Thanks to movements like Times Up and #MeToo, women empowerment has taken center stage in 2018. From the world’s female politicians to Hollywood’s glamorous movies stars, more and more women are demanding equality and fairness across the board in their respective industries. But there are several women who you don’t read about in the headlines that are proving themselves as worthy members of traditionally male-dominated industries. Here are some of these inspirational women and our new heroines for 2018.
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Natasha Ravinand – STEM Specialist
Author, entrepreneur and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) specialist Natasha Ravinand is determined to lead by example as far as the science and engineering industry goes. And remarkably, she’s still a teenager in high school! Statistics suggest that globally only 29 percent of workers in these industries are female, but Ravinand is determined to close this gender gap once and for all.
Already one of the 50 most influential high schoolers in the world, Ravinand is also the founder of She Dreams in Code — a nonprofit organization focusing on increasing coding opportunities for female teens. At the start of this year, she wrote and self-published a book — Girls with Dreams: Inspiring Girls to Code and Create in the New Generation — which not only encourages and inspires the younger generation to get involved in the sciences but also, discusses the gender disparity that has long been prevalent within this industry.
Muskan Sethi – Poker Player
While there have been successful female poker players on the scene for decades, the internet has made it much easier for women to get involved in the discipline. From learning how to play poker online to competing in million-dollar tournaments, the digital era has made poker so much more accessible. As a result, women like Muskan Sethi are beginning to take the limelight in this traditionally masculine world.
As India’s first professional female poker player, Sethi is a real ambassador for following your passions and turning them into a profitable career. Her achievements in poker even netted her recognition from India’s President, Ram Nath Kovind, in January this year. And a few months later, she was named as one of the first Indian ambassadors for a global poker brand, PokerStars. Sethi rightfully takes her place alongside other top female poker pros like Annie Duke and Vanessa Selbst, and through her work, she is also tearing down the negative perceptions of card gaming for both men and women in her native country.
Coralie Fargeat – Director
Action movies are traditionally men’s fare. And even though we’ve had some female alternatives over the years like the hilariously camp comic book movie Tank Girl and Hollywood’s take on a female marine in G.I. Jane, there are few female movie directors to break into the genre. Enter Coralie Fargeat!
This French filmmaker and director made her action-horror feature film debut this year and had everyone talking as a result. Revenge (2017) features all the action tropes that lovers of this genre expect: ultraviolence, tense pacing, a thrilling finale and even a main character who comes back from the dead. But what made Revenge so unique was that the action hero lead wasn’t a hero at all. She was a victim of a brutal and bloody attack, and the film follows her as she enacts her revenge on those responsible. With this film, Fargeat managed to spin the male gaze so far that it had nothing to look at anymore.
What do you think of this list? Are there other pioneering women out there who deserve to be recognized?