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.
Poet and scholar Joy Ladin is the first openly transgender employee of an Orthodox institution, Yeshiva University’s Stern College.
Hailed by director Max Reinhart as “the most beautiful woman in Europe,” actress Hedy Lamarr also patented what would become a key component of wireless technology.
Highly unusual for her time, Sara Landau not only made a name for herself as a respected economist, but paired her scholarship with inexhaustible volunteerism both in her community and through national organizations.
Ann Landers counseled millions of readers through her popular advice column for over forty years on issues from the growing pains of adolescence to the grief of widowhood with wit, humor, kindness, and good sense.
Ruth Schlossberg Landes made her mark as one of the first professional female anthropologists with her work on gender and religious identity in different cultures.
After a car accident left Rabbi Lynne Landsberg struggling with a traumatic brain injury, she devoted her career to ensuring that Jews with disabilities have full access to the richness of Jewish life.
A disciplined administrator who put her own safety at risk time and again for others, Rae Landy helped Hadassah establish the first nursing service in Israel and then served as a military nurse in the US Armed Services.
Pearl Lang was the first dancer Martha Graham allowed to perform some of her roles, and brought elements of the ecstatic poetry and dance of Hasidic and Sephardic Jewish traditions to her own critically praised work as a dancer and choreographer.
Though her work was largely uncredited and behind the scenes, Lucy Fox Robins Lang contributed greatly to both the labor movement and the anarchist movement as aide and confidante to major figures like Emma Goldman and Samuel Gompers.
Sherry Lee Heiman Lansing broke barriers as the first woman studio executive when she became head of 20th Century Fox in 1980, going on to lead Paramount Studios to create wildly successful blockbusters like Forrest Gump, Braveheart, and Titanic.
Ruth Meckler Laredo’s astonishing piano performances caused one New York Times reporter to write, “Her hands sometimes appear to hover over the keys, a blur to the eyes if not the ears…But what hummingbird ever packed such power?“
Estée Lauder became a household name for beauty thanks to the luxurious makeup, lotions, and perfumes she created and marketed.
Linda Lavin won a Tony for her work in theater, but was best known for her Emmy-winning lead role in the television show Alice.
Nigella Lawson’s numerous cookbooks and cooking shows have earned her the (often fraught) title of domestic goddess.
Emma Lazarus’s famous poem “The New Colossus” helped the Statue of Liberty greet millions, but still reflected her experience of the mixed welcome that minorities faced in America.
Margaret Lazarus used her talents as an independent filmmaker to bring attention to issues ranging from rape culture to nuclear threat.
After the death of her famous sister Emma, Josephine Lazarus emerged as a writer and activist in her own right.
Proud of her Jewish heritage but conflicted about her faith, Rachel Mordecai Lazarus was torn between publicly fighting anti-Semitism and privately questioning Judaism’s ideals.
The first woman composer to earn a degree from the University of Michigan, Elaine Friedman Lebenbom responded to sexism and anti-Semitism by composing works that celebrated Jewish themes and women’s experiences.
With her husband and daughters, Tillie LeBlang created a multi–million–dollar box office that transformed the way Broadway shows sold tickets.
Known as much for her signature men’s jackets, cowboy boots, and tortoiseshell glasses as for her stunning (and often scathing) social commentary, Fran Lebowitz has spent a lifetime critiquing cultural norms.
Malka Lee’s lyrical Yiddish poems won over both critics and general American Jewish audiences, but it was her work dedicated to the family she lost in the Holocaust that had the most lasting impact.
As director of the Rhea Hirsch School of Education at Hebrew Union College, Sara Lee helped transform day schools, Hebrew schools and other Jewish institutions.
Both with her husband and in her own right, Edith Altschul Lehman funded endeavors from building schools in Israel to creating a children’s zoo in Central Park.
How to cite this page
Jewish Women's Archive. "Profiles." (Viewed on December 12, 2017) <https://jwa.org/people/toc/L>.