Linda Parker Hudson
»BS SYSTEMS ENGINEERING, 1972
»UF HONORARY DOCTORATE IN SCIENCE, 2014
Linda Parker Hudson has transformed careers, enterprises and industries. She was one of only two pioneering women to graduate with a degree in systems engineering from the University of Florida in 1972, and went on to become the first female CEO in the defense industry and the first woman to lead a major national security operation. Named one of Fortune Magazine’s 50 Most Powerful Women in Business, Hudson is the chairman and CEO of the Cardea Group, a leadership, communications and business consultancy that accelerates the success of high-performing leaders, teams and companies. She consults top-level executives from all around the world on adaptive strategies and organizational transitions and transformations.
Hudson’s professional accomplishments and philanthropic activities have been recognized through multiple accolades and awards. She has extended her time and expertise to numerous UF boards and committees, in addition to her service on the boards of Bank of America, Southern Company and Ingersoll Rand. A Distinguished Alumna, Hudson generously supports the Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering, including her establishment of a scholarship and fellowship support fund and a leader in residence program, which brings prominent leaders from technology, academia, public policy and research to the UF campus.