A Closer Look at Women’s History Month cover image

A Closer Look at Women’s History Month

Downtown LBK • March 7, 2023

March is a month of celebration, and we're not just talking about St. Patrick's Day here. It's also Women's History Month—a month dedicated to honoring the accomplishments and contributions of women throughout history. You may be wondering how this holiday came to be, why it exists, and what makes it special. Let's take a closer look!

The History 

Women's History Month has its roots in "International Women's Day," which was first celebrated on March 8th in 1911. This day was intended to honor the many accomplishments and contributions of women around the world. In the United States, International Women's Day wasn't officially recognized until 1975 during International Women's Year (IWY). During IWY, a number of conferences were held in order to discuss issues like equal rights and responsibilities for men and women. The National Women's Conference that year ended with a resolution that every president should proclaim March as "Women's History Month." That same year, President Jimmy Carter issued the first presidential proclamation declaring the week beginning March 8th as "National Women's History Week."

What Caused Women's History Month?

The idea for an entire month dedicated to celebrating women originated in Santa Rosa, California in 1978 when local school teacher Sonoma Mosaic organized a "Women's History Week." This was so successful that it quickly spread throughout other schools in California and eventually across the country. By 1987, 14 states had officially declared "Women's History Week" an annual event. Finally, in 1988 Congress passed Public Law 100-9, which declared March as National Women's History Month nationwide.

Why Do We Celebrate Women's History Month?

It is important to recognize the accomplishments of all people regardless of gender or race; however, there are still countless women who have been invisible throughout history due to societal attitudes towards them at different points in time. 

By recognizing their achievements during this month-long event, we can give credit where credit is due and make sure their stories are not forgotten! Additionally, by celebrating these women, we can inspire future generations to break down barriers and work towards equality for all people regardless of gender or race!

City of Lubbock Councilwoman Christy Martinez-Garcia has dedicated herself to a life of leadership for the Lubbock community. To her, Women's History Month is not only about equality for women but women of every color.

"Something for me as not only a woman in Lubbock, but a Latina woman in Lubbock, is it's important for us to engage all the community. One thing about Hispanic women, we've always been very strong. And we've always been a part of history. Unfortunately, it gets overlooked at times, but we have made a really big impact. Our community is underrepresented in the number of women that are serving, and it shouldn't be like that because we've got a growing, a thriving female population that is doing extremely well. We need their input. And we need young people; we need young women to also be involved. Because this is about the future of this city," says Councilwoman Martinez-Garcia.

While it may only last a few weeks each year, Women's History Month is a special time that reminds us all why recognizing the accomplishments of great women throughout history is so important–it keeps us inspired and helps us strive for greater progress toward gender equity every single day. 

Annie Rice is a prime example of a woman paving the way for other women in her career field. As a female lead photographer and photo editor with the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, she talks about creating room at the table for women who want to be included in a male-dominated field. 

"I do this job because five-year-old Annie Rice would think it's the coolest thing in the world, and I wish I could have seen a professional female sports photographer then. It would have helped prove to me that it is possible and achievable. After a Texas Tech basketball game, my boss Adam Young told me that his two daughters saw me photographing the team's win on TV and thought it was the coolest thing in the world. I do this for them."

So join us as we raise our voices together and honor extraordinary female leaders from past centuries up until today! Happy Women's History Month!