2012 The Root 100

Finance executive Mellody Hobson's ties extend from Wall Street to Hollywood to the White House.

  • Influence: 146.6
  • Reach: 8.9
  • Substance: 7.0
  • Media Mentions: 156
  • Internet Mentions: 11300
  • Twitter Followers: 501
  • Mellody Hobson

  • Money-management executive, personal-finance expert and humanitarian.
  • Job: President of Ariel Investments, LLC
  • Sector: Business
  • Twitter: @MellodyHobson
  • Location: Chicago
  • Age: 43
  • Bio: With personal connections from Wall Street to Hollywood to the White House, Mellody Hobson is a true power player. As the president of Chicago's Ariel Investments and a personal finance expert for ABC, Hobson is passionate about building wealth through investing, and advocates that African Americans focus on it more. The youngest of six children raised by a single mother, Hobson graduated from Princeton, where she met Ariel's chairman and CEO, John W. Rogers. She is a personal friend of the Obamas and fundraiser for the president's re-election campaign. Hobson is a director on several boards, including Estée Lauder, Groupon, Starbucks and DreamWorks (whose creator, George Lucas, is her boyfriend). In July 2012 Hobson was named chairman of her native Chicago's After School Matters, a nonprofit that provides teens with career-developing out-of-school activities.