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Guest Name
Barbara Feign
Barbara Feign
Guest Biography

As a young German-speaking refugee who fled with her parents from Nazi Germany in 1940 at the onset of World War II, Barbara Sommer Feigin spent her childhood and teenage years in tiny Chehalis, Washington, yearning to become an “authentic” American girl.

Feigin’s parents impressed upon her the power of education to open doors to opportunity. With the help of scholarships and work grants, she attended Whitman College, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science. She then completed a graduate program in business run jointly by Harvard Business School and Radcliffe Graduate School at a time when women were not admitted to the Harvard Business School.

Encouraged by her parents’ admonition to “dream big, work hard, and never quit,” Feigin became a pioneering executive who found success in a completely male-dominated business—advertising—when career-building opportunities for women were virtually nonexistent. In her illustrious thirty-year career at Grey Advertising (now Grey Global Group), she solidified her reputation as a visionary thinker. In all her years as a senior advertising executive and a corporate director, she was more often than not the only woman in the room. In 2017, Feigin was named one of the century’s Legendary Pioneers by Grey.

Feigin and her husband, Jim, built a strong, loving family of three sons, including identical twins. Their lives were shattered when Jim had two very serious strokes when he was quite young. For the next twenty-five years, she was Jim’s caregiver-in-chief. The family’s strong bonds and great love for Jim helped them navigate this traumatic time.

Feigin currently lives in New York City.