Therese Antone was born in Central Falls, the third of seven children raised by Florence Smith Antone and George Antone, a cobbler. After graduation from Cumberland High School, she earned a bachelor’s degree from Salve Regina University, a master’s from Villanova University, and a Doctor of Education degree from Harvard University. She also completed the senior executive program at the MIT Sloan School of Management.
Sister Therese’s career has included teaching at all levels. She has served as principal of a coeducational secondary school and Director of Finance and Secondary Education for those Sisters of Mercy serving in Rhode Island and Central America. Prior to her accession to the presidency of Salve Regina University in 1994, she had been a faculty member, the Director of Development, Vice President/Institutional Advancement, and the Executive Vice President for Corporate Affairs and Advancement.
Under Sister Antone’s leadership, Salve Regina’s national rankings and student profile have risen and its endowment has grown from $1 million to $36 million. The university has spent $76 million on renovations and expansions and has received numerous awards for restoring the historic mansions, cottages, and gatehouses on its campus.
In 1996, Sister Therese was instrumental in pushing Congress to establish the Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy at Salve Regina–a move that has brought high-profile leaders to the campus and enhanced the university’s reputation.
Among the many boards and committees on which Sister Therese serves are: Commission on Women in Higher Education of the American Council on Education; Board of Directors of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU); Board of Directors of AAA Southern New England; Rhode Island Independent Higher Education Association; Board of Trustees – Bank of Newport; Board of Advisors – Fleet Bank; Board of Advisors – U.S. Naval War College; Board of Trustees – Newport Art Museum; Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council; Board of Governors of Newport Health Care Corporation; and the Finance Council of the Diocese of Providence.
In addition to many other honors and awards, Sister Therese was the 1998 recipient of the National Conference Humanitarian Award and the 1998 John E. Fogarty Achievement Award. Observed her long-time friend, Nuala Pell, wife of Claiborne Pell, “I’m amazed she’s a Sister of Mercy. . .I can see her as a [United States] senator.”
Among the many boards and committees on which Sister Therese currently serves are : Commission on Women in Higher Education of the American Council on Education, Board of Directors – AAA Southern New England, Rhode Island Independent Higher Education Association, Board of Trustees – BankNewport, Board of Advisors – U.S. Naval War College, Board of Trustees – Newport Art Museum, Rhode Island Public Expenditures Council, Finance Council of the Diocese of Providence, Chair – Blue Hen Investment Company, Board of Directors – Lifespan Corporation, and the Newport County Fund of the Rhode Island Foundation.