Wednesday, February 3, 2010

"A Moment In Afro Herstory-Ursula Burns, CEO Xerox Corporation"

Ursula Burns THE CEO of THE XEROX CORPORATION

The joy and elation that I and probably others felt when Ursula Burns was named the new CEO of Xerox was one of great pride in this woman's accomplishments through perseverance and hard work. I also loved the fact that previous CEO Anne M. Mulcahy handed the helm of the company over to her and to me that was what the true succession of power is all about, especially when you know that this individual shares much of the same visions and goals of the company. I wish Ursula Burns immeasurable success for the future of The Xerox Corporation.

The CEO of The Xerox Corporation is a native New Yorker who grew up in a lower East Side housing project and is the first women of African descent to head a Fortune 500 company. Burns ascended the corporate ladder at Xerox, beginning as a summer engineering intern in 1980 and becoming the president of the printing giant in 2002.

In 2008, Burns ranked 10th on Fortune magazine's top 50 Most Powerful Women in America. She's the second-highest placed African-American woman behind only Oprah Winfrey, who was ranked No. 8 that year. Ursula Burns, was and is a math whiz, who graduated from Polytechnic Institute in Brooklyn with an engineering degree. She received a master's degree in mechanical engineering in 1981 from Columbia University. Burns is married to Lloyd Bean, a retired Xerox scientist. The couple have two children.


We tend to celebrate celebrities, but not the real trailblazers who are really the most influential in the world. Even though she's on the cover of Black Enterprise Magazine this month, she should have been boldly front and center on the cover of Essence Magazine instead of their usual celebrities. Sure they wrote a small article about her, but this was a cover defining moment in "Our Herstory" and as usual they saw no significance of her accomplishments.


Many women claim that wearing their hair the way it grows from their scalps feel that they won't get promoted or hired because of their appearance and that our natural hair is too radical. Really? It's not the appearance of your hair that's not accepted in corporate America-it's your inability and unwillingness to succeed for the success of the company that's not.

Failure is not an option and neither are excuses. We're not judged by our hair or what we look like anymore, were judged by are talents. Ursula Burns is an example of many women in corporate America who wear their hair in it's natural state knowing that they are more than a skin color and hair texture. Again, it's not all about ones appearance- it's all about your talents.


"My perspective comes in part from being a New York black lady, in part from being an engineer. I know I'm smart and have opinions worth being heard." ~Ursula Burns








2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Now that's what real power and influence looks like.

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