The Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce’s Winning Opportunities for Women
When the Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce decided to commemorate the 20th anniversary of its Winning Opportunities for Women Conference with the inaugural Pinnacle Awards this April, it wasn’t hard to find worthy recipients.
The event committee chose to honor Karen Andreas, regional publisher at North of Boston Media Group; Dianne Anderson, president and CEO of Lawrence General Hospital; Ipswich District Court Judge Patricia Dowling; Janice Morse, president and CEO of Newburyport Five Cents Savings Bank; and Jacqueline Moloney, chancellor of UMass Lowell. Read on to find out what makes some of these W.O.W. women tick.
Karen Andreas – Publisher, North of Boston Media Group
As a college junior at the University of New Hampshire, Karen Andreas interned at The Daily News of Newburyport, where her first story assignment was to kayak down the Merrimack River and then write about it.
“It was the best summer of my life,” she recalls. “I knew it was the career for me.
“Then the next day they sent me to the Rowley Zoning Board,” Andreas says with a laugh.
Still, she was hooked.
“I fell in love with community journalism and never left,” says the Danvers mother of two teenage boys.
Today, Andreas is regional publisher at North of Boston Media Group, the parent company of 10 award-winning newspapers, including The Eagle-Tribune, The Salem News and The Daily News of Newburyport, where her career began. The company also publishes North of Boston Business magazine, five community-specific glossies and has grown its digital audience with 24/7 news content on nine local websites.
“I’ve seen a lot of changes over the years,” says Andreas, who has remained steadfast in her news coverage mantra. “For me, it’s all about local content. We try to keep everything we do hyperlocal. That’s why we’ve been successful.”
Andreas, who was named Editor & Publisher’s 2014 Publisher of the Year, has held almost every newsroom title over her long career: intern, reporter, editor, city editor, managing editor and, of course, publisher. She was publisher of The Salem News for several years before being tapped to lead North of Boston Media Group, where she has been for the last three years.
And while her days may be packed with meetings, emails and phone calls — rather than cruising the Merrimack in a kayak — Andreas says her job is both exciting and rewarding.
“I feel like I’m right in the middle of it all,” she says. “I can walk down the hallway and be in a two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning newsroom [The Eagle Tribune]. There is no day that is ever the same as the last.”
Recently appointed to the National Advisory Board of The Poynter Institute, a journalism think tank, Andreas serves on several panels, including The Salem Partnership and the New England Newspaper & Press Association. She’s also president of the Danvers High School Falcons Football Boosters and a former chair of the North Shore Chamber of Commerce.
And even though her “free” time isn’t always free, Andreas is careful about spreading herself too thinly.
“For me, if I do something, I have to do it 100 percent,” she says.
And then of course, there’s family. And family, she says, always comes first. She learned this from her parents, both of whom served as role models while Andreas was growing up, and still do, she says. “She has more energy and enthusiasm than anyone I know,” Andreas says about her mother. “She was a very good businesswoman, but always for her it was family first.”
Andreas wants to be a similar role model for her children, showing them that being a mother and an executive are not mutually exclusive.
“It’s not always easy,” she says. “There are some sacrifices you have to make, but it’s only because I have had some great bosses who knew that family came first.”
Andreas doesn’t put too much emphasis on the fact that she is a woman in a male-dominated field, even though she was one of only three women in a crowd of 53 at a recent publishing conference.
Andreas says knowledge, hard work and having a passion for what you are doing are the keys to being successful.
She adds, “Working long hours doesn’t necessarily mean you’re working hard.”
Watch for part 2 of this series, profiling Dianne Anderson – President and CEO, Lawrence General Hospital, early next week on mvmag.net