Past Elly Award Honorees

2019 Honorees

Eleanor Holmes Norton

Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton is a civil rights and feminist leader, a former professor of law at Georgetown University, and represents the District of Columbia in the U.S. House of
Representatives. Before serving in Congress, President Jimmy Carter appointed Norton to serve as the first woman to chair the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and two New York City mayors appointed her as the first woman to chair the New York City Human Rights Commission. Her work as a civil rights activist began as a student with the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) in Mississippi. Her work for D.C. statehood today continues her lifelong struggle for civil rights. Norton currently serves as the Chair of the House Subcommittee on Highways and Transit.

Muriel Fox

Muriel Fox, board chair of Veteran Feminists of America, is former
executive vice president of Carl Byoir & Associates, one of America’s three largest public relations firms. She was a co-founder and public relations chair of the
National Organization for Women in 1966, acting as the communicator who introduced the new
women’s movement to the media. In 1976, Business Week Magazine’s
list of 100 Top Corporate Women described Muriel as the “top-
ranking woman in public relations.” Muriel is also co-founder of Legal Momentum, formerly the NOW Legal Defense & Education Fund. She is a graduate of Barnard
College, and in 1985 she received a Distinguished Alumna Award.
She now resides in Kendal on Hudson in Westchester County, NY, where she serves on the
Residents Council.

Katie Couric

Katie Couric is an award-winning journalist, producer, New York Times bestselling author, cancer advocate, podcast host, and documentary filmmaker. She was co-anchor of the Today Show on NBC for 15 years before going to CBS and becoming the first woman anchor of a nightly news broadcast. After CBS, Katie moved to serve as the Global News Anchor at Yahoo News, where she interviewed prominent political and cultural figures as well as covering breaking news. In 2015, Katie founded Katie Couric Media, her production company which centers around scripted and non-scripted projects that are committed to creating smart, trustworthy, relatable content that aims to tell the stories that need to be brought to awareness.

2018 Honorees

Deidre Quinn

DEIRDRE QUINN, Visionary • Philanthropist • Advocate for Education • CEO and Co-Founder of Lafayette 148 New York, a women’s fashion brand known for sophisticated, clean-lined designs • Started sewing in fourth grade and turned her hobby into a passion • Worked in executive positions early in career at Donna Karan, Escada and Liz Claiborne, giving her a strong base for rethinking how the business of fashion should operate • Has created one of the fashion industry’s rare vertically integrated brands by building Lafayette 148’s own workshop and production facility in Shantou, China • Passionate about giving back and enriching the world through education • Provides free private education to children of Shantou through the School of Dreams, an elementary school funded by Lafayette 148 • Associate Partner with Partnership for NYC • Member of FIT Board of Trustees and C200 • Proud member of the Women’s Forum of New York.

Sheila C. Johnson

SHEILA C. JOHNSON, Media Mogul • Powerhouse Producer • Hospitality Entrepreneur
• Humanitarian • Founder and CEO of Salamander Hotels & Resorts • Vice-Chairman of Monumental Sports and Entertainment, the only African-American woman to have ownership in three professional sports teams • Co-founder of WE Capital, supports female-led enterprises to advance transformational social change • Founding partner of Black Entertainment Television • Documentary producer • 2015 Forbes Magazine’s Top 50 America’s Richest Self-Made Women • Fervent supporter of education and the arts • Board member, Jackie Robinson Foundation and International African American Museum, Greater Washington Partnership • Member, Leadership Council at Harvard Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership • Former global ambassador for CARE • Founder and chair of the Middleburg, VA Film Festival • Accomplished violinist.

2017 Honorees

Daryl Roth

DARYL ROTH, award-winning Broadway producer, is a leading innovator in the theatre world, championing the most challenging and thought-provoking work onstage. The producer of over 100 on and off Broadway productions, Daryl has received 27 Tony Award nominations, winning 10 Tony Awards and has produced seven Pulitzer Prize-winning plays: Anna in the Tropics; August: Osage County; Clybourne Park; How I Learned to Drive; Proof; Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women; and Wit. Other highlights include the Tony and Olivier Award winning Best Musical Kinky Boots; Nora and Delia Ephron’s hit Love, Loss, and What I Wore; and Larry Kramer’s seminal play about the AIDS crisis, The Normal Heart. Current Broadway productions include Paula Vogel’s new play Indecent; the new musical Groundhog Day; and revivals of Hello, Dolly; Present Laughter; and Sunset Boulevard.

Carolyn B. Maloney

CAROLYN B. MALONEY, U.S. Representative for New York’s 12th Congressional district, is a national leader on women’s issues, financial services, national security, and the economy. A champion for domestic and international women’s issues, Carolyn authored and passed legislation targeting the “demand” side of sex trafficking; providing annual mammograms for women on Medicare; and increasing funding to process DNA rape kits. She is the House sponsor of the ERA and is working to establish the National Women’s History Museum in D.C. As a senior member of the House Financial Services Committee and the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, and the Ranking House member of the Joint Economic Committee, Carolyn has authored more than 70 measures, including the Credit CARD Act and the 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, and obtained significant funding to build the Second Avenue Subway.

Mariska Hargitay

MARISKA HARGITAY is an actress, director, producer and advocate, who has used her Emmy award-winning role as Olivia Benson on NBC’s Law & Order: SVU to shed light on sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse. In 2004, she took her commitment to a higher level by founding the Joyful Heart Foundation, a leading national organization working to transform society’s response to this violence, support survivors’ healing—and, ultimately, end this violence forever. The current focus of her advocacy is the national untested rape kit backlog. She testified on the topic before the U.S. Congress in 2010, and has since produced I AM EVIDENCE, a documentary film on the topic in partnership with HBO that recently premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival.

2016 Honorees

Phillipa Soo

Phillipa Soo, star of Broadway’s critically acclaimed show “Hamilton,” is a 2016 Tony Award nominee in the category of Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical and winner of the Lucille Lortel Award in 2015 for Lead Actress in a Musical for her portrayal of Eliza Hamilton. After graduating from Juilliard in 2012, Soo was cast as ‘Natasha Rostova’ in the Ars Nova production of Dave Malloy’s “Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812,” and appeared on the NBC television series “Smash” in the role of Lexi. Along with the cast of Hamilton, Phillipa founded The Eliza Project to help young teens at Graham Windham, the nation’s oldest child welfare agency, founded in NYC in 1806 by Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton and others.

Rosie Rios

Rosie Rios serves as the 43rd Treasurer of the United States. She has direct oversight over the U.S. Mint, the Bureau of Engraving and Printing and Fort Knox and is a key liaison with the Federal Reserve. She is especially passionate about supporting women in finance and community development. Prior to her confirmation, Rosie was Managing Director of Investments at MacFarlane Partners. In November 2008, Treasurer Rios started her service in the federal government as part of the Treasury/Federal Reserve Transition Team during the height of the financial crisis. It was during her time on the Transition Team when Treasurer Rios started the initiative to place a woman on our U.S. currency for the first time in over a century.

Kay Koplovitz

Kay Koplovitz is founder and former Chairman and CEO of USA Networks and co-founder and Chairman of Springboard Enterprises, a non-profit accelerator that has  fostered the investment of more than $7 billion in women-led firms. In 2016, she co-founded the Springboard Fund. Nominated by President Clinton as Chairman of the National Women’s Business Council, Kay is the author of Bold Women, Big Ideas and Been There, Run That, an anthology of best practices from Springboard Enterprises’ expert network of thought leaders. Kay serves on corporate boards, including CA Technologies, Time Inc., and ION Media Networks and serves as a trustee for The Paley Center for Media, the International Tennis Hall of Fame and the College of Letters and Science at the University of Wisconsin.

2015 Honorees

Emily Rafferty

Emily Rafferty, President Emerita, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, recently stepped down as President after 39 years on the staff of the nation’s largest and most comprehensive art museum.  Emily has served on the Federal Reserve Bank of New York since 2011, its chairman since 2012 and was elected Chair of the National Board of Chairs in 2015. She serves as Chairwoman of NYC & Company, the City’s official tourism and marketing agency and is a member of the Board of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum. Her devotion to varied cultural, economic and philanthropic organizations and the collegial relationships she has fostered among them both here and abroad, illustrate why Emily is frequently named one of New York’s most influential women.

Tina Brown

Tina Brown is an award-winning journalist, editor, author, and currently founder and CEO of Tina Brown Live Media and Women in the World, a company dedicated to summits, salons, flash forums and debates which offer solutions to building a  better life for women and girls. Prior to this, in October 2008, Tina launched and edited the award-winning digital news site The Daily Beast with Barry Diller’s IAC. Between 1979 and 2001, she was editor-in-chief of Tatler, Vanity Fair, The New Yorker, and Talk—and later Newsweek in 2011. She also authored the 2007 best-selling biography of the Princess of Wales, The Diana Chronicles. In 2000, Queen Elizabeth awarded Tina the honor of Commander of the Order of the British Empire for her services to journalism.

2014 Honorees

Sallie Krawcheck

Sallie Krawcheck, recently named number 9 on Fast Company’s list of the “100 Most Creative People 2014,” has built a successful career as a senior corporate executive, as a research analyst and now as an entrepreneur. From her turnaround and subsequent nurturing of troubled wealth management businesses, to eliminating Wall Street conflicts of interest and advocating a true client-centered business model, Ms. Krawcheck has been referred to as one of the most successful and influential executives in financial services, having spent years as the guardian of such brands at Smith Barney, Merrill Lynch and US Trust. She often notes that “Investing in women is simply smart business” and is expressing this view through her ownership in the Ellevate companies. The Ellevate network, a global professional women’s network of over 34,000 members, is the most expansive and diverse of its kind. Ellevate Asset Management has partnered with Pax World to recently launch the Pax Ellevate Global Woman’s Index Fund, which invests in the highest-rated 400 companies in the world for advancing women, the first and only fund of its kind. She continues to advise start-up companies, focuses on education-oriented philanthropy and serves on a variety of boards.

Billie Jean King

Billie Jean King, longtime champion for social change and equality, created new inroads for men and women in sports and beyond during her legendary tennis career. Growing up playing tennis in California public parks, she won her first of a record 20 Wimbledon titles in 1961 and went on to win 39 Grand Slam singles, doubles and mixed doubles titles. She empowered women and educated men with her 1973 defeat of Bobby Riggs in the Battle of the Sexes, which has been regarded as one of the greatest moments in sports history.  Ms. King was named one of the ‘100 Most Important Americans of the 20th Century’ by Life Magazine and, in 2009, President Obama awarded her with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor. She founded the Women’s Tennis Association (1973), the Women’s Sports Foundation (1974) and co-founded World TeamTennis (1974). Ms. King sits on the boards of the Elton John AIDS Foundation, the Andy Roddick Foundation and was appointed to the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition. In 2014 she will launch the Billie Jean King  Leadership Initiative, which will address inclusion and diversity in the workplace and beyond.

2013 Honorees

Pat Mitchell

Pat Mitchell’s unparalleled career has been spent both in front of the camera and behind it, as an award-winning career journalist, producer and executive.  Currently President and CEO of the Paley Center for Media, she previously held those positions at PBS, the first woman to do so. She has anchored the news, reported for broadcast networks and, as President of CNN Productions, produced award-winning documentaries. Throughout her career, her special interest has been in engaging the power of media and storytelling as an agent of social change. The first woman to launch, produce and host her own nationally syndicated program, she continues to help break new ground for women, most recently through a series of programs and initiatives called Women@Paley and the annual TEDWomen Conference, which for three years has convened the largest live global audience of women and men of any single conference. Her many awards include multiple Emmys, five Peabody Awards and two Academy Award nominations. Inducted into the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame, she also has been honored by the Women’s Media Center with the Pat Mitchell Lifetime Achievement Award, which will be given annually in her name.

Maria Cuomo Cole

Through her work as an advocate, activist and filmmaker, Maria Cuomo Cole has had a lasting impact on several of the leading issues of our day. She is the long-time chair of HELP USA, which under her leadership has grown into the country’s largest provider of housing, employment, health and other services for the homeless. Films she has produced and directed have tackled such subjects as homelessness, domestic violence and gun violence. In 2011 she produced Living for 32, a documentary about gun violence in America. Today she is producing a national education and advocacy film project which focuses on gun safety legislation. Most recently, she was executive producer of the Academy Award-nominated The Invisible War, a groundbreaking documentary about sexual violence and rape in the military.  In New York, she serves on Mayor Bloomberg’s Task Force to Combat Domestic Violence; she’s also a director of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, Mentoring USA, as well as of HELP/ PSI. She has been recognized for her efforts on behalf of underserved communities by many organizations, and her distinguished honors include the American Red Cross Humanitarian Award, a Creative Coalition Spotlight Award and the Matrix Award from Women in Communication, Inc.

2012 Honorees

Arianna Huffington

Arianna Huffington is the president and editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media Group, a nationally syndicated columnist, and author of thirteen books. In May 2005, she launched The Huffington Post, a news and blog site that quickly became one of the most widely read, linked to, and frequently cited media brands on the Internet. In 2012, the site won a Pulitzer Prize for national reporting. In 2006, and again in 2011, she was named to the Time 100, Time Magazine’s list of the world’s 100 most influential people.  Originally from Greece, she moved to England when she was 16 and graduated from Cambridge University with an M.A. in economics. At 21, she became president of the famed debating society, the Cambridge Union. She serves on several boards that promote community solutions to social problems, including A Place Called Home, which works with at-risk children in South Central Los Angeles. She also serves on the board of EL PAÍS and the Committee to Protect Journalists.

Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel

Throughout her long career, Dr. Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel has served as a leading voice on some of the defining urban issues of our time.  A powerful force in shaping the direction of preservation, arts and cultural policy in New York City, nationally and internationally, she has brought unparalleled involvement to the arts, architecture, design and public policy through roles ranging from the writer’s desk to The White House.

As the first Director of Cultural Affairs for NYC, she was responsible for bringing the Metropolitan Opera to Central Park and the first outdoor sculpture exhibition to Bryant Park. The longest serving Landmarks Commissioner in NYC history (17 years), she was the first woman to serve as Vice Chair of the US Commission of Fine Arts, and is currently the Vice Chair of the New York State Council on the Arts.  Other noted positions include Commissioner of the American Battle Monuments Commission, founding director of both the Trust for the National Mall and the Highline, board member of the US Holocaust Memorial Museum Commission, and advisor to the Port Authority of NY/NJ for Public Art and Architecture to the World Trade Center. She is the author of 20 books on art, architecture and public policy, and the curator of eight traveling museum exhibits, one of which was circulated by the US Dept. of State to 82 countries.  As Chair of the Historic Landmarks Preservation Center, she created and underwrote NYC’s Historic District Street Signs and was the founder/creator of the Cultural Medallion program; both programs have been adopted throughout the U.S. She has produced and interviewed eight series for the A&E network, and her work has also been viewed on programs with CBS/NBC/PBS. More than 200 of her interviews have been digitized by Duke University Libraries and can be seen on You Tube and iTunes U.

2011 Honorees

Diana Taylor

Diana Taylor’s distinguished career has combined high-level positions in both the private and public sectors with significant board service.  Managing Director of Wolfensohn Fund Management, L.P. since 2007, she began her career as an investment banker with Smith Barney, Lehman Brothers and Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette, later becoming Vice President for KeySpan Energy.  Moving to the public sector, she then became Chief Financial Officer of the Long Island Power Authority. She served under Governor George Pataki as Deputy Secretary to the Governor for Housing and Finance before being appointed by him as New York State Superintendent of Banks and Chairwoman of the New York State Banking Board.  Diana is known as a strong consumer advocate and during her tenure as banks’ superintendent strengthened both oversight and tracking of illegal activities. She sits on the boards of Citigroup, Brookfield Properties and Sotheby’s and chairs several charitable organizations. Most notably, Diana is chair of the Hudson River Park Trust, ACCION International, a global microfinance organization, and is incoming chair of the YMCA of Greater New York.  She holds an AB in economics from Dartmouth College, an MBA from Columbia University and an MPH from the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia.

Evelyn H. Lauder

Founder and Chairman of The Breast Cancer Research Foundation® (BCRF), Evelyn H. Lauder has given women worldwide reason to believe that breast cancer will be defeated.  In 1992, Evelyn co-created the Pink Ribbon, which has become the universally recognized symbol of breast health worldwide. Since its inception in 1993, the BCRF has raised over $325 million to fund innovative clinical and translational research worldwide to prevent and find a cure for breast cancer.  The Foundation is currently funding 172 researchers in 12 countries across the globe. Evelyn is also Senior Corporate Vice President of The Estée Lauder Companies Inc., and so far The Estée Lauder Companies’ Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign has distributed more than 110 million pink ribbons around the world, spreading the life-saving message about the importance of breast health and early detection. Evelyn innovatively brought the company’s resources to bear in the fight, and The Estée Lauder Companies’ Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign now extends to 70 countries.  Currently head of Fragrance Development Worldwide at The Estée Lauder Companies, Evelyn is one of the country’s most prominent businesswomen and a driving force in the success of the company. As a member of the Board of Overseers at Memorial Sloan-Kettering’s Cancer Center, her efforts were instrumental in creating the Evelyn H. Lauder Breast Center, the first-ever facility devoted to offering coordinated services for one disease under one roof; the center has been used as a model not only for many other breast centers but other diseases as well. Her philanthropic work extends beyond health to issues as broad-reaching as education and inner-city schools, the environment, women’s causes and the arts. She has also contributed significantly to New York City parks through her active participation as a board member of the Central Park Conservancy. She is, in addition, an exhibited and published photographer.  Born in Vienna and a survivor of the London Blitz, Evelyn’s remarkable life exemplifies the American success story.