How These Caribbean Women Dominated Their Industries

The monumental contributions of these three women in their industries have paved the way for young girls to follow. Even though their industries differ, they all have two things in common. All of Caribbean descent and the first in their fields. Let’s explore the lives and impact of Shirley Chisholm, Cicely Tyson, and Naomi Campbell.

Shirley Chisholm

(Source: Time Magazine)

Shirley Chisholm is the first woman to run for president. Shirley Chisholm's mother is from Barbados and father is from Guyana. As the first Black woman to serve in Congress she accomplished a multitude of bold acts in her career. 

Shirley Chisholm lived her life fighting for the rights of women in politics. She was a member of the League of Women Voters and the Bedford-Stuyvesant Political League. Before two of her prominent firsts, she was the first Black American woman to serve in the state legislature in New York. She focused on unemployment benefits for domestic workers and education initiatives. 

After serving in congress for seven years, Shirley Chisholm started how she wanted her legacy to be remembered. She stated “I want history to remember me ... not as the first Black woman to have made a bid for the presidency of the United States, but as a Black woman who lived in the 20th century and who dared to be herself. I want to be remembered as a catalyst for change in America.” 

Her legacy is surely remembered as she is a trailblazer in politics. A pure example for little girls globally that it is ok to be bold in who you are, and push for change.

Cicely Tyson

(Source: Elle)

Cicely Tyson's parents are from Nevis in the West Indies. Cicely Tyson is the first black woman to appear on a daytime tv show, paving the way for women after her.  

As a show stopper in the T.V. and Film industry, she is known for her roles in How To Get Away With Murder, Tyler Perry’s Diary of a Mad Black Women, Sounder, The Rosa Parks Story, and many more.  

Cicely Tyson also was a civil rights activist as a pioneer woman of color in the entertainment industry.  

In 2010, she received the NAACP’s Spingarn Medal for her expansion of women empowerment and black beauty in the media. 

Cicely Tyson is an example to all little girls that a career in entertainment is impactful and can shape the future for generations to come. 

Naomi Campbell

(Source: Hypebae)

Naomi Campbell was born in Streatham, South London, yet is very in tune with Afro-Jamaican roots. As the first black model on the cover of American Vogue, Time Magazine, and French Vogue she is truly an icon! 

Naomi Campbell’s presence goes beyond just representing as an Afro-Jamaican in the fashion world, she also advocates for diversity in the fashion industry. She highlights the discrimination in the industry while saying that she hopes people do not think that diversity in fashion is a trend, like clothes are in for a season and out for a season. She is firm knowing that that's not going to happen.

Beyond being an icon for little girls, Naomi Campbell loves mentoring the youth saying that she believes that children are our future and we must take care of them with maximum effort.

These women’s lives and legacies are great examples of what daring to be the first, being bold, and fighting for what you believe can take you. 

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