Event Recap: Thrive presents Laura Schwab, Aston Martin’s first female president

Author: Joanne Fahey

Laura Schwab

On Monday, October 14, 2019, Thrive hosted Laura Schwab, ’95, Aston Martin's first female president, for a lunchtime event in McCourtney Hall.

Schwab has been President of Aston Martin The Americas since October 2015 and her role centers on promoting the world’s most beautiful cars. She oversees sales, service, marketing and communications to Aston Martin's customers and dealers within North, Central, and South America. Schwab spent her undergraduate years on a full tennis scholarship at the University of Notre Dame, followed by a degree from University of Kentucky Law School.  

Speaking to a group of nearly 100 people, Schwab shared the wisdom and experiences she has gained throughout her impressive career, including becoming one’s own champion, breaking barriers for women, and opening doors for others.

“As Thrive’s theme this year is Champions for Change, learning from a leader like Laura — who offered us real, practical advice on how to become champions for ourselves and others, was as inspirational as it was actionable,” said Kate Garry, President of Thrive. “I especially admired her honesty and authenticity.”

Attendee Marissa Gebhard echoed this sentiment, “Laura gave us powerful insights we, as women, need to hear to advance our careers. The key to her success was hard work and a relentless pursuit of her own vision for herself. Early in her career, she accepted all work, took classes at night, and developed skills that no one else had. In time, she was prepared to advance quickly. She inspired us as women at all stages of our careers to seek out mentors and be mentors ourselves.”

Throughout the academic year, Thrive will continue to host and support events related to the Champions for Change theme. To learn more or get involved, please visit womenthrive.nd.edu.