More Than Half of Forbes 50 Over 50 List Are Black Women

by Xara Aziz

In Forbes’ third annual installment of a list celebrating 50 people over 50 who have dominated their industries, more than half of the recipients are Black women.

From revolutionary astronauts to accomplished entrepreneurs and all in between, these 26 women have defied odds to become the movers and shakers of their generation. Kudos to the winners for continuing to inspire the Black women who will come after you for generations to come! See the full list here and below.

Mimi Alemayehou

Mimi Alemayehou concentrates in capitalizing in Africa, working as a managing partner at Semai Ventures, a consulting firm for businesses in Africa. Bridges has also designed the interiors of Vice President Kamala Harris’ residence and former President Bill Clinton’s New York offices. 

Ertharin Cousin

Ertharin Cousin is a former U.S. ambassador for food security and the past executive director of the U.N. World Food Programme.

Cheryl McKissack Daniel

Cheryl McKissack Daniel is the president and CEO McKissack & McKissack the country’s oldest minority-owned design and construction firm.The company is responsible for projects worth $50 billion.

Viola Davis 

Viola Davis is only the third Black woman to achieve EGOT status by securing an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony Award.

Catherine Coleman Flowers

Catherine Coleman Flowers is an environmental justice advocate working to improve sanitation for communities of color and indigenous people in rural and low-income areas.

Kim Folsom

Kim Folsom is the founder two businesses accompanying the development of small businesses: First Capital Partners and Founders First Community Development Corporation.

Robyn GardenhireRoby

Robyn Gardenhire founded the City Ballet of Los Angeles, an initiative to make ballet education more accessible to students of color and low-income students.

Claudine Gay

Claudine Gay currently serves as Harvard University’s 30th president and the first Black woman to lead the country’s oldest university.

Tracy Gray

Tracy Gray founded The 22 Fund, where she currently serves as managing partner. The venture capital fund is geared towards women and minority entrepreneurs with clean tech-based manufacturing companies.

Tracie D. Hall

Tracie D. Hall, 51, is the the first Black woman to lead the American Library Association as its executive director.

Kim Heirston

Kim Heirston is a thriving art adviser who is the founder and principal of Kim Heirston Art Advisory. She was recruited by Oprah Winfrey to help curate the first momentous sale of entirely female artists’ work: By Women, For Tomorrow’s Women.

Mae Jemison

Mae Jemison became the first Black woman to travel to space in 1992. She is also the founder of 100 Year Starship, which has a mission to making human travel beyond the solar system possible within the next 100 years.

Patti LaBelle 

Patti LaBelle is a Grammy Award-winning artist who has consistently rebranded her image as one of America’s most beloved aunties. She is the founder of Patti’s Good Life, a comfort food brand that is responsible for her infamous Patti LaBelle sweet potato pie.

Dionne Mahaffey

Dionne Mahaffey is the founder and CEO of Culture Greetings, a company known for its diversity in the greeting card industry. Her greeting cards can be found in 9,000 participating Walgreens and Duane Reade stores nationwide

Depelsha McGruder

Ford Foundation, Depelsha McGruder is the vice president, chief operating officer and treasurer at the Ford Foundation and the founder of Moms of Black Boys United.

Karen Nelson

Karen Nelson, a microbiologist, is the chief scientific officer at Thermo Fisher Scientific, a supplier of scientific instruments, software and chemical agents.

JoAnn Price

JoAnn Price is the cofounder of Fairview Capital Partners, which has managed over $10 billion in assets and become one of the largest minority-owned venture capital and private equity investment firms. 

Lacey Robinson

Lacey Robinson is CEO and president of UnboundED, a professional development platform for educators.

Nina Shaw

Nina Shaw is a founding partner of the entertainment law firm Del Shaw Moonves Tanaka Finkelstein & Lezcano. Her clients include Lupita Nyong’o and Jamie Foxx.

Lisa Skeete Tatum

Lisa Skeete Tatum is an entrepreneur and venture capitalist who founded Landit, a career platform connecting companies with diverse candidates.

Faye Wattleton

Faye Wattleton is the first Black woman to serve as president of Planned Parenthood. She currently served as the founder of EeroQ, a quantum computation-focused firm.

Brenda Darden Wilkerson

Brenda Darden Wilkerson serves as the president and CEO of, a nonprofit organization working to ensure that “the people who imagine and build technology mirror the people and societies for whom they build it.”

Verna Williams

Verna Williams is a former professor and dean at the University of Cincinnati Law School who now serves as the CEO of Equal Justice Works, which secures funding and creates avenues for law students and graduates pursuing careers in public interest and the equal justice industries.

Related Posts

Crown App