Most, if not all, have heard the saying, ‘Behind every successful man, is a woman.’ This famous saying certainly holds true when looking at BBC Radio 4 Women’s Hour ‘power list’. Their annual list of most influential women aims at identifying women making exceptional impact on society through their dynamic personality. Featuring women in areas range from politics to journalism to fashion and entertainment, this list of top ten influencers is full of surprises. Surprises include, but is not limited to, ‘the most dangerous woman in Britain’, high profile transgender woman, and first female editor of The Guardian in their 194-year history.

Every woman influences her surroundings in one way or another. However, there are few selective women that extend their limits to a higher degree, becoming global icons. Here is the full inspirational BBC Radio 4 Women’s Hour ‘power list’:

10. Sara Khan


The co-founder of Inspire is influencing people worldwide with her anti-terrorism work in schools and communities. Her work is changing and persuading mindsets to stand against extremist ideologies.

While these women certainly have a significant impact on the way people think and live, we would like to know who has influenced and inspired you most. Let us know in the Comment section below.

9. Zanny Minton Beddoes


She is editor-in-chief of The Economist, and one widely read economic analysts. This simply puts Zanny in a position where she has the capabilities to influence politicians, policy makers, and many others on financial matters.

8. Karen Blackett


Gemma Cairney from the selection panel, said that they had discussed the undeniable influence of advertising has on everyday lives, and wanted to find a woman who operates at the media core. For them no one fit better than Karen in this category. CEO of MediaCom, Blackett is a powerhouse that influences people in how they spend their money.

7. Caitlyn Jenner


Her name on the list may surprise many people, but according to a selection panel, her immense courage in openly coming forward to the world as a transgender that trumped all others. Caitlyn, formerly known as Bruce Jenner was a 1976 Summer Olympics gold medalist. After a successful marriage of 23 years, Jenner came forward as a transgender woman.

6. Sia Furler


Penned multiple hit numbers for singers like Rihanna, Madonna, Katy Perry and Beyoncé, Sia Furler’s new solo album “1000 Forms of Fear” is already a hit in various parts worldwide. She has remarkably contributed to music through her singing and song writing skill sets.

5. Camilla Cavendish


According to Sarah Vine, Camilla, the newly appointed head of the Policy Unit at No 10 will be responsible for shaping next five years of government. Camilla’s ideas and opinions will influence government departments and UK as a whole. The former McKinsey consultant is a clear, analytical thinker.

4. Katharine Viner


She became the first female editor-in-chief of The Guardian in its 194-years history. The appointment was made via staff ballot in March, 2015. Katharine joined their media house in 1997 and appointed deputy editor in 2008. She launched the award-winning Guardian Australia in 2013 with a vision to establish The Guardian on a global scale.

3. Angelina Jolie


Angelina Jolie became third most influential women worldwide. Although an A-list celebrity, it’s not because of her acting career or elite fashion sense, but rather, the diva gained her position for her humanitarian efforts and openness about her cancer preventive treatments. The Oscar-winning actor and human rights ambassador openly spoke about her genetic predisposition to breast and ovarian cancers. She also disclosed about her preventive double mastectomy, after which National Health Service referrals for genetic testing for breast cancer doubled.

Jolie has also influenced government policy in different parts of the world to recognize crime against women.

2. Anna Wintour


The US Vogue editor-in-chief is second on the list because of her fabulous fashion influence on people worldwide. Anna has a “quiet, dignified presence” in the fashion industry “whose word is almost law” for what to wear, how to look, and who to celebrate with in fashion.

1. Nicola Sturgeon


Leader of SNP and once dubbed ‘the most dangerous woman in Britain’, Nicola Sturgeon has transcended some powerful political names to become the most influential woman of the year. She gained the title following her party’s extraordinary performance in recent Westminster elections. According to Emma Barnett, chairperson of the selection panel, SNP leader has high influence over public because of UK and the European Union. “She is the woman of the moment in terms of influence and hard power.”

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