[Photo from asiasociety.org]
By: Gabriela Yareliz
As we continue to celebrate women throughout the month of March, I felt the hall of fame would be entirely incomplete without Shirin Ebadi.
Ms. Ebadi is a human rights defender and the first female judge of Iran. After the 1979 revolution, she was dismissed as judge and no longer permitted to serve. She was demoted to a secretarial position. I am not kidding. She did not quit, and she continued to submit her application for the posts she desired. It wasn’t until 1993 that she was permitted to practice as an attorney, again.
She is also a winner of the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize. She was awarded the Prize for “her efforts for democracy and human rights. She has focused especially on the struggle for the rights of women and children.” She is the first Iranian to ever win the prize. Talk about living #thatshahlife! Her award was also the first award to be confiscated by authorities (Iranian authorities took it away), but nothing stops this woman.
She is the founder of Defenders for Human Rights Center in Iran and Society for Protecting the Rights of the Child (SPRC).
Today, she is featured because she is a woman who has persevered and lived courageously. She has stared down fear and danger, and she continues to fight for equality and a better world.
“How can you defy fear? Fear is a human instinct, just like hunger. Whether you like it or not, you become hungry. Similarly with fear. But I have learned to train myself to live with this fear.” Shirin Ebadi