A woman who started out as a letter carrier in 1986 has risen to become the first female postmaster general, reports Time. Megan Brennan, currently chief operating officer for the US Postal Service, will take over in February. It's no big secret that she's inheriting a troubled agency, one that posted a $5.5 billion loss in fiscal 2014. Predecessor Patrick Donahoe is stepping down after four years, and BusinessWeek suggests that he's been unfairly criticized as a "hatchet man."
Donahoe, who inherited an even bigger mess, had no choice but to reduce staff, cut hours, and close facilities, and thus was "subjected to a lot of personal criticism," writes Devin Leonard. But he also struck innovative deals with Amazon that might point the way to survival for the USPS. Brennan rose through the ranks along with Donahoe, and Leonard expects her to follow a similar path as leader. "Does she have any choice?"