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We, the People Behind the People

Executive assistants—gatekeepers to CEOs, captains of industry, and other grand pooh-bahs—assemble.


Victoria Louise Rabin

(1 of 8)

Michelle Parise

(2 of 8)

Robin Guido

(3 of 8)

Cindi Baca

(4 of 8)

Stacey Speizer

(5 of 8)

Shari Knight

(6 of 8)

Terri Guess

(7 of 8)

Danielle Hill

(8 of 8)

See all the Affinities photo shoots here.

Anyone who’s ever worked in an office—any office—knows who the boss really is. “There’s no other role out there that can even compare to it, other than something like a copilot, a running mate, or a First Lady,” says Victoria Louise Rabin, a former executive assistant for a London hedge funder and the founder of the Executive Assistants Organization, a nationwide professional group that brings its conference to San Francisco this February. EAs have so much responsibility (that also shifts shape by the minute) that some in the industry have begun pushing for their title to be changed to strategic partner, an attempt to reframe what sounds like a stepping-stone position as the rock that it really is. Although the job is demanding, the rewards keep it worthwhile. Cindi Baca, EA for eBay’s president and CEO, has stayed in her position since 2006. “There is rarely a day that I leave work and don’t feel like I add value,” she says. “So that’s really nice.”


Originally published in the December issue of San Francisco 

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