The 2008 Minerva Award recipient list includes names known to millions, as well as women known within their communities for exemplifying courage and compassion. Meet the five honorees!
Californian Louise Hay is receiving this award for being a leader in the spiritual community. "[She] was the first person to really get out and talk about self-improvement and mind over matter and how important positive thinking is," Maria says. Watch Louise's inspiring story.
Betty Chinn started a one-woman operation and made a huge difference in her community. When she saw that people were hungry, she started feeding thousands. "I wanted to honor someone who also did it one person at a time and just did it her own way," Maria says. See how Betty is making a difference.
The third recipient is Ivelise Markovits, a Los Angeles resident who works with juvenile delinquents. Maria says Ivelise imagined a better world for America's youths and created an organization devoted to that cause. Find out more about Ivelise.
One honoree you may recognize is tennis legend Billie Jean King. "Every girl who is able to compete in a sport today in a public school owes a debt of gratitude to her and for so many other reasons," Maria says.
The list isn't complete without the final Minerva Award winner, Gloria Steinem. This woman is considered by many to be the mother of all feminism. Oprah says she wouldn't be sitting on stage today if Gloria hadn't fought for equal rights and equal pay for women.
Senator Edward Kennedy passed away late Tuesday after a battle with brain cancer. As the patriarch of America's most political family, this Lion of the Senate will leave a lasting legacy of public service.