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The Power of Mentoring Grieving Girls with Ann Marie Leitao (empowerHER, Dir. of Special Projects)

Today we are discussing the power of mentorship with Ann Marie Leitao of empowerHER! We are honoring Ann Marie's mom, Anita, who died when she was 10 years old. In this conversation, Ann Marie discusses the power of mentoring grieving girls, how she ended up mentoring the family she babysat for growing up, and what it's like bringing a successful non-profit to Los Angeles from across the country.

Ann Marie is originally from Boston, MA, currently living in Los Angeles, CA. She received her undergraduate in business from UMass Amherst, and worked in the private sector in healthcare IT for 10 years before coming aboard as empowerHER’s first Full Time hire in January of 2020. Having experienced the loss of her beautiful mother Anita at 10 years old, Ann Marie is passionate about empowerHER and played an integral role in creating empowerHER’s charity runners program TEAM empowerHER, as well as taking us “East Coast to West Coast” by facilitating the opening of our first Chapter outside of New England in Southern California. In her free time, you can catch Ann Marie cooking, running or spending time with her family on Cape Cod. @annmarieleitao The Story of Ann Marie & Molly empowerHER is the only organization in the country specifically working to address the struggles of girls whose mothers have died. It was formed in 2013 as a grassroots movement in a small town in Massachusetts in an effort to bring teenage girls together on Mother’s Day weekend.

Our MENTOR PROGRAM consists of caring + strong female role models who have also experienced mother loss and teach the girls + young women of empowerHER that their grief is survivable. All programs and activities are provided at no charge to the family and are available both in-person and virtually for girls across the nation and around the globe.

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