Women’s History Month is a poignant time to reflect on the monumental contributions of women worldwide, particularly the trailblazing American women who have played a pivotal role in shaping our nation’s narrative. As we near our nation’s 250th anniversary, America250 is proud to honor the incredible American women who have blazed trails, shattered ceilings, and left an indelible mark on our nation’s history.

The tapestry of our national history is interwoven with the achievements of women who’ve not only been the architects of change but also the steadfast pillars of our society. From creating the first national flag, championing civil rights, shaping cultural narratives, and serving in the armed forces, women have been our nation’s backbone and driving force since 1776.

In anticipation of our nation’s Semiquincentennial in 2026, I am honored to shine a light on the remarkable women who have carved pathways through adversity and opened doors for generations to follow. Their stories are a testament to the indomitable spirit that propels our nation forward—women like Sally Ride, who breached the final frontier as the first American woman in space, and Bessie Coleman, who soared above racial and gender barriers to become a pioneering aviator.

Reflecting on my own journey, from overseeing the efforts to place a portrait of a woman on U.S. currency for the first time in over a century to founding EMPOWERMENT 2026, which facilitates the physical recognition of historical American women in classrooms and public spaces across the country, I am constantly inspired by the women who have shaped our past and continue to mold our future. In fact, both Sally Ride and Bessie Coleman are currently featured on U.S. quarters as part of the Circulating Collectible Coin Redesign Act of 2020, something I championed for almost five years following my term as Treasurer of the United States and with the help of my fellow Commissioner, Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman.

These experiences have shaped my understanding of the pivotal role women play in our history and reinforced my commitment to ensuring America250 celebrates and recognizes the breadth of women’s contributions. As Chair of the United States Semiquincentennial Commission, I look forward to providing a platform to amplify the voices of women who’ve been instrumental in our nation’s story, ensuring their legacies inspire future generations.

The legacy of women like Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Ella Baker, who stood unwaveringly for equality and justice, and the valor of Margaret Corbin and Deborah Sampson, who disguised themselves as men to join the fight for independence. Their contributions exemplify the courage and resilience that push our nation forward and inspire new generations of women to reach even higher.

The work is not over, as we continue to see women breaking barriers before us. On the Olympic stage, Suni Lee made history as the first Asian American gymnast to win gold. Condoleezza Rice was the first female African-American Secretary of State and the first woman to serve as national security advisor. And this year, Lily Gladstone became the first Native American person to receive both a Golden Globe nomination and an award for Best Actress.

Women’s History Month is a celebration of these milestones and the everyday contributions of women across our nation. As Chair of America250, I am committed to highlighting the unsung stories that have shaped our collective journey. It’s my hope that as we commemorate this significant milestone, we can inspire a new chapter in our history where every American feels empowered to contribute to our nation’s legacy.

Wishing you an inspiring Women’s History Month!

Rosie Rios

Chair, America250

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