Forbes World’s Most Powerful Women 2012

Forbes Ranks The Most Powerful Women

The 2012 List

Article first published as Forbes World’s Most Powerful Women 2012 on Technorati.

Another year, another list, but the names still pretty much the same… Angela Merkel remains as the most powerful woman in the world according to Forbes. Followed by other politician and business women as Hilary Clinton (#2), Dilma Roussef (#3), Michelle Obama (#7), Christine Lagarde (#8) and Sheryl Sandberg (#10) to fill once again the coveted top ten. Politics remain as the most powerful force in the world, but the media buzz and money that a celebrity brings to the table can surely make you just as powerful as famous, just like Mrs. Oprah Winfrey (#11) proves by switching places from The Forbes 2011 List with the younger woman on the list, Lady Gaga (#14). – The queen monster was the 11th most powerful woman while Winfrey was the 14th.

Having a life-changing year, the incredibly hot Sofia Vergara makes her Woman-Power debut landing the impressive 75th spot on the list while Shakira remains as the most powerful Colombian woman landing the 40th spot right after the most powerful Latin-American woman, Jennifer Lopez (#38).

A lot of changes where seen in the fashion department as the most powerful woman in this industry is Diane Von Furstemberg, who impressively climbed from the 91st spot right to the 33rd, way above last year’s most powerful woman in fashion Gisele Bündchen, who may be the most powerful model year after year, but felt from the 60th place to the 83rd in this list. My favorite woman in the world Anna Wintour (#51) still is very powerful same as the great Miuccia Prada (#67). Proving that fashion is a powerful industry that does not only moves billions of dollars but media attention and has massive impact and influence on everybody… Wintour, DVF and Prada have all climbed some significant positions from last year’s list.

Rankings like this rely on a equation of hard facts, statistics and perceived influence. Forbes calculated its list by looking at money (a company’s market value and revenue), media presence (news hits on Factiva and radio appearances), and impact, or “the extent of their reach across industries and countries”.

An interesting fact is that for evident reasons, former “Today Show” host Ann Curry falls off the list. See the complete list of the World’s Most Powerful Women 2012 after the jump.

Rank Name Age Country Category
1 Angela Merkel

Angela Merkel

Chancellor, Germany

58 Germany Politics
2 Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton

Secretary of State, United States

64 United States Politics
3 Dilma Rousseff

Dilma Rousseff

President, Brazil

64 Brazil Politics
4 Melinda Gates

Melinda Gates

Co-Chair, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

48 United States Humanitarian
5 Jill Abramson

Jill Abramson

Executive Editor, New York Times Co.

58 United States Media
6 Sonia Gandhi

Sonia Gandhi

President, Indian National Congress, India

65 India Politics
7 Michelle Obama

Michelle Obama

First Lady, United States

48 United States Politics
8 Christine Lagarde

Christine Lagarde

Managing Director, International Monetary Fund

56 France Humanitarian
9 Janet Napolitano

Janet Napolitano

Secretary, Department of Homeland Security, United States

54 United States Politics
10 Sheryl Sandberg

Sheryl Sandberg

COO, Facebook

42 United States Technology
11 Oprah Winfrey

Oprah Winfrey

Entrepreneur, Personality

58 United States Celebrity
12 Indra Nooyi

Indra Nooyi

Chairman and CEO, PepsiCo

56 United States Business
13 Irene Rosenfeld

Irene Rosenfeld

Chairman and CEO, Kraft Foods

59 United States Business
14 Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga

Musician, Philanthropist

26 United States Celebrity
15 Virginia Rometty

Virginia Rometty

President and CEO, IBM

54 United States Technology
16 Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner

Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner

President, Argentina

59 Argentina Politics
17 Ursula Burns

Ursula Burns

Chairman and CEO, Xerox

53 United States Technology
18 Meg Whitman

Meg Whitman

CEO, Hewlett-Packard

56 United States Technology
19 Aung San Suu Kyi

Aung San Suu Kyi

Chair and Parliamentarian, National League for Democracy, Burma

67 Burma Politics
20 Maria das Graças Silva Foster

Maria das Graças Silva Foster

CEO, Petrobras-Petróleo Brasil

58 Brazil Business
21 Marissa Mayer

Marissa Mayer

CEO, Yahoo

37 United States Technology
22 Anne Sweeney

Anne Sweeney

Co-Chair, Disney Media Networks, and President, Disney/ABC Television Group, Walt Disney

54 United States Media
23 Diane Sawyer

Diane Sawyer

Anchor of World News, ABC, Walt Disney

66 United States Media
24 Angela Braly

Angela Braly

CEO, WellPoint

51 United States Business
25 Susan Wojcicki

Susan Wojcicki

Senior Vice President, Google

44 United States Technology
26 Queen Elizabeth II

Queen Elizabeth II

Monarch, United Kingdom

86 United Kingdom Politics
27 Julia Gillard

Julia Gillard

Prime Minister, Australia

50 Australia Politics
28 Nancy Pelosi

Nancy Pelosi

Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, United States

72 United States Politics
29 Arianna Huffington

Arianna Huffington

Editor-In-Chief, Huffington Post Media Group, AOL

62 United States Media
30 Yingluck Shinawatra

Yingluck Shinawatra

Prime Minister, Thailand

45 Thailand Politics
31 Kathleen Sebelius

Kathleen Sebelius

Secretary, Department of Health and Human Service, United States

64 United States Politics
32 Beyonce Knowles

Beyonce Knowles

Actress, Entrepreneur, Musician

30 United States Celebrity
33 Diane Von Furstenberg

Diane Von Furstenberg

Owner, Fashion Designer, Diane von Furstenberg Studio, L.P.

65 United States Business
34 Helen Clark

Helen Clark

Administrator, U.N. Development Programme

62 New Zealand Humanitarian
35 Georgina Rinehart

Georgina Rinehart

Executive Chairman, Hancock Prospecting

58 Australia Billionaire
36 Amy Pascal

Amy Pascal

Co-Chairman, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Sony

54 United States Media
37 Margaret Chan

Margaret Chan

Director-General, World Health Organization

65 China Humanitarian
38 Jennifer Lopez

Jennifer Lopez

Actress, Musician, Personality, Philanthropist

43 United States Celebrity
39 Sheri McCoy

Sheri McCoy

CEO, Avon Products

53 United States Business
40 Shakira


Musician, Personality, Philanthropist

35 Colombia Celebrity
41 Mary Barra

Mary Barra

SVP, Global Product Development, General Motors

50 United States Business
42 Zhang Xin & family

Zhang Xin & family

Cofounder, CEO, Soho China Ltd.

46 China Business
43 Alice Walton

Alice Walton

Chairman, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art

62 United States Billionaire
44 Laura Lang

Laura Lang

CEO, Time Inc., Time Warner

56 United States Media
45 Angela Ahrendts

Angela Ahrendts

CEO, Burberry Group

52 United States Business
46 Sue Naegle

Sue Naegle

President, HBO Entertainment, Time Warner Cable

43 United States Media
47 Ellen DeGeneres

Ellen DeGeneres

Comedian, Personality, Philanthropist

54 United States Celebrity
48 Safra Catz

Safra Catz

President, CFO, Oracle

50 United States Technology
49 Laurene Powell Jobs & family

Laurene Powell Jobs & family

Founder and Chair, Emerson Collective

48 United States Billionaire
50 Rosalind Brewer

Rosalind Brewer

President and CEO, Sam’s Club, Wal-Mart Stores

49 United States Business
51 Anna Wintour

Anna Wintour

Editor-in-Chief, Vogue, Conde Nast Publications, Inc.

62 United States Media
52 Helene Gayle

Helene Gayle

President, CEO, CARE

57 United States Humanitarian
53 Christiane Amanpour

Christiane Amanpour

Chief International Correspondent, CNN, Time Warner

54 United States Media
54 Rosalia Mera

Rosalia Mera

Investor, Philanthropist

68 Spain Billionaire
55 Cynthia Carroll

Cynthia Carroll

CEO, Anglo American

55 United States Business
56 Cher Wang

Cher Wang

Co-founder and Chair, HTC

53 Taiwan Technology
57 Abigail Johnson

Abigail Johnson

President, Fidelity Personal, Workplace and Institutional Services, Fidelity Investments

50 United States Business
58 Padmasree Warrior

Padmasree Warrior

Chief Technology and Strategy Officer, Cisco Systems

51 India Technology
59 Chanda Kochhar

Chanda Kochhar

Managing Director and CEO, ICICI Bank

50 India Business
60 Gail Kelly

Gail Kelly

CEO, Westpac Banking Group

56 Australia Business
61 Margaret Hamburg

Margaret Hamburg

Commissioner, Food and Drug Administration, United States

57 United States Politics
62 Ellen Kullman

Ellen Kullman

Chairman and CEO, EI du Pont de Nemours

56 United States Business
63 Drew Gilpin Faust

Drew Gilpin Faust

President, Harvard University

64 United States Humanitarian
64 Shari Arison

Shari Arison

Investor, Philanthropist

54 Israel Billionaire
65 Mary Schapiro

Mary Schapiro

Chair, Securities and Exchange Commission, United States

57 United States Politics
66 Angelina Jolie

Angelina Jolie

Actress, Philanthropist

37 United States Celebrity
67 Miuccia Prada

Miuccia Prada

Owner, Fashion Designer, Prada

63 Italy Business
68 Carol Meyrowitz

Carol Meyrowitz


58 United States Business
69 Ertharin Cousin

Ertharin Cousin

Executive Director, World Food Programme, United Nations

55 United States Humanitarian
70 Sue Gardner

Sue Gardner

Executive Director, WikiMedia Foundation

45 Canada Technology
71 Joyce Banda

Joyce Banda

President, Malawi

62 Malawi Politics
72 Sri Mulyani Indrawati

Sri Mulyani Indrawati

Managing Director, World Bank

49 Indonesia Humanitarian
73 Bonnie Hammer

Bonnie Hammer

Chairman, Cable Entertainment and Cable Studios, NBCUniversal, Comcast

62 United States Media
74 Chua Sock Koong

Chua Sock Koong

Group CEO, SingTel

53 Singapore Technology
75 Sofia Vergara

Sofia Vergara

Actress, Entrepreneur

40 Colombia Celebrity
76 Ho Ching

Ho Ching

CEO, Temasek

59 Singapore Business
77 Tina Brown

Tina Brown

Editor-in-Chief, The Daily Beast and Newsweek, IAC/InterActiveCorp.

58 United States Media
78 J.K. Rowling

J.K. Rowling


47 United Kingdom Celebrity
79 Chan Laiwa & family

Chan Laiwa & family


71 China Billionaire
80 Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw

Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw

Founder, Chair, Biocon Ltd.

59 India Technology
81 Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

Minister of Finance, Nigeria

58 Nigeria Politics
82 Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

President, Liberia

73 Liberia Politics
83 Gisele Bundchen

Gisele Bundchen

Entrepreneur, Philanthropist, Supermodel

32 Brazil Celebrity
84 Mary Meeker

Mary Meeker

General Partner, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers

51 United States Technology
85 Shaikha Al-Bahar

Shaikha Al-Bahar

CEO-Kuwait, National Bank of Kuwait

- Kuwait Business
86 Marjorie Scardino

Marjorie Scardino

CEO, Pearson

65 United States Media
87 Solina Chau

Solina Chau

Director, Li Ka Shing Foundation

50 Hong Kong Humanitarian
88 Jan Fields

Jan Fields

President, McDonald’s USA, McDonald’s

57 United States Business
89 Weili Dai

Weili Dai

Co-founder, Marvell Technology Group

50 United States Technology
90 Risa Lavizzo-Mourey

Risa Lavizzo-Mourey

President, CEO, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

57 United States Humanitarian
91 Sun Yafang

Sun Yafang

Chair, Huawei Technologies

56 China Technology
92 Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi

Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi

Minister of Foreign Trade, United Arab Emirates

53 United Arab Emirates Politics
93 Guler Sabanci

Guler Sabanci

Chairman and Managing Director, Sabanci Holding

57 Turkey Business
94 Greta Van Susteren

Greta Van Susteren

Anchor, FOX News, News Corp

58 United States Media
95 Mary Callahan Erdoes

Mary Callahan Erdoes

CEO, J.P. Morgan Asset Management, JPMorgan Chase

45 United States Business
96 Mindy Grossman

Mindy Grossman


54 United States Media
97 Patricia Woertz

Patricia Woertz

Chairman, CEO and President, Archer Daniels Midland

59 United States Business
98 Judith Rodin

Judith Rodin

President, Rockefeller Foundation

67 United States Humanitarian
99 Beth Brooke

Beth Brooke

Global Vice Chair – Public Policy, Ernst & Young

53 United States Business
100 Sheikha Mayassa Al Thani

Sheikha Mayassa Al Thani

Chair, Qatar Museums Authority, Qatar

29 Qatar Humanitarian

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