[United States Statutes at Large, Volume 124, 111th Congress, 2nd Session]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office, www.gpo.gov]

 
PROCLAMATION 8481--MAR. 2, 2010

Proclamation 8481 of March 2, 2010
Women's History Month, 2010
By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation

Countless women have steered the course of our history, and their
stories are ones of steadfast determination. From reaching for the
ballot box to breaking barriers on athletic fields and battlefields,
American women have stood resolute in the face of adversity and overcome
obstacles to realize their full measure of success. Women's History
Month is an opportunity for us to recognize the contributions women have
made to our Nation, and to honor those who blazed trails for women's
empowerment and equality.
Women from all walks of life have improved their communities and our
Nation. Sylvia Mendez and her family stood up for her right to an
education and catalyzed the desegregation of our schools. Starting as a
caseworker in city government, Dr. Dorothy Height has dedicated her life
to building a more just society. One of our young heroes, Caroline

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Moore, contributed to advances in astronomy by discovering a supernova
at age 14.
When women like these reach their potential, our country as a whole
prospers. That is the duty of our Government--not to guarantee success,
but to ensure all Americans can achieve it. My Administration is working
to fulfill this promise with initiatives like the White House Council on
Women and Girls, which promotes the importance of taking women and girls
into account in Federal policies and programs. This council is committed
to ensuring our Government does all it can to give our daughters the
chance to achieve their dreams.
As we move forward, we must correct persisting inequalities. Women
comprise over 50 percent of our population but hold fewer than 17
percent of our congressional seats. More than half our college students
are female, yet when they graduate, their male classmates still receive
higher pay on average for the same work. Women also hold
disproportionately fewer science and engineering jobs. That is why my
Administration launched our Educate to Innovate campaign, which will
inspire young people from all backgrounds to drive America to the
forefront of science, technology, engineering, and math. By increasing
women's participation in these fields, we will foster a new generation
of innovators to follow in the footsteps of the three American women
selected as 2009 Nobel Laureates.
Our Nation's commitment to women's rights must not end at our own
borders, and my Administration is making global women's empowerment a
core pillar of our foreign policy. My Administration created the first
Office for Global Women's Issues and appointed an Ambassador at Large to
head it. We are working with the United Nations and other international
institutions to support women's equality and to curtail violence against
women and girls, especially in situations of war and conflict. We are
partnering internationally to improve women's welfare through targeted
investments in agriculture, nutrition, and health, as well as programs
that empower women to contribute to economic and social progress in
their communities. And we are following through on the commitments I
made in Cairo to promote access to education, improve literacy, and
expand employment opportunities for women and girls.
This month, let us carry forth the legacy of our mothers and
grandmothers. As we honor the women who have shaped our Nation, we must
remember that we are tasked with writing the next chapter of women's
history. Only if we teach our daughters that no obstacle is too great
for them, that no ceiling can block their ascent, will we inspire them
to reach for their highest aspirations and achieve true equality.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of
America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and
the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim March 2010 as Women's
History Month. I call upon all our citizens to observe this month with
appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities that honor the history,
accomplishments, and contributions of American women.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this second day of
March, in the year of our Lord two thousand ten, and of the Inde-

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pendence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-
fourth.
BARACK OBAMA