Tell Us: Who Are the Women Who Make Palm Desert?

And watch "Makers," a landmark documentary featuring compelling stories about the women who have changed America—and the world.

Activists and authors. Diplomats and developers. Journalists and justices.

They’re all women who have blazed trails and shaped the world in which we live. And now they’re telling their stories in Makers: The Women Who Make America, debuting Tuesday, Feb. 26, on PBS.

The women featured in the landmark digital and video initiative from AOL and PBS represent everyday groundbreakers and high-profile pioneers. The documentary examines the movement for equality, and shows how change didn't come easy.

“It never, ever occurred to me that I could be Secretary of State,” says Madeleine Albright.

Who are the women who have lead the way in Palm Desert? Who do you look up to as a trailblazer in town? Tell us in the comments section below.

Makers is the “remarkable story of the most sweeping social revolution in American history, as women have asserted their rights to a full and fair share of political power, economic opportunity, and personal autonomy.”

In the documentary, feminist Gloria Steinem recalls the start of the women’s movement.

“We thought these injustices were so great, surely if we just explain them to people—[laughing]—they will want to fix them.”

And artist and activist Faith Ringgold offers a realization she discovered early on.

“You can’t sit around waiting for someone else to say you who you are. You need to write it and paint it and do it.”

The world premiere broadcast is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 26, at 8 p.m. Eastern on PBS.

Joanne Ohanesian February 24, 2013 at 03:06 PM
I would like to nominate Elise Colson as a "Woman who makes Palm Desert". In her career, she has promoted Palm Desert and this Valley in several capacities through the Convention and Visitors Bureau, several Convention size hotels, and the Palm Springs Convention Center. She currently is managing special events at Sunnylands, hosting notable worldwide visitors with social, educational and economic causes. In her personal life, she is a superb mother and wife, active in her children's's schools, and raising two bright and wonderful daughters. She has also spearheaded teams for the MS Walk for the Cure for several years. In addition to her career and personal accomplishments, Elise is simply an exceptional human being, always looking at the positives in people and situations, and anyone that knows her would wholeheartedly agree that they are a better person by knowing her. (submitted by Joanne Ohanesian)
Leo Sullivan February 24, 2013 at 04:29 PM
At the top of the list should be our current Mayor, Jan Harnik, who has been campaigning for civility on the City Council and is succeeding. After that would be Jean Benson, City Council member who has worked tirelessly for the growth and success of the City.
Pat February 24, 2013 at 06:37 PM
Michele DeMille, who became an accomplished accounting professional without a college degree, helped her husband build his successful design, tile and marble business, survived breast cancer, went back to school to get her degree,graduating with honors and chosen to speak at the ceremony. She volunteers for the Y, is involved in community events and gives her all to help so many of us with her expertise and love.
Lolly February 24, 2013 at 06:57 PM
I agree...Jan Harnik has paid her dues and is out there making sure our community will be the best of the best.
Nicky Vallee February 24, 2013 at 11:11 PM
I would like to nominate Cheri Michel. In addition to being a yoga instructor at Go with the Flow Yoga in Palm Desert, Cheri is also a self defense instructor who uses her very personal, life altering story of survival to empower and teach men, women, and children how to protect themselves. Cheri is also a third-degree blackbelt, award-winning fitness competitor, CPR instructor, and television personality. She is a compassionate, kind, intelligent person who makes Palm Desert and our Valley a better, safer place to live.
Renee Schiavone (Editor) February 25, 2013 at 08:11 PM
Thanks for telling us about all these wonderful women in the community... their stories certainly are inspiring!


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