Top 25 Women Leaders
Debra Cafaro, 57
When Cafaro became CEO of Ventas in 1999, she had a law degree and experience in real estate finance, but none in healthcare. She has plenty now. The real estate investment trust she leads specializes in healthcare properties, claiming a portfolio of more than 1,600 assets in the U.S., Canada and the U.K. Cafaro, 57, ranked 27th last year among the best-performing CEOs in the world, according to the Harvard Business Review, based on its estimate that Ventas produced a 1,636% return for investors during her tenure. In April, Ventas expanded into ownership of hospitals, not just as real estate but as enterprises, with the $1.75 billion acquisition of 10-hospital Ardent Medical Services.