The Quotable Nerdy Chick: Grace Hopper

grace hopperGrace Hopper (1909 – 1992) was born in New York City. In 1928 she graduated from Vassar College, with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and physics and later received a MA and a Ph.D. from Yale University. She is known for being one of the first programmers of the Harvard Mark I computer. A US Navy rear admiral, Hopper also developed the first compiler for a computer programming language. Nicknamed Amazing Grace, Hopper coined the phrase “debugging” for computer problems, and has had both a US Navy destroyer and a supercomputer named in her honor. You can read more about Grace Hopper HERE.

Grace Hopper Quotes

  • Humans are allergic to change. They love to say, ‘We’ve always done it this way.’ I try to fight that. That’s why I have a clock on my wall that runs counter-clockwise.
  • Leadership is a two-way street, loyalty up and loyalty down. Respect for one’s superiors; care for one’s crew.
  • It is often easier to ask for forgiveness than to ask for permission.
  • A ship in port is safe, but that’s not what ships are built for.

I like these quotes! And while I’ve heard that third one many times, I never knew who to attribute it to. It’s true… but I hope my children don’t find this out for a while…

 

 

 

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The Quotable Nerdy Chick: Belva Lockwood

In honor of the upcoming election, this week’s Quotable Nerdy Chick is one of my personal favorites: Belva Lockwood. It’s sad to me how many people have never heard of Belva. She was such a fascinating woman that I believe she should be a household name.

In the United States in 1884, only men were allowed to vote. But Belva decided that she would take a bold but legal step: she ran for president! After all, the law only prohibited women from voting, not from getting votes. And, believe it or not, Belva got votes! She ran an effective campaign and actually convinced hundreds of men to vote for a woman for president. But don’t think they were sympathy votes! Belva’s run for office was based on experience and merit: unlike many women of the time, she went to college, then to law school, and even argued cases before the Supreme Court.

Quotes from Belva Lockwood:

“If nations could only depend upon fair and impartial judgments in a world court of law, they would abandon the senseless, savage practice of war.”

“I know we can’t abolish prejudice through laws, but we can set up guidelines for our actions by legislation.”

“I am, and always have been a progressive woman, and while never directly attacking the conventionalities of society, have always done, or attempted to do those things which I have considered conducive to my health, convenience or emolument.”

File:Belva Ann Lockwood - Brady-Handy.jpg“The glory of each generation is to make its own precedents.”

“I have been now fourteen years before the bar, in an almost continuous practice, and my experience has been large, often serious, and many times amusing. I have never lacked plenty of good paying work; but, while I have supported my family well, I have not grown rich. In business I have been patient, painstaking, and indefatigable. There is no class of case that comes before the court that I have not ventured to try . . . either civil, equitable, or criminal; and my clients have been as largely men as women. There is a good opening at the bar for the class of women who have taste and tact for it.”

Learn more about Belva at the National Archives or check out my book, BALLOTS FOR BELVA.

The Quotable Nerdy Chick: Madeleine Albright

File:Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.jpg

 

Madeleine Albright is a Nerdy Chick extraordinaire! She has served our country as the United States Ambassador to the United Nations and as the 64th United States Secretary of State — and, oh, by the way, the first woman to ever hold that office. She has a PhD from Columbia University, she has received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, she has served on the Board of Directors of the New York Stock Exchange, she is a Professor of International Relations at Georgetown University’s Walsh School of Foreign Service, and just to top all that off, she is fluent in English, French, Russian, and Czech. Oh, and she speaks and reads Polish and Serbo-Croatian, too. I wonder if she has a cape and mask to go with all those superpowers?

Quotes from Madeleine Albright:

“Even before I went to the UN, I often would want to say something in a meeting – only woman at the table – and I’d think, ‘OK well, I don’t think I’ll say that. It may sound stupid.’ And then some man says it, and everybody thinks it’s completely brilliant, and you are so mad at yourself for not saying something.”

“It’s one thing to be religious, but it’s another thing to make religion your policy.”

“I love being a woman and I was not one of these women who rose through professional life by wearing men’s clothes or looking masculine. I loved wearing bright colors and being who I am.”

“I really think that there was a great advantage in many ways to being a woman. I think we are a lot better at personal relationships, and then have the capability obviously of telling it like it is when it’s necessary.”

“I’ve never been to New Zealand before. But one of my role models, Xena, the warrior princess, comes from there.”

(FYI: Xena is one of my role models, too!)

Read more about Madeleine HERE or HERE.

 

The Quotable Nerdy Chick: Bella Abzug

File:Bella Abzug 1971-11-30.jpgWhen Bella Abzug was 13, her father died. There was no one to say the Mourner’s Kaddish for him in synagogue because that was the responsibility of the sons of the deceased — and Bella’s father didn’t have any sons. So Bella defied her community and said the prayers herself. It was one of her first feminist actions.

The daughter of Russian-Jewish immigrants, Bella started giving speeches about causes that were important to her in her childhood — speaking out in subways because she had no other pulpit. Over the course of her life, however, Bella found greater stages to stand on and larger audiences to listen to her words. including the House of Representatives, where she served from 1971 to 1977. She supported civil rights and women’s rights, and changed the world for the better.

Quotes from Bella Abzug:

  • “We are coming down from our pedestal and up from the laundry room. We want an equal share in government and we mean to get it.”
  • “Women have been trained to speak softly and carry a lipstick. Those days are over.”
  • “The test for whether or not you can hold a job should not be the arrangement of your chromosomes.”
  • “Women have been and are prejudiced, narrow minded, reactionary, even violent. Some women. They, of course, have a right to vote and a right to run for office. I will defend that right, but I will not support them or vote for them.”
  • “They used to give us a day–it was called International Women’s Day. In 1975 they gave us a year, the Year of the Woman. Then from 1975 to 1985 they gave us a decade, the Decade of the Woman. I said at the time, who knows, if we behave they may let us into the whole thing. Well, we didn’t behave and here we are.”
  • “All of the men on my staff can type.”

Learn more about Bella HERE.

 

The Quotable Nerdy Chick: Barbara McClintock

Barbara McClintock (1902 – 1992) was an American Geneticist. She originated the study of genetics in corn cells. Although her peers were initially skeptical about her work, McClintock went to win the Lasker Prize for her work, which was followed by her receipt of the Nobel Prize in 1983. Her quotes reveal a woman with enthusiasm for her ideas and joy with her work. Perhaps this is the secret to her success! To find out more about Barbara McClintock, click HERE.

  • I was just so interested in what I was doing I could hardly wait to get up in the morning and get at it. One of my friends, a geneticist, said I was a child, because only children can’t wait to get up in the morning to get at what they want to do.
  • If you know you’re right, you don’t care. You know that sooner or later, it will come out in the wash.
  • The prize is such an extraordinary honor. It might seem unfair, however, to reward a person for having so much pleasure over the years, asking the maize plant to solve specific problems and then watching its responses.
  • Plants are extraordinary. For instance … if you pinch a leaf of a plant you set off electrical impulse. You can’t touch a plant without setting off an electrical impulse … There is no question that plants have all kinds of sensitivities. They do a lot of responding to an environment. They can do almost anything you can think of.
  • It never occurred to me that there was going to be any stumbling block. Not that I had the answer, but [I had] the joy of going at it. When you have that joy, you do the right experiments. You let the material tell you where to go, and it tells you at every step what the next has to be because you’re integrating with an overall brand new pattern in mind.
  • With the tools and the knowledge, I could turn a developing snail’s egg into an elephant. It is not so much a matter of chemicals because snails and elephants do not differ that much; it is a matter of timing the action of genes.

I love that first quote! It doesn’t happen every day, but there are some days when I’m so excited about a project that I just can’t wait to get to it!

 

 

The Quotable Nerdy Chick: Dr. Sally Ride

Dr. Sally Ride (1951-2012) needs no introduction this week. She was an American Astronaut and physicist. In 1983 she flew into orbit on the Challenger and became the first American woman in space. In 1989 she left NASA and later founded Sally Ride Science, hoping to inspire young women to follow careers in science, technology and math.  There is much more to be said about Dr. Sally Ride. To find out more about her, take a look at her BIOGRAPHY or visit www.sallyridescience.com.

 

Sally Ride Quotes

  •  All adventures, especially into new territory, are scary.
  • If girls are interested, they have the potential to go further. There are still lingering stereotypes that affect girls in middle school, and they lose interest in the subjects.
  • But even in elementary school and junior high, I was very interested in space and in the space program.
  • There are lots of opportunities out there for women to work in these fields, … Girls just need support, encouragement and mentoring to follow through with the sciences.
  • But when I wasn’t working, I was usually at a window looking down at Earth.
  • I felt very honored, and I knew that people would be watching very closely, and I felt it was very, very important that I do a good job.
  • My parents didn’t have a scientific bone in their body, and their daughter was pursuing a career in astrophysics. They didn’t even know what astrophysics meant, but they supported me.

I am thankful for women like Sally Ride who teach us that we can soar and for parents who give their daughters wings.

*The above photo of Sally Ride is a NASA photo and is therefore in the public domain.

 

The Quotable Nerdy Chick: Margaret Mead

Margaret Mead (1901 – 1979) was an American anthropologist. She famously studied the influences of culture on personality. Much of her work was done in Samoa with the people who lived there. Her observations became prominent in the 1960s and 1970s. She is credited with helping start the sexual revolution. I had a very hard time narrowing down her quotes to ten, and have to admit that I may have feature her again in the future to get all of the good stuff in! To find out more about her click HERE.

          Margaret Mead Quotes

  • Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else.
  • As long as any adult thinks that he, like the parents and teachers of old, can become introspective, invoking his own youth to understand the youth before him, he is lost.
  • I do not believe in using women in combat, because females are too fierce.
  • I learned the value of hard work by working hard.
  • I must admit that I personally measure success in terms of the contributions an individual makes to her or his fellow human beings.
  • I was wise enough to never grow up while fooling most people into believing I had.
  • We won’t have a society if we destroy the environment.
  • Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.
  • Nobody has ever before asked the nuclear family to live all by itself in a box the way we do. With no relatives, no support, we’ve put it in an impossible situation.
  • What people say, what people do, and what they say they do are entirely different things.

How many of those quotes would be great printed on a t-shirt? 🙂

Check out our last post! Interview with Jaime Reed and a giveaway of two books. Giveaway goes through July 17!