FORBES has released this year’s list detailing Spain’s most influential women including Queen Letizia, Spain’s Women’s Football team and singer Rosalia.
The magazine published the second edition of the Spanish list on Wednesday, designed to ‘celebrate women’s success and educate future generations’. But do you know all of the inspirational Spanish women most featured?
Queen Letizia of Spain
A Journalist and divorcee, Letizia Ortiz Rocasolano has broken royal taboos as queen of Spain. Before her coronation she was even awarded the Madrid Press Association’s Larra Prize as the year’s most outstanding journalist under 30. As Queen she advocates for youth education, scientific research and awareness of rare diseases.
Princess Leonor of Asturias
Heir to the Spanish throne, the 17-year-old has been making headlines recently whilst completing the military training. Described as ‘loyal’ by Forbes, the princess was praised for her support of the Spanish women’s side at the recent World Cup final. Leonor has studied in the UK, attending prestigious private school UWC Atlantic College in Wales.
The Spanish Women’s Football team
Although celebrating the whole team, Forbes highlighted the Balon d’Or winner Ataina Bonmati and teammate Salma Parallelo, who was crowned the best player of the tournament. The team, who beat the English side 1-0 also received the Spanish Royal Award for Sporting Merit.
Infusing flamenco and pop, Rosalia has conquered the charts at home and abroad, becoming the first Spanish woman to appear on the cover of Rolling Stone USA this year. Her recent Motomami tour has broken records, covering 21 countries and 2 million attendees. The Barcelona native’s logo also appeared on her home team’s kit during the hotly contested El Clásico football match between Madrid and Barcelona.
In 2013, Basque chef Elena Arzak was awarded the ‘best chef in the world’. Now, just a decade later, the culinary royalty is up for the honour again. Her three-Michelian-starred restaurants are known for their relaxed vibe where local families have dined for generations. She comes from a Spanish culinary dynasty, following in the footsteps of three generations of chefs. Her dishes are known for preserving Basque traditions whilst adding flavours inspired by cultures worldwide.
Elvira Dyangani Ose
Director of Barcelona modern art museum, the MACBA, the art historian proudly oversees a 90% female workforce. In 2022, the Turner Prize judge was included in the ArtReview’s Power 100 list for her influence in the art world.
The new President of the Spanish Congress, Francina Armengol is known for her tact in reaching agreements and her support for using regional languages in government. In 2015, she became the first female leader of the Balearic Islands whilst raising two children as a single mother.
The Executive President of 50&50 Gender Leadership, Gloria Lomana is a pioneer in female leadership and communications. In 2019, she founded a communications consultancy focussed on equality and female leadership. She also pioneers leadership programmes for young women aged 15-18 and shares her insights in the national media.
Head of Meta for Spain and Portugal, Irene Cano is at the forefront of world changing technology. Under her leadership, Spain will become Europe’s first ‘metacountry’, a multinational centre for innovation and planning of the metaverse.
In March this year, actress Ana Obregon became the centre of a national controversy when she decided to become a mother using her dead son’s sperm at almost 70-years-old. The story shocked Spaniards and even landed in the national congress. Following the controversy, Ana published a book her son had started writing before his death in 2020.‘The Boy with the Shrews’ went on to become a best seller and Ana a successful influencer.
Sara García Alonso
Last year, the molecular biologist became the first Spanish woman to be selected for the European Space Agency reserve. Not only the first Spanish female astronaut, the scientist is also part of the National Cancer Research Centre and leads projects to find new drugs to fight lung and pancreatic cancer.