Desirée Rogers

AGE: 52
OCCUPATION: CEO, Johnson Publishing Company

The ex-wife of John Rogers (No. 35) has rehabbed her image from chastened White House social secretary to can-do executive. As the publisher of Ebony and Jet, Rogers raised much-needed cash by unloading Johnson’s South Michigan Avenue building. But her real power is social: An invitation from Rogers is among the most sought-after in town.

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Photograph: Zbigniew Bzdak/Chicago Tribune