Time's 100 Most Influential People list for 2017 is out, and this year's honorees are as fascinating as they are divided. From Jared Kushner to Donald Glover to Sandra Day O'Connor and everyone in between, this year's list contains lots of surprises. But one group of "influencers" didn't surprise us in the least. The Women's March organizers made Time's 100 Most Influential People list, and given how massively successful and important the Women's March was, I doubt anyone is uncertain as to why they did.
Not only did Tamika Mallory, Bob Bland, Carmen Perez, and Linda Sarsour make this year's contrast-filled list, but their entry was written by none other than Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, the woman who filled Hillary Clinton's New York Senate seat and is herself an elected official aligned with the resistance to President Donald Trump.
In her write-up of these four incredible people, Gillibrand spared no pretense on how she feels about the march or its impact:
The Women’s March was the most inspiring and transformational moment I’ve ever witnessed in politics. It was a joyful day of clarity and a lightning bolt of awakening for so many women and men who demanded to be heard.
Of the influential members of this year's Time 100, few have had as visible an impact as Sarsour, Mallory, Bland, and Perez. They were brought on to organize the march amid claims that its leadership should be less white and more inclusive, and they rose to the occasion in such spectacular fashion.
Under their leadership, the networks of Women's Marches around the country became one of the largest mass protests in American history. The D.C. march alone more than surpassed the attendance at President Trump's inauguration the day prior, and the message all those women and their allies sent was clear: Women know what's at stake during a Trump presidency, and they'll be watching.
After the Women's March, these organizers persisted. They worked on keeping up the massive momentum of the resistance they helped build. On International Women's Day, the four women were arrested protesting outside of Trump hotel in Manhattan while participating in the "Day Without Women" strike. In April, they worked to organize the WomenForSyria Day of Action following news of chemical attacks in the war-torn country.
Amid concerns of the resistance losing steam in the face of the daily controversies of the Trump presidency, these four women have continued to champion the rights of those hurt by this administration. If there's anyone who deserves to be on the Time 100, it's them.