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7 Badass Trailblazers in the Military and Government Services

Get to know these badass trailblazers!

Molly Williams was the slave of a wealthy merchant who was a volunteer for the Oceanus Company. When an influenza epidemic broke out, and many of the men were too ill to respond to calls, Williams stepped in. She became known as Volunteer 11 and was known as effective as any of the men in her fire station at fighting fires.

Cathay Williams was the first Black female to enlist in the US Army. At the time of her enlistment, women were not allowed to serve, so she signed up under the assumed name “William Cathay.” She served for two years until complications from smallpox led a military physician to discover that she was female. She was discharged from the Army in 1868.

“Stagecoach” Mary Fields became the first Black American woman to hold a star route delivery contract with the United States Postal Service.

Carolyn R. Payton became the first Black American and first woman appointed Director of the US Peace Corps when she was appointed to the position by President Jimmy Carter.

Lisa P. Jackson became the first Black American to be named Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. She was appointed to the position by President Barack Obama.

First Black American woman four-star admiral: Michelle J. Howard. She was the first woman to rise to the rank of four-star admiral in the US Navy. Howard was also the first Black American

woman to command a US Navy ship, the USS Rushmore. When she retired, she was serving as both commander of US Forces in Europe and as the commander of US Forces in Africa. She was the first woman to command operational forces for the US military.

Lorna Mahlock became the first Black American woman to hold the rank of Brigadier General in the United States Marine Corps.

-- A creator of safe spaces, and an initiator of difficult conversations, M.J. Fievre, B.S. Ed, spent much time building up her Black students, helping them feel comfortable in their skin, and affirming their identities. Her close relationships with parents and students led her to look more closely at how we can balance protecting our child’s innocence with preparing them for the realities of Black life. When―and how―do you approach racism with your children? How do you protect their physical and mental health while also preparing them for a country full of systemic racism? She began to research the issue and speak to school counselors and psychologists to find (and apply!) strategies parents and teachers can use with their children to broach uncomfortable but necessary topics.

M.J. is the author of Badass Black Girl, a daily dose of affirmations for Black Girls

“You'll come away from Badass Black Girl feeling as if you've known the author your entire life, and it's a rare feat for any writer.” ―“Mike, the Poet,” author of Dear Woman and The Boyfriend Book

#1 Gift Idea in Teen & Young Adult Cultural Heritage Biographies, Publishers Weekly Select Title for Young Readers

Affirmations for strong, fearless Black girls. Wisdom from Badass Black female trailblazers who accomplished remarkable things in literature, entertainment, education, STEM, business, military and government services, politics and law, activism, sports, spirituality, and more.

Explore the many facets of your identity through hundreds of big and small questions. In this journal designed for teenage Black girls, MJ Fievre tackles topics such as family and friends, school and careers, body image, and stereotypes. By reflecting on these topics, you will confront the issues that can hold you back from living your best life and discovering your Black girl bliss.

Embrace authenticity and celebrate who you are. Finding the courage to live as you are is not easy, so here’s a journal designed to help you nurture creativity, positive self-awareness and Black girl bliss. This journal honors the strength and spirit of Black girls.

Change the way you view the world. This journal provides words of encouragement that seek to inspire and ignite discussion. You are growing up in a world that tries to tell you how to look and act. MJ Fievre encourages you to fight the flow and determine for yourself who you want to be.

Badass Black Girl helps you to:

  • Build and boost your self-esteem with powerful affirmations

  • Learn more about yourself through insightful journaling

  • Become comfortable and confident in your authentic self


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