Dear Friends,

As the 2017-18 school year commences, I want to welcome you back to what we do best – making a difference in the lives of our students and each other. The NY State ACE Women’s Network has been hard at work this past year partnering with colleges and universities across the state supporting events at individual institutions, across the six (Long Island/New York City, Rockland/Westchester, Hudson Valley, Capital/Northern, Central and Western) regions, and hosting our annual state conference.

This year our state theme is Discover Yourself, highlighting the value and purposeful intention of spending time on your own personal and professional leadership development.

SAVE THE DATE! April 5-6, 2018 is our annual conference at the Otesaga Resort in Cooperstown. This year’s focus: Together Towards Tomorrow: Discover yourself through diverse perspectives.

There has never been a more important time than now for our contributions as women leaders in higher education to be recognized, developed, supported and celebrated. According to results from the recently released American College President Study 2017, in which 3,615 college and university presidents were invited to participate, with a response rate of 43%, the number of women college presidents across the nation continues to increase – from 26% in 2011 to 30% in 2016. While the needle is moving in the right direction, it is still below the benchmark set by the National ACE Women’s Network’s Moving the Needle initiative, whose mission is to have 50% women in the role of college president in the United States by 2030. Rest assured, the National ACE Women’s Network and New York State ACE Women’s Network is in good hands with Dr. Margaret Drugovich, President of Hartwick College, serving as both the Executive Chair of the American Council on Education Women’s Network Executive Council as well as our own NY State Presidential sponsor!

The results of the survey paint the picture of women continuing to be under represented in leadership roles and more specifically, severely lagging in minority women serving as presidents. In fact, it was revealed that out of the 1600+ presidents that completed this survey, only 1 in 3 are women – and of these 1 in 5 are minority. In New York State the picture is even bleaker, only 63 of the 198 presidents are women, and of these women presidents, only 7 are African American with no Latina or Asian women currently serving in this capacity.

We’ve got work to do! Our mission in NY State is clear: “We are the premier New York State organization empowering women leaders in higher education” and are committed to making a difference through educating, involving, and partnering with women to move the needle. Whether you are interested in expanding your personal portfolio of leadership knowledge or setting your career trajectory to become a college or university president, the NY State Women’s Network can provide you with tools, contacts and support on your journey.

This coming year we will focus on opportunities to discuss inclusivity and intersectionality among women, what this means to each of us on an individual, collective, and national level, and how we can apply our knowledge to the organizations and students we love. What we put in will be what we take away. The possibilities are endless.

I encourage you to seek out your Institutional Representative (IR) – if you are not sure who that is, just click on “Institutional Representatives” below and then choose your region. If your institution does not have an IR and you are interested in learning more about this leadership opportunity, reach out to your Regional Representative (also below) and contact them to find out more.

On behalf the Board of the NY State ACE Women’s Network, we look forward to building purposeful and lasting relationships with all of you and we thank you for all that you do. We Got This.

Mindfully yours,
Kathy Merget, NY State Chair- ACE Women’s Network

WHO WE ARE – ACE is the major coordinating body for the nation’s colleges and universities. We represent nearly 1800 College and University Presidents and the executives at related associations. We are the only major higher education association to represent all types of U.S. accredited degree granting institutions: 2-year and 4-year, public and private. Our strength lies in our loyal and diverse base of member institutions, 75% of which have been with ACE for over ten years. That loyalty stands as a testament to the value derived from membership. We convene representatives from all sectors to collectively tackle the toughest higher education challenges, with a focus on improving access and preparing every student to succeed.


State Board Members Institutional Representatives Regional Representatives