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Entrepreneurs

Jean Nidetch, Diet Queen

Every woman in my family has been on a diet for as long as I can remember. Some of my earliest memories are of family parties: everyone surrounded by lovingly prepared dishes, saying “oh god, I shouldn’t eat this” and “I’m not eating carbs right now” as they piled their plates with lasagna and bread. That was the deal: diets weren’t really adhered to, but they were talked about incessantly.

Lillian Vernon

In 1987, Lillian Vernon took her mail-order company public, making it the first company founded by a woman and traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

Frieda Caplan

Frieda Caplan’s specialty food company has helped introduce a wide variety of fruits and vegetables to American palates, from kiwis and Asian pears to spaghetti squash and habanero chilies.

Fanny Brooks

Rather than try her fortune directly through prospecting, Fanny Brooks followed the Gold Rush as a teenager and opened a successful general store and boarding house, creating the infrastructure to support other pioneers.

Ruth Porat

Hailed as the most important woman on Wall Street for her work as CFO of Morgan Stanley, Ruth Porat became Google’s first female CFO in 2015.

Rachel Sassoon Beer

Rachel Sassoon Beer rose to fame as owner and editor of both The Observer and The Sunday Times, making her the first woman to edit a national newspaper.

Babatha

Spirited and determined, Babatha repeatedly fought for her rights in court, showing the differences between the ideal world of the Mishnah and the real lives of second century Jews.

Felice Nierenberg Schwartz

Recognizing the hurdles that can stop women from achieving, Felice Nierenberg Schwartz co-wrote How to Go to Work When Your Husband Is Against It, Your Children Aren’t Old Enough, and There’s Nothing You Can Do Anyhow in 1972.

Dorothy Schiff

Dorothy Schiff led many lives, from debutante to social reformer, but she is best remembered as the publisher of the New York Post, the first woman to run a New York newspaper.

Bertha Schaefer

Bertha Schaefer helped pioneer a new era in interior design, creating collaborations between architects, interior designers, and craftspeople to create new homes for the post-war era.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Entrepreneurs." (Viewed on May 22, 2015) <http://jwa.org/topics/entrepreneurs>.

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