World’s Most Powerful Women: Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Samia Hassan and Mo Abudu Make the list

by Joseph Omoniyi
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The Director-General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Tanzanian President Samia Hassan, and Nigerian media mogul Mo Abudu have secured places on Forbes’ prestigious 100 Most Powerful Women list for 2023.

Forbes’ 20th annual ranking, released on Tuesday, positions Okonjo-Iweala at the 87th spot, underscoring her significant influence in the global economic landscape. South African businesswoman Mpumi Madisa closely follows at the 88th position. Tanzanian President Samia Hassan has made a notable debut on the list, securing the 93rd position, while Mo Abudu, the dynamic Nigerian media personality, and philanthropist, clinches the 98th spot.

The U.S. business magazine formulated the rankings by considering critical parameters such as financial prowess, media presence, overall impact, and spheres of influence. This methodology highlights the multifaceted nature of power, encompassing not just financial success but also the ability to shape narratives, drive change, and exert influence across diverse domains.

Taking to social media, Okonjo-Iweala expressed her gratitude, stating, “Feel truly honoured to be named one more time as one of the Forbes 100 Most Powerful Women in the World. This will be the 7th time, starting in 2011.” She went on to congratulate all the women on the list, emphasizing their collective efforts to make a positive difference globally. Okonjo-Iweala also extended a special congratulatory note to her younger sister, Mo Abudu, underscoring the significance of having two Nigerian women recognized among the world’s most powerful.

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, the seventh Director-General of the WTO, has been breaking barriers since she assumed office on March 1, 2021. Notably, she is the first woman and the first African to hold this prestigious position. Her inclusion in the Forbes list for the seventh time underscores her consistent influence and leadership on the global stage. Her current term as Director-General is set to conclude on August 31, 2025.

For Tanzanian President Samia Hassan, this is a noteworthy debut on the list, recognizing her impact in steering her country and contributing to broader international conversations.

Media mogul Mo Abudu’s inclusion underscores her prowess in shaping the narrative and influencing public discourse through her work in the media and philanthropy.

The Full List:

1Ursula von der Leyen65BelgiumPolitics & Policy
2Christine Lagarde67GermanyPolitics & Policy
3Kamala Harris59USAPolitics & Policy
4Giorgia Meloni46ItalyPolitics & Policy
5Taylor Swift33USAMedia & Entertainment
6Karen Lynch59USABusiness
7Jane Fraser56USAFinance
8Abigail Johnson61USAFinance
9Mary Barra61USABusiness
10Melinda French Gates           59USAPhilanthropy
11Julie Sweet56USABusiness
12Kristalina Georgieva70USAPolitics & Policy
13MacKenzie Scott53USAPhilanthropy
14Gail Boudreaux63USABusiness
15Emma Walmsley 54The United KingdomBusiness
16Ruth Porat66USATechnology
17Safra Catz62USATechnology
18Ana Patricia Botín63SpainFinance
19Carol Tomé66USABusiness
20Sandy Ran Xu46ChinaBusiness
21Kathryn McLay49USABusiness
22Sarah London43USABusiness
23Amy Hood51USATechnology
24Tarciana Paula Gomes Medeiros45BrazilFinance
25Laurene Powell Jobs & family60USAPhilanthropy
26Catherine MacGregor51FranceBusiness
27Janet Yellen77USAPolitics & Policy
28Gwynne Shotwell60USATechnology
29Phebe Novakovic66USABusiness
30Tsai Ing-wen67TaiwanPolitics & Policy
31Oprah Winfrey69USAMedia & Entertainment
32Nirmala Sitharaman64IndiaPolitics & Policy
33Ho Ching70SingaporeFinance
34Thasunda Brown Duckett50USAFinance
35Marianne Lake, Jennifer Piepszak              USAFinance
36Beyoncé Knowles42USAMedia & Entertainment
37Shari Redstone69USAMedia & Entertainment
38Kathy Warden52USABusiness
39Dana Walden59USAMedia & Entertainment
40Amanda Blanc56The United KingdomBusiness
41Susan Li38USATechnology
42Margherita Della Valle58USABusiness
43Adena Friedman54USAFinance
44Mary Callahan Erdoes56USAFinance
45Lynn Martin47USAFinance
46Sheikh Hasina Wajed76BangladeshPolitics & Policy
47Sri Mulyani Indrawati61IndonesiaPolitics & Policy
48Gina Rinehart69AustraliaBusiness
49Lisa Su54USATechnology
50Vicki Hollub64USABusiness
51Nicke Widyawati55IndonesiaBusiness
52Shemara Wikramanayake61AustraliaFinance
53Tricia Griffith59USABusiness
54Jessica Tan46ChinaBusiness
55Judy Faulkner80USATechnology
56Tokiko Shimizu58JapanFinance
57Donna Langley55USAMedia & Entertainment
58Jennifer Salke59USAMedia & Entertainment
59Wang Laichun56ChinaTechnology
60Roshni Nadar Malhotra42IndiaTechnology
61Jenny Johnson59USAFinance
62Yuriko Koike71JapanPolitics & Policy
63Hana Al RostamaniUnited Arab EmiratesFinance
64Suzanne Scott57USAMedia & Entertainment
65Lynn Good64USABusiness
66Sinead Gorman46The United KingdomBusiness
67Bela Bajaria52USAMedia & Entertainment
68Belén Garijo63GermanyBusiness
69Melanie Kreis52GermanyBusiness
70Soma Mondal60IndiaBusiness
71Paula SantilliMexicoBusiness
72Mette Frederiksen46DenmarkPolitics & Policy
73Joey Wat52ChinaBusiness
74Rihanna35USAMedia & Entertainment
75Linda Thomas-Greenfield71USAPolitics & Policy
76Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw70IndiaBusiness
77Güler Sabanci68TurkeyBusiness
78Trudy Shan Dai47ChinaBusiness
79Debra Crew52The United KingdomBusiness
80Robyn Denholm60AustrailiaBusiness
81Solina Chau61Hong KongPhilanthropy
82Lee Boo-jin53South KoreaBusiness
83Robyn Grew54The United KingdomFinance
84Zuzana Caputova50SlovakiaPolitics & Policy
85Mary Meeker64USAFinance
86Makiko Ono63JapanBusiness
87Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala69NigeriaPolitics & Policy
88Mpumi Madisa44South AfricaBusiness
89Melanie Perkins36AustrailiaBusiness
90Dominique Senequier70FranceFinance
91Raja Easa Al GurgUnited Arab EmiratesBusiness
92Julia Gillard62The United KingdomPhilanthropy
93Samia Suluhu Hassan63TanzaniaPolitics & Policy
94Xiomara Castro64HondurasPolitics & Policy
95Kirsten Green52USAFinance
96Choi Soo-yeon42South KoreaBusiness
97Jenny Lee       51SingaporeFinance
98Mo Abudu59NigeriaMedia & Entertainment
99Mia Mottley58BarbadosPolitics & Policy
100Barbie64USAMedia & Entertainment

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