WOA Bridge

Honoring contributions of historic Iowa women

Women of achievement have inspired, pioneered and championed extraordinary accomplishments through their lives and their work.

Women of Achievement Award


The Women of Achievement Award recognizes the contributions of historical (deceased) Iowa women who made outstanding and lasting contributions to the citizens of Iowa or have advanced the well-being of others throughout the world.

This award will be a visible reminder to all crossing the Iowa Women of Achievement Bridge of their contributions to their work, communities, and the status of women.

2021 Honorees

Barbara Lee Boatwright.jpegBarbara Lee Boatwright (1924-2012)
As president of Iowa Clinical Social Work Coalition, Barbara Lee Boatwright helped pass state licensure for social workers. She co-founded the Democratic Activist Women's Network (DAWN) in 1993 to elect Iowa women to the legislature. She moved to Iowa in 1955 and her work with Iowa Children and Family Services, Central Iowa Mental Health Center, University of Iowa’s School of Social Work, and more earned her recognition for her lifetime efforts for social workers and social work issues.
Lou Henry Hoover.jpgLou Henry Hoover (1874-1944)
Lou Henry Hoover, born in Waterloo, IA, attended Stanford University as the first woman to receive a degree in geology. A gifted writer, she won acclaim for her translation of De Re Metallica, and as First Lady of the United States, wrote the first comprehensive history of the White House and it’s furnishings. Her work with Girl Scouts of America and the National Amatuer Athletic Federation highlighted her passion for advocating for women in leadership and athletics.
Jessie Field Shambaugh.jpegJessie Field Shambaugh (1881-1971)
Jessie Field Shambaugh, born in Shenandoah, Iowa, is called the "Mother of 4-H." She started after-school clubs in 1901 while teaching at Goldenrod School in Page County, Iowa. When she became County School Superintendent in 1906, she organized Boys Corn Clubs and Girls Home Clubs in all 130 country schools. Students developed their Head, Heart, and Hands in her 3-H Clubs. She hosted the U.S. Commissioner of Education and state superintendents as they toured Page County clubs in 1909.

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