It was an inspirational morning as The North Shore Chamber of Commerce celebrated the achievements of five exceptional women during our 2023 Diamond Awards breakfast on Aug. 23 at the Kernwood Country Club in Salem.
The Diamond Award recipients are recognized for their commitment and passion for leading with purpose, empowering women, serving others and making an impact professionally and personally.
The 2023 honorees are:
Mary Anne Clancy, Senior Vice President, Marketing and Communications, Institution for Savings
A Newburyport resident, Mary Anne served as mayor of that city and spent 10 years serving on the School Committee. She is active in numerous organizations in Newburyport, having previously served on the boards for the Firehouse Center for the Arts, the Anna Jaques Hospital Community Health Foundation, and the Newburyport Education Foundation.
She is a member of the North Shore Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and is co-chair of the Chamber’s Thrive initiative.
Renee Connolly, Chief Diversity Equity & Inclusion Officer, Merck KGaA / Millipore Sigma
Renee, who lives in Salem, leads the DE&I department of an organization of 66,000-plus employees globally. She is also active in her community and serves on the Board of Directors for the American Cancer Society and Home for Little Wanderers. Renee has also been involved in the American Diabetes Association and the MassBioEd Foundation.
A graduate of Ithaca College, Renee is on the Board of Directors for the Mass Conference For Women and the International Mass Women’s Forum.
MaryAnn “Mo” Levasseur, President, Profile Research
Mo, who lives in Rowley, is a certified private investigator. Committed to mentoring and assisting others however she can, Mo is an active member, and former president, of North Shore Women Connect (formerly North Shore Women in Business). She is also a board member of the North Shore Chamber of Commerce and leads its Ambassadors Program.
In her hometown, Mo started a nonprofit, Solace for Stephanie, which helps individuals – both financially and emotionally – who have been diagnosed with cancer. Since 2010, Solace for Stephanie Foundation has helped 104 people with cancer and awarded 18 scholarships. Levasseur also serves on the town’s Personnel Advisory Committee.
Raminder Luther, Dean, Bertolon School of Business, Salem State University
Dr. Luther, a Winchester resident, was appointed dean of the Bertolon School of Business in February 2022. She had served as interim dean since May 2020, and prior to that, she served as professor of finance in the school for 22 years.
Prior to joining Salem State, Raminder served as a manufacturing operations manager for a Fortune 100 company and a marketing engineer for a For-tune 500 company in India. She has a PhD in finance from the University of Mississippi, an MBA in marketing from FMS, University of Delhi, and a BS in electrical engineering from Panjab University. She is also a member of the North Shore Chamber’s Thrive Advisory Council.
Mary Speta, Executive Director, Amirah Inc.
As executive director of the Beverly-based nonprofit providing exit and aftercare services to women who have experienced prostitution, sex trafficking, and commercial sexual exploitation, Mary calls upon her own lived experience. She incorporates her research to help shape policy and is a respected voice in the movement to dispel myths and misconceptions. Speta personally connects with clients, offering a supportive, empowering environment while mentoring women on their road to recovery.
Mary is a candidate in the Doctor of Law and Policy program at Northeastern University. She also holds a master’s degree in arts and nonprofit administrative sciences from Boston University and completed her undergraduate studies at Gordon College. She sits on the Massachusetts Governor’s Commission to Address Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, and Human Trafficking and serves on multiple legislative advisory and service provision committees throughout New England as a policy advisor and consultant on prostitution and intersectional issues.
Thank you to our Diamond Awards Breakfast sponsors: Platinum Sponsors: the Institution for Savings and The Massachusetts Conference for Women; Gold Sponsors: Unicare, Windover Construction and Solomon Private Wealth; Silver Sponsors: Millipore Sigma, North Shore Bank, Silver Lining Solutions and Eastern Bank, and Bronze Sponsors: McLane Middleton, Cataldo Ambulance, Constitution Financial Partners, Tinti & Navins Inc., DMS Designs LLC and ENBRIDGE.