Bonnie Hammer beats Zalaznick on power list

NBCU execs ranked back-to-back, each up two spots

NEW YORK -- Oprah Winfrey is the highest-ranked entertainment industry personality on Fortune's list of the 50 Most Powerful Women in business, released Wednesday. She ranks sixth as she did in last year's list, with PepsiCo chairman and CEO Indra Nooyi once again
holding the top spot.

Entertainment and tech executives are represented in various other positions as well. Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz is listed in the 10th spot (down from eight last year), followed at 15th by Disney Media Networks co-chair Anne Sweeney, who rose one spot this year ("Her latest hits include ABC's "Modern Family,"" Fortune noted), Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg who is up from 22 to 16 and MTV Networks chairman and CEO Judy McGrath who climbed two spots to
rank 18th. About McGrath, Fortune said: " Between "Jersey Shore" and the Video Music Awards, McGrath has jolted MTV out of its ratings slump."

Amid recent industry chatter about their possible future roles once cable giant Comcast acquires NBC Universal, it is particularly noteworthy that Bonnie Hammer, president of NBC Universal Cable Entertainment and Universal Cable Productions, and Lauren Zalaznick, president of NBC Universal Women and Lifestyle Entertainment Networks, once again rank back-to-back on the Fortune list. Hammer is listed as number 45, Zalaznick as 46 this year. This means a gain of two spots each for the executives waiting to hear if Comcast has new plans for them and which.

"Her hugely successful portfolio of networks includes feel-good USA and fan favorite Syfy," Fortune noted about Hammer. "She just needs to make sure to keep the hits coming for Comcast."

"This tastemaker spins gold out of reality TV, from the "Housewives" franchise to "Top Chef,"" it noted about Zalaznick. "Her Bravo and Oxygen networks continue to climb in the ratings and deliver big profits."

Amy Pascal, co-chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment, in the 47th spot (up two from 2009) and Katie Cotton, Apple vp of worldwide corporate communications, who debuted on the Fortune list at 50 round out the media and tech crowd.

Meanwhile, Fortune's list of the 25 highest-paid female executives is led by Bartz with total 2009 compensation of $47.2 million. The other media personality on the list is Martha Stewart, who ranks 20th with 2009 compensation of $9.7 million, according to Fortune.

Fortune is part of Time Warner's magazine unit.