The United States has always been a land of immigration. Among the thousands of immigrants aspiring to find new opportunities and make a change, women played a crucial role in shaping American society. Madeleine Albright is a prime example of a role model for strong women. She embodies women who have escaped oppression and made a difference within American borders. She is known for being the first female Secretary of State, and the highest-ranking woman ever in to work in the U.S. Government.
What may be the most surprising fact about her is the fact that she immigrated to the U.S., fleeing from the Nazis of Germany. Indeed, Albright was born in Prague from Jewish parents. She and her family fled their native Czechoslovakia shortly after the country was invaded by the Nazis at the start of World War II. She moved in the United Sates and became a naturalized citizen. She quickly distinguished herself as a force to be reckoned with. For this reason, she was chosen to be the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations. Her expertise, leadership and devotion to people in need made her one of the most influential advocates of America.
Like her, many brave women left their country of origin, eager to discover a land full of promises. This is the case of Salma Hayek. This well-known and talented actress was born in Mexico. She struggled many years as an “illegal immigrant” before becoming officially naturalized as a U.S. citizen. As a Mexican woman, she suffered from racial discrimination in Hollywood. However, her immigrant background turned out to be a powerful benefit for her career. She became the most powerful Latino Star in Hollywood. She is also an active campaigner for women’s rights and undocumented workers.
These inspiring women made their mark on American history by using their personal immigration experiences as a driving force to stand up and fight for their beliefs and rights.