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The leaders who started—and support—it all. 

In 1986, Mary Jo Pulte gathered a group of 30 Michigan women to discuss philanthropy and the imbalance in donations to women’s programs. At that time, only 3% of philanthropic dollars went to programs for women and girls in the United States.

Empowered to change that statistic, the women founded Michigan Women Forward, formerly known as Michigan Women’s Foundation: the only public, statewide foundation devoted to the economic and personal well-being of Michigan women and girls.

Each year, thousands of individuals, families, corporations and foundations generously donate both time and money to support MWF’s programs that provide opportunity for Michigan women to succeed.

Michigan Women Forward Team

Carolyn Cassin, President & CEO, 313.771.3512

Ann Parnis, Executive Assistant | Office Manager, 313.771.3516

Peg Tallet, Chief Operating Officer, 313.771.3513

Joyce L. Suber, Executive Director | WEI, 313.771.3514

Tanesia Greer, Admin Assistant | External Engagement | Database Manager, 313.771.3517

Andrea Davis, Corporate Facts | Accountant, 313.771.3519

Michael Canale, Portfolio Manager | WEI, 248.518.0035

Lori Wesby, Program Manager-SE Michigan, 313.356.2915

Allyson Boyle, Chief Financial Officer, 313.771.3523

Judy Welch, Executive Director-West Michigan, 616.765.4224  

Elizabeth Drain, Youth Development Programs Manager, 616.765.4515

Entrepreneur Office, 616.930.4196

Julian Darden, EIM, 517.325.5914

Michigan Women Forward Board of Trustees


Chair: Denise Christy, Marsh & McLennan Agency

Vice Chair: Stephanie Naito, Meijer

Treasurer: Mary Beth Kuderik, UAW Retiree Medical Benefits Trust

Secretary: Lisa Gustafson, Consumers Energy

President & CEO: Carolyn Cassin, Michigan Women Forward


Jocelyn K. Allen, The Allen Lewis Agency LLC

Wendy Rose Bice, WRB Consulting

Alexis Dishman, IFF

Sarah Earley

Pamela Enslen, Warner Norcross & Judd, LLP

Aimee Ergas, Wayne State University

Pam Hankins, Comerica Wealth Management

Carol L J Hustoles, Western Michigan University

Terry Merritt, Walbridge

Denise Quarles

Michelle Rabideau, Saint Mary’s Health Care

Kelly Rossman-McKinney

Jacqueline D. Taylor, Pondera Advisors, LLC

Karen Patricia Williams, Ohio State University