Mothers are the backbone of humanity in so many ways — they birth us, raise us and push us to be the best versions of ourselves. But one thing that often doesn’t get highlighted on mother’s day are the incredible accomplishments women have achieved, all while taking on the responsibility of raising children. Here are five working mothers that are inspiring us to reach higher this mother’s day.
Bozoma Saint John
Bozoma Saint John has had an illustrious career, in addition to raising her now 8-year old daughter, Lael. Her resume speaks for itself — after graduating from Wesleyan University in 1999 with a degree in English, she went on to work for Arnold Worldwide and SpikeDDB. Her career completely transformed after she revolutionized PepsiCo’s marketing efforts by creating partnerships with music festivals. Her experience in the music industry then led her to land jobs at Beats Music and Apple. Last summer, Uber tapped Saint John to be their first ever Chief Brand Officer, where she’s been tasked with creating “a brand that people feel good about supporting.
A mother to two, Chloe Gottlieb’s career in the advertising industry has spanned nearly twenty years. Inspired by a speech Bob Greenberg gave at her graduation ceremony, Gottlieb went on to work for R/GA, where she built the largest experience design team at any global agency. Her work earned her a spot on AdAge’s 2016 ‘Women to Watch’ and Business Insider’s 2015 ‘Most Creative People in Advertising’. She now works as a Co-Chief Creative Officer for R/GA’s U.S. offices.
A mother of three, Samantha Bee has joked that the key to being a working mother is noise cancelling headphones. The other key? Having an incredible comedy career that started off with a tour of a Sailor Moon stage production (where Bee played the titular role). After spending over ten years at the Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Bee went on to create her own show on TBS, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee. In 2017, Time named Bee one of the 100 most influential people in the world.
Senator Tammy Duckworth, a retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel, exemplifies grit in so many ways. She is the first Asian American woman elected to Congress in Illinois, the first disabled woman to be elected to Congress, and the first female double amputee in the Senate. In 2018, Duckworth also became the first U.S. Senator to give birth while in office. After the birth of her second daughter Maile, Congress unanimously approved changes to rules that previously only allowed senators and select staff on the floor during votes, allowing her to bring her daughter onto the Senate floor ten days after giving birth.
Susan Wojcicki is a mother of five – and CEO of YouTube. Wojcicki’s career in tech started when she became Google’s first marketing manager in 1999. Wojcicki grew with the company, becoming senior vice president of Advertising & Commerce, where she helped to develop Google products like AdWords, AdSense, DoubleClick, and Google Analytics. In 2014, she became the CEO. She is a strong advocate for work life balance, and ahead of her taking her fifth maternity leave wrote an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal about the importance of paid maternity leave.
These are just five mothers who are changing the world — there are countless other examples of mothers who are inspiring the masses and conquering the workplace. This Mother’s Day, make sure to thank all of the incredible mothers in your life (and hey, breakfast in bed wouldn’t be a bad idea either).