Macy’s Inc.Â (NYSE: M) has increased its board of directors from 10 members to 11 by appointingÂ Deirdre ConnellyÂ to its board of directors.Â Ms. Connelly is the president of Lilly USA, a division of Eli Lilly (NYSE: LLY).Â Macy’s CEOÂ Terry Lundgren stated that Deirdre Connelly’s presence on the company’s board of directors will help develop strategies in the Hispanic market.
Deirdre Connelly is a native of San Juan Puerto Rico and graduated from Lycoming College in Pennsylvania in 1983 earning a degree in economics and marketing.Â She joined Eli Lilly the same year as a sales representative in San Juan and became marketing associate in 1984.Â Â
Five years later, Deirdre Connelly joined Eli Lilly’s internationalÂ managment development program which led to her promotion to diabetes program manager in Pennsylvania.Â In 1992, she returned to the Caribbean when she was promoted to marketing and sales director of Puerto Rico, and one year later she moved up to the role of director of sales and marketing for the Caribbean Basin Region which included Puerto Rico, the countries that make up the Caribbean Islands andÂ Central America.Â Just two years later in 1995, Deirdre Connelly was promoted again.Â This time she took on the role of general manager for Eli Lilly Puerto Rico, S.A.
From 1997 to 2001, Ms. Connelly worked in Indiana as a regional sales director, executive director of global marketing for Evista and team leader for the Evista product team.Â During that time,Â she alsoÂ graduated from Harvard University’s Advanced Management Program.Â She was promoted to leader of the women’s health business unit in the United States, and in 2003, she became executive director of human resources for Eli Lilly’s U.S. affiliate.
Her star continued to rise as she accepted the role ofÂ vice president of human resources for pharmaceutical operations in May 2004 and later that year the role of senior vice president of human resources which included being part of the company’s policy committee.Â Again, she spent just a short time in that role because in June 2005, she was promoted to president of Lilly USA.Â In 2006 and 2007, she ranked as one of the 50 Most Powerful Women according to Fortune.
It’s clear that Deirdre Connelly has led an inspiring career thatÂ has taught her to wear many hats and understand many aspects of the organization sheÂ works for.Â In her new position on the board of Macy’s, she joins three other female directors:
- Sara Levinson:Â Chairwoman of ClubMom Inc. and former president of NFL Properties Inc.
- Joyce Roche:Â President and CEO of Girls Inc.
- Marna Whittington: President of Nicholas Applegate Capital Management
What do you think of Macy’s election of Deirdre Connelly to its board of directors?Â It’s great to see a company (no matter what industry that company is in) attempt to create a balance in the boardroom between men and women.