Launch of Anne Welsh McNulty Institute for Women’s Leadership


Courtesy of Victoria Berger

Victoria Berger

On Thursday, Oct. 26, the Anne Welsh McNulty Institute for Women’s Leadership finally launched. Its mission is to “develop leaders in the Augustinian tradition of self understanding in the pursuit of a just and peaceful world.”

McNulty, after whom the institute is named, graduated from Villanova in 1975 as valedictorian. She worked for Goldman Sachs as a Managing Director and then a senior executive of the Hedge Fund Strategies Group. Afterwards, she founded JBK Partners, where she combined her two passions: investment banking and philanthropic endeavors. 

Through her generous $5 million donation, the new institute for women’s leadership will increase the University’s ability to empower and support women leaders not only on campus, but within the larger community. This institute and its resources are open to both men and women on campus by focusing on equal education and advocacy for all.

Hours before the launch, the University hosted a leadership summit entitled “Women Igniting Change.” Following the four hour summit was the launch of the McNulty Institute. The night of the launch started with a welcome address given by University Provost Patrick G. Maggitti, Ph.D. Then, Teresa Boyer, Ph.D., the Founding Director of the institute spoke. Dr. Boyer is a published author in educational and workforce equity, as well as women’s education and leadership. Then, University President Rev. Peter  Donohue, Ph.D. and Anne Welsh McNulty both spoke, excited and eager to welcome the new institute to campus. Finally, Anne-Marie Slaughter, Ph.D., the President and CEO of New America gave the Keynote Address. Dr. Slaughter was the first woman to serve as the Director of Policy Planning for the U.S. State Department and was the former president of the American Society of International Law.

The McNulty Institute has four major program areas: Research and Knowledge Development, Capacity Building and Skills Development, Networking and Enabling Connections and Advocacy. It is the University’s hope that students, faculty, staff and alumni will all benefit from the institute. The McNulty institute is only one part of the University’s $600 million “Comprehensive Capital Campaign.” 

Donohue referred to the launch as a “new chapter to Villanova’s story.”