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The Broadsheet: January 20th

Good morning, Broadsheet readers. Lindsey Vonn is now the world’s winningest female skier and George Lucas made a new film with a new audience (including his three daughters) in mind. Read on to hear what it’s like to be one of the few women in Davos. Enjoy Tuesday!


• The most successful skier of all time. After winning the super-G event in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy on Monday, Lindsey Vonn became the winningest female skier of all time with a record 63 World Cup victories. It was her first win in the event this season after recovering from two knee injuries that kept her out of the Winter Olympics in Sochi. ESPN


 Pepsi plays nice. PepsiCo chairman and CEO Indra Nooyi is bringing William Johnson, the former CEO of H.J. Heinz Co. and an advisory partner of Nelson Peltz’s Trian, onto her board as an independent director. The addition appeases activist investor Peltz, who will will not move forward with a proxy fight for board seats, at least for now — and could help Nooyi in her ongoing turnaround effort. Fortune

• Medicare chief resigns. Marilyn Tavenner, top administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the official who oversaw the Obamacare website’s botched rollout, resigned last week. In a nearly 2,000-word email to staff announcing her resignation, Tavenner did not mention any failures with Fortune

• ‘Rape is not a joke’ Protests against Bill Cosby escalated to new levels on Sunday when the comedian was met outside his show in Denver by 50 protesters all chanting “rape is not a joke” and “we believe the women.”  Bloomberg

Why Ava got left out. The Academy decided not to nominate Selma director Ava DuVernay for Best Director because it “tends to recognize the body of work of directors, not just a single film, and this is just Ms. DuVernay’s third narrative feature,” writes David Carr for The New York Times. Still, the Academy could stand to become a more diverse voting body: It has been around 93% white and 76% male for quite some time now. NYTimes

• Failure in Lebanon. Lebanese women who try to leave abusive marriages face systematic discrimination within the court system, according to a new report. “Passage of an optional civil marriage code, alongside badly needed reforms to existing personal status laws and religious courts, are long overdue,” said the deputy director of the Human Rights Watch. Also, conservative leaders in the country are arguing that the newly-crowned Miss Lebanon should lose her crown after taking a selfie with “the enemy,” Miss Israel.  NYTimes

Pink taxis? After a woman in India was allegedly raped by her Uber driver, one of the country’s largest cab companies is supplying female passengers with pink cabs driven exclusively by women and outfitted with pepper spray.  WSJ

• MOVERS AND SHAKERS: Peng Lei, co-founder of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, is now on the board of directors of Paytm, a mobile wallet company. Christine Quinn, the former New York City Council speaker, is now a special advisor to Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Ornella Barra, EVP of Walgreen Boots Alliance, is now on the board of directors of drug wholesaler AmerisourceBergen.


What Davos is like for a female CEO

When Barri Rafferty first went to Davos in 2012, she didn’t know what to expect. But Rafferty, the CEO of North America at public relations firm Ketchum, had heard so much about the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting that she was anxious before attending.

“I rarely get nervous going into any situation, but listening to people who had been before talk about how overwhelming it’s to be there got me a little nervous,” she said. “They call it a business marathon for a reason. It’s a stamina sport that goes on morning, noon and night.”

While Rafferty may not have had a good handle on the actual goings-on of the conference, she had a hunch that female attendees would be in the minority. As a woman CEO, Rafferty is used to going events and being one of just a few women in the room. Sure enough, she was a minority at Davos her inaugural World Economic Forum.

This year, the percentage of women attending the global conference is expected to be 17%, a 2% increase over last year. While Rafferty is not attending Davos’ 2015 conference, which officially starts on January 21, I spoke with her about her experiences in 2012 and 2014.

Edited Excepts:

Why is Davos a good business opportunity for executives?

There is no other place where you can go and get that much global business information. You come back with a lot of diverse thinking. At Davos there is the external agenda, which is really just the mainstream events at the conference that everyone goes to, but then there is a more informal agenda which is a lot of breakfasts and drinks and things. That’s really where you get an opportunity to meet with a lot of senior-level people.

As one of the few women at the event, do you feel like you stood out?

In the evening events in particular, a lot of men take their wives. When you are in [those] social settings, often people assume that you are someone’s wife. But as a woman in business at my level, you are used to not being in the majority so you really have to go into it with the kind of attitude that you are going to be there out drinking with the guys and enjoy the whole thing. But I think you are conscious about of it at times and say to yourself, ‘Wow we still have work to do.’

Only 17% of attendees at the event are expected to be women. Why do you think the percentage is so low?
What you are looking at is the people who are in the top positions at an organization. You get five slots to bring people if you are a big corporation. So if your company is going to send five people, they are going to look at their C-Suite people, which likely has fewer women. The World Economic Forum has worked hard to make sure that if you bring five people, one out of five has to be a woman. If there really is 17% women there this year, then at least we are making a little progress because it has been lower in the past.

What do you think is the No. 1 thing we can do to get more women into Davos?

Companies have to be cognizant of who they send. I don’t think when they think about their individual delegations they are necessarily thinking about gender. It’s a different lens to put it though. If you asked 10 CEOs tomorrow how they choose, they probably don’t see the event as the same barometer for gender parity that we do. Gender parity needs to becomes a female and a male issue. It’s just as important for women to [go to Davos] and have these opportunities as well.

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• Join @WomenIRL. Let’s face it. We tend to fill our social media feeds with the unrealistic highlight reels of our lives. Our friends at Real Simple started a hashtag campaign and Instagram account focused on life’s messier moments. It’s becoming my new favorite social media campaign, especially since every woman needs a laughable reality check every once and awhile. Real Simple

‘A little more feminine than Star Wars.’ After devoting his career to movies aimed at male-heavy audiences, George Lucas said that his new animated film, Strange Magic, is partly a tribute to his three daughters. “A lot of women love Star Wars,  but it was designed for 12-year-old boys,” he said. Strange Magic stars Evan Rachel Wood as the voice of a spirited fairy princess.  NY Daily News

Beating the boys. The only all-girl’s basketball team in a fifth-grade league in Springfield, Illinois has a record of 8-1 through the first half of the season. “We’d walk in, and all the boys would be like, ‘We’re playing girls?’ ” said point guard Anne Rupnik. “Then we’d beat them. Some of them cried.”  NYTimes


Why you should be more friendly at work  Fortune

Every new leader should take Lupita Nyong’o’s advice  Fortune

Being female in a Korean company  WSJ

Why I’m proud to be gay at home and at work  Fortune

The secret to smart groups is women  The Atlantic

Female CEOs are more depressed, but we can change that Quartz


Don’t wear busy as a badge of honor. We’ve become crazy about being crazy, and I’m stunned at how many people are absolutely exhausting themselves. It’s important to figure out how to be ruthlessly efficient and disciplined with your time, and do only those things that matter.

Kristin Muhlner, CEO of NewBrand Analytics, tells <em>The New York Times.</em>