How Julie Wainwright Built The RealReal To Be A Billion-Dollar Business | Forbes

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Julie Wainwright was the CEO of at the height of the dot-com bubble; on the day she had to shut the company down, her husband asked for a divorce. At 53, she started over, founding luxury online consignment retailer The RealReal. The company went public in 2019, and is now worth more than $1 billion.

“Clearly, I’m not going to be able to get my dream job from someone else,” Wainwright, now 64, recalls thinking in the months following’s demise. “I’m going to have to create my own.”

Wainwright exemplifies the entrepreneurial spirit and resilience we looked for when compiling this list.

In a moment when a global pandemic has pushed a disproportionate number of women out of the workforce—and forced hundreds of thousands into too-early retirements—it is our hope that the stories of the women on this list resonate, inform, and inspire.

Many of these stories include women who have survived similarly difficult moments. To bring this list to life, Forbes partnered with Mika Brzezinski, a journalist, best-selling author, co-host of MSNBC’s Morning Joe and founder of Know Your Value, a digital platform and community focused on empowering women to express their personal worth and achieve gender equity in the workplace.

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