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Renowned Leadership Development Expert Speaks At Iona on Homecoming

Frances Hesselbein
NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. - Frances Hesselbein, one of the most highly respected experts in the field of contemporary leadership development, was the fourth speaker in Iona College's Advancing Ethical & Moral Leadership Lecture Series sponsored by its School of Business. Mrs. Hesselbein spoke during the College's annual Homecoming & Family Weekend on October 14 in Romita Auditorium, Ryan Library.
"We thank Mrs. Hesselbein for sharing her extensive expertise in leadership development," said William B. Lamb, Ph.D., dean of the School of Business. "Her fascinating story, drawing from vast experience in the non-profit sector, is directly in line with the intent of the ethical and moral tone of this lecture series."
“On behalf of our alumni and parents who will be on campus for Homecoming & Family Weekend, we’re very excited to have Mrs. Hesselbein speak to the Iona community,” said Paul J. Sutera, senior vice president for Advancement & External Affairs. “When the Moral & Ethical Leadership series started, Mrs. Hesselbein’s story was one we sought to have told.  We strive to put on a first-class program and in addition to our athletic events and the ribbon-cutting of the start-up location for the Hynes Institute for Entrepreneurship & Innovation, her lecture should do just that.”

The Ethical & Moral Leadership Lecture Series, launched in fall 2015, offers practical examples of ethical leadership for young people and those in the working world. Each lecture presented is in keeping with the mission, vision and values of Iona College, which commits itself to the development of graduates recognized for their ethics, creativity and problem-solving abilities along with independent and adaptable thinking. Past speakers include William McGurn, Wall Street Journal columnist and former chief speechwriter for President George W. Bush; Cindi Bigelow, president and CEO of Bigelow Tea; and Steve Forbes, chairman and editor-in-chief of Forbes Media.
Mrs. Hesselbein is the namesake for The Frances Hesselbein Leadership Forum in the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA) at the University of Pittsburgh, and the editor-in-chief of the award-winning quarterly journal, Leader to Leader. The Frances Hesselbein Leadership Forum is a continuation of the organization founded as The Peter F. Drucker Foundation for Nonprofit Management. Mrs. Hesselbein was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the United States of America’s highest civilian honor, by President Clinton in 1998 for her leadership as CEO of Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. from 1976–1990, as well as her service as “a pioneer for women, volunteerism, diversity and opportunity.” Her contributions were also recognized by the first President Bush, who appointed her to two Presidential Commissions on National and Community Service.
From 2009–2011, Mrs. Hesselbein served as the Class of 1951 Chair for the Study of Leadership at the United States Military Academy at West Point, in the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership. She was the first woman, and the first non-graduate to serve in this chair.
Also in 2009, the University of Pittsburgh introduced The Hesselbein Global Academy for Student Leadership and Civic Engagement. The Academy’s aim is to produce experienced and ethical leaders who will address critical national and international issues and advance positive social and economic initiatives throughout the world.
Mrs. Hesselbein serves on many nonprofit and private sector corporate boards, including Mutual of America Life Insurance Company, the Bright China Social Fund, California Institute of Advanced Management, and Teachers College, Columbia University Presidents Advisory Council. She served as the chairman of the National Board of Directors for Volunteers of America from 2002–2006. In December 2013, Volunteers of America honored Mrs. Hesselbein with the Maud Ballington Booth Legacy Award for a lifetime of pioneering social change.
For her exceptional work and her continued commitment to developing leaders of all ages, as demonstrated in her work with the Hesselbein Institute, Mrs. Hesselbein has been awarded Lifetime Achievement Awards from ATHENA International, Best Practice Institute, the Girl Scout Council of Greater New York, and the International Leadership Association. Mrs. Hesselbein has been inducted into the Enterprising Women Hall of Fame and is a Distinguished Daughter of Pennsylvania. Fortune Magazine named Hesselbein one of the World’s 50 Greatest Leaders in 2015.
Mrs. Hesselbein was named a senior leader at the United States Military Academy’s 2008 National Conference on Ethics in America. In 2007, Mrs. Hesselbein was awarded the John F. Kennedy Memorial Fellowship by Fulbright New Zealand and was the first recipient of the Dwight D. Eisenhower National Security Award in 2003.
Mrs. Hesselbein is the recipient of twenty-one honorary doctoral degrees. She is the coeditor of twenty-seven books in twenty-nine languages. Mrs. Hesselbein has traveled to sixty-eight countries representing the United States. She is the author of Hesselbein on Leadership, My Life in Leadership and More Hesselbein on Leadership; and most recently, the enhanced edition of Peter Drucker’s The Five Most Important Questions: Enduring Wisdom for Today’s Leaders.
Mrs. Hesselbein can be found on Twitter at
Founded in 1940, Iona College is a private, coeducational institution 20 miles north of Midtown Manhattan with a total enrollment of 4,000 students and an alumni base of more than 45,000 around the world. The College is a diverse community of learners and scholars dedicated to academic excellence and the values of justice, peace and service. Iona's School of Business is accredited by AACSB International – a highly acclaimed distinction awarded to just 5 percent of business schools worldwide.