The 24 Most Powerful Female Executives and Their Net Worths
The business world is a traditionally male-dominated space, but some women have managed to break through the glass ceiling and rise to the position of CEO. The 2017 Fortune 500 list includes just 32 female CEOs, but these women aren’t allowing their minority status to hold them back.
From tech companies to financial firms, these women are holding court at the top of the org chart, and their influence is paving the way for other females to follow in their footsteps. Get inspired by these powerhouse women executives and their seriously impressive net worths.
(By Laura Woods)
Abigail Johnson Net Worth: $15.3 Billion
Abigail Johnson, who is among the richest women in history, represents the third generation of her family at Fidelity as the first woman to helm the firm. The married mother of two was named Fidelity CEO in 2014 and chairman in 2016 when her father retired.
The Harvard MBA owns an estimated 24 percent of the firm, which has more than $2.1 trillion in total managed assets as of Aug. 12, 2017. Johnson worked her way to the top at Fidelity -- she started with a college summer job in customer service and her first full-time position at the firm was an entry-level research analyst.
Meg Whitman Net Worth: $2.8 Billion
Currently, the CEO of Hewlett Packard Enterprise and chairman of HP Inc., the super-wealthy executive Meg Whitman earned $35.6 million in total compensation during fiscal year 2016, according to Bloomberg. A longtime Silicon Valley power player, she oversaw the company’s split into two distinct entities in 2015 -- Hewlett Packard Enterprise and HP Inc.
The former SurveyMonkey and current Proctor & Gamble board member is best known for growing eBay from $4 million in annual sales when she became CEO in 1998 to $8 billion when she stepped down in 2008. Also an author, the married mother of two wrote “The Power of Many: Values for Success in Business and in Life.”
Sheryl Sandberg Net Worth: $1.61 Billion
It’s true that Sheryl Sandberg isn’t a CEO, but Facebook’s chief operating officer has more than earned a spot on the list. The mother of two earned nearly $18.7 million from the social network in 2015, according to Facebook’s 2016 proxy statement.
Not only did she write The New York Times best-selling books, Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead and Option B, she used both to start nonprofits. Sandberg’s LeanIn.Org Foundation works to help women across the globe achieve their dreams. Inspired by her husband’s sudden death in 2015, her Option B nonprofit helps people stay strong when faced with adversity.
Safra A. Catz Net Worth: $670 Million
Larry Ellison left big shoes to fill at Oracle, but Safra A. Catz can handle it. Along with co-CEO Mark Hurd, she has steered the company to larger-than-expected profits so far in 2017, which has kept stock prices healthy. Catz is one of the highest-paid female executives with a 2016 salary of $40.9 million, according to Forbes.
The married mother of two is known for leading Oracle’s acquisition strategy and has helped close more than 100 acquisitions since 2005. Previously the company’s chief financial officer, she’s been with Oracle for 18 years, starting in 1999 when she joined as a senior vice president.
Marissa Mayer Net Worth: $540 Million
Since resigning from her job as Yahoo CEO in June 2017, Marissa Mayer has been out of work, but she’s likely not hurting for cash. She became CEO of the web services provider in 2012, and earned a salary of more than $900,000 per week, totaling more than $239 million, according to The New York Times.
Her biggest move as CEO was brokering a deal for Verizon to purchase Yahoo for $4.48 billion, which culminated with her planned departure -- and a $23 million severance package. The married mother of three was also one of Google’s first employees, a status that bolstered her ascent to the top.
Indra Nooyi Net Worth: $80 Million
After joining PepsiCo in 1994, Indra Nooyi climbed the ranks to the top, earning her current titles of president and CEO in 2006 and chairman in 2007. In 2016, the married mother of two daughters received a total compensation of $29.8 million, according to CNN.
Realizing that carbonated beverages are slowly going out of style, the forward-thinking CEO has declared Pepsi no longer a soda company and is working to offer healthier alternatives. When she’s not focused on PepsiCo, Nooyi stays busy serving on various boards, including the U.S.-India Business Council, The Consumer Goods Forum and Catalyst. The Obama Administration also appointed her to the U.S.-India CEO Forum.
PepsiCo announced on Aug. 6, 2018, that Nooyi will step down from her position after 24 years with the company, and after being its first woman CEO. She will be replaced by Ramon Laguarta, who has overseen global operations and public policy for the company.
Irene Rosenfeld Net Worth: $80 Million
You might not be familiar with the name Mondelez International -- led by chairman and CEO Irene Rosenfeld, the global snacking business owns big brands like Oreo, Nabisco and Trident gum. Previously the chairman and CEO of Kraft Foods, Rosenfeld led the charge to split the company into two separate entities -- Kraft Foods and Mondelez International -- in 2012.
The married mother of two earned $16.7 million in total compensation for 2016, according to Reuters. When she’s not making billion-dollar decisions, Rosenfeld donates her time to the Economic Club of Chicago, the Board of Consumer Goods Forum and The Business Council.
Ginni Rometty Net Worth: $45 Million
After 30 years with the company, Ginni Rometty was named IBM’s first female CEO in 2011. Currently serving as CEO, president and chairman, her rise to the top included various leadership positions and many significant accomplishments, including spearheading IBM’s 2002 acquisition of PricewaterhouseCoopers Consulting.
At IBM’s 2017 annual meeting, shareholders voted to raise Rometty’s salary more than 60 percent to $33 million, reported CNBC. Rometty met her husband while interning at GM in college and married him three years later, according to the Financial Times. She serves on several boards, including the Council on Foreign Relations.
Mary T. Barra Net Worth: Unknown
Not only is Mary T. Barra the first female CEO of General Motors, she’s the first woman to lead a company in the automotive industry. She started with GM as a co-op student in 1980 and rose through the ranks in various leadership positions until she became CEO in 2014 and chairman in 2016.
Now the highest-paid auto CEO in the world, she earned $22.6 million in 2016, according to CNN. In her free time, the married mother of two serves on several boards, including two for her alma mater -- the Stanford University Board of Trustees and the Stanford GSB Advisory Council.
Phebe Novakovic Net Worth: Unknown
In 2013, Phebe Novakovic was named CEO of global aerospace and defense company General Dynamics. She joined the company in 2001 but was previously employed by the federal government, which included stints with the CIA, the U.S. Department of Defense and the Office of Management and Budget.
A married mother of three, Novakovic is cashing in as CEO. She earned $21.2 million in 2016, according to The New York Times, and Forbes reported her 2015 salary at $20.4 million. Both General Dynamics and Novakovic like to stay out of the public eye, but stock has grown 100 percent under her leadership, so her impact is evident.
Oprah Winfrey Net Worth: $2.8 Billion
After hosting her eponymous talk show for 25 seasons, Oprah Winfrey took her television career to the next level by launching her network. The media mogul debuted OWN: The Oprah Winfrey Network on Jan. 1, 2011.
She appointed herself CEO in July 2011 and is slated to retain her role through at least 2025. The busy power woman is also an actress, who recently starred in the 2018 film “A Wrinkle in Time.”
Magdalena Martullo-Blocher Net Worth: $5.2 Billion
She previously held management positions at Johnson & Johnson and Swiss beverage maker Rivella, but Magdalena Martullo-Blocher stepped into the role of CEO at Ems-Chemie in 2004. She took the reins of the Swiss polymer and chemical manufacturer from her father, and Martullo-Blocher and her sister Rahel are currently the company's majority shareholders.
The mother of three, who is worth a whopping $5.2 billion according to Forbes, was also elected to the Swiss parliament in 2015, and currently serves on the National Council.
Denise Coates Net Worth: $5 Billion
Along with her brother John, Denise Coates is co-CEO of BET365, one of the largest online gambling companies in the world. The U.K.-based billionaire purchased the company's domain in 2000 and launched the site in 2001.
She earned approximately $278.3 million in the fiscal year 2017, making the mother of five the highest-paid boss in the U.K., according to the Daily Mail. Coates owns roughly half of the privately-held company.
Angela Leong Net Worth: $3.7 Billion
Angela Leong is the largest individual shareholder of casino company SJM Holdings. The mother of five is also the company's managing director.
She resides in Hong Kong and has served double duty as an elected Macau legislator since 2005. Leong was re-elected for her fourth term in 2017.
Anne Wojcicki Net Worth: $1 Billion
In 2006, Anne Wojcicki co-founded DNA-testing service 23andMe. The Yale alum has served as the company's CEO since inception.
President of Google Sergey Brin's ex-wife -- they share two children -- is also the founder and principle of commercial real estate firm Los Altos Community Investments. Wojcicki was inspired to launch the company after she opened downtown Los Altos, Calif. family-friendly Bumble Restaurant in 2011.
Jane Goldman Net Worth: $3.1 Billion
Jane Goldman, the youngest daughter of late-New York City real estate scion Sol Goldman, is the only female billionaire in the U.S. leading a real estate firm, according to Forbes. She runs the day-to-day operations at Solil Management, which she co-owns with her three siblings.
The privately-held firm run by the mother of two controls the more than $6 billion real estate empire managed by the company, according to The Real Deal, a real estate site.
Zhang Xin Net Worth: $3.6 Billion
Along with husband Pan Shiyi, Zhang Xin co-founded real estate firm Soho China in 1995. The mother of two serves as CEO of the company, which develops commercial properties in Beijing and Shanghai.
The business she co-founded has been listed on the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong since 2007, and its $1.9 billion IPO is the largest in history for an Asian commercial real estate firm, according to the company's website.
Miuccia Prada Net Worth: $3.2 Billion
She doesn't just have the fashionable last name, Miuccia Prada is also co-CEO of the luxury brand. In addition to her role as executive director, she joined her husband Patrizio Bertelli at the helm of the company in 2014.
She has a 28 percent stake in the family fashion business she inherited in 1977, along with her two siblings.
Anita Zucker Net Worth: $3.6 Billion
Anita Zucker is the chairman and CEO of InterTech Group, a private, family-owned chemicals manufacturer based in Charleston, S.C. The business was founded by her late husband, but he passed away in 2008, and the mother of three has been running it since.
She's also owned the South Carolina Stingrays, a minor league hockey team, since 1994.
Jessica Alba Net Worth: $340 Million
In addition to being a famous actress, Jessica Alba is a mogul who co-founded The Honest Company, which makes non-toxic household goods. Launched in 2011, the company started by the mom of three company was valued at $1.7 billion in 2015.
She's not the company's CEO, but according to its website, she guides strategy, creative marking and product innovation. Alba also somehow finds time to fit acting into her schedule, including "El Camino Christmas," released in 2017.
Judy Faulkner Net Worth: $3.7 Billion
In 1979, Judy Faulkner founded medical-record software provider Epic Systems in her basement. Today, approximately 190 million patients have an up-to-date record in Epic, according to the company website.
Faulkner's company is used by hospitals, academic centers and patients themselves. Epic realized $2.5 billion in sales in 2016, reported Forbes.
Susan Wojcicki Net Worth: $400 Million
Susan Wojcicki has been the CEO of YouTube since 2014. A Harvard alum, she was Google's 16th employee and served as the company's first marketing manager.
The mother of five was Google's senior vice president of Adwords and AdSense when she left the company after nearly 15 years in 2014 to pursue her current role. If you're wondering, yes, she's the older sister of 23andMe CEO Anne Wojcicki.
Jane Lauder Net Worth: $2.5 Billion
No doubt, Jane Lauder's cosmetics-mogul grandmother Estee would be very proud of her career choice. After graduating from Stanford, she joined the family business in 1996 and was promoted to her current role as the global brand president of Clinique in 2014, which is owned by the company.
She's served on the Estee Lauder Companies' board of directors since 2009.
Sara Blakely Net Worth: $1.0 Billion
In 1998, Sara Blakely didn't have the right undergarment to wear to a party, so she made her own. This inspired her to launch Spanx, which she started with just $5,000.
Blakely joined the billionaire's club in 2012 and was the youngest self-made woman to make Forbes' coveted World's Billionaires list that year. She stepped down as CEO in February 2014 but returned to the helm two years later.