Queens University Names Diane Morais 2022 BusinessWoman of the Year | Queens University of Charlotte
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Queens University Names Diane Morais 2022 BusinessWoman of the Year

Queens University Names Diane Morais 2022 BusinessWoman of the Year
November 17, 2022

by Keith Pierce

Queens University of Charlotte is pleased to honor Diane “Di” Morais with the 38th annual Charlotte BusinessWoman of the Year award, which celebrates outstanding female executives who have demonstrated a significant and ongoing commitment to the Charlotte region.

As President of Consumer and Commercial Banking at Ally Financial Inc., Morais is the driving force behind the nation’s largest digital-only bank. Morais is being recognized in part for her unwavering commitment to financial and social inclusion, which has revolutionized the banking industry. Under her leadership, Ally became the first major bank to eliminate overdraft fees – a source of stress and confusion that disproportionately impacted historically marginalized communities in Charlotte and beyond.

"Di is a dynamic leader who has distinguished herself in the banking world and beyond," said Queens University President Dan Lugo. "Throughout her remarkable career, she's used creative thinking and bold courage to revolutionize industry practices and disrupt the norms--particularly those impacting economic mobility. Her strategic vision and innovative approach to business have made her one of banking's most influential leaders, and her record of service is one of just many reasons her leadership philosophies so closely align with Queens' motto, non ministrari, sed ministrare (not to be served, but to serve). It is a great privilege and honor to recognize her with this year's Charlotte BusinessWoman of the Year award."

Morais’ commitment to financial and social inclusion goes beyond business initiatives. She was instrumental in creating and launching the Ally Charitable Foundation in 2020, which was established to give back and serve communities across Ally’s geographic footprint. The foundation has now invested about $80 million in programs that work to provide affordable housing, financial literacy, workforce development and other opportunities to people in low- and moderate-income communities. Customers have also benefited from her commitment to these areas. Under her leadership, the bank's Community Reinvestment Act program has secured "outstanding" ratings for its innovative lending and investments to support affordable housing and economic mobility.

"I am so incredibly proud that Di Morais is being recognized as Queens University's BusinessWoman of the Year," said Ally Financial CEO Jeffrey Brown. "I have had the great fortune of working closely with Di for more than 20 years, and she has always exemplified servant leadership in how she operates – caring for her teammates, our customers, and communities. Di is always someone that makes the right choices – she is guided by a strong moral compass – and, I am proud to call her a leader, teammate, and friend. This award is another example of the impact Di has made in our local community and beyond."

In addition to overseeing more than $182 billion in client assets across deposits, mortgage, brokerage, wealth management, personal lending, credit cards and corporate finance, Morais leads customer care and operations, as well as Ally’s Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) program. As a result of her contributions, Morais has been recognized by American Banker as one of the most powerful women in banking for consecutive years since 2016.

Previous Charlotte BusinessWoman of the Year winners include Tanya S. Blackmon, former executive vice president and chief diversity, inclusion and equity officer for Novant Health, Dena Diorio, Mecklenburg County manager; Peggy Brookhouse, former president of Luquire George Andrews (LGA); Carol Lovin, executive vice president and system chief of staff for Atrium Health; Theresa Drew, retired managing partner of Deloitte; Andrea B. Smith, former chief administrative officer of Bank of America; Susan Devore, former president and chief executive officer of Premier, Inc.; and Lynn Good, president and chief executive officer of Duke Energy.

The Charlotte BusinessWoman of the Year award will be presented to Morais at a Queens luncheon on Thursday, March 9, 2023. To register for the luncheon visit: www.queens.edu/bwoy.

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