Marian Heard
President & CEO, Oxen Hill Partners

Marian L. Heard is the president and chief executive officer of Oxen Hill Partners, a Boston-based company specializing in leadership development programs and brand enhancement strategies. She lists Fortune 500 companies and privately-held entitles among her clients. She retired as the president and CEO of the Boston United Way, and as the chief executive officer of the United Ways of New England.

When she arrived for this position, the United Way of Massachusetts Bay in Boston was #87 for major gifts. The last two years of her tenure, the UW was #1 out of over 1,400 United Way organizations. She was called the most honored United Way Chief Executive in America, not only for her development prowess, but for her leadership in the legislation focus that resulted in the Children’s license plate that generates approximately $30,000 a month for children’s programs and innovative programs for children and families, including “Success By Six” and “Keeping Kids on Track,” both national award winning efforts. She is also the first recipient of an Endowed Chair for Leadership (the Ansin Executive Leadership Chair) and the first in the country to have public park space to highlight children, a gift spearheaded by the late Tom Menino, Mayor of Boston.

On her retirement from the United Way, the Board established a scholarship program in her honor. To date, 135 students have been helped to attend college as a Marian L. Heard Scholar and new additions will be included with the high school class of 2018.

Heard is the Founding President and Chief Executive Officer of the Points of Light Foundation, which was formed to perpetuate President George H. W. Bush’s call for voluntary service to address serious social problems in America. Greatly expanded in the 26 years of her association, having served two terms as the National Board Chair, the Points of Light is now the largest volunteer advocacy organization in the world with operations in Europe and many parts of Asia as well.

At the White House, at Camp David and at 10 Downing Street in London, Mrs. Heard has led strategic planning sessions which focused on her innovative approaches directed at recruiting, retaining and recognizing volunteers and the program focus area of increased inclusion of diverse populations. After her Board service, she continues as a member of the Advisory Board.

Mrs. Heard has had the very rare privilege of working with six United States Presidents: Ford, Carter, Bush, Clinton, Bush and Obama on a range of issues from volunteer leadership, youth development and civic engagement.

She is a Founding member of MENTOR/The National Mentoring Partnership, which was organized to support and expand mentoring across America.

She is a past Board member of Fleet Bank, Liberty Mutual Insurance Group, Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Massachusetts, CVS/Health, Sovereign Bank, Santander Holdings, BioSphere Medical group and Santander, USA.

She is currently a Trustee of Dana Farber Cancer Institute and a prior Board member of the New England Aquarium. She is also a member of the Advisory Board and Senior Strategist for the Friends Beverage Group.

She is the recipient of 21 Honorary Doctorate Degrees and over 100 awards and citations including the Buckley Orator Award, the Warren Bennis award for Outstanding Leadership, the National Public Citizen of the Year award and the Others Award, the highest civilian award presented by the Salvation Army.

Her other memberships include the Massachusetts Women’s Conference, the Boston College CEO Club. the Massachusetts Women’s Forum and the Commercial Club.

She has been inducted into the Governance Hall of Fame, the highest award for corporate directors, by the 17,400 member National Association of Corporate Directors which cited her “outstanding leadership in the Board room.”

She is a graduate of the University of Bridgeport, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and Springfield College and has received an Honorary Degree as well as other awards from each of her colleges. In addition, she has completed the Executive Leadership Program at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor where she focused on economics and social policy.

Married to Winlow M. Heard, they are the parents of two married sons and have four grandchildren.