Since March is Women’s History Month, Good News Wants to Know… what woman in history do you admire or do you aspire to emulate, and why?
I admire Harriet Tubman. I want to be fearless in helping those who are unseen, unheard and marginalized in our communities. Trusting God to show us the way.
Lisa Tchividjian, Speaker, author, and Director of Operations for Ema South Florida
Corrie ten Boom comes to mind as the extraordinary woman I admire and most definitely endeavor to emulate. Her example of practicing the “sacrifice of praise” has come to mind countless times throughout my life, specifically, how Corrie thanked God for a flea infestation in the concentration camp barracks, which caused the guards to stay away and enabled her to minister freely to the imprisoned women.
Dr. Andrea Hazim, President and Founder, Elev8Life Educational Foundation
I admire Harriet Tubman (Araminta Ross) because of her strength, courage to fight for life, and her dependency and trust in God. She continually risked her life to help save the lives of others.
Ariana Reid, Executive Director, Hope Women’s Centers
She was an immigrant from Greece who became a US Citizen. She married another Greek immigrant who was educated at the Sorbonne and opened a dry cleaning shop in Ohio where they began to raise their three children. On one, cold winter night when he was delivering to customers he slumped over the wheel, dead from an aneurysm. They lost their business and home and her repeated words to her young children were: “The Lord will provide.” Uprooted, she made ends meet managing an uncle’s small restaurant where they could live upstairs. Several years later she married a Greek bachelor from another town who moved her and the children to their new home—Pop Chris. Through sickness and aging she always reminded everyone around her of God’s faithfulness: “The Lord will provide.” She was Yiayia to us and I aspire to emulate her faith.
William “Bill” C. Davell, Director, Tripp Scott Attorneys at Law
The First Lady of the United States, Melania Trump is someone I greatly admire for her BE BEST campaign focused on children and those in need of compassion, kindness and respect. She is calling us to act and to make a difference one citizen at a time. She serves as a role model with her elegance and grace.
William Fleming, Ph.D., President, Palm Beach Atlantic University
Quote by Harriet Tubman (1865): “I prayed to God to make me strong and able to fight, and that’s what I’ve always prayed for ever since.”
Harriet Tubman was called by God to rescue those He put in front of here and she did! She continually put herself in danger by going back to rescue others. She knew that we are rescued to rescue.
Bob Barnes, President, Sheridan House Family Ministries
Mother Theresa’s life continues to make a huge impact on my own. Her ability to serve, love + sacrifice radically through seasons of doubt has gotten me through some hard times.
Bob Denison, President, Denison Yachting
I love this question and could name so many that have faced the greatest of obstacles and still persevered, from Harriet Tubman who fought to end slavery to Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, Dr. Condoleezza Rice and Ambassador Nikki Haley who have spent a lifetime proving so many critics wrong and accomplishing so much for our country. However, I have to say that I most admire the women who have directly influenced me in my life and for whom I work hard every day to earn their support are my mother and wife. My mother, Diane LaMarca, was a young mother with two sons at only one and three years old when she became a widow and had her life changed in an instant. She was my role model growing up and remains a model today of doing the right thing, whether or not anyone is watching. My wife Eileen is the other woman in life that I strive to follow in how she never stops working to lift up others around her. We have been through every challenge together and she is always the person that works to help us reach our goals, as a family. She is someone that often puts the needs of others above hers, whether working for nonprofit organizations, or volunteering for local philanthropic causes. I learn from her each and every day and try to incorporate her work ethic and heart for the community into my public service.
Chip LaMarca, State Representative, Florida House District 93
Gladys Aylward. She was a modest woman who felt called to go as a missionary to China before WWII. The mission organizations she applied to rejected her. Undaunted, she went anyway spending almost her life savings for passage, with just a few Pounds Sterling sewed into the lining of her dress. She made it and ministered to orphans there. She had a huge impact for the gospel there. Her story was made into a movie: The Inn of the Sixth Happiness. Her courage and faith inspire me.
Collins Forman, Jr., P.A.
The legacy of love, grace, hope, faithfulness, and strength emanate in women I admire. The first women I thought of were my mother and grandmother who are a part of my history and definitely champion women of God.
However a woman of history that I also truly admire is Evangeline Cory Booth, daughter of the founder The Salvation Army. Evangeline was a strong leader who before the age of 40 became the leader of The Salvation Army in the US, later she became the first woman General of this organization. She formulated Disaster Relief services, a fighter for social justice and provided residences for working women which are still in existence today.
The list could go on and on but her primary mission was to win souls for Christ and to help others. Why do I want to emulate Evangeline Booth?
My answer can be found in her own words: “There is no reward equal to that of doing the most good to the most people in the most need.”
Major Connie Long, Area Commander, The Salvation Army of Broward County
The woman I most admire is Elisabeth Elliot (1926-2015) who bravely followed her husband, Jim Elliot, as a missionary to the fierce, unreached Ecuadarian tribe, the Auca (Waorani). Jim and 4 friends were speared to death by the tribesmen, but Elizabeth took her 3 year old and lived with them saying: “The prayers of the widows themselves are for the Aucas. We look forward to the day when these savages will join us in Christian praise.”, which most have! She’s written over 20 books that have inspired many of us to be courageously obedient in much difficulty. I get to join a group of my friends as we’ve been bringing the gospel and help to unreached tribes in the headwaters of the Amazon in Peru, the Urarina. We also have witnessed the transformation of a culture!
Deborah Cusick, FAU Campus Volunteer, Intervarsity Christian Fellowship
There are many women I admire, but none more than my own mother. She loved Jesus more than anything, but people were a close second, especially her family. She suffered some extremely traumatic situations with grace, faith, and forgiveness unlike anyone I have ever known. She was strong, compassionate, funny, real, hard-working, and the person who first taught me about the Lord. She and my father adopted me at birth, and she always told me that while some babies grow in their forever mothers’ wombs, I grew my forever mother’s heart from the moment God told her about me.
Dolores King-St. George, President, King Communications and GraceNetRadio
I admire Ruth Bell Graham, born to medical missionary parents in China in 1920. She is known as the wife of evangelist Billy Graham.
Raising 5 children with her world famous husband often gone for weeks never deterred her from being his “most trusted partner,” encourager, adviser and loving wife. In her later years in spite of chronic pain and failing health she wrote books and was a source of inspiration with a smile and concern for others above self.
Don Campion, President, Banyan Air Service
Harriet Tubman – she knew how precious freedom was and still risked her freedom to help others live free.
Doug Sauder, Pastor, Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale
I aspire to emulate my wife, Theresa. She is the embodiment of unconditional love, grace and perseverance. After 46 years of marriage she continues to amaze me with her determination to love me and Jesus even more. Her verse is 1 Corinthians 15:58
Fidel Gomez, Pastor, Calvary Chapel Hollywood
There are many women who would fall into this category…however, I want to highlight Harriet Tubman and encourage those who have not seen the movie, Harriet, to view it. I have always admired her story of resilience, courage, and keen understanding of purpose.
Germaine Smith Baugh, Ed.D, President and CEO, Urban League of Broward County
I came to faith through Bible Study Fellowship 32 yrs. ago. It changed the trajectory of my life as well as our entire family for all eternity. Because of this, the woman I admire most in history is Miss Audrey Wetherell Johnson, the founder of Bible Study Fellowship.
Because of her desire to serve the One true God and share His Word, in 1936, she left her homeland of England to serve as a missionary in Shanghai.
For the next 6 yrs., she shared the Good News of Jesus Christ with her beloved Chinese people. Then WW II arrived and in 1945 she was imprisoned in a concentration camp for 3 yrs. Seven years later the Lord brought her to San Bernardino, CA.
She was invited to speak to a small fellowship of women. She shared from Eccl. 9:10, “ Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might.” Following her teaching, a group of 5 women asked her to “teach us to do God’s work with all our might.”
Miss Johnson’s Bible study of five women birthed a worldwide movement- Bible Study Fellowship. Today, the in-depth Bible study she began is used by over 400,000 people in over 120 countries around the world. Including China.
Gita Santangelo, Community Prayer Partner
I admire Mother Teresa, not only because she is considered to be one of the greatest humanitarians of this century, but for her humility and endless devotion in helping the poor.
Gregg Wallick, President, Best Roofing, Inc.
This maybe cliche. The woman I most admired and aspired to be like was my mother. She was the strongest, God fearing lady with the kindest heart I’ve ever known. She loved unconditionally & forgave even those that hurt her. She was a 21 year old freedom fighter in the 1956 Hungarian Revolution. With my dad she immigrated to the US & started a new life. An entrepreneur, she started and successfully ran two businesses for over 40 years!
With all that she went through in life, she still smiled, laughed and enjoyed all that God gave her! But the love of her family was her heart!!! “
Helen Wayner P.A., Century 21 Hansen Realty
I admire Lady Huntington. Her story takes place in the 18th century where she resourced a passionate preacher, George Whitefield, and together they had a massive impact on spreading Christianity in America and England.
JoAnne Larson Daudt, P.A.
There are many women in the Bible who I admire and would be grateful if I had any one of their characteristics. I admire Esther, a woman of courage, who was able to stand before the King on behalf of her people. I believe at this point in history, we have been appointed “for such a time as this” to stand up for what is right and good. Esther, even after becoming royalty, was connected to her people. She was wise to fast and pray before presenting herself to the King and was careful with her words. As a result of her courage, the entire nation was saved. I admire her willingness to do the “hard” things in life so that others will be saved.
Dr. Mary Drabik, President, South Florida Bible College & Theological Seminary
There have been so many admirable women; but to me, one that stands out is Mary, the mother of Jesus. Imagine the chaos that conception brought into her young life. She could have taken many different routes regarding that pregnancy: ending it, lying, running, but instead, she chose the path of faith and obedience, in a season when things were certainly not readily reasonable.
Dr. Michael Rozenblum, Genesis Physical Medicine
For me Eleanor Roosevelt is an inspiration. She was controversial First Lady, known for her outspokenness, particularly on civil rights. She pressed the US to join and support the United Nations and became its first delegate and first chair for the UN Commission on Human Rights. Her quotes are always an inspiration to me—my favorite is “Do one thing every day that scares you.” To drive change, this is so true.
Other wonderful quotes of her’s include:
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”
“A woman is like a tea bag; you never know how strong it is until it’s in hot water.”
“Do what you feel in your heart to be right – for you’ll be criticized anyway.”
Nancy Robin, Executive Director, Habitat for Humanity of Broward
The woman in history I most admire is the Ukraine’s first queen, Queen Olga (born circa 890, died 969), I admired her strength in overcoming the brutal death of her husband at the hands of a rival nation, taking control of the country in spite of being a woman, and then she not only converted to Christianity, she introduced a completely different code of ethics, faith, and culture into this pagan nation. She established hospitals and welfare for the poor as well as she used her royal position to teach people about the Christian faith. While Kievan Rus (as the Ukraine was known back then) still remained a pagan kingdom for some time after her death, it was her hard work and commitment to the Gospel and laid the foundation for her grandson to officially finish the job bringing the gospel to the Ukraine.
Oksana Horton, Artistic Director, Torch & Trumpet Theater Group, a subsidiary of Revelation Ministries
Shelly, the woman in history that I admire the most is Ms. Blanche Elizabeth Ely, who was my high school principal, in Pompano Beach Florida. She was known for expanding educational opportunities for African- American students. She taught black children that they were not inferior to other races of people and that they have brilliant minds.
O’Neal Dozier, Pastor, The Worldwide Christian Center
I do not have heroes per se, but the woman I admired the most was my mother. As a mom of 7 children, she managed all of our appointments, cooked, cleaned and even worked a full-time job while doing this. She instilled hardworking traits in all of us and often quoted Proverbs 16:27-29. She was generous, kind and loving and was a great example of a Proverbs 31 woman.
Patricia Colangelo, EdS, Director of Operations – Florida, Trinity International University
The woman I admire most is my Mom. She and my Dad raised 11 children, 7 boys and 4 girls, I was # 10…
Her amazing love of God and her family and unconditional love to each one of my Brothers & Sisters and myself, and constant encouragement, patience, guidance, wisdom…. She exemplified Proverbs 31.
My mom is with Jesus now…. I remember in her later years one of her friends asked her ‘Agnes how did you do it’? A sweet smile came across her face and she said “I just loved being a mom”
From ALL 11 of us kids “THANK YOU MOM”!!!!
Coach Rick Andreassen, Founder and President, SAINTS International
It’s hard to narrow it down to just one, so other than my wife and my daughter, here are three women throughout history that I admire for their conviction:
Aung San Suu Kyi – Politician from Burma who played vital role in the country’s transition from military junta to partial democracy. She was placed under house arrest for over 15 years as a result of her activism. Fun fact: Aung San was also the subject of the U2 song “Walk On.”
Rosa Parks – Known as “the first lady of civil rights.” Parks was best known for her pivotal role in the Montgomery bus boycott, when she refused to relinquish her seat in the “colored section” to a white passenger, after the whites-only section was filled. Junia (cf. Romans 16:7) – Served alongside St. Paul in the early church, was imprisoned with him, and delivered the book of Romans to the church in Rome.
Rick Hunter, The CityChurch Project
I admire my mother. She practiced what I preach.
Samuel Lamerson, PhD, Distinguished Professor of Biblical Studies, Knox Theological Seminary
I admire and am inspired by Mother Teresa (Saint Teresa of Calcutta) for dedicating her life to selflessly giving to the poorest of the poor. In 2015 I had the honor of visiting her Charity Home in Agra, India and spending time with sick bedridden orphan children.
Sandra Muvdi, MBA, President/CEO, Jessica June Children’s Cancer Foundation®
She stood up for her people even though as she went to the king she didn’t know if she was going to get her head chopped of or not she stepped out in total Faith and because of that she saved the Jewish people !!!
I love Holy Boldness
Stepping out in Faith and Standing for Truth and for our Lord. No matter the cost
Sue Trombino, Founder, Women Impacting the Nation
I admire Kay Arthur because she is a history-making woman, following her gifting and calling to teach the Bible all around the world while being a wonderful wife and mother, and gracious woman who built a very successful and reputable ministry that will continue for generations to come.
Susan Michael, U.S. Director, International Christian Embassy Jerusalem
I so admire Amy Beatrice Carmichael(1867-1951) who as an Irish Christian Missionary lived and founded an orphanage in Donhnavur , India; changing lives from 1901. Amy served for 55 years bravely rescuing and nurturing poor children from temple prostitution. Today sex trafficking is rampant globally with profits amounting to $150 billion a year. Amy’s legacy stands with the Dohnavur Fellowship today as an example of courage and goodness to combat such evil in our world.
Virlee “Vee” Stepelton, Ministry Advocate
Hands down, it would have to be First Lady Melania Trump, who has been a tremendous role model for our country and has been by President Trump’s side through all of these unfair attacks and bogus hoaxes on our President.
Willy Guardiola, Christian on a Mission