The United States Mint has announced the first women to be honored during the first year of the American Women Quarters Program:
- Maya Angelou – celebrated author
- Sally Ride – first American woman in space
- Wilma Mankiller – the first female Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation and an activist for Native American and women’s rights;
- Adelina Otero-Warren – a leader in New Mexico’s suffrage movement and the first female superintendent of Santa Fe public schools; and
- Anna May Wong – the first Chinese American film star in Hollywood, achieving international success despite racism and discrimination.
Designs reflecting the achievements of Mankiller, Otero-Warren, and Wong, along with those of celebrated author Maya Angelou and trailblazing astronaut Dr. Sally Ride, will be featured on circulating and numismatic American Women Quarters Program coins beginning in 2022.
“Courageous women have made countless contributions throughout our great Nation’s history,” said Mint Director David J. Ryder. “The American Women Quarters Program is a unique opportunity to honor a broad and diverse group of women whose achievements, triumphs, and legacies reflect the strength and resilience of our Nation. We look forward to sharing their stories.”
Authorized by Public Law 116-330 – the Circulating Collectible Coin Redesign Act of 2020 – the American Women Quarters Program will feature coins with reverse (tails) designs emblematic of the accomplishments and contributions of prominent American women. Contributions may come from a wide spectrum of fields including, but not limited to, suffrage, civil rights, abolition, government, humanities, science, space, and the arts. The women honored will come from ethnically, racially, and geographically diverse backgrounds. As required by the Public Law, no living person will be featured in the coin designs, and thus all the women honored must be deceased. The Mint will issue up to five coins with different reverse designs annually over the four-year period from 2022 through 2025.
The obverse (heads) of coins in the American Women Quarters Program will continue to feature a likeness of George Washington designed in a manner to distinguish it from the current image.
As stipulated by the Public Law, the Secretary of the Treasury selects the women to be honored following consultation with the Smithsonian Institution’s American Women’s History Initiative, the National Women’s History Museum, and the Congressional Bipartisan Women’s Caucus.
If you would like to submit recommendations for women to be included in the program you can do so on the website of the National Women’s History Museum.
For more detailed information on the whole program the US Mint has created a page presenting the American Women Quarters Program.
The current Quarter program is America the Beautiful.
You can find all America the Beautiful Quarters in the Cosmos of Collectibles database.