You will be hearing many inspiring stories regarding the Suffrage Movement, which is the fight for the right for women to vote. We asked some local women for the rights they are most thankful for and reasons they can feel the importance in their life.
The right to vote has made the biggest difference for me as it enabled my foremothers and today’s women’s rights leaders to fight for all other rights.
— Marsha Weinstein, President, National Collaborative for Women’s History Sites
I am most thankful for the right to be educated. This is the best advantage any woman can have. With education and determination, us women have made a huge difference in the world. I make big efforts to continue learning every day to grow as a leader and to grow my business. The key to success for any woman starts with expanding her knowledge.
— Ingrid Hernández, President of INgrid Design
I’m most thankful for being free from sexual violence. My heart goes to the victims of sexual violence.
The right that’s made the most significant difference for me is equal rights, although because I’m of Hispanic descent, I still today feel discriminated against.
For all women is the right to vote. Make your mark in the world … vote!
— Yamilca Rodriguez, Founder of the Archetype Method
I think voting rights were helpful, but educational access and the right to work for women are the keys to independence. I am so very grateful to live in a society where I am freely accepted and competitive in an industry still dominated by men. Financial opportunities have afforded me the ability to shape my personal life as needed and know that I can provide for myself and my children. I was inspired and fortunate to have a mother who preceded me on this path.
— Stacye Love, Owner of Stacye Love Construction
The right to follow in my grandmother, Dolores Delahanty’s footsteps is the first thought that comes to mind. She fought for our rights at the ground level. Every day when I sign a check, take out a credit card in my name, vote, receive equal pay, the right to choose, I think of my grandmother. She taught me to be strong, to take nothing for granted, and to fight for those who are disenfranchised.
The right that has made the biggest difference to me is the right to own property. I just bought a house in the Louisville’s West End as a single female. To invest in my own wealth and to perhaps have the opportunity to offer generational wealth to my future daughters is very important to me. When I made the choice to own property in the Portland neighborhood where my family emigrated to from Ireland in 1880s is the first time I felt real freedom. I cherish the right to own my own piece of land and call it home.
— Katy Delahanty Outreach Director, Louisville Visual Art
Being in the realm of politics, I cannot imagine that just 100 years ago women were not able to vote. The fight of the suffrage movement is something all American women should be eternally grateful for. This is why even now it is important that every woman vote and we teach our daughters to do the same.
— Ashli Watts, President and CEO, Kentucky Chamber of Commerce
I’m very thankful for the work done by women in the labor movement – those who organized and advocated for dignified working conditions and fair pay. But we owe a great debt to the women who, in the face of considerable resistance, fought to secure workplace rights that paved the way for me and other women to lead.
I work for a nonprofit whose social impact hinges on a partnership with a functional, by-the-people government. Women’s right to be engaged in the political process through voting and holding office has influenced my work in such textured ways that it’s impossible to fully trace. I think many women would agree such a natural right – the ability to speak out, be heard, and hold power in the system that makes governing decisions – is a fundamental part of a just society.
— Judy Lambeth, President and CEO, Maryhurst
The right to vote has made the biggest difference for me and while I am regularly disappointed in the choices presented I am thankful that the vote of a woman counts as much as the vote of any man because by voting we influence the direction of our community and country.
— Sadiqa N. Reynolds, Esq., President and CEO, Louisville Urban League
I am most thankful for the 1st amendment to the Bill of Rights; specifically the freedom of speech. Without this liberty, there would be very limited avenue for change, individualism, sharing of knowledge, thoughts, and opinions. It is the most basic freedom, yet the most impactful, so deserving of its place as amendment number one. Without this right, women could not have fought for suffrage, control of their bodies, equality. We continue to use this right today in our fight for equal pay, fair family leave, and so much more.
— Soon Bahrami MD, Section Chief and Associate Professor of Dermatopathology