Episode 198: She Made a Difference for a Living

Episode 198: She Made a Difference for a Living

Someone at the memorial service on Monday referred to her as a homespun philanthropist, though I doubt she would have liked that description. Her wit was too sharp to fit the mellow image of homespun. As for philanthropist? She once said, “That’s such a pretentious word.”

Welcome back to the Love Your Story podcast. The clip I’ve just shared comes from a woman’t obituary that died probably 25 years ago. 

So many years ago, I can’t remember the date, I ripped an article out of the Boston Globe newspaper called, “She made a difference for a living.” The article is yellowed and brittle, and if I had to guess I’d say it’s around 25 years old. Stay tuned in today’s episode for how Elizabeth Noyce became a one-woman economic development corporation in the 80’s and 90’s, without the Internet, and see what her story means to you.


When Elizabeth Noyce died Ellen Goodman of the Boston Globe wrote an article that highlighted her life. I’ve been through many a business class where we are asked to write our own obituary and what we want to be known for/what our business wants to be known for, so we can plan now and reverse engineer what we do. I doubt that Elizabeth Noyce did this, but I’m sure any of us would be very pleased indeed to have a write-up like this done about us after we pass.

Elizabeth Noyce was as unpretentious as her adopted state of Maine. She could walk down …

Tune into the audio program to hear the rest of the article.

One of the reasons we share stories is to show how things can be done. Stories are used to inspire, to initiate deeper thought, to shine a light on things. Today’s story of a woman’s life who lived decades earlier, shines a light on moral fiber, on the extraordinary, on a person who created good in the world on purpose, who forsook her own limelight living for the more understated. You may be thinking, “Sure, If I had millions of dollars I could do good too.” But I have to ask…would you, maybe you would? But now, right now we still have a responsibility to do good. We always have something to work with. We can always do good in our communities – This story is just a reminder to check in with yourself – are you caught in “he who has the most toys wins” mindset? Are you stuck in what’s in it for me? Is looking good and being in the limelight more important than doing good? As Elizabeth Noyce said, we can all just hope to make a little difference in our own communities. Are you creating peace, support for community and neighbors, hope and positive energy? Are you, if you are able, creating abundance for others in positive ways, or are you caught up in the fear, violence, the frantic stretch for control that permeates the neighborhoods and mindsets across the country? 

Might I suggest that for a living, in our own individual ways, that we intentionally strive to make a positive difference. Choose light, choose love, choose growth, choose goodness. Choose sharing. 

In order to create a greater more positive connection, I’ve created the 21 Life Connection Challenges – Group Style. Do you have a group you’re involved in that wants a fun way to connect and create good in their lives and in the world?


Thanks for being here today. Live Big! Live Intentional. Live Well.

About the author, Lori

Lori is the host and producer of the Love Your Story podcast, a podcast dedicated to sharing candid interviews and conversations about living our best life stories on purpose. Lori pulls no punches in capturing interviews that shine a light on how we make it through the hard stuff – stress, anxiety, suicide, eating disorders, rape, the death of children, abuse, divorce and the real stuff we have to deal with. But, she also shares interviews with Olympians and incredible athletes, life coaches, therapists, and people who are changing the world – most often these two categories are one and the same. She has a master’s degree in Folklore--her research focuses on the personal narrative. She is the author of six books and over 100 magazine and newspaper articles, including her latest, L.I.F.E. – Living Intentional and Fearless Every Day. She consults with individuals on a personal and business level in helping them find their stories, reframe the ones that are holding them back, and manage the stories they currently tell themselves in order to create the story they personally want to live.

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