By her early twenties, Yeonmi Park lived through experiences that few people of any age will ever know. She confronts her past with a startling resilience, refusing to be defined by the circumstances of her former life in North Korea. Her testimony is unimaginable but remarkably full of strength and hope. We can all learn something about perseverance, humanity and embracing ambition from Yeonmi.

I had to learn how to be free.

Women Rule is a journalism series dedicated to exploring women’s leadership in politics, policy and their communities. Produced by POLITICO in partnership with Google and the Tory Burch Foundation, Women Rule includes large-scale summits, newsmaker interviews, networking events, podcasts and original reporting.