Sheryl Sandberg, the chief operating officer of Facebook, “is used to being the only woman in the boardroom,” said Dominic Rushe in the London Guardian, “but she doesn’t like it.” That’s why, as she has climbed the tech world’s ranks, she’s been an outspoken advocate for women’s causes and careers. The No. 2 at the social-networking giant since 2008, when Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg personally poached her from Google, the 42-year-old is widely seen as the business brains behind Facebook’s remarkable growth. Under her management, the number of users has grown more than tenfold, and the company is now profitable. The “smooth and perfect foil to the geeky, spiky Zuckerberg,” Sandberg is expected to become a billionaire when the company goes public this year.
As the “adult in the room,” Sandberg has “emerged as the business face” of Facebook, said Benny Evangelista in the San Francisco Chronicle. She’s also become the “ultimate role model for women who want to have it all,” balancing a successful career and two young children. We need more “women at all levels” of the business world, she says, but “until women are as ambitious as men, they’re not going to achieve as much.”