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Women in Business – Who are some of the world’s most influential women?

By LiveWell Community

Women. What a long way we have come from being told our role in society was to take care of a home. Oh wait, most of us do still take care of a home, however now, we are also running incredibly successful businesses or working full time jobs. Granted, in some backwards industries, we are still fighting for equal pay, but most companies fit the bill. Women are paving the way in all industries from pharmaceutical to politics, and there is no stopping us. It has taken me a while and several conversations with peers to establish that many influential women weren’t “household names”. Why not? Why do we not know the ins and outs of Christine Lagarde or Rosalind Brewer, the former chief operating officer of Starbucks and is currently the only Black woman running an S&P 500 company? Sure, we know little bits about Jeff Bezos but what do we know about MacKenzie Scott? The first thing anyone ever says is “Is that the woman who was married to the Amazon man”. Yes, she was. However, she is also a philanthropist and an author, and donates large sums of money each year to charities. That is the information we need to know about these women, not their marital status.

Of course, there are hundreds of inspiring women we could talk about. And hopefully during Women’s history month we can share a lot of those women with you. There are women such as Malala Yousafzai and Greta Thunberg who are activists fighting for change, challenging world leaders with environmental concerns and female equality in different cultures. There are young and successful business owners starting from scratch like Sophia Amoruso for Nasty Gal and more recently Sam Abrahart for The Mayfair Group. There are sportswomen breaking records and female engineers taking over large companies. These are the women who are shaping our world and inspiring young girls to become the best version of themselves. These are the women we need to be talking about over brunch and sharing on our social media. These women are using their voice without fear on their platform and showing the world that we are deserving and capable of running large, successful, and international companies. Let’s celebrate.

Check out the most dynamic, incredible and inspiring list below, who keep our world spinning on its axis. I’ll leave you with my favourite quote from Maya Angelou’s poem ‘Still, I Rise’: “Does my sassiness offend you?”

Kamala Harris

  • The first women, the first black person and the first South Asian-American to become U.S Vice President.
  • In 2016, Harris was the first Indian American woman to be elected to the United States Senate.

 

Emma Walmsley

  • Became CEO of GlaxoSmithKline in April of 2017, making her the first woman to run a major pharmaceutical company.
  • Before joining GSK, Walmsley had a 17-year career at beauty giant L'Oreal.

 

MacKenzie Scott

  • Published two novels
  • She signed the Giving Pledge, promising to give away at least half of her wealth over the course of her lifetime.
  • In 2020, she gave $5.8 billion in gifts to 500 non-profit organisations with no strings attached.

Christine Legarde

  • Became the first woman to head the European Central Bank.
  • From 2011 for 8 years, Lagarde ran the International Monetary Fund.

Özlem Türeci

  • Cofounder and chief medical officer of BioNTech.
  • In 2020, with Pfizer, BioNTech developed the first mRNA Covid vaccine.
  • Also a scientist, immunologist and cancer researcher.

 

By Hollie Warwick

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