U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris


Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas; Credit: Stenbocki maja (CC BY-NC 2.0)


Swati Rathore; Credit: IANS


Despina Chatzivassiliou-Tsovilis

Firsts for Women: January 2021

Zonta International celebrates “firsts for women” in all different sectors in countries and communities around the world.

Looking back on the first month of 2021, we acknowledge the following women:

  • Kamala Harris – first woman, first Black and first Asian-American vice president of the United States
  • Kaja Kallas – first woman prime minister of Estonia
  • Jennifer King – first Black woman with an NFL coaching job as assistant running backs coach for the Washington football team
  • Swati Rathore – first woman pilot to lead flypast on Republic Day in India
  • Janet Yellen – first female treasury secretary in U.S. history
  • Eileen M. Vélez Vega, P.E. – first female secretary of the Department of Transportation and Public Works in Puerto Rico
  • Bianca Smith – first Black woman to coach in professional baseball in the U.S. as a Minor League coach in the Red Sox organization
  • Despina Chatzivassiliou-Tsovilis – first woman ever elected as secretary-general of the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly
  • Avril Haines – first woman director of National Intelligence in the United States
  • Maya Weug - first woman driver to join the Ferrari Driver Academy

As an organization that has fought for gender equality for more than 100 years, Zonta International believes it is important to celebrate and honor women who are making. Each month, we will recognize women who have broken the glass ceiling and set an example for future generations to come.

Do you know of a first for women moment that should be recognized? Share with us at pr@zonta.org.

1 FEBRUARY 2021