Editor's Note: To Recognize Women's History Month, Veterans Advantage honors Board Member Donna de Varona. A two-time Olympic Gold Medalist, and pioneer for equality for women in sports and broadcasting, Donna is the daughter of a combat medic who served with the Red Cross in WWII, and spouse of Army Veteran John Pinto.
This profile is reprinted by permission of SportsBusiness Journal.
At a conference table high above Times Square, Donna de Varona is helping to invent the old girl network. Alongside executives of the professional services firm Ernst & Young, she plots the rollout of the Women Athletes Business Network, an online community of female athletes looking to transition to corporate life.
She’s attacking the cause with the same zeal she brought to countless others over the last half-century. “I’ve watched men in the corporate world seek out male athletes,” she explains. “They do it because those athletes know how to work as a team, to get through pain, to set goals, to deal with failure. Well, the same is true for women.”