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Ruter Dam of the Year 2019

Carina Åkerström, CEO Handelsbanken


Ruter Dam of the Year 2019 is Carina Åkerström, who since March this year has been president and CEO of Handelsbanken. Handelsbanken has approximately 12,000 employees and last year had an operating profit of just over SEK 22 billion. Carina has a long and successful career within the bank where she has achieved strong results over a long period of time. She started at the bank in 1986 and has, among other things, been vice president, manager of the regional bank in eastern Sweden and regional bank manager in Stockholm. She is the first woman to lead Handelsbanken.

- Carina Åkerström is a very qualified person with a solid track record. She has the will and ability to implement change and lead the way for the necessary transformation that the bank is facing with digitization, efficiency and cost savings. Carina is a true female role model, we are extra proud of the fact that she also attended Ruter Dam's program in 2004, says Marika Lundsten, CEO Ruter Dam.

The selection process for the Årets Ruter Dam honorary award takes into account the company's size, turnover, number of employees and the female manager's degree of power and influence. The award winner is appointed by Ruter Dam's board: chairman Gunnel Duveblad, board professional, Gunilla Ahrén, founder Ruter Dam, Ann Carlsson, CEO Apoteket AB, Malin Persson, board professional and Eva Krutmeijer, CEO and founder EKKO AB. Ruter Dam's board continuously monitors appointments at the highest management levels. At a jury meeting, the board decides which woman during the year has been given the greatest responsibility in terms of number of employees, turnover and overall responsibility.

- I am happy and proud to have been selected as Ruter Woman of the Year. The work that Ruter Dam does to draw attention to female leadership is very important. Equality is today strategically crucial to being able to recruit talented employees, and the more perspectives managers and employees contribute, the better they understand their customers. Equality is simply good for profitability, says Carina Åkerström.

The Ruter Dam Honorary Award of the Year is awarded annually in the form of a diploma and the honor in connection with the Ruter Dam Day, a seminar for participants from Ruter Dam's Leadership Development and Mentoring Program. Last year, the 2018 Route Woman of the Year award went to Petra Einarsson, president and CEO of BillerudKorsnäs, and the year before to Susanne Ehnbåge, president and CEO of Nordic NetOnNet.

Previous award winners include Helena Stjernholm, CEO of Industrivärden, Mia Brunell Livfors, CEO of Axel Johnson, Sonat Burman Olsson, former CEO of Coop Sweden, Annika Falkengren, former CEO of SEB and Ann Carlsson, CEO of Apoteket AB.


Anna Johansson, Micael Bindefeld AB

+46 73 342 27 28

Marika Lundsten, vd Ruter Dam & Spader Ess

+ 46 70 384 85 75

Handelsbankens pressavdelning

+46 8 701 80 18


The honorary award Ruter Dam of the Year has been awarded every year since 1990. The awardee is appointed by Ruter Dam's CEO Marika Lundsten together with the board consisting of Gunnel Duveblad, Anna Borg, Heléne Mellquist, Karin Eliason and Eva Krutmeijer. The selection process takes into account the company's size, turnover and the female manager's degree of power and influence. Ruter Dam's board continuously monitors appointments at the highest management levels. At a jury meeting, it is decided which woman has been promoted to the highest position with the greatest responsibility in Swedish business during the year.

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