Barbara Bowles
United States
President, Landers Bowles Family Foundation; Retired Presiding Director, WEC Energy Group; Retired CEO and Chair, The Kenwood Group, Inc.;2019-2020 Visionary Awards Selection Committee Co-chair

Presenter: Visionary Awards Celebration

In 2007, Barbara Landers Bowles, retired as Vice Chair of Profit Investment Management where she managed its midcap portfolios.  After an illustrious career in the investment management arena, she left to pursue her longtime goal of establishing and funding the Landers Bowles Family Foundation that focuses on charity related to education.  She was the founder and served as Chief Executive Officer and Chief Investment Officer of The Kenwood Group, Inc. from 1989 until it was acquired by Profit in January of 2006.  From 1984 to 1989, Barbara served as Corporate Vice President of Kraft, Inc. and headed the investor relations department.


Barbara, a Nashville native, holds an M.B.A. degree in Finance from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business and a B.A. degree in Mathematics with Honors from Fisk University.  She received the Chartered Financial Analyst designation in 1977.


She is the retired presiding director or WEC Energy group. Barbara now serves as a director of several corporations and organizations including: the Museum of Science and Industry, Council of the Booth School of Business at University of Chicago, and senior director of the Chicago Urban League. She also served as Chair of the Board of Trustees of Fisk University from 2013 until the end of 2017.


Barbara was named a HistoryMaker in 2002. In 2003, Barbara was honored with the Alumni of the Year Award from the African American MBA Association of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and in February 2008, received the Chicago African American History Maker Award from the DuSable Museum of Chicago. She received the Midwest Regional UNCF award in 2015. In addition to mentoring young people, Barbara enjoys bridge and tennis.  She and her husband Earl are residents of the Hyde Park-Kenwood Community of Chicago.