Is it me or has Time magazine’s list of the 100 Most Influential People only gotten better over the years? In fact, this year’s list, which highlights individuals from various fields including everything from politics, activism, and the arts, appears to be more diverse than ever. I was excited to see it includes a good amount of women of color from Cardi B to my personal favorite — Emma Gonzalez — and more. This year, as well as 2017, has been an incredible display of female power and resilience and this has especially been the case for many WOC.
Each individual included in this list proved to be influential in some shape or form and each includes a well-written write-up from a colleague in a similar field who is familiar — in many cases admires — their work. Here’s look at some of the amazing and badass WOC who made it to this year’s list!
I wasn’t the least bit surprised to see the Dominican-Trinidadian rapper on this list. Cardi has not only broken records — her debut album went gold minutes after being released — but her hustle and hard grind really resonates with fans. Despite the fame, she’s managed to stay true to who she is and refuses to “white-wash” or “tone-down” her image.
“When I first came up, people said, ‘She’s too edgy.’ But I can do Shakespeare in the Park! You can’t judge me based on where I come from or the colloquialisms that I speak with, because that’s who I am. And when you are cool with who you are, no one can use it against you,” actress Taraji P. Henson wrote. “I identify with Cardi B, because she knows that too. The first time I went on her Instagram page, she was so raw, coming at you, like whoa! She used words like “shmoney” and “shmoves,” and she talked openly about being a former stripper. And she was proud of it — like, So what, I was on the pole, look what I parlayed that into? When she showed her soul like that, I hit the Follow button. I felt like she had the voice of the people, you know what I mean?”