How readers, colleagues, experts pick USA TODAY’s Women of the Year

We’re often asked how we select USA TODAY’s Women of the Year. The answer? With your help.

Each year, we ask you to tell us about deserving women in your communities – those who are leading change, modeling success, lifting up others – and every year, you respond. (Know someone we should consider for next year? Please tell us about her!)

We also collect recommendations from colleagues across the USA TODAY Network and leaders in the public and private sector. In some instances, previous honorees have suggested women to consider.

In the end, a diverse panel of experts helped identify our final honorees. The panel was crucial in our selection, and we are grateful for their time and effort. 

Anthea M. Hartig

Anthea Hartig

Jaclyn Nash

Anthea M. Hartig is the Elizabeth MacMillan Director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History and the first woman to hold the position since the museum opened in 1964. Hartig oversees 257 employees, a budget of more than $40 million and a collection that includes 1.8 million objects and more than 3 shelf-miles of archives. An award-winning public historian and cultural heritage expert, Hartig is dedicated to making the nation’s richly diverse history accessible, inclusive and relevant.

Nikki Lane

Nikki Lane

Carletta G Photo

Nikki Lane is an interdisciplinary scholar trained as a cultural and linguistic anthropologist. Her work explores issues related to American popular culture, urban spatial politics, and sexual cultures throughout the African diaspora. Her first book, “The Black Queer Work of Ratchet: Race, Gender, Sexuality, and the (Anti)Politics of Respectability,” explores the use of the word “ratchet” in a community of Black queer women in Washington, D.C. She is an assistant professor in Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies at Duke University. 

Jill Tietjen

Jill Tietjen


Jill Tietjen is an author, international speaker and electrical engineer. After more than 45 years in the electric utility industry, her focus is now on women’s advocacy worldwide. She has published 12 books, including two award-winning bestsellers, “Her Story: A Timeline of the Women Who Changed America” and “Hollywood: Her Story, An Illustrated History of Women and the Movies.” Her latest award-winning book, “Over, Under, Around and Through: How Hall of Famers Surmount Obstacles,” was released in May 2022. An inductee into the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame and the Colorado Authors’ Hall of Fame and the National Academy of Construction, she formerly served as CEO of the National Women’s Hall of Fame in Seneca Falls, New York, the birthplace of women’s rights.

Hilary N. Weaver

Hilary Weaver

Onion Studio

Hilary N. Weaver, who holds a doctorate in social work, is the board chair for the Council on Social Work Education, the inaugural Global Indigenous Commissioner for the International Federation of Social Workers, and president of the Indigenous and Tribal Social Work Educators Association. As a social worker, educator and researcher, most of her work focuses on the importance of culture in helping processes with a particular focus on Indigenous peoples and a secondary focus on refugees. She is Lakota and has lived much of her adult life in Haudenosaunee territory in western New York. In recognition of her lifelong contributions to promote American Indians in social work education, in 2017 she became the youngest person to be awarded the American Indian Elder Award from the Indigenous and Tribal Social Work Educators’ Association. In 2020 she was inducted as a Social Work Pioneer by the National Association of Social Workers.

Cid Wilson

Cid Wilson

Juan Torrico

Cid Wilson is the president and CEO of the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility. He manages a staff of talented and dedicated professionals and works closely with corporate board members, Hispanic organizations, and corporate partners around the country to increase the representation of Hispanics at all levels in corporate America. Additionally, Wilson directs programs and initiatives aimed at encouraging Fortune 500 companies to include Hispanics in the areas of employment, procurement, philanthropy and governance.

Kristen DelGuzzi

Kristen DelGuzzi


Kristen DelGuzzi is editor of USA TODAY’s Women of the Year project and was senior director of Opinion, Engagement & Partnerships. She joined USA TODAY in 2018 as managing editor for politics and world, then moved in 2021 to Opinion, where she built an ideologically, demographically and geographically diverse team. She previously was at The Arizona Republic, where she was part of teams that were finalists for breaking news Pulitzer Prizes in 2012 and 2014 and the team that won the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for explanatory reporting. DelGuzzi is a graduate of Kent State University, which honored her in 2018 with the Taylor Award, the School of Journalism’s highest recognition.

12:04 pm UTC Mar. 17, 2023
12:57 pm UTC Mar. 17, 2023

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