NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Women have been a mainstay in the modern workplace for the better part of a century, yet still earn a fraction of what men do.
The numbers speak volumes. In his recent State of the Union Address, President Barack Obama noted women make an average of 23 cents on the dollar less than men, yet two-thirds of American families rely on a female wage for a significant share of total household income.
Separately, in its most recent deep-dive into the data, the U.S. Bureau of Labor found that though 2012 median earnings for both sexes averages $768 per week, female workers earn only 89% of the total at $691 per week.
Where women workers hold the jobs isn't an even spread, either. Females represent nearly two-thirds of minimum wage workers, according to the National Women's Law Center.
And there's little progress in rectifying this through a trickle-down approach; things aren't much changing at the top. A recent survey by feminist research firm Catalyst shows women only occupy 14.6% of the top executive positions at Fortune 500 companies, barely a nudge higher than 14.3% in 2012.
While the fight to achieve financial parity continues, in the least it's comforting to know some have managed to not only break through the glass ceiling but are now shattering it with pointed heel.
At most, it can be a rallying call to others to never stop fighting, to demand recognition of worth, until true equality exists at the water cooler, in the boardroom, in every corner of the world.
Meet your next role models. These are the 10 highest-paid female executives in America.
N.B. All compensatory figures sourced from Bloomberg data.
1. Safra Ada Catz -Oracle Corporation (ORCL)
Position: President and Chief Financial Officer
Industry: Enterprise software (Technology)
Annual compensation: $51.7 million total compensation with a salary of $950,000
Catz has served as Oracle Corporation's board member since October 2001, president since January 2004, and chief financial officer since April 2011, and has overseen five years of consecutive year-over-year profit increases.
In fiscal 2013, she earned a minimum 40% higher than any other female executive officer of a company in the S&P 500.
2. Marissa Mayer - Yahoo! (YHOO)
Position: Chief Executive Officer, President and Board Member
Industry: Internet (Technology)
Annual compensation: $36.6 million total compensation with a salary of $454,862
Prior to Mayer's move to Yahoo!, she worked several positions at Google (GOOG), most recently as Vice President of Google Product Search. In her 13-year tenure at the world's largest search engine, Mayer was responsible for product development, design and strategy, including for services such as Google Maps, Street View and Google's Doodle program.
Mayer was the twentieth employee to be hired at a still-nascent Google in 1999.
Upon her appointment at Yahoo!, she was the twentieth female CEO at the helm of a Fortune 500 firm.
3. Irene B. Rosenfeld -- Mondelez International (MDLZ)
Position: Chairman and CEO
Industry: Food processing (Consumer goods)
Annual compensation: $28.8 million total compensation with a salary of $1.55 million
Rosenfeld holds the top job at Mondelez International, known for brands such as Cadbury and Oreo. Prior to that, she worked as CEO and chairman of its predecessor Kraft Foods (KRFT) and spearheaded the decision to spin-off Mondelez to focus on snacks, leaving its grocery operations to Kraft.
4. Sheryl Sandberg -- Facebook (FB)
Position: Chief Operating Officer and Board Member
Industry: Social media (Technology)
Annual compensation: $26.2 million total compensation with a salary of $321,128
Moonlighting as author of bestselling motivational book Lean In, Sandberg's day job is as chief operating officer of Facebook. Similar to Mayer, Sandberg worked her way up the ranks at Google from 2001 to 2008. Sandberg's most recent position at Google was as vice president of global online sales & operations.
5. Wellington J. Denahan-Norris -- CEO, Annaly Capital (NLY)
Position: Chairman and CEO
Industry: Mortgage real estate investment trust (Finance)
Annual compensation: $25.8 million total compensation with a salary of $3 million
Denahan-Norris has served as CEO of Annaly Capital Management since November 2012, in addition to her roles as chief investment officer and chief operating officer at Annaly's fixed-income investments subsidiary Fixed Income Discount Advisory Company. She has held the position of director since Annaly was founded in 1996.
6. Jane Elfers -- CEO and President, Children's Place Retail (PLCE)
Position: President and CEO
Annual compensation: $17.2 million total compensation with a salary of $1.08 million
Elfers has served as CEO of Children's Place Retail Stores, the kids apparel and accessories retailer, since January 2010. Prior to her appointment, she worked at president and CEO for Lord & Taylor. Elfers has spent a quarter of a decade in the retail industry, beginning her career as a buyer for Macy's (M).
7. Virginia Rometty -- CEO, IBM (IBM)
Position: CEO, Chairman and President
Industry: IT and software services (Technology)
Annual compensation: $16.2 million total compensation with a salary of $1.5 million
Rometty has held the role of CEO, president and chairman of the board since 2012, but has remained with the software company since 1981. Since her start she has worked her way through the ranks, most recently as SVP and group executive for sales, marketing and strategy. Under her leadership, Rometty spearheaded the Growth Markets segment which is forecast to generate up to 30% of IBM's total revenue by next year.
8. Meg Whitman -- President and CEO, Hewlett-Packard (HPQ)
Position: President and CEO
Industry: Hardware (Technology)
Annual compensation: $15.4 million total compensation with a salary of $1 million
Before joining Hewlett-Packard in 2011, Whitman served 10 years as CEO of eBay, starting her position in its early days in 1998. In 2010, Whitman made a run for the governorship of California, one of the largest self-funded campaigns in U.S. political history, but lost to Jerry Brown.
9. Renee J. James -- Executive VP, Intel (INTC)
Position: Executive VP and General Manager of Software and Services
Industry: Semiconductors and chips (Technology)
Annual compensation: $15.3 million total compensation with a salary of $650,000
James has had a long history with Intel, beginning when she started as product manager for motherboards and systems in 1987. Since then, a number of promotions have culminated in her being named president of the chipmaker in May 2013. Prior to that, she worked as executive vice president and general manager of software and services.
10. Mary Callahan Erdoes - Divisional CEO, JPMorgan Chase (JPM)
Position: CEO of Asset Management
Industry: Banking (Finance)
Annual compensation: $14.7 million total compensation with a salary of $750,000
As CEO of JPMorgan's asset management leg since September 2009, Erdoes has overseen the management of a portfolio worth $1.5 trillion and achieved the division's record fiscal revenue growth. Erdoes joined the investment bank in 1996 as head of fixed income, which catered to high-net-worth individuals, foundations and endowments.