Women’s Initiative

Get Involved

The Women’s Initiative hosts annual fundraising and member events to drive awareness of our philanthropic and leadership group, highlight our support of adolescent girls, and raise funds to increase our impact.

Power of the Purse


Power of the Purse is a fun evening of camaraderie and solidarity to ignite positive change for women and girls. Enjoy an auction of designer purses and engage with like-minded supporters.


4th Annual Power of the Purse Auction

SAVE-THE-DATE: June 8, 2021; 5-7PM

AC Hotel – outside Pavilion

Download the Save-the-Date


Virtual and in-person program

Online auction

Suggested $50 donation – registration details coming soon!



Marianne Felice, M.D.

Professor Emerita Pediatrics and OB/GYN, UMass Medical School and Former Chair Pediatrics, UMass Memorial Health Care

Tamara Lundi, MHA/LCSW

President, Community Healthlink, UMass Memorial Health Care


Consider donating a new designer purse or gift certificate for our auction. Download the Auction Donation Form.

Contact emily.mccann@unitedwaycm.org for sponsorship opportunities.


Watch all the fun from our 3rd Annual Power of the Purse virtual event on June 30, 2020.


Lead Sponsor:

Support Sponsors:

Becker College
Coghlin Electrical
Cornerstone Bank
Fallon Health
Fidelity Bank


Marketing Sponsors:


Media Sponsors:

Harvard Pilgrim Health Care
Main Street Bank
Seven Hills Foundation
Carol and Michael Sleeper
Webster Five









Stepping Up for Girls


A celebration of women’s philanthropy, leadership, and empowerment of adolescent girls, Stepping Up for Girls is the Women’s Initiative’s signature fundraiser to support future programming. The event highlights our funded programs, celebrates local women leaders, and features testaments to the possibilities of the future and the progress we as a community have made in supporting girls and women.


19th Annual Stepping Up for Girls Celebration

SAVE-THE-DATE: Tuesday, October 19, 2021

More details coming soon!


Watch all the excitement from our 18th Annual Stepping Up for Girls Week-Long Virtual Celebration on November 10, 2020. Check out the recording on our YouTube page.


Leadership Awards

The Women’s Initiative co-founders, Lois Green and Meridith Wesby, were leadership role models for many young women and their vision was to strengthen young girls and empower women. Named in their honor, the Lois B. Green Leadership Award and Meridith Wesby Young Leader Award recognize female leaders in our community.

WI Leadership Award Past Recipients

2006 Val Loring Monaye Leathers
2007 Marcy Reed Katarzyna Koscielska
2008 Marianne Felice, MD Iris Sanxhaku
2009 Suzanne Patton Hanh T. Lam
2010 Colleen O’Brien Andrea Siemaszko
2011 Patty Eppinger Dianara Nagrone, Shaleah Morgan, Yalitza Garcia
2013 Maureen Binienda Sabbatina Konadu
2014 Susan Mailman McKenzie Gratton
2015 Phyllis Pollack Tereza Ngendahoruri
2016 Maureen Gray Katherine Esparza
2017 Patsy Lewis Darhianys “Lula” Bethancourt
2018 Lucia Knoles Vianna Mercedes
2019 Kathleen Orengo Elizabeth Oluokun
2020 Liz Hamilton Chantale Zuzi

2020 Sponsors

Signature Sponsor:                                                                                                                                        


Lead Sponsor:

Corporate Sponsors:
Little House Capital

UMass Memorial Health Care


Support Sponsors:                                                                                                                            

Assumption College

Bay State Savings Bank
Becker College
Coghlin Electrical
Cornerstone Bank
Fallon Health
Fidelity Bank
Harvard Pilgrim Health Care


Networking Sponsors:      

College of the Holy Cross

Kerri A. Melley – Commonwealth Financial Group
LLB Architects

Main Street Bank
National Grid
Seven Hills Foundation
Carol and Michael Sleeper
Webster Five
Worcester State University


Media Sponsors:      

WICN Public Radio

Worcester Business Journal

Member Celebrations

The Women’s Initiative hosts member events throughout the year to give thanks to the hundreds of annual members and meet new supporters. Join our mailing list or follow us on FaceBook to get information on our next member event.