George Family Foundation Honors Marilyn Carlson Nelson, Trudy Rautio and Wendy Nelson Among Others at First-Ever Women Leaders Event

September 15, 2014 // // MINNEAPOLIS - Carlson, a global hospitality and travel company, today announced that the George Family Foundation will recognize Carlson president & CEO, Trudy Rautio; Marilyn Carlson Nelson, former Carlson chairman and CEO; and Wendy Nelson, director, as three of 84 exceptional women leaders making remarkable contributions to building the Twin Cities at its first-ever "Celebrating Twin Cities Women Leaders" event on September 16.

The event celebrates women who have served as CEO, board chair or president of large corporations, colleges and universities, government and nonprofit organizations, health care, and major arts organizations in the Twin Cities. Nine groundbreaking women leaders will also be honored posthumously at the event for their contributions in creating the quality of life present in the Twin Cities today.

"We are pleased to honor Marilyn, Trudy and Wendy for their leadership and contributions to our community. I find it immensely gratifying the number of talented women who have led the Twin Cities in building institutions and solving significant social problems," said Penny George, president of the George Family Foundation. "I hope the community realizes how very fortunate we are for their dedication and their leadership."

According to the 2013 Minnesota Census of Women in Corporate Leadership, produced by St. Catherine University and co-sponsored by the Minnesota Women’s Economic Roundtable, women are gaining ground in corporate leadership positions statewide. Fifty-two of Minnesota’s 100 largest publicly held companies have both women corporate directors and women executive officers. In 2008, women held 117 board seats and only four women were CEOs in the state’s top companies. By 2013, there were 119 women board members and seven CEOs.

About Carlson

Carlson is a privately held, global hospitality and travel company headquartered in Minneapolis, Minn. and is the parent company of Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group and Carlson Wagonlit Travel. Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group has more than 1,340 hotels in operation and under development including: Quorvus Collection, Radisson Blu®, Radisson®, Radisson Red, Park Plaza®; Park Inn® by Radisson and Country Inns & Suites By CarlsonSM. CWT is a global leader specializing in business travel management and meetings and events. CWT serves companies, government institutions and non-governmental organizations of all sizes. Carlson operates in more than 150 countries and territories and its brands employ more than 100,000 people.

About the George Family Foundation

The mission of the George Family Foundation is to foster wholeness in mind, body, spirit and community by developing authentic leaders and supporting transformative programs serving the common good. The guiding philosophy of the George Family Foundation is to invest in people, programs and initiatives that further the mission of the Foundation and help build the communities in which we live. For more information, visit


Ben Gardeen
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