Forbes has been releasing its list of 100 Most Powerful Women since 2005, and every year some of the same women make the list. Every year, there are some surprises about the women who made the list and about the women who didn't make the list.
For the fifth consecutive year, the most powerful woman among the one hundred most powerful women is German chancellor Angela Merkel. Chancellor Merkel has made the list 10 times over the past 12 years. Nine of those times, Merkel was No. 1.
Following Merkel is another politician, Hillary Clinton, who comes in at No. 2. In fact, Hillary Clinton has appeared on Forbes' list every year since its beginning. She has been a powerful woman as a senator, secretary of state, and influential personality. If things go the way Hillary wants them to go, perhaps next year she will unseat Merkel.
This year's top 10 include Merkel and Clinton followed by Melinda Gates, Janet Yellen, Mary Barra, Christine Lagarde, Dilma Rousseff, Sheryl Sandberg, Susan Wojcicki, and Michelle Obama.
The top ranking billionaire this year is Oprah Winfrey at No. 12, who has a personal net worth of $3 billion. Beyonce Knowles leads in the entertainment field at No. 21, while Anna Wintour, Conde Nast artistic director, reigns over the media sector at No. 28.
"The Forbes list this year includes a lot of fresh faces. Nineteen women on the list are newcomers."According to the Daily Mail, for the first time ever, pop star Taylor Swift came in at No. 64, who at 25, is the youngest of the 100 women.
Some women are returning after being absent for a year or two. After first appearing at No. 38 on the 2010 list, then-CEO of Santander U.K. Ana Patricia Botín returned in 2011, taking the No. 77 spot before dropping off in 2012. This year, however, Botín is back on the list, placing at No. 18.
"Returning to the list are Ellen DeGeneres (50), Angelina Jolie (54), Sofia Vergara (57), Shakira (81), and Yao Chen (82)."It is interesting that women who have made the list in the past did not make it this year. For instance, Gisele Bundchen may be the world's most famous model-entrepreneur, but she is not on this year's list of Forbes 100 Most Powerful Women. The Brazilian model, who has appeared on this list since 2010, was one of the 19 women who were left off this year. Others who made the list in the past but did not make the list this year include Margaret Hamburg, Amy Pascal, Gail Kelly, and Lady Gaga.
Seven women who appeared on the inaugural list in 2004 are on the 2015 list which include Melinda Gates, Christine Lagarde, Hillary Clinton, Indra Nooyi. Oprah, Queen Elizabeth II, and Ho Ching.
More than half of the women (59) on the list are American. Belgium, Ireland, China, the United Kingdom, and India are represented. Asia-Pacific citizens make the second strongest showing at 18. There are 12 Europeans on the list. Latin America and the Middle East have four women, and three Africans have slots.
See the complete list of Forbes 100 Most Powerful Women.
[Image via Forbes]