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Greater Boston Chamber Announces Virtual Annual Meeting Date, Theme, and Inductees into the Academy of Distinguished Bostonians

May 12, 2020

Greater Boston Chamber Announces Virtual Annual Meeting Date, Theme, and Inductees into the Academy of Distinguished Bostonians

On June 29, the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce will host its first ever virtual Annual Meeting with the theme Boston Business Forward. Moving Boston Business Forward is the only direction. The future of work is here and our region and community are ready to take on the challenges of a changed world. Despite the true hardships caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Chamber’s diverse membership continues to lead the tough conversations and effort demanded to move our economy forward and keep our region, businesses, and people thriving long term. There is no going back, only forward together.

Each year at the Annual Meeting, the Chamber inducts members of the business community into its prestigious Academy of Distinguished Bostonians. The honor recognizes leaders who have not only demonstrated an exemplary career of outstanding leadership within their organizations and their industries, but who have also been committed to making Greater Boston the best place for all people and all businesses to thrive.

Our 2020 honorees are: Andrew Dreyfus, President and CEO of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts;

Lee Pelton, PhD, President of Emerson College; and Marcy L. Reed, President of National Grid’s Massachusetts business and Executive Vice President of US Policy & Social Impact. Dreyfus, Pelton, and Reed will join an accomplished group of Academy members, including business leaders, philanthropists, local and national elected officials, cultural dignitaries, and sports greats.

“The times we find ourselves now navigating are certainly unparalleled and unprecedented. As businesses across the region seek to innovate and adapt, we look forward to trying something new by making our Annual Meeting fully virtual,” said James E. Rooney, President and CEO of the GBCC. “We are proud to be honoring Andrew, Lee, and Marcy at our Annual Meeting on June 29 where we will show our region that we are still moving Boston Business Forward.”

Andrew Dreyfus is President and Chief Executive Officer for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts (BCBSMA), one of largest independent Blue Cross Blue Shield plans in the country, with nearly 3 million members. Andrew has been recognized as a national leader on many of the country’s most challenging health care issues including payment innovation, end of life and serious illness care, and substance use disorder. He currently serves on the boards of the National Institute for Health Care Management, Ironwood Pharmaceuticals, Boys and Girls Clubs of Boston, Jobs for Massachusetts, RIZE Massachusetts, and the New England Chapter of the National Association of Corporate Directors. Additionally, Andrew is a member of the Massachusetts Digital Health Council and the advisory boards of Ariadne Labs and the Leonard D. Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics at the University of Southern California. Andrew is a founding member of the Massachusetts Coalition for Serious Illness Care and a member of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Roundtable on Quality Care for People with Serious Illness.

“It’s a great honor to be inducted into the Academy of Distinguished Bostonians alongside Marcy and Lee. The COVID-19 pandemic has again revealed the deep disparities and inequality in American society. Now, more than ever, we must ensure that we create a truly inclusive community, where everyone participates. We should seize this moment to expand opportunities so that no one is left behind. A more equitable city will create a competitive advantage for Boston, allowing businesses and the community to thrive,” said Dreyfus.

Lee Pelton is the 12th president of Emerson College in Boston. He is an internationally known speaker and writer on the value of a liberal education and the importance of leadership development, civic engagement, and diversity and inclusion in higher education. Pelton has outlined a bold vision for Emerson as the global hub for arts, communication, and the liberal arts. He is a well-respected thought and innovation leader, recognized in Boston Business Journal’s 50 Most Powerful Leaders (October 2018), Boston Magazine’s list of “100 Most Influential People in Boston” (April 2018), “The 21 Most Powerful People in Boston Business” (May 2017) and its list of “75 Bold Thinkers Who Are Shaping Our City and the World” (May 2014). Pelton began his academic career at Harvard University, where he earned a PhD in English literature. After Harvard, Pelton served as dean of the college at Colgate University and Dartmouth College and was president at Willamette University in Salem, Oregon for 13 years. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Boston Chamber of Commerce (executive committee); WGBH (executive committee); Boston Arts Academy Foundation (chair); Facing History and Ourselves; the Barr Foundation, one of the nation’s leading philanthropic organizations, with more than $1.8 billion in assets; M.I.T. Press Management Board; Harvard Graduate School Alumni Council; and the Black Economic Council of Massachusetts.

“I am honored to be inducted into the Academy of Distinguished Bostonians alongside Andrew and Marcy, and to represent Emerson College, where artists and storytellers are shaping society in meaningful and bold ways. The Chamber has always celebrated the values I hold dear; those of equity, diversity, and creativity in fostering growth and economic opportunities for all in the Greater Boston community,” said Pelton. "In these unprecedented times, it is even more important to ensure that all members of the community are represented in decision making, recovery planning, and the revitalization of the city as we emerge from the worldwide pandemic."

Marcy L. Reed is President of National Grid’s Massachusetts business and Executive Vice President of US Policy & Social Impact.  She is responsible for the gas and electricity businesses in Massachusetts, including their operational, customer service, financial, and reputational outcomes. In addition, she leads energy policy development for the US business and the effective implementation of National Grid’s new social mobility platform. Marcy sits on the boards of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Northeastern University, the Massachusetts Business Roundtable, the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce, The Partnership, the New England Council, and the Worcester Regional Research Bureau. She is the global executive sponsor for National Grid’s Women in Networks employee resource group.

“I’m deeply honored to be inducted into the Academy of Distinguished Bostonians, joining so many who I admire, including my fellow inductees,” said Reed. “We are at a critical point in history, where it is incumbent upon us as leaders to help steer our region through and beyond this challenging time. I feel fortunate to help lead National Grid, a company that is committed to doing the right thing for our employees, customers, and region. I’m proud to support the Chamber in its commitment to continue to lead and facilitate the dialogue and work needed to move our economy forward.”

The Greater Boston Chamber’s 2020 Annual Meeting is jointly chaired by Sandi L. Fenwick, Chief Executive Officer, Boston Children’s Hospital, and Jerry Sargent, President of Citizens Bank, Massachusetts and National Head of Middle Market and Not-For-Profit Banking. The event is a signature convening for the region, and one of the largest gatherings of the Greater Boston business community, attracting more than 1,800 business, government, and civic leaders. More information on the Annual Meeting and a list of past inductees are available online.


About the Greater Boston Chamber

We are the convener, voice and advocate of our region's business community, committed to making Greater Boston the best place for all businesses and all people to thrive. We help our members and Greater Boston succeed by convening and connecting the business community; researching, developing and advocating for public policies that contribute to our region’s economic success; and providing comprehensive leadership development programs designed to grow strong business and civic leaders. Learn more at BostonChamber.com.