In 1998 Ann-Marie founded Embolden, a leading digital communications and marketing firm specializing in high-growth sectors, including financial services, philanthropy, and health care. Embolden was acquired by Crown Philanthropic Solutions in 2014. Ann-Marie served as executive vice president at Crown until Crown was acquired by RenPSG in September 2016. Also in 2016, Ann-Marie became a partner in One Celebrations, founded by Laura McKnight in 2010, and the company was relaunched under the name Embolden.
With more than 20 years’ experience working with high-growth businesses, Ann-Marie is an expert in unlocking the contemporary employee mindset through technology-backed tools to accelerate workplace productivity. Throughout her career, Ann-Marie has brought to all projects an unparalleled expertise in new and emerging Internet technology, highly personalized service, sound business development strategy, and a deep understanding of the issues and challenges today's businesses face related to culture, return on human capital investment, and internal and external digital communications strategies.
As Embolden’s reputation grew, so did its reach. Embolden served an international client list, and Ann-Marie became a nationally-recognized speaker on workplace culture, social impact, and digital communications issues. As a result, Ann-Marie and Embolden are the grateful recipients of many awards and recognitions: Ann-Marie was named the 2009 Rhode Island Small Business Person of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration. In recognition of its progressive work culture, Embolden is a three-time winner of the prestigious Alfred P. Sloan Award for Business Excellence in Workplace Flexibility. This distinction ranked Embolden in the top 20% of employers nationally in terms of flexible work programs, policies, and culture. In 2008, YWCA Northern Rhode Island honored Ann-Marie with a Women of Achievement Award, given to business leaders and advocates who work for the economic empowerment of women. That same year, Embolden received the State of Rhode Island Minority Business Enterprise of the Year Award. The Providence Business News named Ann-Marie a Woman to Watch in the technical services industry in 2010. In 2011, it named Embolden one of the state’s best places to work. Forty companies were judged based on confidential surveys of employees and management reports compiled by Best Companies Group. In addition, Embolden twice won the Council on Foundations’ Wilmer Shields Rich Awards Program, which recognizes and encourages excellence in communications by foundations and corporate giving programs.
Ann-Marie's commitment to innovation in life, work, and community is reflected not only in her professional life, but also in her personal growth and success. For example, Ann-Marie and Laura McKnight collaborated on the research for a book called Do Good, Feel Better, Laura's second book, published in January 2017, for which Ann-Marie wrote the well-received foreword. Ann-Marie has served on a variety of nonprofit boards and is currently a director on the Board of Rhode Island Foundation, one of the nation's largest, oldest, and most well-respected community foundations. Ann-Marie earned both a degree in business administration from Bryant University and a Master of Social Work degree from Rhode Island College.
Ann-Marie and Laura continue their commitment to philanthropy through Embolden's work.