Browse this section for short profiles of some of the thousands of Jewish women found throughout jwa.org. We will be adding new profiles to this section regularly and welcome your suggestions for women to add.
Naomi Kassan Amir was a pioneer in pediatric neurology in part because of her holistic approach, seeing each child not just in terms of their disability but in the context of their family and their community.
After years of offering medical help to refugees, Lynn Amowitz decided she needed to solve the problems at their source: the human rights violations driving refugees from their homes.
Birdie Amsterdam capped a career of firsts in the legal profession with her role as the first woman elected to the New York State Supreme Court.
Sadie Cecelia Friedman Annenberg gave generously to Jewish causes both in the US and Israel.
Ruth Nanda Anshen created connections between the great thinkers of different fields, offering them opportunities to explain their work to each other and the general public.
Eleanor Antin explored issues of gender, race, and identity by taking on personae of various outsiders in her performance art, installation art, and films.
An immigrant girl who achieved literary fame at the age of thirteen, Mary Antin became a symbol of the American dream.
Using both field research and her own experiences posing as a pregnant woman, Joyce Antler not only helped repeal New York’s laws against abortion, but ensured that women had real access to medical services after the law was repealed.
Anna Appel was known for her performance of motherly characters in Yiddish and English roles on stage and screen.
Wildly controversial in her lifetime, Diane Arbus was only fully recognized for her contributions to the art of photography after her death.
As a Sephardic Jew from Argentina, Rita Arditti’s experience as “a minority within a minority” drove her to document another invisible group: the grandmothers of the disappeared children.
Hannah Arendt grappled with the Holocaust throughout her lifetime, creating the concept of “the banality of evil” to understand the widespread complicity in the mass killings.
The first American woman accepted into the groundbreaking cooperative Magnum Photos, Eve Arnold was hailed for both her photojournalism and her more artistic work.
Margaret Gene Arnstein’s belief that nurses should be involved in health policy and research helped transform her profession.
Jeannette Arons served in a variety of roles with the National Council of Jewish Women, from helping juvenile offenders rebuild their lives to helping Jewish immigrants become citizens.
Adrien Arpel started her own business two days out of high school, becoming a leader in the field of cosmetics for her innovations in department store makeovers and her belief that women needed knowledgeable advice tailored to their needs.
Bea Arthur made a career of playing formidable, opinionated women in movies and on television.
Dora Askowith tried to galvanize Jewish students into social activism and leadership by teaching them the history of their faith.
Ellen Auerbach was remarkable both for her avant-garde photography and for her innovative and successful ringl+pit studio where she and fellow artist Grete Stern signed all their work collaboratively.
Beatrice Fox Auerbach ran her family’s department store, G. Fox and Company, for thirty years, introducing innovations to customer service and helping women and minorities climb the corporate ladder.
Sophie Cahn Axman became known as “the angel of the Tombs” for her work as a probation officer helping troubled children.
Through her art, Helène Aylon explored the intersectionality among her feminism, the Orthodox Judaism of her upbringing, and her place in a war-torn world.
Lauren Bacall smoldered on screen with what became known as her signature “look,” glancing up with a downturned chin, shining in her roles both alone and opposite her husband, Humphrey Bogart.
Bertha Badt-Strauss used her writing to create a broader range of possible identities for women in the cultural Zionist movement called the Jewish Renaissance.
Edith Jacobi Baerwald devoted her energy to philanthropic organizations, but also loved connecting directly with the people she helped through her volunteer work at settlement houses.
How to cite this page
Jewish Women's Archive. "People." (Viewed on September 22, 2014) <http://jwa.org/people>.