Laurie Dien, VICE PRESIDENT/EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR FOR PROGRAMS
Laurie Dien grew up in St. Louis with dreams first of designing toys and later entire playgrounds. She went on to earn a B.A. from Barnard and a Ph.D. in environmental psychology from the CUNY Graduate School. Only then did she realize that her true motivation was a desire to improve the lives of young people in general. That led her to the Hasbro Children’s Foundation and ultimately to The Pinkerton Foundation in 1997. More than a decade ago, Laurie was instrumental in the founding of the Career Internship Network, a source of education and professional development opportunities for organizations that offer internships to thousands of high school students each year. She continues to have a special fondness for programs that provide career exploration for all young people and education and employment opportunities for those who are out of work and out of school. Laurie is also one of the architects of the Science Research Mentoring Consortium. Currently in its third year, the initiative—now known as the Pinkerton Science Scholars Program—offers intensive science training and one-on-one mentoring in an authentic laboratory research project to talented high school students from disadvantaged backgrounds. That’s a long way from the toy box (or the sandbox, for that matter), but we see evidence every day that Laurie’s still having a lot of fun.