Thursday, March 30, 2017

I Wear a Badge: Susan Shannon Engeleiter, Delta Gamma

The theme for Women’s History Month in 2017 is “Honoring Trailblazing Women in Business and Labor.” Throughout March, we’ll be sharing the stories of sorority women who made history in these areas. The efforts of these sorority women advance the cause of all women, and we are grateful for their efforts.

From Data Recognition Corporation (credit)
Meet Susan Shannon Engeleiter: CEO of Data Recognition Corporation (DRC), first woman to hold the position of administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration, and a proud sorority woman.

Engeleiter was initiated into the Omega chapter of Delta Gamma at the University of Wisconsin – Madison in 1970 where she studied English and communications. She later earned a Juris Doctor from the University of Wisconsin Law School.

After completing her law degree, Engeleiter entered politics and became the youngest woman, at age 22, to ever have been elected to serve in a state legislature in the United States. She was elected to the Wisconsin State Senate in 1980, where she served as the assistant minority leader from 1982-84, and as minority leader from 1984-89. Engeleiter ran for a U.S. Senate seat in 1988, but was defeated by a narrow margin.

In 1989, President George H.W. Bush nominated her as the administrator of the Small Business Administration. She was the first woman in history to hold this title, and served in the position until 1991. During her term as administrator, Engeleiter was also appointed chairwoman of the National Women’s Business Council. From 1991-96 she served on the President’s Export Council.

She worked for Honeywell International Inc. as the vice president of government affairs leading the Honeywell Home and Business Control business and working on legislative and regulatory initiatives to support the organization’s goals. Engeleiter joined DRC as the president and chief operating officer in 1998, and was promoted to her current role as CEO and president of the company in 2006. As the leader of DRC she manages 12 locations, 650 full-time employees and 5,000 seasonal employees who provide education, survey and document services to clients throughout the U.S.

  • Data Recognition Corporation (n.d.) Susan Shannon Engeleiter. Retrieved from
  • Data Recognition Corporation (2006, December 11). DRC names Susan Engeleiter chief executive officer and president. [Press release]. Retrieved from
  • Executive profile: Susan Shannon Engeleiter. (n.d.) Bloomberg. Retrieved from
  • Susan Engeleiter. (n.d.). In Wikipedia. Retrieved March 1, 2017, from