Depending on who you listen to, America will soon/probably soon/no way in hell elect it's first female president. Of course, women have led great countries -- for both good or ill, but usually for good -- in the past. I thought it would be interesting to take a brief look at one such woman.
Sources differ, but today may be the 632nd anniversary of the crowning of Jadwiga (or Hedwig or Hedvig) as the King of Poland, even though she was a woman. Her reign lasted for fifteen years, until her death, and she is generally regarded as one of the greatest rulers of Poland, Two years into her reign she married Jogaila, the grand duke of Lithuania; although she then shared the throne with him she remained the leading personality in the realm. It was only after her death that Jogaila could have any authority over the country. Jawiga's popular rule helped to establish a century old peace in the region through canny alliances and spreading Catholicism. Her championship of education helped establish Krakow as the center of Polish civilization and influence. She was canonized in 1997 by Pope John Paul II.
Here's the Wikipedia entry on this extraordinary woman: