Women have played a role in the world since Eve ate of the Fruit of Knowledge and Pandora opened her box. In other words, for good or bad, women have always been a factor in the human race and this decade saw them doing no less than ruling the world in lots of ways. Listed below are politicians and captains of industry, women who in no doubt, rule with an iron fist.
10. Lynn Elsenhans (US)
She is the CEO of Sunoco, a major manufacturer of petroleum and petroleum products. Her overall focus is to help Sunoco lead the way in alternative fuels exploration. She is the Chairperson of the Board for Goldman Sachs Global Energy Conference. As if she can’t handle just two jobs, she is also a director of International Paper.
9. Anne Lauvergeon (France)
Anne Lauvargeon is a former investment banker turned head of the French nuclear utility. She has a degree in physics and began her career in the male dominated steel industry. She has been an advisor to European heads of state and championed environmental causes since 1999.
Her hard work and candor on environmental/industrial subjects is well noted and she is one of the most respected women on this subject in the world.
8. Ho Ching (Singapore)
She is the CEO of Temasek, Singapore’s flagship sovereign wealth fund. For three years she has overseen Temasek’s vaunted 18% compounded annual return- soothing that has been happening with Temasek since the fund’s 1974 inception. Recently Ching announced her retirement and a replacement is being sought. I’m not doing anything next month…..
7. Ellen Kullman (US)
Took on the task of heading up the chemical giant Dupont this year. Kullman was named CEO in January 2009. She had previously served as the company’s president. Her biggest challenge now is how to keep this behemoth’s cash flow flowing. She is also president of her alma mater, Tufts University, as well as the National Safety Council
6. Angela Braly (US)
Since her appointment to CEO in 2007, her salary has nearly tripled. Braly’s ingenuity and knowledge helped Missouri’s Blue Cross convert from a nonprofit into an investor-owned company in 1994 thus increasing its viability. She then moved to WellPoint when the company acquired Blue Cross in 2001. The company now commands more than $60 billion in annual revenues. All of this could go away should health care reform pass in the US. Regardless of that, major accomplishments are still ahead for this legal eagle.
As CEO of Anglo American Carroll has had her hand in the precious commodities market for years. She began her career in aluminum with Alcan and has done work with extensive gas and oil exploration. Her current position also oversees the DeBeers company as well as an iron ore company and AngloGold.
4. Irene Rosenfeld (US)
The chief of Kraft Foods has reduced operating costs by cutting unprofitable product lines and increasing the production of the more profitable one. This has increased sales dramatically for Rosenfeld and Kraft feels, no doubt, lucky to have her. Oreo cookies and Kraft macaroni and cheese were the biggest products for profit, this due in part to the waning and often shaky economy. To be able to boast a 10% sales increase in this economy is saying something.
3. Indra Nooyi (US)
As head of Pepsico, Nooyi has been battling hard to reverse the trend of falling profits in PepsiCo. Though a major franchise license for a few fast food companies- PespiCo’s profits in the beverage industry has been in trouble for awhile. In response to that Nooyi has debuted new product lines in 2009. A re-launch of the energy drink Propel will advance Nooyi’s plan to offer healthy alternatives to the competitions’ products to serve consumer demand.
2. Sheila Bair (US)
The FDIC chairman fought every step of the way to achieve her agenda, often against better equipped Washington insiders. She succeeded where few thought she would. Bair’s FDIC has taken control of more banks this last year alone than in the previous two. She is still fighting for more power fir her agency and less for the Federal Reserve. The way she fights, she just might do it.
1. Angela Merkel (Germany)
The current Chancellor of Germany, became the second woman in history to chair the G8, Margaret Thatcher being the first. Merkel was also President of the European Council. She pivotal in the negotiation of the Treaty of Lisbon and the Berlin Declaration as an advocate of moderation and control. In domestic policy, health care reform and problems concerning future energy development have thus far been major issues of her administration. Merkel is the first female Chancellor of Germany. From 2006 to 2009, Forbes Magazine has named her the most powerful woman in the world.