For the ninth consecutive year Forbes has released their power rankings of the most influential women in the world and we wanted to highlight the Latinas that made the prestigious list.
A pair of presidents represent the first two Latinas on the list. Dilma Rousseff, the President of Brazil comes in third. The first female Brazilian President, was also the first woman to become Chief of Staff to the president before that. Rousseff who was once tortured when she was a guerrilla as a young woman, now presides over one of the largest economies in the world.
Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner (16), Argentina’s president, was the first woman to be elected as president and is the widow of former president Nestor Kirchner.
As First Lady of Argentina and later President, she has become a fashion icon for women and a notable advocate for human rights, poverty awareness and health improvement.
Maria das Gracas Silva Foster is the first female oil tycoon (CEO of Petrobras) and hails from Brazil. Since taking over as CEO, Foster has followed in the footsteps of Rousseff, who appointed her and sought to ratchet down politics in the executive suite, according to Reuters.
Jennifer Lopez, 38th on the list, is known as a Latina powerhouse. Though she has ended her time as a judge on American Idol she has a new 3D movie coming out called Dance Again and a collaboration with Enrique Iglesias on tap as well.
Another entertainer comes in at number 40 and it’s the world icon known as Shakira. With escalating rumors that she is pregnant with Barcelona soccer boyfriend Gerard Pique’s baby, Shakira may be taking time to slow down but her philanthropic and charitable efforts are going strong. The Latin Recording Academy named her the 2011 Person Of The Year for her musical talent and philanthropic work.
Rosalia Mera (54), worth an estimated $4.5 billion according to Forbes, is Spain’s richest woman. She dropped out of school at the age of 11 to work as a seamstress, then founded a company with her husband. What company is that? Inditex, the parent company of Zara retail stores.
The current Latina “it girl,” Sofia Vergara comes in at 75th on the list. She is the face of Pepsi, a Modern Family star and recently got engaged to Nick Loeb – so things are definitely good.
Rounding out the Latinas on the list is supermodel Giselle Bundchen. She recently confirmed that she has a baby on the way with Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. The news will probably squash any residual sadness she may be feeling over being bumped down another Forbes list – highest paid couple.
Beyonce and Jay-Z, who made $78 million in 2011, dropped Bundchen and Brady to number two, after they raked in only $72 million.