Skip to main content

Eileen C. McDonnell of Penn Mutual Named 2017 United Way Women’s Leadership Initiative Honoree

PHILADELPHIA (March 1, 2017) – Eileen C. McDonnell, chairman and chief executive officer of The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company, will be presented with the 2017 Women’s Leadership Initiative Award during United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey’s (UWGPSNJ) annual Women’s Leadership Initiative (WLI) Gala at the Crystal Tea Room in Philadelphia on March 22, 2017. This award is presented annually to a female leader who has given her time, talent and resources to support the work of United Way throughout the region.

“Eileen has served as a leader in the insurance and technology fields throughout her career, which is a tremendous accomplishment. Yet, it is her dedication to empowering women to learn, grow and achieve their goals that truly sets Eileen apart as a community leader,” said Jim Cawley, president and CEO, UWGPSNJ. “We are very pleased to recognize Eileen’s excellent commitment to philanthropy, volunteerism and advocacy, and to showcase the power of women’s leadership in making our region stronger and more vibrant.”

In 2013, Eileen McDonnell was named chairman and chief executive officer of Penn Mutual. She joined the company in 2008 as Chief Marketing Officer. Prior, she served as president of New England Financial, a wholly owned subsidiary of MetLife, and senior vice president of the Guardian Life Insurance Company. Eileen is a former member of the Master of Science in Management faculty at The American College in Bryn Mawr, Pa., where she held the newly endowed chair for Women and Financial Services and authored “Marketing Financial Services to Women.” Currently, she serves on the Board of Managers of Janney Montgomery Scott LLC, the Board of Universal Health Services, Inc., the Advisory Board of Vision 2020 and the Drexel University LeBow College of Business Center for Corporate Governance Advisory Board. She holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and computer science from Molloy College, and an MBA in finance and investments from Adelphi University. In 2011, she received an honorary doctor of laws (LL.D.) degree from Molloy College.

“I’m humbled to receive this award and hope that it inspires all to serve others with purpose and passion,” McDonnell said. “The Girls Today, Leaders Tomorrow program is all about women empowering other young women, and I’m proud to support this life-changing work.”

Annually, this event raises funds to support the Girls Today, Leaders Tomorrow (GTLT) program, which helps girls in grades 7 through 12 attending schools in underserved communities to stay on track to graduate high school prepared for college and career. Since the inception of the program 13 years ago, the WLI in Southeastern Pennsylvania has raised more than $4 million to support the GTLT program and nonprofit agencies serving women and girls.

McDonnell will be the 14th recipient of the WLI Award, joining a prestigious list including: Jami Wintz McKeon, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP; Rev. Dr. Lorina Marshall-Blake, Independence Blue Cross; Karen Dougherty Buchholz, Comcast Corporation; Mary Stengel Austen, Tierney; Charisse Lillie, Comcast Corporation and Comcast Foundation; Molly D. Shepard, The Leader’s Edge/Leaders By Design; and Harriet Weiss, CRW Graphics.

In addition, during the gala, the WLI Next Generation Leader Award will be presented to PwC’s Miriam Shou for her exemplary commitment to volunteerism and service, and outstanding professional success. It will be the second time this award will be presented to a female leader under 35 who has not only accomplished remarkable professional success, but also shares a deep commitment to GIVE, ADVOCATE and VOLUNTEER. As a director at PwC, Shou co-leads the data analytics practice and spearheads professional development initiatives for practitioners from diverse backgrounds. In the community, Miriam lends her experience and leadership to projects aimed at helping youth and families succeed.

The 2017 Women’s Leadership Initiative Gala is presented by Independence Blue Cross. The event begins at 5:00 p.m., followed by dinner and an award presentation emceed by NBC10 news anchor Tracy Davidson at 6:30 p.m. Additional sponsors of the 2017 Women’s Leadership Initiative Gala include Enterprise Holdings, Bryn Mawr Trust, Comcast, NBC10, Telemundo62, and Comcast Spectacor, Deloitte, Janney and Penn Mutual.

Sponsorships and individual tickets are available now and can be purchased by calling 215-665-2417 or contacting . More information can be found at and on social media @PhillySJUnited.

Sign-up for our mailing list

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.