American Female Educators

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Vote for Your Favourite American Female Educators

 1 Helen Keller

Helen Keller.
4
Famous As: Author
Birthdate: June 27, 1880
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Tuscumbia, Alabama, United States
Died: June 1, 1968

A prolific author, having written 12 published books and several articles, Helen Keller was the first deaf-blind person to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree. Her autobiography, The Story of My Life, made Keller famous and was adapted for film and stage. She was also an activist and campaigned for women's suffrage, labour rights, socialism and other such causes.

 2 Eleanor Roosevelt

Eleanor Roosevelt.
4
Famous As: Former First Lady of the United States
Birthdate: October 11, 1884
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States
Died: November 7, 1962

Feminist and civil rights icon Eleanor Roosevelt, wife of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, was the longest-serving U.S First Lady. She was a prominent human rights activist, wrote columns, and hosted a radio show. She was named to Gallup's List of Most Widely Admired People of the 20th Century in 1999.

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 3 Anita Hill

Anita Hill.
19
Famous As: Attorney
Birthdate: July 30, 1956
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Morns, Oklahoma, USA

 4 Christa McAuliffe

Christa McAuliffe.
4
Famous As: Astronaut, Teacher
Birthdate: September 2, 1948
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Died: January 28, 1986

Christa McAuliffe was an American astronaut and teacher who died while serving as a payload specialist on board Space Shuttle Challenger, which exploded during STS-51-L. McAuliffe was all set to become the first teacher in space as she was part of the NASA Teacher in Space Project. In 2004, she was posthumously honored with the Congressional Space Medal of Honor.

 5 Anne Sullivan

Anne Sullivan.
6
Famous As: American Teacher, Instructor
Birthdate: April 14, 1866
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Feeding Hills
Died: October 20, 1936

 6 Katie Porter

Katie Porter
6
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: January 3, 1974
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Fort Dodge, Iowa, U.S.

Currently a member of the House of Representative from the 45th Congressional District in Orange County, California, American politician Katie Porter practiced law before taking up teaching as her full time profession. Eventually she won the 2018 election to the House and is now a member of the House Natural Resources Committee and deputy chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

 7 Betty Shabazz

Betty Shabazz
6
Famous As: Educator
Birthdate: May 28, 1934
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Pinehurst, Georgia, United States
Died: June 23, 1997

Civil rights activist and educator Betty Shabazz, or Betty X, was the wife of Black nationalist leader Malcolm X. Raised by her adoptive parents in Detroit, she met Malcolm X at a Nation of Islam event in Harlem. She died when her apartment was set on fire set by her grandson.

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 8 Mary Kay Letourneau

Mary Kay Letourneau
4
Famous As: Criminal
Birthdate: January 30, 1962
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Tustin, California, United States
Died: July 6, 2020

American teacher Mary Kay Letourneau was pleaded guilty in 1997 to two counts of felony second-degree rape of a child. She began a sexual relationship with her sixth-grade student Vili Fualaau and had two children with him. Letourneau served two prison sentences as their relationship was forbidden by law. The two got married in 2005 and got separated in 2019.

 9 Sonya Curry

Sonya Curry.
4
Famous As: Dell Curry's Wife
Birthdate: May 30, 1966
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Radford, Virginia, United States

The wife of NBA star Dell Curry and the mother of basketball players Seth and Stephen Curry, Sonya Curry grew up amid poverty and often had racist encounters with the Ku Klux Klan. Once a star volleyball player at Virginia Tech, she now heads the Christian Montessori School founded by her.

 10 Jane Elliott

Jane Elliott
6
Famous As: Schoolteacher
Birthdate: May 27, 1933
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Riceville, Mitchell County, Iowa, USA

 11 Brene Brown

Brene Brown
6
Famous As: Researcher
Birthdate: November 18, 1965
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: San Antonio, Texas, U.S.

Apart from being a University of Houston research professor, Brene Brown has also been a successful author of New York Times bestsellers such as Braving the Wilderness, and a podcast host. She also has a lecture featured on Netflix, while her Ted Talk is one of the world’s top-five most-viewed. 

 12 Sylvia Earle

Sylvia Earle
6
Famous As: Marine biologist
Birthdate: August 30, 1935
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Gibbstown, New Jersey, U.S.
Sylvia Earle is known for her research on marine algae and she was the first female chief scientist of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Earle held the world record for the deepest untethered dive and was named by Time Magazine as its first Hero for the Planet, in 1998. She also featured in Netflix Original documentary Seaspiracy.

 13 Pamela Des Barres

Pamela Des Barres
4
Famous As: Musician
Birthdate: September 9, 1948
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Reseda, California, USA

 14 Jennifer Mulhern Granholm

Jennifer Mulhern Granholm
6
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: February 5, 1959
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Jennifer Mulhern Granholm is a politician, lawyer, educator, and author. She is currently serving as the 16th United States Secretary of Energy, in office since February 2021. Previously, she was the 47th governor of Michigan, the first woman to serve in this position. She was made a Commander of the Royal Order of the Polar Star in 2010. 

 15 Erin Murphy

Erin Murphy
6
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: June 17, 1964
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Encino, California, USA

 16 Amy Chua

Amy Chua
4
Famous As: Lawyer
Birthdate: October 26, 1962
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Champaign, Illinois Champaign, Illinois, U.S.

 17 Zitkala-Sa

Zitkala-Sa
4
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: February 22, 1876
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Yankton Reservation, South Dakota, United States
Died: January 26, 1938

 18 Louise Lasser

Louise Lasser
6
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: April 11, 1939
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: New York City, New York, USA

 19 Brigitte Gabriel

Brigitte Gabriel
6
Famous As: Author
Birthdate: October 21, 1964
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Marjeyoun, Lebanon

 20 Lauren Lane

Lauren Lane
4
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: February 2, 1961
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA

 21 Virginia Johnson

Virginia Johnson
4
Famous As: Sexologist
Birthdate: February 11, 1925
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Springfield, Missouri, United States
Died: July 24, 2013

 22 Laura Spelman Rockefeller

Laura Spelman Rockefeller.
4
Famous As: Philanthropist
Birthdate: September 9, 1839
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Wadsworth, Ohio, United States
Died: March 12, 1915

 23 Annie Sprinkle

Annie Sprinkle
4
Famous As: Sexologist
Birthdate: July 23, 1954
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

Annie Sprinkle is an American sexologist who supports sex work and healthcare. Sprinkle, who identifies herself as ecosexual, works as a feminist stripper, sex educator, pornographic actress, and sex-positive feminist. She is credited with popularizing lesbian pornography and the post-porn movement.

 24 Carol S. Dweck

Carol S. Dweck.
4
Famous As: Physiologists
Birthdate: October 17, 1946
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States

Renowned psychologist Carol S. Dweck has taught at both Columbia and Harvard and is now a professor at Stanford. She is best known for her research on fixed mindset and growth mindset and has also penned popular books such as Self-theories: Their Role in Motivation, Personality and Development.

 25 Essie Mae Washington-Williams

Essie Mae Washington-Williams
4
Famous As: Teacher
Birthdate: October 12, 1925
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Aiken, South Carolina, USA
Died: February 4, 2013

In 2003, Essie Mae Washington-Williams made headlines when she announced that she was the illegitimate, bi-racial child of senator Strom Thurmond and his Black maid. It is believed Essie’s mother was 16 when she had her, and that Thurmond didn’t accept her, as he was politically pro-segregation.

 26 Ruby Wax

Ruby Wax
4
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: April 19, 1953
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Evanston, Illinois, United States

 27 Mamie Till

Mamie Till
4
Famous As: Activist
Birthdate: November 23, 1921
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: near Webb, Mississippi, USA
Died: January 6, 2003

 28 Debra Lafave

Debra Lafave
4
Famous As: Teacher
Birthdate: August 28, 1980
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Riverview, Florida, United States

 29 Marilyn vos Savant

Marilyn vos Savant
11
Famous As: Columnist
Birthdate: August 11, 1946
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: St. Louis, Missouri, United States

 30 Heather Cox Richardson

Heather Cox Richardson
4
Famous As: Historian
Birthdate: 1962 AD
Birthplace: Maine, U.S.

Heather Cox Richardson is an American professor and historian who is currently teaching history at Boston College. She has also taught history at prestigious institutions like the University of Massachusetts Amherst and MIT. Richardson has written many books on politics and history and is credited with founding werehistory.org, which houses short articles.

 31 Regina S Peruggi

Regina S Peruggi.
4
Famous As: Educator
Birthdate: 1947 AD

Regina S Peruggi is an educator, who became the first woman to become president of Kingsborough Community College. Prior to this, she served as president of Marymount Manhattan College. She has been on the board of directors of many educational institutions. She was honored as a New York State Senate Woman of Distinction in 2006.

 32 Amber Nash

Amber Nash
6
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: June 6, 1977
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Atlanta, Georgia, United States

 33 Marva Collins

Marva Collins
3
Famous As: American educator
Birthdate: August 31, 1936
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Monroeville, Alabama, United States
Died: June 24, 2015

 34 T'Keyah Crystal Keymah

T'Keyah Crystal Keymah
4
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: October 13, 1962
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, U.S.

 35 Kami Cotler

Kami Cotler
6
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: June 17, 1965
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Long Beach, California, United States

 36 Pema Chodron

Pema Chodron
6
Famous As: Philosopher
Birthdate: July 14, 1936
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: New York City, New York (state) New York, United States

Pema Chodron is an American Tibetan Buddhist and an ordained nun. Born as Deirdre Blomfield-Brown in New York, she began studying with Tibetan Buddhist Lama Chime Rinpoche as a young woman. She eventually became a fully ordained nun or bhikṣuṇī. She is the author of several dozen books and audiobooks. She is the principal teacher at Gampo Abbey. 

 37 Liz Murray

Liz Murray
6
Famous As: Inspirational speaker
Birthdate: September 23, 1980
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: The Bronx, New York City, New York, USA

 38 Deborah Sampson

Deborah Sampson
4
Famous As: Military woman
Birthdate: December 17, 1760
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Plympton, Massachusetts, USA
Died: April 29, 1827

 39 Amy Cuddy

Amy Cuddy
4
Famous As: Psychologist
Birthdate: June 23, 1972
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Robesonia, Pennsylvania, USA

 40 Emma Willard

Emma Willard
3
Famous As: American activist
Birthdate: February 23, 1787
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Berlin, Connecticut, United States
Died: April 15, 1870

 41 Judy Chu

Judy Chu
4
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: July 7, 1953
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, U.S.

 42 Rachel Dolezal

Rachel Dolezal
15
Famous As: Author
Birthdate: November 12, 1977
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Lincoln County, Montana, U.S

While she claimed she was a transracial Black woman, former NAACP branch president Rachel Dolezal was revealed to be a white woman passing off as Black when her parents spoke to the media. Following the mass protests after the revelation, she was fired from Eastern Washington University, her workplace.

 43 Jesmyn Ward

Jesmyn Ward
4
Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: April 2, 1977
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: DeLisle, Mississippi, US

 44 Joyce Maynard

Joyce Maynard
6
Famous As: Novelists
Birthdate: November 5, 1953
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Exeter, New Hampshire, USA

 45 Mary Ann Shadd

Mary Ann Shadd
17
Famous As: Activist
Birthdate: October 9, 1823
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Wilmington, Delaware, United States
Died: June 5, 1893

The first North American Black woman to publish a newspaper, USA-born Mary Ann Shadd was the founder of the Canadian newspaper, The Provincial Freeman. Concurrently serving as its anonymous editor and contributor, she also became one of the first women to pursue journalism in Canada. She was also one of the first Black women to earn a degree in law.

 46 Karen Pence

Karen Pence
40
Famous As: Educator
Birthdate: January 1, 1957
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Kansas, USA
Former second lady of the United States, Karen Pence is the wife of Mike Pence who served as American President from 2017 to 2021. Karen also served as the first lady of Indiana from 2013 to 2017 during her husband's term as governor of the state. In 2019, she returned as a part-time art teacher for Immanuel Christian School.

 47 Lillian Moller Gilbreth

Lillian Moller Gilbreth.
4
Famous As: Mother of Modern Management
Birthdate: May 24, 1878
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Oakland
Died: January 2, 1972

 48 Dorothy Height

Dorothy Height
4
Famous As: Educator
Birthdate: March 24, 1912
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Richmond, Virginia, United States
Died: April 20, 2010

 49 Donna Leon

Donna Leon
6
Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: September 28, 1942
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Montclair, New Jersey, U.S.

 50 Diana Canova

Diana Canova
6
Famous As: Actress
Birthdate: June 1, 1953
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: West Palm Beach, Florida, United States