Women breaking the stereotypes in male-dominated fields

Source The Ghana Report

Women, breaking the barrier and stereotypical standards in male-dominated circles not only calls for celebration but also creates the awareness that women are courageous and capable of fitting every sector.

The annual celebration of International Women’s Day globally on March 8, seeks to celebrate the achievements of women and marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity.

Moreover, the day reminds women of the need not to belittle themselves, but rather to think about how they can contribute immensely to every sector for the betterment of their nation.

In this article, The Ghana Report seeks to celebrate women who have contributed tremendously to the betterment of Ghana with others inspiring and creating hope for women in society.

  • Madam Theodosia Salome Okoh

Madam Theodosia Salome Okoh is a distinguished Ghanaian woman whose name will never be erased due to the enormous contributions she made toward  Ghana’s independence.

She designed the Ghana National Flag in 1957, to replace the British flag after the nation gained independence.

The flag she designed for Ghana consists of the colours red, gold, and green in horizontal stripes with a black star in the centre of the gold stripe.

The colour Red represents the blood of those who died in the country’s struggle for independence. The Gold represents the mineral wealth of the country. Green symbolizes the country’s rich forests while the Black Star stands for African Freedom.

Moreover, Theodosia Salome Okoh was appointed as the first female chairman of the Ghana Hockey Association and later President of the Ghana Hockey Federation for more than 20 years by Ghana’s first President Dr. Kwame Nkrumah.

During her tenure, Ghana first qualified for both the Hockey World Cup and the Olympic Games in the 1960s.

There are other remarkable things Madam Theodosia did for Mother Ghana as a woman and Ghanaians always remember her for her enormous contribution to the nation.

Madam Theodosia Salome Okoh, born on 13 June 1922 sadly passed away on April 19, 2015, at age 95.

  • Her Ladyship Georgina Theodora Wood

Her Ladyship Georgina Theodora Wood is the first female to occupy the Chief Justice position in Ghana. She served as the CJ of Ghana from 2007-2017.

Her excellent and remarkable leadership role during her tenure paved the way for other women like her Ladyship Sophia Akuffo, and the current CJ her Ladyship Gertrude Torkonoo to be entrusted with the same position.

Georgina Wood was sworn into office by then-President John Agyekum Kufuor in June 2007 and became the 13th Chief Justice of Ghana.

She had worked in the judicial service for 35 years. She received a Bachelor of Law (LLB) from the University of Ghana in 1970 and a barrister-at-law (BL) certification in 1972 from the Ghana School of Law.

She received training from the Ghana Police Service, allowing her to work as a deputy superintendent of police. After being called to the Ghana Bar and serving as a police prosecutor, she joined the judicial service as a magistrate in 1974.

From this position, she rose through the ranks of the lower courts. She served on the Supreme Court of the Gambia between 2003 and 2007. In 2002, President Kufuor nominated her as a candidate for Chief Justice, but she declined for reasons not openly stated.

In 2007, when he again nominated her, she accepted the nomination and received an overwhelmingly positive confirmation by the 26-member vetting committee in the Parliament of Ghana.

She swore in four Ghanaian presidents within the 10 years she held the position.

Her tenure as Chief Justice ended when she retired in June 2017, creating room for retired Chief Justice Sophia Akuffo.

She is still alive and inspiring women to break barriers to reach their aspirations.

  • Rosemond Asiama Nkansah

Rosemond Asiama Nkansah affectionately called Policewoman One (PW/1) was among the twelve women enlisted into the Gold Coast Police Force on September 1, 1952, as the leader at the age of 22.

Being the first female Police Officer and the remarkable role she played during her tenure ended the discrimination of women by way of recruitment into the police service to serve their country as police officers.

She is always remembered for being a courageous, resilient, and bold woman who rose above the expectations of society to make history.

Her contribution to Mother Ghana after independence has been incredible and continues to inspire other women.

She died on February 20, 2021, at age 91.


  • Elizabeth Mills-Robertson

History was made in 2009 following the appointment of Elizabeth Mills-Robertson as the acting Inspector General of Police(IGP) under the leadership of the late former President of Ghana John Atta Mills.

She was appointed to head the male-dominated position following the retirement of Mr. Patrick Kwarteng Acheampong on Thursday, 29 January 2009.

The majority of the police personnel after her appointment believed in her capability due to the number of years she has been in service.

She served as the IGP  from 28 January 2009 to 15 May 2009.

Although she did not serve for many years before her promotion to another field, the role she played during her tenure created the avenue for other women to be entrusted with male-dominated roles within the Ghana Police Service.

  • Annie Ruth Jiagge

Another brave and courageous woman in Ghana’s history who continues to inspire other women is former lawyer and Supreme Court Judge Annie Ruth Jiagge.

Annie Ruth Jiagge, born October 7, 1918, was also one of the notable women in Ghana’s history. She believed women must never look down on themselves but rather chase their dreams to be better people to transform their societies.

She was a great women’s activist. Annie Ruth Jiagge successfully graduated with her LLB in 1949 and was called to the bar in 1950.

Before her demise in 1996, she noted in one of her interviews on women empowerment that “We can do so much, but we must always do it as women, not as imitations of men. God has his purpose in making a woman as she is. Her nature is different. He gave us equal intelligence with men and in addition, gave us the womanly qualities that make it possible for us to do what we must do in our way”.

Many women continue to look to her exceptional role in the legal industry during her tenure.

  • Gloria Adwoa Amon Nikoi

Gloria Adwoa Amon Nikoi, née Addae, born June 6, 1927, was the first female Ghanaian diplomat to serve as the Foreign Minister in 1979 under the Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) government.

Serving in that male-dominated position, she received much support from both males and females. She was believed to be capable of handling such a position.

She died on November 10, 2010.

  • Melody Millicent Danquah

Melody Millicent Danquah born January 6, 1937, was the first Ghanaian female pilot and one of the earliest in Africa.

The profession is a male-dominated field therefore for a young female to adopt it as a career inspired other females to seek for such role. She died on 18 March 2016.

  • Professor Nana Aba Appiah Amfo
Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ghana, Professor Nana Aba Appiah Amfo

Professor Nana Aba Appiah Amfo is the first female Vice-Chancellor at the University of Ghana, Legon. Before her appointment to be Vice-Chancellor in October 2021, she served as Acting Vice-Chancellor from August 2021.

She served as Pro Vice-Chancellor with responsibility for Academic and Student Affairs (ASA) from November 2019. Professor Amfo was a founding Dean of the School of Languages (2014 – 2019). She previously served as the Head of the Department of Linguistics (2013 – 2014).

She has participated in the governance of the University of Ghana through her service on several statutory and ad hoc boards and committees. As Vice-Chancellor, Professor Amfo chairs several high-level statutory boards and committees of the University such as the Academic Board, Business and Executive Committee and Office of Research and Innovation Development (ORID) Advisory Board. She is an experienced academic and university administrator, with over twenty years of experience in the higher education sector.

Under her leadership, the University of Ghana was in 2023 adjudged the best university in Ghana and the second best in West Africa.

Moreover, the University also ranked 1006th position worldwide in the 2023 EduRank ratings.

Her ambition and leadership skills continue to inspire women in every sector to break barriers and aim to occupy male-dominated fields.

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