ANN INC. and Vital Voices Global Partnership Announce 2013 ANNpower Fellows

50 Girls from 23 states and Puerto Rico will receive leadership training and mentoring at the second annual ANNpower Vital Voices Leadership Forum

SOURCE: ANN INC.

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NEW YORK, March 1, 2013 / 3BL Media /PRNewswire/ -- ANN INC. (NYSE:ANN), the parent Company of Ann Taylor and LOFT, and Vital Voices Global Partnership are proud to announce the 2013 ANNpower Fellows.

In January 2013, ANN INC. and Vital Voices launched a nationwide search for young women who embody the skills and have the potential to be the next leaders of their generation. Through a competitive national application process, ANN INC. and Vital Voices selected 50 girls, who are high school sophomore and juniors, from across the country to become ANNpower Fellows and participate in the 2013 ANNpower Vital Voices Leadership Forum in Washington, D.C., April 1-4. 

The newly selected Fellows hail from 23 states and Puerto Rico and have a common interest in creating innovative solutions to challenges in their communities.  Their ideas range from creating mentorship programs to addressing environmental issues to reducing childhood obesity. They are a diverse and dynamic group that includes girls like Jane, a sophomore who wants to make a difference in her hometown, Oberlin, Ohio by developing a mentoring program for 4th and 5th graders to increase the number of girls entering STEM fields.  To meet Jane and the rest of the 2013 ANNpower Fellows, visit ANNpower.org.

"We are so inspired by our 2013 ANNpower Fellows."said Kay Krill, president and CEO of ANN INC., "These women are emerging leaders and are committed to serving their communities.  It is an honor and privilege to play a part in their path to leadership in partnership with Vital Voices."

At the three-day ANNpower Leadership Forum, the 50 Fellows will undergo a comprehensive leadership training program to equip them with the skills to take on leadership roles as young women and create meaningful change in their communities.  In addition, they will be mentored by internationally renowned women leaders who are part of the Vital Voices Global Leadership Network, ANN INC. executives, including Kay Krill, and Vital Voices president and CEO Alyse Nelson.

"We are committed to empowering young women to lead change, and I am so proud that we have ANN INC. as our partner in this important work.  The ANNpower Vital Voices Leadership Forum provides a unique opportunity to develop the skills of talented young women and connects our Fellows as a powerful network of peers that continues beyond the Forum; it's these emerging voices who will bring progress to their communities as the next generation of leaders." said Vital Voices president and CEO, Alyse Nelson.

Upon completion of the program, Fellows are tasked to take their first steps as leaders and create a project that will affect a positive social change in their respective communities. Each Fellow will be eligible to receive an ANNpower Project Grant to put her ideas into action. Through their projects, ANNpower Fellows will create a ripple effect that is estimated to positively impact more than 5,000 members of their collective communities throughout the country each year.

For more information about the ANNpower Vital Voices Initiative, visit ANNpower.org.

About the ANNpower Vital Voices Initiative
The ANNpower Vital Voices Initiative is a groundbreaking partnership between ANN INC. and Vital Voices Global Partnership to empower young women from across the U.S. with the leadership skills they need to affect global progress, invest in their communities and begin their journeys as the next generation of leaders.  ANN INC. has committed to invest more than $1.3 million over a four-year period in the ANNpower Initiative through its ANN Cares charitable platform. The ANNpower Initiative aims to provide leadership skills and mentorship to 50 ANNpower Fellows annually and is designed to positively impact more than 5,000 members of their collective communities throughout the country each year.

As part of the Initiative, the ANNpower Advisory Council was announced at the 2012 Clinton Global Initiative as a "Commitment to Action" and is comprised of influential women in media, business, and entertainment who have displayed exceptional leadership. Members of the Council review, score, and recommend outstanding grant proposals as well as serve as mentors to the Fellows and ambassadors of the ANNpower Vital Voices Initiative to the public. The Council continues to be developed and currently includes award-winning actress Kate Hudson, actress Jennifer Morrison ("Once Upon a Time," "House"), Kay Krill, President and CEO of ANN INC., and Alyse Nelson, President and CEO of Vital Voices Global Partnership. Visit ANNpower.org or ResponsiblyANN.com for more information.

About ANN INC.
ANN INC. is the parent Company of Ann Taylor and LOFT, two of the leading women's specialty retail fashion brands in North America.  The Company operates 981 Ann Taylor, Ann Taylor Factory, LOFT and LOFT Outlet stores in 47 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Canada as of October 27, 2012, as well as online at AnnTaylor.com and LOFT.com.  Visit ANNINC.com for more information (NYSE: ANN).

About Vital Voices Global Partnership
Vital Voices Global Partnership is a leading non-governmental organization that identifies, invests in and brings visibility to extraordinary women around the world by unleashing their leadership potential to transform lives and accelerate peace and prosperity in their communities. Founded by Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 1997, the organization trains and mentors women leaders as agents of transformative change in economic development, human rights and political participation. The Vital Voices Global Leadership Network includes more than 14,000 leaders representing 144 countries who have trained and mentored 500,000 additional women and girls in their communities. Visit www.vitalvoices.org to learn more.

Copyright 2013 PR Newswire. All Rights Reserved.

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KEYWORDS: ANN INC, Vital Voices Global partnership, ANNpower, Ann Taylor, Loft, ANNpower fellows, Vital Voices, community

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