4 Inspiring 'Cover Girls' Who Are Showing Our Daughters They Can Do Anything

Rochelle BallantyneRochelle Ballantyne is a girl on a mission. Steadily chasing her dream to become the first African-American female chess master, the Brooklyn native and current Stanford student is fearless, determined -- and a true inspiration. So it is no wonder that she is one of the remarkable young women featured in CoverGirl's #GirlsCan campaign, whose digital content series showcases kick-ass female trailblazers who are proudly helping lead their generation on to great things.


Taught how to play chess as a young girl by her beloved late grandmother, Rochelle is on her way to making history in the game. As we learn in her #GirlsCan video, less than 2 percent of competitive players have reached master status, and there are only 846 masters in the U.S. But only 50 of them are women or girls.

And none of those 50 are African-American.

"I was trying to figure out why women don't play chess, and why black women don't play chess -- especially black women from my background," she told The Stir. In sharing her story, she said she hopes people are inspired by it, to "recreate it and make it better in their own way." Raised in a rough neighborhood, Rochelle has faced financial struggles along her path -- her other major goal is to be able to help her family financially -- but the rising star remains determined. Not to mention unfazed by the idea of rising the ranks in the male-dominated chess world.

"I love the idea that all these guys thought they were better than me, and [I love] that I could beat them," she said.

She advises to any girls struggling with their own passions that "when things get rough, just remember why you loved your passion to begin with. Remember how important it is to not give up, or why you never gave up to begin with." See Rochelle's awesome #GirlsCan video here:

Here are three more incredible stories that remind us no girl should ever stop saying, "I can":

Geena Rocero

Transgender model and activist Geena is advocating for her community all over the world. In her #GirlsCan video below, the Gender Proud founder says, "How could you go wrong if you're announcing your absolute truth?" Her moving story will have you feeling inspired.

Becky G

In a music community not known for a plethora of Latina rappers, this dynamic young arist is forging her own path. In her video, her parents tell of the time when a 9-year-old Becky presented them with her own typed-out contract for her plan to break into the music biz. The girl was clearly born with fierce determination.

Tina Garnanez

Tina Garnanez is a true hero. When the brave military vet returned home from a combat zone, she faced terrible PTSD -- but she found the strength to overcome it. And in doing so and sharing her story, she sheds light on the oft-overlooked struggle of female vets everywhere, and brings awareness to the fact that female vets need support too.


Image courtesy of CoverGirl

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