Vanity Fair profiles women CEOs and founders of color making a difference in critical and emerging business sectors:
Still, these women (the 26 founders shown here completed their $1 million or more in fund-raising before November 15, 2017, according to start-up accelerator DigitalUndivided) are the most visible faces of a revolution. Over the last two decades, black women have become the fastest-growing demographic of entrepreneurs, owning nearly 60 percent of all black businesses. And if current efforts to diversify the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) workforce have their intended impact, the number and scope of founders should increase as well: more than 90 percent of founders of “unicorns”—companies with a valuation of $1 billion or more—previously worked at top tech firms. That will mean more chances of finding “someone to identify with—someone to root for and aspire to be,” as Marla Blow, founder and C.E.O. of the credit-card venture FS Card, has put it. Representation matters, even in this rarefied air.