19 for '19PUBLISHED MAR 1, 2019

Indra Nooyi

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Indra Nooyi

Who: Indra Nooyi

What: Former CEO of PepsiCo

Why: Nooyi changed the food and drink industry during her 24 years at PepsiCo. She noticed that people were ditching their soda cans for kombucha jars, and steered the company in a new direction: healthier drinks and snacks. Investors pushed back. But she didn’t back down. Now, about half of the company’s revenue comes from healthier products (see: this and this). Nooyi was also Pepsi’s first woman and first foreign-born CEO, and one of the few female leaders in corporate America. Her exit from the company highlights how few women hold the reins of major US companies.

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