Citi Group finds its first woman CEO in Jane Fraser

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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Jane Fraser
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Jane Fraser, head of consumer banking at Citigroup Inc will be the first woman to become its Chief Executive Officer.

She will take the reins from CEO Michael Corbat in February.

A Citi group statement said that Fraser, who is 53 now has been a rising star in the financial industry, with a career that spans investment banking, wealth management, troubled mortgage workouts and strategy in Latin America, a key geography for Citigroup.

Fraser’s promotion to CEO was hailed as a step in the right direction for an industry where top ranks contain fewer women or diverse executives.

The resigning CEO Mr. Corbat described Fraser’s new position as a pioneering event and a point of pride for Citigroup, in an internal memo.

Ms. Fraser spoke publicly about the struggles she faced in a highly competitive market as a woman, and later as a working mother, which has encouraged women to succeed in their life in spite of difficulties.

Cathy Bessant, chief of Bank of America Corp operations and technology tweeted, “Great news for the company and women everywhere!” describing the appointment as, “A big and fantastic moment.”

Fraser joins a small group of women who broke the barrier to get into the higher-level positions of major financial institutions.

Other than Besant, Fidelity Investment CEO Abigail Johson, Marion Lake, head of JPMorgan’s consumer credit along with its head of finance Jennifer Piazza, Alison Rose, CEO of British Bank NatWest are few other women who have succeeded to reach in high positions.

On the current list of Fortune 500, only 37 companies are lead by women.

Michael Corbat, who has spent 37 years at Citigroup, was made the CEO in 2012 and will resign from the role in February 2021.