Black women are making power moves and shattering glass ceilings in corporate America. According to Black Enterprise, Ramona Hood was recently appointed as a CEO at the delivery services company FedEx; making her the first Black woman in the company’s 49-year history to hold that position.
Hood began her journey with FedEx nearly three decades ago when the company was called Roberts Express. At the age of 19, she worked as a receptionist for FedEx’s Custom Critical division in Green, Ohio. When she started, the young mother was simply looking for a role that aligned with her college course schedule. Little did she know she was laying the foundation for a path of longevity within the Fortune 500 company. Throughout her career at FedEx, she’s been a driving force of innovation. She worked her way up the ladder to hold several leadership roles including serving as Vice President of Operations, Strategy, and Planning for FedEx Custom Critical. She’s also held executive-level positions within the FedEx Supply Chain division.
Her journey has come full circle. In her new role Hood—a graduate of the Ohio-based Walsh University who also holds an Executive MBA from Case Western Reserve University Weatherhead School of Management—will sit at the helm of FedEx Custom Critical as the President and CEO, where she started as a receptionist in 1991. She will oversee the strategic direction of the company and its executive leadership team. She strives to push diversity efforts within the company forward. “It is that level of intentionality that you have to have,” she said in a statement, according to Cleveland.com. “I now have a team that has no women on it. I have one African American man. As I add positions to the team, I need to focus on the diversity I’m talking about.”
Hood’s appointment comes at a time where there is a need for more racial representation in the C-suite. According to a study conducted by McKinsey & Company, only 1 in 25 executive leaders is a woman of color.