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The Key Players

Key Players

Read stories of Utah women who have improved their communities in many ways. Illustrations of 50 Utah women’s advocates by Brooke Smart. These illustrations are on display in the traveling exhibit “Utah Women Making History” at locations throughout Utah.

Seraph Young Ford Seraph Young Ford, First Woman to Vote with Equal Suffrage A schoolteacher who voted on her way to work Read More Hannah Kaaepa Hannah Kaaepa, Advocate of Hawaiian Women's Rights Traveled with Utah suffragists to Washington, D.C. where she spoke to the National Council of Women Read More Emmeline B. Wells Emmeline B. Wells, A Thinking Woman Utah’s leading suffragist who met four U.S. presidents and edited the Woman's Exponent for 40 years Read More Emily S. Richards Emily S. Richards, A Believer in Suffrage A standout speaker and public face of Utah suffrage who co-organized the Utah Woman Suffrage Association Read More Emma McVicker Emma McVicker, Utah's First Female Superintendent of Schools An advocate of quality education for both children and their mothers Read More Dr. Martha Hughes Cannon Dr. Martha Hughes Cannon, First Female State Senator A trailblazer in medicine, politics, and public health reform Read More Zitkála-Šá Zitkála-Šá, The Red Bird Activist A Dakota (Sioux) woman who lived in Utah and used her talents to help win American Indians their civil rights Read More Mary Isabella Hales Horne Mary Isabella Hales Horne, A General Among Women A prominent leader in many organizations who never missed an opportunity to vote Read More Susan B. Anthony Susan B. Anthony, A Champion of Utah One of America's best-known suffragists who formed strong ties with Utah’s suffragists Read More Sarah M. Kimball Sarah M. Kimball, A Woman's Rights Woman Founder of the precursor to the LDS Relief Society organization and president of the Utah Woman Suffrage Association Read More Franklin S. Richards Franklin S. Richards, A Defender of Equal Suffrage Champion of women's suffrage at 1895 Utah State Convention Read More Fanny Brooks Fanny Brooks, Always the Business Woman The first Jewish woman to settle in Utah who gained prominence as a successful and savvy business owner Read More Jennie Froiseth Jennie Froiseth, A Passionate Suffragist and Anti-Polygamist Dedicated her life to helping women embrace their social and civil powers Read More Mae Timbimboo Parry Mae Timbimboo Parry, Historian and Matriarch of the Northwestern Band of the Shoshone Corrected the telling of the Bear River Massacre, the largest massacre of Native peoples in the United States Read More Alice Kasai Alice Kasai, Believer in the Oneness of Humankind Advocate for Japanese Americans' rights and international peace Read More Kanab Town Council Kanab Town Council, The Petticoat Government First all-female town council in Utah and third in the U.S. Read More Mignon Barker Richmond Mignon Barker Richmond, A Community Organizer with Heart A human rights activist who helped raise the children in her community Read More Governor Olene Walker Governor Olene Walker, Utah's First (and only) Female Governor A passionate education supporter and politician known for her grit, charisma, and intelligence Read More Barbara G. Toomer Barbara G. Toomer, A powerhouse in the disability rights movement Jailed at least 35 times due to her activism for legal protections and public accommodations Read More Ivy Baker Priest Ivy Baker Priest, A natural organizer with political ambitions Served as the U.S. Treasurer under President Eisenhower Read More Helen Papanikolas Helen Papanikolas, Historian and Folklorist Devoted her life to expanding the story of Utah's people Read More Becky Lockhart Becky Lockhart, First female Speaker of the Utah House of Representatives A loyal and committed state legislator Read More The Silent Sentinels The Silent Sentinels, Lovern Robertson & Minnie Quay Utah Suffragists Who Picketed the White House Read More Chipeta Chipeta, Wise and Influential Advisor Negotiated several treaties with the U.S. government Read More Annie Dodge Wauneka Annie Dodge Wauneka, Public Health Promoter Navajo Nation leader and public health activist Read More Elise Furer Musser Elise Furer Musser, A Lifelong Advocate for Peace & Social Welfare The only woman in U.S. delegations to international peace conferences in the 1930s Read More George Sutherland George Sutherland, U.S. Supreme Court Justice, U.S. Senator and Congressman, and Women’s Rights Advocate Supporter of Susan B. Anthony & Equal Rights Amendments Read More Charlotte Godbe Kirby Charlotte Godbe Kirby, Champion of "The Women's Era" The first Utah woman (and the first woman with voting rights) to speak to an audience of national suffragists Read More Esther Eggertsen Peterson Esther Eggertsen Peterson, Labor, Commerce, and Women’s Rights Advocate Highest-ranking woman in the Kennedy administration who worked with several subsequent U.S. presidents Read More Maud May Babcock Maud May Babcock, Utah's First Lady of Theater A beloved teacher, physical fitness enthusiast, and actress Read More Incarnación Florez Incarnación Florez, A Trusted Healer and Friend A curandera who provided spiritual comfort and physical relief to many Read More Ah-Yuen Ah-Yuen, A Rare, Historical Find Owned a “China Shop” in Park City Read More Reva Beck Bosone Reva Beck Bosone, Utah's First Woman Judge & Congresswoman Media host and women's rights advocate Read More Maude Adams Maude Adams, A Skilled Actress & Production Artist An inventor and the most famous and highest-paid actress of her time Read More Violet Bear Allen Violet Bear Allen, Artisan and Community Supporter Her craftsmanship was an expression of her heart Read More Alice Merrill Horne Alice Merrill Horne, Arts Advocate, Suffragist, & Legislator Founded the nation's first state-run arts agency Read More Amy Brown Lyman Amy Brown Lyman, A Social Worker and Leader Educated women about health and nutrition Read More Elizabeth Taylor Elizabeth Taylor, Newspaper Woman and Activist President of Western Federation of Colored Women & editor of Utah Plain Dealer Read More Anna Belle Weakley Anna Belle Weakley, The Queen of Ogden's 25th Street Community builder and owner of the Porters and Waiters Club Read More Edith Melendez Edith Melendez, Defender of Justice and Equity Served as the vice president of state SOCIO in social action Read More Esther Landa Esther Landa, Women's, Children's, and Anti-Nuclear War Activist President of the National Council of Jewish Women Read More Alberta Henry Alberta Henry, Champion of Racial and Educational Equity President of the Salt Lake NAACP for 12 years Read More Claire Ferguson Claire Ferguson, Deputy Sheriff of Salt Lake County One of the first female deputy sheriffs in the nation Read More Lucy Heppler Lucy Heppler, A Rural Advocate President of her town suffrage association in Sevier County Read More Geneal Anderson Geneal Anderson, Leader of the Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah Helped enact the Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah Constitution and protested nuclear war and testing Read More Ellen Selu Ellen Selu, Voice of Utah's Polynesians Host for 20+ years of a Hawaiian radio show Read More Katherine Fenton Nutter Katherine Fenton Nutter, Utah's Cattle Queen A telegrapher, homesteader, and rancher Read More Lucille Bankhead Lucille Bankhead, Defender of African-American Rights Protested at the State Capitol with her Arts & Crafts Club Read More Ann Valentine Ann Valentine, Coach & Athletic Director An award-winning coach who fostered women’s athletics Read More Marjorie Redding Christiansen Marjorie Redding Christiansen, Pilot & Cub Scout Leader One of the first women in U.S. history to fly American military aircraft Read More Ruth May Fox Ruth May Fox, Equal Rights Proponent and Poet Spoke for women's suffrage throughout Utah and helped draft petition given to the 1895 Utah Constitutional Convention delegates Read More Desdemona Stott Beeson Desdemona Stott Beeson, Foremost Utah Woman in Mining “The practical nuts and bolts” of the operation Read More Alice Louise Reynolds Alice Louise Reynolds, Advocate for women’s opportunities First female to be a full college professor at Brigham Young University Read More Mary Willis Martin Critchlow Mary Willis Martin Critchlow, Founder of the YWCA Utah A generous philanthropist who advanced opportunity for women through the YWCA. Read More Eurithe K. LaBarthe Eurithe K. LaBarthe, Author of the “High Hat Law” Elected to the Utah's first state legislature Read More Georgia Lathouris Mageras “Magerou” Georgia Lathouris Mageras “Magerou”, The Greek Midwife Never lost a mother or baby Read More Eliza R. Snow Eliza R. Snow, Zion's Poetess An organizer of women and a prolific poet Read More Sarah E. Anderson Sarah E. Anderson, One of the First Women Elected to the Utah State Legislature Tried voting before women's voting rights were deemed legal Read More Betty Miller Betty Miller, Pioneering Pilot First woman to fly solo across the Pacific Ocean. Read More Kuniko Terasawa Kuniko Terasawa, Writer, Editor, Typesetter, and Publisher Ran a Japanese newspaper for over 75 years Read More Sister Augusta Sister Augusta, St. Mary’s Academy Founder Started Catholic education in Utah Read More Natacha Rambova Natacha Rambova, Costume Designer and Egyptologist Noted for her unique costume designs and academic scholarship Read More Cornelia Paddock Cornelia Paddock, Avid Suffragist & Anti-Polygamist Helped found the Utah Ladies’ Anti-Polygamy Society & Woman’s Home Association Read More Pop Chalee Pop Chalee, The Blue Flower Artist Taos Pueblo muralist with Utah ties Read More Anna Campbell Bliss Anna Campbell Bliss, Visual Artist and Architect Her work explored the overlap between art, mathematics and science Read More Elizabeth DeLong Elizabeth DeLong, Leader in the Utah Deaf Community First Deaf female president of the Utah Association of the Deaf Read More Juanita Brooks Juanita Brooks, Famed Utah & Mormon Historian Well-known for her accounting of the Mountain Meadows Massacre Read More Elizabeth Pugsley Hayward Elizabeth Pugsley Hayward, Legislator, Delegate, and Advocate for Children's Rights Led Utah's ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1919. Read More Margaret Zane Witcher Cherdron Margaret Zane Witcher Cherdron, Presidential Elector and National Woman's Party Leader A county clerk, leading suffragist, and businesswoman Read More Margene Bullcreek Margene Bullcreek, Skull Valley Goshute Anti-Nuclear Activist Skull Valley Goshute Anti-Nuclear Activist Read More Ruby Timms Price Ruby Timms Price, Lifelong Educator and Organizer First Black teacher in Utah Read More Dr. Shuping Wang Dr. Shuping Wang, Fearless Whistleblower and Public Health Advocate Punished for alerting Chinese authorities about an HIV/AIDS epidemic Read More Dorothy Poynton-Hill Dorothy Poynton-Hill, Youngest Olympic Medalist A teenager who set records in diving. Read More Elnora Dudley Elnora Dudley, Emancipation Day Queen A talented pianist with a key role in Utah's 1898 Emancipation Day celebration. Read More Jane Manning James Jane Manning James, Advocate for Equality in the Church of Jesus Christ One of the first Black women in Utah. Read More Helen Foster Snow Helen Foster Snow, Journalist and Nobel Peace Prize Nominee Documented the Chinese Revolution and built a "friendship bridge" with the Chinese people. Read More Minerva Teichert Minerva Teichert, A Storyteller Through Art Teichert's murals elevated women and western life and also depicted key LDS religious scenes. Read More Jean King Jean King, Member of the first Black women’s singing group recurring on television. Launched a singing career that took her across oceans, into recording studios and onto the stage alongside superstars like Ray Charles, Diana Ross & Bobby Darrin. Read More May Swenson May Swenson, A Great Modern Poet Best known for deeply contemplative poems about life and the LGBTQ+ experience. Read More Maud Fitch Maud Fitch, World War I Ambulance Driver Earned the French Cross for her courageous service as a volunteer ambulance driver in WWI. Read More Lydia Simbulan Concepcion Lydia Simbulan Concepcion, Chemical Engineer & Assistant State Chemist First Filipina to work for Utah Department of Agriculture Read More Leticia Simbulan Azarcon Leticia Simbulan Azarcon, Community Organizer & Clinical Dietician Helped Establish the first Philipino-American Association of Utah Read More Milagros Belarmino Baldazo Milagros Belarmino Baldazo, Educator & Community Organizer Coordinated the first Asian Festival in Utah Read More Delores Blair Silva Velasquez-Ortega Delores Blair Silva Velasquez-Ortega Vice president of SOCIO and the first female director of the Utah Office of Hispanic Affairs. Read More Cristina Caputo Cristina Caputo, Grocer, Gardener, and Community Gatherer Italian immigrant who ran a westside SLC grocery store that inspired Caputo's deli. Read More Nettie Grimes Gregory Nettie Grimes Gregory, Youth Advocate & Community Organizer Raised funds to build a community center on SLC's west side. Read More Maria Cardenas Maria Cardenas, Latina Business Owner and Community Gatherer Founder of iconic Red Iguana restaurant Read More Bobby Florez Bobby Florez, First Latina Legislator and Community Volunteer Worked to make sure no child was left without a home Read More