Merrill Series 2011
Women, Business, and Power
Thursday, May 5
Since 1997, Emily Rooney has been the host, executive editor, and creator of Greater Boston and Beat the Press on WGBH-TV. Since 2010 she has also hosted the Emily Rooney Show on WGBH radio. From 1994 - 1997, Emily was director of political coverage and special events at Fox Network in New York. Before that she was executive producer of ABC World News Tonight with Peter Jennings. She also worked in the news division of WCVB-TV in Boston from 1979-1993. Emily has been awarded the National Press Club's Arthur Rowse Award for Press Criticism, a series of New England Emmy Awards, and Associated Press recognition for Best News/Talk Show. Emily is a graduate of American University in Washington and holds honorary doctoral degrees from the University of Massachusetts Boston and Westfield State College.
Karen Firestone '73
Karen is President, CEO, and co-founder of Aureus Asset Management, an investment firm dedicated to providing contemporary asset management to families and individuals. Previously, she spent 22 years at Fidelity Investments, most recently as diversified fund manager in the Growth Group with oversight of the Large Cap Fund, Advisor Large Cap Fund, Destiny 1 Fund, and several institutional non-profit and pension funds. Prior to that, Karen managed several sector funds, including the Leisure and Entertainment Fund, the Media Fund, Air Transportation Fund, Biotechnology Fund, and Health Care Fund. Karen's Fidelity career began in 1983 as an assistant fund manager to Peter Lynch on Magellan Fund. Later she moved to an analyst role in the research department covering numerous industries. Karen received a B.A. degree in economics, magna cum laude, from Harvard College and an MBA from Harvard Business School. She is the Chairman of the Board of Commonwealth School. She has served on committees at Harvard University, and is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Boston and the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.
Kara Yu '02
Kara graduated from MIT and received dual degrees in Economics and Mathematics with Computer Science. She worked in mergers and acquisitions at the Swiss bank UBS before leaving to work for Google in California as a business analyst focusing on Latin America and Asia. Most recently, Kara worked at Google Singapore covering sales strategy for all of the Asia Pacific region. She is currently in her first year at Harvard Business School and is focusing on tech entrepreneurship.
Meridith Unger '97
Formerly an Associate with the life sciences investment team at Atlas Venture, Meridith is a consultant, advisor, and entrepreneur in the life sciences industry. Meredith has been deeply involved in the creation of multiple startups in Boston, including Kala Pharmaceuticals, Genocea Biosciences, Sage Therapeutics, and Aukera Theraputics. Before Atlas, Meridith was a Manager with Boston Healthcare Associates, managing projects in the pharmaceutical, device, and diagnostic sectors on commercialization and M&A strategies. Before that, she was a lender with with life science and venutre capital lending team at Silicon Valley Bank. Meridith is also the co-founder and CEO of Aukera Therapeutics, developing a protein theraputic for ALS (commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease). Aukera was the winner of the Life Sciences track of the 2010 MIT $100K Competition as well as the Audience Choice Award. Meridith is a graduate of Harvard Business School, where she was a member of the Venture Creation Program. She received the Anna Pell Wheeler Prize upon graduating with a B.A. in mathematics from Bryn Mawr College, where she also minored in Art History. Meridith is currently enrolled in the Kauffman Fellows Program as a member of the 15th class.
David Kravitz '82 (Moderator)
David Kravitz '82 is a former law clerk to Supreme Court Justices Sandra Day O'Connor and Stephen Breyer, former Deputy Legal Counsel to the Governor of Massachusetts and a specialist in appellate litigation. He is also a professional opera singer. He co-founded Blue Mass Groupin 2004, which has become the leading voice for the progressive netroots community in Massachusetts.