Petite and Female? Height’s No Obstacle to Success

According to Truly, one-fourth of adult U.S. women are under 5’3″.

These women run businesses, raise families, and speak up for their beliefs, just like their taller sisters do. So if you ever feel that small stature is a deficit, think about petite powerhouses like these:

Small Women with Big Impacts

  • Rosa Parks, civil rights leader (5’3″)
  • Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Supreme Court Justice (5′ 1/2″)
  • Golda Meir, former Prime Minister of Israel
  • Coco Chanel, fashion magnate
  • “Judge Judy” Scheindlin, TV jurist (5’1″)
  • “Dr. Ruth” Westheimer, sex educator (4’7″)
  • Sarah Michelle Gellar, “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” (5’3″)
  • Kelly Clarkson, singer (5’3″)
  • Dolly Parton, country music diva (5’0″)
  • Janeane Garofalo, comedienne (5’1″)
  • Rachael Ray, food network star (5’3″)
  • Bernadette Peters, Broadway legend (5’3″)
  • Celia Cruz, Latin music icon (pictured above singing Zunzun with Big Bird)
  • Jennifer Gelfand, ballerina (“I try to dance big”)

Who would you add to this list??

Can Small Women Succeed in Business?

It’s more difficult to find stats on successful businesswomen and entrepreneurs — and that’s a good thing, because it means that the media is talking about the size of their profit margins, not their clothes!

But a look at Forbes’s The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women  2012 suggests that many female magnates are also of average or below-average height.

Height is no barrier to making yourself heard, or to reaching your goals in life.

So short women, power up!

Edith Gordon and Laura Tancer, my favorite diminutive dynamos


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  • Shelly S. Cantrell


  • Jezra Kaye

    Shelly, I missed noticing your comment when you wrote it. Thanks so much for reading the post, and affirming the power of small women!