Special/Signature Issues » 2011 Power List

6. Michael Szymanczyk

Altria Group Chairman and CEO

He’s the big honcho at Altria Group, and by default Philip Morris USA, but the guy seems as exciting as cigarette-pack foil. But who really cares when he opens the purse strings of the country’s largest maker of death sticks? Altria doled out nearly $20 million to nonprofits and schools in Virginia, mostly in Richmond, and is a major arts donor, helping bankroll the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts’ recent Picasso exhibit. Altria is also joining the push for a new regional children’s hospital (read: big donor). Szymanczyk sent his employees to clean up the Arts District, even if we don’t really know where it is. Really, Altria is painting murals on traffic utility boxes! So smoke ’em if you got ’em!

2010 Ranking: 5

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