Pinky Mashiane, 49

Pinky Mashiane, 49

Founder and president of the United Domestic Workers of South Africa
United Domestic Workers of South Africa (Udwosa)
Pretoria

The founder of the United Domestic Workers of South Africa has championed the rights of those in an often ignored sector. Pinky Mashiane is not the type of trade unionist we often find today. The founder and president of United Domestic Workers of South Africa...

Sarah Smit | mg.co.za
Nokuzola Ndwandwe, 26

Nokuzola Ndwandwe, 26

Menstrual Health Activist
Team Free Sanitary Pads
KwaHlabisa, KwaZulu-Natal

Nokuzola Ndwandwe is championing access to sanitation, menstrual health and gender equality. By 2030, Nokuzola Ndwandwe imagines a world that has ended gender inequality and eradicated period poverty. Her part in making this vision a reality is through her activism....

Nelisiwe Msomi | mg.co.za
Malaika Mahlatsi, 28

Malaika Mahlatsi, 28

Senior speechwriter to the executive mayor in the City of Ekurhuleni
City of Ekurhuleni
Johannesburg

Being a woman in a patriarchal society has its pitfalls, but Malaika Mahlasti says this should not stop women from assuming their rightful place in the world. Malaika Mahlatsi’s best-selling book, Memories of a Born-Free (2014), begins with a powerful letter to the...

Thando Maeko | mg.co.za
Nardos Bekele-Thomas, 61

Nardos Bekele-Thomas, 61

Resident Coordinator and Resident Representative
United Nations
South Africa

From Ethiopia to the US, she has influenced social justice wherever she has been. Nardos Bekele-Thomas is currently the resident coordinator of the United Nations (UN) and resident representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in South Africa. At...

Eyaaz Matwadia | mg.co.za
Muditambi Ravele, 58

Muditambi Ravele, 58

Founder
South African Women and Sports Foundation
Johannesburg

Ravele is a leading woman, creating space for women in sports. If sport and women empowerment had an equation, Muditambi Ravele would be the answer to it. The 58-year-old hails from the royal lineage of the Ravele clan chieftaincy and is related to the king of the...

Nelisiwe Msomi | mg.co.za
Nomahlubi Jakuja, 30

Nomahlubi Jakuja, 30

Economic policy researcher
National department of health
Johannesburg

Politics and economics top achiever. Nomahlubi Jakuja describes herself as an opportunist because she has an eye for opportunity and is never afraid to seize one, a trait she believes she inherited from her father. The 30-year-old from Johannesburg is the youngest of...

Nelisiwe Msomi | mg.co.za
Lungi Mamabolo, 37

Lungi Mamabolo, 37

Key Accounts Manager
Progress Administrators
Klipfontein View, Midrand

Communities are built by women who have open hearts and open doors to help those in need and take charge when the state fails people all the time. “My proudest moments are when I walk away from any scene having offered some assistance,” says Lungi Mamabolo. The...

Fatima Moosa | mg.co.za
Karen Dudley, 56

Karen Dudley, 56

Director of Education from ECD to grade nine
Western Cape Education Department
Bellville, City Cape Town, South Africa

Passion is not the only thing that drives Karen Dudley to excel but it is her purpose, which is the strongest connection to the soul. “When someone says to me ‘you can’t’, I make sure I upskill myself and those around me and I say ‘go for it’.” “Take time to listen...

Fatima Moosa | mg.co.za