Get to Know the Women Who Make History

Women and Girls Lead ushers in Women’s History Month with the presentation of MAKERS: Women Who Make America, premiering February 26, 2013 at 8pm ET.


“I’m going to finish this race on my hands and my knees if I have to. If I don’t finish this race, then everybody is going to believe women can’t do it. I’ve got to finish this race.” – Kathrine Switzer, the first woman to register and run the Boston Marathon, in MAKERS

In the opening scene of MAKERS, Kathrine Switzer is nearly tackled to the ground by Boston Marathon director Jock Semple. At that time, women were not allowed to compete in the race and the mere sight of her incited such rage in Semple that he’d rather tackle her than see her complete her 26.2 miles. It seems hard to believe in 2013, a year that saw the highest number of women sworn in to the U.S. Congress and the ban on military women in combat lifted by the Pentagon. As Women and Girls Lead prepares to celebrate many of  these triumphs during Women’s History Month this March, MAKERS helps audiences see how far we’ve come–and how far we still have to go.

The last 50 years of the women’s movement in America are chronicled in the three-part documentary series, which features legends from the worlds of politics, entertainment, and sports. Interviews with Gloria Steinem, Oprah Winfrey, Billie Jean King, and many more offer personal perspectives on the struggles and triumphs influential women faced while fighting for themselves and others.

In addition to these famous figures, MAKERS spotlights several lesser-known but equally remarkable trialblazers and their stories, including Brenda Berkman, the first female firefighter to serve the NYFD; and Dusty Roads, an airline stewardess who won a major battle against age discrimination in her field during the 1960s. Dynamic woman bonus: Meryl Streep narrates the series!

The documentary is part of a multi-platform initiative by filmmakers Dyllan McGee, Betsy West, and Peter Kunhard. MAKERS.com features hundreds of short video interviews with inspiring women, including Women and Girls Lead partners such as Esta Soler from Futures Without Violence, Zainab Salbi from Women for Women International, Robin Morgan from the Women’s Media Center, and Women and Girls Lead advisors Dolores Huerta, Sheryl WuDunn, and Marian Wright Edelman.

After the broadcast, join the filmmakers and panelist Esta Soler for an online social screening of MAKERS on Friday, March 1st, 2pm ET at http://bit.ly/MakersScreening. The online screening and live chat will kick off the #SheDocs Online Film Festival, which includes 10 free films to watch, host, and share throughout the month of March. Learn more at womenandgirlslead.org.