NEC to Honor New Englanders of the Year at 2016 Annual Dinner

Honorees Include GE Chariman & CEO Jeffrey Immelt, Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo, Olympic Athlete Abbey D’Agostino, and Former Ambassador Nick Burns as a New Englander of the Year

BOSTON (October 25, 2016) –The New England Council, the nation’s oldest regional business organization, will present its prestigious “New Englander of the Year” awards at its 2016 Annual Dinner at the Seaport Hotel/World Trade Center in Boston on Tuesday, November 1, 2016.  This year’s recipients are former Ambassador R. Nicholas Burns, U.S. Olympic Track & Field team member Abbey D’Agostino, GE Chairman and CEO Jeffrey R. Immelt, and Rhode Island Governor Gina M. Raimondo.

The 2016 Annual Dinner co-chairs are Joseph L. Hooley, Chairman & CEO, State Street Corporation and Michael F. Mahoney, Chairman & CEO, Boston Scientific. Over 1,700 New England Council members representing businesses large and small across a wide range of industries throughout New England will be in attendance.

The “New Englander of the Year” awards are presented each year by The New England Council and honor residents or natives of the New England states for their commitment and contributions in their fields of work, as well as their leadership and impact on the New England region’s quality of life and economy. First presented in 1964, over the years the award has been presented to U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz; U.S. Ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg; Senators Ted Kennedy, Jack Reed, Jean Shaheen, Kelly Ayotte, Susan Collins and John Kerry; Congressmen Richard Neal, Ed Markey, John Larson, and Barney Frank; and business leaders such as Abigail Johnson of Fidelity Investments, Robert Reynolds of Putnam Investments, Anne Finucane of Bank of America and many other respected government, business, and non-profit leaders.

“Each of our 2016 honorees has made impressive and inspiring contributions to our economy and our communities, both here in New England and beyond,” said James T. Brett, President and CEO of the New England Council. “Through thoughtful leadership, innovative thinking, and dedication to their community and their nation, these individuals truly embody all that is great about New England. We’re delighted to be celebrating their accomplishments with hundreds of our members at this year’s Annual Dinner.”

The New England Council’s Board of Directors selected this year’s honorees based on their commitment to the community, distinguished careers and countless contributions to the region and the nation:

R. Nicholas Burns, Ambassador (Ret.), Goodman Family Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Relations, Harvard Kennedy School – Nicholas Burns is the Goodman Family Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Relations at the Harvard Kennedy School. He also serves on Secretary of State John Kerry’s Foreign Policy Advisory Board. In a long diplomatic career, he was U.S. Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, U.S. Ambassador to NATO and to Greece, State Department Spokesman and he also served on the National Security Council staff for Presidents Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush.

Abbey D’Agostino, U.S. Olympic Track & Field Team – Abbey D’Agostino is a native of Topsfield, MA, and a graduate of Dartmouth College. While at Dartmouth, she won a total of seven NCAA titles as a middle- and long-distance runner, making her the most decorated Ivy League athlete in track and field and cross country running. In 2016, Abbey represented the United States at the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, where her tremendous display of sportsmanship earned her the Rio 2016 Fair Play Award from the International Fair Play Committee.

Jeffrey R. Immelt, Chairman and CEO, GE – Jeffrey R. Immelt is the ninth chairman of GE, a post he has held since September 7, 2001. He has held several global leadership positions since joining GE in 1982. Mr. Immelt has been named one of the “World’s Best CEOs” three times by Barron’s, and since he began serving as chief executive officer, GE has been named “America’s Most Admired Company” by Fortune magazine and one of “The World’s Most Respected Companies” by Barron’s and the Financial Times. Mr. Immelt was the chair of President Obama’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness. He is a member of The American Academy of Arts & Sciences. Mr. Immelt earned a B.A. degree in applied mathematics from Dartmouth College in 1978 and an M.B.A. from Harvard University in 1982.

The Honorable Gina M. Raimondo, Governor, The State of Rhode Island – Gina M. Raimondo is Rhode Island’s first female Governor. Prior to her inauguration in January 2015, Governor Raimondo was the state’s General Treasurer. Before her career in public service, Governor Raimondo clerked for U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood, served as senior vice president at venture capital firm Village Ventures, and co-founded Rhode Island’s only venture capital firm, Point Judith Capital. As Governor, Raimondo has set an ambitious agenda to grow Rhode Island’s economy, improve public education and create opportunities for all Rhode Islanders. A Rhode Island native, Governor Raimondo graduated with honors from Harvard University, earned her doctorate as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University and later graduated from Yale Law School.

The New England Council’s 2016 Annual Dinner will be held on Tuesday, November 1, 2016, at the Seaport Hotel/World Trade Center in Boston. The reception will begin at 4:30 p.m., followed by a dinner program and award presentation beginning at 6:00 p.m.

The New England Council, the country’s oldest regional business organization, is an alliance of businesses, academic and health institutions, and public and private organizations throughout New England formed to promote economic growth and a high quality of life in the region. The Council is dedicated to identifying and supporting federal public policies and articulating the voice of its membership regionally and nationally on important issues facing New England. The NEC is also committed to working with public and private sector leaders across the region and in Washington through educational programs and forums for information exchange. For more information, please visit: www.newenglandcouncil.com.

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