As much as we
tolerate like the "say what you're thankful for" tradition, it's not always the optimal time to gush about your favorite new author or which politician you admire. Sometimes, it's best to keep the dinner table and our soapbox separate. And, yet, when it comes down to it, there are more than just a few women we could thank for making 2013 a year that stands above the rest — and they deserve much more attention than the 10 seconds we'd get at the table.
And, so, in the spirit of the season, we're honoring 16 next-level ladies who may not be seated around your cornucopia but fully deserve a horn of gratitude this year. These gals have scored Oscars, Pulitzers, and Man Booker awards; they've led by example and led Harvard classes; and, yes, they've even gotten pixie cuts (well, one of them did). It's been a big year, and we think there's no better way to give thanks than with a legit shout-out that trumps a turkey leg any day.