The Official Site of The Commonwealth of Virginia

Women's History Month in Virginia

March is Women's History Month. Take a look into women's impact on Virginia's past, present, and future.

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Noteworthy Women of Virginia

Throughout the month of March, the spotlight is on influential women of Virginia's past, present, and future.

Other Noteworthy Women

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Ana Ines Barragan King

The Ambassador of Dance and Culture

The joy and beauty of South American dance and culture has become a part of Richmond and Virginia's culture thanks to the work of Ana Ines Barragan King.

One of the Library of Virginia's Women in History honorees, King is a native of Columbia, South America who learned dance from her mother at a young age. She moved to Richmond and VCU after marriage, and in 1997 established the Latin Ballet of Virginia. 

She refers to herself and her company as "ambassadors of dance and culture," and has developed educational programs to teach students Spanish and English through dance and use dance as therapy for children with special needs. 

Learn More about Ana Ines Barragan King

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Karenne Wood

The Scholar and Advocate

A member of the Monacan tribe, Karenne Wood spent most of her life working to understand and to share what being one of Virginia's native peoples meant. She began an effort to document and revive the Monacan language, and sat on the Monacan tribal council and served as tribal historian. 

Wood edited The Virginia Indian Heritage Trail (2007)'s tribal histories and interpretive site descriptions, and curated the exhibition Beyond Jamestown: Virginia Indians Past and Present, at the Virginia Museum of Natural History. Her work included coordinating the return of sacred artifacts to native communities through the Association on American Indian Affairs.

Learn More about Karenne Wood

Photo of Ora Stokes

Ora E. Brown Stokes

The Civic leader and Social Reformer

Ora Stokes was the daughter of a preacher in Chesterfield County who married another preacher and spent her life working to further the education of women and Black Americans. 

A trained teacher by profession and a well-known community activist and suffragist, Stokes attended a segregated public school in Fredericksburg. She graduated from high school at age 13 and obtained her teaching degree from Virginia Normal and Collegiate institute (now Virginia State University).

Shortly after the ratification of the 19th Amendment in August 1920 allowing women to vote, Ora and her friend Maggie L. Walker led a voter registration drive for African American women in Richmond.

Learn More about Ora Stokes

Looking for more featured women?

To view the entire featured list of noteworthy women of Virginia's history click the button below.

View Full List

 

March 14-20, 2021

Women Veterans Week

Honoring Women Veterans

This week is a time dedicated to honoring the service and sacrifice of women veterans across the Commonwealth. Taking place from March 14–20, 2021, this is the fourth consecutive year that Virginia is devoting the third full week in March to recognizing all of the women who have served in the United States armed forces.

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Highest Percentage of Women Veterans

With over 108,000 women veterans who call the Commonwealth home, Virginia has the highest percentage of women veterans per population of any state in the nation.

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Fastest-growing Segment

Women veterans are the fastest-growing segment of Virginia’s total veteran population.

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One of the First Dedicated Programs

In 2018, Virginia is one of the first states to establish a dedicated program for women veterans, which includes an annual Virginia Women Veterans Summit. This year’s event will take place virtually from June 23–24, 2021

Learning Resources

Check out the resources below to learn more on women's impact on the history of Virginia.

Attractions

Below is a brief featured list of women's History attractions that provide great resources for learning more about women's history in Virgnia.

Featured Attractions

Library of Virginia - Virginia Women in History Digital Trails

Whether you’re traveling in southwestern Virginia, Hampton Roads, or along Route 58, learn about Virginia women who made a difference along the way.

Visit sites (virtually or in person) associated with history-making women across the state through the Library of Virginia's Women in History Digital Trails.