The finalists were announced September 23, 2013 by Leading Women Entrepreneurs, a media and events company that recognizes outstanding women business owners. These winners were celebrated at the "Unleashing Your Power" Top 25 event in Bedminster, NJ on December 5, 2013.
The finalists were selected for outstanding performance and achievement in business and economic innovation, community involvement and advocacy for women. Linda Wellbrock, Founder of Leading Women Entrepreneurs, stated that "This year's recipients are the epitome of role models and mentors for aspiring women entrepreneurs everywhere. The power of LWE class of 2013 is incredible. The criteria that these women were judged on include innovation, market potential, advocacy for women and community involvement. Not only does the Top 25 excel in these categories but together they are generating estimated revenues in excess of $5 billion, they employ tens of thousands and support hundreds of non-profits. They are an inspiration and the recognition event on December 5, 2013 presents phenomenal exposure for their efforts."
Joan Cozzoli Rooney is also CEO of Cozzoli Machine Company. As president, she has grown Cozzoli by increasing sales and revenue, initiating a renewed focus on product development and innovation, and improving the company's efficiencies and culture by advocating the need for more teamwork, training, cross-training, and information sharing. She is a member of the PMMI Global Marketing Committee and has been featured as a PMMI Export Success Story, appearing in videos such as How to Adapt to a Changing Global Landscape and How to Grow Your Exports.
Cozzoli Rooney is also co-owner of Express Employment Professionals, a National Corporate Sponsor for the Children's Miracle Network. Among other community activities, she is a member and donor of NAMI and a former member of the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation, where she served on the Administration Committee.