To celebrate Women’s History Month here at Stately Beat Manor, we’ve put together a list of 47 badass women of Star Trek!
This list is nowhere near exhaustive. Did we miss your favorite? Let us know! The Beat is waiting to hear from you, right here in the comment section or over on social media @comicsbeat.
Nyota Uhura (Nichelle Nichols & Celia Rose Gooding)
When the first episode of Star Trek: The Original Series first aired, communications officer Nyota Uhura was there on the bridge! A key player in all three seasons of TOS, Uhura continued to make an impression on the bridge of the Enterprise in the sequel series, Star Trek: The Animated Series. In fact, TAS even allowed Uhura to take command of the Enterprise in one episode!
Uhura also appeared in all 6 of the TOS cast movies. And in Star Trek: Picard season 2, background details revealed she became a Starfleet Captain, commanding the first ship on which Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) served. On Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, Gooding gives us a look of Uhura’s early days on the Enterprise.
Lwaxana Troi (Majel Barrett-Roddenberry)
Originally making her debut on Star Trek: The Next Generation, Lwaxana may have managed to top these memorable appearances when she heavily flirted with the rule-abiding shapeshifter Odo (René Auberjonois) on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Regrettably, Barrett-Roddenberry died before the debut of Star Trek: Lower Decks, a venue that would have provided an incredible stage for Lwaxana.
“My mother’s joy came from bringing Lwaxana Troi to life because they didn’t write that character for her, but that was her being herself. She wouldn’t let anyone put her in her place. She was over the top, and she was flamboyant. When push came to shove, she would shove back,” said Rod Roddenberry about his mother’s favorite role in the Star Trek franchise in an interview with Geek Girl Authority.
Vice Admiral Janeway (Kate Mulgrew)
On Star Trek: Voyager, Captain Kathryn Janeway gave us our first leading lady commander. Over the course of all seven seasons, Janeway fearlessly guided her wayward crew back to Earth from the Delta Quadrant. Meanwhile, she consumed a lot of coffee and conducted experiments that revolutionized many areas of Starfleet science upon Voy’s return.
A few years after the conclusion of Voyager, on Star Trek: Prodigy, two different versions of Janeway play key roles. While the Emergency Training Hologram Janeway guides the young crew of the USS Protostar, Vice Admiral Janeway plays a game of cat-and-mouse with the misunderstood crew.
Michael Burnam (Sonequa Martin-Green)
Burnham didn’t start in the center chair on Star Trek: Discovery, and since the start of the series, we’ve seen her under the command of Captains that span the competence spectrum. Fortunately, that’s all behind us now, as a leap to the far-flung future at the outset of season 3 has allowed Captain Burnham to take her rightful place at the top of Disco’s chain of command.
Time and again, Burnham demonstrates her competent leadership in matters personal and professional. Equally impressive is Martin-Green’s work on the series behind the camera, which earned her a producer credit for the show’s fourth season.
Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan)
After being rescued from the Borg on Voyager, Seven was integrated into the Voy crew under the tutelage and guidance of Captain Janeway. After returning to the Alpha Quadrant with the crew, Seven attempted to join Starfleet, but was rejected. She instead became a defender of the innocent by joining the Fenris Rangers.
On Picard, Seven’s ongoing involvement with Admiral Picard’s adventures led to her successful conscription into Starfleet. As the First Officer aboard the USS Titan-A in Picard season 3, Seven plays an important role during a crucial mission.
D’Vana Tendi (Noël Wells)
As one of the first Orion ever to enlist in Starfleet, Tendi is truly going boldly where no one has gone before! Orion slave girls were originally introduced in the original pilot of TOS. While other Orion women have appeared in Star Trek shows since then, Tendi represents a major step forward in the depiction of the alien species.
In Lower Decks season 3, Tendi begins to accept her Orion heritage and her career gets fast-tracked due to her ongoing Science Officer training. And thanks to a holodeck movie, she can finally see herself in the role of Captain for the first time. Tendi is both the dreamer and the dream. She deserves all the pesto she can eat!
Hoshi Sato (Linda Park)
On the bridge of the NX-01 Enterprise on Star Trek: Enterprise, Hoshi serves an important role in humanity’s fledging steps into the stars. As linguist, her role is fundamental to the communications abilities of the crew under Captain Jonathan Archer (Scott Bakula).
In the Mirror Universe, Hoshi also plays an important role. After murdering Mirror Archer, she becomes the first Terran Emperor. In the opening pages of Star Trek: Discovery: Die Standing by John Jackson Miller, Emperor Sato is quoted: “I started as an educator. The lesson I teach today: it takes only one Terran to turn reality upside down, and change the future…”
Nurse Christine Chapel (Majel Barrett-Roddenberry & Jess Bush)
First appearing in 1966’s TOS episode “The Naked Time,” Gene Roddenberry snuck his wife Majel on to the CBS set in a blonde wig and cast her as the badass essential worker of the Enterprise, Nurse Chapel. Before she spent time pining over Science Officer Spock (Leonard Nimoy) and bandaging up a whiney Captain James T. Kirk (William Shatner), Chapel earned several advanced degrees to become a bio-researcher.
Did I mention she’s queer AF? By the time Star Trek: The Motion Picture rolls around, she’s not only queer AF, but she’s also a queer AF doctor.
T’Pol (Jolene Blalock)
As the first Vulcan to serve aboard a starship helmed by humans, T’Pol had to put up with a lot—especially that human odor. Once she got used to the smell, T’Pol’s time with the hoo-mans proved invaluable, and she learned to stand up for herself even when it went against the wishes of the High Command. While falling in love and making babies certainly doesn’t make you great, boldly going to home base with Chief Engineer Trip Tucker is a story for the herstory books!
Una Chin-Riley (Majel Barrett-Roddenberry & Rebecca Romijin)
Una, or simply “Number One,” first appeared in the original TOS pilot. However, her part was cut from the series. Barrett-Roddenberry was subsequently recast, both as the aforementioned Nurse Chapel and the Enterprise computer. Later, on TAS, she also played the original Caitian, communications officer M’Ress.
Meanwhile, SNW is finally giving Una the chance for further development. Over the course of the first season, we learned that Una is a genetic augment. This means she’s barred from Starfleet service, and has enlisted under false pretenses. Just how this engaging ongoing storyline plays out remains to be seen, and the character’s absence during TOS lends tension to the dangling plot thread.
Captain Carol Freeman (Dawnn Lewis)
As the Captain of a California-class ship, Freeman doesn’t always get the respect that she’s earned. However, that never stops her from fully committing to performing her duties as a Starfleet officer. This includes when she’s facing sarcastic Vulcan salutes from her daughter and dealing with one of those Starfleet Badmirals that seem to show up so often.
Time and again, Freeman proves that the support ships are just as important to the continued operation of the Federation as any flagship could be. And besides, the Cerritos is kind of like the Enterprise of the Cali-class. Cerritos strong!
Philipa Georgiou (Michelle Yeoh)
Georgiou Prime was a decorated Starfleet Captain in her own right. However, she dies early on in the series. We get a much better chance to get to know Mirror Georgiou over the course of the character’s multi-season role on Discovery.
After being dragged into our universe, the sharp-tongued and shockingly intelligent Mirror Georgiou winds up joining the secret Starfleet division Section 31. While the character is currently MIA after stepping through the Guardian of Forever, the Star Trek: Section 31 spinoff starring Mirror Georgiou reportedly remains in development.
Dr. Gillian Taylor (Catherine Hicks)
In Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, Dr. Taylor is a whale biologist who works for the Cetacean Institute in Sausalito, California in 1986. She plays an important role in ensuring humpback whales George and Gracie are able to travel back to the future at the climax of the movie.
Once she arrives in the future, it appears as though Taylor makes a splash herself. In Lower Decks, the logo for the Cetacean Ops division aboard the Cerritos borrows heavily from the 1980s logo for the Cetacean Institute. This heavily implies that Taylor’s work plays an important role in the development of this popular field of study.
Kira Nerys (Nana Visitor)
Nerys can go toe-to-toe with anyone: Cardassian prison warden and fascist despot Gul Dukat, fellow rage-fueled Bajoran freedom fighter Lieutenant Shax, and even a pansexual Mirror Universe version of herself.
On Lower Decks, it is revealed that in the wake of Captain Benjamin Sisko (Avery Brooks) becoming a wormhole alien god, Nerys took over as commander of Deep Space 9.
Jadzia Dax & Ezri Dax (Terry Farrell & Nicole de Boer)
Jadzia and Ezri are the two Trill hosts of the Dax symbiote who play an important role in the events of DS9. In events that took place before the series, a former male host of the symbiote was good friends with Captain Sisko. This adds an extra dimension to the relationship between Jadzia and Sisko, who affectionately refers to her as “old man.”
Regrettably, Jadzia is murdered by the despicable Gul Dukat in the penultimate season of DS9. However, this does give the opportunity for us to meet Ezri, who proves to offer a hitherto unseen perspective on the proceedings that take place on the space station.
Rok-Tahk (Rylee Alazraqui)
As the youngest Federation crew member on this list, Rok-Tahk, a refugee from Brikar, is a genius with a pension for all of the scientific disciplines and a heart of gold. Every planet that Rok-Tahk visits proves that she’ll do anything for creatures great and small, even risk her life.
Read Rebecca Oliver Kaplan’s interview with Alazraqui here.
Deanna Troi (Marina Sirtis)
While Picard may keep his Number One close at hand, he keeps his counselor, Troi, equally close. Over the course of TNG, this proves to be the best possible decision, as Troi’s insight regularly proves invaluable in the conflicts faced by the Enterprise-D.
In spite of serving on a Federation ship, Troi rarely wears a regulation Starfleet uniform. However, this sartorial decision demonstrates that the flagship’s counselor is beyond competent, whether she’s wearing a Starfleet uniform or not!
Gwyndala (Ella Purnell)
A genetic clone created by her father, The Diviner (John Noble), Gwyn was literally designed to unite her people, the Vau N’Akat. Over the course of Star Trek: Prodigy’s first season, Gwyn found her way to her purpose, a complex journey that is still in progress.
Just how Gwyn will play into future seasons remains to be seen. Nevertheless, as an initial antagonist who became part of the core crew of the Protostar, Gwyn carries on and embodies some of the most important themes from Janeway’s former crew aboard Voy.
Doctor T’Ana (Gillian Vigman)
When she was first introduced on Lower Decks, T’Ana could be considered “a cat in a coat,” as Ensign Fletcher unfavorably dubs her. However as the character has revealed more of herself to audiences, she has become a fan favorite.
Part of her undeniable appeal comes from her passionate romance with Bajorian beefcake Shax. Better yet, while T’Ana is an undeniably sexual character, she’s never subjected to the male gaze. When it comes to T’Ana, the gaze subjects you.
B’Elanna Torres (Roxann Dawson)
There aren’t very many role models if you’re a women with suicidal ideation, especially in STEM. As a former Federation foe and Maquis Resistance fighter, when the Maquis ship that Torres was stationed on and Voyager get stranded in the Delta Quadrant, she must adapt to Starfleet rules and regulations after she’s named Chief Engineer.
It’s not an easy journey for the Klingon-Human engineer—in fact, she almost commits suicide before the starship finds its way back to Earth—but in the end, she discovers a will to live and the strength within herself to keep fighting against impossible odds.
Oh, and she’ll always have Tom Paris.
Sylvia Tilly (Mary Wiseman)
Who’s hot for teacher? Every single cadet whose had the pleasure of having Professor Tilly. Not only is Professor Tilly a science genius who programmed the food replicator to produce only spumoni ice cream by calculating the exact protein concentration and small particle dispersion of emulsifiers required, but she also knows how to whip out her survival training skills at the drop of a shuttle. In the 32nd century, she saves several cadets when a training mission goes south.
Me Hani Ika Hali Po (Yadira Guevara-Prip)
Thanks to Tilly’s spumoni ice cream, Po, Queen of Xahea, saves galaxies. That may be putting their storyline simply, but Tilly and Po are proof positive of the power of female friendships. With a mother who encouraged her to be extraordinary and brother who taught her science, Po eventually develops a dilithium incubator that enables recrystalization of the mineral, making her world the most politically-relevant planet in the Alpha Quadrant. Luckily, thanks to the Queen’s relationship with Tilly, Po and Xahea remain safe.
Jett Reno (Tig Notaro)
Reno crashed on a planet with the rest of her crew. As the ship’s only surviving crew member, she had to put all of her skills as an engineer to work to survive until the Disco rescued her. A few seasons later, she saved the day with licorice—yes, licorice—and her finely honed wit.
La’An Noonien-Singh (Christina Chong)
The descendant of Khan Noonien Singh, one of Star Trek‘s most notorious villains, La’An showed that she’s more than in her genes in the first season of SNW. Hopefully, La’An will be writing a ‘How to Slay the Gorn’ manual sometime in the future.
Read Avery Kaplan’s interview with Chong here.
Doctor Agnes Jurati (Alison Pill)
A cyberneticist at the Daystrom Institute who becomes wrapped up in Picard’s misadventures in the first and second seasons of Picard, Jurati eventually merges with an alternate-timeline Borg Queen (Annie Wersching). After performing a show-stealing rendition of “Shadows of the Night,” the mind-merged duo goes on to become the first member of a new kind of Borg: the Jurati Collective.
The Jurati Collective is currently guarding a massive tear in space-time that tore open in the season premiere and finale of Picard’s second season. While she does not appear in Picard’s third season, we’ll hopefully hear more from this intriguing new evolution of Jurati soon.
Beckett Mariner (Tawny Newsome)
While she may not be a fan of protocol, Mariner is still Starfleet through and through! As the self-appointed boss of Beta Shift, Mariner sometimes instigates chaos in the name of “building character.” But at the end of the day, nothing’s more important to her than her family, chosen or biological.
Over the course of the third season of Lower Decks, Mariner was in a relationship with Jen the Andorian (Lauren Lapkus). However, it’s unclear if this coupling will recur in season 4. Plus, we’re looking forward to seeing how Mariner mixes with new Cerritos arrival T’Lyn (Gabrielle Ruiz).
President Laira Rillak (Chelah Horsdal)
Rillak is a politician who was elected president of the Federation of Planets in 3190. While in this position, she faced a sweeping tragedy that challenged her leadership: the advent of the Dark Matter Anomaly. Fortunately, Rillak is a strong and competent leader who helps keep the Federation together during this difficult interval. At the conclusion of the season, she and Captain Burnham welcome Earth back into the Federation.
Doctor Beverly Crusher (Gates McFadden)
Originally introduced in the first episode of TNG, Crusher was absent during the second season of the series. This is because she left to become the head of Starfleet Medical! The incredibly gifted M.D. returned to the Enterprise-D in the third season and played a key role in many of the adventures undertaken by that ship and its predecessor, the Enterprise-E.
T’Pring (Arlene Martel, Gia Sandhu & Ethan Peck)
Over the course of the first season of SNW, T’Pring has played an important role in multiple episodes. In one of them, “Spock Amok,” she even temporarily switched bodies with her betrothed and was thus obligated to reluctantly engage in hijinks.
In the TOS episode “Amok Time,” T’Pring executes her right to kal-if-fee in order to break her engagement to Spock, preferring another mate, Stonn. No need to feel bad for Spock, however. He returned to the Enterprise with his boyfriend, Kirk.
Raffi Musiker (Michelle Hurd)
Happy Birthday, Raffi! It’s not easy to get clean. It’s especially not easy to get clean in the 25th century, in which designer drugs are tailored to be even more addictive using an ophthalmic drug delivery system, a particularly nasty way to get high that has an added risk of addiction. With drugs designed to each junkie’s taste so that repeat customers don’t turn to another dealer, it’s hard for any 21st and 25th century addict to turn over a new leaf.
Using today’s understanding of substance abuse, rates of addiction are higher in the LGBTQIA+ community because of the political, social, and cultural pressure of being queer in America. This makes Star Trek: Picard’s decision to tell a story of addiction and recovery with a Black bisexual woman extremely relevant to today.
T’Veen (Stephanie Czajkowski)
T’Veen is the science officer aboard the Titan-A in Picard season 3. The character is part Vulcan and one-quarter Deltan. Deltans are a species first introduced in TMP, and they are renowned for their sensuality. This ensures an intriguing character combination when combined with the repressive nature of most Vulcans.
Laris (Orla Brady)
Laris is more than the woman who told Picard that he wasn’t worth her waiting around until he got his shit together. She is also a good cook and housekeeper, great Chateau Picard head of security, and excellent former Tal Shiar intelligence officer. As a member of the Romulan intelligence agency, which is known for its ruthless efficiency, Laris would have been responsible for reporting to the highest levels of government and military. Now, she uses her hard-earned Tal Shiar skills to help Picard and Starfleet.
Captain Sonya Gomez (Lycia Naff)
When we first met Gomez on TNG, she was an Ensign who spilled a considerable amount of hot chocolate on Captain Picard. But when she reappears on Lower Decks, Gomez has not only ranked all the way up to Captain herself, she’s in command of the impressive USS Archimedes, an Obena-class ship.
But lest you think success has gone to Gomez’s head, never fear. In “First First Contact,” she even allows Freeman to conduct First Contact with the Laaperians. “No ego on that one,” remarks an intoxicated Freeman after the event.
Lily Sloane (Alfre Woodard)
Anyone who can tell Captain Picard to shut up using a Moby Dick reference is a queen. Also, 2064 appears to be as lily-white as 2023, which comes as no surprise as it’s only a couple of decades after Star Trek‘s Bell Riots. It’s a safe bet to assume that Lily’s indignance towards cis white men is deeply ingrained following years of negative experiences.
Renée Picard (Penelope Mitchell)
Doctor Picard is the single thread holding together Star Trek‘s utopian vision of the future. She was already a trauma survivor by age ten, having survived the capsizing of her sailboat of the coast of Martha’s Vineyard. By age 11, this girl genius had taught herself Cantonese, chess, and fluid dynamics. Her passions led her to a career as a test pilot, and from there, she was recruited by NASA to save the Milky Way Galaxy (and our timeline) with a microorganism found on the Europa Mission.
Saavik (Kristie Alley & Robin Curtis)
Saavik was first introduced in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. In that movie, she became the first person to be seen taking the infamous “Kobayashi Maru” onscreen. She played an important role in the resurrection of the titular Spock in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock. She later became the Captain of the first Titan, a fact that is commemorated by a shuttlecraft bearing her name aboard the Titan-A in Picard season 3.
Guinan (Whoopi Goldberg & Ito Aghayere)
Guinan is the long-(long-)time proprietor of the bar Ten Forward, which has been located in various places, including Los Angeles and aboard the Enterprise-D. She tends bar, and she listens. She is a survivor of the Borg’s assimilation of her species.
Guinan is an invaluable advisor to Picard, and friend to Ensign Ro. Part of her will always be present inside the Nexus due to an event that took place in the first scenes of Star Trek: Generations. Also, she used to hang out with Samuel Clemens.
T’Rina (Tara Rosling)
T’Rina serves as the President of Ni’Var in the late thirty-second century. She must advocate for the interests of her people during a complicated time in the history of the galaxy, and ultimately leads her world to reenter the Federation. Furthermore, her mind-melding abilities are an integral step towards the ultimate successful First Contact with Species 10-C.
Demora Sulu (Jacqueline Kim)
Demora first appeared in Generations, where she was an ensign serving as helmsman aboard the maiden voyage of the Enterprise-B. She is the daughter of the legendary helmsman Hikaru Sulu (George Takei). According to many prose stories and Star Trek Online canon, Demora would later go on to become Captain of the B.
Chancellor L’Rell (Mary Chieffo)
Klingons, the warrior race, aren’t exactly known for how they treat their women, but that doesn’t mean that several Klingon women haven’t risen to power on Qo’nos. One of the Klingon women who stands out the most in the planet’s rich history is L’Rell, who united the Klingon houses and was responsible for ending the Federation-Klingon War. Although, like many women in power, Mother L’Rell had to subscribe to a certain aesthetic to maintain her control, but she did it in feminine Elizabethian royal attire.
To learn more, watch the epic Klingon anthem from STO, “Steel and Flame,” written by Jason Charles Miller and performed by L’Rell (Chieffo), which describes the Chancellor’s return and rise to power within the Klingon empire.
Grilka (Mary Kay Adams)
Grilka lives life full tilt, even bucking Klingon tradition to marry a Ferengi. When Quark claimed that he killed Grilka’s husband Kozak, she forced the barkeep to marry her so that she could retain control of her house. Thus, the House of Kozak became the House of Grilka, and feminists everywhere cheered.
While L’Rell may have been born centuries before Grilka, Chieffo’s interpretation of the Klingon Chancellor was inspired by Adams’ performance in DS9. In an interview with GGA, Chieffo said, “My favorite forever will be Grilka. […] It was a moment of, ‘Oh, it’s still a patriarchal society.’ […] L’Rell had to rise to power, ultimately to Chancellor, which is far more than Grilka got to do, but I’m glad I got to reap some of the benefits of the path she paved.”
Leeta (Chase Masterson)
A dabo girl, and the OG sexy nerd. Leeta played ignorant before Paris Hilton made it cool. The Bajoran has led more than one rebellion. Not only did she work with the Terran Resistance Forces on Terok Nor, but she also teamed up with the rest of the Quark’s Bar staff to create a labor union.
Erica Ortegas (Melissa Navia)
Ortegas is the helmsman on the Enterprise under the command of Captain Christopher Pike (Anson Mount). In addition to her impressive piloting skills, Ortegas is the only one with the hair and wit to match Pike’s generous allotment of each asset.
In the SNW episode “The Elysian Kingdom,” Ortegas carries on one a proud Enterprise helmsman tradition: swashbuckling. Touché, Ortegas!
Ro Laren (Michelle Forbes)
When Ro first joined the crew of the Enterprise-D on TNG, she didn’t exactly face a warm welcome. Nevertheless, Ro managed to earn the respect of the rest of the crew, thanks in part to her friendship with Guinan. However, Ro was never willing to compromise her beliefs in order to fit in. For one thing, she ensured Picard would allow her to bend Starfleet uniform code so she could wear her traditional Bajoran earring.
Ro empathized with the Maquis, and ultimately defected from Starfleet in order to join their ranks. While Ro had initially been considered for DS9, when Forbes declined the offer, she made way for the creation of Kira.
Professor Keiko O’Brien (Rosalind Chao)
She turned a meat eater into a plant lover, and that is only the beginning of her list of achievements. Born in Japan, Keiko is a galaxy-class civilian botanist onboard the Enterprise-D and an elementary school teacher on Deep Space 9. In addition, a Pah-Wraith only possessed her once—in your face, Dukat.
Zora (Sash Striga & Annabelle Wallis)
Zora is the first of her kind, a fully sentient Starfleet vessel. When a Starfleet doctor tells the crew of the Discovery to evaluate Zora to see if her fully integrated sentient programming is against Starfleet regulation, the AI eloquently argues for her right to exist, saying, “I am attached to [my form] as you are to yours.”
Watch Season 4, Episode 7, “…But to Connect,” to see more Zora (and trans allegory at its finest).
Ensign Kearns (Kari Wahlgren)
An ensign aboard the Cali-class USS Carlsbad, Kearns is so skilled at her duties, she even impresses Ensign Mariner. While Beta Shift initially assumes that she thinks she’s too good for them, they later discover she is actually intimidated by the impressive reputation earned by the Cerritos.