First Lady Michelle Obama speaks at the Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit
By Kristen Bellstrom
October 17, 2015

Washington, D.C. is always a city of deal makers and influencers, but if the nation’s capital seemed just a bit more power-packed than usual this week, there’s a simple explanation: Fortune‘s annual Most Powerful Women Summit was in town.

The three-day gathering drew big names from the world of business (IBM CEO Ginni Rometty, GM CEO Mary Barra, Berkshire Hathaway CEO—and honorary Most Powerful Man—Warren Buffett), politics (Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, U.S. Chief Technology Officer Megan Smith), media (Yahoo global news anchor Katie Couric, Fox anchor Megyn Kelly), as well as power players from retail, real estate, finance and countless other fields.

Oh, and did we mention that the Tuesday evening gala featured First Lady Michelle Obama?

Read on for ten of most memorable thoughts and insights shared on the MPW stage—and for all of Fortune’s coverage of the event, click here.

“That’s a complicated question.”

–Ivanka Trump, responding to Pattie Sellers’ question about whether she is happy that her father is running for president.

 

“I can’t help but see myself in these girls. I can’t help but see my daughters in these girls.”

–First Lady Michelle Obama, on the girls she hopes to help with her new education initiative, Let Girls Learn.

 

“If every company were being managed well, there certainly wouldn’t be any reason for activists.”

–Berkshire Hathaway chairman and CEO Warren Buffett, on the rise of activist investors.

 

“You will be the disrupter should you choose to do it… Instead of being disrupted, you are the disrupter.”

–IBM chairman and CEO Ginni Rometti, on embracing “cognitive business.”

 

“When I joined journalism in 1979, harass was two words instead of one.”

–Yahoo global anchor Katie Couric, reflecting on the early days of her career.

 

“It’s clear we may have overestimated his anger-management skills.”

–Fox News host Megyn Kelly, on what she learned from her encounter with Donald Trump at the first Republican debate.

 

“We want you to focus on responsibility, on accountability, and making sure that anyone who is behaving in a way that takes your company down a path of criminal activity be not a part of the process — and that’s something that we’ll be taking very seriously.”

–U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, on the government’s new push to hold corporate criminals accountable.

 

“It’s the world’s worst job. It’s like herding cats.”

–Fox News host Greta Van Susteren, who doubts that Rep. Paul Ryan (D-Wis.) will become speaker of the House.

 

“Many of us can’t make it without lead-parent husbands… If you have a lead-parent husband, celebrate him!

–Author and New America Foundation president Anne-Marie Slaughter, on the importance of stay-at-home dads.

 

“What I’ve learned, first of all, is to live your values. It’s easy to put words on paper. What we had to do was demonstrate our values.

–GM CEO Mary Barra, on what she learned from the company’s scandal involving faulty ignition switches.

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