Luncheon Keynote by the Honorable Barbara Franklin, Former U.S. Secretary of Commerce, President and CEO of Barbara Franklin Enterprises.
Barbara Hackman Franklin is an American government official, corporate director, and business executive. She served as the 29th U.S. Secretary of Commerce from 1992-1993 to President George H.W. Bush, during which she led a Presidential mission to China.
Prior to her Cabinet position, Secretary Franklin served in the presidential administrations of Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, and Ronald Reagan. In the Nixon White House, she led the first Presidential effort to advance women in the federal government. Following that, she was an original commissioner and first Vice Chair of the US Consumer Product Safety Commission. In 2006, she received the Woodrow Wilson Award for Public Service. In 2017 TIME Magazine named her one of the “50 Women who Made American Political History”.
Secretary Franklin has served on the board of directors of 18 companies, including Dow Chemical, Aetna Inc., Westinghouse, and Nordstrom. Directorship Magazine and the American Management Association named her one of the most influential people in corporate governance, and in 2014 she was inducted into the Directorship 100 Hall of Fame.
She is currently the President and CEO of Barbara Franklin Enterprises, a private international consulting firm. Secretary Franklin was one of the first women graduates of the Harvard Business School. She is married to Wallace Barnes, retired chairman and CEO of Barnes Group, Inc.