WASHINGTON — The first female principal chief of the Cherokee Nation, a leader in New Mexico’s suffrage movement and the first Chinese American film star in Hollywood were chosen to round out the first year of the American Women Quarters Program, the U.S. Mint announced.
Wilma Mankiller, Adelina Otero-Warren and Anna May Wong will be featured on the reverse of the 2022 quarters, the Mint announced in a news release. George Washington will remain on the obverse of the coin, as he has since 1932.
“Courageous women have made countless contributions throughout our great Nation’s history,” Mint Director David J. Ryder said in a statement. “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.”
The quarters program will run through 2025 and will have up to five designs, according to CNN.
Mankiller was elected as the principal chief of the Cherokee Nation in July 1987 served in the post until 1995, according to Indian Country Today. She died on April 6, 2010.
“We thank the U.S. Mint for recognizing Wilma and the other recipients for such an honor. Wilma was a humble, spiritual great leader, whose leadership was not only for Cherokee people but for all women and races,” Mankiller’s husband, Charlie Soap, told Indian Country Today. “The real value of this coin is the inspiration it brings to Indian people and women everywhere. Wilma did a simple thing as a tribal leader: she reminded our people of our greatness and our gift to help one another.”
Otero-Warren, who died in 1965, was the first Hispanic woman to run for U.S. Congress and was the first female superintendent of public schools in Santa Fe, New Mexico, according to the National Women’s History Museum. She assumed that position in 1917 and remained her role until 1929. Otero-Warren ran for Congress as a Republican in 1922 but lost the general election by less than 10,000 votes, the website reported.
Wong appeared in more than 60 films during her career and starred in silent films, television and on stage, according to the National Women’s History Museum. She also landed a role on one of the first movies made in Technicolor, the website reported. Wong’s first breakthrough film came in 1924, when she starred as a Mongol slave in “The Thief of Baghdad,” according to IMDb.com. Her signature role was in the 1932 film, “Shanghai Express,” when she played a supporting role to Marlene Dietrich.
Wong died in 1961.
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