Rear Admiral Grace Hopper

One of the most influential tech pioneers in history, Rear Admiral Grace Hopper was the first woman to receive a Ph.D. in mathematics. Her expertise allowed her to join the U.S. Naval Reserve during World War II to work on the Mark I computer. After the war, she remained in the U.S. Navy as a reserve officer, working with the more advanced Mark II and Mark III computers.

Grace also helped create the first compiler for computer languages, and was the first female recipient of the National Medal of Technology in 1991. In 2016, she was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for her many contributions to the field of computing.

To honor her legacy and inspire future generations of women in tech, Dr. Anita Borg and Dr. Telle Whitney founded the Grace Hopper Celebration (GHC) in 1994. Today, GHC is the world’s largest gathering of women technologists, where women from around the world learn, network, and celebrate their achievements.