Condoleezza Rice grew up in segregated Birmingham, Alabama in the '60s. In her recent book Extraordinary, Ordinary Lives, she vividly recalls the violence of the Ku Klux Klan, and the death of four girlfriends killed in the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing. That crime, she later said, "was calculated to suck the hope out of young lives, [to] bury their aspirations."
But that didn't happen to Condi Rice.
Instead, she went on to become our first female National Security Advisor, our first female African American Secretary of State, and the first female, African-American and the youngest person named Provost of Stanford University.
I can picture her being our first female President someday, too.
Her extraordinary, ordinary life is a role model for American women, including ones like me who are not African-American.