"Women of Iceland: Daughters of Fire & Ice"
A book of intimate photography and interviews revealing the power, courage, and vulnerability of Women of Iceland pioneers from the Viking era to a new tomorrow.
Iceland was ranked #1 in the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index for the tenth year in a row...What is the secret to Iceland’s success? What can the world learn from the Women of Iceland?
Featured photo: Heiða Guðný Ásgeirsdóttir,
first Icelandic woman sheep shearer; environmentalist, model; inside her barn feeding sheep
Sigríður Björk Guðjónsdóttir, first woman police Chief of Reykjavík
The first Woman of Iceland of course is nature, Gullfoss Waterfall
Daughters of Fire & Ice asks us to explore our edges anew through questions of truth, “What does courageous vulnerability mean to you?”
Katrín Olga Jóhannesdóttir, first woman Chair of the Board in 99 years, Icelandic Chamber of Commerce.
Vigdís Finnbogadóttir, first democratically elected woman President in the world
Melting Icelandic glacier ice on Diamond Beach
Hrund Gunnsteinsdóttir, pioneering filmmaker and cultural entrepreneur; Writer and Co-director
of the documentary film InnSaei; Chair of the Technology Development Fund of Iceland
Eliza Reid, First Lady of Iceland and UN Goodwill Ambassador for Sustainable Tourism and the SDGs
Ásthildur Sturludóttir, first woman Mayor in the West Fjords, and current Mayor of Akureyri
Katrín Pétursdóttir, first woman to own and serve as CEO of the largest fish oil company in the world, Lýsi,
Halla Tómasdóttir, first woman to integrate feminine values into Icelandic finance; international keynote speaker, CEO of "The B Team"
Ragnheiður Jóna Jónsdóttir,
Owner and Manager of Hannesarsholt, where Hannes Hafstein, Iceland’s first prime minister, led the charge in getting Icelandic women the right to vote, in 1911
Rósbjörg Jónsdóttir, Founder & Manager of Cognito Consulting. first woman to bring the Social Progress Index to Iceland; co-creator of Iceland's first tourism cluster; Chair of the Board of the Icelandic Environmental Association"
Þórhildur Þorleifsdóttir, pioneering and maverick leader who broke numerous glass ceilings in art, opera, theater, art, film and television
Rannveig Grétarsdóttir, first woman owner and CEO of Iceland's largest and most sustainable whale watching company
Ingibjörg Sólrún Gísladóttir; former Mayor of Reykjavík,
Co-founder of the Women's List, and is serving currently under the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) as the first woman Director of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights
Eirún Sigurðardóttir and Jóni Jónsdóttir, feminist
mavericks in performance theater, changing gender roles through their "Icelandic Love Corporation". Trying here to catch a glance of the future.
Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir, first woman Minister of the Interior; former Mayor of Reykjavík, Co-founder and Chair of the Executive Board of Women Political Leaders, Global Forum
first woman President/Rector of the University of Iceland
Svanhildur Konráðsdóttir, first woman Director of Harpa, Iceland's crown jewel cultural and musical center
Permanent Secretary, Prime Minister’s office
Inga Dóra Sigfúsdóttir, first Icelandic woman pioneer in addictions education; Professor Department of Psychology and Scientific Director Icelandic Centre for Social Research and Analysis Reykjavík University
Kristín Ástgeirsdóttir, first woman Chair of the Center for Gender Equality
Margrét Lára Viðarsdóttir,
former Team Captain of the Icelandic
Women’s National Football Team
Margrét Pála Ólafsdóttir, pioneering pedagogue and girls empowerment educator, and Author, Hjallastefnan
Eva María Þórarinsdóttir Lange, CEO and Co-founder Pink Iceland and first woman President of Reykjavík Pride
Agnes M. Sigurðardóttir, first woman Bishop of the National Church of Iceland in almost 1,000 years
Friðbjörg Matthíasdóttir, first woman Standing in Mayor of Vesturbyggð, Westfjords
Erla Björg Guðrúnardóttir, founder and CEO of Marz Seafood, a pioneer in Icelandic fish brokering and the first with an all women's team
Þóra Steingrímsdóttir, first woman Head and Professor
of the University Dept. of Obstetrics and Gynecology,
Landspítali University Hospital, Reykjavík
Heiða Guðný Ásgeirsdóttir, first Icelandic woman sheep shearer; environmentalist, model; inside her barn feeding sheep
Rannveig Rist, first woman Managing Director of Rio Tinto Aluminum, Iceland
Claudie Ashonie Wilson, first woman human rights attorney and head of Icelandic Immigrant Rights Association. Jamaican Immigrant.
Guðrún Hallgrímsdóttir, Co-founder of the
Red Stockings movement
Auður Eir Vilhjálmsdóttir, first woman priest in Iceland
Unnur Anna Valdimarsdóttir, global pioneer in proving the effects of trauma in women's health; Professor of Epidemiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Iceland
Birna Einarsdóttir, first woman CEO of Íslandsbanki
Elliðaey and Snæfellsnes
Hrefna Rósa Sætran, first Icelandic woman to compete in the International Culinary Competition, and pioneering woman chef and restauranteur
Hallbera Guðný Gísladóttir, top Icelandic leader in the Icelandic Women’s Soccer Team; TV sports anchor
Anna Kristín Kristjánsdóttir,
first publicly transgender
woman in Iceland
Vilborg Davíðsdóttir, leading ethnologist and first Icelandic woman to author Icelandic Sagas written with a
Valgerður Hrund Skúladóttir, first Icelandic woman entrepreneur in large technology infrastructure, CEO of Sensa
Sólveig Eiríksdóttir, first woman raw food chef and food designer
Þuríður Harpa Sigurðardóttir, first woman Director of the Organisation of Disabled Iceland, board member of the European Disability Forum
Rosmarie Brynhildur Thorleifsdóttir,
first woman pioneer in Icelandic Horsemanship
Katrín Jakobsdóttir, former Minister of Education, Science, and Culture; first woman Chair of the Left-Green Movement. Current Prime Minister of Iceland
Kristín Aðalbjörg Árnadóttir, first Icelandic Ambassador of Gender Equality
Ragnhildur Jónsdóttir, pioneering expert in mythology, and in Icelandic elves, trolls and hidden beings; Author; Founder, Elf Garden
Margrét Hallgrímsdóttir, first woman Director General of the National Museum of Iceland
Alma Dagbjört Möller, first woman Director of National Health, Iceland; first woman helicopter Field doctor, Icelandic Coast Guard
Árný Erla Sveinbjörnsdóttir, first woman pioneer in Icelandic glaciology;
Research Scientist, University of Iceland
Guðrún Þorgerður Larsen,
first woman pioneer in Icelandic volcanology;
Professor Emeritus, University of Iceland
Kristjana Björk Barðdal, leading next generation feminist,
Co-Founder of Ada, Women in Tech at the University of Iceland; former Chair of the Youth Association of UN Women, Iceland
Globally, in 2018 the world went backwards in gender equity by seven years.
It will now take 108 years to reach parity.
We need a shift in collective consciousness. This begins with seeing and embracing ourselves and the gifts only we are able to offer. “What does it mean to be a woman in your own power?”
It is time we looked at ourselves and the world differently. Being authentic in our own “courageous vulnerability” evolves leadership to embrace the feminine power essential for a balanced future.
Kata’s advice: “If you can’t beat ‘em, eat ‘em!” Reminding us all that fun is as vital to the recipe for success as intuition and mama’s lessons on life - topped of course with a teaspoon of cod liver oil every day.
“My SDG is #17, Partnership for the Goals. My grandmother’s gold thimble symbolizes this, as she wove together every bit of old clothing and cloth to make a quilt for us all. And she reminded us that women who change the way things were, also need some spirit!”
If Ghandi is right, and “We must be the change we want to see in the world”, our soul task becomes to see clearly who we really are, and what is the change that we seek.
featured here as one of the Women of Iceland SDG Heroes, holding her SDG Object a dried Cod fish head and childhood book of Icelandic fish from her father, representing SDG #14: "Life Below Water"
Guðrún Pétursdóttir SDG Heroes photo, first woman Director of the Institute for Sustainability Studies, University of Iceland, wearing her SDG goal: her grandmother's thimble, SDG #17, "Partnerships for the Goals".
Ragna Árnadóttir, SDG Heroes photo, first Icelandic woman Minister of Justice following 2008 crash, and first woman deputy CEO of Landsvirkjun national power company of Iceland, holding her SDG object: a Star Wars light saber, SDG #7, "Affordable and Clean Energy”
UN GLOBAL GOALS AND
“SDG HEROES PHOTOS”
The Women of Iceland Project celebrates leading Icelanders as SDG Heroes, each holding a chosen object of personal significance symbolizing the one Global Goal that is the most important to them.
The SDGs and the SDG Heroes are the
Women of Iceland’s red thread.
With 193 country signatories to the SDGs, Iceland can be a lighthouse for the collective rise of women and a sustainable future for all.
Anna Hulda Ólafsdóttir,
Icelandic Champion in Olympic Weightlifting,
Assistant Professor, System Dynamics Center,
University of Iceland
Real-Leaders Magazine, Winter 2018
"The Nordic country has blazed the trail in gender equality and now, from infancy to maternity, women and girls enjoy a progressive lifestyle. But how did they achieve it?"
- The Guardian, October, 2016 - "Why Iceland is the Best Place to Be a Woman"
Sigríður Ásdís Snævarr, SDG Heroes Photo, first woman Icelandic Ambassador, holding her SDG object:
Icelandic SDGs, SDG #17: "Partnerships fo the Goals"
Inga Björk Bjarnadóttir SDG Heroes photo, pioneering disability activist, Chair of the Committee of the Social Democratic Alliance of Iceland, holding her SDG object: a lipstick,
SDG #10, "Reduced Inequalities"
Steinunn Sigurðardóttir SDG Heroes Photo, maverick visual artist and fashion designer,
holding her SDG object: her book of handcraft from elementary school, representing
SDG #10: "Reduced Inequalities".
24 October, 1975, Women of Iceland "Took the Day Off," bringing the country to a standstill and changing history through the collective power of women united.
By January, 2030: could Iceland change history again, becoming the first country in the world to achieve full
Daughters of Fire & Ice invites you on a journey of discovery and new possibility…
… Continue below for select photographs and PDF information. Scroll down to sign up for updates and special invitations to the 2019 launch of Daughters of Fire & Ice.