Trailblazers: 125 Kiwi Women Who Changed the World

125 Kiwi women who changed the world have been showcased in a special project in The New Zealand Herald, which explores their extraordinary stories.

It’s “a combination of high profile women, such as Helen Clark and Dame Whina Cooper, as well as lesser-known stories, such as that of foster mother Wanda Messam and adventurer Helen Thayer,” as reported in another NZHerald article.

  1. Kahupeka – ancient Māori healer and pioneer of herbal medicine
  2. Ahumai Te Paerata (b. 1824) – celebrated Māori warrior
  3. Mother Aubert (b. 1835) – soon-to-be New Zealand’s first saint
  4. Elizabeth Pulman (b. 1836) – New Zealand’s first female professional photographer
  5. Elizabeth Yates (b. 1845) – the first female mayor in the British commonwealth
  6. Kate Sheppard (b. 1847) – New Zealand’s first female newspaper editor and pioneering suffragette
  7. Mary J. Carpenter (b. 1850) – the first person to sign the suffrage petition of 1893
  8. Marianne Smith (b. 1851) – founder of Smith and Caughey’s
  9. Kate Edger (b. 1857) – the first woman to earn a university degree in New Zealand
  10. Winifred Boys-Smith (b. 1865) – New Zealand’s first female university professor
  11. Meri Te Tai Mangakāhia (b. 1868) – the first wahine to address the Kotahitanga Parliament
  12. Frances Hodgkins (b. 1869) – pioneering artist who took New Zealand art to the world
  13. Elizabeth McCombs (b. 1873) – New Zealand’s first female elected Member of Parliament
  14. Margaret Cruickshank (b. 1873) – New Zealand’s first female GP
  15. Lady Victoria Plunket (b. 1873) – pioneering child welfare advocate and namesake of the Plunket Society
  16. Ethel Benjamin (b. 1875) – the first woman to study law in Australasia and New Zealand’s first female lawyer
  17. Ettie Rout(b. 1877) – World War I hero and early safe-sex campaigner
  18. Aunt Daisy (b. 1879) – New Zealand’s first lady of radio
  19. Frances Alda (b. 1879) – New Zealand’s original opera diva
  20. Te Puea Hērangi (b. 1883) – central figure in establishing the Kingitanga movement
  21. Katherine Mansfield (b. 1888) – pioneering author
  22. Dame Rangimarie Hetet (b. 1892) – champion of Māori culture and tohunga raranga
  23. Kathleen Curtis (Lady Rigg) (b. 1892) – pioneering scientist and the first female fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand
  24. Mabel Howard (b. 1894) – New Zealand’s first female trade union leader and first female cabinet minister
  25. Dame Whina Cooper (b. 1895) – celebrated Māori leader and advocate for Māori rights and welfare
  26. Dame Ngaio Marsh (b. 1895) – queen of crime and best-selling novelist
  27. Julia Yates, fashion entrepreneur, fashion pioneer and the woman who brought ladies trousers to New Zealand
  28. Bobby Angus – pioneering fashion designer
  29. Flora MacKenzie (b. 1902) – pioneering fashion designer and entrepreneur
  30. Iriaka Ratana (b. 1905) – the first Māori woman to be elected to New Zealand Parliament
  31. Violet Walrond (b. 1905) – New Zealand’s first female Olympic athlete
  32. Rita Angus (b. 1908) – pioneer of modern art
  33. Kitty Kain (b. 1908) – commander of the New Zealand Women’s Auxiliary Air Force
  34. Jean Batten (b. 1909) – world record-setting aviatrix
  35. Nancy Wake (b. 1912) – World War II hero and the Allies most decorated service woman
  36. Emma Knuckey (b. 1913) – pioneering fashion designer
  37. Paddy Walker (b. 1917) – pioneering Pasifika leader and founder of Pacifica
  38. Nora Crawford (b. 1917) – New Zealand’s first female detective
  39. Edith Farkas (b. 1921) – pioneering meteorologist who helped discover the hole in the ozone layer
  40. Mira Szászy (b. 1921) – pioneer for Māori women’s rights and the first Māori female university graduate
  41. Joan Wiffen (b. 1922) – history-making palaeontologist, who discovered the first dinosaur fossils in New Zealand
  42. Rina Moore (b. 1923) – the first Māori woman to become a registered doctor
  43. Dame Miriam Dell (b. 1924) – New Zealand’s first president of the International Council of Women
  44. Janet Frame (b. 1924) – award-winning author
  45. Eva Rickard (b. 1925) – champion of Māori land rights
  46. Tui Flower (b. 1925) – pioneering food writer and the woman who taught New Zealand to cook
  47. Dame Marie Clay (b. 1926) – founder of global literacy programme Reading Recovery
  48. Yvette Williams (b. 1929) – New Zealand’s first female Olympic medallist
  49. Augusta Wallace (b. 1929) – New Zealand’s first female District Court judge
  50. Mavis Rivers (b. 1929) – Grammy-nominated jazz singer who performed with Frank Sinatra
  51. Dame Te Ātairangikaahu (b. 1931) – the first Māori Queen and champion of Māori language and culture
  52. Dame Catherine Tizard (b. 1931) – Auckland’s first female mayor and New Zealand’s first female Governor-General
  53. Alma Johnson (b. 1931) – New Zealand’s first female television presenter
  54. Elspeth Kennedy (b. 1931) – the first woman elected to the New Zealand Stock Exchange
  55. Whetu Tirikatene-Sullivan (b. 1932) – trailblazing politician and working mother
  56. Dame Margaret Sparrow (b. 1935) – trailblazing doctor and advocate for legal abortions in New Zealand
  57. Margaret Mahy (b. 1936) – world renowned children’s author
  58. Joy Cowley (b. 1936) – New Zealand’s most prolific author and champion of children’s literacy
  59. Pamela Young – pioneering researcher and one of the first women to set foot on the South Pole
  60. Carmen Rupe (b. 1936) – trailblazing activist, entertainer and early champion of LGBTQ rights
  61. Ruia Morrison (b. 1936) – pioneering tennis champion and trailblazer for Māori in sport
  62. Helen Thayer (b. 1937) – world record-setting adventurer and top sportswoman
  63. Dame Judith Binney (b. 1940) – world-renowned historian
  64. Beatrice Tinsley (b. 1941) – world-renowned astrophysicist and trailblazer for women in science
  65. Lynley Dodd (b. 1941) – award-winning author and creator of national icon Hairy Maclary
  66. Merata Mita (b. 1942) – trailblazing filmmaker and first Māori woman to direct a feature film
  67. Dr Penny Jamieson (b. 1942) – the world’s first female Anglican bishop
  68. Dame Silvia Cartwright (b. 1943), Governor-General, first female high court judge
  69. Georgina Te Heuheu (b. 1943) – first Māori woman to gain a law degree and be admitted to High Court
  70. Wendy Pye (b. 1943) – the first woman inducted into the New Zealand Business Hall of Fame
  71. Dame Kiri Te Kanawa (b. 1944) – world-renowned opera singer and the first New Zealander to win a Grammy Award
  72. Wanda Messam (b. 1944) – changed the lives of more than 300 children through foster care
  73. Jennie Goodwin – the first female prime-time newsreader in the Commonwealth
  74. Falema’i Lesā (b. 1946) – pioneering protestor who fought for Samoans’ right to New Zealand citizenship
  75. Dame Naida Glavish (b. 1946) – pioneering champion of te reo Māori
  76. Margaret Wilson (b. 1947) – first female speaker of the house
  77. Keri Hulme (b. 1947) – first New Zealander to win the Booker Prize
  78. Kristine Bartlet – trailblazing campaigner who launched a five-year court battle for equal pay
  79. Suzie Moncrieff (b. 1949) – creator of the World of Wearable art show
  80. Rosemary Askin (b. 1949) – first woman to undertake an Antarctic research programme
  81. Dame Sian Elias (b. 1949) – New Zealand’s first female Chief Justice
  82. Dame Naomi James (b. 1949) – the first woman to sail solo around the world
  83. Helen Clark (b. 1950) – New Zealand’s first elected female Prime Minister and the first woman to run the United Nations development fund
  84. Dame Jenny Shipley (b. 1952) – New Zealand’s first female Prime Minister
  85. Linda Jones (b. 1952) – New Zealand’s first female jockey
  86. Anne Barry (b. 1952) – the first female firefighter in the British Commonwealth
  87. Joan Withers (b. 1953) – trailblazing business leader and professional chairwoman
  88. Jane Campion (b. 1954) – the first woman to win the prestigious Palme D’Or award at the Cannes Film Festival
  89. Luamanuvao Winnie Laban (b. 1955) – the first Pasifika woman to be elected to New Zealand Parliament
  90. Ranjna Patel (b. 1955) – trailblazing business leader
  91. Georgina Beyer (b. 1957) – the world’s first openly transsexual mayor and Member of Parliament
  92. Lyn Provost – New Zealand’s first female auditor-general
  93. Jools Topp (b. 1958) – trailblazing musician, entertainer and activist
  94. Lynda Topp (b. 1958) – trailblazing musician, entertainer and activist
  95. Fran Walsh (b. 1959) – one of New Zealand’s most successful film-makers and co-producer of New Zealand’s highest-earning film franchise
  96. Margaret Brimble (b. 1961) – ground-breaking chemist and champion of women in science
  97. Theresa Gattung (b. 1962) – the first female CEO of a major public company in New Zealand
  98. Ida Malosi – the first female Pasifika judge and champion of Pasifika women in law
  99. Finola Dwyer (b. 1963) – Oscar-nominated film producer
  100. Raelene Castle (b. 1964) – pioneering sports administrator and the first female boss of an NZRU club
  101. Hinewehi Mohi (b. 1964) – the first person to perform the national anthem in te reo at an international test match
  102. Margaret Urlich (b. 1965) – the first female solo artist to record a number one single on the official New Zealand Music Chart
  103. Rebecca Kitteridge (b. 1966) – the first female director of the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service
  104. Ingrid Visser (b. 1966) – world-leading expert in Orca whales and animal welfare advocate
  105. Barbara Kendall (b. 1967) – only woman to compete in 5 Olympic games
  106. Niki Caro (b. 1967) – directed New Zealand’s highest-grossing film at the international box office
  107. Rachel Hunter (b. 1969) – New Zealand’s first supermodel and a champion of natural beauty
  108. Karen Walker (b. 1969) – internationally acclaimed fashion designer
  109. Selina Tusitala Marsh (b. 1971), poet, award-winning poet and champion of Pasifika literature
  110. Annelise Coberger (b. 1971) – the first person from the Southern Hemisphere to medal at the Winter Olympics
  111. Farah Palmer (b. 1972) – World Cup-winning rugby captain and the first woman elected to the New Zealand Rugby board
  112. Monica Galetti (b. 1975) – world renowned chef and founder of top London restaurant Mere
  113. Dr Siouxsie Wiles – ground-breaking microbiologist
  114. Bic Runga (b. 1976) – chart-topping songwriter who sparked the resurgence of New Zealand music
  115. Louise Tu’u (b. 1978) – first New Zealander awarded the Royal Court Theatre international residency
  116. Zoe Bell (b. 1978) – world-renowned stunt woman
  117. Jacinda Ardern (b. 1980), politician, the youngest female head of state in the world and trailblazer for working mums
  118. Rikki Swannell (b. 1980) – New Zealand’s first female rugby commentator
  119. Anna Paquin (b. 1982) – New Zealand’s first Oscar winner
  120. Valerie Adams (b. 1984) – New Zealand’s most successful female athletics champion
  121. Eleanor Catton (b. 1985) – youngest winner of the Man Booker Prize
  122. Hayley Westenra (b. 1987) – New Zealand’s highest-selling solo artist
  123. Parris Goebel (b. 1991) – world hip hop dance champion and world-renowned choreographer
  124. Lydia Ko (b. 1996) – the youngest person ever to become a golf world number one
  125. Lorde (b. 1996) – the first New Zealand solo artist to top the US Billboard chart

The series is part of the 125th suffrage anniversary.

Article Source: NZHerald, September 2018

Image Source: Wikipedia


Tags: NZHerald  suffrage  trailblazers  

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