Associate Dean of William Smith Lisa Kaenzig was recently named to the national Board of Directors of the Public Leadership Education Network (PLEN), an organization that encourages and prepares young women to be political leaders. William Smith College is a member of PLEN and Kaenzig has been an individual member since she participated in the program as an undergraduate while attending Rutgers University.
Joining HWS in 2003, Kaenzig has more than 20 years of administrative experience, including several years working in politics in Washington, D. C. She served as the executive director of the Women’s Information Network, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing career support to women interested in politics and public service. She also worked on the staffs of the National Governors Association and the Women’s Campaign Fund in communications, advocacy and development roles. She has been a project coordinator at the Center for Gifted Education at the College of William and Mary, director of a Montessori school in North Carolina, and principal for a career consulting firm. In the local community, Kaenzig serves as the president of the Music Boosters of Geneva and on the board of the Geneva Theatre Guild.
In addition to a B.A. in political science from Douglass College at Rutgers University, Kaenzig holds a master’s in human resource development from George Washington University and a Ph.D. in educational policy, planning and leadership from the College of William and Mary.
Founded in 1978, PLEN has served thousands of college women, exposing them to role models and skill trainings before they enter the workforce. PLEN seeks to increase the number of women in top leadership positions. The faculty at PLEN is comprised exclusively of women leaders including members of Congress, major judicial figures, presidential advisers, senior government leaders, veteran nonprofit advocates and corporate lobbyists.
Each year, PLEN brings women students from colleges and universities across the country to Washington, D.C. for a weekend, week, or an entire summer to experience firsthand how public policy is shaped and implemented at the national level. This past summer, four William Smith students — Anna Dorman ’14, Faith James ’13, Samantha Tripoli ’11 and Brynna Trumpetto ’14 — participated in the Women and International Policy seminar. The students met and learned from women who serve in the highest levels in the Congress, courts, federal agencies, corporate sector, and more.