No. 7: Stacey Friedman, JPMorgan Chase

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Stacey Friedman
Managing Director and General Counsel, J.P. Morgan Corporate and Investment Bank, JPMorgan Chase

Stacey Friedman's big job at the nation's largest bank is about to get a lot bigger. Friedman has run the legal department at J.P. Morgan's corporate and investment bank since 2012, but early next year she takes over as general counsel for all of JPMorgan Chase, replacing Stephen Cutler, who will become a vice chairman.

Cutler recruited Friedman from the law firm Sullivan & Cromwell and reportedly had been grooming her as his successor for the past 18 months by including her in meetings with regulators and all of the company's major cases. The investment banking unit has had its share of legal troubles in recent years and Friedman has been instrumental in negotiating settlements with regulators for issues ranging from currency manipulation to the sale of shoddy mortgages.

In her new role, Friedman will become the third woman on the 10-person operating committee for JPMorgan Chase, joining Chief Financial Officer Marianne Lake and asset management Chief Executive Mary Callahan Erdoes.

Friedman also will be the only female general counsel at any of the nation's large banks, which is fitting given how passionate she is about diversity in the workplace. She is the executive sponsor of the company's legal diversity committee and, in this role, oversaw the development of a program to recruit more women and minorities to the legal department.

Friedman also gets that women — and men — sometimes need to leave the corporate world for a while, so last year she helped launch a program that provides training to legal professionals who have been on a hiatus for at least two years.

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