On Wednesday, TIME magazine released its annual list of 100 people the magazines deems the “most influential.” This year, the list includes a number of women who have made waves in their fields, many of whom haven’t gotten as much shine as they deserve. Here’s a look at some of the most inspiring women featured in this year’s TIME 100.
Now an Academy-Award nominated actress, Yalitza Aparicio was preparing to become a teacher when she landed the role of Cleo in the Netflix film Roma. Aparicio, a 25-year-old from Mexico, was profiled for TIME by Roma director Alfonso Cuarón. “She focuses on being a force of change and empowerment for indigenous women, embracing the symbolic value of what she has done and carrying that responsibility with dignity and grace,” Cuarón wrote. Roma was Aparicio’s first time acting professionally, but it is unlikely to be her last. (Photo via Amy Sussman/Getty Images)
Last summer, actress Indya Moore wowed audiences with her lively and moving portrayal of Angel in FX’s show Pose. Moore, 24, has spoken openly and frankly about transgender rights and the rights of women of color throughout her newfound TV fame. Janet Mock, a transgender activist and a writer, director, and producer on Pose, wrote the TIME 100 profile of Moore. “In Indya, I see elements of our foremothers: the beauty of Sir Lady Java and Tracey Africa Norman, the brazenness of Miss Major and Sylvia Rivera, and the indelible warmth and spirit of Marsha P. Johnson,” Mock writes. “She is the living embodiment of our wildest dreams finally coming true. (Photo via Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
Filmmaker dream hampton directed the hugely important docuseries Surviving R. Kelly, which told the stories of women who were allegedly victimized by the infamous superstar. The series broke ratings records on Lifetime, where it aired in January of this year. Tarana Burke, who founded the #MeToo movement in 2006, wrote in the TIME 100 profile of hampton that the filmmaker “challenges a culture that assumes we are all bystanders watching a forest fire and instead places us squarely inside of the flames.” (Photo via Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Viacom)
Chef and author Samin Nosrat enchanted viewers everywhere when a TV miniseries version of her book, Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat, dropped on Netflix last October. Nosrat’s simple and joyful approach to cooking and eating food was a welcome break from fast-paced cooking competition shows whose featured chefs value complex and expensive dishes. Chef and food writer Alice Waters profiled Nosrat for TIME, writing that “Samin shows us what a beautiful experience it is to understand your ingredients — where they come from, who grew them, how alive they are, how people around the world transform them in delicious, diverse ways.” (Photo via Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for Netflix)
Naomi Osaka is currently ranked number-one among professional women tennis players by the Women’s Tennis Association, making her the first Asian tennis player to be ranked number one in singles tennis. Osaka’s star rose last year when she battled veteran pro Serena Williams for the US Open women’s singles title in 2018 and won the controversial final match. Tennis great and current ESPN commentator Chris Evert wrote Osaka’s profile for TIME, noting of the Japanese-American athlete of Haitian and Japanese descent: “No one represents our more globalized, multicultural future better than this honest, polite, self-deprecating tennis life force, a potential champion for years to come.” (Photo via Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
A climate activist for our time, 16-year-old Greta Thunberg was featured in the TIME 100 for her climate change activism. Thunberg, who is from Sweden, has become known around the globe for spending the last few years of her young life dedicated to addressing world leaders about the need for immediate, drastic action on climate change and organizing kids in thousands of cities to protest for necessary environmental policies. Emma González, a survivor of the 2018 school shooting in Parkland, Florida, and an anti-gun violence activist, profiled Thunberg for TIME: “Fighting in her home country, Sweden, for a future free from pollution, environmental degradation, and climate change, Greta is inspiring steadfast students and shaming apathetic adults.” (Photo via Sean Gallup/ Getty Images)
Dr. Leana Wen is the new head of Planned Parenthood, after working for several years as Baltimore’s health commissioner. In her TIME profile of Wen, Cynthia Nixon, actress and former candidate for governor of New York, wrote, “At a time when reproductive rights are under relentless attack, and our country questions whether health care is a human right, Leana Wen is the fierce visionary I want fighting on behalf of all of us.” (Photo via Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images)