Leena Nair will next month-end take over as the global CEO of Chanel, joining the ranks of Indian-origin corporate bosses who call the shots at Global Inc. Nair, 52, was the first woman and the youngest Chief Human Resources Officer of Unilever - a position she resigned from to join the iconic French luxury group.
While Indian Twitter was ecstatic about Nair’s elevation to the top post at Chanel, a particular tweet caught her attention, possibly taking her back to her childhood in Maharashtra’s Kolhapur.
She liked a tweet and a photo posted by Vijaylakshmi Nadar, a resident of Dallas, Texas. The tweet had a photo of Nair from her school days at Holy Cross Convent in Kolhapur; a class group photo.“And your school teacher Ms Jeev Chahal, from Holy Cross Convent shared this adorable class picture of yours, with the comment ‘tallest girl in the class’,” Nadar wrote, tagging Nair who acknowledged the photo with a ‘like’.
And your school teacher Ms Jeev Chahal, from Holy Cross Convent shared this adorable class picture of yours, with the comment "tallest girl in the class".
Congratulations https://t.co/RLmeQgAnI0 pic.twitter.com/IOzedhKSE1
— Vijaylakshmi Nadar (@vijnad) December 15, 2021
Leena Nair completed her schooling in Kolhapur before she earned a degree in electronics engineering from Walchand College of Engineering in Maharashtra’s Sangli.
In the early years of her career, she began working at different factories of Hindustan Unilever (HUL) in West Bengal capital Kolkata, Tamil Nadu's Ambattur and Maharashtra's Taloja.
In 1996, she was was appointed as Employee Relations Manager by HUL, and elevated as HR manager of Hindustan Lever India by 2000.She describes India-born former PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi as a friend and mentor, and is the second woman of Indian-origin to be a global CEO. Her appointment at Chanel also brings her to the league of other Indian-origin executives like Sundar Pichai, Parag Agrawal and Satya Nadella who are at the helm of top global companies.