Women Must Know They Are Not Second-Class Citizens, Says Businesswoman Indra Nooyi

WASHINGTON – Women must not see themselves as second-class citizens and know that they too have arrived on the scene, Indra Nooyi, who has broken many glass ceilings as a businesswoman, said on Sunday.


“It does not matter, where you’re born and what your heritage was, I think the US gives you a great opportunity to be anybody you want to be as long as you work hard, you contribute positively to whatever you work on in and you have integrity,” Nooyi told PTI in an interview.


Nooyi, 64, was on Sunday inducted into the prestigious National Portrait Gallery along with Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, Frances Arnold and Lin-Manuel Miranda.

The induction ceremony was marked with a star-studded gala that included former First Lady Michelle Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, among others.


Nooyi said it sent the message to the people that the US is a great country to make your future in.



“I think going forward people like us paved the path for women to be viewed as equal, powerful and contributing as anybody else. And, so women should not feel like second-class citizens. They should know they too have arrived on the scene. And their contributions will also be noticed irrespective of your background,” she said.


“I think that’s the key thing. To be an Indian-American, to be included among business leaders in the portrait gallery basically says, here is a country that only cares about your contribution, not necessarily where you came from and who you are,” she said.


“It is a pretty special day today. Special because I’ve just begun to understand the value of the portrait gallery. I didn’t know a portrait gallery existed because I had never been to one. So, I came to visit this gallery about a year ago when they informed me about this. I was simply blown away by the fact that such a gallery existed, that portraiture is a way to tell the story of the country and all the people who contributed to it,” she said.


The Portrait Gallery, she said, told a beautiful story.


“It’s not just a picture, it tells a story. If you go downstairs to the portrait gallery, there’s a room that is now showcasing the women’s suffragette movement. It’s a fantastic story of how the whole thing evolved,” she said.

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