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Katie Groke Ellis Headshot

Year of the Woman?

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Is it too soon to say that 2012 is the NEW Year of the Woman? This election cycle will go down in the history books as monumental for women. Women turned out in higher numbers to vote, to run and to WIN!

Here are a few highlights:

- 20 female senators will serve in the 113th Congress, the largest number in U.S. history; before there were only 17.

- Tammy Baldwin became the first openly gay person and the first woman elected to the U.S. Senate from Wisconsin.

- Elizabeth Warren became the first female senator elected to represent Massachusetts.

- In New Hampshire, it will be the first time in history a state will have an entirely female congressional delegation and a female governor.

- Tulsi Gabbard , representative-elect from Hawaii, will be the first Hindu in Congress. Also in Hawaii Mazie Hirono became the first female senator elected from Hawaii and the first Buddhist and Asian American woman to be elected to the Senate.

- Tammy Duckworth from Illinois is the first disabled female veteran to be elected to Congress.

- Two women are elected from Indiana; the first time two women have served at the same time, representative-elect Susan Brooks and representative-elect Jackie Walorski.

- In total, at least 77 women will serve in the House, a record high up from the current record high of 73.

These are such large accomplishments and women everywhere from either party should be proud that there are women out there stepping up to the plate and running for office. The more women elected, the better they are represented. Women are ready to make positive changes for this country and bridge the gap between parties and work together to create policies that will improve the lives of people everywhere.

Little girls everywhere can start recognizing that more and more elected officials look like them and they now have more women to look up to and aspire to be. I imagine a little girl somewhere last night watching the election results with her parents thinking maybe one day she will be a senator or representative or even president!

Now is the time to celebrate these great accomplishments and start looking towards 2016 -- it is time for the United States to elect their first female president!