The Few at the Top

Businesswomen Who Paved New Paths

They forged their own ways to success in their industries.

Cultural expectations of how women are said to behave—motherly, nurturing, calm—clash with the assertive, authoritative characteristics society ascribes to leadership and power. And although women make up most of the population, few climb higher than middle management; women seldom have a set roadmap to the C-suite. Those who make it typically encounter struggles along the way. The women featured below offer a range of viewpoints, skill sets, strategies, and experience—but all have one thing in common: hard work. Their paths are unique and offer different insights into the question, “How did you get to where you are today?”

 

Retail

Karen Katz
CEO and President, Neiman Marcus
The first woman to run Neiman Marcus since Carrie Marcus Neiman’s death in 1953.

Commercial Real Estate

Lucy Billingsley
Partner, Billingsley Co.
Launched Billingsley Co. with her husband, Henry, as joint partners in 1978.

Technology

Anousheh Ansari
Co-Founder and CEO, Prodea Systems
The first female private space explorer and the first astronaut of Iranian descent.

Professional Sports

Charlotte Jones Anderson
Executive VP and Brand Officer, Dallas Cowboys
The first chairman of the NFL Foundation and the first woman to represent club ownership as a leader of a major pro sports league foundation.

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