Brenda Barnes Research Paper

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CEO of Sara Lee Brenda C. Barnes “I set a high bar for myself and others, and I think I help people get over that bar. That’s my job” (USA today). Upon being hired by Sara Lee in July 2004 as president and then promoted to CEO a year later, she became one of eight women to head a Fortune 500 company. Later she would rank as number 29 in Forbes list of The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women in 2009. Brenda Barnes has led the way for women in corporate America. Barnes is an educator, business woman and a devoted mother. Although the majority of her career (1976 – 96) was with Pepsi Co, she also served as board members for major corporations such as New York Times and Stables. In an interview with Del Jones USA Today, Barnes says “definitely…show more content…
Her parents instilled strong values, humbleness, and the ability to listen to people and value what they are saying. These human skills attributes layer the foundation and is reflected in the ethical values Barnes has sustained throughout her career. Brenda Barnes received “her undergraduate degree in business and economics from Rockford, Illinois’ Augustana College in 1975… also entered Loyola University, from which she graduated with her M.B.A in 1978” ( In 1976, she landed a job as a business manager for Wilson Sporting Goods formerly a division of Pepsi. With determination she strived to succeed in a male dominated company and achieved her goal of becoming head of sales. Barnes continued to climb the corporate ladder and transitioned into different departments within Pepsi. “In 1996, Barnes was named president and chief executive officer of Pepsi-Cola North…show more content…
Customers, consumers and geographies were considered in restructuring the operations to better serve the ever-changing global marketplace. She has led the company through a restructuring, which cut unprofitable operations, jobs and divisions to focus on its core food business. Sara Lee’s shown increasing profits in early 2007 which indicated the plan was working for forward progress. She told Jones of USA Today, “I would love to demonstrate to the world that a woman can run a company well.” References: USA TODAY. (2010, August 09). Sara Lee CEO Brenda Barnes steps down after stroke in May. Retrieved January 24, 2012, from Jones,D. (2006, February 20). USATODAY: Barnes sets the bar high, while using low-key style. Retrieved January 25, 2012, from Advameg, Inc. (2012). Encyclopedia of World Biography. Retrieved January 25,2012, from

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