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Forbes Names Most Powerful Women


October 12, 2010
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Forbes magazine has published its annual list of most powerful women in the world across a spectrum of professions.

Michelle Obama was named most powerful woman, rising 40 places to capture the title this year. Irene Rosenfeld, CEO of Kraft Foods was second, followed by Oprah Winfrey, in third place. Xerox Chief Executive Ursula Burns (picture right) placed 20th on the list this year, down six positions from last year.

HP’s Ann Livermore (HP Enterprise Business) and Cathie Lesjak (HP CFO and most recently interim CEO) fell off the list this year after placing 31st and 32nd, respectively, on the 2009 list. Former HP CEO Carly Fiorina placed 51st this year in her new life as a politician in California.

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Other names of note on the list are Lady Gaga (#7), Beyonce Knowles (#9), Sarah Palin (#16), Angelina Jolie (#21) and Queen Elizabeth II (#41).

To determine the rankings for each year, Forbes weighs the dollar component (company revenues, national budgets or earnings) and in equal part a “buzz” factor, determined by internet traffic.