100 Women We Love: Class of 2006

Michelle Aschenbrenner
As community outreach director for Microsoft’s Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Employee Resource Group (GLEAM), Aschenbrenner knows good business. “Diversity is a business imperative because everyone works best when they feel ‘valued’ and diverse viewpoints produce innovation,” said Aschenbrenner, who has worked as a program manager for Microsoft for 12 years. “People who are comfortable and who feel included are more effective as employees—more creative and committed.” Among Aschenbrenner’s accomplishment are initiating Microsoft’s sponsorship for WNBA team the Seattle Storm; raising more than $10,000 for the Lifelong AIDS Walk last year; and getting married to her partner in Maui. “Perhaps I am most proud of the strong partnerships and reputation for Microsoft GLEAM that my community outreach counterpart and I have built within our community over the past year through grass roots efforts,” said Aschenbrenner.
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