Loras Women’s Leadership Alliance

The official launch of the Loras Women’s Leadership Alliance was held on March 21 for faculty, staff, alumni, and students gathered for this historic occasion. The mission of the recently formed Leadership Alliance is to engage women on the Loras College campus and in alumni communities, connecting or reconnecting them with the College. Supporting young women who attend or will attend Loras is their overall goal.

Loras College President Jim Collins (’84) opened the event by addressing those in attendance. President Collins then introduced Sarah Ross (’81), who also welcomed the attendees and gave an overview of the new organization and its goals.

The Women’s Leadership Alliance is guided by a volunteer board formed of alumni, faculty and staff. Current members include Nancy Zachar Fett (’90), associate professor of social work at Loras, Deb (O’Connor) Gustafson (’76), Jane (Noonan) Demmer (’76), Beth (Nischik) Mund (’96), Jamie Covell (’12), Ashley Miller (’13), Jennifer Skipper (’97), Sarah (Schroeder) Ross (’81), Theresa (Obermann) Hoffman (’81), Melissa (Fritz) Wagner (’09) and Karen (Smith) Runde (’07). Cayla Schneider, director of annual giving, and Valorie Woerdehoff (’82), director of corporate and foundation support, are assisting.

“As these women are preparing to enter the professional world, not only the knowledge they’ve gained at Loras but also the connections they form will enhance their potential for success,” Cayla Schneider said. “By forging connections between alumni, faculty and students, the Leadership Alliance builds an important network of encouragement and support.”

Loras College became co-ed in 1971. There are currently over 8,350 women who claim Loras as their alma mater. Currently, 47% of the student body is female. The Leadership Alliance hopes to connect female faculty, staff and alumni with current students in a variety of ways. Their first project is to build an award and endow a scholarship for current or potential students. The scholarships can provide a strong impact on the opportunities available for female students. The Alliance also hopes to offer other networking and social opportunities, along with mentoring and professional development.

To find out more, support or join the Loras Women’s Leadership Alliance, contact Cayla Schneider at cayla.schneider@loras.edu or 563-588-7328.