves from the Nazis. The family relocated to England and then to America. Dr. Albright, PhD in hand, began her political career fundraising for her daughter’s school. She went on to serve as our ambassador to the United Nations and then as Secretary of State.

Condoleeza Rice~ The second female Secretary of State and the first African American to hold that office. Among her many roles, she’s served as both a professor and a provost at Standford University. I am a big fan.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali~ A Somali born Dutch-American citizen, a feminist/atheist activist who fights a never-ending battle against female genital mutilation. She too lives with constant death threats. Another brave woman.

Maya Angelou~ An author, poet, civil rights activist and all around wonderful human being. I was privileged to host her back in the day for the University of Iowa’s Writer’s Workshop. I loved her dearly. I spent three days with her and I felt as if she’d adopted me. Her arms could hold the entire world.

Dianne Feinstein~ A politician with integrity. After the assassination of Harvey Milk she became the first female mayor of San Francisco. She is now a senator. She’s been reelected to the Senate four times. The only Democrat for whom I will continue to vote. She puts the American people first.

Golda Meir~ The grandmother of the Jewish people, the first woman and only woman to become the Prime Minister of Israel. She was a brave and compassionate soul. Her words are worth repeating:

A leader who doesn’t hesitate before he sends his nation into battle is not fit to be a leader.
One cannot and must not try to erase the past merely because it does not fit the present.
To be or not to be is not a question of compromise. Either you be or you don’t be.
We do not rejoice in victories. We rejoice when a new kind of cotton is grown and when strawberries bloom in Israel.
Don’t be so humble – you are not that great.
Pessimism is a luxury that a Jew can never allow himself.
We have always said that in our war with the Arabs we had a secret weapon – no alternative.
We can forgive the Arabs for killing our children. We cannot forgive them for forcing us to kill their children.
We will only have peace with the Arabs when they love their children more than they hate us.
Friends you knew–
Jaye Manus~ A great friend and an author who taught herself to format ebooks. She uses her skills, her gifts, to help Indie Authors. She is the most generous woman I know.
Penny Watson~ A woman who took up writing in her fourth decade. And does a damn good job of it! She never gives up, never gives in. She’s smart and savvy. We met when she was recovering from a heart attack at the ripe young age of 43. Was it 43? Or 42? Yet she keeps on keeping on – and she’s a great mother to her two wonderful children.
Marylin Warner~ A brilliant writer, teacher, daughter, mother, grandmother. I envy her her genius and her inspiration– her own creative loving mother.
XOXO! Julia

15 thoughts on “Dear Tom, there are some women I admire much

  1. Roberta

    I can agree with all of your picks except one. Will not get into that. America has a gold mine of exceptional women leaders. God bless America, with all her problems and mis-steps, she is still the last best hope on earth.

    I would add Meg Whitman and Marian Wright Edelman to your list.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. juliabarrett Post author

      There are so many women I would add, Roberta – if I had the space! Willa Cather and Marie Sandoz come to mind as well.


    1. juliabarrett Post author

      I admire you very much, Jaye. You possess (self-taught) a unique skills set. I’m super proud of you and what you’ve become.


      1. Alicia Butcher Ehrhardt

        Thank God – I can’t wait to figure out what I’ve programmed into chapter 21, in Book 2. It’s been such a long while, and the ‘other’ stuff took so long.

        Stubborn, I am. Add that to your list. When people are nice they call it other things.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. juliabarrett Post author

      And Anny, you are another! You too began a new writing career after raising a family. You are one of my inspirations!


  2. Marylin Warner

    Thank you so much, Julia. I forwarded this to my mother’s caregiver, and she read it aloud to my mom. You’ve always been supportive and generous and kind, and I appreciate you very much. Blessings for a wonderful Thanksgiving with your loved ones.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. juliabarrett Post author

      Thank you, Diana. I agree. Expecting a houseful! Do you celebrate Thanksgiving? My cousins from Winnipeg used to come down to spend Thanksgiving with us.



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