Nobel Prize Winners

In a world that continues to work towards gender equality, seeing a woman be honored with a Nobel Prize is a source of inspiration providing role models for women and girls to identify with.


Between 1901-2018 52 women have won the Nobel Prize (although only 51 different women as Marie Curie won twice).

Marie Skłodowska Curie

Maria Skłodowska-Curie 1903.jpg By Unknown - [1], Public Domain, Link

Marie Sklodowska Curie was the first woman to win the Nobel Prize in Physics and Chemistry and the first person ever to win a Nobel Prize twice. Curie and her husband discovered polonium and radium. After her husband passed, she further developed X-rays. She was born in 1867 and passed away in 1934.

Nadia Murad

Nadia Murad in Washington - 2018 (42733243785) (cropped).jpg
By U.S. Department of State from United States -, Public Domain, Link

Nadia Murad is an Isis human trafficking survivor. Her town had been attacked and she had lost her 6 brothers and mother. At night people came to buy these women and girls and abused and assaulted them. She got away and now is standing up for young girls and woman who are currently or had been tortured in the way she had. She was given the Nobel Peace Prize for Peace.

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf 2005.jpg
By Uwe.Kerkow - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is Africa’s first woman elected president. She is the president of Liberia, Africa. She has promoted peace, women’s rights, and much more. Before Sirleaf had become president of Liberia, it was being torn apart by civil wars, drugs, violence, and huge debts. She has turned Liberia around now by lowering the violence, improved women’s rights, and cleared a lot of the debts the country had.

Donna Strickland

Donna Strickland EM1B5760 (46183560632).jpg
By Bengt Nyman from Vaxholm, Sweden - Donna Strickland EM1B5760, CC BY 2.0, Link

Donna Strickland is a Canadian physicist, best known for winning a Nobel Prize for Physics in 2018. She shared the prize with Arthur Ashkin and French physicist Gérard Mourou. All three of them were responsible for the ground-breaking invention of  “chirped pulse amplification (CPA), a method of making pulses of laser light of high power and short duration.” This innovation is used in many ways, including but not limited to cancer cures, cell phone screen manufacturing, laser eye surgery, and the study of new physics principles.

Mother Teresa

Mother Teresa 1.jpg
By Kingkongphoto & from Laurel Maryland, USA - Mother Teresa best © copyright 2010, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link

Mother Teresa had a huge impact on the world. She dedicated her life to helping others around her, mainly the poor. Many people’s prayers for someone who is sick or injured, have been said to of been heard by Mother Teresa and cured. She was born in Skopje, the current capital of the Republic of Macedonia. At a young age, even though she didn’t come from a wealthy family, her mother would always welcome people with open arms to dine with them. When these people would come over, her mother would tell her that it didn’t matter who they are, but that they were people and were equal.

Malala Yousafzai

Malala Yousafzai 2015.jpg
By DFID - UK Department for International Development - Malala Yousafzai: Education for girls, CC BY 2.0, Link

Malala Yousafzai was born July 12, 1997, Mingora, Swat valley, Pakistan. She began speaking out against the prevention of girls’ right to go to school at age 14. This policy was enforced by the Taliban Pakistan. At age 15, she survived an assassination attempt by the same group. Malala was awarded the Nobel Peace prize in 2014.

Tu Youyou

Tu Youyou 5012-1-2015.jpg
By Bengt Nyman - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Link

Tu You was awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine. She had discovered artemisinin and dihydroartemisinin, which treats malaria. Chinese medicine inspired Tu, and ended up leading her to find the treatment. This treatment has saved millions of lives. She was born in Ningbo, China on December 30, 1930.

The World Atlas published a list of names of women who have won Nobel Prizes:


Female Nobel Prize Winners: 1901 to 2018

Year Laureate Country Category
1903 Marie Skłodowska Curie (shared with Pierre Curie and Henri Becquerel) Poland and France Physics
1905 Bertha von Suttner Austria–Hungary Peace
1909 Selma Lagerlöf Sweden Literature
1911 Marie Skłodowska Curie Poland and France Chemistry
1926 Grazia Deledda Italy Literature
1928 Sigrid Undset Norway Literature
1931 Jane Addams (shared with Nicholas Murray Butler) United States Peace
1935 Irène Joliot-Curie (shared with Frédéric Joliot-Curie) France Chemistry
1938 Pearl S. Buck United States Literature
1945 Gabriela Mistral Chile Literature
1946 Emily Greene Balch (shared with John Raleigh Mott) United States Peace
1947 Gerty Theresa Cori (shared with Carl Ferdinand Cori and Bernardo Houssay) United States Physiology or Medicine
1963 Maria Goeppert-Mayer (shared with J. Hans D. Jensen and Eugene Wigner) United States Physics
1964 Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin United Kingdom Chemistry
1966 Nelly Sachs (shared with Samuel Agnon) Sweden and Germany Literature
1976 Betty Williams United Kingdom Peace
1976 Mairead Corrigan United Kingdom Peace
1977 Rosalyn Sussman Yalow (shared with Roger Guillemin and Andrew Schally) United States Physiology or Medicine
1979 Mother Teresa India and Yugoslavia Peace
1982 Alva Myrdal (shared with Alfonso García Robles) Sweden Peace
1983 Barbara McClintock United States Physiology or Medicine
1986 Rita Levi-Montalcini (shared with Stanley Cohen) Italy and United States Physiology or Medicine
1988 Gertrude B. Elion (shared with James W. Black and George H. Hitchings) United States Physiology or Medicine
1991 Nadine Gordimer South Africa Literature
1991 Aung San Suu Kyi Burma Peace
1992 Rigoberta Menchú Guatemala Peace
1993 Toni Morrison United States Literature
1995 Christiane Nüsslein-Volhard (shared with Edward B. Lewis and Eric F. Wieschaus) Germany Physiology or Medicine
1996 Wisława Szymborska Poland Literature
1997 Jody Williams (shared with the International Campaign to Ban Landmines) United States Peace
2003 Shirin Ebadi Iran Peace
2004 Elfriede Jelinek Austria Literature
2004 Wangari Maathai Kenya Peace
2004 Linda B. Buck (shared with Richard Axel) United States Physiology or Medicine
2007 Doris Lessing United Kingdom Literature
2008 Françoise Barré-Sinoussi (shared with Harald zur Hausen and Luc Montagnier) France Physiology or Medicine
2009 Elizabeth Blackburn (shared with Jack W. Szostak) Australia and United States Physiology or Medicine
2009 Carol W. Greider (shared with Jack W. Szostak) United States
2009 Ada E. Yonath (shared with Venkatraman Ramakrishnan and Thomas A. Steitz) Israel Chemistry
2009 Herta Müller Germany and Romania Literature
2009 Elinor Ostrom (shared with Oliver E. Williamson) United States Economics
2011 Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Liberia Peace
2011 Leymah Gbowee Liberia
2011 Tawakel Karman Yemen
2013 Alice Munro Canada Literature
2014 May-Britt Moser (shared with Edvard Moser and John O’Keefe) Norway Physiology or Medicine
2014 Malala Yousafzai (shared with Kailash Satyarthi) Pakistan Peace
2015 Tu Youyou (shared with William C. Campbell and Satoshi Ōmura) China Physiology or Medicine
2015 Svetlana Alexievich Belarus Literature
2018 Donna Strickland Canada Physics
2018 Nadia Murad Iraq Peace

For additional information about women who have won the Nobel Prize check out this site: