TRAILBLAZER THURSDAY: Tammy Duckworth
Updated: Sep 20, 2018
by Amelia Oates
Tammy Duckworth brings a whole new meaning and standard to the term “Supermom.”
Illinois State Senator Tammy Duckworth took office in 2017, after two terms representing the 8th District of Illinois from 2013-2017. Duckworth, born in Bangkok, Thailand, is the first Asian-American woman to be elected to Congress in Illinois. She is also the first member of Congress that was born in Thailand.
Public office is not the only way Duckworth has served her country, she is also a veteran, serving in the Iraq War as a U.S. Army Helicopter pilot. In 2004 when a rocket-propelled grenade shot down her helicopter, she lost both of her legs, and partial use of her right arm, but she persevered. When many people would have given up and left the Army behind them, she continued to serve as a lieutenant colonel in the Illinois Army National Guard with a medical waiver.
Duckworth is the first disabled woman to win an election from any state, and she is the first female double amputee in the Senate. She has used her time in the office to oversee the creation of one of America’s first 24/7 veteran crisis hotlines, and passed legislation to help employ veterans and reduce veteran suicide after leaving the army.
Tammy Duckworth can be much more than just a badass with all of these accomplishments, but supermom is another term that most certainly fits.
Duckworth became a supermom in 2014 when she gave birth to her daughter, Abigail, and became the first U.S. senator to give birth, while in office. She has since given birth to her second daughter Maile, who was born this year. The birth of her two daughters led to law changes, allowing for a Senator to breastfeed a child under one year old on the Senate floor during votes. There is an iconic picture of Duckworth going to the Capitol to vote in her wheelchair with Maile in her lap. She had taken a break from her maternity leave to vote on the Senate floor. I don’t think it can get much more badass than that!
The list of the Duckworth’s truly inspiring achievements can go on and on, and it is amazing how she has done so much when she started with so little in Thailand where she was nearly homeless.
There is a special place for supermoms in the heart of KSA as our fearless leader is a supermom herself. Being able to balance home and work life is a struggle women everywhere tackle every day, and they do not get nearly the recognition they deserve.
We hope Tammy Duckworth continues to break barriers and be a true trailblazer to pave the way for other great business women to follow in her path. She shows us there is no obstacle too high to overcome and we look up to her for her bravery and resilience.