How the power players do it - by Fortune senior editor at large Patricia Sellers

Tory Burch talks about her greatest mentor

May 27, 2010: 12:32 PM ET

by Patricia Sellers

This year's Most Powerful Women "Evening With..." dinner in New York featured the theme "Building a Legacy" and my conversation with two women who have done exactly that:  CNN vet Christiane Amanpour and former Xerox (XRX) chairman and CEO Anne Mulcahy. Another highlight of the evening was the mentor tributes: Fortune MPWomen talked about the greatest mentor who helped lead them to success.

Fashion entrepreneur Tory Burch did one of the mentor tributes. After working in PR for Ralph Lauren (RL) and Vera Wang, she started Tory Burch LLC in 2004 as a lifestyle concept, spanning ready-to-wear, handbags, shoes, and jewelry. Today, her products are sold in 29 freestanding Tory Burch boutiques in the U.S. and Asia, on the web at, and at 550 department and specialty stores worldwide. Her business has grown remarkably -- Mexico-based Tresalia Capital invested at a company valuation of $600 million last summer. And while Burch doesn't like to flaunt the fact that she's building her company to serve as a platform do good in the world, it's the truth. She launched the Tory Burch Foundation last year to provide economic opportunities to women and their families in the U.S.

You can read Burch's Guest Post about her foundation here. And here is her tribute--to an unusual mentor -- at Fortune's MPWomen dinner last Thursday.

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About This Author
Pattie Sellers
Pattie Sellers
Senior Editor at Large, Fortune
Executive Director of MPW/Live Content, Time Inc.

Pattie Sellers has written more than 20 Fortune cover stories including "Marissa Mayer: Ready to Rumble at Yahoo," "Muhtar Kent's New Coke," "Oprah's Next Act", "The $100 Billion Woman" (Melinda Gates), and "Gone with the Wind" (Ted Turner). She co-founded Fortune Most Powerful Women and oversees the Fortune MPW Summit, the preeminent gathering of women leaders in business and beyond—and programs such as Fortune MPW Entrepreneurs and the Fortune-U.S. State Department Global Women Leaders Mentoring Partnership. Pattie also develops Live Content across Time Inc. Her blog, Postcards, is about how power players lead and navigate their careers. Pattie won Time Inc.'s prestigious MVP award for her performance in 2012.

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MPWomen go Global

The Fortune/U.S. State Department Global Women Leaders Mentoring Partnership brings rising-star women from countries around the world to the U.S. for three-week mentorships with participants of the annual Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit - among them Ursula Burns of Xerox, Laura Lang of Time Inc., Marissa Mayer of Yahoo, and Tory Burch.

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