IBM (NYSE: IBM) Chair and CEO Ginny Rometty is No. 1 and GSK’s Dierdre Connelly is No. 30 on the latest list of the “Most Powerful Women” in business from Fortune.

Meanwhile, Duke’s new CEO Lynn Good premiers at No. 16.

The top honor is a repeat for Rometty, who certainly has her hands full in the ongoing transition of Big Blue into a very software-and-services focused company with a lot less emphasis on hardware. (And, we must add, a shrinking number of employees in the U.S.)

Says Fortune about Rometty:

“In her second year as CEO, Rometty is sinking IBM’s resources into commercializing Watson, the Jeopardy-playing supercomputer. Rometty believes that Watson, a machine that can not only crunch numbers but also learn things, represents new sales opportunities for Big Blue. She’s also pushing into underserved markets—Africa, for example—and picking up new customers in marketing and finance, to keep the 102-year-old tech company ahead of the competition.”

The news was not as good for Connelly, who runs North America operations for GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE: GSK). She dropped four spots from a year ago. Notes Fortune:

“Sales in Connelly’s $11 billion unit were flat in 2012, but she outperformed GSK, which saw revenue decline 4.6%. Recent FDA approvals could help revive sales; GSK has the go-ahead on meds to combat chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, a leading cause of death in the U.S.”

Duke’s Good vaulted to No. 16 after being named CEO just two months ago. Fortune observes:

“In July, Good vaulted from CFO to CEO of the largest U.S. electric utility. Her mission: to steady the ship after Duke’s merger with Progress Energy, executive departures, and an investigation into whether Duke misled state regulators about management of the combined company.”

Youngest on the list is Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer, who is 38. She is rated eighth.

Of the 50 women, 11 are under 50 and six are over 60.

Also on the list from IBM is Bridget Van Kralingen, Big Blue’s senior vice president of Global Business Services, at No. 28.

IBM employs some 10,000 people across North Carolina. GSK operates its North American headquarters in RTP. Duke is based in Charlotte.

Other North Carolina Connections

Fidelity’s Abigail Johnson came in 10th, and co-worker Kathleen Murphy is ranked 33rd.

Safra Catz of Oracle (the new owner of Tekelec in Morrisville) is 14th.

Amy Schulman of Pfizer is 43rd.

The entire list can be read online.