Teresa Younger, of Shelton, Connecticut, is the President and CEO, Ms. Foundation for Women. Previously, she was Executive Director of the Connecticut General Assembly’s Permanent Commission on the Status of Women (PCSW). The PCSW has been the State’s leading force for women’s equality for 40 years by fulfilling its mandate to: study all matters concerning women; inform leaders and the public about the nature and scope of discrimination; promote consideration of women for government positions; and work with State agencies to assess programs and practices as they affect women (per Connecticut General Statute 46a).
Prior to joining the PCSW, Younger was the Director of Affiliate Organizational Development at the American Civil Liberties Union National Office, where she assisted affiliates throughout the country with organization and management issues. Prior to her tenure with ACLU National, Younger became the first woman and the first African American to serve as Executive Director of the ACLU of Connecticut.
Younger has a diverse array of policy and management experience, from corporate philanthropy to youth development. She has recently concluded her role as two-term president of the board of the Girl Scouts of Connecticut, which serves 46,000 Connecticut girls and 20,000 volunteers. Younger also serves on several other boards including the Women’s Campaign School at Yale University, the Universal Health Care Foundation of Connecticut, the National Advisory Board on Religious Restrictions on Care and previously served on the Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame and the National Association of Commissions for Women.
A noted speaker, advocate and activist, she has been recognized with numerous awards for her commitment to civil rights and civil liberties including, in 2013, Liberty Bank’s Willard M. McRae Community Diversity Award, the Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame Education and Empowerment Honoree, and the Girl Scouts of Connecticut Breakfast Badge Award.
Earlier, she was honored with the Charter Oak Cultural Center’s Social Justice Award and the Alpha Kappa Alpha New Haven Chapter’s Excellence in Leadership Award. The Hartford Business Journal has named Younger one of its “8 Remarkable Women in Business,” and the Connecticut NAACP has selected her three times as one of its “100 Most Influential Blacks in the State of Connecticut.”
In 2013, she was named a Henry Toll Fellow by the national Council on State Government, as well as a Fellow in the William Caspar Graustein Courageous Community Fellowship. In 2010, Younger was one of eight women from Connecticut who went to Saudi Arabia as part of The Global Women’s Leadership Institute, a networking and economic development project. In 2009, she was chosen to participate in the National Council of State Legislatures Legislative Staff Management Institute.
She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Dakota and lives in Shelton with her husband, Ronald Preston.
Younger lives by the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., 1959: “Make a career of humanity. Commit yourself to the noble struggle for equal rights. You will make a greater person of yourself, a greater nation of your country, and a finer world to live in.”