Women in History

Each year in celebration of  Women’s History month, we present our living history programs to 4th through 8th grade students in four East County school districts. Students, teachers, and we ourselves become keenly aware of the march of change in women’s lives throughout the centuries when we hear these women talk about their lives.

Sandy Martinez as Rosalind Franklin

Sandy Martinez as Rosalind Franklin


We begin to understand connections between women’s struggles for civil and political rights in parallel historical context with world struggles for peace, for abolition of slavery and the extension of civil rights to all people, and for environmental sanity.



Picture of Debbie Boyd as Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Debbie Boyd as Ruth Bader Ginsburg


We meet women who are pioneers in every field that once excluded women, e.g., science and technology, law and politics, the military (except as nurses and ambulance drivers), higher education, the skilled trades, all professions, arts and sports.




Joie Nolasco as Sybil Ludington

Joie Nolasco as Sybil Ludington


Some of the women we bring to life in these presentations are Sacagawea, Abigail Adams, Rachel Carson, Kate Sessions, Beatrix Potter, Clara Barton, Sonia Sotomayor, Alice Paul, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Rosalind Franklin, Sally Ride, Sybil Ludington, Eleanor Roosevelt, Susan B. Anthony, and Amelia Earhart. We have brought our program to adults in East County too via OASIS classes that have been very well received.



Joan Anderson as Kate Sessions

Joan Anderson as Kate Sessions


This year marks our 33rd year for  Women in History in the schools. We  hope you will be inspired to join us as  your favorite woman in history.




Times have changed since 1881, but our mission has not: To advance gender equity for women and girls through research, education and advocacy.

The theme for Women’s History Month 2024 selected by the National Women’s History Project (NWHP, newly renamed to National Women’s History Alliance) is Women Who Advocate for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion to honor women, past and present, who have been active in all forms of media and storytelling including print, radio, TV, stage, screen, blogs, podcasts, news, and social media.
To learn more, go to https://nationalwomenshistoryalliance.org.

Since 1991, the La Mesa-El Cajon Branch has assisted local schools in celebrating National Women’s History Month by donating materials to be displayed and utilized during March to raise student’s awareness of women’s contributions to history and their communities.

Celebrate Women Throughout the Year!

• February 7, 2024 – National Girls and Women in Sports Day https://www.womenssportsfoundation.org/get-involved/ngwsd/

• February 20, 2024 World Day of Social Justice is a day recognizing the need to promote efforts to tackle issues such as poverty, exclusion and unemployment. Many organizations, including the UN and the International Labour Office, make statements on the importance of social justice for people.

• March 8, 2024 – International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the economic, political and social achievements of women past, present and future. In some places like China, Russia, Vietnam and Bulgaria, International Women’s Day is a national holiday.

• March 11-22, 2023 – United Nations Women Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) The sixty-eighth session of the Commission on the Status of Women will be held at United Nations Headquarters in New York. It will focus on accelerating the achievement of gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls by addressing poverty and strengthening institutions and financing with a gender perspective.
See more at: https://www.unwomen.org/en/csw/csw68-2024

• March 12, 2024 – Equal Pay Day was originated by the National Committee on Pay Equity (NCPE) in 1996 as a public awareness event to illustrate the gap between men’s and women’s wages.

May 12, 2024 – Mother’s Day

• June 22 – Title IX enacted on this date in 1972 (“No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance…”) and signed by President Nixon on July 1, 1972. The Department of Education released in July 2022 that they would strengthen protections for students who experience sexualharassment and assault at school, and they would help protect LGBTQI+ students from discrimination.

July 19 and 20, 1848 – First Women’s Rights Conference https://www.history.com/topics/womens-rights/seneca-falls-convention

Women in History Timeline of Historic Events https://www.history.com/topics/womens-history/womens-history-us-timeline