An anti-trust and labour lawyer, Christine Lagarde was the first female chair of major international law firm Baker & McKenzie, between 1999 and 2004. Born into a family of academics, as a teenager, Christine was a member of the French national synchronised swimming team.

A successful politician, she held various senior ministerial posts in the French government: Minister of Economic Affairs, Finance and Employment, Minister of Agriculture and Fishing and Minister of Trade.

In 2011, Christine took over as managing director of the scandal-plagued International Monetary Fund. She has tried to change the IMF’s culture while also coping with the European debt crisis and a sluggish global economy. Highly respected for her work, she was re-elected by consensus for a second five-year term in 2016.

In 2014, Lagarde was named the fifth most powerful woman in the world by Forbes magazine.

“Women, as the minority, have to prove their worth all the time. That’s the reason we tend to over-prepare, over-study, over-anticipate. I think it’s the case with many women leaders. We tend to overdo it.”