Hundreds of people recently gathered at the White Manor Country Club in Malvern to celebrate the accomplishments of female business leaders in the community at the Chester County Chamber of Business and Industry’s annual Women Influencing Business dinner.
The chamber honored Karen Carlson, the Director of Corporate Giving and Community Affairs at Aqua America, with its Executive of the Year Award and Caroline Donato, a criminal defense attorney for MacElree Harvey, with its Rising Star of the Year Award.
Carlson helped Aqua establish a foundation that would become the new source of its corporate giving. Today, she remains responsible for the coordination of the company’s financial contributions to organizations throughout Pennsylvania and oversees Aqua Charitable Trust donations in the eight states Aqua serves.
Among the recent accomplishments in which she played a leading role is the company’s Ripple Effect program, which encourages Aqua employees to volunteer for select projects in the communities the company serves throughout 32 counties in Pennsylvania.
“I am honored and humbled to have been chosen for this award,” said Carlson. “I have enjoyed working in the corporate giving arena and have always considered it a privilege to be able to have a role in supporting such worthy organizations that have a positive impact in the communities Aqua serves. I’m fortunate that my position at Aqua enables me to develop relationships with organizations our company supports with financial gifts, as well as volunteerism.”
Donato, a graduate of Widener University School of Law and one of Super Lawyers magazine’s 2019 Pennsylvania Rising Stars, focuses her practice on federal and state criminal defense and related civil and administrative matters at both the trial and appellate level.
“Over the last several years, I have been able to grow, nurture, and evolve my criminal defense practice, in great part, because of the support and encouragement of others,” said Donato. “Thank you to the Women Influencing Business Committee, the chamber, MacElree Harvey, and my family. It is an honor to be recognized by the Chester County Chamber of Business & Industry and community.”