Carly Fiorina (born Cara Carleton Sneed; September 6, 1954) is an American businesswoman and a former Republican nominee for the United States Senate representing California. Fiorina served as chief executive officer of Hewlett-Packard from 1999 to 2005 and previously was an executive at AT&T and its equipment and technology spinoff, Lucent. She currently serves on the boards of several organizations.
Fiorina was considered one of the most powerful women in business during her tenure at Lucent and Hewlett-Packard. The spinoff, from HP, of Agilent Technologies – which had been initiated by her predecessor, Lew Platt – was completed shortly after she joined the company in 1999. Under her leadership, in 2002, the company completed a contentious merger with rival computer company Compaq. In 2005, Fiorina resigned as chief executive officer and chairman of Hewlett-Packard.
In 2008, Fiorina served as an advisor to Republican presidential candidate John McCain. In November 2009, Fiorina announced she would challenge incumbent Democrat Barbara Boxer for her United States Senate seat representing California. On June 8, 2010, Fiorina won the Republican primary election, but lost the general election on November 2, 2010 to Boxer.