Cara Carleton "Carly" Fiorina (; née Sneed; born September 6, 1954) is an American businesswoman and politician, known primarily for her tenure as chief executive officer (CEO) of Hewlett-Packard (HP) from 1999 to 2005. Fiorina was the first woman to lead a Fortune Top-20 company.In 2002, Fiorina oversaw what was then the largest technology sector merger in history, in which HP acquired rival personal computer manufacturer, Compaq. The transaction made HP the world's largest seller of personal computers. HP subsequently laid off 30,000 U.S. employees. Nonetheless, the number of employees exceeded the pre-merger figure and grew to 150,000 during her tenure. In February 2005, she was forced to resign as CEO and chair following a boardroom disagreement. She subsequently served as Chair of the philanthropic organization Good360.Fiorina ran unsuccessfully for the United States Senate in 2010 and the Republican presidential nomination in 2016. Fiorina was an adviser to Republican Senator John McCain's 2008 presidential campaign. In 2010, she won the Republican nomination for the United States Senate in California, but lost the general election to incumbent Democrat Barbara Boxer. Fiorina was a candidate in the 2016 Republican presidential primary, and was for seven days the vice-presidential running mate of Ted Cruz until he suspended his campaign. In 2020, Fiorina endorsed the presidential campaign of Democrat Joe Biden.
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