If you look through your wallet, you will find white men staring back from all the greenbacks and likely all the coins.
A national campaign is working to change that by replacing Andrew Jackson on the $20 bill with an influential woman from history.
The campaign, Women on 20s, argues that it is time to elevate a woman to the same level of prominence as the men honored on paper currency.
“A woman’s place is on the money,” the campaign says.
Jackson, Women on $20s Executive Director Susan Ades Stone told The Washington Post, hated paper currency anyway – much favoring gold and silver.
“The guy would be rolling in his grave to know that every day the ATM spits out bills with his face on it,” she said.
Right now, the only woman on a currently circulating piece of U.S. currency is Sacagawea on the dollar coin. The U.S. Mint lists two other coins depicting women: Helen Keller is on the reverse side of the 2003 Alabama quarter, and Susan B. Anthony was on the dollar coin until 1981.
Although the new campaign still seems a longshot, a similar petition also prompted Britain to announce in 2013 that it would put Jane Austen on the 10-pound note.
The organization whittled down a list of finalists based on two main criteria: the individual’s impact on society; and the difficulty they faced in doing so, Stone said.
The campaign selected 15 possible women to replace Jackson. The public can vote for the top three that will advance to a second round of voting. In honor of Women’s History Month, The Durango Herald asked local female leaders who they would honor with a place on the bill. The leaders did not have to choose one of the official candidates; instead they were free to nominate any woman they felt worthy of the honor. Click through the slideshow above to see who Durango leaders selected.
Here is the official list from the campaign:
Alice Paul, women’s suffragist
Betty Friedan, author of The Feminine Mystique
Shirley Chisholm, first African-American woman elected to Congress
Sojourner Truth, abolitionist
Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring
Rosa Parks, symbol of the civil-rights movement
Barbara Jordan, first African-American elected to the Texas Senate
Margaret Sanger, championed legalizing contraception
Patsy Mink, first Asian-American elected to Congress
Clara Barton, founded the American Red Cross
Harriet Tubman, abolitionist
Frances Perkins, labor secretary under Franklin Roosevelt
Susan Anthony, abolitionist and women’s suffragist
Eleanor Roosevelt, first lady
Elizabeth Cady Stanton, women’s suffragist
firstname.lastname@example.org. The Washington Post contributed to this story.