The two iconic women have been added to a previously announced list of women to be honored during Women’s History Month in March. The Hall of Fame said, “The 2024 inductee class has broken barriers, challenged the status quo, and left an impact on history,” according to AP News.
Williams and Bridges became available after the date and location of the ceremony were adjusted, according to a spokesperson, and they will join the eight other honorees who were revealed in the spring.
The article also mentioned that the Hall of Fame announced that the induction ceremony would be televised nationwide during prime time, starting in New York City, for the first time.
The preceding 30 ceremonies were held in and around Seneca Falls, New York, the location of the first Women’s Rights Convention and home to the National Women’s Hall of Fame.
Jennifer Gabriel, the Hall of Fame’s chief executive, said in a statement, “The 2024 class of inductees are scientists, activists, performers, and athletes who are the changemakers of today and inspiration for the women of tomorrow. Their dedication, drive, and talent got them here, and we’re thrilled to honor them on the national stage.”
The public nominates women to be considered for the Hall of Fame, and their nominations are then assessed by an experienced selection committee.
The 42-year-old Williams is the only athlete to have ever won a fashion icon award. She is a 23-time Grand Slam tennis champion and the record holder for the longest player ranked No. 1 in history.
In 1960, Bridges, now 69, enrolled in one of the first black schools in New Orleans‘ segregated schools as a 6-year-old first-grader. Norman Rockwell replicated the event in his 1963 painting “The Problem We All Live With.” She founded the Ruby Bridges Foundation 24 years ago to promote tolerance and transformation through education.
Other notable black nominees include Loretta Ross, 69, founder of the National Center for Human Rights Education in Atlanta and Dr. Patricia Bath, the first Black woman physician to receive a medical patent.