64. Meg Whitman: CEO and Political Hopeful

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One of the wealthiest women in the United States is Meg Whitman, Chief Executive Officer of Hewlett-Packard. Whitman is an Ivy League educated individual who is the fourth richest woman in the state of California, and is listed No. 20 on Forbes list of wealthiest women in the United States. She is a graduate of Princeton University, where she earned her Bachelor's Degree in Economics in 1977. After Princeton, Whitman earned her MBA at Harvard Business School in 1979. She originally wanted to study medicine, but changed majors early at Princeton.

Whitman has found success wherever she has worked. She began her career working at Proctor and Gamble before joining the Walt Disney Corporation where she served as vice-president of strategic planning in 1989. She also worked for Stride Rite, and Hasbro Corporations. Her biggest success was during a 10-year period working for eBay.

When Whitman took eBay over in 1998, the online auction, and retail business was doing approximately $4 million in sales annually. When she left the company in 2008, the business had grown to an $8 billion giant. EBay went from employing 30 employees in 1998 to employing more than 15,000 during her tenure as CEO at the company. Whitman won several awards for her work at eBay, and Forbes Magazine placed her in the top five most powerful women in the country.

Whitman is a moderate Republican, who endorsed Mitt Romney's failed presidential campaign in 2008. She ran for governor of California in 2010, but lost to Jerry Brown. She hopes to run for president in the future, and is listed as one of the most likely women to become president of the United States.

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