Mary Barra

Title: CEO
Company: General Motors
Country: USA

The first woman to run a global automaker, Barra oversees more than 212,000 employees in 396 GM facilities on six continents. An electrical engineer who has spent her entire career at GM (gm, +0.20%), the new CEO faces big challenges in the U.S., where market share is at a historical low and profit margins are below Ford’s, and Europe, where GM’s Opel brand has lost billions. But companywide, profits are back, and Barra has the board’s approval to invest to make GM prosper again.