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1. Uzoamaka Maduka, 26

Despite the growing trend of digital publications, this editor in chief followed her dreams of launching a print magazine called The American Reader. The monthly literary journal covers literature and criticism.

2. Zakiya Smith, 28

Zakiya Smith, 28

Smith serves as the strategy director for student financial success at the Lumina Foundation. Before her current position, she worked as the senior adviser for Education at the White House Domestic Policy Council.

3. Amanda Brown, 28

Brown serves as the national political director for Rock the Vote, where she works to bring young voters to the polls through social media and other digital outlets.

4. Aminatou Sow, 28

Aminatou Sow, 28

Sow co-founded Tech LadyMafia, a list-serv and membership group, to show the world that tech-savvy women exist. Here, female members share their accomplishments, new projects ideas and tips.

5. Angelica Towne, 27

Angelica Towne, 27

This year, the Phoenix Mercury star became the first openly-gay athlete to sign an endorsement deal with Nike.

6. Issa Rae, 28

Issa Rae, 28

We first met this talented writer, producer and director in her popular web series “The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl.” Now, the 28-year-old Los Angeles native is penning her first book and working a new show for HBO, which she plans to star in.

7. Janelle Monae, 28

Janelle Monae, 28

Prince named Monae’s sophomore album, The Electric Lady, “the best album released this year.” That’s hugh!

8. Jessica Matthews, 25

Jessica Matthews, 25

Matthews serves as the co-founder of Uncharted Play, a company that makes soccer balls with built-in batteries. The invention is ideal for towns without electricity. After a half-hour of play, the soccer ball absorbs enough energy to charge the battery and power a plugged-in LED light for five hours!

9. Katrina Craigwell, 28

Katrina Craigwell, 28

Craigwell serves as the global manager of digital marketing at General Electric, where she leads content creation and distribution across GE.com, Txchnologist.com and GE’s corporate properties.

10. Mandela Schumacher-Hodge, 28

Schumacher-Hodge is a cofounder of Tioki, an online professional group that’s been dubbed “The LinkedIn for Teachers.” This year, the Ph.D. candidate also headed the UP Global with their worldwide initiative to help educators, parents, students, entrepreneurs, developers, and designers.

11. Quvenzhane Wallis, 10

Quvenzhane Wallis, 10

This rising star stunned the world with her performance of Hush Puppy in 2012’s “Beasts of the Southern Wild.” Now at 10 years young, Wallis is taking on the iconic role of Annie. According to sources, she will earn a reported $1.5 million for the role.

12. Rihanna, 25

Rihanna, 25

RiRi has been on top of her game since her 2005 debut. According to reports, she earned a whopping $43 million in 2013.

13. Meet the Women

Forbes’ third annual ’30 Under 30’ list dropped this week and we are happy to report that 15 Black women graced the honorable lists. From finance and education to Hollywood and sports, each of the 15 categories honored the movers and shakers we should be on the look out for in 2014.

14. Lauren Wilson, 26

Wilson works as the policy counsel for Free Press, an organization that fights for better media practices.

15. Jessica Holsey, 29

Holsey serves as the co-founder of Susty Party, a company that makes eco-friendly tableware. Their products include plates, bowls, cups and straws — all made in the U.S.A. with renewable harvested plants.

16. Angelica Towne, 27

Angelica Towne, 27

Towne co-founded Educate! with two other partners. In 2013, the organization, which works to transform Uganda’s education system, reached 8,000 students with their two-year social entrepreneurship program.

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