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OUR Champions

Our Champions are a diverse mix of prominent CEOs and chairs, groundbreaking startup founders, and leading venture capitalists. Their unifying passion? They were the first, refuse to be the last, and share JOURNEY’s commitment to broadening the top of the leadership pyramid.

Jenny Abramson

Founder and Managing Partner, Rethink Impact

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Moving from a Fulbright to BCG to The Washington Post early on, Jenny became CEO of a tech startup and then jumped into venture capital. In 2015, she founded Rethink Impact, now the largest U.S.-based impact fund investing in female leaders using technology to solve the world’s greatest problems. Jenny is on the board of several women-led startups.

Peggy Alford

EVP Global Sales, PayPal

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Peggy’s career path took her from eBay to PayPal to the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, where she was Chief Financial Officer and Head of Operations. She rejoined PayPal in 2019 and quickly moved up to head global sales. Peggy also serves on the boards of Meta Platforms, Inc. (formerly Facebook, Inc.) and Macerich.

Mary Barra

Chair and CEO, General Motors

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Mary began her career at GM in 1980 and rose to CEO in 2014. Adding the Chair position in 2016, she set a goal for GM to be “the most inclusive company in the world.” Mary serves on the board of Walt Disney.

Corie Barry

CEO, Best Buy

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Corie became the youngest female CEO in the Fortune 500 when she moved up from CFO in 2019. She started her career as an auditor at Deloitte & Touche and joined Best Buy in 1999. She is a director of Domino’s Pizza.

Elisa Villanueva Beard

CEO, Teach For America

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Straight out of college, Elisa joined Teach For America as a corps member and taught first and second grade bilingual education in South Phoenix. Hooked on TFA's mission to advance educational equity, she led the non-profit's work in her hometown in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, rose quickly to COO, and became CEO in 2015. Based in Houston, Elisa now oversees a network of more than 65,000 TFA corps members and alumni working in over 300 communities across the U.S.

Rosalind Brewer

CEO, Walgreens Boots Alliance

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After 22 years at Kimberly Clark, Roz moved to Walmart, where she was CEO of Sam’s Club. She was COO and Group President of Starbucks before joining Walgreens as CEO in 2021. In addition to serving on the boards of Walgreens and VillageMD, she chairs the Board of Trustees of Spelman College, her alma mater.

Tory Burch

Executive Chairman and Chief Creative Officer, Tory Burch

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Tory founded her eponymous lifestyle brand in 2004 with a mission to empower women. In 2009, she launched the Tory Burch Foundation to advance women entrepreneurship by providing access to capital, education and digital resources, and tackling stereotypes that hold women back.

Lisa Caputo

EVP of Marketing, Communications and Customer Experience, Travelers

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Lisa honed her skills in media (Walt Disney and CBS) and government (as First Lady Hillary Clinton’s press secretary) before she moved to financial services, first at Citigroup (where she headed global marketing and public affairs) and then at Travelers, where she has been an EVP since 2011. Lisa is on the boards of Best Buy and the Travelers Foundation.

Leanne Caret

Executive Vice President and Senior Advisor, The Boeing Company

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Born in Cocoa Beach, Florida near Kennedy Space Center and growing up with parents who worked for Boeing, Leanne took a career path fitting her family passion. She joined Boeing in 1988 and rose through the ranks of finance and general management all the way to president and CEO of Boeing Defense, Space & Security. Now in a global advisory role at Boeing, she has more time to work on advancing women in STEM. She serves on the boards of Deere & Company, FIRST, and the Kansas State University Foundation.

Rachel ROMER Carlson

Co-Founder and CEO, Guild

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Unlocking opportunity has been Rachel’s passion ever since she was a teenager growing up in Colorado. At Stanford, while pursuing her MBA, she launched her first startup, Student Blueprint. In 2015, she co-founded Guild to mobilize companies to offer education, reskilling and career pathways to American frontline employees. Now, as CEO, Rachel is scaling a fast-growing unicorn.

Amy Chang

Former EVP and General Manager, Cisco Collaboration Technology Group, and Founder and CEO, Accompany

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A former Google exec, Amy built and sold her AI startup, Accompany, to Cisco, where she was on the board and then served as an EVP. Amy is now on the boards of Marqeta, Procter & Gamble, and Walt Disney.

WEI Christianson

Former CEO of China and Co-CEO of Asia Pacific, Morgan Stanley

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Starting her career as a New York lawyer, Wei traveled through roles at the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission, Credit Suisse, Citigroup, and Morgan Stanley, where she led China and co-headed Asia until December 2021. She is on the board of Estee Lauder.

Annette Clayton

CEO & President of North American Operations, Schneider Electric

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An alum of General Motors and Dell, Annette has been in top roles at Schneider Electric since 2011. She chairs the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) and serves on the boards of Duke Energy and NXP Semiconductors.

Alicia boler davis

CEO, Alto Pharmacy

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Alicia joined Alto Pharmacy from Amazon, where she was SVP of Global Customer Fulfillment. Before joining Amazon in 2019, Alicia spent 24 years at General Motors, where she rose from engineer to plant manager to senior jobs in customer experience to EVP of Global Manufacturing and Labor Relations. She serves on the board of General Mills.

Michèle Flournoy

Co-Founder and Managing Partner, WestExec Advisors

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From LA to Harvard to Oxford to the Pentagon, Michèle became the highest-ranking woman in DOD history when she served as Under Secretary of Defense for Policy in the Obama Administration. Now, in addition to heading WestExec Advisors, she chairs the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), a bipartisan think tank she co-founded to develop pragmatic and principled national security policies. Michèle's board roles include Astra, Booz Allen Hamilton, CARE, and The Mission Continues.

Maëlle Gavet

CEO, Techstars

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Maëlle founded three companies before consulting for BCG and then serving as CEO of Ozone.ru, EVP of Operations at The Priceline Group, and COO of Compass. CEO of Techstars since 2021, Maëlle is also on the boards of Meero and Edenred, based in her native France. Her book Trampled by Unicorns: Big Tech's Empathy Problem and How to Fix It came out in 2020.

Margo Georgiadis

CEO-Partner
Flagship Pioneering

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Margo's wide-ranging career has taken her from McKinsey to Discover Financial Services to Groupon to Google (as President of the Americas) to Mattel and Ancestry.com. She served as CEO of the latter two companies and is  now CEO-Partner of Flagship Pioneering and CEO of a stealth startup focused on applying AI and machine learning to fuel innovation in biotech. Margo is on the boards of McDonald's, Applovin, and several startups.

DESIREE GRUBER

Founder and CEO, Full Picture

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After an auspicious start in entertainment PR, Desiree founded Full Picture, a brand communications and consulting company, in 1999. She went on to co-create the hit show Project Runway and co-found DGNL Ventures, which architects deals in media and tech, focusing on women founders. Desiree serves on the board of BeautyHealth. 

Marillyn HEWSON

Former Chairman and CEO, Lockheed Martin

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Marillyn’s journey includes 30 years at Lockheed Martin, where she rose to CEO and headed the company for eight years. She retired as Executive Chairman in 2021. She serves on the boards of Chevron and Johnson & Johnson.

Mellody Hobson

Co-CEO & President, Ariel Investments

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Mellody joined Ariel Investments straight out of Princeton. She became Co-CEO in 2019, and added President and Director roles in 2020. She is Non-Executive Chair of Starbucks, where she has served on the board since 2005. She is also on the board of JPMorgan Chase.

ANGELA HWANG

Group President, Pfizer Biopharmaceuticals Group
Pfizer

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Angela grew up in South Africa during apartheid, earned a BA in Microbiology and Biochemistry at the University of Cape Town, and an MBA from Cornell. She joined Pfizer in 1997 and worked across all geographic regions and therapeutic areas as she rose through marketing, sales, and general management. In 2019, Angela was promoted to Group President of Pfizer's Biopharmaceuticals Group, the company’s commercial arm. Angela is focused on advancing diverse leadership. She is on the board of UPS.

Jenny Johnson

President and CEO, Franklin Templeton

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Jenny was a teenager when she started working at the company her grandfather founded in 1947. Her father built Franklin into a global asset management giant. Rising through a wide variety of roles, including chief data officer, Jenny stepped up to CEO in 2020.

Jenny JUST

Co-Founder and Managing Partner of PEAK6 Investments and Chairwoman of Apex Fintech Solutions

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Jenny grew up in Wisconsin, went to the University of Michigan, co-founded PEAK6 with $1.5 million in seed capital in 1997, and has since built a multibillion-dollar fintech company. Passionate about helping women succeed at every table—from the conference room to the boardroom and beyond—Jenny founded Poker Power to teach women a game that sharpens all sorts of skills related to leadership.

AILEEN LEE

Founder & Managing Partner, Cowboy Ventures

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Following early gigs at Morgan Stanley and Gap and a software startup, Aileen earned her VC chops as a partner at Kleiner Perkins. In 2012, after 13 years there, she left to start Cowboy Ventures. In 2018, Aileen co-founded the non-profit All Raise to connect female founders and funders and advance women in tech.

Susan Lyne

Managing Partner and Co-Founder, BBG Ventures

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Susan led ABC Primetime (where she greenlit Desperate Housewives and Grey’s Anatomy) and then Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Gilt, and AOL’s Brand Group before starting a venture capital firm, BBG Ventures, in 2014. She and her partner, Nisha Dua, invest in women-led startups. Susan is on the board of GoPro.

Indra Nooyi

Former Chairman and CEO, PepsiCo

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Beginning her career at Johnson & Johnson, Indra made stops at BCG, Motorola, and ABB before moving to PepsiCo in 1994 as SVP of Strategic Planning. She became Chair and CEO in 2006 and led Pepsi for 13 years until 2019. Indra serves on the boards of Amazon and Philips.

Dina powell mccormick

Global Head of Sustainability and Inclusive Growth and Sovereign Business, Goldman Sachs

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Following senior roles in the Bush Administration, Dina joined Goldman Sachs in 2007 and led Impact Investing and the Environmental Markets Group. She served as U.S. Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategy in 2017, and returned to Goldman as a partner in investment banking. She is on the firm’s Management Committee.

Ginni Rometty

Former Chairman, President and CEO, IBM

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Ginni’s career journey began as a systems engineer at IBM, took her through global consulting and operating roles, and led to eight years at the helm as Chairman, President and CEO. She retired in 2020 after 39 years at IBM. Ginni co-chairs One Ten and is on the board of JPMorgan Chase.

SONIA SYNGAL

Former CEO, Gap Inc.

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An engineer who began her career at Ford Motor, Sonia moved to Sun Microsystems and then Gap in 2004. She headed Old Navy for four years before stepping up to CEO of Gap Inc. (Old Navy, Gap, Banana Republic, Athleta) in 2020.

Jennifer Tejada

CEO, PagerDuty

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Jenn started her career at Procter & Gamble, moved on to senior roles at several tech companies, and led Keynote Systems before she joined PagerDuty as CEO in 2016. She took PagerDuty public on the NYSE in 2019. Jenn is a director of Estee Lauder and UiPath.

Baroness Shriti Vadera

Chair, Prudential PLC

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Shriti’s journey began in Uganda and took her to India and then the UK, where she started as an investment banker and served as a Minister in the British government. Her global finance expertise led her to board roles at Astra Zeneca, BHP, and SantanderUK, where she served as Chair. She has chaired the Prudential PLC board since 2021.

Kathi Vidal

Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)

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Kathi began her career as an electrical engineer designing aircraft and helicopter systems at General Electric and Lockheed Martin. She quit, went to law school, focused on patent law, and became a top IP litigator and Managing Partner of the Silicon Valley office of Winston & Strawn. Kathi joined the Biden White House in April and now, as Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property, she reports to Secretary Gina Raimondo.

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