Qualified to speak
Being a woman, being 5-8 and being a past SV 650 and KLR owner......I would lean towards an SV. I would also lean towards a 2003 or newer just so you get the FI. If you're riding in flat terrain (relatively) the older carbureted SV's are great and actually the engines of the carbureted ones are a bit more hearty than the '03 and later FI ones.
The SV's are a torquey 70+hp with nice power delivery, they also have tons of suspension upgrades since they have been very popular on the racing circuits.
I rented a Buell Blast once, thinking a 500 would be ok for a little freeway riding. What a mistake that was. I would not recommend the Blast. It is under powered and not very stable at freeway speeds.
The EX250 and 500's are a good stepping stone too and easy to sell in the used market.
I would throw in all the dirt riding she can stand too as a great way to become proficient on the street. American Supercamp uses the XR100's.