Meet Tererai Trent, a Zimbabwean scholar, who is one of ten women being honored with statues for their inspiring efforts to promote gender equality.
She was nominated alongside media mogul Oprah Winfrey, Hollywood stars Nicole Kidman, Cate Blanchett, and the popstar Pink.
The list includes conservationist Jane Goodall, activist Janet Mock, chemist Tracy Dyson, author Cheryl Strayed and Olympic gymnast Gabby Douglas.
All 10 women will have life-size bronze figures unveiled by StatuesforEquality in the United States on Women’s Equality Day on August 26.
Trent, 54, was kept out of school for most of her childhood because of poverty and being a female but she taught herself how to read and write while living with her parents in rural Zimbabwe.
She relocated to the US in 1998 after she was discovered by an American non-profit that visited her village.
She has since achieved her dreams of getting a masters and a doctorate. The US-based academic faced domestic abuse in the pursuit of her dreams and continues to champion girls and women empowerment through education.
Her inspirational story caught the attention of Oprah Winfrey who gave Trent $1.5 million donations to rebuild her elementary school in Zimbabwe in partnership with Save the Children in 2011.