Marilyn Carlson Nelson

Former Chair and CEO, Carlson
Current Co-CEO, Carlson Holdings, Inc.

Marilyn Carlson Nelson is former chair and chief executive officer of Carlson, a global travel company.

Marilyn served as co-chair of the World Economic Forum, chair of the National Women’s Business Council and chair of the U.S. Travel and Tourism Advisory Board. Forbes named her one of “The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women.” U.S. News and World Report called her one of “America’s Best Leaders.” Under Marilyn’s leadership, Carlson became the first global travel and hospitality company in North America to sign the international Code of Conduct to protect children from sexual exploitation in the travel industry. She and Carlson were recently honored by the White House for pioneering work to combat human trafficking.

Nelson serves as Chair of Inspire Medical, Secretary of the National Endowment for Democracy.  Nelson is an emeritus board member of the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy, ExxonMobil, the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and the United Nations Global Compact.  She is former chair of the Mayo Clinic Board of Trustees, chair of the Minnesota Orchestra and former co-chair of the Super Bowl Host Committee.

Nelson graduated from Smith College with a degree in international economics and studied at the Sorbonne in Paris as well as the Institut des Hautes Etudes Economiques et Politiques in Geneva.

Learn more about Marilyn Carlson Nelson by watching her induction video from 2008.