Her’s Day Thursday

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I’ve got such a cool chick to tell you about for today’s HtH!

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Jacqueline Cochran (born May 11, 1906 in Pensacola, FL) was an amazing pilot. Check out her accomplishments:

  • First woman to compete in the MacRobertson Air Race (1934)
  • Only woman to compete in the Bendix race (1937) (Jackie also helped Amelia Earhart to get the race to allow women to enter.)
  • First woman to fly a bomber across the Atlantic Ocean
  • Five-time winner of the Harmon Trophy for the most outstanding woman pilot in the world
  • Recipient of the Distinguished Service Medal and the Distinguished Flying Cross

 

By 1938, she was considered the best female pilot in the United States! She earned the nickname “Speed Queen” and no other pilot went as fast, far, or high in all of aviation history than Cochran!

Jackie Cochran

Jackie was also a part of Wings for Britain, an organization that sent aircrafts built in the US to Britain. While in Britain, Jackie volunteered as a pilot in the Royal Air Force. She worked for the British Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) which recruited women pilots in America and took them to England to join the ATA.

 

Among Cochran’s accomplishments, she also helped start the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) and became its director. Cochran’s work in WASP included training hundreds of women pilots in Sweetwater, TX. Jackie was also a sponsor of the Mercury 13 Program (remember that?)!

Jackie COchran Tim

Thank you, Jackie, for being an awesome inspiration to girls everywhere!

Her’s Day Thursday

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Typically, I highlight a lady that has made a contribution to the world on HDT. However, last night as I was scrolling through Facebook, I saw this video. I thought it was absolutely wonderful. Not only does it show the disrespect and misogyny that, sadly, runs rampant today, but also puts those behaviors and attitudes into perspective.

Compelling, right? We need to raise up our sons to respect women and raise our girls to demand respect. Let’s change this world for the better, people!

(Happy birthday, Dad! Thanks for being an awesome father and raising my sisters and I to be strong and confident! You’re amazing! Love you!)

Her’s Day Thursday

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My sister is in grad school right now and, in one of her classes, she has to read books of different genres and write book analyses’ on them. The other day, I walked by the kitchen table and saw this:

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Which got me thinking, who are the Mercury 13 women? I’ve never heard of them, but they sound like some awesome ladies! Here’s what I found out!

 

Back in 1960, William Randolph Lovelace II (the creator of the tests used to determine whether or not a man could become an astronaut) wondered how women would fare under the same tests. Together with Geraldyn “Jerrie” Cobb, they started their research.

 

Jerrie Cobb, gassing up the shuttle.

Jerrie Cobb, gassing up the shuttle.

Cobb and Lovelace looked over 700 records of female pilots in order to find candidates and finally found 32 women who met the specifications. These women were put through rigorous and, at times, invasive tests that calculated their ability to withstand the stressors of space.

One of the M13 Women riding a stationery bike to test her endurance.

One of the M13 Women riding a stationery bike to test her endurance.

Of the 32 women tested, 13 passed the first phase of testing and were advanced to the next phase. Those women were:

Myrtle Cagle

Jerrie Cobb

Janet Dietrich

Marion Dietrich

Wally Funk

Sarah Gorelick (later Ratley)

Janey Hart (née Briggs)

Jean Hixson

Rhea Hurrle (later Allison, then Woltman)

Gene Nora Stumbough (later Jessen)

Irene Leverton

Jerri Sloan (née Hamilton, later Truhill)

Bernice Steadman (née Trimble)

Eight of the surviving Mercury 13 Women

Eight of the surviving Mercury 13 Women

Because of family commitments, not all women were able to travel to Oklahoma City, OK for additional testing. Some of the women were later asked to go to Pensacola, FL for more testing (Phase III) but received a telegram a few days before the start date, informing them that the training had been cancelled.

Immediately, Jerrie Cobb flew to D.C. to lobby for the right to resume the testing. However, she was met with much resistance. After committee hearings and even letters written to the President of the United States, the program was never reinstated. Though some may see Jerrie Cobb’s fight as lost, it paved the way for future female astronauts like Sally Ride, the first American woman in space.

Jerrie Cobb

Jerrie Cobb

So kudos to you, Mercury 13 women, for having The Right Stuff!

Her’s Day Thursday

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Hello, all! I recently read an article about an amazing woman who almost left this earth without her amazing story told! I want everyone to know about this kick-a lady!

 

Sigrid Green, born December 3, 1920 in Darwen, Lancashire, England, joined the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force in 1942. Her mother was Norwegian so Sigrid spoke and understood {INSERT}. With the WAAF found out, they dispatched her to German-occupied Norway. She travelled there in a submarine (she was too scared to fly) and, because women were not allowed on subs, pretended to be a man.

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Her task was to report information about a heavy water factory under construction by the Germans for energy purposes. Because of her, the Allies were able to launch a sabotage attack by the “Heroes of Telemark”. When her mission was completed, she walked all the way from Norway to Sweden when she escaped in the empty bomb bay of an aircraft.

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Sigrid’s service did not stop there. She continued in the war effort at *Bletchley Park where the Nazi’s codes were broken with the help of Enigma machines. Sigrid listened to Morse code from the German High Command for almost 15 hours at a time!

Even though Sigrid’s work was vital to the war effort, she kept her part in it hidden for many years. It wasn’t until a year before her death in 2011 that she broke her silence. She said in an interview, “It was a horrible time and I don’t enjoy thinking about it. I had kept quiet, but I spoke out because I watched a programme on television about a girl who worked as an agent in Belgium.”

 

A year before her death, Sigrid was finally recognized and given a commendation for her service. She received the Bletchley Park Badge and The Freedom of Bletchley Park honor. Sigrid Green truly was a tough lady with an even tougher job.

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(*Sidebar: There’s a British television show called The Bletchley Circle all about the women code breakers! Check it out on Netflix!)

 

Her’s Day Thursday

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Normally on Her’s Day Thursday, I talk about a BAMF of a woman that changed society’s views of their gender and made waves in the fight for women’s rights. Today, I’m going to talk about two companies that are also working to help women of all shapes, sizes, and colors feel like the queens they are and empower them with ferocity.

While scrolling through my Facebook news feed the other day, I came across this amazing video from Dove. Its part of their “Choose Beautiful” campaign. A social experiment was performed in which Dove hung two signs above doors. One sign read: “Average” and the other, “Beautiful”. They set up hidden cameras to see which door women would walk through and created this video:

What door would you choose?

Retailer Lane Bryant also caught my attention this week. After Victoria’s Secret came out with their “Perfect Body” spread, the backlash was palatable. Who decides what constitutes a “perfect body” anyhow? Certainly not VS! Lane Bryant took matters into their own hands and came out with their own ad, celebrating EVERY body with their Cacique line of lingerie.

lane-bryant-im-no-angel

The LB site says it all: “The women who wear Cacique know that sexy comes in many shapes and sizes. They’re no angels—and they own it. Join the women who are redefining sexy by posting your personal statement of confidence using the hashtag, #ImNoAngel.”

What do you think of the ad?

What companies have you seen that make women feel beautiful? Are there any you feel could be working harder? What would you do to change it? Tell me in the comments below!

Her’s Day Thursday

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Today’s wonderful woman is Hedy Lamarr! Don’t know the name? You should!

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Hedy Lamarr was born Hedwig Eva Maria Kiesler in 1914 in Vienna, Austria. In the 1920’s, Hedy was discovered as an actress by a producer who promptly brought her with him to Berlin. Lamar starred in several popular films including Comrade X (with Clark Gable) and Come Live With Me (with Jimmy Stewart).

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Acting, however, was her second love. Her first love was science. In the 1940’s, Hedy started working with radio wave technologies. She and composer George Antheil co-invented the technology for spread spectrum and frequency hopping. This technology has been incorporated into today’s technologies such as Wi-Fi, CDMA, and Bluetooth tech! Hedy was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2014.

Hedy proved she was not just another pretty face, but had brains to boot!

Her’s Day Thursday

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Sorry about no post yesterday, folks. Oklahoma decided to kick off spring with tornadoes. So my family and I were hunkered down in the bathroom as an EF1 tornado blew over the top of our home. It may not sound like much, but it ripped apart a school and flipped a semi. I even saw an uprooted tree on the way to the grocery store today! So, yeah, I didn’t have time (or energy or focus) to blog yesterday. But, enough of that. On to today’s kick-a la-day!

I was scrolling through Pinterest the other day and saw an amazing stream of photos. No, not from the set of the new Star Wars flick, but of a female member of the European Parliament taking her young daughter to work with her. That member is Licia Ronzulli.

licia

 

 

A member of the New Forza Italia party, Licia started bringing her daughter, Vittoria, to parliamentarian sessions when she was only 6 weeks old. {Sidebar, how beautiful is that name?!} Ronzulli’s photos of her and her child have brought the question of mandatory paid maternity leave for working mothers back into conversations (one that the U.S. desperately needs to discuss!). 

She is also a member of the Commission of Women Rights and Gender Equality and on the Subcommittee on Human Rights. In 2009, Ronzulli was elected to the position of Vice-Chairman of the Parliamentary Joint Africa-Caribbean-Pacific-UE Assembly. This group promotes human rights and democracy.

This hard-working momma is definitely an awesome gal in my book!

 

Do you know of any other women you’d like to see on Her’s Day Thursday? Tell me in the comments below!