According to Forbes magazine, “A golden age for women entrepreneurs has begun“. Marketplace trends, more financial options and an abundance of women-led companies make 2016 a hot time to strike for females. However, the opportunities women are seeing now in the workplace were not always as clear to them before these 7 women paved the way.
CEO, General Motors
The CEO of General Motors has held down the #5 spot on the Forbes 100 Most Powerful Women list 2 years in a row and doesn’t appear to be slowing down. Mary Barra, a 36 year veteran of GM, is one of the key players credited in GM’s return to prominence after being on the verge of having to recall over 30 million cars two years ago due to faulty ignition switches. The comeback resulted in a 77 percent increase in her compensation package, shooting her total value to $28.6 million.
Founder, Emerson Collective
Don’t be fooled by the name. Laurene Powell-Jobs has carved out quite a name of her own given she is the widow of Apple founder and Billionaire Steve Jobs. Laurene uses her wealth and power to promote social issues, mainly social reform and help disadvantaged students. She is the founder and chair of Emerson Collective and co-founder of College Track. With an estimated worth of almost $18 billion, she is one of the richest women in the world.
President-CEO, GE Business Innovations at General Electric
After overseeing the founding of the ultra-successful live-streaming service, Hulu, Beth Comstock held roles with NBC, CBS and Turner Broadcasting. She currently serves as the President-CEO of GE Business Innovations at General Electric mainly focusing on the development of new businesses. On top of GE, Comstock also sits as a board member to Nike and a Trustee President of Cooper-Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, so there isn’t much she’s not doing these days. .
Founder, Huffington Post
Arianna Huffington has earned her wealth through her innate skill to write. The first thing that comes to mind when you hear her name is probably the Huffington Post, which she founded and serves as the editor-in-chief. However, she has also served as a radio host and authored 15 books, including the best-sellers, “The Sleep: Revolution: Transforming Your, Life, One Night at a Time” and “Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder.”. In 2011, AOL purchased Huffington Post, netting Huffington north of $21 Million.
CEO, Tory Burch
Tory Burch is one of the only women to land on the Power Women, America’s Self Made Women and Billionaires list. When Oprah Winfrey deemed Burch “the next big thing in fashion”, she clearly knew what she was talking about. Burch has turned a small store in Manhattan into a retail empire worth around $3 billion. She has not forgotten her humble beginnings as she started the Tory Burch Capital Program that has dished out around $10 million to women entrepreneurs.
Founder, Epic Systems
The Founder of Epic Systems saw her wealth come in the next wave of healthcare innovations by creating a system to exchange medical records. More than half of the U.S. population currently has information within Epic Systems. The company had around $2 billion in sales in 2015 and plans to expand again in the fall of 2016
Blakely may not be the richest woman on the list, but her story ranks up there with the best of them. Blakely grinded it out as a Disney World ride greeter and door-to-door fax salesperson for a couple years before her big idea came. At age 27, with only $5,000 to her name, she went all in on finding something comfortable and flattering to wear under her slacks. The new line of underwear, called SPANX, now is worth over $250 million.
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