You are here: American University News AU Power Players


AU Power Players

By  | 

American University’s changemaking president Sylvia Burwell is among the Washingtonian’s most powerful women in DC. Featured in the October issue of the magazine—on newsstands now—the list celebrates 169 of the most influential women shaping government, business, education, law, median, nonprofits, and the arts. 

“I’m proud to be a part of AU’s changemaking community of women who are making an impact across our city and around the world,” Burwell said. 

This marks the fourth time Burwell has made the biennial list as AU’s president. She was named among the most powerful Washington women in 2017, just months after she was named the first woman to lead the institution. She was also featured in 2019 and 2021. 

The 2023 list includes a sisterhood of Eagles. In addition to Burwell, these eight Washington power players have a connection to AU: 

  • Gina Adams, SPA/BS ’80, corporate vice president, government and regulatory affairs, FedEx, and chair, AU Board of Trustees 
  • Muriel Bowser, SPA/MPP ’00, mayor, Washington, DC 
  • Debra Lerner Cohen, CAS/BA ’77, principal owner, Washington Nationals 
  • Ann Friedman, SOE/MAT ’98, founder and CEO, Planet Word
  • Erika Pulley-Hayes, general manager, WAMU 88.5
  • Monica Jeffries Hazangeles, CAS/MA ’96, president and CEO, Strathmore 
  • Anita Josey-Herring, chief judge, DC Superior Court, and adjunct professor, WCL
  • Nancy Jacobson, SOC/MS ’88, founder and CEO, No Labels