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Utah Women are Visionary

January 1, 2021

As we celebrate the 125th anniversary of Utah statehood this year, we’ll highlight women each month who shaped our state. In January, we’re featuring visionary women—who could see better days in the future and worked to get us there.

Fanny Brooks was the first Jewish woman to make her home in Utah. Energetic, diplomatic, and resilient, she was a successful businesswoman in Salt Lake City. When Brigham Young forbade Mormons from doing businesses with those of other faiths in 1868, Brooks wasn’t willing to give up. She demanded a meeting with Young and convinced him to let her business continue. Read more here, and find other stories below!

Click here to download or print the calendar for yourself!

  • January 1Ann Valentine was born on this day in 1932. She became a stellar tennis coach and athletic director who promoted the growth of women’s sports. Learn more here!
  • January 2Alice Merrill Horne was born on this day in 1868. A talented artist and educator, she started Utah’s art program when she was elected to the state legislature in 1898. Did you catch the shoutout to her vision for Utah and the arts in the #Thrive125 celebration on tv? Learn more here!
  • January 4 – Utah turns 125 years old today! When Utah entered the Union in 1896, it became the 45th state and the 3rd to include equal suffrage for women citizens in its constitution. That was thanks to decades of suffrage activism in Utah—read more here about the constitutional convention debates on women’s right to vote.
  • January 6 – On this day in 1870, leading Latter-day Saint women gathered at a protest meeting voted to demand suffrage of territorial leaders. They never did…
  • January 7 – Geneal Anderson was born on this day in 1952.
  • January 10 – On this day in 1917, the National Woman’s Party began the first-ever protest in front of the White House. “Silent Sentinels” held signs urging President Woodrow Wilson to support a federal amendment for women’s suffrage, and many were jailed for this peaceful protest. Read more here about Lovern Robertson and Minnie Quay, two Silent Sentinels from Utah.
  • January 15 – Juanita Brooks was born on this day in 1898
  • January 24 – Becky Lockhart became the first female Speaker of the Utah House of Representatives on this day in 2011. She was a respected leader who did this
  • January 31 – Mary Woolley Chamberlain was born on this day in 1870. In 1911, Kanab elected her and 4 other women to run the town. This all-female town council made its mark and showed that women are “perfectly able to carry on the work” of government. Read more about their service here.