Founder, Chairman & CEO, Oxygen Media, LLC

Geraldine Laybourne founded Oxygen Media and served as its chairman and chief executive officer until she sold it to NBC Universal in 2007. Oxygen was launched in 2000 to fill a void in the television landscape–creating a network targeted to younger women. Oxygen’s founding investors were Oprah Winfrey, Carsey, Werner, Mandabach and Paul Allen. Signature programs like Who Cares About Girls, MoNique’s Fat Chance and Campus Ladies set to debunk myths about women and television and showed women would watch advocacy programming, fat can be beautiful and women are deeply funny. Its signature advocacy event, Mentors Walk (where accomplished women turned out in large numbers to mentor up and coming women), has been adopted by women in 10 countries.

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