Women of Power: 8 Female Executives Who Attended Ivy League Schools

In Black Enterprise’s February issue, we honored the 50 Most Powerful Women in Corporate America who are responsible for running some of the nation’s largest organizations.

With impressive resumes and years of experience within their industry, many of these power women used the lessons and skills they learned at their prestigious university to successfully push past the glass ceiling and climb the corporate ladder. From careers in media, to finance and retail, the following are some power women who got their start at an Ivy League college.


Glenda G. McNeal, American Express:

Glenda G. McNeal received a Masters of Business Administration degree in finance from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Coming to American Express in 1989, McNeal has worked her way up the ranks and now serves as the company’s Executive Vice President and General Manager of the Global Client Group in Merchant Services Americas.





Tamara Franklin, Scripps Networks Interactive:

Stepping into her position as Executive Vice President of Digital at Scripps Networks Interactive in January 2014, Franklin earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Yale University and an MBA from Harvard University.








Susan Somersille Johnson, SunTrust Banks, Inc.:

Serving as Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at SunTrust Banks, Inc., Johnson earned a bachelor’s degree in Engineering Sciences from Harvard University, while being cross-registered at MIT. She is also a graduate of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania where she earned an MBA in finance.





0ebra Lee, BET Networks:

Overseeing one of the most influential multiplatform media companies in the world, Debra Lee is Chairman and CEO of BET Networks. She earned a bachelor’s degree in political science with an emphasis in Asian politics from Brown University and earned her juris doctorate at Harvard Law School, while simultaneously earning a master’s degree in public policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government.





Melissa E. James, Morgan Stanley:

Joining Morgan Stanley more than 25 years ago, James is Managing Director at the firm and runs the company’s loan products group. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Yale and an MBA from Harvard.





Carla Harris, Morgan Stanley:

Harris started her career at Morgan Stanley in 1987 in the Mergers & Acquisitions department and since then has worked her way up to Vice Chairman, Global Wealth Management, Managing Director and Senior Client Advisor of the the firm. She earned an MBA, Second Year Honors and AB in economics from Harvard University.




Bernice Clark, Macy’s Inc.:

Since April 2009, Clark has served as Senior Vice President of Marketing for Macy’s Inc. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Barnard College/Columbia University with a double major in sociology and program in the arts/piano performance. She later went on to earn an MBA in marketing from New York University.





Lori Dickerson Fouch, Prudential Group Insurance:

With more than 20 years of experience in the insurance industry, Fouch is the CEO of the Group Insurance business for Prudential Financial, Inc. She holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Princeton University and an MBA from Harvard University.