MaryAnn Wright- Distinguished Alumnus of the Year

Well, one of the memories I have about MaryAnn is really about her leadership, and that’s both leading a team, but also the ability to interact with corporate management. The biggest project that she and I worked on was the original Escape Hybrid program. It was the first gas electric hybrid that Ford Motor Company did. And through her dedication, and determination, and putting the team together and her leadership skills were delivered on time, on budget with great results and quality. MaryAnn and I are both on the board for the Friends for Animals of Metro Detroit. She asked me to join the board about two years ago, which was sort of a defining moment in our relationship because at Ford she worked for me, when she left Ford she was obviously on her own, and now in a way I work for her. MaryAnn and I met when she first started volunteering for the animal shelter. Within five minutes, when our former chairperson resigned, she decided to take on the position. We’ve been in a capital campaign for many, many, many years. MaryAnn has been integral in helping us move forward with that. In fact, she is the one that has made it happen for us. We just recently broke ground and I give her all the credit for that. MaryAnn, congratulations on this great honor and thank you for being a dear friend. And always remember that you’ve got a lot of friends that love you dearly. And thank you for making a difference.