On May 9, 2011, Big Sister’s Board of Directors, Advisory Board, Young Professional Board, and special community partners gathered at the Exchange Conference Center for the 2011 Annual Meeting.
We bid a fond farewell to retiring board members and welcomed several new board members. Maria Fernandes, Government Relations Specialist at Children’s Hospital Boston, became the first person from the Young Professional Board to transition to Big Sister’s Board of Directors. Sue Hoffman, Senior Vice President of Human Resources and Chief People Officer at BJ’s Wholesale Club, recently agreed to chair the Human Resources Committee at Big Sister, adding her talents to our Board of Directors.
No changes were made to the leadership of the Board of Directors. Board officers include President Max Bardeen, Managing Director of UBS Financial Services; Chair Tim O’Brien, Senior Vice President at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts; Vice-President Sharon McNally, Chief of Staff at The Connors Family Office; Treasurer Aileen Keaney, Vice President of Finance at Audax Group; and Clerk Essence McGill Arzu, Partner at Foley Hoag LLP.
Suzanne Fay Glynn, Partner at Glynn Law Offices, retired from her role as chair of the Nominating and Governance Committee, passing the gavel to Janet Porter, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
Denise Casper, long time board member, former Big Sister and recently-elected US District Court Judge, transitioned to our Advisory Board along with former board member and steadfast supporter Robin Loporchio, Raytheon Company. We are pleased to welcome Jamie Charles, Massachusetts Appeals Court; Betsy Zuik, PNC Wealth Management; Karen Lubov, Bose Corporation; and Angelica Vargas, Disability Law Center, to the Young Professional Board.
After nominating committee and parliamentary procedures, we unveiled the 2010 Annual Report. The Report celebrates Big Sister’s accomplishments from the previous year and our 60-year history serving Greater Boston’s girls. In a special audio recording, attendees heard from one of the matches featured in the Annual Report, Little Sister Zaire and Big Sister Katie. Zaire, a fifth grader from the Josiah Quincy Elementary School, described how her Big Sister Katie has helped her discover that she is good at math and how to deal constructively with her feelings of anger and frustration. Likewise, Zaire is teaching Katie the importance of making time for the things that are important in life, the things that are more “heartfelt.”
Chief Executive Officer Deborah Re stressed how Zaire and Katie’s story reveals the core of Big Sister’s work: how a caring and supportive mentor can help a girl develop the confidence she needs to reach her full potential. Re also noted that “it takes a village” and that we could not bring our services to girls, year after year, without the support of our many community partners. She highlighted the strong partnerships Big Sister has nurtured in the community noting our relationship with the Mayor’s Office and the Boston Public School system, our collaboration with other non-profits such as Boston Center for Youth and Families and Foundation to be Named Later and our connections with local businesses and business leaders such as b.good and Ann Flannery, of Legal Sea Foods.
The evening closed with a reminder that despite our many accomplishments, much work remains to be done. There are many girls throughout Greater Boston who would benefit from the guidance of a positive mentor. In 2011, Big Sister Association aims to serve 2900 girls in our community.