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ANNpower launches search for next generation of female leaders

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The ANNpower Vital Voices Initiative announced recently that it is launching a search to find the next generation of female leaders.

High school sophomores and juniors can apply at ANNpower.org now through March 1, 2014 for the opportunity to become to become an ANNpower Fellow.

All young women who are chosen will receive leadership training and be mentored by global women leaders, including members of the ANNpower Advisory Council.

Advisory Council members include actresses Kate Hudson and Jennifer Morrison; Anne Fulenwider, Editor-in-Chief of Marie Claire; and Kay Krill, President and CEO of ANN INC.

ANNpower is a partnership between ANN INC., the parent company of Ann Taylor and LOFT, and Vital Voices Global Partnership.

The 50 young women selected will be invited to the ANNpower Vital Voices Leadership Forum, which will be held in Washington, D.C., June 16-19, 2014.

At the ANNpower Vital Voices Leadership Forum, the young women will receive leadership training from influential women leaders in the Vital Voices Global Leadership Network.

The training and mentoring received at the ANNpower Vital Voices Leadership Forum will prepare these aspiring young leaders to realize their full potential as future leaders.

The Fellows will then return to their communities prepared to create projects to affect change and will apply for project grants to put their ideas into action.

ANNpower Grants will be awarded in the Fall of 2014, and winning Fellows will spend the school year implementing their projects and receiving mentoring from ANN INC. associates.

"We look forward to welcoming our next class of ANNpower Fellows," said Kay Krill, President and CEO, ANN INC. "These girls are so committed to making a difference in their communities and the world. I have so much confidence in the Fellows we have seen come through the program and cannot wait to be further inspired by this next group of young women."

"ANNpower Fellows are passionate and innovative trailblazers implementing truly effective and sustainable programs in their communities," said Alyse Nelson, President and CEO of Vital Voices Global Partnership. "We are proud to partner with ANN INC., together providing unique and life-changing opportunities for these young women leaders."

The young women who are selected as Fellows will also have the opportunity to participate in high profile global leadership events throughout the year.

This past year, six ANNpower Fellows were given the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to witness history in the making and travel to Burma to attend the Women's Forum Myanmar, the first of its kind in the country.

During the nine-day trip, the Fellows engaged with global women leaders while immersing themselves in the Burmese culture, a country which is undergoing rapid transformation as it opens up to dialogue and exchange both domestically and regionally.

"Being an ANNpower Fellow has been an amazing opportunity that has shaped who I am today. I learned so much by participating in this historic event, hearing stories from influential world leaders like Aung San Suu Kyi and Melanne Verveer. The experience was extremely powerful and I left inspired to do more with the project I'm implementing in my community." – Emily Kosse, 2012 ANNpower Fellow and Grantee.

During January and February, Ann Taylor, Ann Taylor Factory, LOFT and LOFT Outlet stores across the U.S., Puerto Rico, and Canada will support the search for the next generation of leaders in store with the ANNpower call-to-action: "Know a girl who wants to change the world?"

The 50 young women selected as ANNpower Fellows will also received a special discount card redeemable for two years at Ann Taylor and LOFT.

The ANNpower Vital Voices Initiative is a groundbreaking partnership between ANN INC. and Vital Voices Global Partnership to empower young women from across the U.S. with the leadership skills they need to affect global progress, invest in their communities and begin their journeys as the next generation of leaders.

ANN INC. has committed to invest more than $1.3 million in the ANNpower Initiative through its ANN Cares charitable platform.

The ANNpower Initiative aims to provide leadership skills and mentorship to 50 ANNpower Fellows annually. Through the projects the Fellows undertake, the ANNpower Initiative is designed to positively impact more than 5,500 members of their collective communities throughout the country each year.

As part of the Initiative, the ANNpower Advisory Council was announced at the 2012 Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting as a "Commitment to Action" and is comprised of influential women in media, business, and entertainment who have displayed exceptional leadership.

Members of the Council review and recommend outstanding grant proposals as well as serve as mentors to the Fellows and ambassadors of the ANNpower Vital Voices Initiative to the public.

The Council currently includes award-winning actress Kate Hudson, actress Jennifer Morrison ("Once Upon a Time," "House"), Anne Fulenwider, Editor-in-Chief of Marie Claire, Shelly Lazarus, Chairman Emeritus and former CEO of Ogilvy & Mather, Kay Krill, President and CEO of ANN INC., and Alyse Nelson, President and CEO of Vital Voices Global Partnership.

ANN INC. is the parent Company of Ann Taylor and LOFT, two of the leading women's specialty retail fashion brands in North America.

As of November 2, 2013, the Company operated 1,027 Ann Taylor, Ann Taylor Factory, LOFT and LOFT Outlet stores in 47 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Canada. Our Ann Taylor and LOFT brands are also available online in more than 100 countries worldwide at AnnTaylor.com and LOFT.com.

Vital Voices Global Partnership is a leading non-governmental organization that identifies, invests in and brings visibility to extraordinary women around the world by unleashing their leadership potential to transform lives and accelerate peace and prosperity in their communities.

Founded by Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 1997, the organization trains and mentors women leaders as agents of transformative change in economic development, human rights and political participation.

The Vital Voices Global Leadership Network includes more than 14,000 leaders representing 144 countries who have trained and mentored 500,000 additional women and girls in their communities. Visit vitalvoices.orgto learn more about the Vital Voices Global Leadership Network.

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