Flip on CNN or MSNBC and you’re likely to see Erin Burnett right OutFront or Rachel Maddow giving you their takes on the state of the union. Female journalists are everywhere nowadays, but that wasn’t always the norm.
It took Barbara Walters to open up the world of nightly news, Maragret Fuller to send women overseas as foreign correspondents, and the unwavering Helen Thomas to crack the White House Press Corps.
Female journalists—and women everywhere—owe a great debt to these muckraking matriarchs. Here are 15 reporters that all took a generous swing at the glass ceiling.
That’s not to say it’s always easy for women.
To this day, journalists in distant war zones are often in the line of fire, and female journalists often face particular safety concerns, especially when their work attacks gender stereotypes.
The United Nations is collaborating on the launch of a global survey on violence against female journalists, to get a sense of crimes that may never be reported as a result of “powerful cultural and professional stigmas,” according to Hannah Storm, director of the International News Safety Institute.
The survey is confidential due to the sensitive nature of many of the attacks women face, which can range from bullying and emotional harassment, to sexual assaults, rapes and threats against their loved ones.
The United Nations plans to use the survey’s results to help develop recommendations in its plan of action on the safety of journalists in conflict and non-conflict situations.
Here’s the survey (and yes, men can take it, too):