Indian author and activist Arundhati Roy is ranked third and PepsiCo's India-born chief Indira Nooyi 10th in Forbes list of the world's 30 most inspiring women that also features Mother Teresa and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Topping the "30 Utterly Inspiring Role Models" list, compiled by Forbes Woman, is TV show host Oprah Winfrey, one of the world's richest people, who was named the Most Powerful Celebrity by the US business magazine last month.
"Winfrey's role model status extends beyond her professional career; her philanthropic work, including the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls, is just as inspiring," Forbes said.
"Role models mean different things to different people - some of us look for guidance in business, some in our personal lives, some of us strive to make the world a better place each day, some admire trailblazers," it said.
Others named in the list include actor Angelina Jolie, former US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice, first lady Michelle Obama and author JK Rowling.
As a single mother, Rowling took to writing stories about a young wizard in a coffee shop and built one of the top-earning literary franchises ever, inspiring movies that have grossed more than $5 billion, spin-off books, theme parks and more, noted Forbes.
Also featured is actress and model Lauren Hutton, who "shows that aging gracefully and naturally is possible, and can even be glamorous," it said recalling "when she posed nude at age 61 for Big magazine, she said she did it for other women, 'I want them not to be ashamed of who they are when they're in bed.'"
"In the sports arena, race car driver Danica Patrick shows girls and women that females are just as fast as men, while Williams sisters Venus and Serena set examples of athleticism and power on and off the court.
"Their personal histories, outlooks and missions may be different, but each role model sets an example of how to be the best women we possibly can be, Forbes said.