20 Women Leaders Under 40 You Should Know

in Next Generation Leadership. 78 Comments

So let me be clear…. this isn’t a TOP TEN list. Or a TOP TWENTY list. It’s just a list. with 20 influential women leaders. All under 40 (I’m 99% sure!). That you should know about.

There are many other women leaders under 40 that you should know about, but they are just not on this list, because I’m only including 20…… on this particular list. of women leaders under 40……

OK, so please add to the list by commenting below if you know of someone else who should be included.

1. Priscilla Shirer- Going Beyond Ministries

2. Jo Saxton3DM Ministries

3. Esther Fleece- Focus on the Family special assistant to the President

4. Jenni CatronCross Point Church

5. Vicky Beeching- blogger, singer, songwriter, and now PhD student in the UK!

6. Jeanne StevensSoul City Church

7. Margaret FeinbergFeinberg Worldwide!

8.Phileena HeuertzWord Made Flesh

9. Shauna NiequistNiequist Enterprises!

10. Nikki Toyama-SzetoIntervarsity, Urbana

11. Bethany HoangInternational Justice Mission

12. Jena Lee NardellaBlood:Water Mission

13. Lindsey Nobles- Project 7

14. Kari Jobe- worship leader and singer/songwriter

15. Joy Eggerichs- blogger, writer and researcher for Love and Respect

16. Jennie Allen- speaker and author of Stuck and Anything

17. Jen Hatmaker-author, speaker and Church planter at Austin New Church

18. Heather Larson- director of Compassion and Justice ministries, Willow Creek Community Church

19. Christy Nockels- singer, songwriter and worship leader at Passion City Church

20. Brandi Wilson- mother, wife and leader at Cross Point Church and Leading and Loving It

Bonus: Katie Davis- author of Kisses from Katie and founder of Amazima Ministries

What other women leaders under 40 should we know about?


  1. Jonathan says:

    Kristi Griem with FreeSet – KristiGriem.com

  2. Ashley W. says:

    Bianca Olthoff
    Storyteller for The A21 Campaign

  3. Lauren says:

    Bianca Juarez (Olthoff) – IntheNameofLove.org
    Lauren Dubinsky – GoodWomanProject.com
    Crystal Renaud – dirtygirlsministries.com

  4. Allie Griffin says:

    Emily Worrall – founder of Ekisa Ministries (www.ekisa.org)
    Tricia DeBoer – founder of Africa Arise

  5. Wendy Chinn says:

    Beth Moore’s two daughters, both under 40, are both very influential. Melissa Moore Fitzpatrick helped her write the latest James Bible study, and Amanda Jones (Beth’s oldest daughter) just recently helped plant a new church in Houston (Bayou City Fellowship) where her hubby Curtis is the pastor. Both daughters work for Living Proof Ministries and have been active on the LPM blog, where their posts are read by thousands. They all also heavily followed on Twitter by the same ladies.

  6. Lee says:

    Love some of the names I see, and I’m going to look up those I don’t recognize – but I’d like to add

    Britt Nicole – awesome singer!

  7. So thankful to know so many of these women! A great list, Brad. I just don’t deserve to be on it. Counting down the days to Catalyst West!

  8. Huge honor to be recognized among these wonderful women. Thank you, Brad. And thank for honoring women in ministry!!

  9. My girl Lisa Whittle (www.lisawhittle.com) and Nicki Koziarz and Sarah and Sam from She Seeks. (www.sheseeks.org). A ministry focused on young women.

  10. Holly Nater says:

    Rachel Ramsey Cruze should be added! Following in her dad’s footsteps and getting to teens and college age students about finances. Maybe me one day. :)

  11. Alise says:

    I’d add author Rachel Held Evans to that list. Her upcoming book about “biblical” womanhood is going to be a game-changer.

  12. Karen Yates says:

    Great list, Brad! So many fantastic women you’ve mentioned! I might also include Ann Voskamp at (In)Courage. Also noteable is Kristen Howerton (rageagainsttheminivan.com). Loved that you mentioned Katie. :)

  13. Ashley W. says:

    A few more to add!

    Annie Dollarhide


    Nicole Reyes

  14. Phileena says:

    You are so kind Brad. Thanks. Add Sarah Lance, Director of Sari Bari, India

  15. Wow. This age-defying make up is really working. I’m 54.

    Thank you for putting me on the list. An honor to be listed next to women I greatly admire.

  16. Leslie Parrish says:

    You should check out up and coming blogger Hanna Easley (@hannaeasley). She’s the daughter of former Moody Bible Institute President Dr. Michael Easley, and making huge inroads with the college aged girl population. Her blog is dearhanna.com.

  17. Bonnie says:

    Lina AbuJamra
    Lina AbuJamra is a Pediatric Emergency Room doctor in Chicago and the Women’s Ministry Director at Harvest Bible Chapel. She is a women’s Bible study teacher and communicator who blogs daily at livingwithpower.org. She is the author of 3 Bible studies: The unconventional series – a Study of Luke, The upside down series – the book of Acts, and Rescued – a Study of Genesis. You can also follow her on twitter @Linamay.

  18. Thank you for putting this together! I love and appreciate many of the women on this list!

  19. Amelia says:

    Asher Collie of Sole Hope

    Esther Havens- humanitarian photographer; http://estherhavens.com/

    Angie Smith

  20. Brian Howell says:

    Veronica Navarette Ponce-Vigil. She is the co-founder and director of the BRIDGE program at Wheaton College. As a sophomore she approached the administration to start a college preparatory program for minority and first generation college bound Christian high school students. It’s been a tremendous success. She’s 24.

  21. Jenni Catron says:

    Brad, honored to be among this list. I would echo some of the other recommendations so far… Angie Smith, Rachel Cruze & Melissa Moore Fitzpatrick.

  22. Betsy says:

    Kelly Minter!! http://kellyminter.com/

    Amazing sinner, author of women’s Bible studies, and great speaker! Her Ruth and No Other Gods studies are awesome!

  23. Brad, I’d add somebody I recently came across out of Nashville, TN, Katie Strandlund.


  24. Fawn Parish says:

    Adelita Garza is a phenomenal single church planter with a distinctive anointing. She grew up as a child as a migrant farm worker in Othello Washington, was part of the Pew Hispanic Theological Initiative at Princeton, and got her Master’s at Fuller Theological Seminary. She pastors in Santa Paula, Ca. and was voted female church planter of the year by her denomination.

  25. Ali Alvarez says:

    I would like to submit Ivette Diaz, a former attachee of President George W. Bush’s office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives. Ivette has served in various outstanding community initiatives and is currently on staff with the Focus Leadership Institute which is equipping the next generation of Christian leaders.

  26. What an honor Brad! So glad I slid in the “under 40″ category!

    Love seeing all the recommendations as well. Thanks for introducing me to some ladies I don’t know who are changing the world. See you in a couple of weeks.

  27. Sarah Crisp says:

    Kelly Minter (writer of Bible studies, singer/song-writer, heart for missions), and Ann Voskamp (blogger, writer of “1000 gifts”, Compassion representative).

    Thanks for the list!!

  28. Thanks for sharing this list Brad! I’ll be sure to check them out.

  29. Judy Lewis says:

    Someone already mentioned Voskamp–huge following, NYT best-seller. I also love Sara Hagerty of http://everybitterthingissweet.com/2011/12/beauty-is-a-birthday-party/
    singer/songwriters Natalie Grant, Sara Groves

    More African American women?

  30. April Karli says:

    Rachel Held Evans for sure. author of Evolving in Monkeytown and upcoming book about “biblical” womanhood.

  31. Dave Sevilla says:

    Madai Ramirez – church of God licensed minister.
    She is a single young woman breaking barriers in male dominated ministries; she has been the FIRST female keynote speaker at youth camps and youth conventions. A true testimony that pastor’s children really can go above and beyond. She is currently serving as an international evangelist. She can be reached at revmadai@gmail.com

  32. Abbie Unger says:

    Jessi Connolly of http://www.naptimediaries.com
    She’s a blogger and mommy who is follow God and her husband all over the place. All the while she’s loving people and showing them Jesus with her life

    start here: http://www.naptimediaries.com/2012/04/glorys-story.html

  33. Sibyl Towner says:

    I know some on the list….great choices and serving to make the world a more beautiful place. May their number grow.

    How were these women selected?
    I have one I would add…Mallory Minor. She has been the Director of Development for Oasis for Orphans.

  34. Dave Lomelli says:

    Where is Bianca Juarez-Olthoff? She has spoken at Catalyst and I think she is a clear, young voice speaking to so many women (and men!) about missionally engaging with culture. My two-cents would be to add her to the list. Thanks for appreciating women and the value they bring.

  35. [...] 20 Women Leaders Under 40 You Show Know by Brad Lomenick.  I have a passion for the Christian community to understand the value that women bring to leadership and provide them opportunities to leverage that giftedness. [...]

  36. Laura says:

    There are some great women on this list! Truly thankful for them and glad to celebrate their gifts, but here’s a different perspective: http://awakemysoulblog.com/2012/04/09/how-to-make-the-top-10-list/

    • bradlomenick says:

      thanks Laura for your comments. I appreciate your perspective on this. As I said in the beginning of the post in BOLD, this is not a top 20 list. It was just simply a chance for me to share with our community of leaders about some great women leaders I know of and want others to know about what they are doing. It’s not meant to affirm some and not affirm others. There are hundreds of thousands of other young women leaders out there under 40 who are doing great work that I don’t know and don’t know about. It’s meant to simply share some names of those whom I’ve run across that are doing good work and might be an inspiration to others.

  37. Haddie says:

    What about Nish Weiseth? She created A Deeper Story (http://DeeperStory.com), and is very influential.

  38. Jason Davis says:

    Erin Davis – Writer of books, blogs, and thank you cards. Jason’s wife. Eli and Noble’s mom. Jesus’ devoted follower.

    Blogs at: http://www.beyondbathtime.com and http://www.liesyoungwomenbelieve.com

    Graffiti – Learning To See The Art In Ourselves
    Lies Young Women Believe – Companion – with Nancy Leigh Demoss and Dannah Fresh
    True Princess – Living A Life Of Humility In An All About Me World
    The Bare Facts – with Josh McDowell
    Beyond Bath Time – Embracing Motherhood As A Sacred Roll

    Thanks for the great list!

  39. [...] Here are 20 Women Leaders Under 40 You Should Know [...]

  40. Roger Sharp says:

    I’m extremely biased, but Mary Jo Sharp is currently producing a new Bible Study with LifeWay, authoring a book for women leadership on apologetics (Kregel), has a new chapter in a book with Paul Copan and William Lane Craig (B&H), and has two formal debates with Muslims. She just turned 38 :)


    Roger Sharp

  41. Tasha says:

    Heather Lindsey- Organization- Pinky Promise
    Heather Lindseyheatherllindsey.blogspot.com

  42. Annie says:

    Not a leader quite yet, but a serious up & comer: Jessica Richardson over at Staying Salty [stayingsalty.tumblr.com]. She’s a college student from what I understand who is being used by the Holy Spirit to bring Truth to college students through Apologetics. Men seem to dominate apologetics so to come across a young woman who is preparing young adults to defend their faith (and take the time to answer questions from seekers) in a relatable way is encouraging.

  43. Joe says:

    Mandy Arioto from Mosaic. She’s gaining a presence as a speaker and writer.

    Here’s a talk she gave recently: http://vimeo.com/38392347
    Check out her blog at http://www.mandyarioto.com

  44. Sarah Horn http://www.sarahorn.com/
    Jocelyn Green http://www.jocelyngreen.com/
    both minister to military wives, which is near and dear to my own heart and calling. Love these two women. They’ve been influential in my life during deployments.

  45. My daughter, Jessica Bolyard, is going to be a big, bright shining star. She’ll be attending Jumping Tandem next April. Remember her name. Read her blog: http://adjustingtotheworld.com

  46. [...] 20 Women Leaders Under 40 You Should Know. These women are making an impact in a variety of fields – all for the glory of [...]

  47. Rebekah says:

    Annie Downs


    Thanks for letting us know about all these great women to follow! It’s soo encouraging to find other women leading and building the Kingdom of God!

  48. Jessica says:

    Definitely add Lis Burns to the list. She’s the pastor’s wife at Access Church in Lakeland and Brandon, FL (www.access.tv) and a GREAT blogger – http://www.LisBurns.com.

  49. Susan says:

    Lila Grace Rose. The most brilliant, grace & truth-filled, godly, courageous & compassionate young woman you can find. Not to mention beautiful.
    And no, I’m not her mom or related :)

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