Today Oprah released the inaugural SuperSoul 100 List. It's described as "a collection of 100 awakened leaders who are using their voices and talent to elevate humanity."
The list is an outgrowth of the weekly inspirational OWN series. Take a look at the 14 Black women who made the list. View the entire list here.
With a name that means “power” in Zulu, Amandla Stenberg is a 17-year-old trailblazing force who has been called “one of 2016’s most important voices.” Born in Los Angeles, Amandla began modeling for Disney at the age of four and landed national commercials for McDonald’s, Walmart, Kmart, Boeing and Marshalls. She appeared on the big screen for the first time in 2011 in Colombiana as a young Zoe Saldana and, a year later, became an international “shero” as Rue in the blockbuster film The Hunger Games. Since then, Amandla’s resounding roar and social media activism for race, gender and sexuality equality have been heard around the world.
Shortly after Angela M. Davis’s career as a professional athlete ended, she started a family with her husband and became a stay-at-home mom. At home with their sons, Angela felt as if she was fulfilling her highest calling. “My soul was tugged by the creator to take my gifts to others that were waiting,” she says. “In obedience, my journey to sell out to purpose continued. I merged movement with inspiration as I was called to do.”
Ava DuVernay is a writer, producer, director and distributor of independent film.
Nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture, her most recent film Selma chronicles the historic 1965 voting rights campaign led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Felicia has dedicated her life’s work to the people who need the most: the outsiders. Through the American Jewish World Service, she has had opportunities to work with marginalized communities abroad. She works for the sex workers in Cambodia, the transgender community in Uganda, the people without water rights in Bolivia and the disenfranchised Haitians in The Dominican Republic.
At 19 years old, India began writing her own songs as catharsis. In 2001, with the release of her first album Acoustic Soul, India quickly learned that there were many other people who, like her, needed to hear songs that heal. India’s journey has proven her theory that the vibration of words and music really do matter in the shaping of consciousness and culture.
Iyanla Vanzant is an OWN fan favorite as the host and executive producer of the critically acclaimed and award-winning reality series Iyanla: Fix My Life. She is one of the most recognizable spiritual life coaches in the country, a minister, a mother and the author of more than fifteen books. With her no-nonsense approach to personal development, empowerment and faith, Ebony magazine says, “Iyanla’s books, lectures and television appearances have made her a multimedia high priestess of healthy relationships.” Iyanla is a regular contributor to O, The Oprah Magazine. She spent the fall of 2014 traveling the country as a featured trailblazer on Oprah’s The Life You Want Weekend tour. Iyanla’s OCourse, “Forgiveness with Iyanla,” is available on demand on Oprah.com. In December, she will release her latest book, Trust: Mastering the 4 Essential Trusts: Trust in God, Trust in Yourself, Trust in Others, Trust in Life.
Janet Mock is the New York Times best-selling author of the book, Redefining Realness, and host of the culture series, So POPular!. She is a sought-after speaker and the founder of #GirlsLikeUs, a social media project that empowers trans women. Prior to opening up about her own journey as a young trans woman, Janet knew she wanted to create a space for people to show up authentically as their whole selves. Her book became one of those spaces, where she could model vulnerability with her own story and center herself as her own heroine. Since then she has become one of the most influential trans women and millennial feminists in media.
At the age of 19, Jessica Matthews invented the SOCCKET ball, an energy generating soccer ball that provides off-grid power for the developing world. At the age of 22, she founded Uncharted Play, a renewable energy company specializing in motion-based, miniaturized power systems. Expanding her reach to global infrastructural projects, at the age of 26, Jessica became a co-founder and executive director for KDDC, a 30 megawatt hydropower dam in Nigeria—one of the first to be privatized in the country.
As a maternity maven/lifestyle guru, Latham has had the distinct honor of witnessing one of the most transformative processes of one’s life—giving birth. “Birth is imbued with ritual and seeing women at their most powerful and most vulnerable is a gift that I cherish,” Latham says. In her practice, she strives to transform not only how women give birth, but also how they give rise to the best version of themselves.
Luvvie Ajayi is an award-winning writer and digital strategist who thrives at the intersection of comedy, technology and activism. She’s a professional troublemaker who values saying what is necessary, even when it’s difficult, and speaking truth to power is her superpower.
Sixteen-year-old Maya is the founder and CEO of Maya’s Ideas, an eco-friendly accessories company started in 2008 when she was 8 years old. When Maya started her business, she says she knew two things: all of her products had to be eco-friendly and she had to put her profits towards making an impact.
Sarah Elizabeth Lewis
Sarah Elizabeth Lewis is an author, a curator and a professor at Harvard University. Her book, The Rise: Creativity, the Gift of Failure, and the Search for Mastery, is a Los Angeles Times bestseller that was inspired by wanting to investigate the capacity of the human spirit. The book has been translated into six languages and has been made required reading at universities. Her TED Global talk on the theme of The Rise was named one of the best of the year and has been watched nearly 2 million times.
Multi-talented actress, platinum-selling recording artist, and newly announced COVERGIRL, Zendaya, is quickly becoming one of this generation’s most influential rising stars. Most recently, Zendaya has released her new single “Something New” featuring Chris Brown. Since its release the song has hit #3 on the iTunes R&B chart, #7 on Shazam’s Future Hits chart, and already has 1.5 million streams on Spotify.
Zim Ugochukwu is the founder & CEO of Travel Noire. Travel Noire was founded with one lofty goal in mind: to make international travel more inclusive and representative of explorers of color—in turn, inspiring them to frequently explore new destinations.