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Photo Credit: The Economic Club of Washington, D.C./Joshua Roberts

The Arne M. Sorenson Excellence in Leadership Awards

Presented to: Linda Rabbitt, Gina F. Adams, and The A. James & Alice B. Clark Foundation | June 23, 2022

The Arne M. Sorenson Excellence in Leadership Awards

The Arne M. Sorenson Excellence in Leadership Awards were created to honor our friend and Officer of the Board of Directors of The Economic Club of Washington, D.C. While serving as the President and CEO of Marriott, International Inc., the largest hospitality company in the world, Arne was chairing the Economic Club's Global Initiative Task Force from 2017 to 2021, leading efforts to expand the Club’s international programming and visibility.

The Arne M. Sorenson Excellence in Leadership Awards recognize the outstanding achievement and dedication of leaders whose contributions to the Economic Club and the community demonstrate the Economic Club’s mission to strengthen our region through business, civic, diplomatic and philanthropic leadership.

The attributes of this award are reflected in Chairman David Rubenstein’s description of Mr. Sorenson:

Talented, thoughtful, compassionate, and generous with his time. Arne was the best that America can hope for from its business leaders and will long remain a role model for aspiring and active CEOs and community leaders. The Club was fortunate to have his engagement. - David Rubenstein

These awards include two categories: individual and organization. 



Linda Rabbitt

Linda Rabbitt founded rand* construction corporation in 1989 and currently serves as Chairman.  Under Linda’s leadership, rand* has grown from seven employees to the largest woman-founded, woman-owned, commercial general contractor in the nation, with additional offices in five major cities across the U.S.

Over her nearly 40-year career, Linda and rand* have won numerous awards and recognition, including over 200 craftsmanship awards, Top Workplace, 100 Most Powerful Women in DC, Most Admired CEO in Construction, and many more.          

The same leadership attributes that Linda utilized to grow her business, she also shared with local organizations, including the Economic Club. She joined the Economic Club of Washington as a member in August of 1992 and by 1993 she began her service on the Board of Directors which continued until 2001.  After a hiatus, Linda rejoined the Board in July of 2008 and is presently still serving as a Director.  She has also served on various board committees including Membership and Nominating.  She is the longest serving Director in the Club’s history.  

In 2013, as the Economic Club took on a strategic review, Linda served on the committee that made recommendations on the roadmap for the next five years. In the fall of 2019, The Linda Rabbitt and John Whalen Family Foundation contributed $100,000 to the Scholars to Leaders Legacy Fund enabling emergency grants and special stipends for Economic Club scholarship winners.   


Gina F.  Adams

Gina Adams is the Senior Vice President for Government and Regulatory Affairs at FedEx Corporation. She shapes and promotes, in the political and policy arenas, the interests of all FedEx Corporation operating companies, which have over 600,000 employees serving more than 220 countries and territories.  As a lawyer and the company’s top lobbyist, she works with Administration officials, members of Congress, the diplomatic community and industry associations on domestic and international commerce, infrastructure, and transportation issues. For the second year in a row, Gina was recently named one of the Washingtonian’s most influential people shaping policy. She earned her B.S. degree from American University, her J.D. degree from Howard University School of Law, and earned an LLM degree in international and comparative law from Georgetown University Law Center.

Gina joined the Economic Club of Washington in 2012 and began serving on the Board of Directors the following year. She joined the Education Committee in 2015, became its Co-Chair one year later and Chair the next year. She became Vice Chair of the Board in 2021.

Over the last six years, Gina has led the Education committee through the expansion of the Club’s Scholars to Leaders programs which provide internships, mentoring, alumni engagement, academic enrichment opportunities, and graduate-level fellowships for public school students from Washington, D.C. These member-driven programs ensure that scholars gain exposure to the business world and valuable career experience. Gina Adams, a skilled interviewer herself, interviewed David Rubenstein and Sheila Johnson at Club events.

In 2020, Gina served as Co-Chair of the Economic Club’s Racial Equity Task Force that created a strategic framework to make significant changes and enhance diversity, equity, and inclusion in all aspects of the Club’s operations and programming.



The A. James & Alice B. Clark Foundation - Robert Flanagan, Trustee

In 1987, A. James Clark founded what is now The A. James & Alice B. Clark Foundation, supporting more than 580 local organizations over 25 years. Before his passing in 2015, Mr. Clark requested that the foundation sunset within a decade, maximizing its impact by using today’s money to solve today’s problems. With that new direction, in 2016 the Foundation both scaled up its operations and developed specific strategic areas of focus.

Since then, the Clark Foundation has invested in more than 350 organizations and institutions across three strategic areas: educating engineers, improving the lives of veterans and their families, and providing members of the D.C. community the best opportunity to thrive. By 2026, the Clark Foundation will have deployed over $1 billion in funding over a 10-year period, with over $324 million having been invested in the D.C. region.

Mr. Clark was a longtime supporter of the Economic Club and the Clark Foundation continues that support today through investments made in the David M. Rubenstein/Economic Club of Washington, D.C. Scholarship Program. Beginning in 2018, the Foundation invested $100,000 in the scholarship program, making it possible to add five additional college scholarships, per year, for graduating seniors of D.C. public and charter schools. By 2023, the Foundation will have invested a total of $600,000 in the scholarship program and supported 30 scholars.

Robert J. Flanagan, a Trustee of the Clark Foundation and an Economic Club Member, will accept The Arne M. Sorenson Excellence in Leadership Award on behalf of the Foundation.


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