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She is a passionate, articulate advocate for problem-solving, innovation, and effective leadership. Her mission is to inspire, equip and connect individuals and teams to seize opportunities, face challenges, and accelerate impact in their communities and places of work. She knows that everyone has more potential than they realize, that those closest to the problem understand the problem best, and that leading to unlock the potential in others and actually solve problems can result in both progress and joy.
In addition to her regular speeches to students, businesses and non-profits, she is the founder and Chairman of Carly Fiorina Enterprises, and of Unlocking Potential, a non-profit organization that invests in human potential by supporting local leaders who are solving problems in their communities and places of work; equipping them with the behaviors, characteristics, disciplines and tools to increase their leadership and problem-solving capacity. On By Example, an upcoming podcast (currently in production), Carly and her team will use the experiences, stories and lessons from innovators and problem-solvers to teach practical, real-world solutions to challenges many listeners face.
She started out as a secretary for a 9-person real-estate business and eventually became the first woman ever to lead a Fortune 50 company. When Carly was recruited to lead HP in 1999, the industry was facing the worst technology recession in 25 years. Under Carly’s leadership, revenue grew, innovation tripled, growth quadrupled, and HP became the 11th largest company in the U.S.
During her tenure at HP, the company received numerous civic recognitions, including being named one of the 100 Best Corporate Citizens by Business Ethics Magazine, one of the 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers by Working Mother Magazine, receiving a 100% rating by The Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s Corporate Equality Index, and being named one of the World’s Most Respected Companies by The Financial Times and PricewaterhouseCooper.
After leaving HP, Carly focused her efforts on giving back. Prior to Unlocking Potential, she served as the Chairman of Good360, the world’s largest product philanthropy organization, and as Chairman of Opportunity International, a Christian-based organization that lifts millions out of poverty around the globe through micro-finance. She also founded the One Woman Initiative in partnership with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, to engage and empower women in Pakistan, Egypt, India and the Philippines through increased access to economic opportunity.
Carly was appointed by President Bush and CIA Director Michael Hayden to serve as the Chairman of the External Advisory Board of the CIA after 9/11. In this capacity, she held the highest clearances available to a civilian, and focused her efforts on CIA recruitment policies, information technology capabilities and organizational integration.
In 2015, Carly launched a campaign for President. Running as a political outsider, Carly spoke about empowering and engaging citizens to take back government from a political ruling class that has failed to deliver results. There, many more Americans came to know her as a clear-eyed, direct leader capable of actually solving problems.
Carly is also a best-selling author. Her titles include Tough Choices and Rising to the Challenge. She is currently working on a third book about leadership.
She and her husband, Frank, have been happily married for 33 years. They reside in northern Virginia near their daughter, son-in-law and two granddaughters.