Worldwide Guide to Women in Leadership

Queen Salote Tupou III of Tonga (1918-65)

Sirivamo Bandaranaike, Prime Minister in Sri Lanka 1960

Olga Ruder-Zeynek,Chairperson of the Austrian Bundersrat 1927-28 and 1932

Nina Bang, Minister of Education in Denmark (1924-26)

Isabel Peron, President of Argentina 1974-76

G.K.T. Chiepe, Foreign Minister Botswana 1974-94

Victoria Chaflin Woodhull, Presidential Candidate in USA in 1872

Miriam Wallace Ferguson, Governor of Texas 1925-27 and 1933-35

1898-1918 Co-Leader of the Social Democrats Rosa Luxemburg, Germany

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Women State Leaders and Women rulers throughout the ages

Women Ministers and Female Heads of Government

Women Leaders Currently in Office

Women Chairpersons of Parliments and Members of Parliament Presidiums - By Country 

Women Party Leaders - By Country

Women Local Leaders

Women Presidential Candidates

Women Ambassadors


Women Clergy and Ecclesicastical Territories


Women Police and Military

Women Leaders in Denmark





This site is dedicated to the women who have ruled since the beginning of times - or as long as the sources date back - and those holding political offices to the present day.

There have always been female rulers. Egyptian Queens are believed to have governed from around 3000 BCE, and the first to be named by the sources without any doubt is Ku-baba, who ruled the Mesopotamian City-State of Ur around 2500 BCE.

First female ministers in the world
However, it was not until during and just after the World War I that the first few women became members of the revolutionary governments in Ukraine, Russia, Hungary and Ireland. Nina Bang, Danish Minister of Education 1924-26, was the first woman to be minister in democratically elected parliamentary government. See more in First female ministers. Nevertheless, development was slow and it was not until the end of the 20th century that female ministers stopped being unusual, though a number of countries don't have women in their governments at the moment.

First female Prime Minister and President in the world
In 1960 Sirivamo Bandaranaike of Sri Lanka became the world's first female elected Premier Minister and in 1974, Isabel Perón of Argentina became the first woman President - one woman had been Acting Head of Government and two women Acting Heads of State before that.

In 2009 Monaco became the last country in the world to have it's first female member of government. 1999 Sweden became the first country to have more female ministers than male. 11 women and 9 men and in 2007 the Finish government had 60% women.

Current female heads of state and government
There are 193 members of the United Nations, 2 independent states outside, a few self-declared de-facto independent states and many self-ruling decencies. There are currently 29 female leaders in countries or self-ruling territories (The lowest number for several years).

Of the 25 monarchies, there are reigning Queens in 2 countries: Denmark and the United Kingdom - and the latter is represented by female Governor Generals in 4 of the other 15 countries in which she is also Queen; The Bahamas, Grenada, New Zealand and Saint Lucia. They function as their countries' de-facto Heads of State.

The 13 current female Presidents are in Chile, Croatia, Estonia, Liberia, Lithuania, Malta, the Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Nepal, San Marino (Two joint Heads of State) Switzerland and Taiwan

And currently there are 10 woman Prime Ministers; in Bangladesh, Germany, Namibia, Norway, Poland and United Kingdom, as well as in the self-governing territories of Srpska, Turk & Caicos Islands, the Åland Islands and Hong Kong (Designate)

In addition, Aung San Suu Ky is State Councillor and De-facto leader of Myanmar.

Content of
The site contains lists of female Heads of State listed by country, a chronological list of Women in Power from B.C. 3000, female Prime Ministers, Ministers of Finance and Ministers of Defence and Ministers by country, female Chairpersons of Parliament, female Governors, Premiers and local Leaders by country, female Party Leaders for each country, a chronological list of female Presidential Candidates, Ambassadors to the United Nations and first female ambassadors for each country, lists of women's ordination to priesthood and female bishops and finally a list of female Danish leaders. (See entries to the left).