Blog Post

Fierce Woman Feature – Betsy Ziegler

Last Thursday, we joined hundreds of other women and innovative organizations across Chicagoland for the Chicago Innovation Awards. I was fortunate to be selected as a finalist, but the recipients are luminaries! They are definitely five Fierce Women, and I will feature each over the next several weeks.

First up, Betsy Ziegler, CEO of the world’s #1 ranked private incubator. I have known Betsy for more than 25 years since she and my BBF Archana Tarparavala served as strategy consultants for McKinsey & Co. fresh out of B-school. Betsy wears so many hats! After serving more than ten years with McKinsey (Pretty Fierce itself), she became the Associate Dean of MBA Programs and Admissions for Kellogg, where she assumed the role of Chief Innovation Officer.   Betsy led truly groundbreaking work to rethink how higher education will evolve and how the pace of change in everything from technology to the value of educational content will be turned inside out in our generation. For the past five years, she has served as CEO of 1871, expanding the programming offered and, more importantly, focusing on serving entrepreneurs from all communities – especially women and black and Latinx entrepreneurs. The volume of resources and support 1871 provides is phenomenal. Betsy’s vision, leadership, and straight-up dogged work make this possible. Plus, she makes others want to step up their game and grows the leaders around her.

Here’s to Betsy Ziegler, recipient of the Chicago Women in Innovation Award.  So excited that I can say “I knew her when…”  Congratulations Betsy!

Candance Chow, NextGroup Co-founder