Women leaders serve as mentors

Few powerful people get to leadership positions without the help of a mentor. In fact, organizations often encourage or even mandate mentorship programs so that experienced leaders impart their knowledge onto the next generation.

That's how great companies are built to last.

As part of our 13th annual Women in Business awards, we've chosen mentorship as the theme. In the pages that follow we recognize eight remarkable women who are making a difference within their organization and the community.

We also highlight the people who have helped our winners achieve success along the way.

This year's winners are diverse, both in personality and in the industries and organizations they represent. We've got two high-powered women in education, the head of the state's economic development agency, and top Pratt & Whitney and Comcast officials.

Our winners also include an entrepreneur who started her own firm from scratch, a CEO of a well-known Connecticut manufacturer, and a consultant.

As you read about Hartford Business Journal's eight remarkable women honorees, you will discover that each of them was helped along the way by a mentor who installed both personal and professional advice and perspective. Our women leaders also work hard to enrich the careers and lives of their employees.

They also make it a priority to be active in the community, stressing the importance of giving back as a way to achieve greater fulfillment.

In each of the past 13 years, Hartford Business Journal has honored eight of the region's most talented women in leadership roles throughout Central Connecticut. The winners are nominated by readers and chosen by a panel of independent judges (read more about the judges on Page 33). The honorees demonstrate a business savvy, confidence in themselves and their organizations, and a strong track record of success in the business world.

We hope you enjoy this issue and attend the celebration to be held from 11 a.m. – 1:45 p.m. on Thursday, May 14, at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford. The event will include a special conversation with Carolyn Kuan, the music director of the Hartford Symphony Orchestra.

– Greg Bordonaro


Carolyn Bligh, principal, Bligh Graphics LLC

Susan Herbst, president, University of Connecticut

Mary Ellen Jones, vice president of sales - Asia Pacific and China, Pratt & Whitney

Kristen Roberts, vice president of public relations & community investment, Comcast

Lisa Schwartz, vice president, Integrity Merchant Solutions

Catherine Smith, commissioner, State Department of Economic & Community Development

Nivea Torres, superintendent of schools, CT Technical High School System

Carol Wallace, chairman, president and CEO, Cooper-Atkins Corp.

About the Judges

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