A Woman of Firsts
A Woman of Firsts. In 1977 Wangari Maathai, then studying Animal Science at the University of Nairobi, left her position as Kenya’s first woman professor to start the Green Belt Movement, an initiative that supported communities as much through reforestation as it did through nutrition, family planning, and women’s empowerment. By 1997 the movement had planted 15 million trees in over 30 countries across the world while providing income for thousands. Maathai only continued to break barriers when she became the first African woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize in 2004.