Senator Kelly Ayotte is the junior senator from New Hampshire and has devoted her life to public service. She currently is the only Republican in the New Hampshire delegation and is the youngest of the 20 female Senators currently serving in Congress. Prior to joining the legislature, Ayotte worked as a prosecutor for the New Hampshire Department of Justice. She then was appointed as the Attorney General of New Hampshire, becoming the first woman to hold the seat. Ayotte has been very influential in the Senate and has worked with politicians from both parties to create workable terrorist detention policies. As part of her strong commitment to reducing wasteful spending, Ayotte has also led efforts to save over $1 billion in the Pentagon’s budget. She has been considered one of the most influential women in the GOP, a leading voice in Congress on national security issues, and has been referred to as an “emerging force in Congress”.
Ayotte earned her B.A. from Pennsylvania State University and J.D. from Villanova University School of Law.
Senator Elizabeth Dole has been an important figure in politics for many years, serving as the Secretary of Transportation under President Ronald Reagan and the Secretary of Labor under President George H.W. Bush. She then became President of the American Red Cross. In 2003, Dole served as North Carolina’s first female Senator. During her time in the legislature, Dole was the first woman to serve as chairwoman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee. After leaving Congress, Dole established the Elizabeth Dole Foundation, which is dedicated to helping caregivers of wounded warriors.
Dole earned her B.A. from Duke University, M.A. from Harvard Graduate School of Education, and J.D. from Harvard Law School.
Photo credit: U.S. Navy photo, John F. Williams
Kavita Ramdas is the Executive Director of Stanford University’s Program on Social Entrepreneurship at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies. She formerly served as the President & CEO of the Global Fund for Women. During Ramdas’ tenure at the Global Fund for Women, she more than tripled the Fund’s assets and global presence to over 160 countries, and shepherded the creation of the Now or Never Fund, which seeks to increase women’s participation on international issues. Ramdas served on the Global Development Program Advisory Panel at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Advisory Council to the Asian University for Women, and the African Women Millennium Initiative on Poverty and Human Rights. She is a board member at the Aspen Institute’s Henry Crown Fellow’s Program and served on the Women’s Funding Network board.
Ramdas earned her B.A. from Mount Holyoke College and M.P.A. from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University.
Photo credit: World Economic Forum
President Mary Robinson served as the seventh, and the first female, President of Ireland from 1990-1997. She served as the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights from 1997-2002. After serving the UN, President Robinson formed Realizing Rights: the Ethical Globalization Initiative. The organization fostered equitable trade, promoted the right to health and worked to strengthen women’s leadership. Currently, Robinson serves as the President of the Mary Robinson Foundation – Climate Justice. She is also the Chair of the Institute for Human Rights and Business and the International Institute for Environment and Development, founding member and Chair of the Council of Women World Leaders, and Chancellor of the University of Dublin. In March 2013, she also became the Special Envoy of the UN Secretary General to the Great Lakes region of Africa. Among her many awards and recognitions, she was awarded the Sydney Peace Prize in 2002, Amnesty International’s Ambassador of Conscious Award for her work in promoting human rights in 2004, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Obama in 2009.
Robinson earned degrees from the University of Dublin (Trinity College) and King’s Inns Dublin, and she earned her LL.M. from Harvard Law School, to which she won a fellowship in 1967.
Photo credit: World Economic Forum