I grew up idolizing Jane Goodall and Cyndi Lauper – spirited women who stepped outside of the standard role and had a darn good time with it. And while, I still value those 2 dynamic women (both are still doing incredibly cool things), I find that my heroes are the women in my life who wake up every day and do good stuff in the world.

It’s people like Marika Holmgren, who founded Organic Events and is rocking the Bay Area with smartly planned, sustainably created, awesomely fun non-profit events. And Laurin Asdal, who is kicking butt as Mother Jones’ Director of Development while raising one of the most beautiful, intelligent, free-spirited little girls the world will know. And Ann Friedman, who is wicked smart and incredibly talented, and can knock the socks off any political writer. And Diane Taylor, who raised an incredible son (!) and daughter, and selflessly volunteers her time and energy at George Mark Children’s House. And Jade Frank, who is so very genuinely kind and caring in the world, and has built this incredible world of PulseWire that we all love. And my sister, who wakes up every day grateful that she kicked cancer and can now jump, swim, laugh and surf with the best of them. And Morgan Rissel, who is so wonderfully talented and strong, and always finds the time to do good things for the people and causes she cares for. And my Aunty Mary, who charges forward in a science community dominated by naysayers and men, and is building an incredibly wonderful life for her son. And my friend Briana, who takes such amazingly good care of her friends and family and shares so, so much love with the world. And, of course, my mama, who has given me a great life and taught me to be bold and fearless and creative in everything that I do.

So, this International Women’s Day, I’d like to honor them – and many, many more of the incredible women I love.

And I honor you, dear PulseWire reader, for waking up every day and doing good stuff in the world. We are making it happen!

Take action! This post was submitted in response to International Women's Day 2011: A Call for Heroes.