When Fortune published its first Most Powerful Women in Business list in 1998, there was Carly Fiorina at the top and not a huge amount of power underneath.
Relatively speaking, that is.
That 1998 Fortune MPW list included just two Fortune 500 CEOs: Jill Barad of Mattel (MAT) and Marion Sandler, who was co-chief of Golden West Financial with her husband, Herb. The 2013 Fortune MPW list, released this morning, includes 20 Fortune 500 CEOs. At the top: Ginni Rometty of IBM (IBM).
Fifteen years ago, most of the Fortune MPW were in the consumer packaged goods and media industries. The 2013 list features consumer-products stars--PepsiCo (PEP) chief Indra Nooyi, Mondelez (MDLZ) CEO Irene Rosenfeld and Procter & Gamble's (PG) Mel Healey and Deb Henretta. But women in tech dominate the new rankings. The 2013 top 10 includes five tech execs: Rometty, Facebook's (FB) Sheryl Sandberg (No. 5), Yahoo (YHOO) chief Marissa Mayer (No. 8) and Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) boss Meg Whitman (No. 9).
If you doubt that women overall are gaining power in corporate America, consider: Women run the two largest tech companies in the U.S.: IBM and Hewlett-Packard. Lynn Good, a newcomer to the list, heads Duke Energy (DUK), the biggest U.S. electric utility. And Marillyn Hewson (No. 4) is CEO of the world's largest defense contractor, Lockheed Martin (LMT). The 2013 MPW list includes four women in defense, vs. no defense-industry executives in 1998.
There are lots of moms on the 2013 MPW list (all of the top 10 except Rometty). And in general, Fortune's MPW are getting older. Average age: 53, vs. 48 in 1998. And why are the MPW aging? In part because their businesses are getting bigger: Today's Fortune MPW typically oversee at least $6 billion in sales, vs. $1 billion or so 15 years ago. Experience, as well as size, matters.
And for the first time ever, one woman who has always made Fortune's MPW list dropped off: Oprah Winfrey. Her cable network, OWN, seems to have overcome its startup struggles and is drawing bigger audiences, but the business isn't big enough to put Oprah, No. 50 last year, on the 2013 list.
The Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit packed in famous names and exclusive interviews on Tuesday.
IBM (IBM) CEO Ginni Rometty, No. 1 on the 2012 Most Powerful Women list, did her first interview since taking the CEO job in January.
Kraft Foods CEO Irene Rosenfeld talked strategy on the day she split her business into two new companies.
Former Yahoo (YHOO) CEO Carol Bartz gave advice to new chief Marissa Mayer on reviving the MOREPatricia Sellers - Oct 3, 2012 8:48 AM ET
The biggest news about the 2011 Fortune Most Powerful Women list is that we have a new No. 1: Kraft Foods (KFT) CEO Irene Rosenfeld bumped PepsiCo's (PEP) Indra Nooyi to the No. 2 spot.
But when I went on CNBC this morning to reveal the new rankings, the Squawk Box anchors seemed most interested in who fell off our top 50 Power list. First and foremost to leave the list: MOREPatricia Sellers - Sep 29, 2011 12:09 PM ET
The 2011 Fortune Most Powerful Women list will be announced on September 29. Meantime, a few stars on the 2010 MPW list are on Fortune's Executive Dream Team--a fantasy all-star lineup of managers, selected by Fortune editors with assists from recruiters and other business know-it-alls.
I use the term know-it-all with endearment because the selections, revealed today, are good. The non-executive chair of choice: Anne Mulcahy, the former CEO of Xerox MOREPatricia Sellers - Aug 22, 2011 3:55 PM ET
This is a great summer for powerful women.
There are the obvious victories, like Christine Lagarde grabbing the reigns of the International Monetary Fund after Dominque Strauss-Kahn's tumultuous fall from grace.
And then there are the successes that you won't read about in the tabloids. Two Fortune 500 companies, Sempra Energy (SRE) and Guardian Life, promoted women to CEO this past month--Debra Reed and Deanna Mulligan, respectively. Campbell Soup (CPB), named Denise MOREColleen Leahey, Reporter - Jul 12, 2011 2:30 PM ET
by Patricia Sellers
Delivering a talk on Women and Power in Princeton on Thursday night, I tossed out a term that the crowd really liked: Raise the roof!
As I told the 400 people gathered at the YWCA "Tribute to Women" dinner, the "glass ceiling" concept is out of date--and let's rethink how far corporate women have come.
Not that bias against female managers has gone away--far from it, as I've written right MOREPatricia Sellers - Mar 7, 2011 7:34 AM ET
by Patricia Sellers
Here we are in 2011, and how odd is it that only a dozen Fortune 500 companies have female CEOs?
This despite plenty of evidence that placing women in key positions pays off for investors.
Maybe it's coincidental -- at least it's worth noting -- that two of the Dow 30 companies that delivered the best stock-market gains in 2010 are run by women.
One is Dupont (DD), whose CEO, Ellen MOREPatricia Sellers - Jan 4, 2011 11:07 AM ET
By Patricia Sellers
The 2010 Fortune Most Powerful Women list is out!
You can check out the entire MPWomen package here.
This includes the full ranking of 50 MPWomen in U.S. Business, our D.C. Power List and more.
PepsiCo (PEP) CEO Indra Nooyi is No. 1 on our U.S. list for the fifth year in a row. Kraft Foods' (KFT) Irene Rosenfeld is right behind her, at No. 2.
I went on CNBC's Squawk Box MOREPatricia Sellers - Sep 29, 2010 12:56 PM ET
Rarely does a rebuff from Warren Buffett do so much good. Kraft Foods (KFT) stock rose 4.9% yesterday after the Oracle of Omaha, whose Berkshire Hathaway (BRKA) is Kraft's largest shareholder, voted against an issuance of 370 million shares to help finance a Cadbury (CBY) acquisition. Cadbury fell, on the logic that Buffett, by tightening the leash on Kraft CEO Irene Rosenfeld, is preventing her from sweetening the price for MOREPatricia Sellers - Jan 6, 2010 3:52 PM ET
"At the end of a day the performance of a company like Kraft has everything to do with the quality of the people that we have in the key roles and so I spend most of my time worrying about whether that's the case, making sure...we have the right people in the right places, that they have the resources that they need to get the job done."
-- Kraft (KFT) CEO MOREJessica Shambora, Writer-Reporter - May 5, 2009 6:57 PM ET
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