The Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA) is bringing back its second annual list of the 50 Most Powerful Latina women in corporate America. This list gives a new spotlight to Latina women executives and amplifies their exposure across the country. In fact, three of the women on the list joined a corporate board last year.
This year, the nominees for our Most Powerful Latina list nearly doubled, with 15 business leaders joining the list for the first time, including Jessica Alba, acclaimed actress and entrepreneur, at number 10. These 50 Latina executives are running Fortune 500 companies, large private firms, and a few are entrepreneurs leading global companies. The four-criteria used were: the size and importance of the woman’s business in the global economy, the health and direction of the business, the arc of the woman’s career–r?sum? and runway ahead–and their social and cultural influence.
This year’s list of powerful Latina women prioritizes women leading large public companies with significant global operating roles, rather than c-level staff roles. It then ranks Latina women operating large private firms and, finally, entrepreneurs who have successfully scaled their businesses into the middle market.
The accomplishments of these powerful Latinas are significant. The list serves as a platform to continue their legacy and amplify their voices to inspire the next generation of women.
These women have received powerful advice along the way. Read their best advice here.
1. Geisha Williams
CEO and President, PG&E
Courtesy of PG&E
Williams leads one of the largest combined natural gas and electric energy companies in the United States. Based in San Francisco with more than 20,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation’s cleanest energy to nearly 16 million people in Northern and Central California. Williams is the first Latina to ever lead a Fortune 500 company.
Since joining PG&E, Williams has overseen the company’s move to bring nearly 33% of its energy from renewable sources. The power company has also become a leader in renewables integration, grid modernization, and smart-grid technologies, while also achieving the best electric reliability in company history. In Williams’ own words: “In terms of greenhouse-gas emissions, the news is even better. When you add in large hydro and nuclear, nearly 70% of the electricity on PG&E’s grid is now GHG-free–something we’re very proud of.”
2. Grace Puma
Executive Vice President Global Operations, PepsiCo
Courtesy of PepsiCo
As executive vice president of global operations at PepsiCo, Puma directs a broad scope of activities spanning PepsiCo’s $63 billion portfolio that includes Pepsi, Frito-Lay, Quaker Oats, Gatorade, and Tropicana. Under her purview are global procurement, in which she manages more than $25 billion of spending; global manufacturing operations and warehousing, where she drives quality, efficiency and ensures capacity for growth around the world; and global safety and security, where her focus is protecting the welfare of more than 250,000 PepsiCo employees. Before joining PepsiCo in 2010, Puma held leadership positions at United …read more