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New Clorox CEO brings female leadership of top companies to record 38

By
Jean Lotus
Newly named CEO Linda Randle of the Clorox Company will be the 38th female CEO to lead the U.S. Fortune 500 companies. Photo courtesy of the Clorox Company
Newly named CEO Linda Randle of the Clorox Company will be the 38th female CEO to lead the U.S. Fortune 500 companies. Photo courtesy of the Clorox Company

Aug. 3 (UPI) -- When new Clorox Company CEO Linda Rendle takes control of the company in September she will increase the ranks of Fortune 500 female leaders to a record high of 38, Fortune said Monday.

Clorox announced Monday that Rendle, 42, currently the company's president, will become CEO effective Sept. 14. She will replace CEO Benno Dorer, who will remain board chairman.

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While other companies saw sales fall due to the coronavirus pandemic, the cleaning supply company saw a 15% spike in sales during the first months of the pandemic, and on Saturday reported another 8% increase in sales year over year.

Clorox disposable wipes were in short supply, along with toilet paper, in the early days of the pandemic.

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"We continue to have a significant role supporting public health, given the ongoing needs and changing behaviors of our consumers and communities," Rendle said in a statement.

Rendle graduated with an economics undergraduate degree from Harvard University and worked at Procter & Gamble before moving to Clorox in 2003, the company said Monday.

She spearheaded the company's "IGNITE" strategy, which aims to align company decisions with environmental, social and government priorities, Clorox said in a statement.

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Rendle's IGNITE initiative aims to make the cleaning wipes disposable and expand the company's brand to include products in wellness and nutraceuticals, the company said.

Females heading Fortune 500 companies is still a tiny fraction of leadership in the U.S. corporations. Even with a record 38 female CEOs, women run less than 8% of the Fortune 500 businesses.

Only three of those companies have women of color at the helm, and none have Black or Latina women as CEOs, Fortune magazine said in May.

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Along with bleach products, Clorox also sells brands such as Pine-Sol, Liquid-Plumr, Glad garbage bags, kitty litter, charcoal and salad dressing. Revenue for the Oakland, Calif.,-based company totaled $6.7 billion last year, Fortune said.

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