Rometty at the 2011 Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit
|Born||Virginia Marie Nicosia
July 29, 1957
Chicago, Illinois, United States
|Education||Northwestern University (B.S.)|
|Occupation||Chairwoman, President and CEO of IBM|
|Salary||US$19.3 million (2014)|
|Predecessor||Samuel J. Palmisano|
Virginia Marie "Ginni" Rometty (born July 29, 1957) is an American business executive. She is the current Chairwoman, President and CEO of IBM, and the first woman to head the company. Prior to becoming president and CEO in January 2012, she held the positions of Senior Vice President and Group Executive for Sales, Marketing, and Strategy at IBM. She joined IBM as a systems engineer in its Detroit office in 1981.
She has been named in Fortune magazine's "50 Most Powerful Women in Business" for ten consecutive years, ranking #1 in 2012, 2013 and 2014. She has received similar awards from various publications and criticism from others.
Early life and education
Rometty graduated from the Robert R. McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science at Northwestern University in 1979 with high honors, receiving a bachelor's degree in computer science and electrical engineering. Rometty was a member of the Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority, eventually serving as its president.
After graduation in 1979, Rometty went to work for General Motors Institute; in 1981, she joined IBM as a systems engineer in its Detroit office. She joined IBM's Consulting Group in 1991. In 2002, she "championed the purchase of the big business consulting firm, PricewaterhouseCoopers Consulting, for $3.5 billion." Rometty became senior vice president and group executive for sales, marketing and strategy in 2009 and is "credited with spearheading IBM's growth strategy by getting the company into the cloud computing and analytics businesses. She was also at the helm of readying Watson, the Jeopardy! playing computer, for commercial use."
On October 25, 2011, IBM announced that she was to be the company's next president and CEO, with Sam Palmisano stepping down but retaining his position as chairman. Rometty's appointment marks the first time a woman has been CEO of IBM. Regarding her promotion, Palmisano stated, "Ginni got it because she deserved it... It’s got zero to do with progressive social policies."
On September 26, 2012, IBM announced that Rometty was taking on the added role of chairman of IBM, as Samuel Palmisano prepared to retire at the end of 2012. Rometty commenced her duty as Chairwoman, President and CEO of IBM on October 1, 2012. One of her goals is to focus company efforts on the cloud and cognitive computing systems, such as Watson.
Boards and honors
Rometty serves on the Council on Foreign Relations; the Board of Trustees of her alma mater Northwestern University; the Board of Overseers and Board of Managers of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center; and is a council member at the Latin America Conservation Council, a subsidiary of The Nature Conservancy. She also served on the Board of Directors of AIG from 2006 until 2009.
In 2014, Rometty was featured in the PBS documentary The Boomer List. Also that year, she became the third female member of the Augusta National Golf Club. She has received honorary doctoral degrees from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (2014) and Northwestern University (2015).
In Fortune's September 15, 2015 issue, Rometty ranked 3rd on their Most Powerful Women List.
Rometty is married to Mark Anthony Rometty, a principal investor in the Bam Oil Company. The couple has no children.
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Media related to Ginni Rometty at Wikimedia Commons
Samuel J. Palmisano
|CEOs of IBM