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Babson College Board of Trustees Announces Five New Members

December 15, 2021 GMT
Babson College (PRNewsfoto/Babson College)
Babson College (PRNewsfoto/Babson College)
Babson College (PRNewsfoto/Babson College)

WELLESLEY, Mass., Dec. 15, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Babson College, ranked No. 1 for entrepreneurship education, has announced five new appointments to the college’s Board of Trustees: Andrew Butler ’84, Wasi Mahi ‘21, Chris Malone ‘00, MBA′07, Somia Farid Silber ‘15, and Rachel Zelcer MBA ’21.

“Babson College benefits from the diverse, dedicated and experienced leadership of our Board of Trustees,” says Babson President Stephen Spinelli Jr. MBA ’92, PhD. “I look forward to working collaboratively with the Board’s newest members as we continue to revolutionize entrepreneurship education and capitalize on the accelerating need for learning and knowledge.”

The new Trustees, all Babson alumni, were elected at the Board’s October meeting. An accomplished group of entrepreneurs and business leaders — including two members of the Class of 2021 appointed to advance the Board’s focus on student experience — Babson’s new Trustees represent industries ranging from insurance to pharmaceuticals to technology:


  • Andrew Butler ’84: Andrew Butler is the Executive Chairman for Cottingham & Butler, the 5th largest privately owned insurance broker in the U.S., the 25th largest insurance broker in the U.S., and a recognized leader in offering innovative property & casualty and employee benefit insurance solutions. Andrew is responsible for leading Cottingham & Butler, Inc. to maximize prosperity, growth and the ongoing development of its employees, requiring respect for people all the while providing services of exceptional quality to the clients of Cottingham & Butler, Inc. Prior to joining Cottingham & Butler, Andy was President and CEO of Butler Insurance Service, Inc. and Butler Benefit Service, Inc. There he spent his time building the organizations to be premier provider of employee benefit consulting and claim management services.
  • Wasi Mahi ’21: Wasi Mahi is an Assistant Inventory Manager within the Supply Chain and Integrated Planning unit at Macy’s. Wasi helps optimize omni-channel inventory levels, so customers across the nation can enjoy the styles they want, when and where they want them. Prior to Macy’s, Wasi completed his Bachelor’s at Babson, where he served as President of the Student Government Association (2019-2020). In this capacity he oversaw the Senate, which works on a variety of initiatives to improve the student experience, in addition to funding clubs and influencing academic policy. Wasi also worked closely with the administration to better convey student interests and increase communication, strengthening partnership opportunities for the future. After ending his term, he went on to work with President Spinelli as a Strategic Consultant on the early development of the Arthur M. Blank School of Entrepreneurial Leadership.
  • Chris Malone ’00, MBA′07: Chris Malone is the Chief Executive Officer and a Board Member at Applause. Chris joined Applause in 2013 and served as both Chief Financial Officer and President, prior to his appointment as CEO. Since joining Applause, Chris has taken the company through multiple rounds of financing with leading investors such as Goldman Sachs and Accenture and stewarded the company through its acquisition by Vista Equity Partners in 2017. Chris has been instrumental in Applause’s growth and international expansion. Prior to joining Applause, Chris worked at NTT Data, a top five global IT service provider, as the CFO of the North American Business, responsible for financial oversight and operations of a billion-dollar operating unit. Chris also serves as the Chair of Babson’s College Advisory Board and is appointed to the Board of Trustees in that capacity.
  • Somia Farid Silber ’15: Somia Farid Silber is Vice President of eCommerce at Edible Arrangements®, the pioneer and worldwide leader in innovative gifts and treats including its signature fresh fruit arrangements, baked goods, platters, flowers and more. On behalf of the brand and its 1,000+ franchise locations worldwide, Somia drives strategic planning, execution, and optimization of all online marketing efforts, including digital media, CRM and eCommerce strategy. Since taking over Edible’s eCommerce division in 2019, Somia has been instrumental in the rollouts of new categories, price points and occasions that have introduced Edible to untapped audiences and increased online revenue for the brand. In 2020, Somia was awarded a spot in What Franchise’s 100 Influential Women in Franchising: Ones to Watch.
  • Rachel Zelcer MBA ’21: Rachel Zelcer is a consultant in the Commercial Advisory group at Syneos Health, an integrated biopharmaceuticals solutions organization. Rachel works with her team to help clients maximize the value of their portfolio and organization. She brings six years of experience in the health and life sciences sector working at organizations such as Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, LabCentral Inc., and Biogen. Prior to joining Syneos Health, Rachel was completing her MBA at Babson. She served as President of the Graduate Student Council (2020-2021) and acted as the voice of her classmates while partnering with administration to navigate the challenges and opportunities brought on by the pandemic. She was recognized by Poets & Quant as a ” 2021 MBA to Watch ” and was the recipient of the prestigious Roger W. Babson Award as well as the Alumni & Friends Award.

“We are thrilled to welcome this accomplished group of leaders to the Babson College Board of Trustees,” said Jeffery S. Perry ’87, P′23, Chair. “The Board is committed to advancing Babson’s mission to empower entrepreneurial leaders who create value, and the expertise and deep commitment to the College that Andrew, Wasi, Chris, Somia and Rachel bring will serve to enhance and accelerate our work.”

Jeff Perry was named Chair of the Babson College Board of Trustees in May. Elected for his intentional, purposeful, and authentic commitment to Babson. He is Founder and CEO of Lead Mandates LLC, a business and leadership advisory firm, and recently retired as Global Client Service Partner at Ernst & Young (EY).

Jeff Perry was recently selected to serve on the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB) Council of Board Chairs. The council, established in 2020, leverages the experience, perspectives, and insights of its members with active leadership roles for the development of AGB expertise designed to strengthen strategic board governance across higher education.

In addition to adding five new members to the Board of Trustees, Babson named nine Trustees Emeriti at the October board meeting. They include Marla M. Capozzi MBA′96; Karen K. Chandor MBA′74, CFA; Paul W. Chisholm MBA′82; Timothy A. DeMello ’81, P′18; Thomas F. Gilbane Jr. ‘70; David F. Lamere ‘82; John C. Merritt ‘61; Richard A. Renwick ‘79; Martha DiMatteo Vorlicek ’81.

About Babson College
Babson College prepares and empowers entrepreneurial leaders who create, grow and steward sustainable economic and social value everywhere. We shape the entrepreneurial leaders our world needs most: those with strong functional knowledge, skills, and vision to navigate change, accommodate ambiguity, surmount complexity, and motivate teams in organizations of all types and sizes. A global leader in entrepreneurship education recognized by U.S. News & World Report, our undergraduate, graduate, executive programs, and partnership opportunities are tailored to global dynamics.

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