2nd Annual

CFO Leadership Awards

December 9, 2024 | New York, NY

Chief Financial Officers are the pulse that drives major corporations, the lifeblood of their organization. The CFO Leadership Awards will honor the courage and influence required to navigate through the most disruptive conditions since the Great Depression. Pandemics, supply chain bottlenecks, runaway inflation, banking crises, cyber breaches and talent shortages have presented more challenges than most executives face in a lifetime.

These awards will pay tribute to those elite leaders who make it possible for companies to operate and thrive whatever the conditions, internally or externally. These days, it is not only finance that preoccupies CFOs. The strategic CFO engages in a host of issues that are essential to the future and well-being of their firms, as our award categories exemplify. For these reasons, StrategicCFO360 is excited to recognize CFOs for their contributions to their firms, industries, the profession and the economy at large.

And what makes the awards particularly unique is who chooses the honorees – not editors or analysts or service providers but rather a selection committee comprised of peer CFOs who know firsthand what it takes to lead in today’s business environment.

The 2024 Selection Committee includes:

  • Alastair Borthwick, Chief Financial Officer, Bank of America
  • Susan Diamond, Chief Financial Officer, Humana
  • Jeff Epstein, Leader, Bessemer Venture Partners CFO Council; Former CFO, Oracle
  • Gary Millerchip, EVP and Chief Financial Officer, Costco
  • Leeny Oberg, EVP and Chief Financial Officer, Marriott International
  • Richard Puccio, EVP, Finance and Chief Financial Officer, Analog Devices
  • Rachel Ruggeri, Chief Financial Officer, Starbucks
  • Aradhana Sarin, Executive Director and Chief Financial Officer, AstraZeneca
  • Tracey Travis, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, The Estée Lauder Companies

AWARD CATEGORIES

CFO of the Year

The recipient of this award demonstrates significant contributions to the short- and long-term success of his or her company.

Dealmaker of the Year

The recipient of this award will have been deeply involved in the execution of a significant transaction(s), such as an IPO, merger (sell side), or acquisition (buy side).

Lifetime Achievement

The recipient of this award will have created a strong legacy in his or her contributions to a company’s growth and profitability, as well as positively impacted the larger community of finance executives.

Rising Stars

This category will recognize emerging talent in the finance community. Three recipients will be recognized based on early career contributions, demonstrating innovation, adaptability, initiative and strategic leadership.

2023 HONOREES

Leeny Oberg, CFO, Marriott

Leeny Oberg

Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President, Marriott International

SORC 1 | Global CFO

Aradhana Sarin

Executive Director and Chief Financial Officer, AstraZeneca

Gary Millerchip

Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, The Kroger Co.

NOMINATION FAQS

The CFO Leadership Awards will recognize an elite group of CFOs for outstanding contributions as leaders of strategy and growth for their companies at times of immense technological and social change. These individuals bring skills, expertise and vision to their jobs that are above and beyond what is usually required of finance leaders. The awards pay tribute to those individuals who are at the pinnacle of their profession. They excel as role models in relationships with top management, colleagues, shareholders, customers and employees.

CFO of the Year

The recipient of this award demonstrates significant contributions to the short- and long-term success of his or her company. This CFO should clearly represent the following skills and characteristics:

  1. Mindset: Possesses an agile mindset that enables them to respond quickly to changing market conditions and customer needs, and to drive continuous improvement.
  2. Communication Skills: Ability to articulate financial concepts and data to non-financial stakeholders in a clear and concise manner. Inspires others to believe in and support the company’s mission.  Transparency in all communications empowers stakeholders to make informed decisions.
  3. Ethics: Upholds high ethical standards and ensures that all financial decisions and practices are in compliance with legal and ethical requirements. Creates a culture of ethical accountability where employees recognize that ethics are paramount in every decision.
  4. Financial Excellence: Manages financial resources effectively, maximizing the company’s financial performance while mitigating risks Builds a financial model that can adapt seamlessly in a volatile and unpredictable business climate.
  5. Innovation: Creates innovative financial strategies and tools that help the company improve its financial performance and gain a competitive advantage. Solves problems outside the world of finance and accounting, supporting growth in a fiscally responsible manner.
  6. Leadership: Leads and motivates his or her team to achieve business and financial objectives and contribute to the overall success of the company.

 

Dealmaker of the Year

The recipient of this award will have been deeply involved in the execution of a significant transaction(s), such as an IPO, merger (sell side), or acquisition (buy side). Consideration will be given to factors such as the size and complexity of the deal, strategic implications and volume of deals. This CFO clearly represent the following skills and characteristics:

  1. Collaboration: Works effectively with other members of the senior management team and other functional areas within the organization, as well as outside advisers (bankers, lawyers), as well as the other parties in the transaction, to get the deal done successfully.
  2. Communication skills: Ability to articulate complex financial concepts and data to both internal and external stakeholders. Inspires trust and confidence in investors, employees, and other stakeholders.
  3. Creativity and Innovation: Identifies and structures transaction(s) that create unique value propositions for the company. Recognizes the opportunities that others do not.
  4. Financial Acumen: Highly skilled in financial analysis, with ability to identify and assess potential opportunities and risks associated with a deal, as well as evaluate the financial impact of the deal on the company.
  5. Negotiation Skills: Defends the interests of their company in negotiations with external parties. Works to resolve differences with adversaries, and has the fortitude to walk away from opportunities when not the right fit.
  6. Risk Management: Evaluates risks associated with transactions, with ability to effectively manage those risks and minimize any negative impact on the company in a way that does not stop growth and innovation.

 

Lifetime Achievement

This seasoned executive or recently retired CFO will have created a strong legacy in his or her contributions to a company’s growth and profitability, as well as positively impacted the larger community of finance executives. This CFO should clearly represent the following skills and characteristics:

  1. Leadership Legacy: Proven ability to provide strategic direction and inspire others within the finance profession. Seeking examples of how the executive has shaped the financial landscape of their organization or industry and/or created an enduring impact on future generations of finance professionals.
  2. Collaboration: Builds effective working relationships not only within finance and accounting, but cross-functionally in his or her own company as well as with industry peers.
  3. Culture-Builder: Leads by example, cultivating respect, trust and inclusiveness within the finance team and across the organization. Fosters a culture of excellence through a commitment to developing talent, promoting diversity and cultivating a positive work environment.
  4. Integrity: Demonstrates a commitment to upholding ethical standards and maintaining the highest level of integrity in financial practices, including transparency, accountability, and responsible stewardship of financial resources.
  5. Innovation: Has a track record of innovating and willingness to embrace change, evidenced by new processes, technologies or transformation efforts that have significantly improved financial operations or outcomes.
  6. Influence: Positively impacts the larger finance professions through contributions of thought leadership, participation in industry associations and mentorship of emerging finance professionals.

 

Rising Stars

This category will recognize emerging talent in the finance community. Three recipients will be recognized based on early career contributions, demonstrating innovation, adaptability, initiative and strategic leadership. The recipients will have demonstrated the following skills and characteristics:

  1. Financial Acumen: Contribute to financial performance improvements within the organization, such as revenue growth, cost management, profitability enhancement or financial risk mitigation.
  2. Strategic Vision: Ability to think strategically and innovate in response to changing business environments. Examples include introducing new ideas, processes or technologies to improve financial operations or drive business growth.
  3. Leadership: Exemplify strong leadership qualities with an ability to inspire and motivate others within the finance function and across the organization through effective communication, team-building and decision-making skills.
  4. Professional Development; A commitment to continuous learning through advanced education, professional certifications or participation in industry groups and leadership development programs.
  5. Integrity: Dedicated to ethical standards and values in their professional conduct, with a commitment to transparency and accountability in their decision-making and interactions.
  6. Collaboration: Seeks alignment within finance department and across the organization to align on key strategies, provide insights that lead to action and partner with others to drive success.

The CFO of the Year and Dealmaker of the Year awards are open to chief financial officers at publicly traded and privately held organizations who have been in their role (either at their current company or another company) for a minimum of three years. The Lifetime Achievement award is open to chief financial officers with more than 10 years of finance experience (either rat their current company or another company). The Rising Stars award is open to chief financial officers and other heads of finance at publicly traded and privately held organizations who have been in their role for less than three years.

Nominations may be submitted on behalf of CFOs by peers at other firms, colleagues, business partners, vendors and customers. 

Nominating submissions should cover the applicable criteria and qualifications from January 2023 through March 2024. Entries must be received by June 30 to be eligible.

Entries will be evaluated and candidates for awards chosen by an independent selection committee made up of experienced finance leaders. Nominations will be reviewed based on the set of criteria for each unique category.

Award honorees will be notified August 15, 2024.

All honorees will be invited to a special CFO Leadership Awards event in New York in early December. In addition, each honoree will be interviewed for a feature on StrategicCFO360.com and Chief Executive.net. Additional exposure for honorees will include press release and social media promotion.