Norway’s most powerful woman

Kristin Skogen Lund. Photo: Telenor

Kristin Skogen Lund. Photo: Telenor

Kristin Skogen Lund, President of the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO) and Executive Director of Telenor, was named Norway’s most powerful woman by Kapital magazine. It is the first time that a business leader climbs to the top of the magazine’s rankings.


“We have never had a business woman with so much power and influence as Kristin Skogen Lund,” said Kapital editor Vibeke Holth.

Skogen Lund celebrated with her colleagues at the awards ceremony on June 15, but she couldn’t stay for long.

“June is a busy month at work and at home,” said the mother of four.

As the executive director of Telenor, Skogen Lund leads thousands of employees with responsibility for activities in the Nordic region and Broadcast. As NHO president, she is the top elected leader from among 20,000 companies with over half a million employees.

“Kapital chose Skogen Lund as Norway’s most powerful woman because she is an exceptionally knowledgeable person with an impressive network, which includes prominent positions in several major Norwegian companies,” said Holth.

“As the NHO president, Skogen Lund has helped to dispel the myth that business largely consists of men in the boys club. She appears to be more humble than her predecessors and to a greater extent connected to the people. Her political perspective is also rooted more in the center, between the Labor Party and the Conservative Party. These key characteristics and attitude mean that she can continue to be an important bridge builder between NHO and Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions (LO),” said Holth.

The Kapital editor believes Skogen Lund has “unique characteristics” that agrees well with the NHO’s core values: courage, cooperation, accessibility and credibility.

“I want to have a leadership style that is clear, but inclusive and motivating, so if the Kapital award adds this reason, I have hopefully, to some extent, succeeded in this. I believe that a leader doesn’t get any further with sharp elbows and conflict,” said Skogen Lund.

In her private life, Skogen Lund appears to be a worthy winner.

“She is impressive at home too. As a mother of two pairs of twins in school and with a husband who is a lawyer at the Attorney General’s office, she shows that it is possible to combine family and career,” says Holth.

“We have compared our list of most powerful women to the list of Norway’s wealthiest women. One of the main findings is that there are relatively few truly wealthy women on the list of the most powerful. A similar list of Norway’s most powerful men would have included considerably more names from the wealthiest list. It shows that women who come to the top of Norway to do  it on their own,” says Vibeke Holth.

Here is Kapital’s list of the top 10 most powerful women in Norway:

Kristin Skogen Lund: NHO President and CEO of Telenor. Knowledgeable, impressive network and influential positions. Unique personal qualities.

Hanne Bjurstrøm: Minister of Labor is responsible for, among other things, pension reform and the Norwegian Labor and Welfare Administration (NAV), all significant areas that are important to most Norwegians.

Erna Solberg: Leader of Høyre (the Conservative Party). She has served on a wide variety of committees of in the Storting (Parliament), and is likely to become the next prime minister.

Nina Frisak: Regjeringsråd (Secretary) for the Prime Minister’s office. Frisak is proof that one can remain anonymous and still have great power. She manages Stoltenberg’s staff, and always participates in Cabinet meetings. Extremely important bureaucrat.

Kristin Halvorsen: Leader of Sosialistisk Venstreparti (Socialist Left Party). Served as Minister of Finance from 2005 – 2009, and now the Minister of Education and Research. She is a member of government committees.

Anne Carine Tanum: An heir to the publishing house Tanum, she has climbed 92 places since last year’s ranking. Tanum is a member of Helse Sør-Øst (Southeastern Norway Regional Health Authority), the chairperson of DnB NOR and Litteraturhuset, and the former chairman of NRK.

Liv Signe Navarsete: Leader of Senterpartiet (Center Party). She remained in this year’s ranking, despite the controversy surrounding the party’s finances. She is Minister of Local Government and Regional Development and is a member of the government’s powerful subcommittee.

Grete Faremo: Minister of Defense. Faremo shows her power and ability to use her position despite relentless pressure from several directions.

Siv Jensen: Leader of the Progress Party. She leads the second largest opposition party, essential for a change of government and with key positions in parliament.

Magnhild Meltveit Kleppa: Minister of Transport and Communications. She is an influential cabinet minister in an important ministry for the general public.

To see the list of Norway’s top 100 most powerful women, visit

Norwegian American Logo

The Norwegian American

The Norwegian American is North America's oldest and only Norwegian newspaper, published since May 17, 1889.