#50WOOIcons2016 – List of 50 women doing extraordinary work

  • These women are extraordinary, not because of their origin, background or influence, but because of their purpose and passion. Through their meaningful work they are changing lives of hundreds and thousands. They are gutsy, they are compassionate, they speak their minds, they motivate, they are driven and unstoppable. They are changing the world around them. Meet each of these #50WOOIcons and get inspired. (Arranged in alphabetical order.)
  • Sports Golfer - Benguluru Aditi Ashok entered the record books by becoming the first woman Indian golfer to win a European Tour event.
  • Category : Social work Social Entreprise Founder - Ummeed Avani Singh founded Ummeed in 2012, a non-profit organisation to empower economically backward women in Delhi's Jamia area by providing them with electric rickshaws to drive. Ummeed's aim is to help women become strong, confident, and economically independent. Recently Ummed has launched its Big Sib Mentorship program to help girls socre great in school.
  • An aspiring industrial designer with passion for painting and sculpture 22-year-old Anjali raises funds for causes such as natural calamities, child abuse, and rehabilitation of underprivileged children through her artistic creations. She also won the third prize at the United Nations Poster for Peace Contest for her disarmament posters, Break Free and Cutting a Peace Deal.
  • Social Enterprise, Founder - Neo Fusion Foundation for street children Anubhooti picks up street children, educates them and makes them self-sufficient to be able to fend for themselves.
  • Human Resources - Diversity Anupama Kapoor, Founder - Reboot Network An advocate of gender equality and women coach, Anupama Kapoor's initiative is to reboot the lost careers of women. Tweet @Anupamaskapoor
  • Events Image Consultant, speaker, trained classical dancer, Founder - Let's Give Back Babeetta Sakxena founded Let's Give Back to curate unique events with a mission to give back to society.
  • Sports Open water swimmer In 2015, Bhakti Bhakti Sharma became the first Asian woman and the youngest swimmer in the world to set a record in open swimming in the Antarctic waters. She swam a distance of 1.4 miles in 41.14 minutes at temperatures as low as 1 degree Celsius to achieve this record-breaking feat! Sharma has won victory over all the five oceans of the world, besides other seas and water bodies.
  • Fatured in BBC's #100women , Birubala Rabha, a woman who has campaigned against the witch hunting of women in the Indian state of Assam for the past 15 years and has rescued 35 women from the evil. More than 2,000 witchcraft murders have taken place in India since 2000. Women are often branded witches to help relatives and neighbours grab their land and property, to settle personal grudges, or for denying sexual favours.
  • Editorial Head of Balaknama a quarterly tablopid by street children. Having lost her father in 2008, Chandni started working as a rag picker. Balaknama, a newspaper run and edited by street children that speaks about their iives, issues and news, is not only transforming children's lives but also uniting street children internationally. And, Chandni, as the editor of the newspaper along with her team of reporters is doing a commendable job.
  • Category: Media-FIlms, Actor. Besides her recent Best Actress award got Piku, Deepika gave us all a gift. She came in open to talk about her depression which is very guty for a celebrity to do so. Deepika has contributed to relieve the social stigma towards the mental illness to some extent. She gave a message to people to accept theirs and others struggle with their psychological diorders. It take a guts for a woman celebrity to admit her problems in public and she is our hero.
  • Sports - Gymastics I Dipa Karmarkar, Tripura, took India's flag high at Olympics when she reached the vault finals at Rio. The first Indian woman to do so. She is also the first Indian to qualify for the Olympics gymnastics event
  • Business & Economics I Founder - All Ladies League - Business Networking for women I Dr. Harbeen Arora united the women around the Globe in one WEF - Women Economic Forum, the biggest women organisation with maximum no of women members in one single organisation.
  • Social Entreprise Founder - Helping Hands Reaching out to the poorest of poor, abandoned and abused children, rehabilitating and educating them, and giving them a new life, Esther has been doing all this without making any noise.
  • "Computer engineering student Age: 20 Gauri is one of the first children in India to experience a unique learning experience now known as 'School in the Cloud.'
  • Technology Entrepreneurship I Founder & CEO @BitGiving Ishita by her crowd funding platform helped individuals and organisations raise funds to realise their dreams and opened new avenues of hope for more people who want to give back to society. Tweet @anand_ishita
  • Ishita Katyal Author - Simran's Diary, Partirdge India This super sun is the youngest entrée in this list of 50 women making a difference. This 12 year old is an influencer, TED speaker from Vibgyor High School in Pune and also the youngest organiser of TEDx Youth events in the Asia-Pacific region.
  • Tech Entrepreneur & Founder @Mechenex Ishita has created an aggregator of car service providers in the country to provide at the door car care service. The USP of Mechenix is "At Your Door Step Car Care Taker". @IshitaMatharu"
  • Amritsar Chairperson S.H.E. Society Her project named “Mission AABAAD” aims at rehabilitating the people living there in dire poverty. S.H.E has ecently adopted a slum area situated on Jalandhar in Punjab. This slum area has about 100 to 120 Jhuggis where 1200 — 1300 persons are residing including men, women & children under miserable and pathetic conditions.
  • Food & Catering Chef the owner of Theobroma chain of Patisseries Having trained in France and served in five-star hotels pastry Kainaz didn’t let her back injury due to an accident ruin her career and launched Theobroma. Ever since, Theobroma has lived to its name - Food of the Gods. When asked why her desserts are special and unique, her answer is, " because we serve what we like to eat".
  • Category: Tech Entrepreneur I Co-Founder of Inclove Kalyani launched World's First Matchmaking App to help people with disability and health issues to find love. Raised first round of funds for the project on, Inclove got funds worth 1 Cr in 2016. App is currently available on android.
  • Food & Catering I Master Chef 2016 I Kirti Bhoumika, the 20 year old home baker won our hearts with her effortless cooking and the master chef title 2016. Kirti emerged winner after tough battle with talented never give up fellow contestants - Ashima Arora, Dinesh Patel and Mirvaan Vinayak
  • Business - Manufacturing CEO - Tractors and Farm Equipment Limited, A Farm Equipment Company Known as the 'Tractor Queen' of India and a ‘Padma Shri’ awardee, Mallika has grown her family company into the third largest tractor manufacturer in the world.
  • Politics I Chief of Trinamool congress. #50WOOIcons 2016 wouldn't be complete without this Bangali austere firebrand gutsy lady politician who must speak her mind. She is just not afraid of anyone. "I am not a feminist. am a humanist and will take care of every human being. I will take care of all humanity", She said in an interview.
  • Health Care Entrepreneur I Co-FOunder and CEO of Portea Medical, a provider of home healthcare services in India. Portea's mission is to provide high-quality, affordable, healthcare at the comfort of home. @meenaganesh
  • Category: Social work, NGO Founded- Tangled 2014 Tangled provides free, organic wigs to cancer patients and boost their self-confidence. As real hair wigs for cancer patients were prohibitively expensive and that synthetic wigs were itchy and extremely uncomfortable, Meera partnered with renowned wig makers to make natural hair wigs for them at a price of Rs. 4,500 per wig. Tangled distributes these for free to the underprivileged cancer patients.
  • Health Care - Entrepreneur I Meghna Reddy, 17 year Indian Origin San Diego teen girl was heart broken to see children with missing limbs during her last visit to India. So she founded - Limbs with Love to provide 3D Printed prosthetic hands at no cost to children and adults residing here in US and all over the world. She is currently working on a prosthetic hand prototype that increases finger functionality and sensory perception.
  • Women safety Founder-SLAP (Street Level Awareness Program). After Nirabhaya case in Dec 2013, Mriganka. an ex-journalist and trained Krava Maga, a self-defence system developed for Israel Defence Force took, launched SLAP to drive the fear out of women's heart by training them for self defence. Any women can be called completely independent if she can fearlessly walk on the street at night or even drive without worrying much. Through SLAP Mriganka runs several campaigns through Delhi NCR along with national-international level organisations and equips women with safety techniques.
  • Medicine - Audiologist. Dr. Neevitha Narayan is one of the most respected audiologist in the country and is changing people's lives with her work at Sphere Speech and hearing. It is a state-of-the-art clinic established by her with the objective of providing unmatched and professional audiological care, from prevention to rehabilitation to people of all ages with speech and hearing problems. She is one on the few in the country trained in cochlear implants.
  • "Actor/Writer When it almost become a tabboo for women to come out alone on the road in night, Neha founded "Why Loitre movement" to encourage women to walk the streets in Mumbai to defy harassment. She asserts that streets should be equally safe for women too.
  • Spots - Professional Badminton player. Shuttler P V Sindhu became the country's first-ever woman silver medal winner at the Olympics when she achieved the feat at the Rio Games 2016
  • Social Enterprise. Founder - For a change,defend. Taekwondo Black Belt holder REsident, Manhattan Beach, California Pooja Nagpal won a 2016 Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes for her work teaching self-defense to 1,000 girls and women in India. In US, Pooja has actively partnered with several domestic violence shelters and teen sexual violence prevention campaigns.
  • Category - Education. Cofounder - Beehive Junior school. Preeti Lohani along with her husband founded Beehive junior schol, an all inclusive school with an object to include the children with learning disabilities so that they can learn, contribute and participate in all aspects of the life of the school. The 'so called' differently abled children work with and participate in various activities in the mainstream classrooms along with other children which brings about a sense of appreciation and acceptance by the peers.
  • Category: Mountaineering Premlata became the first Indian woman but also the oldest woman to climb all the seven peaks, she was questioned by everyone because of age. She defied all at the age of 48. Premlata received Padma shri award in 2013 . Featured as iron strong women in tata salt commercial message.
  • Business - MOney Founder- WOW WomenOnWealth I Priyanka though her venture Money Gym Program helps women create wealth. They provide financial mindset training programs and step - by-step guide for women to enable them to manage their financial lives effectively.
  • Category - Media - Films - Actor I Our list would be inclomplete without our very own Priyanka Chopra who after her victory in Bollywood, now has created her own niche in Hollywood. She featured in Time Magazine's 100 most influential people of the year. Not only that Priyanka ranks 8th in the Forbes list of most highest paid celebrities & sports personalities.
  • Category: HR, DIversity, Business Coaching. Business coach for 23+ years and Founder - Potentiamwentis & Inspira movement, Ramona's contribution to create awareness about Emotional Quotient especially among women through her movement Inspira are immense. @ramonamiranda24
  • Historian- Author of Where the stones speak and many. Rana Safvi has contributed immensely to decoding history of Delhi and Mughals as such. Rana makes a difference by not mincing her words as a woman. Be it triple talaq or the controversy over Mhd. Shami's wife, Rana doesn't hesitate to speak her mind. She is one powerful Muslim woman and definitely an icon for the likes to follow. Rana Safvi tweets @iamrana
  • Category: Technology, Social Entrepreneurship Founder - Girls Who Code. Among the top influencers in tech world , Reshma is equipping girls to pursue careers in technology and Engineering. Girls Who Code, her non-profit organisation has launched in 25 States in USA .
  • Cateogry - Environment, Social work. Meet the Mother of Trees. We visit 105-year-old Saalumarada Thimmakka who has planted and nurtured hundreds of banyan trees in rural India, in a bid to improve her environment and combat the stigma surrounding her childlessness. Featured in #100women initiative of BBC
  • Category: Sports I Indian Freestyle wrestler Sakshi Malik became the first woman wrestler from India to bag an Olympic medal -- a bronze at Rio.
  • Category: Sports, Professional tennis Player. Sania Mirza retained her World number one rank in doubles in the WTA rankings in a gruelling 2016 season in which she won eight titles, including the Australian Open with Swiss partner Martina Hingis. She was named in Time magazine's 2016 list of the 100 most influential people in the world.
  • Category: DIgital Media, Blogging. Founder - Shalu Sharma came in prominence with the launch of with a mission to create a common platform for Biharis ( People from Bihar) where they could connect and know about their home state. Having established her travel blog and authored travel guides and a dozen books, Shalu is unstoppable.
  • Category - Travel & Tourism, Blogging. "3 years ago, I gave up my home, sold most of my stuff and embraced a nomadic way of life. This journey has taken me as far within as with my feet", Shivya, top ranking travel blogger introduces herself in her blog The Shooting Star. Shivya became a Speaker at TEDx adic life, Interviewed by Responsible Travel on making conscious travel choices and got featured on Huffington Post, all in year 2016. She has changed the way women should look at travelling independently.
  • Media Founder Yourstory Shradha Sharma was one of the top 5 Linkedin influencers. Her article "How thick skinnned are you" that talked about how one felt if ones idea as an entrepreneur was rejected went viral. Shradha tweets at@SharmaShradha
  • Social Work I FOunder of Prerana, an NGO with a mission Prerana works to end intergenerational prostitution and to protect women and children from the threats of human trafficking by defending their rights and dignity, providing a safe environment, supporting their education and health. Priti Patkar started first ever night care centre for children of women who work in red light areas.
  • Category: Social Entrepreneurship I Suhani Jalota '16 is the founder of the Myna Mahila Foundation (a myna is a talkative bird and mahila means 'woman' in Hindi), a network of young women entrepreneurs launched to empower and employ poor women in Mumbai. Myna Mahilas go door to door to speak about benefits using hygienic menstrual pads and sell the menstrual pads made by them. Originally four, now they are a team of 18 women and have sold 20,000 pads, and we have 1,200 loyal customers.
  • Category: Digital Marketing and Coaching. Sunita Biddu is digital marketing and social media strategist who helps entrepreneurs make money with the help of technology. Sunita talks about various social media strategies and help guides through her blog and various workshops. She is especially known for her power blogging.
  • Category - Media, Blogging. Interior Designer, Author, columnist & blogger, the multi-talented Twinkle Khanna renounced her much inherited Bollywood career the moment she got to know the occupational hazards as she puts it. A renowned interior designer, author, now Twinkle better known as Mrsfunnybones makes us laugh with her witty articles and lame jokes. Being a woman, she is funny, gutsy and so apt. But we love her! Completely. Twinkle tweets @Mrsfunnybones
  • Category: Venture Capital I StartUp Venture capitalist Vani Kola is MD of Kalaari Capital an early stage Venture capital firm based in Benguluru. An ex-silicon valley successful entrepreneur, Vani is committed to bring up entrepreneurship in India. She works with first-time entrepreneurs focusing on tech companies. @VaniKola"
  • Social Entrepreneurship Varsha cofounded The Wordsworth Project with here college batchmates Priyanka Roy Choudhary and Rahul Sreekumar to improve language competency in children by creating interactive learning spaces in low resource schools and learning centres. WHat's unique about the Wordsworth Project is that it keeps children specific learning level and accordingly equip them with books and learnings.

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