Laura Ducceschi receives ATHENA Leadership Award on International Women’s DayScranton Area Community Foundation’s President and CEO, Laura Ducceschi, was presented with the 2023 ATHENA Leadership Award during the International Women’s Day Luncheon on Wednesday, March 8, at Marywood University hosted by the Greater Scranton Chamber of Commerce.
President and CEO of the Greater Scranton Chamber of Commerce, Bob Durkin, and Donna Barbetti presented the ATHENA Leadership award to Laura. During his remarks, Bob Durkin noted that Laura’s leadership style is catalytic, championing initiatives that matter to the region, including issues surrounding workforce challenges and transportation barriers, and other key issues, many of which the Scranton Area Community Foundation and the Greater Scranton Chamber of Commerce collaborate closely on. Laura was also presented with a Citation from the Senate of PA, sponsored by Senator Marty Flynn and Senator Rosemary M. Brown, for contributing in a meaningful way to the Commonwealth of PA, stating, “To her great credit, Ms. Ducceschi has proven herself to be a strong community leader and role model worthy of emulation.”
Laura stated that the theme of International Women’s Day this year—equity—is particularly meaningful to her work at the Foundation because research and practice have shown that growth alone doesn’t necessarily lead to opportunity for all. She stated that it is important that community foundations and other anchor institutions invest in and elevate programs and initiatives that connect growth to opportunity—or that the connection rarely occurs. “A focus on equity forms the core of the work of Women in Philanthropy, a collective model where women give their time, talent, and treasure to create transformative opportunities for women. Women in Philanthropy is founded on the evidence-based concept that women choose to give differently and often wish to have a level of engagement with their giving. It’s based on the fact that, on average, for every dollar a woman earns, she invests 80 cents in her family. It’s based on a model that works,” Ducceschi said.
- Over $100,000 to local nonprofit organizations helping women, girls, and their families!
- $25,000 in full “STEAM Stars” Scholarships to the nationally recognized Level Up Program!
- Loan capital and training support to help launch nearly 15 women-owned businesses in NEPA!
- $300,000 has been matched to 125 graduates in the Financial Confidence program!
- Improved transportation access to health services!
- Educational resources to advance voter education and promote voter registration!
- And much, much more!
International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating women’s equality. The ATHENA Award was first presented in 1982 in Lansing, Michigan, and has grown to include presentations to more than 5,000 individuals in hundreds of cities in the United States as well as in Canada, China, Russia, and the United Kingdom. The award takes the form of a hand-cast bronze sculpture symbolizing the strength, courage, and wisdom of the recipient.