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Who is Washington state’s most inspirational woman?

Bonnie Dunbar, left, a former Space Shuttle astronaut, talks to reporters after she helped raise the flag at upper right on the roof of the Space Needle, Wednesday, Sept. 29, 2010, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Who is the most inspirational woman in your life?

For many in Washington it might be Dr. Bonnie Dunbar who consumer website has named the state’s most inspirational woman.

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Dunbar went a long way from her roots in Sunnyside, Washington. All the way to outer space, in fact. After spending a career in NASA (1978-2005), with five space flights (50 days in space), she retired to head up the Museum of Flight in Seattle. chose an inspirational woman from each state, and a few more from around the world, ahead of Equal Pay Day.

Equal Pay Day

Equal Pay Day is Tuesday, April 10. The specific day marks the time, roughly, that a woman would have to work to earn the equivalent pay a man made in just the previous year. According to the website for the effort, women earn about 80 cents when compared to men. That gap is an average and depends on the industry among other factors. It’s also much wider when considering people of color, or moms and dads.

For a more detailed picture of the gender pay gap, the American Association of University Women has produced a report “The Simple Truth.” It breaks the numbers down by state. Washington women earn about 77 percent of men when it comes to median annual earnings — $58,864 for men, and 45,056 for women.

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