Pennsylvania Commission for Women

Hannah Penn Leadership Awards



In March 2013, Governor Corbett honored Hannah Callowhill Penn, the first woman to govern Pennsylvania over 300 years ago. As William Penn’s second wife, Hannah Penn played a critical role in the development of Pennsylvania.

Hannah Callowhill Penn
Hannah Callowhill Penn
Living in England and working through agents in Pennsylvania, she governed the colony for six years after her husband was incapacitated by a stroke in 1712 and for an additional eight years following his death in 1718. No other woman in Britain, except Queen Mary II and Queen Anne, had held direct political power of this kind.

Hannah Penn holds a special place in the history of Pennsylvania and serves today as a role model for women who desire to affect political change, overcome personal challenges and become leaders in our state, communities, schools and businesses.

The legacy of this important female leader is recognized through the Hannah Penn Leadership Awards, which honor Pennsylvania women who have been outstanding mentors and role models through their leadership, service and commitment to empowering women and girls in the commonwealth.

The inaugural awards were presented by Governor Tom Corbett, First Lady Susan Corbett and the Pennsylvania Commission for Women on March 19, 2014, at the Governor’s Residence in Harrisburg. For more information, please see the Press Release below.
Congratulations to the 2014 recipients of the Hannah Penn Leadership Awards!



Hannah Kirby, Erie
2014 Rising Star Award


Lorraine Marchand, Yardley
2014 Business Leadership Award



Pat Halpin-Murphy, Ambler

2014 Civic and Volunteer
Leadership Award


Ann Wilson, Johnstown
2014 Hannah Penn Leadership Award

 for Distinguished Service
 (Posthumously presented to the Wilson Family)



Press Release: Pennsylvania Commission for Women Announces Hannah Penn Leadership Award Recipients.
Press Release: Governor Corbett Proclaims Hannah Callowhill Penn Day in Honor of Women’s History Month.
Press Release: Pennsylvania Commission for Women Seeks Nominations for Hannah Penn Awards