Stay up to date with the latest from MAKERS delivered straight to your inbox. Sign up for new stories from trailblazing women, a big dose of inspiration, and exclusive MAKERS content.

Newsletter Confirmation

Thank you for joining! Please check your inbox for our special welcome letter
with exclusive updates from MAKERS.


Fitting in with the Boys in the Pentagon

Fitting in with the Boys in the Pentagon

More From Condoleezza

In this video

Rice describes how she won over her male colleagues at the Pentagon

Condoleezza's Biography

Charity of Choice: Center for a New Generation
Sparking Her Interest: She got hooked on international relations after taking a college course with Professor Joseph Korbel, Madeleine Albright's father.
Inspiration from History: If she could meet anyone from history, she would sit down with Paul the Apostle or Martin Luther.
Advice for Public Speaking: (1) Know what you're talking about. (2) Do it a lot. 

Raised in Birmingham, Alabama Rice was on her way to becoming a concert pianist before turning to international relations and developing a career as a respected Soviet specialist.  In late 1989, President George H.W. Bush introduced Rice, then a National Security Council staffer, to Mikhail Gorbachev saying, “This is Condoleezza Rice.  She tells me everything I know about the Soviet Union.” Rice had just turned 35 years old and had by that time sat on the faculty of Stanford’s political science department for eight years. Of course, there was more to come. After returning to Stanford as Provost and accomplishing the monumental feat of restoring the University’s budget to health, she joined the campaign of George W. Bush in 2000.
Speaking before the GOP convention that year, she nodded to the odyssey of her life and career by noting that in the Jim Crow South of her youth, “Dixiecrats” had refused to register her father to vote.  After the election, President Bush appointed her National Security Advisor, the first woman to hold the position, and later, Secretary of State, making her the first African American woman to serve in the post.  Rice is back to teaching at her beloved Stanford while running an international consulting business.

Related Videos

Marlen Esparza
Marlen Esparza

Growing up in Houston, Texas, Marlen Esparza knew she wanted to be in the boxing ring. With the support of her father and coach - along with her hard work - Esparza has managed to ...

Val Demings
Val Demings
First Female Chief of Police, Orlando, Florida

Val Demings’ parents—her mother a maid and her father a janitor—never graduated from high school, but they instilled in their daughter the message that Demings co...

Sarah Weddington
Sarah Weddington
Attorney, Roe v. Wade

Sarah Weddington stepped into the national spotlight when she successfully argued the landmark Supreme Court case, Roe v. Wade, at the tender age of 26. The daughter of a Methodist...

Ellie Smeal
Ellie Smeal
Co-Founder & President, Feminist Majority

Eleanor (Ellie) Smeal, is Co-Founder and President of the Feminist Majority Foundation and former President of the National Organization for Women (NOW). Through both organizations...