Mary Ellen Jones, vice president, Commercial Engines Sales, Asia/Pacific & China, was recently named one of Connecticut's "8 Remarkable Women in Business" for 2015 by the Hartford Business Journal. The central theme of the Hartford Business Journal's search to find remarkable women in Connecticut was the importance of mentorship in their lives.
A contributing factor to Jones' success early on in her career were key mentors when she joined Pratt & Whitney in Washington, D.C., as the assistant to the director of government relations. Her supervisors provided Jones with the opportunity to attend and report on congressional hearings as well as participate in meetings with members of Congress and Pratt & Whitney executives.
"My mentors put a lot of trust in me, which built my confidence and instilled a great deal of company loyalty," Jones said. "This gave me a lot of latitude to enhance my role and take initiative."
Such responsibility and visibility opened the door for her next opportunity at Pratt & Whitney's headquarters in East Hartford, Connecticut. There, she carried on the importance of mentoring new talent through empowering her team and providing real-time coaching and feedback. Her role as a mentor extends to employees outside of her organization whom she counsels to seek opportunities that will make them excited to come to work every day and contribute to Pratt & Whitney's success.
One of her mentees, Julie Cabrera, communications specialist, Global Supply Chain, said Jones is a key person in her life for career guidance, "As my mentor, Mary Ellen has played an important role in supporting my career at Pratt & Whitney," Cabrera said. "She inspires me to always do my best, take on new challenges and continue to push myself to develop my communication and leadership skills. Mary Ellen is truly a transformational leader who many look to as a role model."
Another mentee of Jones, Eric Brenson, customer support engineer, KC-46 Tanker, reiterated the importance of her guidance.
"Mary Ellen has been an inspiration and a beacon for me and my career. She has made a difference in my professional life by helping me sort out my goals, plan the building blocks to get to where I want to be and by providing me with the tools and the contacts to be prepared before and during each step," Brenson said. "She has inspired me to be all I can be, and one day I hope to emulate her and inspire others."
Jones will officially be honored by the Hartford Business Journal at a celebratory reception on May 14.