past event

2022 Socrates Benefit Dinner

We are delighted to come together at the 26th Annual Socrates Benefit Dinner in Aspen, Colorado on Saturday, July 9th. This benefit, co-chaired by Laura and Gary Lauder and Elizabeth and Lincoln Ellis, will honor the McNulty Family (Anne Welsh McNulty, Johnny McNulty, Brynne McNulty Rojas, and Kevin McNulty) for their tireless support of the Aspen Institute and Socrates Program, as well as their commitment to developing values-based leadership around the globe. It will also feature a conversation with Former United States Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates.

About the Honorees:

Anne Welsh McNulty has invested over $30 million in the last 10 years in elevating entrepreneurial leaders and nurturing promising students as co-founder and president of the McNulty Foundation. A trailblazer for women in finance, Anne was a managing director of Goldman Sachs and a senior executive of the Goldman Sachs Hedge Fund Strategies Group.

In honor of her late husband, Anne established the John P. McNulty Prize to recognize and support breakthrough leaders who have turned their talents and resources towards dismantling our toughest problems. The Prize is given in partnership with the Aspen Institute. She established the Anne Welsh McNulty Institute for Women’s Leadership at Villanova University and the McNulty Leadership Program at Wharton. Anne also founded the McNulty Scholars programs at St. Joseph’s University and Hunter College to propel young women to lead in STEM fields.

Anne serves on the Board of Trustees of the Aspen Institute, the American Academy of Rome, the Child Mind Institute, the Naples Children & Education Foundation, and the Board of Advisors at the Wharton School. She is a Founding Steward of B Lab Global, and a member of the Advisory Council for Ashesi University and Harvard Kennedy School’s Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business & Government. Anne earned her MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and was valedictorian of her graduating class at Villanova, where she also holds an honorary doctorate.

Johnny McNulty serves as the Director of Content for the McNulty Foundation, articulating and sharing the organization’s philosophy and mission. An experienced improv and sketch comedian, Johnny leads a partnership with American University’s Center for Media and Social Impact, spreading critical social messages through comedy. Johnny has performed with the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater, contributed to SNL’s ‘Weekend Update’ and is a freelance contributor to The Onion and co-authored the book Please Fire Me: Posts from the Revolting Workplace. Johnny holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania.

Brynne McNulty Rojas is a founder-entrepreneur with experience in real estate investment across the US and Latin America. She is the founder and CEO of Habi, a real estate technology firm making homeownership affordable across Latin America. Brynne spearheaded an initiative with the McNulty Foundation to convene leaders across Colombian society and sectors to create the Aspen Initiative for Colombia and to bring the first Socrates seminars to Latin America. Brynne earned an MBA with High Distinction from Harvard Business School, and received her Bachelor of Science from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Kevin McNulty is a comedy writer in Los Angeles. Previously, he worked as an investor at Bridgewater Associates, the World’s largest hedge fund, and as an Investment Banker at Goldman Sachs. Kevin has been involved in the strategy, design and expansion of the John P. McNulty Prize since its inception, and advising and supporting McNulty Scholars to lead in STEM fields. Kevin has a degree in Politics, Philosophy, and Economics from the University of Pennsylvania.

About the Event Speaker:

Robert M. Gates served as the 22nd Secretary of Defense from 2006 to 2011. He is the only Secretary of Defense in United States history to be asked to remain in office by a newly elected President. Dr. Gates served eight U.S. presidents across both parties. On Gates’s last day in office, President Barack Obama awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America’s highest civilian honor.

Gates served as Director of Central Intelligence from 1991 until 1993. He is the only career officer in CIA’s history to rise from entry-level employee to director. He served as deputy director of Central Intelligence from 1986 until 1989 and as assistant to the president and deputy national security adviser at the White House from January 20, 1989 until November 6, 1991, for President George H.W. Bush.

Gates currently is a principal in the consulting firm, Rice, Hadley, Gates & Manuel, LLC, with former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and former National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley. He is a member of the NCAA Board of Governors, currently serving as one of its five independent members. Additionally, he is a member of the national executive board of the Boy Scouts of America, where he served as president of the National Eagle Scout Association from 1996-2006 and National President of the Boy Scouts of America from 2014-2016. He has also served on the board of directors of Starbucks, the board of directors and executive committee of the American Council on Education, the board of directors of the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges.

A native of Kansas, Gates received his bachelor’s degree from William & Mary, his master’s degree in history from Indiana University, and his doctorate in Russian and Soviet history from Georgetown University. In 1967, he was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force and served as an intelligence officer at Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri.



Event information
Sat Jul 9, 2022
Aspen, Colorado