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速 All Things Diversity & Inclusion

SEPT/OCT 2012 $25.00



I am

Sodexo Marit ident Senior Vice Pres Caribbean & o ic ex M of f Gul

Engaged employees drive business success. That’s why we’re committed to creating an environment where each employee contributes to his or her

Lenarda ces Manager Human Resour Tanzania

Sterling Corporate Executive Chef Supply Management, Test Kitchen United States

full potential. By fostering a culture based on mutual respect and inclusion, we make every day a better day at Sodexo. But don’t take our word for it. Hear what our employees have to say about working

Aaron Vice President, HR & Communications Sodexo Remote Sites Asia-Australia

To view these employees’ stories, scan the smar t tag or visit Get this app at

Vijaya s Manager Operation India

for the world’s leader in Quality of Life services on



The big picture



James Gorman EDITOR


April W. Klimley

Welcome to the 11th annual WomenWorthWatching® issue and the class of 2013 senior women executives and the companies that employ them. This annual issue is designed to highlight and award companies that support and promote women in leadership. This award is shared with the women executives that have demonstrated outstanding achievement and leadership in their careers. In this year’s award issue, nearly 200 women executives share their views on the importance of education as a critical success factor in their careers. These women have often had to deal with bias and prejudice. They talk about mentors, sponsors, advanced degrees, and managing career and family. And the consensus is that education is the key to opening the doors of opportunity and should be the top priority for our young people and strategically for our country. Another consensus is that girls need to be encouraged early to pursue studies in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Many of the executives are engaged in working with schools and students to give young girls real life examples of how to achieve success in life and in a career and to understand the benefits of working in the STEM fields. All these executives agree that without education, opportunities and financial rewards are significantly diminished if not altogether denied. Profiles in Diversity Journal congratulates all the companies and executives profiled in this year’s issue. We have now passed the 1000 profiles mark, and this year, participation is 50 percent ahead of last year. Company promotion of diversity and equity for all employees and how companies achieve success in the areas of diversity and inclusion are the key themes that drive our magazine’s commitment and purpose. Our staff works on this issue for about six months. Many hours are devoted toward putting all the pieces and parts together to tell the story. While the challenges we all face are daunting, it’s comforting to know that you can pick up this issue at any time and be motivated and stimulated to see the great strides women are making in the world today. And now I ask you to read each essay, internalize and understand the messages these women write so eloquently about, and pass it along. Spread the message that women and education are important to your company, community, and our country. PDJ



Paul Malanij INTERNS

Raquel Harrah Julienne Hayes Ryan Keel Emily Rabatsky HUMAN RESOURCES



Profiles in Diversity Journal Gemini Towers #1 • 1991 Crocker Road, Suite 204 • Westlake, OH 44145 Tel: 440.892.0444 • Fax: 440.892.0737 SUBSCRIPTIONS

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James R. Rector, CEO, Publisher September/October 2012



September / October 2012 Volume 14 Number 5




In this year’s issue, we explore the facets and dynamics surrounding education, and how they impact women today. Accompanying an educational roundtable with three noted education experts are statistics and facts that shed a light on women and girls’ education throughout the country and world.




Almost 200 women from all industries and sectors participated in this year’s special issue. With essays focusing on education, 2013’s WomenWorthWatching winners are introduced by Catalyst President and CEO Ilene Lang. BEING






















In honor of September’s National Hispanic Heritage Month, Diversity Journal further explores issues and complexities of the nation’s fastestgrowing demographic.








68 | SHANTELLA COOPER Lockheed Martin Corporation

112 | KRISTIN HILF Raytheon Company

166 | ANA M. MIDDLETON Army and Air Force Exchange Service

170 | ERIN MOSELEY BAE Systems, Inc.



Northrop Grumman Information Systems

Legg Mason


AAI Corporation




Sandia National Laboratories

220 | LINDA SNOW-SOLUM Rockwell Collins




September/October 2012

33 | NOREEN D. BEAMAN Brinker Capital, Inc.

69 | KELLY MCNAMARA CORLEY Discover Financial Services

89 | LINDA D. FORTE Comerica Bank


continued on page 4

Citi is proud to celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month. At Citi, we recognize and value the positive impact our Hispanic employees and customers have made in our lives.

Š 2012 Citigroup Inc. Citi and Arc Design is a registered service mark of Citigroup Inc.

Inside The Issue


11TH ANNUAL WOMEN WORTH WATCHING continued from page 2



DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc.

Capital One Bank

214 | ERIN SELLECK Union Bank, N.A.

234 | CATIE TOBIN RBC Wealth Management


146 | GENA LOVETT Alcoa Foundation

187 | DIANA M. PENINGER Celanese Corporation

217 | YEDWA SIMELANE AngloGold Ashanti Limited


53 | SUZIE BROWN Valassis


228 | SONIA SROKA Porter Novelli




Elford, Inc.

DynCorp International

CBS Corporation




Terex Corporation



U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement


56 | ANGELA MARIA CAMACHO Microsoft Corp

96 | CARRIE GATES CA Technologies



Cisco Systems, Inc.



American Express



Burger King Worldwide, Inc.

University of Toronto




Sodexo, Inc.

Tulane University





Compass Group North America

Kendall College

Fannie Mae








Sprint Nextel Corporation

Comcast Corporation

City of Philadelphia Streets Department

Cornell University

GE Power & Water



MasterCard Worldwide



Univision Communications, Inc.


Coca-Cola Enterprises




U.S. Navy, Naval Air Systems Command



Harris Corporation

Level 3 Communications



Walden University



Bechtel Limited


Freddie Mac

Marsh & McLennan Companies

Motorola Mobility

23 | ILEANA ARIAS Centers for Disease Control and Prevention





Ingersoll Rand

The Walt Disney Studios Time Warner Cable



42 | EVA BORATTO CVS Caremark



145 | SAMMIE LONG Kellogg Company



65 | JAMIE CHUNG Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

138 | SUSAN S. LANIGAN Dollar General Corporation


24 | DIANE ASKWYTH Caesars Entertainment Corporation

126 | SARA KEARNEY Hyatt Hotels Corporation


48 | VIRGINIA M. BRANDT Energizer Battery Manufacturing


continued on page 6 September/October 2012


A career at Verizon means always reaching, always achieving. That’s because we foster an environment that thrives on different perspectives, which will challenge you to grow and lead. It’s how we’re able to continually bring powerful technology to businesses and individuals all over the world. And it’s just the kind of support you need to help you fulfill your potential and achieve your goals. For current career opportunities, visit us and take the lead at

Verizon is an equal opportunity employer m/f/d/v.

Inside The Issue








WellCare Health Plans, Inc.

Andrews Kurth LLP




Thompson Hine LLP






Simpson Thatcher & Bartlett LLP


Barrasso Usdin Kupperman Freeman & Sarver, L.L.C.




244 | TERRY TUTTLE HellermannTyton


Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP

Novak Druce + Quigg LLP





111 | PATRICIA M. HENRY RehabCare

113 | TIJA HILTON-PHILLIPS Highmark Inc.

131 | UMA KOTAGAL Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center

Greenberg Traurig, LLP



Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation


238 | COLLEEN TRACY Fitzpatrick, Cella, Harper & Scinto

161 | KALPANA M. MERCHANT Eli Lilly and Company



Fish & Richardson





Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP

Dickstein Shapiro




MetroPlus Health Plan

The Hartford


Best Best & Krieger LLP


Hausfeld LLP


Medical Mutual of Ohio


FordHarrison LLP


Gibbons P.C.

WellPoint, Inc.




White & Case LLP


Teach For America

Nationwide Insurance





Graphic Packaging International




Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay


O’Melveny & Myers LLP

AXA Equitable Life Insurance



Lewis and Roca LLP

New York Life



Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi LLP

Zurich Insurance Company

201 | KATE RUBIN UnitedHealth Group

222 | CHERYL SPRUILL Prudential Financial, Inc.


174 | LINDA K. MYERS Kirkland & Ellis LLP

CEVA Logistics

206 | NAMRATA SAWANT FedEx Express Pvt. Ltd.


71 | JINGRONG JEAN CUI Pfizer, Inc.




20 | SUSAN AU ALLEN US Pan Asian American Chamber of Commerce


114 | SARAH HODGDON Sierra Club

122 | WALEASE JONES Play-place for Autistic Children

167 | MARGARET A. MITCHELL YWCA Greater Cleveland

175 | IRENE NATIVIDAD Global Summit of Women

Watson Pharmaceuticals

continued on page 8



September/October 2012

Inside The Issue


11TH ANNUAL WOMEN WORTH WATCHING continued from page 6

192 | JEANINE L. PRIME Catalyst, Inc.

204 | ELISSA ELLIS SANGSTER Forté Foundation





Bridge Partners LLC


Electronic Arts


Charles Schwab

Moss Adams Wealth Advisors



NYSE Euronext

Deloitte LLP


Downtown Women’s Center




39 | LISA BLACKWOOD The Structure Group

44 | MAUREEN BORKOWSKI Ameren Transmission Company

57 | RENEE CASTILLO Salt River Project

58 | MOANICA CASTON Georgia Power


82 | GAIL EDGAR W.W. Grainger, Inc.

97 | KATHLEEN GERAGHTY National Grid

106 | HELENE HARDING ConocoPhillips

155 | LINDA MATTES Alliant Energy


The Dwyer Group ManpowerGroup



GameStop Corp.





Brightstar Corporation

Juniper Networks



K. Parks Consulting, Inc.

Imprint Plus

189 | KIM POPE



Pitney Bowes



Ernst & Young LLP




Kelly Services





Eastman Kodak Company




Ford Motor Company of Canada, Limited Toyota Motor North America, Inc.






Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate

US Airways, Inc.



Pepco Holdings, Inc.


OfficeMax Inc.




212 | DARCEE SCAVONE Ryder System, Inc.

231 | GAYLA THAL Union Pacific


36 | LORI BIRKEY True Value Company

142 | JACQUELINE LEUNG Arrow Electronics, Inc.

147 | CARYL N. LUCARELLI Tech Data Corporation

215 | WENDY SHEN FLOMO/Nygala Corp.

250 | ANGELA T. WILKES Owens & Minor, Inc.

Axis Teknologies LLC


ComEd, Exelon Corporation

The Corcoran Group



16 | ALLISON ADEN Recall Corporation


Jones Lang LaSalle

198 | TANYA REU Realogy Corporation


ADP, Inc.


September/October 2012

Thanks to You,

Women from every walk of life have improved their communities and our nation.

WellPoint congratulates all of the WomenWorthWatching®, including our own recipient, Liz Hall. WellPoint is proud of our dedication to diversity. Still, with all that we've achieved, we will always strive to better attract, retain and develop top diverse talent. One way is through Associate Resource Groups, where employees work to develop and sustain our culture of inclusion, enhance and maximize customer relations, and create and leverage leadership opportunities for all of our associates. Through these ARGs, we're able to better address our customers' needs, and ensure that our workforce is as unique as our wide range of health benefits products. At WellPoint, diversity is more than just the 'right thing to do.' It's the way we approach business, how we interact within our communities, how we mobilize our employees and, more than anything, why we appreciate moments like this. For more information, visit:

® Registered Trademark, WellPoint, Inc. © 2012 WellPoint, Inc. All Rights Reserved. EOE. ® Profiles in Diversity Journal. ® Registered Trademark, Diversity Inc Media LLC.


Paying It Forward Pays Back By Catalyst


WHAT MAKES A LEADER EFFECTIVE? Being able to take charge, make sound decisions, and get the most out of employees by inspiring them to achieve goals are essential skills. But helping others to live up to their full potential is also a crucial part of successful leadership. According to a groundbreaking new Catalyst study, supporting the development of other talented employees pays off not only for high-potential employees but for those who cultivate them as well. Contrary to popular wisdom, more women than men invest time and energy in helping others move up the career ladder. According to Leaders Pay It Forward, the latest study in a Catalyst series, The Promise of Future Leadership: Highly Talented Employees in the Pipeline, which develops timely reports on the retention and advancement of high potential women and men, high-potential talent who were themselves mentored, coached, or sponsored to advance in their careers are more likely to “pay it forward” by helping to develop the next generation of leaders. The Promise of Future Leadership report series surveys graduates of leading business schools in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Asia, with the intent of assessing their career values, goals, and expectations, the developmental opportunities afforded them, and their strategies for managing work and family life. The reports highlight the differences in women’s and men’s career experiences and satisfaction; some feature perspectives from global leaders and other experts. According to the most recent study in this series, paying it forward pays back. It benefits not only protégés themselves but often leads to career advancement and compensation growth for their mentors and sponsors as well—$25,075 in additional compensation between 2008 and 2010, for those surveyed for our report. Why is this? It could be that developing other talent generates greater visibility and a following within the organization for those doing the developing, which leads to greater recognition and reward. Far from holding them back, women leaders tend to give other talented employees a professional boost. Sixty-five percent of women who received support earlier in their careers are now developing new talent, compared to only 56 percent of men—and 73 percent of



the women developing new talent are developing other women, compared to only 30 percent of men. This finding refutes the oft-cited “Queen Bee” myth, the belief that women are reluctant to provide career support to other women and may even actively work to undermine each other. Overall, the report finds that high-potential employees who are paying it forward today recognize that others once took a chance on them, and it’s their turn to do the same for someone else. The men and women most likely to develop others have themselves received developmental support (59%), were sponsored (66%), are in senior executive/CEO level positions (64%), and are generally more proactive when it comes to their own career advancement (63%) with regard to using career advancement strategies. Given that men still hold a majority of senior positions within most organizations, and that involving men in women’s development creates men who become champions of women’s advancement, Catalyst encourages men as well as women to view developing and sponsoring female talent as essential to good leadership. The report poses several key questions for companies and leaders to consider. For instance: How is your organization creating a culture of talent development? Do you have a compelling, well-communicated business case for diversity and inclusion? What will motivate your talent to “pay it forward” to the next generation of leaders? How can more men be encouraged to develop women? How can your organization disarm stigmas about spending time with the opposite sex at work? Are you encouraging those in senior positions to “look broadly, look deeply, and look often” to find talent that may not be getting exposure and support? How do you reward senior women—and men— who make a serious effort to develop female talent? Paying it forward is an essential element of being an outstanding leader, and it benefits everyone involved. Catalyst hopes this new report will help to dispel unfair and inaccurate stereotypes of women at work and prompt businesses and leaders to consider what their organizations can do to create a workplace culture that rewards this generous and valuable behavior. PDJ Founded in 1962, Catalyst is the leading nonprofit membership organization expanding opportunities for women and business.

Making Better Possible. Through our $4 prescription plan, healthier foods initiative, more than $8 million in scholarships to the Hispanic community and employing more than 170,000 Hispanic associates nationwide, we are proud to be a part of so many families’ lives.

10 th Annual Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® in 2013

By Ilene H. Lang | President & CEO, Catalyst

Why Education is Integral for

Women's Success


S PRESIDENT AND CEO OF CATALYST, AN ORGANIZATION WITH A MISSION OF EXPANDING OPPORTUNITIES FOR WOMEN AND BUSINESS, I AM HONORED TO CONTRIBUTE AN INTRODUCTION TO PDJ’S WOMENWORTHWATCHING ISSUE—ESPECIALLY BECAUSE THIS YEAR’S THEME IS EDUCATION. Education is fundamental to women’s advancement into leadership; after all, in their thirst for talent, employers know that they cannot afford to overlook women whose stellar academic credentials suit them for leadership positions in today’s complex global marketplace. As I review the list of nearly 200 highly successful women featured in this issue, I am deeply impressed by the array of professions in which they excel, including law, nonprofit, finance, academia, industry, and technology. These talented women give us much to celebrate. I’d also like to commend Profiles in Diversity Journal for its crucial work in highlighting women’s advancement over the past fourteen years. With each WomenWorthWatching issue, the list of women and companies deserving of celebration grows, showcasing how far professional women have come. However, we must not lose sight of how much progress we have yet to make. For example, despite the fact that women in the United States and most developed countries are now outpacing men in earning bachelor’s degrees, master’s degrees, and doctorates, Catalyst research shows that as of 2011, only 14.1 percent of Executive Officers at Fortune 500 companies were women. And the gender gap is particularly notable in STEM fields: in the sciences, women represent only 21.6 percent of all managers. Why do these gaps persist, regardless of women’s educational achievements? Sadly, the answer still boils down to gender bias: many of us continue to picture men when we hear “scientist,” “programmer,” “doctor,” or “CEO,” and unfortunately this has a real—albeit often unconscious—influence on decisions about recruitment, hiring, and promotion, particularly for senior roles. One of the best ways to counter these biases—and to develop accomplished women graduates into accomplished leaders across all fields—is to showcase impressive women like those featured in this issue. Catalyst research continues to demonstrate how critical sponsors and role models are to advancement, and women establishing their careers today will benefit tremendously from these examples of women who have the achievements to inspire them, the experience to “show them the ropes” and the influence to guide them to plum assignments and promotions. While education may not be the last step in advancing women to leadership, it remains an integral first step. These “women worth watching” have clearly benefited from both educational opportunities and career opportunities, with the help of mentors and sponsors who have rewarded their talents and diligence with support and encouragement. Now let’s bring those advantages to a new generation of women leaders, and finally close the gender gap—for the benefit of women, men, families, communities, businesses, and the global economy.



September/October 2012

A job shouldn’t define you. It should reflect you.

Glenda G. International Humanitarian Volunteer Nurse Practitioner

For such a diverse group of people, it’s amazing how alike we are. Diversity and Inclusion at UnitedHealth Group. To the uninitiated, we may appear quite different. We represent a widely diverse group of cultural backgrounds, beliefs, perspectives and lifestyles. But inside each of us beats the heart of a relentlessly driven, crazy talented, mission focused professional. Our modest goals: Improve the lives of others. Change the landscape of health care forever. Leave the world a better place than we found it. So if you ever ask yourself, “Do people like me work here?” The answer is yes. We invite you to join us. Add your unique perspective and start doing your life’s best work.SM Take the next steps: Online at:

Diversity creates a healthier atmosphere: equal opportunity employer M/F/D/V. UnitedHealth Group is a drug-free workplace. Candidates are required to pass a drug test before beginning employment. © 2012 UnitedHealth Group. All rights reserved.

Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Allison Aden, Recall Corporation • Cynthia Baerman, Graphic Packaging International • Susan Au Allen, USPAACC • Chanin Ballance, VIA Jacqueline F. Akerblom, Grant Thornton LLP • Phyllis S. Anderson, Humana • Marcia J. Avedon, Ingersoll Rand • Katherine M. Basile, Novak Druce + Quigg LLP Judy Y. Barrasso, Barrasso Usdin Kupperman Freeman & Sarver, LLC • Tara Amaral, ADP, Inc. • Diane Askwyth, Caesars Entertainment Corporation • Ileana Arias, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Recall Corporation



Norcross, Georgia WEBSITE:

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? During my undergraduate work at the University of Missouri, finance professor John Stowe regularly encouraged me to take more challenging courses. I once told him I wanted to be a controller, and he responded, “No, you’re going to be a CFO.”

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Gardening allows me to retreat to a space where I can relax, decompress, and create something beautiful.


“It is critical parents and educators continue to instill a sense of boundless ACHIEVEMENT in young women.” PROFILES IN DIVERSITY JOURNAL

REVENUES: $800 million EMPLOYEES: 4,800

HEN I ENTERED COLLEGE IN THE 1980s, HIGHRANKING FEMALE EXECUTIVES WERE ABOUT AS COMMON AS FOUR-LEAF CLOVERS. However, the face of corporate America is changing, albeit slowly. Today, women are achieving bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degrees at a higher rate than men, and in areas that were once roped off to women. While the gender gap in occupational opportunity and compensation decreases, there is still much room for improvement. Ultimately, certain attitudes regarding what women can or can’t or should or shouldn’t do must still evolve. But change, as we know, doesn’t always occur at a just speed. Until relatively recently, young women were often discouraged by family, friends, and educators from seeking non-traditional educational paths like science, law, and finance. There are still some who subscribe to the dated views of gender-based abilities, but much of the stigma associated with educational interests for women has been chipped away, both socially and institutionally. Can you imagine a college counselor in 2012 telling a female student not to pursue a degree in finance because “that’s not an area at which women are proficient”? It is now imperative that this accepted erosion of gender bias more deeply penetrates the mindset of corporate decision makers. In the meantime, it is critical that parents and educators continue to instill a sense of boundless achievement in young women. The path they take may be different than their male counterparts, but it can be navigated with education. At each level, education adds layer upon layer of occupational and life lessons. Furthermore, the breadth and depth of that education will determine their readiness to face the myriad of obstacles encountered along the way. And while it may seem obvious, it is worth stating: The more education a woman attains, the higher she will climb in her occupation of choice, and empower her to more seamlessly transition into another field if she chooses. All things are not yet equal, but education can assist in balancing the scale for women who desire to achieve in areas formerly reserved only for men. With the facilitation of an “anything’s possible” environment, women can continue to soar to new educational and occupational heights, leaving outdated attitudes in the past. No four-leaf clover necessary.



Document management, data protection and document destruction

September/October 2012


Chief Financial Officer EDUCATION: BSBA, University

of Missouri-Columbia; MBA, University of Missouri-St. Louis; Certified Public Accountant FIRST JOB:

Accountant/Auditor, Boeing Corporation MY PHILOSOPHY: The level

of honesty, integrity, and dedication I expect from my team is no greater than I expect from myself.

MAKE AN IMPACT WITH A CAREER AT SHELL. LET’S BUILD A BETTER ENERGY FUTURE. At Shell we believe that every individual has something valuable to offer. We understand that the more diverse the workforce, the wider the variety of ideas we bring to the table. If you’re ready to tackle the energy challenge and make a real impact on the world, join a company that values diversity and emphasizes the quality of life for its employees and their families. At Shell, we offer: n

Alternative Work Schedules


Health and Wellness Programs


Work and Family Programs n

Employee Networks/Mentoring

To learn more and apply, visit

BE PART oF THE SoLUTIoN. @ShellCareers

Shell is an equal opportunity employer.



Training and Development

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Jacqueline F.

Grant Thornton LLP



N MY CAREER, I HAVE BEEN FORTUNATE IN THAT I HAVE NEVER FELT THAT I HAVE LAGGED IN MY ABILITY TO ADVANCE. Over nearly 30 years, each time I felt I had achieved a new career milestone, I was presented with increasing opportunities. I don’t mean to imply that it has been easy; on the contrary, there were many days I felt that the uphill battle was one that could never be won. My personal life experience includes a great education, combined with parenting that helped me believe I could achieve my goals with perseverance and hard work. I combined this with my own personal drive to succeed, which has led me to where I am today. However, as a woman and mother, I know I have had to make more choices and trade-offs than my male counterparts, and the lack of female role models made my leadership vision unclear as I progressed in my career. Despite my own hard-won successes, I know that women are seriously underrepresented in executive leadership positions, board representation, and on the high end of the salary scale in corporate America; it is worth looking deeper to try to understand the reasons behind this. Statistics show that today more women than men earn undergraduate and graduate degrees at our universities. Additionally, studies show that men and women coming out of our universities have similar career aspirations and are presented with similar advancement strategies early in their careers—so why the big gender gap in the C-suite? In my experience, educated women are more likely to put their career goals on hold in order to follow their desire for personal life aspirations. When this occurs, women who have the economic option to step out of their careers often do. It is a personal sacrifice; I know many highly-educated women who have taken this path because they felt they had no other option and they often dream of the career that might have been. I believe that the organization that can adeptly provide flexibility within the corporate framework, works to eliminate gender-based stereotypes, provides a wide range of diverse role models, and has leaders who believe that more diversity of thought will produce better, more innovative solutions, is the organization that wins. When asked for advice from younger women, I always remind them that their career is long and that they shouldn’t be in a rush to do everything before they are 30. Continually readjust your priorities and ask for what you want—you’ll be amazed at how often you can get what you ask for—and how the opportunities you never would have considered could be the best thing for you.



September/October 2012

› What advice would you give younger women about their education? Young women should take the opportunity to get as much education as possible and when they seek their first employer, look for one who provides an environment that will allow them the flexibility and opportunity to grow in their career. › How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? The key for me is communication with my entire personal/ professional ecosystem— my husband, son, clients, and colleagues. Strong communications allows me to manage everyone’s expectations and more effectively balance the needs of all, including myself.


Chicago, Illinois WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Accounting, tax, and advisory services firm REVENUES: $1.15 billion EMPLOYEES: 5,298 TITLE:

Managing Partner, Southern California Practice; member of the Grant Thornton LLP Partnership Board EDUCATION: BBA, the

University of San Diego FIRST JOB:

McDonald’s crew member MY PHILOSOPHY:

Careers are long; take time to enjoy the journey. FAMILY:

Wonderful parents; an amazing husband, Robert; and a very special son, William

Reason says: applaud the achievement.

Instinct says: admire the effort.

Behind every great achievement lies talent, dedication and inspiring perseverance. On behalf of all Grant Thornton professionals, we are proud to salute Jacqueline Akerblom who is being recognized as a Woman to Watch. To see how we help unlock the potential for growth for businesses and organizations here at home and around the world, visit

Grant Thornton refers to Grant Thornton LLP, the U.S. member firm of Grant Thornton International Ltd.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Susan Au

US Pan Asian American Chamber of Commerce Education Foundation


“America opened new doors of OPPORTUNITIES for me. Education was my ticket to success.”


GREW UP IN COLONIAL HONG KONG AS A THIRD-CLASS CITIZEN, BELOW THE MIDDLE STRATUM OF GOVERNMENT ADMINISTRATORS AND MERCHANTS, AND THE ELITE BRITISH COLONISTS ON TOP. We pledged allegiance to the Queen of England. The world was like the sky the little frog saw at the bottom of the well—blue, beautiful, and wide—as wide as the opening of the well. My family did not have enough money to send me to college. I yearned for higher education and was devastated. I volunteered at the local Caritas Center to help the homeless, ex-drug addicts, and society’s untouchables. Then, at an international convention, American delegates from the White House and the United Nations noticed my work attitude; they were impressed and invited me to visit America. The little frog finally jumped out from the bottom of the well, HEADQUARTERS: saw and marveled at the sky’s Washington, D.C. expanse. America opened new WEBSITE: doors of ties for me. I studBUSINESS: ied hard, became Nonprofit a lawyer, argued against Assistant U.S. EMPLOYEES: 10 and contractors Attorneys, and won

precedential cases under immigration and nationality law. The year I got my first law degree, I helped to found the US Pan Asian American Chamber of Commerce Education Foundation (USPAACC) to educate and give a unified, clarion voice for the community, level the playing field, and create opportunities in the mainstream. Through this, I see the inequities that women in business experience—from the entrepreneurial trenches to corporate boardrooms—as they struggle to reach the summit of success. When very few women break the glass ceiling, I believe it is for the lack of support and opportunities, not the lack of talent. If we are to remain competitive in the global marketplace where at least half of the consumer purchasing decisions are made by women, we need more women in the board room. Make mentorship the cornerstone of every company. Create a pipeline of women leaders. Promote executive sponsorship from the top. Women at the top should not be afraid to welcome other women into the fold, whatever age they may be. Let us support and celebrate advancement of other women to inspire success. This little frog’s journey has made me a better daughter, wife, mother, and citizen. Before, the signposts to success were hidden from me. Today, through education and working together, women could achieve parity in the workplace with the best and brightest the corporate world has to offer.


USPAACC National President & CEO EDUCATION:

JD, Antioch School of Law; LLM, Georgetown University Law Center FIRST JOB:

Data entry clerk at Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank MY PHILOSOPHY:

Draw your own map, clear the path, enjoy the journey as you build your dream. FAMILY:

Married with two sons


What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Communications, including good writing and public speaking skills, and the ability to handle the media; world history; political systems; finance and economics; and philosophy and logic

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? Family is my top priority because I want to have both family and career. I share my paycheck with a good housekeeper. That keeps my family together, gives me peace of mind to concentrate on my work, and the ability to spend quality time with my family.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? A poet once wrote: “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” My grandfather used to tell me: “Through books, you will find your house built of gold.”


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner



Roseland, New Jersey WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Business outsourcing services REVENUES:

$10 billion EMPLOYEES:

54,000 TITLE:

Chief Diversity Officer EDUCATION:

BA, Brown University FIRST JOB:

Fundraising Coordinator, WNET, Channel 13 MY PHILOSOPHY:

Love what you do. Be passionate. Have an opinion. FAMILY:

Three children

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Having grown up with two brothers where we were all treated the same, I was naïve entering the workforce, assuming everyone got an equal chance with advancement. I pay attention to the gap.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Gain experience and mentors early on. Take risks.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Prof. Barrett Hazeltine. He is passionate in everything he does, and challenged me to think outside the box.

ADP, Inc.



AM SOMETIMES ASKED IF I BELIEVE THERE IS A GAP BETWEEN WOMEN’S POTENTIAL AND THEIR PROFESSIONAL ADVANCEMENT. Unfortunately, I have to say yes. Women have the edge in terms of formal education—more degrees of all kinds are earned by women than by men. Yet we continue to see wage and leadership disparity in favor of men in many industries. Formal education is only the first step on the road to leadership success. Educational institutions are places we learn to think, make mistakes, and step outside our comfort zones. After leaving those institutions and moving into the workforce, women need to keep their skills honed and their eyes open for opportunities. In any discipline change, it’s vital that technical and soft skills are fresh and current when advancing in the workplace. Three very solid ways of keeping abreast of industry trends and changes are reading as much as possible about areas of expertise or interest, working with a mentor, and plain old networking. It’s also important for women to be comfortable and assertive about taking on stretch assignments as a way to learn about other functions or areas of the business. Networking and mentoring are significant, especially for young women entering the workforce and women who are returning after considerable leaves. Mentoring not only greatly benefits the employee but also the mentor. It’s a way for leaders to pay it forward and sponsor future female executives. It’s also important for women in junior leadership roles to take volunteer opportunities in the workplace, such as serving on a committee or organizing a project with a local nonprofit. These might be viewed as low-risk projects, but they are definitely observed by senior leaders. My point is that many opportunities we don’t think count actually do translate to leadership skills in the workplace. I see women—especially those who have achieved degrees and are recently returning to the workforce after being a full-time parent—downplaying the skills they’ve learned outside of a professional environment. I tell them that it’s critical to emphasize skills such as consensus building, organization, time management, scheduling, and working in highly-charged political environments or on committees because they are all relevant, transferable skills. Something I’ve witnessed throughout my career is that so many women simply won’t apply for a job or change jobs unless they feel fully qualified for the role. Men apply for a job because they want it, whether they believe they’re fully qualified or not. The bottom line is that we can address the wage and advancement disparity by helping women gain more self-confidence in addition to focusing on their education. It’s up to us as mentors to encourage, support, and help advance future women leaders. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Phyllis S.

Louisville, Kentucky WEBSITE:


Anderson “The benefits of continuous learning simply can’t be measured—it’s PRICELESS.”


Health insurance REVENUES: $36 billion EMPLOYEES: 40,000



Vice President, Marketing EDUCATION:

BS, Spelman College; MBA, Clark Atlanta University Graduate School of Business Administration FIRST JOB:

Worked in the recreation department making picnic table reservations and answering the phone MY PHILOSOPHY:

I’m in this place “for such a time as this.” FAMILY:

Husband and two children

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? For aspiring leaders, developing strong leadership competencies and building credibility are important skills to master. I recommend psychology, human behavior courses as well as courses on organizational behavior, because the marketplace is in constant flux. Courses on “building teams” could prove very beneficial because little today is accomplished alone. Other courses to consider include a speech class and a writing class that will develop communication and presentation skills. Learning another language is beneficial as tomorrow’s leaders will be global ones. Consider a semester or a year abroad to understand and appreciate another culture.


IEW YOUR LIFE AS A CONTINUOUS JOURNEY FOR KNOWLEDGE, A CONSTANT PURSUIT FOR LEARNING THAT WILL WIDEN YOUR HORIZONS WHETHER YOU’RE IN THE CLASSROOM, AT WORK, OR GAINING EXPERIENCES ELSEWHERE. The benefits of continuous learning simply can’t be measured—it’s priceless. Continuous learning opens our minds to all the possibilities that can emerge. These possibilities grow more vital over time as we become a more global society—as major demographic shifts occur, especially among baby boomers, health and well-being grows in importance, and we recognize the importance of stewardship of our natural resources. The workplace will prove so different in the years and decades ahead. There will be opportunities for careers that don’t even exist today. Simply consider that today’s 22-year-olds were born when there was no digital technology to speak of, or debit cards, or hybrid cars, or even lettuce in a bag. Those innovations triggered many new careers that touch technology and access to information. Merely consider how the smartphone has changed our communications landscape. Futurist Thomas Frey recently envisioned 55 future jobs that don’t exist now, including avatar designers and specialists in social education (think Twitter). While formal education today, perhaps, can’t completely train people for such jobs, continuous learning can help introduce these exciting new avenues in the future to today’s young adults and those choosing new career paths. This holds true in the health field as well. At Humana, we expect many new healthrelated occupations to emerge that don’t exist now, such as service providers for centenarians as that cohort grows in number. Again, continuous learning will prepare today’s generation and future ones to hone and maximize their skills, to identify trends and needs, to consider the new avenues that will emerge, and to think outside the box. For many people, it will prompt them to become an entrepreneur rather than pursue a corporate career. I consider it essential to view your life as a continuous learning experience. The knowledge and insights you gain can trigger new and exciting opportunities.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


“Many people aren’t aware of the large disparity in education of WOMEN across the world, and more importantly, how the gap ultimately can affect them.”


DUCATION IS EMPOWERMENT. I believe that girls and women want and should be able to exert as much control over their destinies as possible and the path to that is education. People think of education only as skills building and that it can lead to bigger jobs and earning more money, but it’s much more than that. Education gives you the tools to think, react to situations, put information together, and allows you to make the best possible decisions. The ability to question and discover is liberating; it helps us to find concrete freedoms and control that translate into a higher quality of life. My education started in the home—both my mother and father reminded me that education is important because it can’t be taken away from you. They said, “you can lose money, land, or other goods, but not your education”—and they were right. The lack of education for women and girls in certain areas of the developing world is a serious concern. This lack, which can be attributed, in part, to economic and public health challenges, increases the risk of abuse and disease among girls. Access to education leads to healthier women who have healthier children with longer survival rates and girls who are more informed and able to fully participate in their communities. Many people aren’t aware of the large disparity in education of women across the world, and more importantly, how the gap ultimately can affect them. In my position, I am keenly aware of the need of addressing critical public health issues, and the resulting return on those public health investments. CDC focuses on the eradication of diseases in other countries because it is the right thing to do and because of the significant impact on our country. Due to the rapid technological advances made, people throughout the world are more connected and countries are more interconnected. The world has become more of a global community with fewer boundaries. This is why the CDC is committed to training all people, including women, on public health issues. We want to empower others to detect, discover, and respond to the health challenges in their communities. I am privileged to be a part of an agency that seeks to educate people globally, including women, by providing availability and access to what we know, and inviting them to take us beyond that current knowledge. September/October 2012

How has your education affected your career? My education started at home—where I was encouraged to stay engaged in and seek out formal higher education. Formally, it helped me be a creative thinker—and as a result of education, I’ve been able to recognize what I find enjoyable and be prepared to take risks professionally.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Use the relationships with your mentors as resources—find out why they made certain decisions and try to learn about their successes and failures. Also, take charge. You can’t wait for mentors and teachers to tell you what you need; of course, seek their guidance, but ultimately you have to create your own path and decide where you’ll go.


Atlanta, Georgia WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Federal government EMPLOYEES: 15,000 TITLE: Principal Deputy Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) EDUCATION:

BA, Barnard College; MA, PhD, State University of New York at Stony Brook FIRST JOB: Bakery at

Woolworth’s in New York MY PHILOSOPHY: Each person

is in charge of his or her own destiny in education. We can’t wait for people to act or tell us what to do. FAMILY:

Married with two sons and the eldest of two sisters



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Caesars Entertainment Corporation



TEM IS AN ACRONYM FOR THE FIELDS OF STUDY IN THE CATEGORIES OF SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, ENGINEERING, AND MATHEMATICS. Why is STEM important? STEM education creates critical thinkers, increases science literacy, and enables the next generation of innovators. Tomorrow’s graduate will compete in an emerging global economy fueled by rapid innovation and marked by an astonishing pace of technological breakthroughs. Sadly, the U.S. may be known around the world for its higher education, but compared to many other leading and emerging countries, it lacks a strong focus on STEM. U.S. achievement in math and science is lagging behind students in much of Asia and Europe. Recalling my elementary, middle and high school years in the Newark, New Jersey school system, girls were treated as second-class citizens when it came to STEM classes. Subtly, we were led to believe girls weren’t as smart as the boys in math and science. It appears not much has changed in 50 years. The U.S. Department of Labor projects that by 2018 the U.S. will have more than 2.7 million job openings in STEM fields, yet there will be a significant shortage of qualified college graduates to fill these careers. How can we better inspire students and create longer lasting career interest in the area of STEM? This is a complex conundrum with a long list of possible solutions, but it seems to me that the following actions should be near the top of the list: • Expose and prepare students to STEM fields from a young age, as early as elementary school • Design and execute coordinated strategies to reach out specifically to girls starting in elementary school, with the aim of getting them into STEM studies and careers • Revamp school curricula to make math and science education more approachable and less intimidating • Recruit, train, and support highly-effective teachers in STEM subjects and provide robust tools to support their efforts • Involve industry, the public sector, and educational institutions to implement an integrated approach that increases the number and quality of U.S. STEM graduates entering the workforce Charles Vest, former president of MIT, has warned, “America faces many challenges . . . but the enemy I fear most is complacency.” I echo this sentiment, and encourage everyone to rise up and demand an end to this continuing slide into mediocrity in our educational systems. This requires us to play an active role in school reform. Let’s do it!

How has your education affected your career? To the surprise of my family, I went back to school in my 40s to get an MBA. It was a tough burden on everyone, but Fortune 500 risk management jobs required an MBA, and that’s where I wanted to land. With my MBA in hand, exciting job opportunities opened up for me, including this one. The MBA experience taught me how to communicate across diverse disciplines, appreciate cultural differences, and, most importantly, relate to and speak the language of finance.



September/October 2012


Las Vegas, Nevada WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Hotel/gaming REVENUES: $8 billion EMPLOYEES: 70,000 TITLE:

Vice President, Risk & Insurance EDUCATION:

MBA, Pace University FIRST JOB:

I landed my first job through a work-study program in high school. MY PHILOSOPHY:

Don’t wait for life to deliver opportunities to you on a silver platter. Forge your own path. Do what you love and love what you do. FAMILY:

Married 22 years with two children

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Marcia J.

Ingersoll Rand



Y INTERESTS IN THE ADVANCEMENT OF WOMEN IN LEADERSHIP SPAN ALMOST 30 YEARS. Early in my career, as a consultant with Booz Allen Hamilton, we analyzed the issue of “comparable worth” and “pay equity” to understand the pay disparity between predominantly female occupations from predominantly male occupations. The results were clear—the more female the occupation, the lower the wages. Objective factors alone, like education and experience, did not explain the pay inequities. Instead, other subtle societal assumptions, stereotypes, and biases were in effect. In the 1980s and ‘90s I explored the issues of disparate impact in the promotion and selection rates of women versus men. Again, while there were typically few overt acts of discrimination, the statistics often favored men in the selection ratios of successful candidates to those in the available pool. One interpretation was that the decision makers were more male themselves, so they were more comfortable with someone “like themselves,” particularly when qualifications (such as education) were similar. Although the gender wage gap has become smaller, it still exists today. Representation of females in the highest paying leadership positions (C-suite jobs, boards, or government officials) is still low. Some may argue that women do not aspire to these levels as much as men or they claim women do not have equivalent experience yet for the ratios to catch up. I believe there are societal and organizational influences that discourage women from aspiring to the highest levels of leadership. Many women remain unclear whether they can have a healthy family life and a significant career. In many parts of the world the infrastructure (daycare, hours for food shopping, etc.) are such that it is difficult to manage both. Some male spouses are not comfortable with a wife in a top leadership position or the sacrifices that are required. So, while degrees held by women have reached parity, educational attainment is not sufficient to allow women to advance and be successful both at work and at home. There are some organizations that have made progress in the advancement of women, but it takes cultural change. This type of systemic change requires leadership support, training, progressive policies, mentoring and rewards over time. Organizations with sophisticated and sustained diversity and inclusion programs have seen progress in advancement of women. These companies also benefit from a greater pool of talent to achieve their goals and stronger reputations.

BUSINESS: Industrial

Swords, Ireland WEBSITE:


REVENUES: $14 billion EMPLOYEES: 48,000 TITLE:

Senior Vice President, Human Resources and Communications EDUCATION:

BA, University of North Carolina – Wilmington; MA, PhD, George Washington University FIRST JOB: Camp counselor MY PHILOSOPHY:

Don’t sweat the small stuff. FAMILY:

Married 25 years to Charlie Farrar; two children, Monica Farrar Miller and Alden Farrar; son-in-law Garret Miller

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Leadership, functional expertise (HR/communications/public affairs), global business acumen ›

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? I have not experienced blatant discrimination but believe that I, and women, experience stereotypes or “micro-inequities.” Attributes viewed positively for men are often viewed negatively for women (exerting power, strong opinions). I handle this by building trusting relationships and monitoring behavior.

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Prioritizing what is important at work and home. Asking for help. Having a supportive spouse. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Graphic Packaging International

Baerman “We should ENCOURAGE and inspire more of our best and brightest students.”

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Great listening skills, flexibility, intuition, and hard work ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My father, who was an educator. My father was a history scholar, and he encouraged me to learn from other people’s successes as well as their failures.

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Extreme organization, everything goes on the calendar


Marietta, Georgia WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Folding cartons, unbleached paperboard, coated recycle board, flexible packaging, and machinery REVENUES: $4.21 billion EMPLOYEES: 15,000 TITLE: Senior Vice President, Human Resources EDUCATION: Purdue University FIRST JOB:

Production Supervisor, TWR MY PHILOSOPHY: I strongly

believe most people show up at work every morning with the intentions to do their best. A manager’s job is to remove barriers so that highperformance can take place. FAMILY: Married to Chris,

with two children, Christine and Cameron



RECALL MY HIGH SCHOOL EXPERIENCE OF BEING THE ONLY FEMALE IN A TRIGONOMETRY CLASS. It is still striking to me because I can remember often being singled out because there was a perception that I was not supposed to be in a higher level math class. In fact, one day my trigonometry teacher required me to solve a number of problems up at the board because I wore a dress to school that day. That is one reason why I have such a passion around supporting STEM. We should encourage and inspire more of our best and brightest students—especially those from underrepresented or disadvantaged groups—to study in STEM fields because of the limitless opportunities associated with this area of study. As a matter of fact, studies have shown that entry-level technology and engineering programs often provide the bridge between math and science that ultimately encourage students to pursue not only advanced studies in STEM fields, but also STEM careers. As Freeman Hrabowski III, President of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, states: “It's well-documented that the United States needs a strong science and technology work force to maintain global leadership and competitiveness. The minds and talents of underrepresented minorities are a great, untapped resource that the nation can no longer afford to squander. Improving STEM education of our diverse citizenry will strengthen the science and engineering work force and boost the U.S. economy.” It is with this passion that Graphic Packaging International has accelerated work encouraging students to study in STEM fields. In addition to the work at the college level sponsoring engineering interns and providing scholarships to engineering students, we have expanded our efforts to include STEM mentoring programs with the Atlanta Public Schools System and the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta. STEM is now, and will increasingly be, the universal languages of the global marketplace. I strongly believe if we are to keep up with our global competitors, we must significantly increase our investments in STEM education.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner



Portland, Oregon WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Global business

communications and education EMPLOYEES: 65 TITLE: Founder and CEO EDUCATION:

BS, Marylhurst College; Portland State University; Stanford Graduate School of Business FIRST JOB: Sold newspaper

subscriptions door-to-door MY PHILOSOPHY: It’s impor-

tant to develop the core skills and competencies of your people and empower them to make decisions; I truly believe that success in life is determined not by what happens to us, but by what we make happen. FAMILY: Husband, two boys,

and our dog

How has your education affected your career? My education has given me the confidence to learn anything. My science education taught me discipline and endurance for learning complex subjects quickly.

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Whatever strikes their passion, but find ways to apply what they learn outside of the classroom.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I don’t strive for balance—they are intertwined. Some days work gets a little more, some days my lifestyle/home gets a little more.




LTHOUGH WOMEN FILL CLOSE TO HALF OF ALL JOBS IN THE U.S. ECONOMY, THEY HOLD LESS THAN 25 PERCENT OF STEM JOBS. This has been the case throughout the past decade, even as college-educated women have increased their share of the overall workforce. Because STEM has been male dominated for so many years, it can be intimidating and challenging to live in that culture. However, there are many possible factors contributing to the discrepancy of women in STEM jobs, including gender stereotyping, a lack of female role models, and less family-friendly flexibility in the STEM fields. I would argue the largest contributor to the discrepancy is still early gender stereotyping. Gender stereotypes are unwittingly passed down from generation to generation. For example, well-meaning parents and family members often conclude at a very early age that their child is good at math, or not. They may self-reference and assume that if they were not good at science or math, then their child won’t be either. Many parents still hold the outdated belief that boys are wired to be better at science and math than girls, despite studies and numerous examples that prove otherwise. This early judgment persists and influences the child’s self-perception and behavior over time. Messages about what is appropriate based on gender are so strong that even when children are exposed to different attitudes and experiences, they will revert to stereotyped choices. As the government supports various initiatives to foster passion among students, I believe special care should be taken to educate parents as early as preschool and kindergarten to the capabilities of girls, debunking old myths and giving parents tools and tips to help encourage, motivate, and support girls. Parental education should continue throughout the K-12 experience with recognition and celebration of female role models, including historic pioneers such as Marie Curie and Amelia Earhart, to modernday heroes such as Red Burns, Susan Helms, and Antonia Coello Novello. And parents and students alike should be educated to the growing demand for STEM jobs in the U.S., types of careers and incomes possible, as well as facts that women with STEM jobs earned 33 percent more than comparable women in nonSTEM jobs. Although there is not an easy or simple solution to the gender gap within the STEM program, and much is arguably being done already to address gender gaps and differences, earlier parental and family education is key. And, for those entering college, if you’re interested in STEM, this is a field you can be very successful in. For me, as an entrepreneur, it’s important that other women who are in STEM see that they can run a company. There are hurdles and challenges, but more than anything there is opportunity. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Judy Y.

Barrasso Usdin Kupperman Freeman & Sarver, LLC



S A SENIOR MEMBER OF A LAW FIRM AND A MEMBER OF THE TULANE LAW SCHOOL DEAN'S COUNCIL, I HAVE BECOME INCREASINGLY CONCERNED WITH THE RAPIDLY RISING COST OF A COLLEGE OR GRADUATE DEGREE. Far too often, a law school student graduates with over $150,000 of debt and a 50 percent or less chance of landing a paying job, much less one that comes with a salary sufficient to timely repay the debt. These justifiably embittered and soon to be insolvent graduates are quick to devalue their law school education and blame the law school for facilitating their situation. Like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, they believe they have been led down a yellow brick road, assured of fulfilling a dream only to have the dream shattered upon reaching the road's end. While I empathize with the graduate’s plight, I do not subscribe to the belief that a law school or other degree has lost its value. How else can one achieve the right to enter into hallowed and critical professions like law or medicine that are necessary to the survival of our democratic way of life? A high school degree HEADQUARTERS: New Orleans, Louisiana cannot afford that opportunity. Nevertheless, we must work to protect the value of these degrees and ensure that young WEBSITE: students will continue to aspire to enter these professions. We can do this by better trolling the costs of a higher education and the amount of debt that students BUSINESS: Law firm accumulate in getting their degrees. Other countries accomplish this by providing more financial assistance via scholarships to students in return for the promise to EMPLOYEES: 62 perform a year or two of community service. They also have fewer graduate schools, which means the job market is less flooded with applicants, thereby increasing the TITLE: Founding member demand and likely increasing the compensation. More schools here, especially those EDUCATION: with substantial endowments, similarly could provide more true financial assistance in BA, California State return for a community service obligation. In addition, as has happened in the housing University, Fullerton; MS, University of Tennessee; area, lending institutions must resist the urge to make loans to college and graduate JD, Tulane University students, thereby saddling them with debts they cannot repay. Finally, organizations like the American Bar Association, which accredit law schools, should resist the urge to FIRST JOB: encourage continued growth in the number of law schools and law students, especially My first professional job was as an investigator/ marginal law schools that offer the hollow promise of a substantial income. The prolifsocial worker for the eration of such schools is a disservice. Memphis Public Defender’s Office.


perfection in your work product and other efforts. FAMILY: My husband of 29

years, Brent Barriere, and my two daughters, Jennifer and Ashley


› What does it take to succeed in your position? Hard work, lots of preparation on cases, and competent support staff › Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? I was lucky enough to have a senior partner as a mentor who was color, age and gender blind at a time when others were not. As a result, I was not affected by discrimination. › How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I was fortunate to have a husband who valued my career as much as his. We truly shared the responsibilities for our children and home.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Katherine M. ›

What does it take to succeed in your position? Confidence, determination, and treating everyone as an equal

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Law Professor Gideon Kanner, who stressed happiness as an acceptable goal

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? By knowing that life requires compromise, that the balance won’t be perfect, and through a true partnership with my husband



Law firm REVENUES:

$36 million EMPLOYEES: 139 TITLE:


BS, BA, University of California, Irvine; JD, UCLA School of Law FIRST JOB:

House cleaning MY PHILOSOPHY:

Don’t rise to the bait. FAMILY:

My husband; three daughters and one son; four high school exchange students; many au pairs

Novak Druce + Quigg LLP

Basile “

Young women considering careers need to see both exceptional (inspirational) and attainable examples of SUCCESS.”


OR A PROFESSION TO REPLICATE ITSELF, THERE MUST BE A NORM. When men consider a career in science today, they see a profession full of men. That is the norm. Despite the great strides of the women’s movement, today there are so few women in STEM that when a young women considers a STEM field for a career she sees only exceptions, and usually outstanding ones who are setting a very high bar. While these exceptional role models are necessary they are not sufficient. Young women considering careers need to see both exceptional (inspirational) and attainable examples of success. Without both forms of role models, young women are turning away from careers in science and technology despite the many programs and initiatives encouraging those careers. When I look around, I find myself surrounded at times by women working in science and girls studying science. I can safely say that some of my best friends are women scientists. But they are the exception (and usually exceptional). One friend’s daughter just won a prestigious Intel Science Fair award and one of my own daughters is studying for her bachelor’s degree in physics. But they are exceptions. There is a good chance that my friend’s daughter may leave science. There is a good chance that my daughter may leave physics. Why? They don’t see where they fit or where these professions will take them. We need to help these young women stay in science so that we will create a world where professional women scientists are the norm rather than the exception. To do this, we must move beyond educational campaigns and encouragement. It is not enough to get out the message. We must also demonstrate that a science and technology career awaits these young women. To do this, today’s men and women professional scientists must actively reach out to young female students. They must leave their offices and go to the universities in person and talk to students. Their companies must create large numbers of stipend-supported internships with organized programs so that women students can see the career opportunities in science and experience the work first-hand. Today’s young women will realize that there is a place for them as science and technology professionals. They will become tomorrow’s role models. We will no longer ask, Where are the women? The women will be there. September/October 2012



Beth Bombara, 2013 Woman Worth Watching

HERE’S TO WOMEN WHO INSPIRE GREATNESS IN US ALL. We’re thrilled to celebrate this year’s group of Women Worth Watching – including The Hartford’s Beth Bombara. It’s been our honor to watch her grow into a talented leader who inspires others to thrive. We value her perspective – and the thousands of others – that make our company stronger. Contribute your unique perspective at

“The Hartford” is The Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. and all of its subsidiaries. © 2012 The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc., Hartford, CT 06155. All rights reserved.

Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Eva Boratto, CVS Caremark • Elisa Villanueva Beard, Teach For America • Cynthia G. Baum, Walden University • Lisa Blackwood, The Structure Group Maureen Borkowski, Ameren Transmission Company • Suzanne Boda, US Airways, Inc. • Stephanie Beran, Legg Mason Elizabeth Blackwell, Thompson Coburn LLP • Beth Bombara, The Hartford • Lori Birkey, True Value Company • Noreen D. Beaman, Brinker Capital, Inc.




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Cynthia G. ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Dr. Dene Berman, my undergraduate psychology honors supervisor, encouraged me, reinforced that I could “do it,” and helped me to problem solve.

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Not significantly. I have experienced tokenism (being asked to serve as “the voice of the women” for initiatives, which distracted from my primary responsibilities) but have learned to say no and stay focused.


Minneapolis, Minnesota WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Higher education EMPLOYEES:

2,700 TITLE:

President EDUCATION:

BS, Denison University; MS, PhD, University of Georgia FIRST JOB:

Ice cream sundae maker MY PHILOSOPHY:

Life is a juggle. Don’t drop the glass balls. (You can get the rubber ones on the bounce.) FAMILY:

Husband and a daughter


Walden University


“Education is absolutely necessary for professional

SUCCESS; however, education alone is not enough.”


VER THE PAST DECADE, THE NUMBER OF MASTER’S AND DOCTORAL DEGREES EARNED BY FEMALES HAS RISEN DRAMATICALLY. In fact, women earned the majority of all degrees in 2008–2009. Yet their success in higher education classrooms has not necessarily translated into advancement in the workplace. While the glass ceiling has cracked, there is much work to be done for women to truly break through and assume a proportionate number of executive leadership positions. Education is absolutely necessary for professional success; however, education alone is not enough. Organizational and attitudinal changes must also occur so women can rise as leaders of tomorrow. The lack of women at the top perpetuates the current status. Women are less likely to have sponsors to speak on their behalf and are less likely to speak on behalf of themselves. While organizations can set up—and even require—formal mentoring, talent development, and succession planning programs, women also need to seek out mentors, apply for next-level jobs, own their accomplishments, and position themselves for manager positions. Despite the increasing involvement of men in their homes and families, women are still more likely to juggle multiple roles, shifting their priorities between family and career. As a parent myself and a caretaker for my mother for many years, I know firsthand how difficult it is to balance these family commitments and maintain a career. Women take leaves of absence or follow a slower career track for longer periods of time more often than men. These career interruptions—whether they are choices or obligations—may impede the professional advancement of women. Mine was the generation that was told we can do anything—and we can—but not all at the same time or by ourselves. Organizations can help facilitate work/life balance by providing options such as flex hours and shared jobs and by supporting employees who take time off to deal with life issues. As more companies recognize this growing pool of talent, the advancement of women will become more imperative. This generation is demanding a different approach to their work and family lives. When more women can answer with a resounding yes to “Have you reached your career goals and are you happy with your life?” that, in my mind, is progress and the true definition of success.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Noreen D.

Brinker Capital, Inc.



Berwyn, Pennsylvania WEBSITE:



HEN I STARTED IN THE INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT BUSINESS, IT WAS NOT UNCOMMON TO BE THE ONLY WOMAN AT A CONFERENCE OR MEETING. Academically speaking, many of the women with whom I interacted were just as qualified as the men who occupied the majority of senior positions. Fast forward to 2012, and I now see increasing numbers of women holding senior positions in financial service and other organizations, as well as many women are enrolling in what was the academic bastion of men—engineering, accounting, business, and finance. While academic progress is being made, equal pay for equal work is still a problem. It is up to senior leadership to hold on to the talent emerging from our educational institutions. True leaders should want the brightest minds in their organization regardless of gender. I come from a family of trendsetting women. My aunt went to law school with Geraldine Ferraro and my mother was an elementary school teacher who instilled in me a love of lifelong learning. My parents raised me to believe that gender was not a barrier to achieving my goals. My father told me that I could be anything I wanted to be provided that my ambition was solidly grounded in education from a respected school. I have encountered biases and discrimination, but it has only inspired me to work harder. As a mother and a professional, I have learned how best to make work and home fit. Author Cali Yost coined the phrase “Work+Life Fit,” and it is a principle that I subscribe to. It is about finding the right fit for you. There are trade-offs, but I do my best to be at the critical company events as well as events my children consider most important to them. Along with my other partners, we have built a company that embraces family. Positions in the company, and the compensation that goes with them, are dictated by the level of responsibility, not the gender of the person holding that position. While no system is perfect, it is incumbent upon senior leadership to continue to push for diversity, fairness, and intellectual rigor in the workplace. In the long run, our lives are shaped by the choices we make—personal, professional, and academic. The best advice I can give a young woman today is to stop focusing on the glass ceiling. Get the best education you can afford, and let the focus be on you. Find your passion, work hard at it, own it, and I assure you the rest will fall into place. September/October 2012

Investment management REVENUES:

$12 billion EMPLOYEES:

130 TITLE:

Chief Executive Officer EDUCATION:

BS, St. Peter’s College FIRST JOB:

Ernst and Young Staff Auditor MY PHILOSOPHY:

Education is the key to any future and it should be a lifelong process. FAMILY:

Husband; two daughters and son

What does it take to succeed in your position? Strong listening skills, team building, and hard work. It is important to approach things with a level head, and to always remember that your team is counting on your leadership.

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Fortunately, I work at a firm where contributions are valued and gender is not an issue. The financial services industry, however, is still an area where women are underrepresented. As a sales professional within the industry, I have experienced situations where there were elements of gender discrimination, but I did not buy into these. They simply drove me to work harder.



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Teach For America

Villanueva Beard


FTER MY THIRD CHILD MARSHALL JOINED HIS TWO BROTHERS IN THE WORLD, I SPENT MY RARE QUIET MOMENTS REFLECTING ON HISTORY—MY OWN, MY COMMUNITY’S, AND OUR NATION’S. I grew up in the culturally rich Rio Grande Valley of South Texas. I was born to the hardest-working self-made woman you’ll ever meet and a father who was a proud first-generation college graduate. Having left school in Mexico after the eighth grade, my mother knew that education was the key to her children’s future. Unfortunately, many of my peers didn’t draw the hand I drew, and didn’t have the same opportunity I had to go to college. That’s unfair to them, their families, my community, and our country. In a country that many in the world look to as the land of opportunity, and at a time when a college education is more vital than ever, the inequality of our education system is glaring. Latino young adults attain college degrees at less than half the rate of their white peers. Only one in three black men who make it to college complete a degree within six years. The average graduation rate for Native Americans is lower than the rate for all other racial and ethnic groups in America. More than 16 million children are growing up in poverty, and only one in ten of them will earn a college degree. Yet this doesn’t have to be our future. We have hundreds of proof points of schools teaching students who are mostly from low socioeconomic backgrounds and kids of color competing with their more affluent peers at an absolute scale. In my home state of Texas alone, thousands of low-income Latino and African American students are going to and through college because of outstanding public schools like IDEA College Preparatory, where my husband was principal for five years. Today, as the first generation of graduates return to their communities to pay it forward, the pace of change continues to accelerate. With strong leadership and a commitment to doing whatever it takes for students to achieve, we must live up to our nation’s promise and ensure that every child has the opportunity to earn a college degree. Education is essential to solving so many other problems in our nation, and this has never been more true as we grapple with a sustained economic downturn and increasing globalization. If we join together to put education first and commit to expanding the path to college for every child in America, we’ll write the next chapter in our nation’s history as a story of equality, justice, and prosperity.



September/October 2012

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Yes, Mr. Mike Trevino, my high school English teacher, held me to the highest of expectations with the literature and the writing we did and deeply believed in me and my abilities.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Education is America’s greatest equalizer. Go for the stars, remain focused, and don’t let anyone tell you you are not capable. Discipline, hard work, and commitment will get you farther than you ever imagined.


New York City WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Nonprofit REVENUES: $286 million EMPLOYEES: 1,700 TITLE:

Chief Operating Officer EDUCATION:

BA, DePauw University FIRST JOB:

Teaching bilingual first and second grades in Phoenix public schools MY PHILOSOPHY:

Focus on what is within your control, don’t make excuses, always maintain a sense of possibility, and give your all every day. FAMILY: Being a wife and

mother of three boys is my biggest blessing.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Stephanie M.

Legg Mason, Inc.



EFORE MAKING ANY INVESTMENT, RESEARCH IS IMPORTANT. What are the costs and benefits? What are the risks to achieving the benefits and containing the costs? What are the ranges of outcomes and the probabilities of success? What qualitative aspects are important in addition to the quantitative analysis? My decision to major in business administration with a concentration in accounting was not based upon extensive quantitative or qualitative research, but anecdotal evidence, self-reflection, and happenstance. I enjoyed my high school science and mathematics classes, and considered nursing or some other medicinerelated career. Alas, my klutziness in the laboratory didn’t portend well for a career in medicine (first, do no harm . . . ). A chance conversation with an older relative practicing accounting revealed that he enjoyed his work, accounting jobs with attractive compensation would probably be available upon graduation, the prospect that an accounting background can lead to other opportunities, and local universities had good programs. I didn’t know with certainty what an accountant did or whether I would enjoy the work, but it seemed a reasonable direction to take. For today’s families contemplating an investment in college, the current challenging job market may seem discouraging. The costs (tuition and time) are known, but the returns are less certain and difficult to measure. My college experience provided much more than a specific marketable trade. I discovered an interest in economics that led to pursuing a second major. I started a path of learning and skill building that continues today, including time management, public speaking, and team-building. Education provided a framework to navigate an unforeseen career path to risk management. An investment in a college degree is not the right choice for everyone. Legendary, brilliant entrepreneurs come to mind, for whom formal courses of study were not enjoyable and the timing would have impeded their rapid progress or caused them to miss precisely striking a market opportunity. Also, individuals with specialized talents or skills may choose to pursue a career without a college degree. The ordinary smart and ambitious person will likely choose a college education to prepare for a desirable career. Once the decision to invest is made, the next decision is the amount of investment. With the escalating costs of tuition, families must carefully assess education and financing choices in light of the potential impact of debt payments on lifestyle post-college. In retrospect, my 17-year-old self did assess the costs (chose a public university), benefits (job, enjoyment) and range of outcomes (reasonable compensation, skills adaptable to other career paths). Investment in a college education has provided me with a premium return: work and a lifestyle I enjoy. September/October 2012

How has your education affected your career? Formal education was essential, but my curious nature and self-education continues to take me in delightful and interesting directions.

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? A speech class to learn to organize thoughts and communicate orally in a concise, persuasive manner.

What does it take to succeed in your position? Continuously gain knowledge and acquire new skills to keep pace with the growth and changes within my profession, organization, and industry.


Baltimore, Maryland WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Financial services and asset management REVENUES:

$2.6 billion EMPLOYEES:

2,979 TITLE:

Managing Director, Enterprise Risk Management EDUCATION:

BS, Towson University FIRST JOB:

An auditor was my first professional job, and a bakery clerk was my first paid job. MY PHILOSOPHY:

“Be prepared” has worked well for me.



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


True Value Company



Chicago, Illinois WEBSITE:


OR SCHOOLS, PREPARING STUDENTS TO ENTER THE WORKFORCE IN AN ENVIRONMENT OF EVER-CHANGING TECHNOLOGY AND NEW BUSINESS PRACTICES IS A CHALLENGE. I BELIEVE, HOWEVER, THERE IS ALSO A BROADER SET OF SKILLS REQUIRED TO EXCEL IN A CAREER THAT MAY BE GETTING OVERLOOKED BY EDUCATORS. What I believe is important is the development of the whole person in preparation for their career. Schools need programs that focus learning on adaptability, willingness to change, innovation, creativity, and the forming of strong relationships. Schools can enhance these skills through smaller class size, rigorous classroom debate, and project-based work; each develops much-needed emotional intelligence for one’s future success. Educators can also ensure students have opportunities for community service, club membership, and leadership. All of these activities are avenues for an individual to fully develop a broad skill set. I have seen the advantage these skills provide. Early in my career I worked in organizational development for a telecommunications firm. I witnessed many employees lose their jobs. Those who survived demonstrated adaptability—the willingness to try new assignments and transfer their learning from the known to the unknown. In my experiences in both the academic and corporate worlds, I meet a lot of students who have excelled in school—high GPA’s, strong test results, and solid technical skills— however, they struggle with some of the basics. While savvy with technology, some of these young people have trouble with writing and grammar. Others lack in the area of interpersonal communication. Many universities and corporations have created curriculum that focuses on technical and interpersonal skills and the basics, including business writing. Students receive support from courses which focus on conflict resolution, effective conversations, giving and receiving feedback, presentation skills, and social etiquette. These key skills are not only necessary to become effective professionals, they are critical to succeeding in life. For many, these skills have been overlooked in classrooms. Face-to-face socialization and interaction have been replaced with online courses and texting. Personally, I continue to build on these skills by stretching myself with new work assignments and raising my hand in my community to lead or volunteer. Each of these experiences teaches me something new about myself and continues to build my emotional intelligence. Educators who can integrate the development of these skills into their curriculum and everyday classroom experiences will help students develop into agile, innovative, well-rounded leaders.



September/October 2012

BUSINESS: Wholesale, distribution and retail REVENUES: $1.8 billion EMPLOYEES: 2,500 TITLE: Director, Talent Management and True Value University EDUCATION:

BA, Illinois Wesleyan University; MS, Illinois State University FIRST JOB:


Always make a difference. Be curious, committed, and compassionate. FAMILY:


› What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? I believe strongly in a liberal arts curriculum. Being taught conceptual thinking and exposed to a variety of thought processes encourages one to listen, gain an understanding of their own thought process, and to realize that there are many paths to a solution. ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Dr. Mel Goldstein had a profound impact during my graduate studies as he deeply influenced the direction of my academic pursuit into organizational psychology. Dr. Goldstein was an engaging professor, who was deeply invested in the long-term success of his students.


Making the D&I Connection OCTOBER 22-24, 2012 | CHICAGO, ILL.

The SHRM Diversity & Inclusion Conference & Exposition offers you the opportunity to learn how to produce positive and measurable results and change the way your organization does business. Join fellow HR professionals, diversity practitioners and other business leaders to get inspired by, collaborate and network with others who lead workplace diversity initiatives. This year’s conference covers a wide array of topics including how to: • make the business case for diversity and inclusion • develop a robust diversity and inclusion strategy that’s aligned with your organization’s business objectives • create a globally inclusive and culturally competent workforce • build measurement and accountability mechanisms … and much more.

KE YNOTE SPE AKERS Candi Castleberry

Chief Inclusion and Diversity Officer, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center

Leymah Gbowee

Nobel Peace Prize winner, columnist, Newsweek/ Daily Beast Africa

Jose Rene “J.R.” Martinez

The popular Game Changers series is back this year, featuring senior executives from Nationwide Insurance, Girl Scouts of America, Facebook, Peckham, Inc., SHRM, Xerox, The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and Weyerhaeuser. These Game Changers will discuss their strategies, setbacks and successes in developing their D&I programs and will provide real-life models for your own efforts.

Reserve your seat today.

Actor, motivational speaker and former U.S. Army soldier

Dr. John J. Medina

Developmental molecular biologist and research consultant


Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Thompson Coburn LLP



St. Louis, Missouri WEBSITE:


HEN I GRADUATED FROM LAW SCHOOL, MEN AND WOMEN WERE NECK-AND-NECK IN THEIR POSSESSION OF ADVANCED DEGREES. Last year women surpassed men on that front, but we’re still lagging on the executive front. Education has taken us this far, but I believe it’s up to women to close the gap. Achieving equality in any setting is a two-way street. It demands both an institutional commitment to equality and individual people who are willing to do the hard work required to make it a reality. In today’s workplace, the institutional commitment is often there. Right or wrong, it is now up to us— women and members of other minority groups—to finish the task. Right or wrong, it is up to us, because it is our opportunities, salaries, and advancement at stake. How do we get there? First, continue to be excellent. The opportunities and benefits we want (but only disproportionately achieve) demand excellent education and performance. Second, we must stay in the game. Even the most excellent will not advance if she abandons ship. Third, we must actively pursue our own advancement, and that of other women and minorities. Finally, we must speak up and be heard on policy issues that may impact our work and our lives. Back in 2010, I represented the Pink Pistols in a case that illustrates this last point. The U.S. Supreme Court had agreed to hear a landmark Second Amendment case involving the right to bear arms, McDonald v. Chicago. On its face, the issue appeared to be one for groups like the NRA, avid sportsmen, and constitutional wonks. But the Pink Pistols, a nationwide group of LGBT gun owners, wanted to be heard. I represented the Pink Pistols in an amicus brief in the case. We explained that laws preventing the use of firearms for self-defense in the home disproportionately impacted those individuals who are targets of domestic violence or hate crimes. The U.S. Supreme Court agreed. The majority cited our brief in a companion case. As that story illustrates, women and minorities often are uniquely positioned to offer insights that can help shape policies in ways that are favorable to their interests. It’s a huge reason why we’ve achieved such incredible gains in the arena of education. But to do that, we have to speak up. Individual professionals must make the choice to stay at their workplaces and push change into those organizations. It’s up to each of us to say, “I’m here. It’s my responsibility to speak up and move the ball forward.”



September/October 2012


$167.9 million EMPLOYEES: 684 TITLE: Partner EDUCATION:

BA, Westminster College; MTS, Harvard University; JD, Vanderbilt University FIRST JOB:

Working on our family farm, milking cows, and hauling hay MY PHILOSOPHY:

Many people have the will to win, but few have the will to prepare to win. FAMILY:

Partner Fran, dog Rosie

› How has your education affected your career? Education made my career possible. ›

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Courses that teach you to think and write clearly: English, political theory, philosophy

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Hard work, long hours, creativity, independent thinking, and the ability to persuade

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


The Structure Group



Houston, Texas WEBSITE:

“School curriculums should be geared more


Business advisory, system integration, and customized solution development services

toward DEVELOPING analytical skills and problem solving in general. ”


ODAY’S SCHOOL PROGRAMS WOULD BENEFIT FROM A PLATFORM WHICH WOULD OFFER HIGHER INTEGRATION OF STUDENTS WITH LOCAL BUSINESSES AIMED AT FOSTERING AN ENVIRONMENT OF MUTUAL BENEFIT. This type of effort could launch a myriad of possibilities such as improved cooperative education programs, joint research and development programs, courses lead by business personnel, and mentor advisor relationships between students, faculty, and business people. The big idea would be aimed at bridging the chasm between the typical student that traditional education turns out and the human capital that modern business needs to be successful. School curriculums should be geared more toward developing analytical skills and problem solving in general. Often I have found it is not only what you do know, but knowing how to apply what you know to solve a problem that does not have a clear solution. Most problems are not black and white and do not have one correct answer. In my experience, the challenge is in selecting the best solution to a problem that has no clear resolution. I have found program availability is not enough. Looking back, it seems to be about the choices I made as a student. I sought out programs that helped me build skills that prepared me for my chosen career path and unforeseen challenges ahead. These skills combined with the desire to continually learn and improve myself provided the strong foundation for my success in a heavily male-dominated industry that is both technology- and engineering-centric. I wish I had taken more math and science classes. I recommend students today focus in these areas, as well as technical writing and public speaking. Look for your areas of weakness and focus on improving these with your core strengths. When something seemed uncomfortable, I embraced it. I built skills to overcome it. I may not claim it as a true strength, but I have invested in my skills to attain a level that was above average. I took advantage of cooperative education programs and intern programs as soon as possible in my college career. These experiences provided a wealth of insight that no classroom experience could replicate. I began to build my future network and I gained significant confidence in entering my professional career. September/October 2012


Managing Partner EDUCATION:

BBA, Texas A&M University FIRST JOB:

Salesperson at JC Penney selling men’s work clothes MY PHILOSOPHY:

To whom much is given, much is required. FAMILY:

My husband David Schmidt and parents Bob Blackwood and Kay Vaughn

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Age has been more difficult than gender. Most of my career, I have been perceived to be “too young” in my position to be credible. In larger organizations, as I progressed through the ranks, I did see some bias around promotions. It seemed men played the game more, where women focused on the work. I dealt with discrimination largely by ignoring it; I refused to accept it as a limitation. I worked hard to exceed expectations on all of my responsibilities and have been almost always rewarded.



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


US Airways



WORLDWIDE JOURNEY CAN START IN THE SMALLEST OF PLACES. Spending a year as a Rotary Exchange Student post-high school and studying at Gustavus Adolphus inspired me to live abroad in Japan again. This opportunity to continue to learn about and respect different cultures helped me recognize early-on that the emerging global economy would soon interconnect people, markets, and cultures. Living in this global economy and competing with well-funded foreign country education programs, we must ask ourselves if the right education polices are in place for the next generation of students and for adults returning to educational institutions. Are we appropriating the necessary level of education funding to ensure success? My father and sister are lifelong educators and I so admire their dedication to their students and their profession. In many ways I’ve had a front row seat to the challenges facing the education system. My education and career afford me the opportunity, and indeed, the responsibility, to advocate for a quality education system and higher learning opportunities. A quality education system must include funding for a broad curriculum of the arts, sciences, language and literature. How does a student find out what inspires them, what motivates them, unless they have been exposed to multifaceted disciplines? What I see today is that curriculum, especially in the arts, are often the first casualties of short-sighted budget cuts. Educators, business leaders, and most importantly, parents, must insist that policymakers fund full curriculums from K-12 and in all forms of higher education. Arts, sciences, language, literature, technology and math are interrelated. In this hyper-competitive global economy the world is interconnected by technology. Markets are emerging, and millions of people are exposed to cultural diversity like never before. This economy requires highly-educated and highly-skilled workers, managers, engineers, and technicians. Aside from four-year institutions, community colleges offer accessible and affordable education programs. For many, these two-year programs provide the first step into higher learning. These institutions deserve appropriate funding levels from government, corporations, foundations, and citizens since they are often incubators and laboratories for developing new learning and teaching models and offer important trades skills necessary for the economy. Education develops critical thinking, teamwork, discipline, and personal responsibility, and is an investment that offers a lifelong return and reward. As a society, we must embrace education and make it our mission.

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Surround yourself with a diverse group of talented, creative and open-minded people. The airline industry is always changing and you need creative people in your organization to adapt quickly to those changes. › Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Yes, early in my career; it motivated me to develop skills that one day would allow me to assume the role of the person who sought to deny me career opportunities.



September/October 2012


Tempe, Arizona WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Commercial air transportation REVENUES: $13.1 billion EMPLOYEES: 32,000 TITLE:

Senior Vice President, Airport Customer Service, International and Cargo EDUCATION: BA, Gustavus

Adolphus College, St. Peter, Minnesota FIRST JOB: Working on a

farm when I was a teenager MY PHILOSOPHY: Work hard;

never compromise your ethics. Take advantage of and enjoy the great things in life. FAMILY:

My husband, parents, siblings and their families, my husband’s family and close friends

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


The Hartford Financial Services Group Inc.



Hartford, Connecticut WEBSITE:

“Education is an important CORNERSTONE, but


Financial services

growing a career comes from real life experiences.”

REVENUES: $21.9 billion


HILE STATISTICS SHOW THAT GENDER INEQUALITY STILL EXISTS IN THE PROFESSIONAL WORLD ON SEVERAL LEVELS, BEING A WOMAN HAS NEVER HELD ME BACK IN MY CAREER OR MADE ME FEEL LIKE I WAS MISSING OPPORTUNITIES. However, there were important factors that helped me clear hurdles along the way, beginning with my education. A strong education provides a solid foundation from which to grow in one’s career and the number of degrees earned by women compared to men clearly illustrates that women understand this. My education certainly helped prepare me for the road ahead and shape my career path. But to me, it’s not just about what you achieve in the classroom, it’s how you apply the lessons learned. Education is an important cornerstone, but growing a career comes from real life experiences. Women should not be afraid to take on a new, challenging role or project. Taking chances gives you the new experiences you can draw on as you continue to build your career. Another key success factor for me was building a strong professional network and finding trusted mentors to help guide my career. I find that women don’t do enough advocating for themselves. Speak up and be your own advocate. Show the members of your professional network what you have to offer and they too will begin to be an advocate for you. Many women with families may find it hard to get ahead in their careers. I’ve learned that, as a working mother, it is important to look at the big picture. I have three children and there were periods during my career when my family took precedent over my job and there were times that the job came first. What’s important is that I was able to take care of my responsibilities as a mother, while continuing to make significant contributions at work. It’s a balancing act, and you can’t be afraid to do what works for you, even if you have to take some risks along the way. I have been very fortunate to work in organizations that recognize the importance of workplace equality, but the reality is that others are not as lucky. Hard work is imperative; however I strongly believe that if you can be your own best advocate, successfully leveraging your education and the relationships you’ve built along the way, you’ll be able to overcome many obstacles. September/October 2012


President of Life Runoff EDUCATION:

BS, Bryant University FIRST JOB:

Staff Accountant, Arthur Andersen MY PHILOSOPHY:

Think straight, talk straight. This was Arthur Andersen’s philosophy and it has always stuck with me. FAMILY:

Three children

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? With the impact of globalization, courses on international studies are of increasing importance.

What does it take to succeed in your position? Communication is critical. You have to be able to communicate information in an effective matter, but listening is equally important.

› What advice would you give younger women about their education? Knowledge is power, so take full advantage of the opportunity to expand your thinking.



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner HEADQUARTERS:

Woonsocket, Rhode Island



$107 billion

CVS Caremark

Boratto “I really encourage them to think BROADLY and to be prepared to go outside of their comfort zone.”


200,000 TITLE:

Senior Vice President, Finance

› How has your education affected your career? Education helped me lay the foundation for my career in that it helped define for me not only what I wanted to do, but also what skill sets I would need to succeed at my chosen profession. And really, that’s it—education gave me the power to choose what I wanted to do.


BS, Rutgers University; MBA, Drexel University FIRST JOB:

A paper route

› What does it take to succeed in your position? It takes the ability to be open to new ideas and approaches. The danger in a profession like finance is to assume there is only one way to do something. But being a successful manager, of projects and people and your own time, requires an open-mindedness and innovative managerial style that isn’t as straightforward as the numbers on a spreadsheet.


Focus on that which you can control and on which you can have impact. FAMILY:

Married with three children


THINK YOUNG PEOPLE ENTERING THE WORKFORCE TODAY NEED TO UNDERSTAND THAT THEIR EDUCATION DOESN’T END WHEN THEY LEAVE COLLEGE; YOU’RE NEVER DONE LEARNING. I believe ultimate success is determined both by having a strong education but also by the experiences one gains while on the job and throughout their professional life. I knew I wanted to pursue a career in business, so I felt that getting an education was absolutely critical. It helped me have a clear understanding of not only what I wanted, but of what I was capable of getting. And that can be a powerful realization for someone at any point in their career. So when I entered the workforce, I had set some clear goals for myself. I knew, for example, that I wanted to be in finance, because it is what I love to do. I was also drawn to healthcare, because I wanted to be a part of an organization that was contributing to society in some significant way. I ultimately found myself working for a large pharmaceutical company, which developed important new vaccines for children and a landmark antiviral drug that changed the treatment regimen for HIV patients and quite literally saved lives. Being part of those important innovations, though only in a support role, were some of



September/October 2012

the most important and rewarding moments in my career. But I didn’t luck into that job or the jobs that followed. While my friends were at the beach, I pursued graduate school on the weekends. I also looked at every job as an opportunity to grow and develop. Throughout my career, when I have had the opportunity to be a mentor, occasionally a mentee would say, “I don’t think I am going to take that job because I don’t think I will like it.” My response to that always is, “But what if it is a stepping stone to your ultimate goal?” For example, a finance job I took was a position that many of my peers and other managers believed offered little opportunity for career growth. I took the position despite the negative perception. I did this because I thought I could learn more about the company and have an impact. That decision—the experience I gained, the people I met—truly laid the foundation for my career. So now, when people ask me for professional advice, I really encourage them to think broadly and to be prepared to go outside of their comfort zone. Those uncomfortable experiences ultimately inform who you are as a professional in ways that formal education often doesn’t. Education is important, but determination and focus are the true predictors of success.

Women who lead. Women who inspire.

Eva Boratto, SVP Finance, CVS Caremark We are proud to join in honoring our own Eva Boratto as a “Women Worth Watching 2013� Award Winner. As a pharmacy innovation company, CVS Caremark is reinventing pharmacy for better health. To do that, we need executives who bring passion, dedication and insight to getting the job done. Eva Borrato is that kind of leader. At CVS Caremark, we are proud of the amazing women who help shape who we are as a company. Their professionalism and leadership are as impressive as their drive to succeed. To learn more, please visit

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Maureen A.

Ameren Transmission Company


› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? It was very difficult when my children were young. I made career choices that put my family first. I was also fortunate to have family members nearby to help with the logistics of a busy family. › What does it take to succeed in your position? A vision for where you are going; trust, respect, and compassion for those you work with; and a strong belief in yourself ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? The principal of my high school, Sr. Margaret Brady, was a strong, confident woman. She motivated me to expect the best of myself, to set high goals, and to work hard to achieve them.


S AN ENGINEER, I AM THRILLED WHEN I SEE YOUNG WOMEN WHO ARE PASSIONATE ABOUT STEM, BUT UNFORTUNATELY, TOO FEW WOMEN ARE PURSUING THESE FIELDS. Women make up more than half of all college students today, but not enough enroll in STEM programs or are available for technical careers. I completed my college education more than 30 years ago and wonder why we have not made more progress. Those of us in technical fields owe it to young women to provide guidance, encouragement and remove the stereotype of STEM-related careers. It is necessary to get involved early in their educational development. If a young woman is not already on the path of taking challenging math and science courses by her sophomore year in high school, she will be unable to complete the required curriculum necessary to pursue many technical fields in college. Realistically, if a young woman’s interest in STEM isn’t encouraged in grade school, she is unlikely to take the challenging coursework in high school. Outreach is most effective to young women in grade school and early high school. When I speak with young women, I encourage them to take the most challenging STEM courses available, even if they’re not thinking of a future in a technical field. The problem solving, logic, and critical-thinking skills they will learn are useful in any career field or discipline. Group lab exercises and science projects foster teamwork skills necessary for success in any work environment. And practically speaking, if a young woman is unsure of her future career path, she can begin coursework in STEM courses and can easily transfer to another field. I offered this advice and encouragement to my own daughters. One majored in math and minored in finance. She is now employed in the financial services industry, using her math skills in a business environment. The other started as an engineering major and ultimately received her degree in psychology. She is now completing her doctorate in behavioral neuroscience, utilizing her math and science training in brain research. It’s also important to help these young women build confidence. Parents, teachers, and those in technical fields should always encourage young women to challenge themselves and to embrace STEM courses as a way to expand their capabilities and their future opportunities. We will all be better for it.



September/October 2012


St. Louis, Missouri WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Electric and gas transmission development REVENUES: $7 billion EMPLOYEES: 9,300 TITLE:

President and Chief Executive Officer EDUCATION:

BS, University of Notre Dame FIRST JOB:

Corporate industrial engineer at Anheuser Busch, Inc. MY PHILOSOPHY:

Be passionate in all you do. FAMILY:

Husband Dan and three children

salutes women



H C A H E A LT H C A R E . C O M

SuPPoRTing communiTy. Helping the Valley’s many communities thrive is at the heart of everything we do. After all, we live here too. For more than 100 years, SRP has supplied the Valley with water and energy. Besides being a steward of these crucial resources, SRP funds local charitable agencies that are improving our community daily through their programs and services. Whether it’s the arts, the environment, human services, education or economic development, SRP is committed to helping our many communities prosper for generations to come. To learn more, visit

Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Laura E. Brightwell, Coca-Cola Enterprises • Renee Castillo, Salt River Project • Christine Harumi Cadena, The Walt Disney Studios • Ashley Burke, DynCorp International Angela Maria Camacho, Microsoft Corp • Suzie Brown, Valassis • Virginia M. Brandt, Energizer Battery Manufacturing Moanica Caston, Georgia Power • Lynette Chappell-Williams, Cornell University • Juanita Brooks, Fish & Richardson • Millicent York Chancellor, Halliburton




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Virginia M.

St. Louis, Missouri WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Personal care and household products REVENUES:

$4.6 billion EMPLOYEES: 16,000 TITLE:

General Manager, Technology EDUCATION:

BS, University of Missouri-Columbia; MBA, Kent State University FIRST JOB:


Embrace the adventure in every opportunity. FAMILY:

My wonderful husband of 18 years

How has your education affected your career? STEM courses provided the technical know-how. This was especially important at the beginning of my career. The MBA gave me a broad business background that is essential to communicating effectively with colleagues and business partners in leadership roles.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My high school chemistry teacher inspired me to pursue the chemical field. She gave me recognition when I challenged the textbook’s answer because in chemistry there is nearly always an exception.

Energizer Battery Manufacturing, Inc.



FOUND MYSELF ASTOUNDED A COUPLE OF YEARS AGO WHEN I VOLUNTEERED TO SPEAK TO A SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING SUMMER CAMP GROUP OF MIDDLE SCHOOL-AGED GIRLS. One of the girls asked me to describe how difficult it is to work in an environment with only men. The “only men” reference surprised me coming from a group this young. I realized I had an opportunity to influence this group of young ladies and the parents and teachers who were standing in the back of the room. I believe gender socialization still plays a significant role in how women view STEM disciplines in education and as a career path. The fears of acceptance expressed by the young ladies in the room were genuine and concerned them greatly. I told them my story starting from the age of ten, when I discovered my passion for wanting to know how things worked and about all of the people, both men and women, who supported my learning and encouraged me to pursue my passion. I shared the wonderful experiences I’ve had in my career at Energizer, and the bosses, coaches, and mentors who encouraged me to solve difficult problems that inspired me to take on even greater challenges. My approach to challenge their assumptions and give them a picture of “this is what an engineer looks like” is only a small step in changing the mindset that engineering is a place where women are not welcomed. Women leaders in STEM fields can encourage participation of women to pursue STEM education through outreach. I hope that by telling my story, as I have done with many groups over the years, I am giving someone else the encouragement to pursue their passion. It’s easy to get involved in your own community and there are some great organizations that have missions to provide outreach in STEM fields. The energy I invest is more than returned to me in the goodwill feelings of making a difference. Companies and organizations that recognize women leaders in STEM disciplines are helping to create role models that can over time change the perceptions of women which may otherwise deter young women from pursuing a STEM education. They should be commended. Looking back on my decision to pursue my passion, I’ve been inspired by many individuals. I feel a great sense of gratitude and responsibility to pay it forward.

“I believe gender socialization still plays a SIGNIFICANT role in how women view STEM disciplines in education and as a career path.”



September/October 2012

“I feel like everyone here is rooting for me to succeed and move up.” Halliburton. Selected by the readers of Woman Engineer as one of the world’s top employers for women engineers. DeShawn Jackson, Production Enhancement Pinnacle Group Engineer, Halliburton With an electrical engineering degree from the University of Texas, DeShawn joined Halliburton in 2007. Her current responsibilities include installations and real-time monitoring for major independent and international oil companies.

© 2012 Halliburton. All rights reserved.

For years, women such as DeShawn Jackson have not only been welcomed into Halliburton’s engineering ranks, but they’ve also contributed a significant number of innovative, value-added solutions to our customers’most pressing challenges. Respect. Responsibility. Rewards. Whether you’re an experienced energy services engineer or an engineering student looking for a place to launch your career, visit us at

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Laura E.

Atlanta, Georgia WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Beverages REVENUES: $8.3 billion EMPLOYEES: 13,250 TITLE: Senior Vice President, Public Affairs and Communications EDUCATION:

BBA, University of Georgia and Hollins College, Paris FIRST JOB:

Legislative Aide on Capitol Hill to former U.S. Congressman Lindsay Thomas MY PHILOSOPHY:

Lead with integrity and passion, and encourage others to rise to the challenge. When you expect more, they deliver more. Often a high bar creates the greatest opportunities. FAMILY:

Son Crawford

How has your education affected your career? My international business education and affinity for language influenced my interest of working in a global business environment. Today, I understand not only how big, but also how small the world is.

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? It’s less about discrimination and more about opportunity. I feel I have an obligation to positively influence women and help them, through personal coaching and mentoring but also in influencing how organizations recruit and retain women.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Build and actively participate in networks. They help with career progression and increase your visibility internally and externally.


Coca-Cola Enterprises, Inc.



HEN IT COMES TO WORKPLACE EQUALITY, IT IS CRITICAL THAT WOMEN WITH STRONG EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUNDS HAVE AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY TO REPRESENT COMPANIES AT THE BOARD AND EXECUTIVE LEVELS. Studies show that companies with women on their boards outperform those whose seats are filled solely by men. While the rate of leadership positions filled by women is not as high as it should be, significant progress is being made. I live in England, a country that recently mandated top companies to have 25 percent female board membership by 2015, which is a step in the right direction (although there’s a long way to go to achieve that ambitious target). It is fundamental to use all of the talent available, not just part of it, and much of this talent comes from women with varying educational degrees. I work for a chairman and CEO who embraces women in leadership and throughout our company. One-third of Coca-Cola Enterprises’ Board of Directors (four out of 12) and one-third of the executive leadership team (two out of six) are women from diverse backgrounds, geographies, education levels, and areas of expertise. This encourages employees at all levels in the organization to embrace differences in thought, approach, and problem solving. Along with their educational background, I believe mentorship opportunities for women can help increase the number of women in boardrooms. I am proud to be a mentee in the FTSE100 Cross-Company Mentoring Program in the UK, which builds professional relationships between female leaders and some of the leading chairmen and executives. When senior leaders invest the time and energy to help advance women, the development of their careers can be significantly impacted in a positive way. There is hard work ahead to improve gender disparity, but I am hopeful and proud of the companies who are setting the bar high and offering opportunities that encourage the advancement of women in the workplace and boardroom. This is the moment to be more courageous and to make a change.


“Studies show that companies with women on their boards OUTPERFORM those whose seats are filled solely by men. ” September/October 2012

Coca-Cola Enterprises congratulates

LAURA BRIGHTWELL for being named one of this year’s Women Worth Watching

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner



San Diego, California WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Intellectual property law firm

Fish & Richardson

Brooks “If you don't brag about yourself, no one else will . . . no one will know what you’ve ACCOMPLISHED.”

REVENUES: $377 million EMPLOYEES: 1,200 TITLE: Principal EDUCATION:

BA, San Diego State University; JD, Yale Law School MY PHILOSOPHY:

It can be done—in other words, if you set your mind to it, there is nothing you can’t achieve. I’ve tried to instill this philosophy in my children because it has served me well in my life and will hopefully do the same for them. FAMILY:

Husband Michael; daughter Rose and son Jai

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My fifth grade teacher, Mr. Harrison, had the most profound impact on my life. Going to school was an escape for me and Mr. Harrison’s teaching method made it even more so. Instead of giving grades, he gave “money.” At the end of every month, Mr. Harrison would hold an auction and the students could use the money in their bank accounts to bid on various things. What his teaching method taught me was the value of patience, saving, and hard work. I was able to see and do things that my family never would have been able to afford and I was able to do so through my own efforts.



HY DO I THINK WOMEN HAVE NOT ADVANCED EQUALLY IN THE WORKPLACE IF THEY ACHIEVE AT A SUPERIOR RATE IN EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS? The answer is quite simple and tragically can be found in the cliché “It’s not what you know that counts, it’s who you know.” As women move from the classroom into the workplace, they may not even realize it, but the rules change. It’s no longer enough to be the smartest in the class. In order to get ahead in the world of business, one not only has to be smart, but savvy and get the attention of the people at the top. Do I think there are things that could be done to change this disparity in the professional arena? Absolutely. One thing that can be done is to continue to educate women about how to function successfully in what is still a man’s world. There is a book that was recently made into a movie, Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man. I’m actually thinking about writing a book that teaches just the opposite: “Think Like a Woman, Act Like a Man.” I find it fascinating that most men in the business world have no trouble bragging about themselves and their accomplishments, whether justified or not, but women are extremely uncomfortable talking about themselves at all, let alone bragging. If you don’t brag about yourself, no one else will. If no one else brags about you, no one will know what you’ve accomplished. If no one knows what you’ve accomplished, no one is going to reward you for those accomplishments. So if you want to get ahead, you have to let people know why you deserve a promotion or a position on the board. Another thing that can be done is to try to level the playing field. How many deals are done on the golf course? The answer is too many. Having taken golf lessons and failed miserably, I started a retreat at my firm hosted by our women partners for our women clients. Instead of playing golf, we have some substantive panel discussions, followed by spa treatments. It’s been a huge success.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Valassis Communications, Inc.



Livonia, Michigan WEBSITE:

“Once we get women into the right roles, we need to actively sponsor their ADVANCEMENT.”


Media and marketing services


REVENUES: $2.2 billion

ESPITE EARNING MORE ADVANCED COLLEGE DEGREES, WOMEN LAG IN EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP POSITIONS, BOARD MEMBERSHIPS, AND COMPENSATION, BECAUSE COLLEGE DOES NOT FULLY PREPARE FOR THE CULTURAL OBSTACLES WOMEN FACE ONCE THEY ARRIVE IN THE PRIVATE SECTOR. There are three things women can do to help change the status quo: rethink career pathing, sponsor women within one’s own companies, and openly talk about gender differences and inequality in the workplace. Getting women in the right roles to gain the right experience is paramount. This requires rethinking of traditional career paths for women. Conventional wisdom tells women to choose more service-oriented career paths that lack the P&L responsibilities needed for advancement. We need to prepare women in college, and coach them once they enter the workforce to take risks and choose positions where their contributions are reflected in the company’s bottom line. I’ve benefited greatly throughout my career by taking risks and having the measurable results to show for it. Once we get women into the right roles, we need to actively sponsor their advancement. Because women tend to have a less assertive communication style than men in promoting ourselves and seeking advancement, we need to sponsor high-performing women to ensure they receive the recognition and visibility they deserve. While mentoring is helpful, sponsorship takes a more active advocacy role, such as offering their names during informal discussions about new opportunities. I was fortunate to have a great sponsor. As the most senior sales and marketing executive, he recognized my achievements and put my name in the hat for new opportunities. I often ask up-andcoming women, who is your advocate? Who knows what you are accomplishing and is actively looking out for you? It helps to have a formal process. Finally, as senior executive women, we must be willing to have courageous conversations. In the boardrooms and in the executive suites, we need to openly discuss the underrepresentation of women and minorities. If we want our companies to be relevant and successful in the future, leadership must reflect the world in which we live and work. And that includes women at all levels. The status quo is unacceptable. When we speak up, and only when we speak up, can we change the course of events. September/October 2012


Executive Vice President, Sales and Marketing EDUCATION:

BS, Virginia Tech FIRST JOB:

Professional sales representative at Procter & Gamble MY PHILOSOPHY:

Do the right thing, even when nobody is watching. FAMILY:

A wonderful partner, and two loving sons

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Take courses to become a great writer, speaker, and get comfortable with numbers.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Barbara Simpson, my high school teacher. She taught me about candid communication, authenticity, and courage to be you.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I’ve learned you will never regret missing a meeting at work, but you will regret missing your son’s football game.



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


DynCorp International



ITH JUST 4 PERCENT OF THE COMPANIES ON THIS YEAR’S FORTUNE 500 LIST LED BY FEMALE CEOS, THE PAUCITY OF WOMEN IN CORPORATE LEADERSHIP POSITIONS IS EVIDENCE THAT THE ADVANCEMENT OF WOMEN IN THE WORKPLACE IS AN ISSUE OF GREAT DEBATE. Every year, however, it seems as though nerves are rubbed raw when this disparity is discovered anew. Rather than focusing on why women aren’t in more of these positions, perhaps the most salient question is: what traits are shared by those women who have succeeded in leadership roles? I believe strongly that while the answer might start with education and can be supported in the workplace, it certainly does not end there. Let me stress that I do not minimize the value of a good education. In my own experience, the all-girls school I attended until college established a strong foundation that shaped my lifelong perception of my potential. In school, my classmates and I assumed we could all become CEOs, doctors, engineers, diplomats, or politicians, not because of any specific classes on women in leadership— in fact, I can’t recall having one—but because, quite frankly, we lived each day in an environment that primed us to see ourselves in those roles. Similarly, companies can do many things to help aspiring women, such as offering leadership programs, mentoring, supportive environments that nurture female talent, and flexible work schedules for those with families. But there is also a theory that energy follows thought. Under that theory, if our life experiences haven’t brought us to the workplace with the personal belief that we deserve a place at the top, corporate initiatives cannot create that ambition or self-perception. Every one of us has a unique path that is very personal. While a strong education and supportive companies can be common threads connecting successful women, they must be reinforced by the experiences we accumulate and belief in our own potential. If you look at any determined and successful woman, you will see an executive who added skills assiduously, took risks, and dedicated herself to moving progressively into jobs with higher and higher responsibilities. At the heart of those observations, however, you will see a woman who has a strong belief in her own potential. Role models show us that the road to success can be long but rewarding, paved with education, experience, and knowledge. It is incumbent upon all of us to work within our families and communities to ensure that future generations of women see themselves as natural leaders and inherently believe that professional ambition isn’t gender specific.



September/October 2012

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Interestingly, the teachers who discouraged me most had the greatest impact; when told I couldn’t achieve something it was exactly what I set my mind to do.

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Prior to joining DI, I certainly encountered discrimination in the workplace but worked hard not to let it affect me; others’ shortcomings are not my own.

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Flexibility and an understanding husband


Falls Church, Virginia WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Government services REVENUES:

$3.7 billion EMPLOYEES:

25,000 TITLE:

Vice President, Communications EDUCATION:

BA, Washington and Lee University FIRST JOB:

Production assistant in broadcast television MY PHILOSOPHY:

Be prepared for anything. FAMILY:

I’m expecting a baby this fall.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Christine Harumi

The Walt Disney Studios

Cadena “C-suite commitment to talent planning must include identifying up-and-coming talented women and direct MENTORSHIP from every one of the most senior leaders in the organization.”


TTITUDES TOWARD WOMEN IN EDUCATION AND THE WORKPLACE HAVE CHANGED DRAMATICALLY OVER THE LAST SEVERAL DECADES. However, while women have made great strides in education, challenging gender disparity in the professional arena still requires a commitment by those in leadership. In many cases, it’s simply that things continue to be done the way they always have been. Change has to begin with a clear and visible CEO commitment, reframing the challenge as a business imperative. It’s been well-documented that companies with women on their executive committees perform better financially, yet women are barely present on boards and remain underrepresented in corporate leadership roles. Embracing the idea that diversity drives innovation and maximizes the talent pool better equips companies to win. So far much of the burden of closing the gender gap has rested with women who currently hold leadership roles. We act as visible role models who build a framework that supports work/life balance, and we often personally mentor other women in our organization. But there aren’t enough of us. Try as we might, our impact cannot multiply quick enough to gain the ground we need to catch up. That same commitment has to be modeled across genders and throughout the business for a true cultural shift to take root. More importantly, C-suite commitment to talent planning must include identifying up-and-coming talented women and direct mentorship from every one of the most senior leaders in the organization. I’m fortunate to be in an organization that sees diversity in the workplace as a business imperative, and in a position where I can continue to be an advocate for that. Access, accompanied by mentorship, driven by a clear business imperative from the top and supported by an inclusive business culture—if we can accomplish this, we will see the numbers grow.


Burbank, California WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Entertainment REVENUES: $40.9 billion (The Walt Disney Company) EMPLOYEES: 156,000

(The Walt Disney Company) TITLE:

Senior Vice President, Multicultural Initiatives, The Walt Disney Studios (segment of The Walt Disney Company) EDUCATION: BA, UCLA FIRST JOB:

Nordstrom Buyer MY PHILOSOPHY:

There is no standing still. If you are not moving forward you are moving backwards. FAMILY: Three children:

Megan, Matthew, Max

How has your education affected your career? My parents were immigrants whose lives were interrupted by the Japanese-American internment camps. My sister and I were the first in our family to graduate from high school, and education opened my heart and mind to a universe of opportunities.

› What does it take to succeed in your position? You need to be able to see the big picture, be willing to challenge the status quo, collaborate with and adapt to each player, and be sure to add value at every step. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Angela Maria

Redmond, Washington WEBSITE:

Camacho “We need girls to have STRONG female role models.”

BUSINESS: Software, solutions, and services REVENUES: $70 billion EMPLOYEES: 93,163 TITLE: Associate

General Counsel EDUCATION:

Master’s, JD, Universidad Externado de Colombia, Bogota, Colombia FIRST JOB: Intern in a law

firm in Colombia MY PHILOSOPHY:

I believe that winning is about heart. A woman becomes what she believes herself to be. FAMILY:

I am married, with one child. I am a mother, a wife, a daughter, and a sister.

How has your education affected your career? Education has provided me with selfconfidence, the capacity to struggle for my own rights and independence, and the ability to undertake my own decisions.

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Political philosophy, ethics, negotiation, mediation, macroeconomics, finance, and courses designed to improve confidence in speaking

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Education empowers you and it enables you to make smart choices and gives you the resources to act. Investing in your education means investing in your freedom and long-term happiness.


Microsoft Corp


N THE LARGEST SENSE OF THE WORD, EMPOWERMENT IS THE EXPANSION IN THE FREEDOM TO CHOOSE AND TO ACT. I believe that education is the key to empowerment. Yet much of today’s global youth— especially women—do not have access to the education they need to truly be empowered. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) says that girls are less likely to choose STEM fields of study, and even when they do, they are less likely to take up a career in these fields. There are many things that we can do to address this issue. Government, schools, and the private sector need to explore cooperation strategies such as information or career fairs in schools for both parents and students to raise the interest of girls in science-related subjects. There is a cultural shift that needs to take place so that fewer girls skip their education to marry very young or become the family caretaker—common practices in several developing countries. There’s also a lot we can do in the private sector. And that’s why I love working at Microsoft. The company is very passionate about this topic and offers a number of exciting initiatives to help prepare educators and youth—especially girls—for an increasingly technological tomorrow. These initiatives include the Partners in Learning program, in which technology training, 21st century skills and pedagogical content is provided to more than 200 thousand educators of Latin America every year; over 60 percent of those are women. More than a dozen female teachers from Brazil, El Salvador, Argentina, Mexico and Colombia have been recognized globally as Innovative Teachers because they changed the educational paradigm in their own communities. These types of programs are so critical for us to continue because they inspire girls and deliver results. We need them to see that rewarding career opportunities exist for them and their contributions in the STEM industries are so needed. Most importantly, we need girls to have strong female role models. My mother instilled the importance of education early on and told me with a good education, I could grow up to be anything I wanted. And that was a very empowering message.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Salt River Project (SRP)




“The good news is the generation that is coming

Public power utility

into the WORKFORCE understands technology and cannot live without it.”


REVENUES: $2.8 billion EMPLOYEES: 4,852

ALT RIVER PROJECT PROVIDES WATER AND POWER TO MORE THAN TWO MILLION GREATER PHOENIX RESIDENTS, WHICH MEANS THOUSANDS OF CUSTOMER INQUIRIES EACH DAY. In fact, every company utilizes some form of customer service, and for that reason I think more colleges and universities should embrace curriculum that exposes students to the value of service excellence. Exemplary customer service requires skill, training, and an understanding of how people think and what they value. It’s also important for students coming out of college today to know how to analyze situations and not take everything at face value. They need to be able to ask, “How can this customer be best served? What can I do to exceed their expectations?” For that reason, I would like to see more colleges teach students how to hone in on a problem, conduct creative analysis, and come up with a solution that meets the needs of the customer as well as the organization. In addition, customer service has evolved. It’s not just about verbal communication, which takes place between two individuals either in person or by phone. It’s also about communicating via your website, texts on a mobile phone, as well as live chats between two individuals who may live hundreds—if not thousands—of miles apart. The good news is the generation that is coming into the workforce understands technology and cannot live without it. They have quite literally grown up with all of these tools in the palms of their hands. The key is to help them leverage the technology they have at their fingertips and apply that to a business setting. Companies that understand the importance of customer service will reap the benefits of a happy customer base, empowered employees, and a successful business. But it’s a constantly changing dynamic that requires educated employees willing to learn, evolve and be up to the challenge.

TITLE: Senior Director, Customer Services EDUCATION: BA, Western

International University; MA, Northern Arizona University FIRST JOB:

Lerner’s clothing store sales clerk MY PHILOSOPHY:

A positive attitude helps me see the intangible and achieve the unattainable. FAMILY:

My husband, Tony; a great stepson who gave us our beautiful four-year-old granddaughter

› What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Courses centered on business case studies allowed me to leverage the experience and think through a particular business situation within a safe environment. › Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? I do not believe discrimination has affected me. Like others, I’ve worked very hard to distinguish the value I bring to the organization. › What advice would you give younger women about their education? As life goes on, your career path may not match your educational background and that’s ok. Just never stop learning. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Atlanta, Georgia WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Electric utility


Caston “The researchers concluded that YOUNG WOMEN

REVENUES: $950 million EMPLOYEES: 8,310 TITLE:

Vice President, Diversity and Inclusion EDUCATION:

BS, Louisiana State University; JD, Harvard Law School FIRST JOB:

Cashier at Wendy's; First real job was an associate with a law firm MY PHILOSOPHY:

Everything happens the way it is supposed to happen. FAMILY:

Husband Henry and dog Baxter


Georgia Power


need further exposure to STEM careers and the world of possibilities they open up.”


MERICA NEEDS A WORKFORCE SKILLED IN STEM TO REMAIN GLOBALLY COMPETITIVE. We know that innovation thrives in the presence of diversity, which makes the underrepresentation of women in STEM professions a matter of national concern. Fortunately, a lot of valuable research has recently been conducted to examine why this shortage of women in STEM professions exists, and what we can do to address it. A study by the Girl Scout Research Institute offers some fascinating insights. Many young women are interested in STEM and aspire to STEM-related professions, but these aren’t always their first choices, the study found. These young women have a lot of other competing interests and opportunities. The researchers concluded that young women need further exposure to STEM careers and the world of possibilities they open up. For the most part, however, I believe a lot of the old stereotypes about science and math geeks have been shattered. Most young women realize the smart phones, iPods and all those other neat little gadgets we can’t do without—all that is due to the brilliance and creativity of someone who likely did very well in science and math. Increasing the number of women in STEM fields must be a collective effort involving communities, families, and schools. Even those of us in corporate America have a role to play, especially when it comes to providing mentors and exposure to STEM-related professions. One of the critical things I’ve learned in my career is the importance of having mentors and strong role models to motivate and inspire me—to serve as visible reminders that everything is possible, that I need consider no job beyond my reach. I challenge all women in both our personal and professional capacities to get involved in organizations such as the Girl Scouts, the Society of Women Engineers, and others that provide the platforms for women to be mentors and role models for this next generation of young women. By encouraging them and each other to contribute through our own particular talents, we can play a role in maintaining our nation’s technological edge.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? I’ll never forget my fifth grade teacher, Mrs. Safford. I was a good student and used to always making As. She showed me there is always room for improvement.

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? I don't know that I’d call it discrimination, but because I’ve always worked on the “soft” side, the people side of things, I have to make sure I’m connecting the dots for people. Remind them that everything gets done through people.

September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Millicent York




Houston, Texas and Dubai, United Arab Emirates WEBSITE:


N ADDITION TO MY FAMILY, SOME OF THE PEOPLE WHO MADE THE MOST EXTRAORDINARY IMPACT ON MY LIFE AND WHAT I HAVE BEEN ABLE TO ACHIEVE WERE THE TEACHERS I HAD AS A CHILD. My work ethic, desire to achieve, the profession I chose, and my confidence can be attributed in large part to the positive and lasting impression those teachers made on me. I grew up at a time and in a community where teachers were respected, even revered. The profession attracted some of the best and brightest in my community. My parents respected my teachers and trusted them to provide me with an education that would improve my life and help me be the best I could be. My parents instilled in me a respect for my teachers that equaled my respect for them. They believed that education requires a partnership between parents and teachers. Too often today teachers are viewed not as partners but as subordinates. But if we expect our bright young people to view teaching as a wonderful, attractive profession, the relationship between parents and teachers must improve. Teachers must feel safe and not be intimidated or undermined by meddling, unappreciative or disrespectful parents. There should be contracts and training that set expectations for parents on providing proper support and involvement, and showing appropriate respect for teachers. Teachers need clear, meaningful measures of success that determine how well children are performing, not only as a group but also on the basis of individual ability. Many state standardized tests seem to push teachers into teaching all their students to a minimum common denominator rather than encouraging the best performance out of each individual student. The profession has to be financially attractive, certainly, but more importantly, teachers must be provided with the tools to be successful. Administrative assistance, smaller classes, adequate budgets—these improvements would help create a more inspiring and supportive environment for teachers. Universities and colleges should include in their curriculum courses that prepare teachers to be the person who turns on the light, awakens the joy, and sparks creative expression within all children—the teacher who ignites a passion for learning. A good friend of mine, an excellent teacher, expressed it this way: “If the children haven’t learned, I haven’t taught well. I will teach and re-teach until the students can tell it, show it, and apply it.” Those are the teachers who change lives. September/October 2012


Energy services REVENUES: $25 billion EMPLOYEES: 70,000 TITLE:

Vice President, Finance EDUCATION:

BS, Florida A&M University; MBA, Duke University FIRST JOB:

Salesperson at 16 in shoe boutique MY PHILOSOPHY:

Do for others what you would want them to do for you. FAMILY:

Husband Steven and daughter Kendall

How has your education affected your career? Choosing to get an education in accounting led to a great experience working in the field of public accounting, which led to a rewarding position in industry. Choosing to get an MBA helped me to enhance my skills and broaden my perspectives on running a successful business.

› What advice would you give younger women about their education? Become technically proficient and, if you want to lead, include courses on management. Gaining practical experience before pursuing an MBA from a respected institution will greatly enhance what you get out of your degree.



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Cornell University



HEN MY NOW-ELEVENTH GRADE DAUGHTER TOLD FRIENDS THAT SHE WAS GOING INTO FORENSIC SCIENCE AS A CAREER, THE RESPONSE WAS TWO QUESTIONS: WHY? WHY WOULD A GIRL WANT TO DO THAT? One of our greatest challenges in increasing the representation of women—particularly women of color—in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) fields is societal attitudes of what are “appropriate” fields for women. Research shows that women in STEM programs experience stereotypes and unconscious biases. We can address these challenges by expanding STEM outreach beyond middle school, where efforts currently start, to pre-school and kindergarten. As young female children are encouraged to pursue math and science, it will hopefully become more culturally “normal” to explore these career options as adults. Also, we should provide greater HEADQUARTERS: training for teachers to help Ithaca, New York them address stereotypes and WEBSITE: unconscious biases in the classroom, in terms of BUSINESS: Higher education their own behavior and REVENUES: $3.1 million that of the students. Another significant EMPLOYEES: 10,000 challenge is addressing

the micro-inequities experienced by women, especially those in STEM careers. One of these experiences is the “invisible woman” syndrome: a woman makes a statement or a suggestion in a meeting, but it is ignored. A male colleague makes the same statement/suggestion, and it is acknowledged and sometimes praised. Providing training to those in leadership and educational roles can reduce the frequency of micro-inequities, which have the potential of impacting the success of women. Another challenge? Providing greater support to women faculty, in order to retain them in their positions, thereby creating a critical mass of faculty who can serve as role models to young women pursuing their education in STEM fields. At Cornell University, the National Science Foundation-funded ADVANCE program provides workshops and networking opportunities to help women in STEM fields create a sense of community. Lastly, we need to address the challenge of women who want to pursue a career and a family. Career/family integration or “fit” needs to go beyond the mere existence of a policy—to become a cultural change that encourages and supports women in successfully addressing both their careers and their responsibilities and interests outside of work. My own experience reflects the benefits of a flexible workplace culture: without the support of my organization for a flexible work schedule, excelling at work and raising a child as a single parent would not have been able to happen—and this recognition would never have been possible.


Associate Vice President, Inclusion and Workforce Diversity EDUCATION: BS, James

Madison University; JD, The Ohio State University FIRST JOB: Judicial Law

Clerk with Federal Court of Appeals for 4th Circuit, Richmond, Virginia MY PHILOSOPHY:

Life is what you make it, so make it the best. FAMILY: In addition to my

daughter, my father, aunts, siblings, and a dog



September/October 2012

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Psychology to understand the best strategies for interacting with others, statistics to have a foundation for analyzing problems, and an art course to develop creative thinking

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? My success in balancing a full-time career and raising a child as a single parent is possible through the support of a flexible work environment by my employer, a “village” of friends who provide a support network when I have late meetings or overnight travel, the flexibility of my daughter who understands that we must “go with the flow,” strong organizational skills, and the ability to develop contingency plans on the fly.



Take time to recognize the good around you.

At New York Life, we recognize that employees’ unique qualities often lead to innovation, positive change, and a more productive and dynamic workplace.

For more information about New York Life visit us at Š 2012 New York Life Insurance Company, 51 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10010

Life Insurance. Retirement. Investments.



“At CSC, we believe that diversity empowers creativity and fosters collaboration, openness and innovation. It brings together unique perspectives, fresh ways of thinking and new insights for solving our clients’ most intractable IT challenges.”



— Jose S. Jimenez CSC Chief Diversity Officer

Mary Davis: a WOMaN WOrTH WaTCHiNG We salute Mary Davis, VP, ITIS Client Delivery, Information Technology Infrastructure Solutions (ITIS), selected by the Diversity Journal for “Women Worth Watching” in 2013.

CSC is an Equal Opportunity Employer, M/F/D/V.

Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Jennifer Cyra, OfficeMax Inc. • Beatrix Dart, Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto • Dianne Craig, Ford Motor Company of Canada, Limited • Tory Clarke, Bridge Partners LLC Shantella Cooper, Lockheed Martin Corporation • Mary P. Davis, CSC • Erica Coogan, Moss Adams Wealth Advisors LLC • Jana J. Davis, HCA Sherry Chris, Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate • Kelly McNamara Corley, Discover Financial Services • Jingrong Jean Cui, Pfizer Inc. • Jamie Chung, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate



ODAY’S PROFESSIONAL LANDSCAPE IS DEFINED BY AN EVOLUTION OF TECH AND BUSINESS FIELDS THAT OUTPACE THE COINCIDING EVOLUTION OF SCHOOL CURRICULA. I’ve seen three key business trends that have resulted from technological innovation throughout recent years— the art of relationship building has forever changed; the idea of creating, maintaining, and protecting a personal and professional brand is more complex; and technology has changed the way teams are built and managed. If these trends are addressed within college courses, it would serve the next generation of leaders well. That said, I propose the following courses be integrated into college curricula through a case study approach to give our future leaders real life learning experiences. Relationship Building and Communication via Online Platforms Communication is important, but ethical, authentic communication is paramount. While social networking gives business leaders the freedom to interact with anyone, it demands a high level of accountability, strategy, and responsibility. It’s critical that future leaders are educated on the way to build and nurture meaningHEADQUARTERS: ful, long-term professional relationships online. They must understand the multitude of comParsippany, New Jersey munication approaches within the social media spectrum to earn and maintain trust among WEBSITE: networks of thousands of individuals watching, learning, and communicating with them. Reputation Management in an Online World BUSINESS: Real estate Young adults may not realize that their future reputation is built today. I have built a strong business reputation through social platforms and have generated business EMPLOYEES: 7,522 employleads through Facebook, illustrating that, if harnessed correctly, technology and social ees and agents media can be a key element to success. Your personal brand is on display all the time. TITLE: The line between personal and professional reputation is blurred, and I have seen some President & CEO people flourish and others tarnish their reputations due to their social media actions. Be conscious, deliberate, and strategic in all that is communicated. A tweet, post, or EDUCATION: click of a mouse can permanently affect your reputation. BA, University of Western Ontario; Technology at the Core of Business Leadership MBA, Richard Ivey Technology must be understood as an enabler to lead, develop, and mobilize a team School of Business of the future. With technologies ranging from social media to cloud computing, the FIRST JOB: Business structure and productivity level of teams have changed. Teams can now be global or Development Officer remote and achieve more than ever. Therefore, the role of a leader has changed in terms of finding, deploying, and motivating talent. The idea of strategic planning has MY PHILOSOPHY: also evolved. We used to work against five-year business plans, but now plans are more Take calculated risks; always emphasize agile and shorter because technology has made us much more adaptable. teamwork; and display passion, authenticity, innovation, growth and excellence in all that you do. FAMILY:



› What does it take to succeed in your position? Flexibility, the ability to empower people around you to unleash their creativity, empathy, ethics, a good reputation and a strong team that understands the main objectives for your business › Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Luckily, I have had several mentors that have helped guide me through various stages of my career.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Jamie ›

What does it take to succeed in your position? I need to be informed, calm, thoughtful, open to a variety of opinions, and willing to make hard decisions.

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Absolutely. I have treated it like any other obstacle and figured out ways to achieve my goals despite any discrimination. I have owned the outcome.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I thoughtfully prioritize things, you can’t do it all. I make sure that I get help and I don’t feel guilty about taking care of myself.


Bentonville, Arkansas WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Retail REVENUES: $443 billion EMPLOYEES: 2 million TITLE:

Senior Vice President and General Counsel, Walmart Global eCommerce EDUCATION:

BA, Pomona College; JD, Harvard Law School FIRST JOB:

Associate at the law firm of Cooley LLP MY PHILOSOPHY: Be

self-aware, treat others with respect and compassion, and own the outcome. FAMILY:

My husband Curtis and daughter Maile

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.



T WALMART, WHILE WE’RE CELEBRATING OUR 50th ANNIVERSARY THIS YEAR, WE TALK MORE IN TERMS OF THE NEXT GENERATION . . . A FORWARD LOOKING PERSPECTIVE OF HOW WE WILL WRITE A BRAND NEW STORY OF THE NEXT 50 YEARS TO HELP MORE PEOPLE AROUND THE WORLD HAVE A BETTER LIFE. One of the factors that will determine our future success as a company is the quality of an individual’s education. Walmart’s Lifelong Learning Program offers a competitive advantage to 1.4 million U.S. associates to attend college while also working at the company, through a partnership with American Public University (APU). The partnership puts associates on a faster track to earning a college degree, reduces their length of time in school, and makes the overall cost of education more affordable. Personally, I was fortunate to grow up in Hawaii where I attended a very wellestablished private school that provided a strong base for my entire education. The curriculum was well-rounded and the teachers focused on ensuring that every student understood why education was key to success in their lives. Being academically successful was just as “cool” as being a great athlete. That solid foundation prepared me well when I enrolled in Harvard Law School and later served as a partner in a law firm and general counsel in my professional life. The impact of education is far-reaching and allows us to gain the necessary skills and confidence to succeed. We have to realize that times have changed and the skills that students need are very different from even twenty years ago when the internet was just gaining momentum. We have a better understanding of how everyone learns differently and must be taught using various teaching methodologies. Our educational system must evolve. To unlock a student’s fullest potential, the student must be taught in a way that best aligns to his or her most natural learning style. Most curricula today teach students about roles and boundaries from books that are outdated and non-inclusive. I believe that students will learn more quickly and effectively if they can experience it using their five senses. We should offer students immersive learning experiences that not only teach information but also focuses on having students hone the practical, real life skills necessary to succeed in this quickly changing world. Our environment is becoming increasingly more global. We must expand beyond teaching just English. We cannot consider foreign languages as elective—they must be seen as essential. By including foreign languages, cultural diversity, and public speaking classes into school curricula, students will be better prepared for life outside of the classroom. That is the purpose of next-generation education. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Tory ›

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? If one has a strong career vocation then, of course, take the appropriate courses. However, I am a strong believer that education is about how to learn, as well as what you learn—be passionate about what you study and ensure that you are exposed to new experiences and people.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My family and professional mentors have had a greater influence than educators. I was incredibly lucky to work for a couple of extremely inspiring, open, and altruistic executives early in my career.


New York City WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Executive search, with a focus on senior-level diversity REVENUES: $1-5 million EMPLOYEES: 5 TITLE:

Co-founding Partner EDUCATION: MA, University

of Edinburgh FIRST JOB: Executive search MY PHILOSOPHY:

Relationships and integrity are everything. FAMILY:

I grew up in the U.K. and still have roots there but have lived in the U.S. for over a decade. We now have a little American boy, so I need to figure out baseball.


Bridge Partners LLC


“Don’t tell these YOUNG WOMEN that hundreds have gone before them if that isn’t the case.”


N TERMS OF ADDRESSING THE GAP IN STEM, IT SOUNDS OBVIOUS, BUT IT’S ALL ABOUT DIVERSITY. Statistics show that there is not a lack of interest in STEM from young women at school and, although the numbers drop at graduate level, they are still significant. In fact, many young women even begin their career in STEM. The biggest challenge is that many leave the sector because they are not shown a path to success and the culture does not understand the importance of highlighting this path. Show girls and young women that they can be successful in STEM and they will aspire to being a part of that world. Show them positive female role models (or even just role models who don’t fit the typical “brogrammer” versus “nerd” stereotype) and they will want to be that person. Show them that there are many, many different career paths within STEM and they will explore. Show them the impact that they can have on the world through a STEM career and they will want to be a part of it. We know there are many successful women in STEM leadership roles—while it may not come naturally to some of them, we must ask them to step up and show us all how they did it. The stories they tell may not be pretty—undoubtedly many of them had to learn how to thrive in an environment that did not encourage their success—but by talking openly about what they achieved, they will encourage others to follow in their path. Frequently in my role, when we talk to clients about their desire to fill a new senior-level position, there isn’t a great level of existing diversity, but there is a desire to change that. We don’t need to tell potential candidates a “perfect story,” but we do need to be honest and open, to present the challenges as well as the opportunities. There is little value in “pinkifying” STEM, an apparent trend in current promotional campaigns, when the reality is different. Don’t tell these young women that hundreds have gone before them if that isn’t the case. Instead tell them that they will be part of a “revolution” and while they may have a cultural fight on their hands, they can succeed if they grasp the challenge. My guess is that many will step up.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Moss Adams Wealth Advisors LLC



Seattle, Washington WEBSITE:


“Organizations with a significant number of women in leadership roles are known to make BETTER DECISIONS”

BUSINESS: Comprehensive wealth management REVENUES: $10 million EMPLOYEES: 37 TITLE: Partner, Moss Adams Wealth Advisors

› How has your education affected your career? Not only did an education provide me an opportunity to prove to myself what I am capable of, it allowed exploration of my own interests and passions so I could channel those into what field best suited my talents. ›


BA, University of Arizona; Certified Financial Planner FIRST JOB: Advisor at Moss

Adams Wealth Advisors

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Starting broad the first two years to develop a well-versed foundation. Push outside of one’s comfort zone. Learn about yourself first, and then get focused.


Live life passionately and fully. Maintain intellectual curiosity. Discover, learn, grow, give, and love. FAMILY:

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Perseverance, gumption, leadership, patience, teamwork, passion, vision, and commitment


ROWING UP IN THE ‘80s, ON THE HEELS OF THE SECOND-WAVE FEMINIST MOVEMENT, I ASSUMED THAT BY THE TIME I JOINED THE WORKFORCE, THERE WOULD BE GENDER EQUALITY IN EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP ROLES. Today, however, this is not the case. Women receive the majority of bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees, yet represent only 2.4 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs and 17 percent of elected government positions. Now is the time to capitalize on the strides made in education equality to accelerate the advancement of women into leadership. Organizations with a significant number of women in leadership roles are known to make better decisions and ultimately achieve greater financial success. Yet as Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, describes, we as women, have a tendency to underestimate our abilities, don’t negotiate for ourselves, and often attribute our success to factors other than our performance. We must move beyond these innate tendencies that deter women from leadership roles. I am passionate about this topic and have continued my education outside the classroom in

Married with an adorable three-year-old daughter

search of a solution. Here are four lessons I’ve learned: Have a sponsor. Five years ago I found a sponsor who supports me with her own influence as a leader. She is an incredible advocate who provides recognition and feedback needed to fuel my own ambition. Support each other. I’ve built a network of women who have the same goal in mind—to support and encourage each other. Close supportive relationships between women who are working through similar issues at work and at home will increase the number of women remaining in the workforce. Be dedicated to learning and growth. It has taken me a long time to recognize and harness my innate talents and to figure out where I need to grow. Leveraging my strengths and addressing my weaknesses through education, clearlyestablished goals, and action allows me to be accountable for my own development. Finally, support the next generation. I’ve done this by chairing a community initiative called InfluenceHer. We focus on educating girls about the importance of academic success, leadership, and health and wellness. Not only do we make a difference in the lives of girls, we encourage women of influence to join together to engage and empower the next generation. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Lockheed Martin Corporation


How has your education affected your career? The biggest impact on my career was when I switched my academic major from pre-med to business. It was life-changing as I had always envisioned becoming a doctor. A hard decision, but right for me. It put me on track for success doing something I truly love.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My high school science teacher; She was tough, set high expectations, and refused to let me say “I can’t.” She encouraged me to experiment, think creatively. She opened my imagination and convinced me I could succeed in any science discipline.


Bethesda, Maryland WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Global security and aerospace REVENUES: $46.5 billion EMPLOYEES: 123,000 TITLE:


HE U.S. AEROSPACE INDUSTRY HAS EVOLVED AMAZINGLY SINCE THE WRIGHT BROTHERS’ FIRST FLIGHT MORE THAN A CENTURY AGO. America’s aerospace prowess has yielded significant benefits in the areas of defense, jobs, and international commerce. Aerospace Industries Association reports there are about 3.53 million U.S. aerospace and defense industry jobs. The industry generated $324 billion in sales revenue in 2010, is the U.S.’s largest net exporter, and among the largest contributors to the nation’s gross exports. While the aerospace industry is robust, it faces real challenges. Other countries are quickly eclipsing U.S. aerospace technology, and a weak world economy is always a foe. As key members of the aerospace community, Lockheed Martin employees design and build some of the world’s most recognizable military aircraft, with many of these talented people having 40 or more years of experience manufacturing these flying machines. However, their average age is 55, and they soon will take their skills and expertise with them into retirement, significantly impacting our company, industry, and customers. Obviously, we need technically-educated, passionate employees to sustain the company and industry. Finding this next-generation work force, unfortunately, is a major challenge. Data show that American students lag behind international students in subjects like math and science. We are not graduating engineers at nearly the rates of countries like India and China. With education being the foundation of economic prosperity and national security, we need to change the U.S. education system to keep up with the aerospace and other technical industries’ demands. Education is not the sole province of educational institutions; industry must play an important role as well. Given the imperative of developing tomorrow’s aerospace workforce, there is no time to lose. Businesses must engage with schools in true partnerships. Companies can help guide curriculum improvements by sharing information with educators regarding emerging trends, industry practices and technologies, and skills and competencies needed from future employees. Direct involvement is important to the future and to youth as well. We must achieve one overarching goal: to inspire and equip today’s students to become tomorrow’s aerospace leaders.



September/October 2012

VP, LM Aeronautics Co. & General Manager, Marietta EDUCATION:

BA, MBA, Emory University; MA, Rutgers University FIRST JOB:

Bank teller MY PHILOSOPHY:

Save your emotions for family, friends. Bring your best to work every day. FAMILY:

Husband Eddie, daughter Chantel

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Kelly McNamara

Discover Financial Services

Corley “A college education is an investment in YOURSELF. College provides more than just a superior education.” › What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? American political thought ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? The Dean of Women at USC, Joan Schaeffer, supported me in all I wanted to do at USC. She taught me about the power of women helping women succeed.

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? When I leave the office, I try to do my best not to be distracted by my email inbox but rather to focus on my family. We take great vacations together that also help us reconnect as a family. I never miss a soccer game or singing performance of my daughter’s.


BELIEVE THAT BEING A LEADER IS MORE THAN A TITLE. IT’S SOMEONE WHO IS FAIR, COMMITTED, AND COMPASSIONATE. My job goes beyond just being responsible for the company’s legal and regulatory matters. It’s important to me to always put customers first by protecting consumers’ rights, being a responsible lender, and fostering fair standards and policies within the financial industry. And throughout my career, my education is the one thing that has affected everything I do. A college education is an investment in yourself. College provides more than just a superior education. It’s a chance to learn new skills and find new opportunities. As a political science major at USC, I learned to respect opposing perspectives and think analytically under pressure, things that I relied upon later in my career while leading the effort on a landmark lawsuit, which resulted in one of the largest antitrust settlements in history. I believe in the importance of advancing your education and helping employees achieve additional education. I started my career 30 years ago right after college, as an intern with the company. Through the company’s tuition reimbursement program I was able to pursue a law degree in the evening while also working full time. I have tried to encourage my employees to continue their education and provide the flexibility they require to do so. The law department recently partnered with a national nonprofit organization that promotes education for low-income students, with the end goal of acceptance into four-year colleges. Part of our sponsorship allows us to host students from a local high school at our offices. The opportunity provides these students with hands-on work experience that further promotes the benefits of an education. Even with the rising costs of tuition, a college education still remains one of the best investments a person can make. It’s key to new opportunities, fundamental to reaching your goals, and most importantly, an investment in yourself.

September/October 2012


Riverwoods, Illinois WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Financial services REVENUES:

7.1 billion EMPLOYEES:

11,650 TITLE:

Executive Vice President, General Counsel & Secretary EDUCATION: BA, University of

Southern California; JD, George Mason University FIRST JOB:

Government affairs and regulatory policy MY PHILOSOPHY:

Dream big. FAMILY: Husband, Monty

and daughter, Caroline



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner




Oakville, Ontario, Canada WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Automotive EMPLOYEES:

6,000 TITLE: President & CEO

Ford Motor Company of Canada, Limited

What does it take to succeed in your position? Strong business acumen and consistently demonstrating leadership behaviors that people respect and want to emulate. In addition, learn from people that are strong leaders; I have learned a lot from great bosses, mentors, peers, and dealers.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Early in my college days, I didn’t score well on a particular math exam. My professor told me he did not think I had the “grey matter” to pursue a math degree. It made me more determined than ever to prove him wrong, and I did.


BS, State University of New York; MBA, Ohio State University FIRST JOB:

Entry-level position at Ford in Marketing & Sales MY PHILOSOPHY:

Provide people with a clear vision and help them understand how their role allows them to contribute to achieving our business objectives. FAMILY: Married for 17 years

with a daughter


ODAY, GETTING AN EDUCATION IS THE PRICE OF ENTRY INTO THE WORKPLACE. Education has evolved over the last 25 years since I attended college. Today I am so pleased to see more women pursuing STEM college degrees that ultimately can be applied in a variety of fascinating industries. I believe that young women should be encouraged and inspired at an early age to embrace science and math. It starts with making these subjects interesting to young children. While science and math can be challenging subjects to learn, the value comes from learning and “connecting the dots” between theory and real world applications. Based on my experience with interns over the past few years, I am very impressed with their level of maturity and their understanding of real work expectations and relationships. Colleges are doing a much better job preparing graduates to leverage technology tools. I am also very impressed with their presentation skills and ability to work in teams. Today, we are operating in a global business environment. Therefore, curriculums should link traditional academic subjects with how to compete in a global economy. Importantly, this includes understanding and embracing diversity as it relates to various cultures around the world. College degrees that provide practical business applications coupled with building strong leadership attributes will provide a much richer learning experience for students, which is critical to today’s workforce. My advice to young women is obtaining a college or higher-level education is important. Explore a number of different subjects to find what interests you the most. I started out in engineering, but found math far more exciting. Find out what you are most passionate about and look for interests that you really enjoy. Once you enter the professional world and you land on a career or profession you love, you will add many more years of happiness to your life. Look for people that can help and guide you. Don’t limit yourself to the possibilities. I have had wonderful mentors over the years and I am very grateful for all they taught me. And keep your priorities straight: family first, work second.

“College degrees that provide practical business applications coupled with building strong leadership attributes will provide a much richer learning experience for students, which is CRITICAL to today’s workforce.” 70


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Jingrong Jean

Pfizer Inc.



LTHOUGH MUCH HAS BEEN SAID ABOUT THE UNDERREPRESENTATION OF WOMEN IN PROFESSIONAL SCIENTIFIC FIELDS IN THE UNITED STATES, FOR ME THERE WAS NEVER A QUESTION THAT I WOULD WORK IN THE SCIENCES. I consider myself very fortunate, though. From the time I was a young girl, studying in China, my love for science was encouraged by my teachers. That was especially true during my high school years, a time in which many Chinese students decide which direction their studies will take. For all students, no matter where in the world they live, high school should be a time of discovery—a time to learn what they’re good at and where their interests lie. If we want to do a better job attracting women to scientific fields, I think we need to focus not on the industry or on those making hiring decisions. Instead, it’s important to go back to the formative high school years. I believe that just as many girls as boys are interested in science. But unless that interest is nurtured, it’s not going to flourish. High school science teachers have an incredible responsibility to inspire young teenagers’ curiosity and interest in science. Their teaching styles, as well as their attitudes, can be the turning point for any student, but especially for girls. The teachers I had in high school not only encouraged my passion for science, they helped point me in the right direction. After completing my high school and undergraduate studies in China, I came to the U.S. for my post-graduate education. Having had the unique personal experience of studying in such very different countries and cultures, I can tell you this about the U.S.—it is the capital of innovation and novel ideas. When I moved to this country, I learned how to use my scientific knowledge in order to solve problems. I found a practical application for my love of organic chemistry. I had professors who gave me the space to do things on my own and explore entirely new ways of solving difficult problems. My interest in life sciences led me to the pharmaceutical industry, where advanced chemistry and biology are used to create medicines that help people. I had found my calling. For the U.S. to continue to be a true leader in innovation, it’s important to understand something I learned from my experience—education is the seed that generates innovative thinking. We need to give science, and young girls, the respect they deserve. If we invest in today’s female high school students, and encourage and support their scientific pursuits, I truly believe we will all be better off for it. September/October 2012

› How has your education affected your career? My strong scientific education fully prepared me for the field of innovative medicine development. › What does it take to succeed in your position? Knowledge and the passion to discover new medicines for unmet medical needs ›

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Discover your career interest and passion as early as possible and then work hard on your education, which will become the foundation for success.



Biopharmaceutical REVENUES:

$67 billion EMPLOYEES:

100,000 TITLE:

Associate Research Fellow EDUCATION:

PhD, The Ohio State University FIRST JOB:

Medicinal Chemist, Glycomed, Inc. MY PHILOSOPHY:

Hard work will make a difference. FAMILY:

Husband and two daughters



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


OfficeMax Inc.





ECHNOLOGY IS A WONDERFUL THING, ISN’T IT? We are connected wherever we are in the world. One can find an answer for just about anything with a few simple keystrokes. Technology evolves at a staggering pace, often outpacing changes in school curricula. This creates gaps in our education system that can leave students unprepared for the challenges of college and the workplace. Some believe that schools should focus on building more specific technology curriculum to ensure that students are well prepared for their entry into the workforce. I am not one of them. Technology will continue to evolve at a rate that may outpace the ability of schools to create curricular materials that educate for it. Children today are exposed to technology almost as soon as they exit the womb. For today’s children, technology is as much a part of their life as family dinners were to earlier generations. Children are savvy enough to figure out how to use technological advances as the need arises. Schools would be better served by finding ways to have students use technology in project-based lessons with real life applications, and to shift the focus of educational outcomes on other skills that are essential for workplace success. The internet is a powerful source of data. Yet how does one know if the data makes sense in the context of a specific business challenge? Critical thinking skills, including curiosity, logic, and common sense are often overlooked, yet are essential for actually using the vast volume of information gained through technology. Organization and prioritization skills are required for workplace success. In the world of endless data, we sometimes lose sight of where to start and where to spend our time. Effective organization and prioritization are essential skills that enable productivity and create the biggest impact on business results. Finally, building relationships is something that a computer just can’t do. Encouraging students to work with others, fostering teamwork, and teaching them when to walk away from email and have a face-to-face discussion are important skills to those students becoming successful business leaders. Those students who are comfortable with technology and are also strong critical thinkers, organized, and able to build relationships at work are the ones who will succeed in the workplace. Educators not only need to build competency in technology, but also teach these other skills to ensure students are prepared for professional success.




Naperville, Illinois

September/October 2012

Office products distribution REVENUES:

$7.1 billion EMPLOYEES:

29,000 TITLE:

Senior Vice President, Merchandising EDUCATION:

BS, University of Wisconsin FIRST JOB:

Restaurant hostess MY PHILOSOPHY:

I often say, “It's my choice to be here, and I'm going to make it a good day.” It's very empowering. FAMILY:

Husband Ed, son Nathan

› How has your education affected your career? Immensely. Getting an education has inspired a lifetime of learning, and this endless curiosity keeps me sharp in my career, as well as inspires new experiences outside of the workplace. › What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Take some courses that don’t specifically apply to your declared major. Become a curious student who loves the learning process. Cultivating this skill now is really important. › What advice would you give younger women about their education? Expose yourself to things you don’t know anything about, or think you’re not going to like. You never know. Take time to figure out what gives you a sense of purpose.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner




Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto

“Investing in BUSINESS education is one of the most

important steps a woman can take to advance her career.”

BELIEVE THAT INVESTING IN BUSINESS EDUCATION IS ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT STEPS A WOMAN CAN TAKE TO ADVANCE HER CAREER. When I joined the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto, it struck me that MBA programs were achieving only half of the female enrollment seen by other graduate programs such as law and medicine. And no surprise, this leads to fewer women in senior leadership roles in business. In response, I co-created the first Initiative for Women in Business at a Canadian business school to reduce the barriers that impede women’s advancement. Some examples include: Barrier 1: Cultural Norms North American culture values the “stay-at-home-mom” concept, where the woman sacrifices her career advancement for the family good. Even for women returning to the workforce after having a baby, there is a financial “motherhood gap” HEADQUARTERS: which gets bigger with every Toronto, Canada maternity leave they take. WEBSITE: Solution: Programs, such as our Back to BUSINESS: Work program, help Higher education bridge the gap for women who have EMPLOYEES: 346 taken an absence from TITLE: Associate Dean, the workplace and Executive Degree Programs/ Executive Director, Initiative for Women in Business/Professor of Strategic Management EDUCATION:

Dipl. Vw., Dipl. Inf.wiss., PhD, University of Konstanz, Germany FIRST JOB:

Research Assistant MY PHILOSOPHY:

Enjoy life—it is too short. FAMILY:

Married with two kids

offer free childcare for participants. Barrier 2: Industry Norms Some of the most coveted jobs for MBA students are in finance and consulting, which are known for “extreme jobs” (characterized by high compensation for long working hours). These jobs can be very satisfying, if that is where your ambitions lie, but for women with families it can be difficult to advance at the same pace as men. Solution: The Women Initiative consults with companies on gender issues and the benefits of flexible working arrangements for all employees to help create a smoother path forward for women in business. Barrier 3: Stereotypes and Biases Of all barriers, this is the most pervasive and most difficult to overcome. The perceptions we carry about the abilities and potential of men and women ultimately create invisible barriers to women’s advancement in business. Solution: Understanding and being honest with ourselves about the biases we each carry can help us recognize when they are standing in the way of a decision that is best for our company. At Rotman, we host speakers and workshops that address unconscious biases so we can change the way leaders identify high potential employees. I believe that true advancement for women can only be achieved by tackling these barriers simultaneously, and that this will create positive change in the business landscape for men and women alike.

› How has your education affected your career? My PhD opened doors to be hired by a management consulting firm, McKinsey & Co., which turned out to be another terrific learning opportunity. ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My Latin teacher in high school motivated me to think broadly about society, and showed how empathy and tolerance are important factors to humanity.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? I believe in work/ home integration rather than the ever-elusive balance! Having domestic help and technology that allows us to check in with work while we are with our family helps us find better integration. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner HEADQUARTERS:

Nashville, Tennessee WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Healthcare services REVENUES: $29.68 billion

Jana J.



“Efforts in the classroom and extracurricular activities are helping to remove gender bias BARRIERS.”

EMPLOYEES: 199,000 TITLE: Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications/ Marketing Services EDUCATION:

BA, Sweet Briar College; JD, Wake Forest University School of Law FIRST JOB:

Summer clerk in a law firm MY PHILOSOPHY:

Don’t tell me all the reasons I can’t—help me find a way I can. FAMILY:

Husband, Ansel, and daughter, Skylar


Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My freshman English professor in college suggested that my work early in the semester qualified me to skip “Baby Lit.” Whereas he saw this as an opportunity to challenge myself, I viewed his review as a chance to score an easy A. He didn’t argue, simply inquired whether I planned to pursue the “just good enough” approach solely in academics, or if I intended to apply it to my life in general. I took a more advanced class, earned an A-, and made a practice of taking at least one course each semester that intimidated me. I still try to tackle something—a project, skill, or volunteer activity—every year that I find daunting. There is no better formula for growth.

’LL NEVER FORGET THE DAY MY HIGH SCHOOL ALGEBRA TEACHER TOLD THE GIRLS IN MY MATH CLASS NOT TO SIGN UP FOR LOGIC OR STATISTICS WHEN WE GOT TO COLLEGE, BECAUSE “FEMALE MINDS DON’T WORK THAT WAY.” Although the comment made me angry, others took him at his word. One friend in particular who had planned to be a math major worried if she ignored our teacher’s admonition, she might be signing up for failure. Although that event took place over 30 years ago, its message is as real today as it was then: gender bias begins early and can breed fear and ignorance. The story illustrates why barriers to engage women in the fields of STEM exist. These areas of endeavor are critical to the continued advancement of the American economy, yet a diversion of this nature may be causing some of our best and brightest to pursue other career paths. In a recent study entitled Why So Few? the American Association of University Women (AAUW) explores why females are underrepresented in STEM areas. The table of contents offers some insight: chapters like “Stereotypes” “Beliefs About Intelligence” and “Implicit and Workplace



September/October 2012

Bias” paint an ominous picture. It would appear the demons we faced three decades ago persist to this day. There are reasons to be optimistic, however. In Nashville, where I reside, the public school system has developed STEM “academies.” These encourage boys and girls in middle and high school to pursue studies in science, math, and technology based on their individual interests. There is a special focus on engineering for girls. Organizations such as the Girl Scouts and Nashville’s Adventure Science Center offer science activities targeted specifically to girls, and work collaboratively with the academies on some efforts. Until we can erase the gender bias that resides among leaders and influencers in our society, some girls and women could continue to make choices based on limitations imposed by others. Efforts in the classroom and extracurricular organizations can help to remove these barriers, and not every female is susceptible to negative influences. Remember the girls in my math class? While some may have been discouraged, others continued to pursue their love of math and science. One of my old pals majored in aerospace engineering, and, although we have lost touch, I hope she realized her dream to become a rocket scientist.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Mary P.


Davis “We all must be educators and ENCOURAGE the development of our STEM workforce.”


HERE HAVE BEEN MANY STUDIES CONCLUDING THAT WOMEN ARE UNDERREPRESENTED BOTH IN STEM JOBS AND STEM UNDERGRADUATE DEGREES OVER THE LAST DECADE. This may be attributable to a variety of factors. These may include different choices men and women typically make in response to incentives in STEM education and STEM employment. For example, STEM career paths may be less accommodating to people cycling in and out of the workforce to raise a family, or it may be because there are relatively few female STEM role models. I believe one of the most important factors is the effect of strong gender stereotypes that influence society at a young age, which discourages women from pursuing STEM education and STEM jobs. The stereotype that boys are better than girls in math and science still negatively affects the performance of girls in these fields. Gender differences in self-confidence in STEM subjects starts in middle school and increases thereafter, with girls being less confident in their math and science abilities. The stereotype where women stay home with the children while the men work and “bring home the bacon” influenced decisions on my educational path and work-related decisions. In today’s economy, choices are limited and a solid education is critical. An education in a STEM field provides a solid road to success. Therefore, a good way to address this gap is to put an end to stereotypes. We can begin in our homes, carry over in educational institutions, and finally in the workplace. We all must be educators and encourage the development of our STEM workforce. I am proud to say our president is a good example. The Obama Administration launched a STEM education initiative to foster a passion for these subjects among America’s students of all ages, recognizing the value to the United States. These types of activities help to educate society that everyone is equal and everyone has a right to pursue their dreams. At CSC, our STEM workforce is crucial to our company’s innovative capacity and global competitiveness.

September/October 2012

What does it take to succeed in your position? Building solid trusted relationships are key in the business world, whether it is directly with a client, internally in the organization, or with vendor partners. People need to feel confident working with you.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Strive to earn advanced degrees and certifications; however, it is not all about traditional education. Join professional organizations like Women in Technology and become active in the community by joining charitable organizations or specific communities of interest such as the disability community to continuously broaden your network. I am currently on the Board of Directors for American Association for People with Disabilities (AAPD).


Falls Church, Virginia WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Technology REVENUES: $15.9 billion EMPLOYEES: 98,000 TITLE: Vice President, IT Infrastructure Solutions; North American Public Sector EDUCATION: University of

California, Irvine; University of Phoenix Courses FIRST JOB: Department of

Army, Management Support Office at the Pentagon MY PHILOSOPHY: Education

and continuous learning is a lifelong investment in yourself that builds the foundation to achieve your goals. FAMILY: Married to my hus-

band of 31 years, Tom, and I have three adult children living across the U.S.



Š 2012 Lockheed Martin Corporation



At Lockheed Martin, diversity is more than a goal. It’s a necessity. When facing down the most important projects in the world, every idea counts. Every viewpoint matters. Diversity not only makes our team more agile, it provides the energy and new perspectives that lead to original solutions.

Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Irene M. Esteves,Time Warner Cable • LIsa M. DeFrancesco, Watson Pharmaceuticals • Flavia Faugeres, Burger King Worldwide, Inc. • Gail Edgar, W.W. Grainger, Inc. Gerri Elliott, Juniper Networks • Deborah K. Edwards, Elford, Inc. • Christina Diaz-Malone, Freddie Mac • Carol Hyland Forsyte, Motorola Mobility Deborah L. DeHaas, Deloitte LLP • Gudbjorg Edda Eggertsdottir, Actavis Group hf • Linda D. Forte, Comerica Bank • Dina Dwyer-Owens, The Dwyer Group




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Lisa M.

Watson Pharmaceuticals



UCH HAS BEEN WRITTEN REGARDING THE DEBATE ABOUT THE VALUE OF TECHNOLOGY IN THE CLASSROOM, AND WHETHER OUR SCHOOL SYSTEMS ARE KEEPING PACE WITH TECHNOLOGICAL ADVANCES AND ADAPTING EDUCATIONAL PROCESSES TO THESE ADVANCES. I would argue that given the pace of the technological evolution of the past few decades, the debate over the application of technological development in the classroom overshadows a much more fundamental issue: how do we teach children of all ages to think? According to a 2010 Fortune article, the human brain has approximately 100 billion neurons. Although not precisely an apples-to-apples comparison, an iPod contains more than 256 billion transistors, the tiny device that provides the computing power to support its capabilities. When one considers that just 33 years ago I would have been more than a trendsetter with the first Sony Walkman cassette player attached to my belt, or the first MP3 player slightly more than a HEADQUARTERS: decade ago, it becomes clear that keeping up with technology, particularly in the classroom, is Parsippany, New Jersey next to impossible. WEBSITE: Today, it is highly likely, even in extraordinarily well-funded and advanced school systems, that the students have more technology in their backpacks than the classroom BUSINESS: Pharmaceuticals can hope to have. So, given this reality, what is the real challenge in an educational sysREVENUES: $4.6 billion tem that can never hope to have the latest and greatest gadgets? I believe the challenge is to ensure that the generations of future business leaders EMPLOYEES: 6,686 understand how to think. Technology is a tool. Just as our ancestors moved from hunting and gathering to farming to manufacturing, and adapted to all the technology that TITLE: VP, Global Investor Relations enabled this evolution, so we must train the leaders of tomorrow to adapt by focusing on the thinking behind the tools that drive today’s business world. EDUCATION: The web, computer, and iPad are tools. How to use those tools is the critical chalBS, Seton Hall University lenge. But more than teaching which button the student must push to get the answer, FIRST JOB: Ladenburg it is incumbent on the educational system to teach the why and what for in seeking an Thalmann & Co. Inc. answer in the first place. In a fast-paced business environment, the tools of technology cannot replace a reaMY PHILOSOPHY: Work hard and have the confidence soned understanding of the environment, history, culture, and opportunities involved that you can accomplish in responding to business challenges. Successful business people understand the imporanything. There is nothing tance of how to ask the question, respond to a business challenge, and then harness the too difficult that if you power of technology to reach a decision point. focus properly you cannot achieve, but you While it is important for schools to teach technology, they must harness the 100 have to jump right in and billion neurons in the student’s head, to think, ask, wonder, and create. Technology is never look back. ever-changing, but it is limited by its inherent “dumbness.” The human mind is only FAMILY: I have a wonderful limited by its infinite capacity for wonder and amazement, and I believe that our eduhusband and two beautiful cational system needs to promote the development of this muscle, and imbue in stuchildren, James and Juliana dents the recognition that just as the machine aided manual labor, technology aids the mental labor of our increasingly information society and business culture.



September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Deborah L. ›

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? I am fortunate to have worked for two great organizations that have consistently provided me with outstanding opportunities to take on challenging roles and accelerate my career. I have benefited from the sponsorship of both men and women inside and outside of my organization, however early in my career the majority of my sponsors were men. I believe it is critical for our leaders today, men and women alike, to help our women and minorities build diverse networks, create opportunities, and define paths that will help them grow and develop as leaders.



Audit and enterprise risk services, consulting, tax, and financial advisory REVENUES: $11.94 billion EMPLOYEES: 51,000 TITLE: Vice Chairman, Central Region Managing Partner, and Chief Inclusion Officer for Deloitte LLP EDUCATION:

BS, Duke University FIRST JOB:

Joined Arthur Andersen as an Audit staff consultant MY PHILOSOPHY: Be true to

yourself; establish and live by a core set of values. FAMILY: I am married to my

husband of 25 years and am the mother of three boys.

Deloitte LLP



ESPITE THE FACT THAT DEGREES OF ALL LEVELS—BACHELOR’S, MASTER’S, DOCTORATE—ARE MORE OFTEN EARNED BY WOMEN THAN MEN, WOMEN CONTINUE TO LAG BEHIND MEN IN EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP POSITIONS, BOARD MEMBERSHIP, AND COMPENSATION ONCE THEY ENTER THE WORKFORCE. It’s a conundrum considering that, according to The Gender Dividend, by Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltd., a full integration of women in both the workplace and the marketplace can yield significant return. So why is there still a lag in number of executive positions, board memberships, and equitable salary compensation for women? Investing in women must be taken out of the realm of ideology and into the executive suite, where decisions are made. Once women complete their education and begin working, we need to do more to consistently move them into leadership roles. And this is only going to grow more urgent—all demographic data suggests that women are among the nation’s fastest growing workforce and consumer base. What can be done to help women advance in the workplace in a way that is consistent with their academic track record? Actions and initiatives like sponsorship programs, executive accountability, and flexible work policies are needed to address key challenges facing the advancement of women. Sponsors are senior leaders who speak up about and promote talented women. It is important that high-performing women are connected to people who are in a position of power, and whose influence and recommendation can ultimately lead to promotion and advancement. Senior leaders can undergo training to help them better understand what sponsorship is, how to address the needs of the women they are sponsoring, and how to provide effective feedback to people with backgrounds different from theirs. Moreover, when sponsors are held accountable for their rising leader’s success—whether by tracking metrics or by tying to compensation— results can skyrocket. Additionally, initiatives that help women (and men) find the right flexibility are extremely powerful. That’s because flexibility is more than policy— it’s the ability for workers to customize their own career paths based on professional and personal commitments over time. Companies should become more responsive and flexible to allow employees to determine what works best for them, while still maintaining highquality performance. In the end, it takes intentional commitment and accountability throughout an organization to build an inclusive culture where everyone can thrive and become leaders. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner



McLean, Virginia WEBSITE:

Freddie Mac



Mortgages and housing

“The old adage that education is KEY TO YOUR


FUTURE is just as true in the world of housing and homeownership.”

5,000 TITLE: Vice President of Outreach, Diversity and Inclusion EDUCATION:

BA, LadyCliff College in New York; Certificate, Tuck Leadership School at Dartmouth FIRST JOB:

Simplicity Patterns Company in NYC MY PHILOSOPHY:

Focus on making the best of every opportunity. FAMILY:

Husband, Judson Malone; two children: Javier and Melania; two grandchildren

› How has your education affected your career? A real door opener; it exposed me to a different environment, types of people, and perspectives. ›

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Recognizing that there are no “super women,” lean on your own expectations, put a value on your time, and choose a level of tolerance for multitasking

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Focus on making the best of your education and getting your money’s worth



HEN I LEFT BROOKLYN TO START COLLEGE JUST 50 MILES AWAY IN UPSTATE NEW YORK, IT MIGHT AS WELL HAVE BEEN A DIFFERENT WORLD. The move and my college experience created a wealth of new opportunities for me. I met—and learned from—people outside my circle and culture, who navigated life in such different ways. The foundation that a strong education offers helps you create opportunities that last a lifetime. In my professional life, I try to bring some of these same opportunities to the communities we serve. In many respects, working in the housing industry to provide financial education reminds me of my college experience and the new horizons it represented. We help open doors in the community by teaching financial literacy, so that families can prepare to become successful homeowners. We interact and partner with a broad range of groups serving African Americans, Latinos, Asians, and underserved populations. The old adage that education is key to your future is just as true in the world of housing and homeownership. Through partnerships with community organizations and lenders, we’ve developed a financial education curriculum for families across the nation to increase housing opportunities for underserved households and communities. They help people understand, obtain, and maintain good credit—the key to a successful financial future. Over the years, I’ve continued to work first-hand with prospective homebuyers, volunteering as a bilingual homebuyer education instructor for NeighborWorks America. Employees also partner with local nonprofits as volunteers teaching financial classes to young people. It’s an opportunity to learn, grow, and step outside of one’s environment. It’s also a compelling reminder of the important facets of education and how key financial education is to family stability, wealth building, and a better future.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner HEADQUARTERS:

Waco, Texas



Home-service franchises REVENUES:

$44.2 million


“Your best education is through hands-on experience and by always considering yourself a STUDENT.”



Baylor University; licensed real estate agent; certified franchise executive FIRST JOB:

Pumping gas at a car wash MY PHILOSOPHY:

Be clear in what you value in life. FAMILY:

Three brothers and two sisters, married with two kids


The Dwyer Group

URING THE SAVINGS AND LOAN CRISIS OF THE 1980s, I WAS A PROPERTY MANAGER FOR SEVERAL OF MY FATHER’S PROPERTIES WHEN HE TOLD ME HE WOULD NOT BE ABLE TO MAKE THE MORTGAGE PAYMENTS ON ONE APARTMENT BUILDING. In my twenties at the time, I was mortified when he requested I ask the bank for a 50 percent forgiveness of the loan. To my surprise, the bank agreed to forgive 40 percent of the debt because of how I handled the situation. It’s gritty, uncomfortable moments like those that I point to as my pivotal education, rather than classroom time. My father was determined to teach me leadership and entrepreneurship from a young age—whether through motivational books or having me fill in for him on international business trips. He taught me to dream big, set goals, and then achieve them. As chairwoman and CEO of The Dwyer Group, parent company of seven home-service companies, one of my great pleasures has been to mentor women into roles as franchise owners and service professionals in male-dominated trade industries—appliance repair, electrical, etc. Earlier this year,

› How has your education affected your career? I was working full-time at the same time that I attended college. In my mind, education is so much more than school. Until you go through the pain—and have the courage—to put your knowledge into practice, you don’t really learn it. › What does it take to succeed in your position? It takes a solid belief system, a strong team, healthy habits, and courage. ›

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? My big ‘aha’ moment was hiring a housekeeper! I balance by getting help in areas like housework and bookkeeping where I don’t need to be investing my time. Count on your personal and professional teams to back you up. My faith is my personal foundation for success which helps me keep the different areas of my life in perspective.

I launched a Women in the Trades program to help educate women on their opportunities in this field and assist them with needed training. So many women have excellent customer service and technical skills for this field, but lack resources and role models. As a young CEO, I had to overcome similar obstacles. After I was named acting CEO, a group of plumbing franchise owners took a straw poll and voted against me. I met with them personally to address their concerns and asked them to give me six months to prove my competence, otherwise I would be the first to step down. Don’t play the victim; if you know your field, if you’ve worked hard and have studied hard, then prove to everyone that you can succeed. Your best education is through handson experience and by always considering yourself a student. Seek out an internship, a mentor, or even a job in the area where you want to work, even if no one else is doing it. My education as an executive came primarily from the strong team I built around me. Never—never—be afraid to surround yourself with people smarter than you. If I had been too shy to ask those more experienced than me for advice, then I would never be where I am today. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


W.W. Grainger, Inc.


Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? There are always going to be people in your life that you admire or aspire to be like. The real value is understanding what it is about these individuals that creates the impact they have on you and convert that into where you want to go and what you want to do with your life.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? The best investment you can make is in yourself. Not just from an employment opportunity perspective, but from a personal growth, development, and enrichment perspective as well.


S A FIRST-GENERATION COLLEGE GRADUATE, I’VE OBSERVED MANY OF LIFE’S STRUGGLES AND LIMITED OPPORTUNITIES EXPERIENCED BY MY GRANDPARENTS, PARENTS, AND SIBLINGS. And I’ve personally experienced them, albeit temporarily. Therefore, I cannot stress enough the magnitude of the value of having a college education. I always did well in school, but did not go to college immediately after completing high school. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to go; it was because the pursuit of a college education was foreign to my family. It only took one “not qualified due to level of education” rejection notice to drag me into reality, and fast. It was a long and tough road, but the opportunities and rewards my college education afforded me are immeasurable. As for the high cost of education, there are smart financial ways to go about obtaining a quality education. I completed almost two full years of credit courses at a community college at a much lower cost than a traditional four-year university. However, I worked closely with the counseling support provided by both the community college and university to assure that what I was taking fit within my overall education plan. I was expected to hold a high grade point average and I can assure you that the amount of effort you put in will determine what you get out. I lived at home, which eliminated housing costs, and I spent endless hours applying for and receiving various grants. As potential college students grapple with the rising cost of higher education and tight labor market, I encourage them to think about the return on investment (ROI), not in the short term (today), but in terms of a lifelong investment strategy. Go beyond thinking that the ROI of a college education is limited to providing employment opportunities and include the “dividends” or returns that are paid over and over again: Countless experiences to learn from, exposure to diversity and differing points of view, opportunities to challenge yourself, building your knowledge base and confidence, developing a network of friends that will support you throughout life, and providing the chance to discover your passions. My words of wisdom: The best investment you can make is in yourself, and always be thinking about what is yet to come. The best jobs of tomorrow do not exist today.

“...I cannot stress enough the MAGNITUDE of the value of having a college education.” 82


September/October 2012


Lake Forest, Illinois WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Maintenance, repair, and operating products REVENUES: $8.1 billion EMPLOYEES: 21,000 TITLE: Vice President, Corporate Facilities Services EDUCATION:

BS, Northwestern University; MBA, University of Chicago FIRST JOB: Working in a

small accounting office crunching numbers MY PHILOSOPHY:

Anything is possible as long as you believe in yourself. FAMILY: My entire family is

my true source of inspiration and drive, from my parents, to my five siblings, to my husband and children.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Deborah K.

Elford, Inc.



Columbus, Ohio WEBSITE:

“UNDERSTANDING the power and value of



Construction management and general contracting

education has led me to be a mentor to both my children and employees.”


$163 million

HAVE ALWAYS HAD A LOVE FOR LEARNING. For many years of my life I took classes that interested me, anything from piano to philosophy. When I began raising my five children, I realized in order to impress upon them the value of education I needed to compile all of those random classes I was taking into an actual degree program. Not surprisingly, my family was fully supportive of my decision to earn my degree. My passion for learning opened doors for me that I could not have imagined. I started with Elford, Inc. as a field administrative assistant, but I always had a persistent yearning to know what my coworkers and colleagues did in their daily jobs. Fortunately I had two wonderful mentors who took me under their wings; they showed me all aspects of the construction industry and challenged me to learn more. One mentor taught me how to estimate construction projects and that women can be strong forces in the construction industry while my other mentor, a field superintendent, taught me the field aspect of construction. Under their tutelage I quickly learned so much more than I could have in my administrative role; every day I was a sponge soaking in information. The hands-on education and experience I received, coupled with my college courses, made the sky the limit as to what I could and wanted to accomplish. There were challenges along the way; construction was and is a male-dominated industry and I was a young woman knocking at the gates. My mentor taught me to just keep learning and striving to be the best I can be. Twenty-four years later with a bachelor’s degree and title of vice president of Estimating and Preconstruction, I can honestly say I did just that. My education, life experiences, confidence, and tenacity are what opened doors to my successful career. My current role is fast-paced and high-tension but my education and past experiences enable me to cope with different stressors in productive ways. Understanding the power and value of education has led me to be a mentor to both my children and employees. I encourage them to value education and strive for advanced degrees. My advice to people today, especially young women, is to keep learning, because knowledge keeps you innovative and youthful, helps invoke empathy, and most importantly, keeps you grounded. September/October 2012


238 TITLE:

Vice President of Estimating and Preconstruction EDUCATION:

Wittenberg University FIRST JOB:

Working as a drive-thru cashier at Rax Roast Beef MY PHILOSOPHY:

I believe in the power of teams. FAMILY:

Husband and five children

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Valuing others and belief in achieving the impossible ›

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I made the decision early on that I would work whatever hours I needed to during the week, but the weekends were exclusively for my family.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Never stop learning and go for advanced degrees! Encourage other women that you meet because “having light we pass it on to others.”



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Gudbjorg Edda

Actavis Group hf

Eggertsdottir “More needs to be done to create a decent

we have equality. If you look at Actavis in Iceland, you’ll see a workforce that is 60 percent female and a management ratio at an equal level. Obviously that’s encouraging, but we still have some way to go. I think evolution is a lengthy process. Forty years ago there were less women studying for higher qualifications than men. It has taken time for that gap to close and I believe the gap between men and women in leadership roles will diminish accordingly in the future. In the meantime, there are things we can do. In Iceland, for example, new legislation coming into effect next year will require a minimum of 40 percent of each gender to be represented at board level, an area which seems to be the most conservative in terms of change. More needs to be done to create a decent infrastructure that will make it possible to pursue a career and have a family. Investing in affordable childcare is one issue, and yet there are many other initiatives needed. The Nordic countries have some of the best levels of parental leave, for example, offering the choice for both mothers and fathers to take time out to nurture their families. It is really about embracing diversity, and hopefully Actavis and other global companies with a heritage of fairness and equality can help to influence that change.

infrastructure that will make it possible to PURSUE a career and have a family.”


WAS THE FIRST PERSON IN MY FAMILY TO GO TO UNIVERSITY. My home country, Iceland, is very small in terms of population and in those days to achieve a master’s in pharmacy one had to go abroad. However, I returned with my degree and took up my first job as a pharmacist with a local wholesaler. Some 30 years on, I still love my work and am proud to head up strategic projects for Actavis. Here in Iceland, as with many of the Nordic countries, it is very much the norm for women to go to work. For centuries, women have played an equal role in terms of working the land and building the economy, partly from necessity and also HEADQUARTERS: Zug, Switzerland because it is ingrained in our culture. If you look at our WEBSITE: parliament, where 40 percent of the members BUSINESS: are women, and local Pharmaceuticals government, where the percentage is even REVENUES: €1.8 billion higher, you could say EMPLOYEES: 10,000

TITLE: President Iceland, Strategic Projects, Avtavis President of the European Generic Medicines Association (EGA)

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Leadership skills, integrity, and a good knowledge of the generics business

EDUCATION: MS, University of

Copenhagen, Denmark

› Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? At 17, my biology teacher pointed me in the direction of pharmacy, as I was interested in both chemistry and medicine, both of which play an important role in pharmacy studies.

FIRST JOB: Worker in a fish

industry plant MY PHILOSOPHY:

You can achieve anything you want, if you only put your mind to it.


Husband and two adult sons



What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Although I haven’t yet taken one myself, I think that many people benefit from taking MBA courses.

September/October 2012

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? Not easy! When my boys were small, I worked limited overtime and spent as much time as possible with my family. Outside work, I spend almost all my time with the family.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Juniper Networks



YOUNG WOMAN ALONE IN HER CAR GETS INTO AN ACCIDENT. Powered by a high-performance network, her cell phone responds to the impact, contacts emergency services, then transmits her medical records, thus ensuring her rare blood type is waiting for her at the closest hospital. This scenario is from a dramatic video we showed at Juniper Networks’ partner conference in mid-January. It demonstrates the potential of networking to save a life. Two weeks later, three young women from North Carolina—Ada, Katrina, and Greeshma—took part in the White House Science Fair. They demonstrated a smartphone app that works with a Bluetooth-enabled heart rate monitor to notify contacts in the event of a medical emergency. I hope these remarkable young women keep innovating and go onto STEM-related careers where their ingenuity is rewarded. Sadly, many do not. As a board advisor for Catalyst, I have been involved in several initiatives to increase the number of women in STEM careers. Studies show that girls lose interest in math and science during middle school. However, a 2012 report from the Girl Scout Research Institute offers encouraging data about the high-level of interest girls have in STEM-related activities into high school. Their findings include: • Three quarters of high school girls are interested in the subjects of STEM. • Girls are interested in the process of learning, asking questions, and problem solving. • Through their careers: – 88% of girls want to help people – 90% want to make a difference in the world – 87% want to make a lot of money – 81% want to collaborate and work with others From my career in technology, I’ve seen that all of the above can be achieved through STEM. With greater exposure, girls can increase their understanding of what a STEM career can offer. As one participant in the study said, “Everyone knows about teachers as a career, but not everyone our age really thinks about engineering.” As professionals, we can help re-frame the choices, helping girls see that their career aspirations—designing technologies, working collaboratively, solving problems, and helping others—are at the heart of STEM professions. Organizations like Catalyst have ideas on how to do this. Our involvement is critical to nurturing the next generation of young women who will use science, technology, engineering and math to solve important issues facing our communities and perhaps even save lives.


Sunnyvale, California WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

High-performance networking equipment REVENUES:

$4.4 billion EMPLOYEES:

9,500 TITLE:

EVP, Chief Sales Officer EDUCATION:

BA, New York University FIRST JOB:

Sales representative at IBM MY PHILOSOPHY:

Start with principles and keep those as your true north. FAMILY:

Married 27 years with two children

› How has your education affected your career? I’ve always been interested in global affairs, and my degree trained me to think across international boundaries. › What does it take to succeed in your position? An ability to communicate, motivate, coach, and know the difference between having an attention to detail and micro-managing ›

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? In 32 years in technology, I’ve never once been in a situation where I felt I was disadvantaged or discriminated because I am a woman. It’s been an advantage for me in my profession, as I believe women have a better blend of IQ and EQ. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Irene M.

Time Warner Cable



New York City WEBSITE:

“Learning was considered a personal responsibility and as IMPORTANT as my parents’ jobs were to the household.”


Telecommunications REVENUES: $19.7 billion EMPLOYEES: 50,000 TITLE:

Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer › Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? While I assume I have been both helped and hurt by being a woman of Puerto Rican descent in business, I never focus on it. I focus on what I can control, which is more about my performance, the leadership of my team, and my impact on others. ›


BBA, the University of Michigan; MBA, J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University. FIRST JOB: Telephone

interviewer for my mother’s marketing research office

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Stretch to get into the best school possible. Pay attention to success of their job placement office. Begin with the end in mind (what will position you best for the job market you will graduate into). Focus your course work on your career interests, but don’t forget to also get a general education. It makes life more interesting.


Work hard. Play harder. FAMILY:

Married; one grown son


Y PARENTS WERE VERY FOCUSED ON THE POWER OF EDUCATION IN SHAPING THE LIVES OF THEIR SIX CHILDREN. While I was the fifth child in the family and both parents worked outside the home, Mom and Dad still found time to help me understand physics and edit my essays. There wasn’t much focus on fashion or sports, but there was plenty of time to discuss politics and world events. Learning was considered a personal responsibility and as important as my parents’ jobs were to the household. I have carried this love of learning with me throughout the years and have tried to instill that same passion for education in my own son, who is now grown. I have also found that the grounding my parents gave me in this regard has informed my approach to my career and the roles I have played in the workplace over the years—I am inquisitive, I question the status quo, I listen, and I love to get to the heart of every matter before making what I hope is the right decision for the business. I joined Time Warner Cable just about a year ago. Since then, I have been impressed with the company’s



September/October 2012

deep commitment to address America’s declining proficiency in STEM, which we all recognize puts our children at risk of not competing successfully in a global economy. In response, Connect a Million Minds was born in late 2009. It is an initiative designed to connect young people to fun, engaging STEM opportunities and to inspire them to become the problem solvers of tomorrow. Now, more than two years into the initiative, we know that a key contributor to the shortage of women in STEM is the lack of strong female role models in these fields to whom young women can relate. Having that connection to someone who can bring STEM to life and make it real in today’s world is a great catalyst in helping to address the underrepresentation of women in STEM. Just as my parents and some dedicated teachers were there to spur me on in my early years, our company’s media platform is being utilized to shine a spotlight on STEM careers and role models—including powerful women who have the ability to change young girls’ perceptions of STEM. And that is making all the difference.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Burger King Worldwide, Inc.




Quick service restaurant

“For someone with passion and drive, education can

REVENUES: $8.7 billion

serve as a SPRINGBOARD over any obstacle standing in the way of your goals.”

EMPLOYEES: 13,070 TITLE: Executive Vice President and Global Chief Marketing Officer


What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? If you want to be a real leader, you have to understand the human being. Courses in psychology and sociology help build new levels of awareness to different work situations and personalities embedded across cultures.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? Work/life balance requires constant adjusting, especially as you enter into different stages of your career and personal life. There will be times when your career will weigh more heavily and times when your responsibilities at home will consume more of your time and energy. The key is to remain realistic and to have strong support systems at home and in your career that will allow you to put your focus where it is needed most.


BBA, Getulio Vargas Foundation School of Business Administration, São Paulo, Brazil; MS, University of Grenoble II, France; MBA, Imbec, São Paulo, Brazil FIRST JOB:

My career started informally as a young entrepreneur selling homemade desserts to local college students. When invading my mother’s kitchen was no longer an option, I started to work as a trainee in a local bank. MY PHILOSOPHY:

BELIEVE THAT THE DECISION TO PURSUE A GRADUATE OR POSTGRADUATE DEGREE IS A VERY PERSONAL ONE. And while there are many very successful entrepreneurs who have done extremely well without college degrees, I believe that my graduate and post-graduate studies have been essential in shaping my professional journey as well as providing an opportunity for personal discovery. For someone with passion and drive, education can serve as a springboard over any obstacle standing in the way of your goals. It is my belief that I would not be where I am today without the years I spent furthering my education. Having chosen a career in marketing and consumer insights, the positions I have held have required a great deal of data analysis followed by quick, strategic business planning. The knowledge I gained at school has been essential in helping me to take raw data and translate it into effective marketing strategies that connect with our consumer targets. Although it has been quite some time since I’ve stepped foot into a classroom, I do have several recent college graduates who have joined my team. The skills they have acquired in their graduate or post-graduate studies are essential in helping them to navigate the complex challenges faced by a global brand. While I cannot speak for all fields, I believe that a good education from a nationally or internationally recognized school can help differentiate candidates with little work experience. Ultimately, the decision is a personal one and regardless of what a young person decides is the right choice for them my advice is simple: The key to a happy and successful career is to become a “student of life” and never stop learning. September/October 2012

Never stop learning. The world is so dynamic that it demands constant learning. FAMILY: Husband and

two children



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Carol Hyland

Libertyville, Illinois WEBSITE:

Forsyte “To begin solving this problem, we need



Motorola Mobility

to IMPROVE STEM education for all our children.”


$13 billion EMPLOYEES:

20,000 TITLE:

Corporate Vice President, Law and Board Secretary EDUCATION:

BA, Rutgers University; JD, University of California, Hastings Colleges of the Law FIRST JOB:

Ski and tennis shop MY PHILOSOPHY:

Take on challenges. FAMILY:

Husband and two children

What does it take to succeed in your position? A willingness to always give well-reasoned advice to your clients, even when they don’t like your advice.

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? When facing discrimination, it is almost a certainty that you are being under-estimated. You can and should use that to your advantage. Also seek guidance from a trusted colleague on how to address the problem—you are not alone.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I try to limit the number of meetings I attend. I ask for agendas to make sure the meeting has a valid purpose and my attendance is needed. And yes, I eat lunch at my desk.



HILE IN MANY RESPECTS HIGH SCHOOL IS A DISTANT MEMORY, I HAVE A VIVID RECOLLECTION OF A DISCUSSION WITH MY 11TH GRADE BIOLOGY TEACHER. I can picture the classroom, my teacher’s short haircut in the late 1970s style, and my utter incredulity when she said I would make a great scientist. All I could think of was “Is this woman out of her mind?” (My adult self can also see the hurt in her eyes as she registered my reaction.) What events led this, at the time, 16-year-old to not even consider a career in science? I had certainly never met a women working in science or engineering (either in real life nor on TV) and it was not clear to me what a career in science meant, other than teaching biology in a high school classroom. After a lot of hard work and thanks to shows like CSI and the celebrated wealth of science geeks at software companies, participation in STEM fields is much more understood and desirable today. Yet women are still woefully underrepresented. I know the environment has changed but it seems that young women are continuing to choose fields other than STEM. To begin solving this problem, we need to improve STEM education for all children. Compelling classes taught by trained teachers with a passion for these fields will increase the overall number of students pursuing STEM careers. At Motorola we fund programs that provide opportunities for STEM professionals to go back to school for their teaching credentials. These programs go beyond helping the teachers get paperwork done. In fact, these programs focus on developing the teacher in the classroom by providing a network of professionals and resources outside the classroom. This network includes experienced teachers who are available to help them develop teaching strategies and tactics and show them how to survive the bureaucracy of the school system. We need to educate young girls, parents, and caregivers on the exciting careers that are available in the STEM fields and that women are excelling in these fields today. When girls come home from a great day in biology lab, they need to be encouraged (and yes maybe more than boys) to pursue a STEM career and have role models to look up to as examples of successful women who are making a difference in these fields.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Linda D.

Comerica Bank



Dallas, Texas WEBSITE:

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Having solid working relationships with my peers. Also, effective communication is essential, especially when dealing with sensitive or controversial information. ›

BUSINESS: Banking/finance REVENUES: $2.6 billion

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Unfortunately, yes. In my training program I was one of two women in a class of more than 20 men. Back then there was an attitude women couldn’t be in high-level roles. I dealt with it by making sure my aspirations and confidence weren’t impacted by someone else’s idea of me.

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I have a very supportive husband who understands the responsibilities of my role. When I can involve him in my activities I do, and he does the same.



Senior Vice President, Business Affairs and Chief Diversity Officer EDUCATION: BS, Bowling

ITHOUT A DOUBT I BELIEVE A COLLEGE DEGREE PROVIDES AN UNMATCHED RETURN ON INVESTMENT AND THE SAME INSURANCE FOR YOUR FUTURE AS IT ONCE DID. I recognize that student debt and student loan rates are at an all-time high and overall it’s an expensive proposition for young people. As students today look at job opportunities and starting salaries compared to the cost of their education, it can seem overwhelming. However, even with the increased cost of tuition, an education will still help you go further and achieve more in the long run. Research shows that over time college graduates make in excess of a million dollars more than high school graduates. Back in the 1950s and 1960s a high school graduate had great potential to earn just as much as a college graduate. By entering the workforce immediately it may have even given them a slight advantage. However, the world has changed and it’s no secret that the economy is struggling. Today there are fewer non-technical, non-specialty positions available for high school graduates and a college education is key to long-term success. Unemployed college graduates who think they are in similar positions as high school graduates don’t realize the opportunities that lie ahead of them. When the economy rebounds, employers will be looking for educated people with a broad knowledge of global markets, global economies, and nimbleness to quickly adapt to change. High school graduates, as smart as they may be, may not have the same level of analytical and critical thinking skills as college graduates, and employers recognize that. The world needs a new level of sophistication and it is the education of our future generations that will be the source of that talent. When you go to an employer and are armed with a college degree, it is as though you are presenting a ticket that has been punched for so many additional skills beyond what is offered in high school. Your ticket has been punched for analytical thinking, hard work, determination, exposure to worldly and creative ideas, increasing technological solutions, diversity and much more. When you present this ticket against someone who has only achieved a high school education, there really isn’t a choice when it comes to being competitive in the job market. In the words of Malcolm X, “Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.” September/October 2012

Green State University; MBA, University of Michigan FIRST JOB: Detroit Bank &

Trust Co., banking center management trainee program MY PHILOSOPHY:

Remember R.I.T.: relationships come before issues and tasks. FAMILY:

Married, with two daughters and three grandchildren



DIVERSITY MAKES US STRONGER Linda Goodspeed Chief Information Officer, ServiceMaster

ServiceMaster congratulates Linda Goodspeed for being n a m e d o n e o f t h i s y e a r ’s “ Wo m e n Wo r t h Watc h i n g.” Linda and her team help to simplify and improve the quality of our customers’ lives every day. To learn more about ServiceMaster, visit or scan the QR Code below.

Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Alejandra Garza, Valoramas • Cassandra Franklin, Dickstein Shapiro • Kathleen Geraghty, National Grid • Elizabeth P. Hall, WellPoint, Inc. Barbara M. Gonzalez, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement • Wendy Foster, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay • Kathleen Rose Golovan, Medical Mutual of Ohio • Alison Gleeson, Cisco Systems, Inc. Reena Gambhir, Hausfeld LLP • Linda Goodspeed, ServiceMaster • Karen A. Giannelli, Gibbons P.C. • Carrie Gates, CA Technologies




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay



S THE PARENT OF A RECENT COLLEGE GRADUATE, I KNOW FIRST-HAND HOW EXPENSIVE A COLLEGE EDUCATION IS THESE DAYS. Tuition and fees are rising faster than family incomes. More students are being forced to borrow to pay for their education and are graduating with more debt. And yet, statistics seem to confirm the only thing worse than graduating with college debt is not graduating from college at all. It is estimated that by 2020, more than 65 percent of jobs available will require post-high school education; and that number rises to as much as 90 percent in the fastest growing industries. Workers with a bachelor’s degree earn a whopping 74 percent more on average than those with a high school diploma alone. So while the hard truth is that the cost of college can be daunting, the facts are that a college degree pays. In my career to date, I have worked in four different industries. Statistics show that over the course of a working lifetime, the average worker will have seven different jobs. Ten years into my career, I went back to school at night to get an MBA HEADQUARTERS: Boston, Massachusetts in order to stay competitive. Versatility and a broad set of skills are required in today’s job market. Competition is fierce. Technological advancements and the globalization of the WEBSITE: economy have accelerated the pace of change in which jobs come and go and skills can rapidly become obsolete. Workers cannot afford to be complacent about the education BUSINESS: Nonprofit and training they need to stay competitive. That is why I believe our goal should be lifelong learning. We should assume that we REVENUES: $5 million will never finish acquiring the knowledge and skills we need to be competitive and to have fulfilling careers and lives. And apart from the financial and competitive benefits, EMPLOYEES: 50 lifelong learning has the benefit of broadening the mind, opening the door to a wider TITLE: range of possibilities, and expanding horizons. President & CEO The good news is that along the path of postsecondary education there are many EDUCATION: byways. There is no one best route. For example, given the expense of college, many BA, Cornell University; students choose to receive an associate degree at a community college and then move MBA, The George to a university to attain their bachelor’s degree. Others choose to attend public univerWashington University sity over a private school. And college is not for everyone. Some choose vocational or FIRST JOB: technical certificates or degrees instead of associate or bachelor’s degrees. There are pros Advertising Account and cons to every choice, but one thing is certain—pursuing postsecondary education Executive is not an option; it is a requirement for life success. MY PHILOSOPHY:

Work hard. Be authentic. Seek first to understand. Be the change you want to see in the world. FAMILY:

Married to Claudia, daughter Alexandra


› What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Leadership, history, cultural competency, and leading change/change management › Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My father exemplified what it means to be a lifelong learner. He instilled in me an insatiable curiosity about the world around me and a passion for learning. › What advice would you give younger women about their education? Talk to people in roles you aspire to attain and ask them about the education that has been important in their advancement. Make your continuing education part of your annual goals.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Dickstein Shapiro LLP


“Women’s education are far more likely to come from VALUES inherent in their own cultures.”


HEN WE READ ABOUT RESTRICTIVE AND OPPRESSIVE SITUATIONS FOR WOMEN IN OTHER CULTURES, IT IS SOMETIMES TEMPTING TO IMPOSE WESTERN CULTURE’S VIEWS OF EDUCATION FOR WOMEN. Yet if our goal is truly to improve the lot of women, teaching women in other cultures to be Western is unlikely to create real change. Given the different societal perspectives, for example, between Islamic and Western cultures, it is unlikely that insisting on educational norms based on Western values will have much lasting impact. Indeed, attempting to advance women’s education by imposing Western values may well cause a societal backlash and make education for women even less accessible. Instead, lasting improvements in women’s education are far more likely to come from values inherent in their own cultures. By encouraging and facilitating the efforts of women to move forward in a manner consistent with their own societal values, we may help them advance in ways that are respected by even conservative forces around them. This route to change requires greater sensitivity and respect for other cultures than simply dictating the adoption of one’s own educational values. However, I believe this kind of intercultural respect is the best way to advance true acceptance of women’s education. There is evidence that this kind of educational growth from within is in fact occurring. For example, through a neutral interpretation of the Quran, Islamic feminism has begun to open new educational avenues for women. In Isobel Coleman’s Paradise Beneath Her Feet, she explores this movement: “Islamic feminists are now combing through centuries of Islamic jurisprudence to highlight the more progressive aspects of their religion. They are seeking—and finding—accommodation between a modern role for women and the Islamic values that more than a billion people in the world follow.” Of course, it is important to foster the pursuit of education for women worldwide and, in doing so, attempt to create greater global equality in women’s education. In the end, this will result in greater good for people of all societies and cultures. As Coleman puts it, “economies cannot prosper without the full participation of half the population.” However, in pursuing the goal of greater global equality in education for women, we should seek to foster and nurture existing cultural roots that can ultimately grow a sound and lasting foundation for women’s education, society by society, and culture by culture. September/October 2012

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? After college, I led an Experiment in International Living to France. My homestay with a Bretonne family on a farm was probably the most profound educational experience of my life. I learned that the common bonds of humanity are stronger than the differences between cultures.

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? There are subtle forms of discrimination that continue to impact many women in business and professional life.


Washington, D.C. WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Law firm REVENUES: $267 million EMPLOYEES: 718 TITLE:

Deputy Practice Leader (Insurance Coverage Group) EDUCATION:

BA, University of Arizona; JD, Duke University School of Law FIRST JOB: Lecturer,

University of Arizona Department of Romance Languages (French) MY PHILOSOPHY:

When I was very young, my father gave me a ring inscribed with four initials— TLLC, for truth, love, loyalty, and courage. I still wear that ring every day as a reminder of the importance of those basic values. FAMILY: Husband, daughter,

and two fabulous Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Reena ›

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? A diverse range across disciplines, including English and economics

› Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My ninth grade English teacher; I had always loved to read literature, he taught me how to experience literature. ›

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Don’t take any of it for granted. Make every class and lecture count. The saying “you forget everything you learned” is far from true. You truly take it all with you.






BA, Boston College; MA, University of Chicago; JD, George Washington University Law School FIRST JOB:

Desk assistant MY PHILOSOPHY:

“It's better to die on your feet than to live on your knees.” —Emiliano Zapata FAMILY:

I share a home with my wonderful husband.


Hausfeld LLP



Y PARENTS EMIGRATED FROM INDIA TO CANADA IN THE EARLY 1960s WITH LITTLE MORE THAN 50 DOLLARS IN THEIR POCKET AND THE NAME OF A CONTACT IN EDMONTON WHO COULD HELP THEM SETTLE INTO THEIR NEW COMMUNITY. They arrived in the cold of winter, and my mother, raised in small village outside of Delhi, was fearful that spring would never arrive. Of course, it did eventually, and my parents, armed with an uncanny resourcefulness, the support of a community of friends, and a belief that through education there is a broadening of not only of what one can do but how one can understand the world, managed to survive and then thrive in a country that was so different from the one they came from. So often we hear that education is a tool to empower, a means to progress one’s station, a path to contribute to a better life. And it is, it can be. But education first and foremost is a value, something to teach our children to appreciate because we appreciate it ourselves. The role of education is not simply a means to an end—study hard and this will pay off in financial success—but a shared principal that is bigger and more important than earning individual dividends. My parents grew up in a community of immigrants who understood this, who helped and supported each other, and most importantly, believed that education was necessary not only for themselves but also for the community who supported them. Perhaps one of the greatest challenges facing public education systems—more so than lack of resources, class, cultural and digital divides—is the waning communal support of and the belief in education’s importance. It is true that any school system needs resources and data-driven plans for training better teachers and building more relevant curriculums, but public education also needs the support of an entire ecosystem—parents, teachers, and communities—reinforcing that the role of education is a shared necessary condition of success. I am a first-generation Indian American woman and my parents’ story lives at the core of my education: that we inherit our history, learn to accept it, understand it, challenge it, and in the end, with the support of a community to stand on, we have the ability to change it, to improve it. It is our role to pass down the value of education to future generations, and in doing so, arm our children with the belief that they can achieve success, that they can make a better world.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Chicago, Illinois WEBSITE:


Garza “My parents believed in the


Latino-focused online retail and community portal EMPLOYEES: 8 TITLE:

President, Valoramás EDUCATION:

BA, University of Illinois at Chicago; MBA, University of Chicago FIRST JOB:


Enjoy the journey, wherever it may go. FAMILY:

Family is a core pillar to the Latino culture. My parents taught me that helping others is not a duty, but a part of our DNA.


TRANSFORMATIONAL power of education.”


S PART OF THE MORE THAN 50 MILLION LATINOS LIVING IN THE U.S. TODAY, I AM PROUD TO BE A MEMBER OF THIS GROWING SEGMENT OF OUR COUNTRY. This momentous growth comes as a result of numerous factors and will generate many exciting professional and political opportunities for the Latino community. In order to increase our presence and contributions to this nation’s success, we need to address the challenges of engaging Latino students in attaining their degrees from higher education. Growing up as a Latina, education was wired into my DNA as a key to achieving my future goals. My parents believed in the transformational power of education. Now more than ever, college and post-secondary completion needs to become inherent to arm future generations of leaders with the proper tools to enter an increasingly competitive job market. Even though today’s economy has shown to be uncertain, education is a constant, an instrument that has demonstrated to outlast the most tumultuous of economic times. My university and graduate studies have allowed me to acquire skill sets that have opened doors to opportunities that otherwise would have not been attainable. These opportunities have led to increased responsibilities during my professional career that includes corporate, nonprofit, and entrepreneurial fields. Today, students must not be deterred by the current state of the country’s economy, but rather become empowered and informed about existing and new resources designed to help them reach academic achievement. During these economic times, innovation, risk-taking and bicultural experiences increase the opportunities to participate in a growing global economy. In addition, experiences in community-serving nonprofits provide training grounds for developing leadership skills that assist in reaching academic and professional achievement. We live in a country that welcomes ethnicities from all over the world, and for those of us fortunate to study here, it is our right to pursue a higher education to become the leaders we set out to be. It is also our duty to motivate those that come after us so that we continue to contribute to the success of our nation. › How has your education affected your career? Education has provided me the tools that have paved the way to success throughout my professional journey. Education is the most valuable asset that remains with you no matter where life takes you. ›

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Aspiring leaders should pay special attention to liberal arts that will discipline them as individuals. Leadership requires openness to all expressions of the human existence, which are well-represented in liberal arts studies.

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I practice meditation at home. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner



Islandia, New York WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Large-scale systems software REVENUES:

$4.8 billion EMPLOYEES:

14,000 TITLE:

Distinguished Engineer EDUCATION:

PhD, Dalhousie University FIRST JOB:

I spent less than one day at my dad’s Christmas tree lot, doing physical labor. I started at 7 a.m. and quit at noon, telling my dad that I would go to college instead. MY PHILOSOPHY:

Follow your heart.

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Take courses that push you as a person, e.g. those that make you interact with new people, or give presentations

What does it take to succeed in your position? The ability to collaborate and to lead, and to find balance between the two. Also, taking risks, particularly the risk that a project might fail.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Get one! Ensure that it is broad versus very deep. Use education to explore yourself and what you want to achieve in life.


CA Technologies



HILE WOMEN EXCEL IN POSITIONS OF INFLUENCE IN EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS, THE CORPORATE ENVIRONMENT HAS DIFFERENT REQUIREMENTS FOR SUCCESS. In school, the person who does the best work is rewarded, and the playing field is both even and very well-defined. In industry, it’s not sufficient to be good at what you do—you must be well-known within the company and/or industry to rise to the top. I’ve uncovered three powerful ways you can almost instantly increase your visibility in the corporate world. In school, you need to do everything the professor assigns (and do it well). In industry, first you need to take on the right projects. Focus on those tasks that give you the most visibility outside your department and higher up the management chain. Learn how, and when, to say “no.” Surprisingly, if you value your time, others will value it as well. Secondly, ask your manager for assignments that will increase your visibility even further. If you know of a high-profile project kicking off, ask to lead it. If you ask, you are more likely to get it. Volunteering for projects like this signals to your manager that you are proactive, willing to try new things, and have broader interests than what’s on your day-to-day list of responsibilities. What if a project requires four skills, but you only have two or three of them? Ask for the project anyway! Never be afraid to take on tasks that stretch you outside your skill and comfort zone. Others in the company are doing this. If you don’t stretch yourself, you won’t gain the skills you need to keep progressing. Thirdly, get known. You need to learn how to sell yourself. And while women have generally been discouraged from bragging about their accomplishments, this is a must in the corporate world. Expecting others to brag about you is a no-win scenario. Of course, you should not take credit for others’ work—you must balance self-promotion with integrity. And never, ever, denigrate yourself or your work. If someone compliments you, never say “It was nothing,” because they will then believe that it was nothing. Simply say “thank you.” What I’m really suggesting is, be bold. Take risks. No one excels in industry by quietly doing just the work they are assigned. Be passionate about what you do, let people see your passion—and your accomplishments. You will gain the respect required to progress and succeed.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Waltham, Massachusetts WEBSITE: BUSINESS: International electricity and gas company REVENUES: $22 billion EMPLOYEES: 27,000 TITLE: Vice President, Labor

and Employee Relations EDUCATION: BA, McGill Uni-

versity, Montreal, Quebec; DEC, John Abbott College, Ste. Anne de Bellevue, Quebec FIRST JOB: At 15 I started my

first job; I was horribly suited for the job and it did not last too long. It did however teach me that if you have the aptitude and passion for a job great success is likely. MY PHILOSOPHY: Have passion

for what you do. Work hard. FAMILY: My family has been

instrumental in every step of my success.

Kathleen (Kass)

National Grid

Geraghty “A college education makes more sense today than ever, as employers increasingly insist a college education is a basic REQUIREMENT for most jobs.”


HE COST OF A COLLEGE EDUCATION IS INCREASING AT AN ALARMING RATE AND THE NUMBER OF RECENT GRADS UNABLE TO FIND A JOB IS AT AN ALL-TIME HIGH. No wonder then that the return on the investment of a college education is increasingly being questioned. High school students must assess the value of a college education against the long-term debt they will likely incur and the shrinking prospects not only for well-paying jobs, but any job at all. While a college degree certainly does not guarantee a well-paying job, it is still the best investment for a student looking for economic and job prosperity. Sure the unemployment or underemployment rate for recent college grads is historically high, but that statistic tells only part of the story. The fact is that unemployment and underemployment rates of high school graduates are significantly higher than that of college graduates. The sluggish economy has had a disproportionally negative effect on those entering the job market. Still, college graduates are eventually much more likely to be gainfully employed and earn middle-class wages. A college education makes more sense today than ever, as employers increasingly insist a college education is a basic requirement for most jobs. This is being driven in part by two important factors. First, in the current competitive global market, more low-skilled jobs are being contracted to other countries. Second, advances in technology and automation have eliminated many low-skilled jobs. Simply put, the percentage of low-skill jobs is declining. Jobs today require more complex problem solving, collaboration, influence, perspective, and critical analysis. These are the types of skills that a college education can help develop and foster. Equally important is the perception among recruiters that a college degree demonstrates that an applicant has the ability to take on a long-term challenge and not quit. The ability to learn, practice, and persevere with longer-term endeavors is an important indicator of future on-the-job performance and one that employers highly value. The real challenge facing today’s high school students is making the best choices regarding major and institution to optimize the return on education investment. With shifting job markets, STEM and business degrees may offer graduates the greatest opportunity for job placement. However, those choices need to be balanced with aptitude, passion, and financial means. In the end, choosing education as a personal investment is a pretty safe bet. After all, education is the great equalizer in American society, offering greater prospects for social mobility and personal and professional satisfaction. ›

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? This is one of my greatest challenges. My family and I have made a commitment to taking advantage of vacation time. I love to travel and the trips provide an ideal opportunity to recharge and build perspective. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Karen A.



Newark, New Jersey WEBSITE:

“Through these programs, female students are exposed to women engineers and university science PROFESSORS.”


Law firm REVENUES:


HERE IS AN ABUNDANCE OF COMMENTARY REPORTING THE DISPARITY BETWEEN PROFESSIONAL WOMEN IN THE WORKFORCE AND WOMEN IN STEM OCCUPATIONS (49 PERCENT VS. FEWER THAN 25 PERCENT). There are many reasons for this disparity, including the dearth of female role models in STEM jobs, failure of grade schools to orient girls toward STEM disciplines, perceived incompatibility of STEM careers with family demands, and natural aversion among girls to STEM-based studies. In recent surveys of high school students and their parents, both groups acknowledged the importance of STEM careers but noted that math and science courses were the students’ most challenging subjects. Most striking was the finding that girls interested in pursuing STEM careers are four times more likely than boys to believe their teachers are not preparing them well enough in STEM subjects. From my brief research on the subject, I learned there are a number of innovative programs throughout the country following President Obama’s 2009 STEM initiatives, including “all-girls’” classes in engineering in a middle school in Coral Gables, Florida; Ohio State University’s Women in Engineering department; the School for Young Women Leaders in Austin, Texas, a STEM-focused high school curriculum; and a “pilot” hands-on science program in Belfast, Maine focused on girls. Through these programs, female students are exposed to women engineers and university science professors. I am the stereotypical female who did not enjoy or excel in science or math and did not consider a career in either discipline. Truth be told, I have a better skill set for my career in law, although I admit that I often wish my math skills were better. However, unlike the female students today, I did not have the fortune to be educated in those subjects in a hands-on, practical way. In contrast, some of my nieces and cousins today are pursuing careers in STEM jobs, particularly in science. Undoubtedly they have enjoyed the benefits of the opportunities afforded to females in recent years. While the existing disparity in STEM careers for females is undeniable, we are on a path to right the course. By way of comparison, I reflect upon the dearth of women in the courtroom and female doctors in the past, which is not the case today. So there is reason for optimism.



September/October 2012

$111 million EMPLOYEES:

395 TITLE:

Chair, Financial Restructuring & Creditors’ Rights Department EDUCATION:

BA, Tufts University; JD, Rutgers University School of Law FIRST JOB:


No pain, no gain. FAMILY:

Married to John Eckart; daughter and son

› How has your education affected your career? It was a means to an end, but learning does not stop when you leave the academic world. ›

What does it take to succeed in your position? Commitment, hard work, and the ability to get along with others

› What advice would you give younger women about their education? Take advantage of every opportunity to learn something new and stay engaged. Do not worry about your final career path—it is not always obvious, but with commitment, hard work, and a little luck, things will work out.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner




San Jose, California WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Information technology REVENUES:

$43 billion EMPLOYEES: 65,223 TITLE:

Senior Vice President, US Commercial Sales EDUCATION:

BA, Michigan State University FIRST JOB:

Sales representative at Unisys, a global IT organization MY PHILOSOPHY:

Find purpose in life and live your passion. FAMILY:

Married with two children, Marcus and Alexandria

Cisco Systems, Inc.

› How has your education affected your career? My education coupled with differing internships in both finance and technology that I secured during college were instrumental in helping me determine the career path I wanted to take. › What does it take to succeed in your position? Passion, perseverance, and the ability to ‘not sweat the small stuff’ ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My Spanish teacher in high school was the first teacher that ever told me I was smart. It made a significant difference in my outlook on life and gave me the confidence to pursue my passions.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Advances in collaboration and video technologies today have made it possible for me to take meetings with people from across the globe without ever having to physically leave my home or office. This means I can have a meeting feeling like I’m ‘in’ Japan in the morning and come home for dinner with my family in Michigan the same day.


ESS THAN 100 YEARS AGO, WOMEN WERE GIVEN THE RIGHT TO VOTE. SEVERAL DECADES LATER WE FOUND OUR WAY INTO CORPORATE AMERICA. Today, we have a seat at the conference table and are making important strides by taking business leadership roles. While currently only 3.2 percent of publicly traded companies have women at the helm, 2012 set an important record, with more women holding CEO roles at Fortune 500 companies than ever before. More positive change is on the horizon. This year, 41 percent of World Economic Forum Young Global leaders—78 of 192—are female. Much of this ongoing success can be attributed to the immense progress women have made in terms of education. Today, for every two men who receive a college degree in the U.S., three women achieve that same milestone. Education gives us knowledge of the world around us. It helps us build opinions and have new points of view. It makes us capable of interpreting things rightly. Education provides us the essential building blocks for pursing fulfilling careers. Career challenges that women historically faced in terms of pay-rate inequality have narrowed significantly since the 1960s. While there still may be a ways to go until the gap closes completely, educational opportunities will continue to play an integral role in this progression. Schools and universities are important places where women can learn the skills needed to succeed in business or politics. They are also places to find and nurture important relationships that will impact future employment and business opportunities. Building a network of mentors, sponsors and other key connections—what I call a “circle of friends”—means surrounding ourselves with those who are willing to actively advocate on our behalf, and help advance our career. They may connect us with senior leaders, promote visibility in the right circles, give advice on career moves or help find new opportunities either within or outside of a company. Education better equips us to follow our dreams. It opens doors to exciting career and life opportunities. It enables us to better contribute to society and we are rewarded when exercising the expertise we have acquired. Gaining a solid education reminds us that we can all do great things if we just put our mind to it. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Kathleen Rose

Medical Mutual of Ohio



ECENTLY I WAS SCANNING THE NEWSPAPER. One of the headlines jumped out at me “Women doctors paid less than male counterparts: On average make $12,000 less per year—why the disparity?” After reading the article many of my gut feelings were confirmed. Women have overtaken men in the number of college and graduate school graduates but they still lag behind in compensation and leadership roles— why? I think many would still argue that it is because women choose to take time off to raise families and choose career paths that do not end up in the boardroom. If it is about choice then I do not think there is a problem. I just do not think that it is always about choice and the studies support my conclusion. If you control for families and only compare men and a women with the exact same job with the same experience and education you still find significant disparity. I think it boils down to men are much better than women at selfpromotion and are more aggressive in seizing opportunities. Girls are taught from an early age to be consensus builders and focus on the team. These are important characteristics but they often leave women unrecognized for individual achievements and overlooked when it comes time for promotion and money. To equal out the disparity women need to learn how to be recognized. This includes learning how to promote their accomplishments, push themselves to take risks, and learn as much as they can about the “big picture.” I believe that strong mentorship of females is a crucial step in assisting women to develop and achieve equality in the workplace. I owe much of my current success to an individual who opened doors for me to go outside my comfort zone, made sure I was recognized for my successes, and taught me much about the big picture. I have been very lucky in having this mentor and others throughout my career. It was not all luck though; I took ownership of seeking out this mentor and others. We as women in leadership positions have to take on the responsibility to mentor others as well as teach women that they have a responsibility to find and develop these mentoring relationships.

“We as women in leadership positions have to take on the responsibility to MENTOR OTHERS as well as teach women that they have a responsibility to find and develop these mentoring relationships.” 100


September/October 2012

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? To be a leader you have to have people willing to follow you. My psychology classes helped me better understand how people learn, remember, communicate and react.

› What does it take to succeed in your position? The ability to communicate clearly and understand how all the pieces fit together. › How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I have a wonderful husband who is my partner in everything and work for an amazing company that absolutely supports work/ life balance. Work is important but I never forget family is everything.


Cleveland, Ohio WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Health and life insurance REVENUES:

$2 billion EMPLOYEES:

2500 TITLE:

Chief Information Officer EDUCATION:

BA, The College of Wooster; JD, Case Western Reserve University FIRST JOB:


To whom much is given much is expected. FAMILY:

Married with four children

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Barbara M. ›

What does it take to succeed in your position? Wisdom, patience, perseverance, compassion, flexibility, vision, and strength

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Florida International University professor Dr. Howard Frank always challenged me to do better, to think outside the box, and to push myself.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Make your health your number one priority. A healthy body and mind allows you to balance work and family demands.



Federal law enforcement agency EMPLOYEES:

20,000 TITLE:

Press Secretary EDUCATION:

BA, Florida International University FIRST JOB:

Student intern with U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) MY PHILOSOPHY:

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. FAMILY:


U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

Gonzalez “To anyone wondering whether or not a

college education is worth fighting for: IT IS.”


WAS THREE YEARS OLD WHEN MY FAMILY IMMIGRATED TO THE UNITED STATES FROM CUBA. My parents gave up the life they knew and country that had been their home for the promise of hope in a foreign land. They knew that the sacrifices they were making weren’t really for them, but for their children. They wanted me and my brother to have the freedom to express ourselves, to form our own opinions, and to follow our dreams. They knew that in Cuba, under a dictator, that would never happen. My grandmother, Caridad Veliz, who also immigrated with us, instilled values in me that I will carry forever. One of those values was the appreciation of education. As an orphan, she couldn’t go to school because she had to work as a maid to survive. She longed for an education until the day she died. Her experiences and my parents’ sacrifices ignited my desire to go to college. I wanted to be someone, to do something, and to give back to the country that had given me so much. College degrees are costly and require a lot of commitment, but they pay dividends for a lifetime. In a competitive job market, only having a high school diploma makes it tougher to climb the career ladder. It’s not so much the piece of paper, but the experiences gained, the knowledge acquired, and the character developed that better prepares college graduates to compete in today’s workforce. For me, going to college was an easy decision to make but a harder reality to make happen. I worked full-time while I was a student. I didn’t have the traditional college experience and years later, I’m still paying for my student loans—but I wouldn’t change a thing. Those experiences made my college degree more valuable, not less. Today, I am proud to serve as the press secretary of a federal law enforcement agency charged with protecting America and all that it stands for—a job that is deeply meaningful to me and my family. To anyone wondering whether or not a college education is worth fighting for: it is. Investing in a degree is a promise to yourself—and to those that helped you along the way—that the journey to your dreams may be a long one, but you’ll get there one day. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner





VIEW EDUCATION AS AN INSURANCE POLICY. A degree is one of the few assets one carries that identifies one’s achievements. I believe in continuous lifetime learning. I am currently enrolled in a doctorate program for no reason other than I want to learn and exchange ideas with fellow peers and professionals globally. Life takes you in different directions, and surrounding yourself with people you can learn from might direct your path in areas you never dreamed would occur. Studies continue to validate that college graduates, in general, enjoy a higher lifetime earning potential than high school graduates. From a business perspective, the net present value of college graduate lifetime earnings far exceeds the educational costs. Education correlates to the economic success of developing countries. Countries with better-educated citizens enjoy better health and even reduced infant mortality. Turning to the issue of genHEADQUARTERS: der, women continue to earn Memphis, Tennessee substantially less than their WEBSITE: male counterparts do at all education levels. BUSINESS: Residential and Women in technical commercial services positions earn more than women in other REVENUES: $3.2 billion roles, but still almost EMPLOYEES: 21,000

“Education DRIVES innovation through advanced research.”

10 percent less than their male counterparts. In the area of STEM, women still comprise only about 25 percent of the enrolling students. I graduated as a mechanical engineer approximately 20 years ago. I am stunned that the STEM classrooms today still do not have more women. Education drives innovation through advanced research. It has proven to improve advancement potential. Companies can help by encouraging continuous education or tuition reimbursement. Governments can encourage enrollment in the STEM fields through incentives. An unfortunate trend of differential tuition or charging more tuition for particular programs of study has occurred. I believe the opposite should occur. Universities should be held accountable for delivering employable, sustainable graduates to the workforce. Encouraging enrollment in STEM programs and tailoring all programs with a math-based emphasis would drive an employable workforce. Education relies on talented teachers in the classrooms. Studies have shown that the teacher talent correlates to student performance. Teachers serve as role models and trusted guides to a student. I had teachers who were there for me at turning points in my life. Teachers spend more time with students than parents do and the role they play should not be taken lightly. Having superstars in the classroom is what the children of tomorrow deserve.


Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer EDUCATION: BS, Michigan

State University; MBA, University of Michigan FIRST JOB: Product Engineer,

Ford Motor Company MY PHILOSOPHY: From the

moment you are born to the moment you leave this earth, you are learning. Whether structured or not, your environment and surroundings influence you. FAMILY:

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My fourth-grade teacher had the largest impact on my life. She provided me with an opportunity to take leadership roles in class activities that pushed me beyond my comfort zone and forced me to grow. I learned to take on tasks without fear and carry that philosophy with me to this day.

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? No, I do not let it affect me. I think the best method of addressing this is directly with the person that is demonstrating discrimination.

Married with two sons



September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Elizabeth P. ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Dr. Paul Root Wolpe. He reminded me that if I was passionate about a line of study, applied myself, and excelled, I would be able to create a successful path for myself.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Balance, what is balance? Seriously, though, it starts with a loving and supportive spouse and prioritizing. Family always comes first. Delegate where you can and regularly review tasks at hand to remove items that are unnecessary and don't proactively advance your goals. Balance is a lifelong pursuit and flexibility is essential.


Indianapolis, Indiana WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Health benefits REVENUES: $60.7 billion EMPLOYEES: 37,000 TITLE: Vice President, Federal Affairs EDUCATION: BA, University

of Pennsylvania FIRST JOB: My absolute first

job was a store clerk at a locally-owned and -operated craft supply store. My first professional job out of college was as a staff assistant for U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE). MY PHILOSOPHY:

Never stop learning. FAMILY:

Happily married with two young children

WellPoint, Inc.


“I’ve never gotten bored. I LOVE what I do. There is always more to learn and teach.”


HAD NEVER CONTEMPLATED A CAREER IN POLICY AND POLITICS UNTIL I WENT TO COLLEGE. I simply wanted to help people. Then two seminal events shaped my future. First, I was required to take a social science course—I chose Sociology 101. Interspersed with the discussion of esoteric theories of long-dead thinkers like Durkheim, Montesquieu, and Marx, there were discussions of medicine and ethics, and ultimately, health policy, that caught and held my attention. Second, I was invited to participate in a seminar taught by the university president on leadership. But she didn’t challenge us to become CEOs, she challenged us to consider a career in public service. In my family, higher education was never a question. My parents never asked if I would go to college, but rather where I would go to college and what I would study. However, it was up to me to make the most of the experience and decide how to use what I learned to my own advantage. My college experience set me on a course to Congress, the administration, and now the private sector. In each case I married my passion, knowledge, and knack for relating to others to create a successful career in health policy. But my education didn’t stop with school. Rather, for me, college inspired a never-ending pursuit of both learning and teaching. When one asks me what I do for a living, I tell them that I work every day to educate legislators and policy makers. My staff and I teach members of Congress, their staff, and others about my company, what role we play in the health care system, and how we work every day to improve the lives of the people we serve and the health of our communities. In addition, my team educates 37,000 employees about how federal legislators and regulators are proposing to change and modify health policy and the process through which they do it. When I started my first job on Capitol Hill, I thought I would work there for a few years before I would get bored and go to graduate school. I’ve never gotten bored. I love what I do. There is always more to learn and teach. September/October 2012



Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Rear Admiral CJ Jaynes, U.S. Navy, Naval Air Systems Command • Karen Heath-Wade, Nationwide Insurance • Camille Jablonski, Terex Corporation • Deborah Hecker, Sodexo, Inc. Sarah Hodgdon, Sierra Club • Helene Harding, ConocoPhillips • Tammy Johns, ManpowerGroup • Kristin Hilf, Raytheon Company Tija Rose Hilton-Phillips, Highmark, Inc. • Patricia M. Henry, RehabCare • Naureen Hassan, Charles Schwab • Donna A. Johnson, MasterCard Worldwide




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner HEADQUARTERS:


Oil and gas EMPLOYEES:



Harding “History landed women here, but the current reality opens the door for CONTINUED progress.”

16,000 TITLE:

General Manager, Gulf Coast Business Unit EDUCATION:

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Commitment to people, continuous personal growth, a positive attitude, learning from your mistakes, and a strong education


Preparing food at Burger King MY PHILOSOPHY:

Stay true to yourself and follow your passion. FAMILY:

My husband Patrick and our very active Weimerainer, Aspen


HE LOW PERCENTAGE OF FEMALE EXECUTIVES AND CORPORATE DIRECTORS IS OFTEN PERCEIVED AS A PROBLEM. Viewing this imbalance as an opportunity instead of a threat would create a wider range of solutions and potentially give women greater impact. History landed women here, but the current reality opens the door for continued progress. We must acknowledge that cultural values in existence for thousands of years socialized women to stay home and raise children, while men evolved as the primary providers. Much has changed since those early years, as evidenced by women now outpacing men in obtaining degrees of all levels. Although traditional roles are changing, there may never be as many women as men aspiring to senior management positions. Executives often spend long hours at work due to the demands of their positions. It is possible that a greater number of women prefer to spend time outside work on other activities, such as community service, or pursue small business careers that satisfy different values and permit greater flexibility. Indeed, this same group of well-educated women may have thrived in their education environment



Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? In subtle ways since you are outside the power of the male network. However, being a woman in a maledominated business has actually had some advantages—women can make great intuitive and passionate leaders.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Value and treasure it—your education is your springboard into the real world.

because it offered flexible hours, social opportunities, and engagement in diverse activities. To gain an advantage, corporations and boards should recognize the value of women as part of their leadership and management structure. They should take action to adopt practices that signal to women the importance of their contributions and provide them with the support they need. To leverage the female advantage, companies should recruit top female professionals, technologists and managers; send promising women to leadership training; establish a campuslike environment that encourages continuous learning, social networking, and engagement in diverse activities; encourage women in senior positions to mentor, fostering informal networks and providing professional support; and institute flexible working hours instead of relying on continuous hours as a requirement for career advancement. Changing an organization’s culture requires ongoing commitment and focus. The good news is that an increasing number of educated and motivated women are likely to stay, move up into senior corporate positions, make a positive impact, serve on boards, and nurture more women in their wake.

September/October 2012

ConocoPhillips applauds



for being recognized as one of this year’s

Women Worth Watching. At ConocoPhillips we value the contributions of every individual, and we are committed to helping people with diverse backgrounds succeed. Our global, multicultural workforce brings together many backgrounds, talents and experience. We believe a diverse workforce drives creative solutions to tomorrow’s challenges by looking at opportunities in different ways. Helene Harding embodies the core values of our company, and her vision, innovation and leadership inspire us. We congratulate Helene and the other individuals recognized in the Profiles in Diversity Journal’s annual Women Worth Watching® issue.

Helene Harding, General Manager, Gulf Coast Business Unit, ConocoPhillips

© ConocoPhillips Company. 2012. All rights reserved.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Charles Schwab



San Francisco, California WEBSITE:



HERE HAS ALWAYS BEEN A GAP BETWEEN MEN AND WOMEN IN BUSINESS. Research by economists at Cornell University shows that 91 percent of the gap can be explained by so-called “human capital” factors such as part-time work, choice of occupation/industry, and experience. However, nearly 10 percent can’t be explained by these factors. In addition, a recent McKinsey study found that while 53 percent of women make it to middle management, only 24 percent make it to the senior vice president level and even fewer (19 percent) gain entry to the C-suite. How can we tackle this problem? As a student, don’t be afraid to embrace the “tough” subjects. While female enrollment outnumbers male enrollment in colleges and universities, women still tend to be underrepresented in the hard sciences, engineering and mathematics. A strong grounding in math isn’t critical to climbing the corporate ladder, but it certainly can help when it comes to navigating the multiple challenges of running a business—whether in operations, marketing, technology, or product development. Sit up, stand up, and speak up. Women are often afraid to advocate for themselves and have a harder time finding their voice and being noticed in large groups. It’s important to think of the key points you want to make in advance and find the moment to make them. Develop a plan for where you want to go, the experiences you will need to get there, and the relationships you will need to build. Then execute. Unfortunately, doing a good job and waiting for others to recognize you doesn’t often work. You need to get on the radar screen. And don’t be afraid to negotiate. If you switch jobs and don’t aggressively negotiate your pay on your way in, it will be hard to close the gap with a man who does do this. Find sponsors. Anyone who gets to the top has people who helped them get there. Mentors are important, but mentors are people who simply give advice. Sponsors use their political capital to help their protégés advance by helping them build the right connections. Sponsors help protégés because protégés do good work and make their sponsors successful. To climb the ladder, women need to cultivate these relationships. Build a supportive network. This final step is one that is the hardest nut to crack—balancing personal and professional demands. Help can come from a supportive partner and family (my mother has been invaluable), and from an employer. Back-up childcare services, a culture that understands that some of the work will get done after the kids go to sleep, and role-modeling from senior executives are all important in helping women succeed in managing it all.



September/October 2012

Financial services EMPLOYEES: 13,000 TITLE:

Senior Vice President EDUCATION:

AB, Princeton University; MBA, Stanford University FIRST JOB:

Business Analyst at McKinsey & Company MY PHILOSOPHY:

Work hard, but have fun doing it with people you enjoy working with FAMILY:

One son

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? I worked in India in the early ‘90s on a project for a U.S.-based consulting firm. The country had just opened up economically, but women hadn’t entered the work force in significant numbers as of yet. My co-workers and colleagues were all male and, as a result, I was often asked to get or serve the tea by our less-thanenlightened clients. I deflected the awkwardness by claiming American ignorance and refusing to do it.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Take the technical courses. Knowledge of those areas will boost your confidence. And education isn’t just about the courses; it is also about the network and connections you build along the way.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Nationwide Insurance



S I THINK ABOUT THE FOCUS ON EDUCATION AND WHAT IT MEANS, PARTICULARLY THE VALUE OF A COLLEGE EDUCATION, I AM REMINDED OF THE EXPECTATIONS MY PARENTS HAD FOR ME FROM DAY ONE—IT WAS NEVER A QUESTION AS TO WHETHER OR NOT I WAS GOING TO EARN A COLLEGE DEGREE. That is my hope for all young people, because in today’s world having a college education is important for getting into the game. In fact, just having your bachelor’s degree is not enough in today’s environment. College graduates these days require a graduate degree in order to be competitive in the marketplace. College helped me in so many ways: I had to learn to be more responsible to ensure I was in class on time and prepared, manage HEADQUARTERS: my social time to assure I did not Columbus, Ohio fall behind in class, determine what courses were best for WEBSITE: me and my long-term goals, and how to align BUSINESS: myself with positive Financial services/ people who had goals insurance similar to mine. REVENUES: I learned the world $30.7 billion

was much broader than my little world. I was blessed to interact with people from other countries and different cultures, and understood that my way of thinking was not right and theirs wrong—it was just different and that made the world a better place. These experiences all helped me to broaden my perspective about life and living and pushed my thinking to help me grow. I also learned much more about myself during my college days. This is the first time many young people are “on their own” so to speak. It was for me, and I had to learn how to balance that independence for my own success. While I was always disciplined and responsible, there is something about the freedom of being on your own that required me to really focus on that balance. I knew where I wanted to be postcollege from a career perspective, so my focus on grades, understanding my coursework, and being prepared was critical, but of course, I had to have a social life. And finally, the expanded relationships I gained as a result of my college experience—from my college teammates through my college athletic teams to my classmates to my dorm mates—I learned so much from these associations and am a more well-rounded individual as a result. The value of a college of education extends beyond the classroom and coursework learning—one receives both a cultural and social experience and what one learns about one’s self helps to build self-confidence and broadens one’s view of the world. › How has your education affected your career? Education is the roadmap to success. Learning is beyond the classroom, and it is continuous and ongoing. Even in my capacity today, I am constantly reading about my industry, keeping abreast of the trends, and applying what I learn to my daily responsibilities.


32,000 TITLE:

Vice President of National Sales for Nationwide Financial EDUCATION:

BA, Mount Holyoke College; MBA, Loyola University


Do your best in all you do, give to others along the way. FAMILY:

Married with two children

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? There are those that are not comfortable with difference. I chose to keep driving for results and let my results speak for me. I always make sure I am prepared, strive to deliver what I say I will deliver and when, and let my results demonstrate that I, too, am a leader and expert in my field.

› What advice would you give younger women about their education? Do not take it for granted—study hard, challenge yourself. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Sodexo, Inc.



Gaithersburg, Maryland WEBSITE:


ESPITE A SLOWLY RECOVERING ECONOMY AND HIGHER TUITION COSTS, THIS DECADE HAS SEEN A NEARLY 10 PERCENT INCREASE IN COLLEGE ENROLLMENT. Some wonder if the payoff of a degree is worth the nearly $25,000 in debt many graduates acquire, especially when you consider the troubling statistic that one of every two recent college graduates is struggling to find employment. The short answer is yes, when you consider figures provided by the Pew Research Center, that college graduates earn an average of $20,000 more than high school graduates per year, which over a lifetime means $1.17 million more according to the U.S. Census Bureau. I believe, though, that the value of a college education should not be measured solely by the financial advantages it will most likely provide. Nor should it be valued simply by the reality that hiring agents seeking new employees still regard a college education as an important accomplishment to have on a resumé. To me, a college experience is valuable because it fosters the creative and critical thinking skills that companies seek in their leaders today. Learning how to present balanced and cogent positions on a particular topic, engaging in problem solving, practicing the construction of complex concepts—these are all attributes that companies need in their talent pool. Also, college provides an enriching environment that exposes, maybe for the first time, students to a diversity of perspectives and core values. A student becomes prepared, not just for the work world, but also for becoming a citizen of the world. Also, how many of us can say we knew with certainty, at 18, what we wanted our career path to look like? I have four children, all of whom entered college with a course of study in mind. Through the variety of experiences they had during their four years, they all chose professional fields they either hadn’t known about—or imagined they would be interested in—when they entered college. That said, a traditional college education does not suit everyone. There are many fields in which a high school graduate, with appropriate training, can achieve tremendous professional success. For example, pursuing a passion for cooking can often lead to technical training that results in a very satisfying and lucrative career as a chef. The critical factor is to understand what you love doing, and follow through with commitment and rigor. In the end, the value of an education, no matter what form it takes, is not what it prepares us to do, but who it prepares us to be. If we can take the time to learn for the sake of learning and follow our passions, then education becomes a lifelong experience, not merely a period in time when we are young.



September/October 2012


Daily life solutions, food service, and facility management REVENUES: $8 billion EMPLOYEES: 125,000 TITLE:

Vice President, Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility EDUCATION:

BA, Vassar College FIRST JOB:

Camp counselor MY PHILOSOPHY:

Be the change you want to see in the world. —Mahatma Gandhi FAMILY: Husband, three

daughters and one son, five grandchildren

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? No single educator influenced me. It was a compilation of many differing approaches to teaching that allowed me to develop my own style of learning, and I continue to learn every day.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Whenever I’m not at work, I try to be “in the moment,” being fully present and connected with my family and friends. It’s not easy to set aside work responsibilities, but it’s important (and energizing) to put them to the back of your mind for a little while every day, even if just for a walk around the neighborhood with a grandchild in tow.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner HEADQUARTERS:

Louisville, Kentucky

Patricia M.


Rehabilitation services REVENUES: $1 billion EMPLOYEES: 23,000 TITLE: President EDUCATION:

BA, Miami University; MA, Ohio State University FIRST JOB: Speech-Language

Pathologist in Newton, Massachusetts MY PHILOSOPHY:

Always believe that you can accomplish your goals. Do the right thing, no matter what and never be afraid of challenges and hard work. Be yourself. FAMILY:

Married to Jim Henry for 35 years; two children, Colleen Kolar and James Henry

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My public speaking coach taught me to always be the best that I could be in any situation. He motivated me to work hard on what I wanted to accomplish and rewards would follow, including overcoming my initial anxiety.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? It’s a hard thing to do, especially when there are young children involved. Now that my children are grown, I try to focus on spending quality time doing the things that are meaningful in my life outside of work. It does take effort and does not happen unless I make an effort to remember that work is only a small part of what’s important in my life.




E ARE NOW AT AN INTERESTING TIME IN HISTORY. Statistics indicate that women are now outpacing their male counterparts in achieving bachelor’s and advanced college degrees. However, fewer women are currently in executive leadership positions. Yet I do not believe that it has anything to do with the intelligence, motivation, success in education, or the willingness of women to pursue goals of attaining executive positions. First off, we need to recognize the great strides that women have made in attaining leadership positions. We now see female CEOs and other executives in industries that have historically been male dominated. I firmly believe that similar to the significant increase in women earning degrees over the past several decades, we will see the trend in more women executives in the future. As I consider some women who have attained executive success, I believe there are some common themes. Education does not end with the achievement of a degree, rather it is a lifelong process of learning through personal and professional experiences. Females I know in leadership positions are open to new ideas and are willing to contribute to the thought leadership of their organization. They are clear in recognizing the need for others to be involved and operate in a collaborative style that is conducive to building a cohesive, functional team. My advice to others who are beginning their careers or interested in an executive role is to use every opportunity as a learning experience. It is also to listen carefully (we often learn more from listening than talking) and develop a clear understanding of the culture of your work group and be prepared to take steps toward owning that culture. By owning the culture, we may create opportunities that evolve the culture into one that promotes “team” and is inclusive of new people and new ideas. The strength of a team setting and pursuing collective goals will lead to great things. I don’t believe that being a female in today’s workplace is either a positive or a negative. Rather, I believe that the personal characteristics of each individual prepares them for success and roles within leadership. Although statistics indicate that women often continue to lag behind men in executive positions and compensation, we should never lose sight of the progress made over recent decades. We must all believe that goals can be accomplished, achievements require effort and commitment, and success lies within every individual. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner





Waltham, Massachusetts WEBSITE:

“Through engaged teaching, extracurricular clubs


Aerospace and defense

and competitions, and interaction with women volunteers currently employed in the STEM field, girls can be EMPOWERED to become women with fulfilling STEM careers.”


$25 billion EMPLOYEES:




VIVIDLY REMEMBER MY EIGHTH GRADE MATH CLASS, WHICH WAS MY FIRST INTRODUCTION TO ALGEBRA. Our teacher was a woman, but my memory was that she favored the boys in the class when it came to classroom participation. My best friend was the smartest girl, probably the smartest person, in the class. Even though she often raised her hand, the teacher would, more often than not, overlook her to call upon a boy. Eighth grade was many decades ago, but my memory serves to remind me that if we want more women represented in the STEM fields, we need to engage and encourage girls in math and science early in their school career. Through engaged teaching, extracurricular clubs and competitions, and interaction with women volunteers currently employed in the STEM field, girls can be empowered to become women with fulfilling STEM careers. Math and science are tough subjects that require hard work and discipline but they also lead to breakthrough innovations that can change people’s lives. I believe we need to help girls in the early stages of their academic careers to see the connections between the hard work required behind studying math and science and the outcomes of vaccines that cure diseases, materials that make artificial limbs lighter, and technologies that connect and protect people. Despite our teacher, my best friend did become a mechanical and software engineer and she now works for the world’s leading desktop software company. Her motivation and encouragement came from her dad, who was also an engineer. Parents and teachers have the most profound effect on a student’s course of study and I have heard parents dissuade their daughters from studying STEM degrees because of the difficulty. Women are up to the challenge. A rewarding career of any type requires hard work, whether in the classroom or in the post-college world. Girls need to be encouraged to accept the challenge of hard work to reap the highly rewarding careers in STEM. We need more women and more diversity in the STEM disciplines because without different perspectives, without diversity of thought, innovation suffers.



September/October 2012

Vice President, Communications, Integrated Defense Systems EDUCATION:

BA, University of Massachusetts FIRST JOB:

Office assistant FAMILY:

Husband and two sons

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I dispel the notion of balance and I compartmentalize. I understand that the life of a mother with a demanding career is a trade-off and whether I’m at work or at home, I try to stay focused and in the moment. I also am involved in a hobby that requires complete concentration, which I find both invigorating and relaxing and helps to keep me sane.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Instead of competing with your classmates, find or develop a group within your major who you can lean on for support and encouragement. Also, take classes outside of your major. This is the best opportunity in your lifetime to be exposed to all different matters of study, so take advantage.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Tija Rose

Highmark Inc.



Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania WEBSITE: www.highmark.

com BUSINESS: Insurance


ITH THE EVER-INCREASING COST OF A FOUR-YEAR DEGREE, MANY STUDENTS AND THEIR FAMILIES ARE QUESTIONING WHETHER A COLLEGE DEGREE IS WORTH THE INVESTMENT. A four-year degree can cost more than $200,000 depending upon which school a student selects. Student loan debt has reached staggering proportions, and for the first time, it is greater than credit card debt. Today in most instances, salaries for new graduates are not keeping pace with their student loan debt, which makes it hard to repay the debt under some circumstances. All of this sounds very bleak. In my opinion, however, a college degree is still worth the investment. For women and people of color, in order to be competitive, a college degree is critical. It is a lifeline. Unfortunately, women and people of color still lag behind white males in terms of employment opportunities and earning power. The glass ceiling may have cracks in it, but it has not been broken yet. As a friend of mine often says, “There are slippery walls and floors too.” Studies show that over a lifetime those with college degrees earn more money and have greater opportunities for employment and opportunities for advancement than those with only a high school diploma (not to mention that there is a certain level of prestige that comes with holding a college degree). In my opinion, therefore, it is not an option, but a necessity. The more education one has, the more power he or she has, and knowledge is power. Why were women and people of color limited in their ability to receive education or to learn to read? Because if people do not have knowledge, it is easier to subject them to oppression. This quote by Robin Morgan sums it up nicely: “Knowledge is power. Information is power. The secreting or hoarding of knowledge or information may be an act of tyranny camouflaged as humility.” As a result, women and people of lower socioeconomic levels in certain countries today are still denied the access to education. Although college is expensive, there are many options out there. If an Ivy League school gives you a full scholarship, I say go for it. If not, then there are many great local community colleges and state universities out there that offer a quality education at an affordable price. If you placed college on hold and entered the workforce instead and you’re fortunate enough to work for a company that offers tuition assistance, definitely take advantage of it. In the long run, it will be worth the investment. He or she who has the knowledge has the power! September/October 2012

REVENUES: $14.8 billion EMPLOYEES: 20,000 TITLE:

Director, Regulatory Affairs EDUCATION: BA; Franklin &

Marshall College; JD, Dickinson School of Law FIRST JOB:

Law Clerk for the Honorable Harold E. Sheely, President Judge, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania MY PHILOSOPHY:

To always have an attitude of gratitude and to treat everyone the way I want to be treated. FAMILY:

Husband Tod, son Trey, daughter Tahri

› How has education affected my career? Education has not only impacted my career, but my life. My grandmother, an African American woman born in 1901 in Georgia, was limited to an eighth grade education and domestic work. My mother received her high school diploma and chose to work rather than pursue higher education. Both women, however, instilled in me the importance of an education and a love of learning and encouraged me to go beyond their achievements. ›

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? My priorities are: God, family, and career. If my family needs me in any way, I am there for them because I know that the work on my desk will still be there when I return. I try not to miss too many of my children’s events.



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner



San Francisco WEBSITE:

Hodgdon “Education and environmental ACTIVISM go hand in hand.”


Environmental organization REVENUES: $105 million EMPLOYEES: 590 TITLE:

National Program Director EDUCATION:

BA, Indiana University FIRST JOB:


Work hard/play hard; I am very focused on forwarding Sierra Club’s mission but also love to dance, hike, and enjoy San Francisco’s wonderful restaurants. FAMILY:

I am single and very close with my parents, sisters, nephews, and cousins.

How has your education affected your career? I would not be doing what I’m doing now if I had not become a campus activist during college.

What does it take to succeed in your position? Calm, confidence, compassion, and a passion for protecting the planet

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? My mantra is strength up/stress down; working out, yoga, eating well, taking breaks and vacation, and hiking


Sierra Club


WOULD NOT HAVE THE JOY AND HONOR OF HELPING TO LEAD THE NATION’S LARGEST AND MOST INFLUENTIAL GRASSROOTS ENVIRONMENTAL ORGANIZATION TODAY IF I HAD NOT FOLLOWED IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF MY MOTHER, GRANDMOTHER, AND GREAT-GRANDMOTHER BY RECEIVING A GREAT EDUCATION AT INDIANA UNIVERSITY. So it outrages me that women in other parts of the world are routinely deprived of their right to learn and grow. This isn’t just a personal passion. As an executive with the Sierra Club, I also have a professional stake in seeing women worldwide become educated. Education and environmental activism go hand in hand. Women have always been among the fiercest protectors of the air, water and land that their families and communities depend on for health and livelihoods. A strong education focuses our instinct to defend our habitat. Knowledge makes us more powerful advocates. Among my heroes is Lois Gibbs, who took on formidable corporate and political adversaries to fight against the toxic waste she found stored under her kids’ elementary school in Love Canal, New York. She broke ground for the path I took to become, at age 37, national program director of Sierra Club. My job is to help guide our talented staff and 1.4 million members and supporters as they strive to protect beautiful places and to safeguard our water and air by moving the nation toward clean energy prosperity. It’s fun, but it's not easy. Among my sure sources of inspiration is the annual Goldman Environmental Awards. How could anyone stay discouraged when hearing award winner Ikal Angelei, 31, describe how she is successfully holding off a hugely destructive dam in her native Kenya, or when listening to Caroline Cannon, an Inuit-American, describe her struggle to keep oil companies from drilling in the fragile Arctic waters that feed her family and neighbors? It’s no coincidence that many of the countries that treat women most poorly, in part by denying them education, also have destructive environmental policies and deplorable levels of pollution. If we Americans want to save our planet, we need to make sure women worldwide gain access to the books and teachers and classrooms that will teach them the spectrum of knowledge and skills needed to take on a share of this daunting but winnable fight.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Terex Corporation



Westport, Connecticut WEBSITE:

“A college degree became a necessity back then, and is a REQUIREMENT even more today.”



Engineering REVENUES:

$6.5 billion

DUCATION MATTERS! A COLLEGE/UNIVERSITY EDUCATION MATTERS EVEN MORE! I realized how much it mattered two years after graduating from high school, faced with the reality of not being able to progress beyond an entry-level position because I had no advanced education or training. A college degree became a necessity back then, and is a requirement even more today. My advanced education, however, was more than obtaining a degree. It was an opportunity to move beyond my comfort zone, learn from academia, listen to others’ perspectives, expand my views and thinking, stretch my imagination, explore new opportunities, and apply new ideas as I progressed to a career in finance. Today, a bachelor’s degree is a prerequisite to even be considered for entry-level positions in most professional fields. A degree, however, isn’t the final answer or the finish line. I see it as one factor in a much larger equation and the starting line for where life will take you. One of the greatest changes and challenges in today’s economic times is that a college degree no longer guarantees immediate employment or a successful career in most fields of study. The degree puts you in the running for a better future, but it provides no guarantees, especially in a depressed economy. And yes, higher education is very expensive, but loans, work/study programs, and scholarships can help. The bottom line: Research shows that in terms of future earning power, the advantage goes to the person who extends his or her education. When considering a 22 to 26-yearold graduate will most likely be employed for more than 30 years, the overall impact of advanced education on his or her career will make the investment worthwhile. When planning for the future, both parents and children have a lot to think about beyond just classroom time—after-school jobs, volunteering for nonprofits, actively supporting a cause, internships, networking, and doing well—both academically and socially—while in high school and college all contribute to your future readiness for the job of your choice. It was important so many years ago when I was in school and is more important now. I cannot overestimate the importance of a good education to achieving your goals. I think everyone should at least give it the “old college try.”


23,000 TITLE:

Vice President, Global Business Services EDUCATION:

BSA, University of Michigan; MBA, Loyola University FIRST JOB:

Cashier at a local dry cleaners MY PHILOSOPHY:

Patience, persistence, and perseverance in all that I do. FAMILY:

Husband Mark and loving, supportive family

› How has your education affected your career? It was one of the early stepping stones to entering the world of finance. › What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Economics, political science, and international affairs—all critical to understanding a socioeconomic global society ›

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? No. Dedication, hard work, and a high level of confidence in myself and what I have to offer has aided me in my career in primarily male-dominated industries, such as automotive, aerospace, and construction. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Rear Admiral “CJ”

Naval Air Systems Command



DUCATION IS THE SINGLE MOST VALUABLE GIFT THAT A WOMAN CAN GIVE HERSELF WHEN PLANNING FOR SUCCESS—WHETHER SPECIFICALLY FOR THE ATTAINMENT OF CAREER SKILLS, GENERALLY FOR EASE IN INTERACTING ABOUT IDEAS WITH A WIDE ARRAY OF PEOPLE, OR OUTSIDE THE FORMAL CLASSROOM WHERE LEARNING OCCURS THROUGH DAILY INTERACTIONS WITH THOSE AROUND US. SUCCESS IN A WOMAN’S FUTURE ENDEAVORS HINGES ON BEING WELL-INFORMED, WELLPREPARED AND WELL-AWARE OF THE WORLD AROUND THEM. I owe much of my success to the teachers who motivated and encouraged me to challenge myself. Without them, I could not have achieved the success I have known. For example, my interest in math and engineering was cultivated by my eighth grade math teacher, Mrs. Aiello. She encouraged me to pursue my love for math and learn as much as possible. This positioned me to focus on STEM fields of study, currently a highly sought-after career track. Mrs. Aiello’s support of my interests led to both my undergraduate and master’s degrees in math. For me, math was a field that fed other fields and opened doors. It enabled me to become an Aerospace Engineering (Maintenance) Officer and later to pursue Systems Engineering Certification and the world of business through an MBA. The skills and analytical baseline provided by a foundation in math supported and expanded my horizons. I firmly believe that the more knowledge a person possesses, the more opportunities they will have both in a career and in their personal life. Advanced degrees level the playing field between men and women, not only by increasing earning potential but also through the networks of people and the exchange of ideas. Finally, not all education occurs in the classroom. As a lifelong learner, one of the most important lessons I have learned is the value of speaking the “language” of those around me. Gaining an understanding of the total person is essential—what are their backgrounds, where were they raised, were they an only child or the youngest of 12, do they like sports, do they have a hobby or children or pets, etc. The details of people’s lives mold them in different ways. As a leader, if you can understand the intricacies of the lives of those around you, you will relate better to people, communicate more effectively, motivate others, and achieve success as a team.



September/October 2012

How has your education affected your career? It opened doors and gave me options; I was not limited by my job opportunities.

What does it take to succeed in your position? Be able to balance technical and programmatic inputs to make holistic decisions. Flexibility, adaptability, listening, and communication

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Think about your life ten, 15, and 20 years after college and make sure your education will set you up for success then.


Patuxent River, Maryland WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Military EMPLOYEES: 42,000 TITLE: Commander, Fleet Readiness Centers and Naval Air Systems Command and Assistant Commander, Logistics & Industrial Operations EDUCATION: BS, MS, Indiana

University of Pennsylvania; MBA, Norwich University; Naval War College Command and Staff program; System Engineering Certification, California Institute of Technology FIRST JOB:

Junior high math teacher and basketball coach MY PHILOSOPHY: Education

and dedication will take you as far as you want to go. FAMILY:

12-year-old daughter

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Tammy ›

How has your education affected your career? Originally I choose the “school of hard knocks” entrepreneurial route over college and believed that not having an undergrad degree did not affect my career. However, as I became more successful, not having this credential made me feel like an imposter, so I earned my MBA in 2007. It gave me a great framework for critical thinking and problem solving.

› What does it take to succeed in your position? A creative mind, deep understanding of the human talent industry, strong collaborative and relationship building skills, a long-term view, and a well-ingrained sense of curiosity


Milwaukee, Wisconsin WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Innovative workforce solutions REVENUES: $22 billion EMPLOYEES: 31,000 TITLE: Senior Vice President, Innovation & Workforce Solutions EDUCATION: MBA, Richard

Ivey Business School at University of Western Ontario FIRST JOB:

Receptionist at a staffing company, which led me to start my own business MY PHILOSOPHY:

Never give up. Treat people how I want to be treated. Be kind. Try new things often. Be brave. Have fun. FAMILY: Put them first;

married to Murray, with daughter Katelyn




N PREVIOUS GENERATIONS, EDUCATION ALMOST CERTAINLY LED TO EMPLOYMENT, BUT SADLY THAT IS NOT THE CASE FOR SOME 75 MILLION YOUNG PEOPLE WHO ARE LOOKING FOR WORK. Granted there are varying degrees of education within this population, but the fact remains that something changed dramatically in the world of work while they were in school. Thanks to technological revolutions and globalization, jobs that were once well understood became more complex, relocated, or automated away. The widening mismatch between the expectations of young workers and employers has left a gap so large that in our company’s 2012 Talent Shortage Survey more than one third of employers reported difficulty filling their key positions. One way to narrow the gap is to create a tighter link between educators and employers. Employers must partner with all schools to create courses and curriculums that develop the skills they demand now and in the future, while simultaneously increasing young people’s exposure to how work is changing in their companies and industries. The manufacturing industry is a great example of the generational disconnect between old work models and new. A recent study published by the Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte estimated that there are 600,000 unfilled jobs in the U.S. alone. This work and the work environment are far different than young people imagine, as the manufacturing industry struggles to shake off its old image. This highly technical, analytical, and increasingly collaborative work has created a shift to knowledge-based work, but students are rarely encouraged on this career path. It is also crucial that education place greater understanding and emphasis on flexible learning models, mobile technology, and virtual work models, as fast-evolving technology is changing how, when, and where we work. Technology is oxygen for this generation, and leveraging their natural skills can lead to improved collaboration and innovation for employers. As work becomes more specialized, young people can take away the hard lessons learned from previous generations—it is their responsibility to grow their knowledge and skills long after they receive their diplomas. One way is to embrace the increasingly open and free world of education, through platforms like edX, the collaboration between Harvard and MIT that offers free online courses from both universities. While education will always play a critical role in enhancing employability, there must be increased collaboration between employers, educators, and individuals to improve the speed of building new skills and capabilities at the pace that the world of work is changing. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Donna A.

MasterCard Worldwide



Purchase, New York WEBSITE:

“While it is still true that more doors are likely


Technology company/ payments industry

to open for someone with a college degree, students should be THOUGHTFUL about their goals and how they will afford the education needed to achieve those goals.”

REVENUES: $6.7 billion EMPLOYEES: 6,700 TITLE:


Chief Diversity Officer

Y PARENTS TAUGHT ME THAT EDUCATION IS A LIFELONG ENDEAVOR THAT NO ONE CAN TAKE FROM YOU. They believed that the best investment you can make is the one you make in yourself and your education. Today, I continue to believe a lifelong commitment to learning will always be priceless. Depending on the type of career you want to have, you may or may not need a college education. But if you want to work for a corporation, it’s highly likely that a college degree is going to be a minimum requirement for consideration. That said, I firmly believe that learning happens inside and outside of the classroom. What’s most important is that you set goals for yourself and understand how you need to be educated and which skills and experiences you need to achieve them. If you want to be a restaurant chef, you may not need a college degree, but you will need real commercial kitchen experience and some formal training in technique. The state of our current economy is such that you must balance the cost of your education with your earning potential, and how you finance your education should be considered part of the educational experience. Financial literacy should be a key piece of curricula for all high school students; every student should understand how to use online tools to manage the investment made in their pursuit of a formal education. While it is still true that more doors are likely to open for someone with a college degree, students should be thoughtful about their goals and how they will afford the education needed to achieve those goals. A commitment to aligning learning with your goals and then enhancing your education throughout life is the key to success. I’m proud to say that more than 20 years after earning my undergraduate degree, I just recently completed my graduate degree. It took a great deal of commitment, but one of the informal lessons I learned was that your education will always be your best investment.



September/October 2012


BS, Tufts University; MS, Manhattanville College FIRST JOB:

Ten-week internship, BBDO advertising agency MY PHILOSOPHY:

Treat people the way you want to be treated and it will come back to you. Be open to lifelong learning. FAMILY:

Married 25 years; stepdaughter

What does it take to succeed in your position? Ability to work well with others, think strategically, act purposefully, appreciate the politics of business and be able to navigate within the system; Willingness to identify problems, suggest solutions, and know when to let others take the lead

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Yes. I learned how to play golf (humor is important!). I identified what was within my power to change and did what I could to overcome barriers.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Setting priorities and delegating; when delegating, be flexible in your standards.

When different people come together, it’s not just beautiful, it’s priceless. At MasterCard Worldwide, we find value in diversity of background, experience and thought. By supporting a global business, we take a leading role in creating innovative, efficient and secure solutions for advancing today’s global commerce.

See how diversity drives us at

MasterCard congratulates Donna Alligood Johnson for being named one of this year’s Women Worth Watching.

MasterCard, the MasterCard Brand Mark and Priceless are registered trademarks of MasterCard International Incorporated. ©2012 MasterCard

People are at the heart of our business “Amy plays a vital role in making sure our clients and customers receive the highest level of service and quality with openness, trust, integrity and a can-do attitude. Amy is a prime example of how our people are at the heart of our success and we pay tribute to her and all the Women Worth Watching.” – Vincent L. Berkeley, Jr., Chief Diversity Officer


Amy Knepp Senior Vice President, Strategic Alliance Group


Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Marla Kott, Imprint Plus • Kathryn Susan Kaminsky, PwC US • Emily Williams Knight, Kendall College • Amy Knepp, Compass Group North America Yvette Jones, Tulane University • Carolyn Kubota, O’Melveny & Myers LLP • Laura Kane, Aflac • Walease Jones, Play-Place for Autistic Children Kathleen Kopczick, BDO USA, LLP • Someera Khokhar, White & Case LLP • Uma Kotagal, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center • Sara Kearney, Hyatt Hotels Corporation




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Walease (Shell)

Play-Place for Autistic Children



S AN EDUCATION ENTHUSIAST, STABILITY, IMPACT, AND SENSITIVITY SHOULD BE KEY CHARACTERISTICS OF QUALITY EDUCATORS. The retention of such professionals is a prevailing issue throughout the world and even more so in the realm of special education. As the mother of an autistic son, this is very disconcerting, as it relates to the aforementioned characteristics—it’s a direct limitation of opportunities, advancement, and community viability. While the reasons behind this revolving door are varied—from lack of training and mentoring programs, a nearly non-existent support structure, to unmanageable workloads and deficient work conditions—the removal or constant shuffling of a special needs (even general education) student’s classroom environment disrupts those elements of familiarity and routine. In addition to the turmoil of instability, it’s an unwelcomed tax burden to the citizens of the community, who oftentimes receive unqualified “substitute” teachers, undermining the validity of the term “special education.” To have to constantly rebuild trust (amongst students), technique (for each student as well as classroom curriculum), and tenure, it has a negative effect on education quality, individual and family equity, and community vitality. Retention practices should embrace the concept of “success and satisfaction.” This premise can be maintained through initiatives such as professional development programs, effective budget structure (cuts to budgets outside of education or increases on non-essential items like candy, soda and beer) to improve working conditions, and early retirement options. Education is by far one of the largest components of state budgets and when confronted with cuts, the usual victim is special education—again, compounding the spirit of disenfranchisement already reinforced by the financial burdens of therapy costs, underservice of resources, and the everyday elements of living with, in my case, autism. Just as important, if not more than, is administrative guidance and leadership in the retention of quality educators. Teachers are an invaluable asset and should be treated and supported as such. Their life-changing philanthropy of knowledge and skills is inherently responsible for the economic, social, and political growth and development of society in general. Professional development resources can serve as a substantial advantage to alleviate feelings of isolation and uncertainty and help promote collaborative planning and effective teaching strategies. With the growth of special needs diagnoses nationwide and teacher attrition, government on a national and state level needs to implement more effective methods of inclusion, training, and impact for higher teacher retention results.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Yes, Mr. Henry Wells, my sixth grade counselor, had a profound impact on my life and career as he was a well of constant encouragement and always accessible. He shaped my confidence and instilled the ideal of “options” at a time when I was unsure and highly impressionable.



September/October 2012


Sterling Heights, Michigan WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Nonprofit EMPLOYEES:



BA, Wayne State University FIRST JOB:

Game booth employee at Michigan State Fair MY PHILOSOPHY:

Conceive. Believe. Achieve. Don’t stop! FAMILY:

Husband of 18 years, Duane; son Duane II and daughter Kori

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Tulane University



New Orleans, Louisiana WEBSITE:

“Today, our students are



still fully ENGAGED in New Orleans.”


REVENUES: $800 million

’M A COLLEGE GRADUATE—YOU WANT FRIES WITH THAT?” WAS THE SNARKY MESSAGE ON A POPULAR 1990s BUMPER STICKER. Alarm and gallows humor over the prospect of a college graduate’s years of rigorous study being rewarded by a menial, dead-end job have been around for some time. One recent study found that the proportion of underemployed college graduates has tripled over the past four decades. What is higher education’s response to this? At Tulane University our answer naturally came from a woman. Unfortunately, her name was Katrina and she was no lady. When Hurricane Katrina roared ashore on August 29, 2005 she left more than $650 million in damages at Tulane alone and nearly destroyed New Orleans, our university’s hometown. When Tulane re-opened in January 2006 we knew we could not continue to operate as we had in the past. Another woman helped us this time. Her name was necessity—the mother of invention. Much of the housing in New Orleans was destroyed and many of its businesses still closed when our students returned after the storm. So we leased a cruise liner to house our students and instead of four years of ivory tower learning, offered them a Peace Corps-like experience which required that all undergraduates use what they were learning in class to aid New Orleans’ recovery. English majors were sent into schools to tutor children who had fallen behind in their studies due to the upheavals wrought by Katrina. Psychology majors helped counsel those traumatized by the storm, architectural students designed and built hurricane-proof homes, business majors created plans for returning business owners, sociology students surveyed returning residents, and so on. What began as a way to reinvent ourselves in the wake of disaster while rebuilding the city we loved soon became an indispensable part of our mission. Today, our students are still fully engaged in New Orleans. But our idea of community has also spread, encompassing a world in which Tulane students use the skills and knowledge they acquire in the classroom to empower others to build a better world. Since the introduction of the community service requirement, applications to Tulane have soared. Graduates leave campus with a diploma and a world of experience that will serve both them and those they empower. “Helping others build a better world.” That’s our bumper sticker.


Executive Vice President for University Relations and Development EDUCATION:

BA, MBA, Tulane University FIRST JOB:

Industrial Engineering Clerk, United Parcel Service MY PHILOSOPHY:

Always be truthful, life will be easier. FAMILY:

I have been married for 31 years to Rick Jones and we have three daughters.

› What does it take to succeed in your position? It takes tenacity, energy, patience, and a cool head to be successful. › What advice would you give younger women about their education? A good liberal arts education grounded in meaningful experiential learning in co-curricular activities will prepare younger women well. I would also encourage them to find a mentor. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Kathryn Susan



› How has your education affected your career? I have a history degree, not an accounting degree, and I did the professional designations for the technical side. My degree taught me to read analytically and qualitatively, so it’s not just about the numbers; it’s also about the issues. ›

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Those that teach economic, financial, humanistic, and practical skills because when I sit down and talk to our client base, I don’t talk to them only about accounting issues. You need to have an intellectual conversation with your clients on an ongoing basis.

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Intelligence, industry knowledge, multitasking, hard work, superb mentors, and advocates. You need to be passionate about serving your clients and serving the people you work with.




Audit and assurance, consulting and tax services EMPLOYEES:

35,000 TITLE:

Partner in the Financial Services practice EDUCATION:

BA, University of Western Ontario

DUCATION, BOTH INSIDE AND OUTSIDE A CLASSROOM, WAS CRUCIAL TO MY SUCCESS. My parents emphasized education from the beginning—not just formal schooling, but also the constant focus on being passionate about learning and doing something practical. I’m lucky because I had the best role models: two well-educated parents. My mother started her career as a teacher and then later founded her own consulting firm, so she was able to be both creative and successful. My father is a surgeon. They both treated me as an equal to my brothers; things weren’t gender-specific. That was important in our household because the emphasis was always on hard work and being fair. For example, we were all forced to take typing class in high school because in my mother’s mind typing was a skill set everyone needed. At home we always discussed what we wanted to do when we grew up, so that by the time it was our first year in university, we’d already had that conversation. My parents were practical about taking education and using it in our summer jobs. I had always loved camp, so during the summer I worked in a corporate environment for two months and then for the next two months served as a camp counselor. That balance of hard work and passion was instilled in us. I’ve learned that education is more about the broader learning environment rather than just the classroom. It’s the same in the business world; at a firm like PwC, from associate level to partner level, on-the-job learning is really where you gain the most and can really deliver to your clients. I am fortunate that I had access to educational resources and good parents who wouldn’t let my passion die. In undeveloped countries, one of the first rights women lose in challenging times is their education. It’s always the woman who has to leave her education and support her family. In both developed and undeveloped countries, without that fundamental emphasis and commitment from society and community, women suffer the most. If we want a just world where everyone has access to the opportunities that education provides, then we have to make a commitment, individually and in groups—families, villages, businesses, countries—to make it so. Imagine a world in which women, through education, build literacy and numeracy, engage their wide-ranging curiosity, and are able to live their dreams. That’s the kind of world I wish for everyone.



New York City

September/October 2012


Study hard, work hard, demand the best. Be honest, ethical, and giving. FAMILY:

Husband, three children and extended family in Canada and the U.S.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner





Columbus, Georgia WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

“I am GRATEFUL for my college education


because it exposed me to diverse groups of people and ideas.”

REVENUES: 22 billion EMPLOYEES: 4,500 TITLE:

VP of Corporate Communications EDUCATION:

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Curiosity—you have to ask a lot of questions to understand an issue.

BA, Michigan State University

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? The world treats people differently. When I have confronted these differences, I chose to work harder and do my job better. Facts are not subjective. If you do a good job, there is no amount of discrimination that can hide that from those who matter.


What advice would you give younger women about their education? Keep learning new skills. Staying current on trends and understanding how to make them work for your company will pay off.

Husband, William Mullahy; Daughter, Rachel Mullahy


HEN THE SPEAKER AT MY COLLEGE GRADUATION SUGGESTED THAT WE SHOULD BE GRATEFUL TO FIND A JOB, EVEN ONE IN THE FAST FOOD INDUSTRY, I LEFT THE STADIUM. As a daughter of a university professor who grew up on campuses across the country, I knew the economic and cultural advantages of an education and I wanted a career, not a job. For the past four years I had held a variety of part-time jobs and was looking forward to finding fulfilling employment, not more of the same. It was not until I started looking for a job that I realized a college education does not guarantee a great job, but it does make learning new skills easier and landing better jobs possible. I was thrilled to start my first job as a production secretary at the ABC soap opera, One Life to Live. I had my foot in the door and was exposed to new technologies, smart colleagues, and new ideas. Over the next several years, I applied for a variety of positions and moved up in the company— opportunities that I believe would not have been available to me if I did not have a college degree or if I failed to absorb new and innovative information at every step along the way.

Production Secretary, ABC’s One Life to Live MY PHILOSOPHY:

Be pro-active, too late frequently comes too soon. FAMILY:

In 1996, I left ABC as the director of multimedia and went off to take advantage of the phenomenal opportunities at technology companies that existed at that time. My education once again paid off when the technology bubble burst and I needed to rely on all the knowledge I had accumulated over the years to start the next chapter in my career. I am grateful for my college education because it exposed me to diverse groups of people and ideas. Whether they were found in a textbook, lectures, or through osmosis, the college experience provided me with invaluable business and personal skills that gave me the confidence and ability to pry open doors to better career opportunities, better benefits, and increased earning power. As our economy evolves, and demand for professional people who can think critically, utilize and exploit technology, and work collaboratively continues to increase, students and professionals should remember that education never stops. While a college education is expensive, I would encourage young readers to think long term, because the cost of an education pales in comparison to the price you will pay for not having the skills and degree you need to compete and excel in an ever-changing world. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Sara › What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? It may sound silly, but a very basic Communications 101 class is imperative for any leader. A class like this lays the foundation and groundwork for the skills, knowledge and capabilities needed to be a strong leader. ›

What does it take to succeed in your position? A positive disposition is key to succeeding in a position like mine. Things can often get quite chaotic and can move in multiple directions at a very fast pace, but maintaining a positive outlook and a good sense of humor often leads to positive results.


Chicago, Illinois WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Hospitality EMPLOYEES:

90,000 TITLE: Senior Vice President, Brands EDUCATION:

University of New Orleans FIRST JOB:

Reservations Agent at Hyatt Regency New Orleans MY PHILOSOPHY:

Always have open and honest communication. Whether it be with family, friends, or colleagues, communication will always open the door to successful outcomes. FAMILY:

Married with two children, Jack and Mary Katilin


Hyatt Hotels Corporation



HE GREATEST INFLUENCE IN MY LIFE IN ALL THINGS, ESPECIALLY EDUCATION, WAS MY MOTHER. I have countless memories of my mother working very long, hard hours as a single parent to provide for her six children. Although we were crammed into a small house the size of a shoebox, it didn’t matter. We were our own small village, all so proud of our mother and her commitment and dedication not only to her family, but to her students whose lives she touched everyday. My mother was a teacher in the Chicago Public Schools system, working in one of the more challenging neighborhoods, where the graduation rate was notoriously low. She was determined to make a difference; she was an advocate of education and the pivotal role that teachers can play in the lives of children. My mother didn’t view her work as just a job. She frequently brought her students to our home, providing them with after-hours guidance, advice, and lessons that reached far beyond the classroom. At the same time, she was teaching us about children who were growing up in a different world to ours, helping us learn at an early age the value of understanding and embracing diversity. In her eyes, life was a classroom, teaching you to learn and grow from all of your experiences for future success. Having educators like my mother who are dedicated to making a difference in the lives they touch and influence is crucial; it lays the foundation for our future leaders and shows today’s youth that education, in any form, is critical to success. My mother taught me that education will enable many things, but especially balance—taking lessons from the classroom, home, and experiences and blending them together to create your own unique style. My job with Hyatt has taken me around the world, and during my travels, I have seen that education is the driving force behind connecting with others from different cultures and backgrounds. I’ve been extremely fortunate in my career with Hyatt to visit over 38 countries, and every time I step on and off a plane, I find myself reading, learning, asking, and engaging. Learning and understanding cultural nuances and differences is enriching and rewarding. It enables inclusion and collaboration and it can only exist where there is a desire to learn and apply what is learned. Education really has no boundaries—it’s an ever-evolving web of personal and professional life experiences, and it’s what you do with all that you know that will ultimately define the type of person and leader you will be.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


White & Case LLP




$1.3 billion EMPLOYEES:




O ADVANCE TO LEADERSHIP POSITIONS IN THE WORKPLACE REQUIRES MANY MORE PERSONAL CHARACTERISTICS AND ABILITIES THAN JUST ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE. Other factors such as sponsorship and access to opportunities are also critical. Success in the workplace requires personal traits that are not emphasized at school, including the ability to establish credibility quickly in key meetings with senior people, manage other people and processes, navigate an organization effectively, and much more. Some of these traits women have been socialized to be strong in and some less so, and often stereotypes can get in the way of women being effective leaders. Although there are many more role models for women now, what is lacking is strong sponsors (both men and women); that continues to be a focus for me. In addition to sponsorship, another focus for all organizations needs to be effective talent management with both employers and employees looking to ensure that developmental and growth needs are identified and then remedied. Although I have cultivated (and continue to cultivate) sponsors throughout my career, what I have always strived to do is play a proactive leadership role in the development of my own career. Much progress has been made in the past 30 years towards women becoming leaders in their chosen fields, but what continues to be paramount is for both men and women leaders to sponsor and mentor all talented women to achieve their full potential as well as to guide rising women leaders through the choices that they will need to make in their careers.

“To advance to leadership positions in the workplace requires many more personal characteristics and abilities than just academic PERFORMANCE.” September/October 2012


LLB, University of Southampton; The College of Law, London FIRST JOB:

Associate in a UKheadquartered law firm MY PHILOSOPHY:

Always make that extra effort. FAMILY:

Married with one child

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My HouseMaster at school, who always encouraged me to be the best that I could be.

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I believe that any woman who wishes to advance to the highest leadership positions in her field needs to make choices. Making choices does not mean it is impossible to manage one’s personal responsibilities or to have a rewarding family life. I am privileged enough to be able to make that choice and fortunate to have the resources to be able to have the excellent professional support that I need to help me manage my personal commitments.



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner HEADQUARTERS:

Charlotte, North Carolina WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Contract foodservice and support services


Compass Group North America

Knepp “The war on talent is becoming more COMPETITIVE. As a result, the demand for a college education has risen.”

REVENUES: $11 billion EMPLOYEES: 180,000 TITLE: Senior Vice President, Strategic Alliance Group EDUCATION: BA, Michigan

State University FIRST JOB:

Waitress at a country club MY PHILOSOPHY: If I can't fix

it, I'm not going to worry about it. Focus your time, energy, and passion on what you can change. FAMILY:

Husband, Tom; children, Lauren and Jake


› What does it take to succeed in your position? Ability, desire, leadership, diplomacy, tenacity, and presence › What advice would you give younger women about their education? Use your college education as the launching pad for continued learning. Don’t stop there—take on new responsibilities, challenge yourself and don’t be afraid of hard work. You’ll increase your value with continual earning. ›

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? My husband quit his job when our daughter was born, so it gave me the flexibility to create harmony between my career and our family.

HE VALUE OF A COLLEGE EDUCATION— HAS IT INCREASED OR DECREASED WITH THE RISING COST OF TUITION? While this decade has seen a nearly ten percent increase in enrollment, it has also seen an increase in tuition. Inflation has increased, the need to hire the best instructional talent and reduce turnover has become paramount, and state funding and endowments have declined, all of which contribute to the increased cost of tuition. Yet the value of a college education is as strong as ever. College graduates have an advantage in many aspects of their lives: Actual employment; earning ability; higher job satisfaction; ability to provide a role model of learning for their children; and increased overall health and well-being. The war on talent is becoming more competitive, and with it the demand for a college education. The increased need for jobs that require higher education and better communication and problem solving skills results in the need for increased talent. With companies downsizing and restructuring, the typical job applicant isn’t only up against recent fellow graduates, he or she is competing against professionals with years of practical and real life experience in the indus-



try, thus raising the bar yet again—a challenge in which just having a high school education can’t compete. A college experience is greater than the value it brings from a degree standpoint, however. A college student learns life lessons in communication, character building, teamwork, compromise, accountability, friendship, and the ability to accomplish tasks with multiple diversions going on around her. A quality college experience is a combination of an educational and character building opportunity that better prepares the individual to be successful wherever her path leads. I recently came across a Chinese proverb, “Be Careful” that I’ve paraphrased below: • Watch your thoughts, for they become your words • Watch your words, for they become your actions • Watch your actions, for they become your habits • Watch your habits, for they build your character • Watch your character, for it decides your destiny. The war on talent is fighting for the foundation built on character, ethics, and integrity. It must be enhanced with the ability to work in a team environment, write and speak well, demonstrate creative and innovative skills, and be able to solve complex problems—education matters.

September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Emily Williams ›

How has your education affected your career? Twenty-one years ago I was given a presidential scholarship to Newbury College and it changed my life. My education and the skills I learned throughout my academic career have been the foundation for my growth and development.

› Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Prof Michael Oshins at Boston University; He is an example of an educator who is committed to the success of every student. He was inspirational while I was a student and today continues to serve as a mentor and role model.


Chicago, Illinois WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Education EMPLOYEES: 488 TITLE: President EDUCATION:

AS, Newbury College; BS, Boston University; MS, Troy University; Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters, Newbury College FIRST JOB:

Creamery girl at Ed’s Country Kitchen MY PHILOSOPHY:

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader. FAMILY:

Married for 17 years to Alec Knight; six-year-old twin daughters

Kendall College

Knight “What has changed is how we THINK about educating today’s college students.”


HE VALUE OF A COLLEGE DEGREE HAS NOT CHANGED. What has changed is how we think about educating today’s college students. The bottom line is that we must prepare them for the rapid rate of change worldwide. It is imperative that the leaders in the field of higher education step forward and impress on our students the new reality: that earning a degree is just one critical step in creating a globally competitive workforce. The global demand for talented workers continues to rise exponentially and today’s graduates need to be ready to compete with students from every corner of the world. As a college president, it is my responsibility to make sure that Kendall College students graduate with the skills they need to achieve success in their careers. In our classrooms, there is an increased emphasis on students developing both the practical and analytical skills they need to thrive in a competitive global economy. Success will go to those with the desire to learn and the ability to solve problems. Graduates also need to be prepared for lifelong learning. The traditional four-year college degree is just the beginning; students must continue to learn new skills and be adaptable to a dynamic and changing workplace. I firmly believe that as an industry we need to continue to find new, innovative ways to provide our students with a high-quality education that will lead to a successful career. If we can continue to improve how we deliver our “product” and get this right, we will help millions of students realize their dreams in this global economy. This means accelerated pathways to graduation, increased online learning options to support completion and affordability, and ensuring that curriculum and experiences are global in nature. It is our responsibility to ensure that our citizens not only compete in the global economy, but that they thrive. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner



Kopczick ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? One of my first accounting classes at a community college was taught by a woman who clearly loved accounting. She had taught it for many years but was still very enthusiastic. Her teaching and passion for the subject made me choose accounting as a degree.



Chicago, Illinois WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Certified public accountants and consultants REVENUES: $572 million EMPLOYEES: 2,700 TITLE: Partner in charge of the Spokane, Washington office audit practice; Member of BDO USA, LLP Board of Directors EDUCATION:

BS, Southern Illinois University FIRST JOB:

I started working at Walgreens drug store when I was 14 through high school..

GREW UP IN A LARGE, MIDDLE-CLASS FAMILY WITHOUT A COLLEGE FUND WAITING FOR ME AFTER GRADUATION. After high school, I had two options: work in the local manufacturing plant or go to college. I never thought about not going to college. It was just an assumption that I’d be able to afford to go, whether through loans, grants or a job. At the time, my annual tuition was only a few thousand dollars. Although it seemed like a lot of money at the time, I knew I’d be able to get a good job when I graduated and it would be money well spent. Today’s high school students and their families are facing a different scenario. Without many full-time jobs available to high school graduates, a college education sounds like a great idea, but the increasing cost of college coupled with the uncertainty of job availability after college are of great concern to high school students and their families. This concern is further fueled by the fact that many college students will graduate at least $25,000 in debt and many of the same graduates will only make $30,000 at their first job. Having a $25,000 student loan to repay on a $30,000 annual salary is not easy. It’s inevitable that students may question whether a college degree is really worth it. They might wonder if they can still realize their full potential and achieve their dreams without a college education. I believe the economy will rebound—although it most likely won’t recover to pre2008 levels. Sure, college isn’t for everyone and students can still realize some professional achievements without a college degree. However, I believe the underlying principles that made a college education the right choice for me 34 years ago are still the same. A college education opens more doors and provides students more opportunities during their working life. The college experience broadens a person’s perspective about the world, other cultures, diversity and most importantly, themselves. It’s difficult to replicate this experience outside of college. But now, more than ever, students need to be strategic about their field of study. There are so many interesting courses and degrees available. Choose one you are passionate about, but also that has practical applications in the future economy. Then, the cost of college will certainly be worth it.


Seek new challenges and opportunities—what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. FAMILY: Single; two sons and

four grandchildren


“The increasing cost of college coupled with the uncertainty of job AVAILABILITY after college are of great concern to high school students and their families .”


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center



EAVING MY HOMETOWN OF BOMBAY, INDIA, I MOVED TO AMERICA IN 1971. I was newly graduated from medical school at the University of Bombay and had come here for my residency. Since my first day of medical school, I was fascinated by the idea that in one moment a baby transforms from a fetus to a newborn, and instantly, their systems start functioning independently from the mother. I decided I wanted to be a neonatologist and knew I’d have to leave home, because the field of neonatology was not as advanced in India. There was another reason for leaving home: I knew that I would need an education. My mother taught me that for women, the choices were to get educated and define what you want to do, or get married and be dependent on somebody else. I chose the path of education. Neonatology was the right mediHEADQUARTERS: cal specialty for me because I was Cincinnati, Ohio interested in systems and how things work. Years later, the WEBSITE: same interest led me to study how the healthBUSINESS: care system works and Pediatric healthcare how to improve it. Fixing healthcare. As REVENUES: $1.7 billion medical director of the EMPLOYEES: 12,654

TITLE: Senior Vice President, Quality, Safety and Transformation; Executive Director, James M. Anderson Center for Health Systems Excellence EDUCATION: MBBS, University

of Bombay in India; Pediatric residency, Children’s Hospital of Michigan; Fellowship, neonatal physiology, University of Cincinnati FIRST JOB: Internship at

Detroit General Hospital FAMILY:

Husband and two daughters

“Knowledge, when you APPLY IT, changes the world.” newborn ICU, I spent years taking care of the sickest babies and trying to make the system work better for them. I wanted to improve healthcare, but didn’t know how. The chairman of Pediatrics supported my pursuit of studying clinical epidemiology and clinical effectiveness at Harvard. While there, I gained new skills, knowledge, and an experience that changed the direction of my career. At Cincinnati Children’s I’ve been able to apply this knowledge. Focus on math and science. Even though I was struck by Americans’ can-do attitude and their openness to innovation, I think it’s still tougher for women today. I encourage girls to focus on math and science. Many women who may feel uncomfortable with math and science topics give up on those classes too soon, despite having equal ability to excel in these areas. If they stick with it, this educational background would be to their advantage, especially in medicine and research. I recognize that I’ve been lucky in my marriage and career. I have a wonderful partner, many supportive mentors, and the opportunity to make a difference, all of which have helped me to forge a rewarding path in life. My success is based on being intellectually curious, having strong training and experience, and having the courage to take risks. I encourage all women to push boundaries and not shy away from the difficult path. When you can get yourself to a place where you can take a risk, that is when people will notice you, and that is how you will make a difference.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Dr. William Schubert of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. He was one of the first educators and doctors who taught me to care about the patient first. He always said, “Do the right thing for the kid. The business will follow.”

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? Be present in the moment. Being present is a necessary part of having work/life balance. When you’re at home, it’s not always necessary to plug into work or think about work. And when you’re at work, you can’t be completely productive if you aren’t able to create some separation between work-life and home-life. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Imprint Plus



Richmond, British Columbia WEBSITE:


OFTEN MEET WITH MEN AND WOMEN IN THEIR TWENTIES WHO ARE RIDDLED WITH WORRIES ABOUT THE CHOICE OF COURSES AND CAREER; THEY AGONIZE OVER EACH JOB DESCRIPTION, THE LISTS OF DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES ASSIGNED TO THEM, AND WANT A BLUEPRINT ON HOW EACH TASK WILL GET THEM CLOSER TO “THE CAREER,” THE ONE THEY ENVISION WILL MAKE THEM HAPPY, RICH, AND EXCITED. This emphasis, unique to this generation, is quickly becoming obsolete as the economy grinds down to a slow churn, and bills still need to be paid. The great news for these youth is, every job, big or small, teaches life skills and kick starts the journey. College courses, extended high school courses, trade school courses, and university courses all make the job experience brighter and help you prepare for the moment opportunity presents itself. Remember, education in isolation is not enough; experience allows one to test the theories and hypothesis learnt. Whether the work experience is in the form of an unpaid internship, a first job that you had to take for money, or the job of your dreams, each experience is part of your education, and the course load doesn’t stop with the degree. Every year we spend money to educate and train staff at every level and expect staff to go for courses outside the workplace and expand their knowledge. Even if you needed to take a paying job right out of school there are many skill-building courses at local high schools, trade schools, and junior colleges that can add value to your CV, as well as your abilities. So stop worrying about whether you are on the right path. Every course you take, every degree worked for, every job tackled and every path taken in your twenties is part of building the skills you will be using for the next 60 years. Even the mundane—learning how to verify a credit card number, entering data, researching an idea, packing a box, or sending out a mailer—might seem trivial tasks. But think again—through conquering each task you learn to be responsible for the outcomes. In 1972 I graduated from Brandeis University. During the four years away from home I learned to do my laundry, balance my meager allowance, and get along with roommates who were not my family. After graduation I sold magazines, ran a pizza place, and then went to school at night for six years to learn accounting. The value of my economics degree took a while to kick in. I needed a job description that matched the skills I learnt from 1972–1976. Finding that job took 20 years, but when it came up, I was ready.



September/October 2012


Reusable name badge and signage systems REVENUES:

$9 million EMPLOYEES:



BA, Brandeis University; CA, McGill University MY PHILOSOPHY:

Hard work, integrity, and compassion. FAMILY:

Daughter Alissa and son Richie

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? I think every woman has felt the effects of being a female in a male-dominated economy. When I began my career I didn’t notice the discrimination; everyday things happened that would be considered discriminatory in 2012. I hit the proverbial glass ceiling; I was told that the executive offices would never be available to me while enjoying a lovely seafood dinner with the CEO. I left accounting which was and still is a predominantly male profession to work in a privatelyheld woman-owned business at 40, and have never looked back.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Get educated. This will allow you to have a broader choice in your career, and live a fuller life professionally and personally.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner HEADQUARTERS:

Los Angeles, California



Law firm REVENUES: $779 million EMPLOYEES: 800 TITLE:

Partner, White Collar Defense and Corporate Investigations Practice EDUCATION:

BA, JD, Cornell University FIRST JOB:

Mr. Donut in Ithaca, New York; first legal job was at Latham &Watkins in L.A. MY PHILOSOPHY:

Do it now. Don’t talk about things you don’t know about. FAMILY:

Husband and two terrific children

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? I think that any college background can provide a successful springboard for an aspiring leader. I think it’s important to follow your talents and your passions rather than any preconceived ideas about what you “should” study.

How has your education affected your career? All the way through school, I was a student who never spoke in public. I never did theater, I never did debate, I never even raised my hand in class. In law school, on a whim, I took a trial advocacy class. When I did the mock trial that constituted the final project for the course, I experienced a kind of epiphany. I realized that I enjoyed the experience—more than anything else I had tried in law school—and that I was good at it. I decided to explore becoming a trial lawyer.

O'Melveny & Myers LLP



ARLY IN MY CAREER, I BELIEVED MY LEGAL EDUCATION ENDED AT LAW SCHOOL GRADUATION. I now believe it will end on the day I pack up my office to retire. Throughout my career, I have been a perpetual student. This is in part because I have had a wide variety of jobs: I have worked as a government prosecutor, in academia, and in private practice. Each stage of my career has demanded that I learn new areas of the law and new skills. For 12 years, I worked as an assistant United States attorney in the Criminal Division of U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles. Because of the autonomy that federal prosecutors enjoy, I grew enormously as a young attorney. I learned how to be an effective trial lawyer and how to be nimble and comfortable on my feet in court. I wrote countless briefs and argued them in district court and in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. But prosecutors have no clients as such and no need to develop business. While prosecutors are often efficient because they lack resources, they have no information about the business aspects of practicing law. When I left the U.S. Attorney’s Office, I worked as a clinical professor at UCLA Law School. Because I was on the tenure track I pursued academic writing. My practical legal skills had no currency at UCLA; rather, conceptual analysis, discussion, and writing were highly prized. I spent two years reading and critiquing law review articles and navigating through a new and thoroughly foreign institutional environment. I then left UCLA and joined O’Melveny & Myers, where I began my education anew. Twelve years later, I am a veteran of private practice. I have become accomplished at business development, billing and collections, and client relations, although I still have much to learn. I have become a civil litigator as well as a criminal practitioner. At the same time, I have recently become involved in firm management. These responsibilities have led me to focus on the operation of the firm itself as a business. And so my education continues.

“Being a partner at a large firm is a demanding job and it is especially demanding for women with families. If you love the work, the rewards JUSTIFY the sacrifices.” September/October 2012



NYSE EuroNExt coNgratulatES

courtNEY lEimkuhlEr

for bEiNg NamEd oNE of thiS YEar’S womEN worth watchiNg

Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Sue LaVallee, AXA Equitable Life Insurance • Anne M. Lockner, Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi LLP • Pamela Liebman, The Corcoran Group • Caryl N. Lucarelli, Tech Data Corporation Laurie Ledford, Marsh & McLennan Companies • Sammie Long, Kellogg Company • Susan S. Lanigan, Dollar General Corporation • Courtney Hall Leimkuhler, NYSE Euronext Lisa Wong Lockland, Lewis and Roca LLP • Joanne Kugler, GE Power & Water • Gena Lovett, Alcoa, Inc. • Jacqueline Leung, Arrow Electronics, Inc.




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner



Fairfield, Connecticut WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Energy, aviation, healthcare, captial

General Electric Power & Water

Kugler “Just as so many WOMEN before us blazed a trail, we must now help pave the road for the future.”


$147.3 billion EMPLOYEES:


301,100 TITLE:

Chief Information Officer, GE Power and Water Business EDUCATION:

BS, Cornell University FIRST JOB: General Electric,

post college; Dairy farm MY PHILOSOPHY:

Never stop growing, work hard, execute, and have fun. FAMILY:

Married to Thomas; two children, Alex and Whitney

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My mother was not a professional educator, but she was my personal one. She taught me to work hard, strive to always do your personal best, and see the good in everyone and everything. This has worked well for me in life.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? A realization that you will never do either fully the way you would absolutely like to. A great spouse, strong time management skills, and a personal focus to utilize every minute of every day to accomplish something helps.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Don’t limit your sights by what you see today.


ROWING UP ON A DAIRY FARM IN UPSTATE NEW YORK, MY NATURAL CHOICE OF STUDY WAS FOCUSED ON THE AGRICULTURAL INDUSTRY. I obtained a degree in agricultural economics at Cornell University and am proof that often young people only pursue careers in areas to which they have been exposed. I find this to be one of our greatest challenges today for young women in STEM fields, which is why I am passionate about making a difference. Women and young girls continue to be significantly underrepresented in the STEM fields—a trend that starts early and comes at a cost to women’s careers, companies, and the nation. When I started my research, I quickly learned that women represent close to 50 percent of the workforce, but only 25 percent of the STEM labor pool, which is expected to grow over the next decade. There are numerous studies with multiple theories on why this is happening: wages, family balance, etc. I always tell my team and my children: fall in love with a problem, not a solution. Well, this is a problem that I have fallen in love with. I hope to play a small part in the solution. The research also helped me to appreciate that the window of opportunity and influence is at the middle-school age. By high school, young women have already determined if they are going to continue in the math and sciences. It is in seventh and eighth grade that you must engage and excite them about STEM and the possibilities. This is our opportunity to grow the pipeline for the future. Retaining young women’s interests, educating them in a manner that engages them, and providing them with role models are the opportunities for each of us to make a difference. Our future lies with these young talented minds, my daughter and possibly yours. As a female leader I know I have the opportunity to play a role in shaping the future for these aspiring young women. Just as so many women before us blazed a trail, we must now help pave the road for the future. I am fortunate to play a role in making this happen.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Lisa Wong ›

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Take a wide range of courses that interest you. I was a business major but studied art and architecture in Italy for a term. That experience was invaluable.

What does it take to succeed in your position? Analytical thinking, creativity, tenacity, and organization

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Prioritize, then plan and execute. And accept assistance from others. ›

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Follow your heart and pursue interests that make you happy.


Phoenix, Arizona WEBSITE: BUSINESS:


411 TITLE:


BA, University of Washington; JD, Seattle University School of Law FIRST JOB:

Receptionist at a hair salon MY PHILOSOPHY:

Be yourself. FAMILY:

Husband, daughter, and expecting a second child

Lewis and Roca LLP



BECAME A LAWYER BECAUSE I WASN’T DRAWN TO MATH AND SCIENCE (MUCH TO THE CHAGRIN OF MY MECHANICAL-ENGINEER MOTHER). Throughout my schooling, I generally preferred to write, argue and debate, rather than spend time in the lab or doing math problems. But even though my current career is not one directly in STEM, I am thankful that my education included STEM and believe STEM should be part of basic education. The Obama administration’s STEM initiatives are a step in the right direction. What would further enhance STEM education, especially for women, is to more seamlessly integrate STEM learning into overall curricula. In my experience, it seemed that students were sometimes quickly pegged as either a “liberal arts” or a “math/science” type. Both teachers and parents contributed to this pegging (which wasn’t necessarily done consciously). To counter this effect, I believe it’s important to deliberately integrate STEM education into overall learning. Math, science, and engineering concepts can be woven into other subjects. There’s no reason that STEM cannot be a part of every child’s education. With STEM being more integrated into mainstream education, each student can more naturally gravitate towards his/her interests and aptitudes. Pegging and labels will hopefully be avoided. I was classified as a liberal-arts type early on; however, I was fortunate to have also been educated in STEM. This occurred regardless of the pegging, because my schools had requirements to ensure I received a broad-based education. Sometimes it was painful (calculus still gives me a headache) but it was for my overall good. My STEM education has been very helpful in my career. As a trial lawyer, I am involved in product liability claims, commercial contract disputes, professional liability claims, and other disputes. While law school honed my written and oral, analysis and advocacy skills, I deal with STEM-related issues constantly. When I defend pharmaceutical companies, I need to understand the science behind the issues. In product liability cases, I have to learn the engineering and technology behind products. In business disputes, I deal with spreadsheets that sometimes involve complex calculations. STEM is everywhere, as should be STEM education. As a result, many students who may not initially appear to be “math/science” types may in fact emerge as STEM scholars. Furthermore, even if the net numbers of those directly involved in STEM careers does not increase, society as a whole will benefit from increased STEM education and awareness. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Susan S.

Dollar General Corporation

Lanigan › How has your education affected your career? Law school prepared me well for my chosen career. Undergrad prepared me to think critically, interact socially, and enjoy myself in the process. ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Professor Sentell, one of my first-year law school professors. At first, he scared me into being prepared every day. By the end of the year, I was prepared every day because I wanted to live up to his standards.



Goodlettsville, Tennessee WEBSITE: BUSINESS:


$15 billion EMPLOYEES:

95,000 TITLE:

Executive Vice President, General Counsel EDUCATION:

JD, University of Georgia School of Law FIRST JOB:


Show up and listen. FAMILY:

Husband Greg; two boys, Drew and Alex

HEN I CONSIDER WHY EDUCATION HAS BEEN IMPORTANT IN MY LIFE AND HOW IT HAS HELPED ME AS A WOMAN SUCCEED PROFESSIONALLY, THREE THINGS STAND OUT. First, my education experience generally taught me that I was as “smart” as most other folks. Second, my “education” in sports, playing and learning about many, made me comfortable in situations I might not otherwise have been. Finally, learning always has and always will remind me of how much I don’t know. I was raised in a traditional 1960s Southern family. My father worked. My mother stayed home. A woman’s place was in the home, and the pastor taught that a wife should be subservient and meek. Men ruled the world, yet I always suspected that my mom had more to offer than she revealed. As I fell in love with learning, and succeeded in school as a result, I realized quickly that the traditional ways weren’t necessarily rooted in nature or necessity. In fact, from what I observed in elementary school, girls held their own, whether the subject was science, math, or kickball. It was only when I became a teenager that I saw the traditional roles emerge in the classroom and on the fields. By then, though, I wasn’t buying it. My continued success in school, along with the success of other girls and women I admired, was evidence that, as long as I was willing to show up, I would be able to participate in what the world had to offer. I also actively participated in team sports. Sports were and are a huge part of my life, and when I’m not playing, I’m usually watching. My sports education taught me to love the drama, to understand the strategy and the glory, and to appreciate the talent and the dedication of the player and the devotion of the fan. My willingness to play softball and golf with my male colleagues, along with my understanding of and eagerness to discuss other sports that they love, has helped me create bonds and connections with them separate from work. I wouldn’t fake an understanding or love of sports for this reason, but it has most decidedly been a nice byproduct of my passion. Finally, every day I learn something I didn’t know the day before, and every day I am reminded of how much I don’t know. Nothing is more important to my success than those two things.

“Finally, every day I LEARN something I didn’t know the day before, and every day I am reminded of how much I don’t know.”



September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company

LaVallee “We have to be careful to not let TECHNOLOGY take the place of interpersonal relationships.”




Financial protection, wealth management and retirement savings REVENUES: $17.9 billion EMPLOYEES: 10,000* TITLE:

Senior Vice President, Retirement Savings EDUCATION:

AA, Cazenovia College; Series 6 & 26 FINRA registrations FIRST JOB: Jerry’s Restaurant

in LeRoy, New York MY PHILOSOPHY: Love and

enjoy life, you only get one. FAMILY:

Husband, Glen; children: Amy, Adam, Brooke, Orion and Carter; granddaughters: Tatum and Ella

DUCATION IS IMPORTANT TO TECHNOLOGICAL AND BUSINESS EVOLUTION. At an early age, I developed a strong love for reading from my mother, who literally reads three books a week. She always encouraged my siblings and me to read as much as possible. And we were always encouraged by both parents to do well in school. This was just expected. To me education comes in many forms: formal education, work, and life experiences. Through these experiences you learn how to interact with others, be a part of different communities, and to execute, whether it is a work project or charitable event that you are organizing. Today’s world is fast paced with information at your fingertips. If you need something, Google it and get your answer. Smartphones and tablets will dictate a message for us without even writing it down. You can text a person a message and you can even put a smiley face in it to show emotion—but only the basics. Technology is vital to business success. The challenge I believe we face is not losing the art of communication and how to actually talk with each other. Often career success will come from fostering and collaborating with people to pursue a common goal. Relationships are critical and need to be formed through multiple methods of communication. It is important to learn the value of relationship building, something that can get lost in the communication provided by today’s technology. Sometimes a text or email can be interpreted as something negative, and it isn’t until you speak to someone directly that you realize that wasn’t at all the case. We have to be careful to not let technology take the place of interpersonal relationships. Today’s educators need to understand that students require a different and more diverse set of skills to compete with the rapidly changing nature of the work environment, seemingly unlimited technology, and competition in the global job market. They must also instill the importance of traditional conversation. When I interview a candidate for a new position, I want to ensure they have the appropriate education, skills, and experience for the job. Equally important is their character, personal traits, behavior, ability to effectively communicate, and collaborate as a team. A strong candidate will not only exhibit the above, they will be self-confident, exhibit innovative tendencies, show respect for others, and possess problem-solving skills. › Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My college professor, Dr. Green. He encouraged me to be the very best that I can be, to always give more and then be proud of my accomplishments. › How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? This is challenging. I make commitments at home and at work, and I try my very best to honor them. I am extremely organized.

*Includes sales personnel

September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Marsh & McLennan Companies



TTRACTION AND RETENTION ARE TWO SIDES OF THE SAME COIN. I’ve learned that attracting skilled and dedicated talent is not an end unto itself, but a beginning. My company’s talent priorities are similar to those of a public school system in that our primary asset is people—knowledgeable, engaged colleagues are vital to success. Turnover and attrition weigh not only on the bottom-line—through recruitment and replacement expenses, loss of intellectual capital, and productivity costs—but also on the quality of the work. In the case of U.S. public schools, these costs take their toll not only on local budgets, but on teachers, administrators, and, most importantly, students. Today’s new hires, whether they are risk consultants or physics teachers, expect more from their jobs than just a paycheck. In other words, employees want to feel their organization—whether it’s in the public or private sector— has their best interests at heart. This in turn engenders higher levels of colleague engagement and commitment. So how can public schools keep their best and brightest teachers? Schools, like other organizations, can bolster their retention rates by focusing on key drivers of colleague engagement: Leadership and Direction Employees need to have a clear understanding of an organization’s strategy and objectives—and how they, as an individual, can support those objectives. School leadership should not only communicate often and honestly about challenges and opportunities, but encourage two-way communication with teachers. Career Development and Training Even the most talented professionals were once new and inexperienced. Providing colleagues with opportunities to develop or renew their skills can increase confidence and satisfaction levels. Formal and informal mentorship relationships across experience levels can provide powerful opportunities for personal and professional growth. Create a Culture of Respect The key to lasting engagement is to create a community that shares ownership and pride in student and school success. Rewards and incentives are important and appropriate satisfiers, but employee empowerment is a key motivator. Give people the tools, trust and opportunities to make decisions, contribute ideas, and feel part of the process. The advice I would give new teachers is the same advice I would give any new employee: Be creative and adaptable. Raise your emotional intelligence. Listening is more important than talking, especially if you’re new to the job. Be learning-agile. And most importantly, love what you do.



Professional services REVENUES:

$11 billion EMPLOYEES:

53,000 TITLE:

Chief Human Resources Officer EDUCATION:

BA, Florida Atlantic University; MBA, University of Miami FIRST JOB:

I began my HR career at Bank of America (then known as NationsBank). FAMILY:

My husband Patrick and our wonderful extended family, including my twin sister, Mary


How has your education affected your career? I was one of those lucky individuals who found what they wanted to do early in my college career. After attending some information sessions, including HR, I saw the connection to improving business results through people. It just clicked for me and I've never looked back. I then worked for about a year and knew I needed a deeper knowledge of business so I went to grad school at night. Being able to speak the language of the business leaders I worked with really helped me stand out.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Courtney Hall


Leimkuhler “Access to a good education is more ESSENTIAL, but for most Americans, more elusive, than ever.”



Financial services REVENUES: $3 billion EMPLOYEES: 3,000 TITLE: Executive Vice President, Head of Strategy and Implementation

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Small seminars; the content matters less than the format. Putting yourself in a position to get one-on-one coaching from a knowledgeable professor and to be forced to articulate and defend your point of view is extremely valuable and good practice in a safe environment. Play sports; teamwork is critical to success in life.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? I allow my personal and my professional life to mix—the effort to keep them separate is often not worth it. I am comfortable bringing my personal life to work in some respects—it helps me keep perspective and I think it’s beneficial to show more of the human side of myself to my colleagues.


HIGH-QUALITY, ACCESSIBLE EDUCATION IS CRITICALLY IMPORTANT TO SOCIETY AND THE NATIONAL IDENTITY. Unfortunately though, we all know our system is not working as effectively, and it often feels as though the inertia can be overwhelming. But as they say, “when there’s no wind, start rowing,” we can all put our oars in the water. Access to a good education is more essential, but for most Americans, more elusive, than ever. More than simply knowledge, education instills the confidence to offer up your ideas and creates a toolkit with which to assimilate new information and skills to adapt to accelerating rates of change. Fortunately, numerous efforts to reform the U.S. education system are underway and much of this is best left to professionals with first-hand experience of teaching and administration. But we also must acknowledge that even if reforms are successful, school curricula may not be able to keep up with the pace of change in business and technology. It therefore seems that we need a parallel track to in-classroom reforms: investment outside classrooms to build better bridges to the “real world.” As professionals, we can make a major contribution to this parallel effort, serving as role models and


AB, MBA, Harvard University FIRST JOB:

Analyst at Goldman Sachs MY PHILOSOPHY: “Nothing

great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.” — Emerson FAMILY: Married to

Charles de Segundo; we are expecting our first child in August

hands-on engineers that build those bridges and help youth realize all that their talents promise to society. One way is to support organizations like Sponsors for Educational Opportunity (SEO) or Futures and Options (which I serve on the board of ), which are powerful additions to the existing education infrastructure. F&O, for example, gives underprivileged Manhattan high school students career-readiness, resumé and job-skills training before placing them in paid internships. The students receive valuable work experience and mentorship that connects their education to practical skills, allowing them to envision what options their continued education can create for them. F&O admits “average” students—not the cream of the crop—and the result is high school graduation rates of 100 percent and college enrollment of 93 percent. F&O demonstrates the power of augmenting traditional education with real world exposure. Comprehensive education, inside and outside of the classroom, is critical for the success of future entrepreneurs, CEOs, and business owners. By enabling students to envision a path to professional success, we can increase the likelihood that they will embrace education as a means to get there. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Jacqueline ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Confucius said, “Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in getting up every time we do.” Confucius was a Chinese philosopher who stressed self-improvement and education as a focal point in shaping people’s lives.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Balancing career and home responsibilities takes planning and reaching agreement with my family. My family plays an important part in enabling my success, and they share common goals with me


Englewood, Colorado WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Global technology provider REVENUES:

$21.4 billion EMPLOYEES:

15,700 TITLE: Vice President, China/Hong Kong region, Global Components EDUCATION:

BS, National Taiwan University FIRST JOB:

Sales engineer MY PHILOSOPHY:

Never give up. FAMILY:

Married with one daughter


Arrow Electronics, Inc.



OST SCHOOLS ARE GENERALLY MAKING SINCERE EFFORTS IN PREPARING STUDENTS TO EMBRACE A CHANGING GLOBAL ECONOMY AND ENTER THE WORKFORCE. Throughout my career, I have come into contact with hundreds of new graduates. I find most of them are energetic, enthusiastic, and eager to learn and do well. Schools may be able to achieve better results if they reach out and maximize support from the business community and alumni networks to develop internship, summer jobs, and mentoring programs, in addition to aligning the course curricula with basic skill competencies to meet the expectations of employers. Among career preparation programs, I find internships are among the most effective programs to help students gain on-the-job experience. Internship placement allows students to work in a company or organization for a period of time. Students are given the opportunity to interact with the company management team, coworkers, customers, and the supplier community. They acquire hands-on experience in a real world working environment. By performing actual business tasks assigned to them, students will be able to gain a better perspective of the business challenges and obstacles presented in the business environment. I encourage schools to offer counseling sessions before and after internships. Counseling sessions are effective to help students understand the skill sets that are needed for career placement and identify areas in which they should improve before they enter the workforce. Internship programs are excellent initiatives for companies and organizations in developing young talent. Studies have shown that employers find some students lack basic skill sets required for their job roles. I believe students stand a better chance to be recruited and advance in their career if they are able to develop better business writing and presentation skills. I encourage schools to regularly reach out to companies to refine the format of these courses to incorporate more real life business cases. Most schools recognize the power of its alumni network for fundraising purposes. I believe schools should further leverage their alumni networks to offer regular career talks and mentor programs. As technology and business continue to evolve, changes are inevitable. Schools now face unprecedented challenges with how to equip students to enter the workforce. If schools reach out to work more closely with the business community, we can make much more progress in the journey of nurturing and developing students into the social, business, and political leaders of our future.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


The Corcoran Group

Liebman “Technology offers a proven solution to reduce educational costs, which is why many schools are now incorporating technology into every aspect of ACADEMIC life.” ›

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? In the kind of work I do, leaders should have a meaningful understanding of politics, economics, and business as essential strengths in their thinking. Any courses that teach you to think in new ways, to open your mind to new experiences, to journey into places you’ve never gone before—intellectually speaking—are good for you. I’m also a believer in the value of philosophy, literature, foreign language, and history as important subjects for growing a smart mind.


CHOOLS, LIKE BUSINESSES, NEED TO STAY ON TOP OF WHAT’S GOING ON IN THE WORLD TO BE RELEVANT AND SUCCEED. If schools don’t adjust their curricula to emphasize technology and continue to teach the same way they have done, students will suffer. In the past, the U.S. prided itself on having the best-educated students and consequently the best work force. Based on recent studies this position is slipping dramatically. The driving forces behind business and education must work together to reform the current education system so that even the youngest students are prepared for their lives ahead. American educational institutions at all levels need to step into the 21st century and embrace technology. Technology has proven to bring critical value to both students and teachers. It is a powerful lever that can improve educational standards and reduce skyrocketing education costs. With student loan debt at a debilitating all-time high, graduates are leaving school saddled by a significant financial burden before they begin their adult lives. Technology offers a proven solution to reduce educational costs, which is why many schools are now incorporating technology into every aspect of academic life. Those who don’t embrace technology will be left behind. At Corcoran we made a commitment to invest in technology early on. We went online in 1996, becoming the first New York real estate firm to have a website. Today, 89 percent of all real estate searches conducted by people looking to buy or rent a home are conducted online. Corcoran’s success is a result of agents being trained to be tech-savvy and use technological tools to build strong and profitable businesses. The business world has learned that incorporating technology into the business model gives an edge, keeps the company competitive, and leads to a successful future. We can provide our children the best education available. With technology we have the means. Educators need to recognize and embrace technology so America can once again be known as home to the best students and workers in the world. September/October 2012



Residential real estate firm EMPLOYEES:

2,100 TITLE:

President & Chief Executive Officer EDUCATION:

BA, University of Massachusetts FIRST JOB:

Real estate agent with The Corcoran Group MY PHILOSOPHY:

Those who don’t embrace change will be left behind. FAMILY:

Husband, Dr. Michael Krouse, and two daughters



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Anne M.

Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi LLP


“Women often have ATTRIBUTES that create positive cultures that lead to success.” ›

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? As someone who has a liberal arts degree, I’d suggest taking more business-related classes. Of course, if I had a business degree, I’d suggest more liberal arts classes. A well-rounded curriculum is the goal.

› What does it take to succeed in your position? A clear understanding of my clients' objectives, creativity to solve the problem, the intuition to know which battles to pick, and a good sense of humor ›

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? While rare, when opposing counsel makes comments that I doubt he would say to a man, I see it as his weakness that can be effectively exploited to my advantage.


Minneapolis, Minnesota WEBSITE: BUSINESS:


748 TITLE:


BA, University of Minnesota; JD, Georgetown University Law Center FIRST JOB:

Drug store cashier MY PHILOSOPHY:

Do everything with compassion. FAMILY:

Husband, Brian; black Lab, Hailey



NE OF THE REASONS FOR THE DISCREPANCY BETWEEN WOMEN’S GRADUATE DEGREES AND WOMEN IN LEADERSHIP POSITIONS RESULTS FROM WOMEN BEING LESS WILLING TO STAY IN A CULTURE THAT SEEMS UNFAIR OR UNSATISFYING. There is nothing inherently wrong with this tendency. To the contrary, I have nothing but respect for someone—man or woman—who has the self-awareness to know that she would be happier in a different environment and makes that happen. The next step in achieving true equality in leadership positions is to start creating environments with positive cultures that value the vast array of assets that women, in particular, bring to the table. Women often have attributes that create positive cultures that lead to success. I have found that if I am on a team made up of mostly women, they are often very successful at creating a cohesive, cooperative unit that can tackle any challenge effectively. They listen to one another, collaborate, ensure that each person gets good opportunities, and do not focus on who gets credit for the success of the project. The result is a loyal group that is willing to enjoy successes and suffer defeats together— making the environment more satisfying and fulfilling. And make no mistake, the men on these teams enjoy the positive aspects of the resulting culture as much as the women. These teams work as hard, as innovatively, and have as much intellectual horsepower as any teams I have ever worked with. But they build a culture that generates more energy than it takes—making it a sustainable and satisfying place to spend a career. The most successful companies and firms of the future are going to be the ones that figure out how to maintain and harness the incredible amount of leadership potential that is currently walking out the door on an all-too regular basis, because the environment takes more energy than it gives. Just saying, “she wasn’t cut out for this place,” without evaluating whether perhaps it is the “this place” that needs improvement is short-sighted and companies and individuals who default to saying that without further analysis do so at their peril. Women, find each other and work together. Take your strengths—your intelligence, creativity, compassion, and leadership—and create great cultures that drive great results. Employers, hire, and promote these women. Otherwise, your competition will.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Kellogg Company



REPARING YOUNG PEOPLE TO SUCCEED IN THE WORKPLACE REQUIRES A BALANCE OF ACADEMIC WORK, PRACTICAL APPLICATION, AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF INTERPERSONAL SKILLS. We also need to equip students earlier with a better understanding of businesses and how they operate in the global arena. I see significant value in students gaining practical experience in the workplace. This can be gained through internship programs, for example. One of the best experiences my daughter had was a four-month internship with a local public safety department. This not only informed her about the role of public safety but introduced her to the differences in society, and perhaps most importantly, gave her a deeper understanding of the following key critical skills: communication and language skills, like writing, presentations, dialogue and different languages; the importance of understanding cultural differences and similarities; listening and understanding others points of view; and identifying and solving problems, setting goals, and being accountable. Rapidly evolving technology and business priorities make it difficult for curricula to keep pace. As business leaders we also have to understand how this impacts our workforce. So what can we do to be more proactive with schools and colleges to prepare students to enter the workplace? Here are a few suggestions: • Create partnerships with schools and colleges, providing context and influence to shape curricula • Influence government policy on critical aspects of the curricula • Encourage student placement in hands-on learning environments where classroom theories are brought to life. For example, internships and job-shadowing opportunities • Advocate the principle of college students working in industry for a year, ideally abroad, to help consolidate theory and practice, and broaden their global knowledge I have been very fortunate to work in different countries and cultures and within a number of industries. Businesses around the globe face similar issues of attracting young talent. However, I think some relatively simple changes within the high school curricula could have a big impact on the immediate effectiveness of these young people entering the workplace. Let’s strive to get the balance right by focusing some attention on interpersonal skills, practical experiences, and learning business basics. September/October 2012

What does it take to succeed in your position? As a leader, surrounding yourself with a great team and being flexible and adaptable are all key to success.

› Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Certainly discrimination exists, and earlier in my career I experienced it, but having worked around the world, I appreciate how women in the United States are valued, respected, and treated more equally than in other countries. ›

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I prioritize and uphold my commitments. My family and the company understand at times the priorities change, but I’m always where I say I’ll be.


Battle Creek, Michigan WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Food and beverage REVENUES: $13.2 billion EMPLOYEES: 31,000 TITLE: Vice President, Human Resources, Kellogg North America EDUCATION: Certificate in

Personnel Management (United Kingdom) FIRST JOB: Criminal records

and fingerprints team, Greater Manchester Police, UK MY PHILOSOPHY:

Be open to every opportunity you get. You will learn and develop from each one. FAMILY: Husband, Kevin

and daughter, Charlotte



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Alcoa, Inc.

Lovett ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Mrs. Taylor, my fifth grade teacher, has had a profound impact on my career. Her belief in my abilities at such a young age ignited a confidence that I carry even today.

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? I have occasionally experienced bias regarding my ability to successfully deliver in what is predominantly a male-dominated industry. Some of the assignments I have had were downright ugly and clearly not for the faint of heart. However, one’s actions speak much louder than words. As such, I focus on being someone my colleagues, peers and team views as a resource.



New York City WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Aluminum REVENUES: $25 billion EMPLOYEES: 61,000 TITLE: Chief Diversity Officer EDUCATION:

BA, The Ohio State University; MBA, Baker College Center for Graduate Studies FIRST JOB:

Shareholder Services Representative at The Boston Company MY PHILOSOPHY:

Marinating is for pickles, not people. Open dialogue promotes effective communication. FAMILY:

AM PASSIONATE ABOUT EDUCATION. My education unlocked opportunities for me and gave me confidence to compete. It has opened my mind to new ideas and with new ideas come innovation. I’ve had the extraordinary experience of being the first female and African American to run one of Alcoa’s largest aluminum manufacturing plants located in Cleveland. I’ve lived the story. I’m an example of what women and minorities can achieve with an education. As chief diversity officer, I am looking for the best and brightest people to bring to our organization. Our innovation backbone relies on employees educated in STEM disciplines: science, technology, engineering and math. Partnering with stakeholders is key to attract, develop, and retain talent. Sponsors are one way I am fueling STEM development. Throughout time, executive champions have helped men with advancing their careers. Part of my job is pairing women and minorities with influential, successful sponsors. Mentors can coach, but sponsors actively have skin in the game. They take it upon themselves to help develop one's career and nurture its growth. Alcoa was able to attract 11 students for summer internships and offered six candidates full-time positions when the National Society of Black Engineers, in partnership with Alcoa’s African-American Heritage group, held its career fair in Pittsburgh. Finally, involvement in community organizations is invaluable. As a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Education Committee in Cleveland, we focus not only on music, but promote the value of a STEM education in the school system starting in kindergarten. The educational program at Cuyahoga Community College, where I am a vice chairperson on its foundation’s board, is geared toward workforce preparedness largely for the underserved, older, mainly female students who want to advance their education and return to the workforce. The best and the brightest STEM candidates are challenged, recognized, rewarded and encouraged to develop to their full potential. A STEM career offers tremendous opportunities for women and minorities to take on leadership roles to ensure the next generation of leaders includes diverse viewpoints.

Husband of 21 years; one son who is a college freshman at DePaul University

“Marinating is for PICKLES, not people.

Open dialogue promotes effective communication.” 146


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Caryl N.

Tech Data Corporation



Clearwater, Florida WEBSITE:



S THE MOTHER OF A HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT AND A LEADER AT A GLOBAL TECHNOLOGY DISTRIBUTOR, I SEE THE OPPORTUNITY FOR OUR EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS TO MODERNIZE THEIR CURRICULA TO BETTER PREPARE STUDENTS FOR LIFE AFTER GRADUATION. The rapid evolution of new technology and the ever-quickening pace required to compete in the global marketplace has brought about a new level of convergence between technology and business. “Prosumers” (professional consumers) have emerged in the workplace with the expectation that companies will conform to their individual computing preferences. The proliferation of personal mobile devices has created a new generation of business professionals that integrate work tools and social media into their communications and processes. This digitized humanity requires radical rethinking of business cultures, communication protocols, collaboration zones, and connectivity patterns. As the technical landscape of the dynamic marketplace changes, so do the fundamental competencies required to compete in the new business world. Students adapt rapidly to technological changes. They think digitally, interact virtually, collaborate simultaneously with technology and people, and multi-task at a dizzying rate. Their 24-hour connectivity instills a borderless mindset insensitive to traditional time zone restrictions. They quickly synthesize data from multiple sources to formulate new ideas and solutions. So how do schools leverage this technical aptitude? I believe that technology can be a great economic equalizer. It makes learning accessible from any place, at any time, to any student, while offering high-quality resources and interactive experiences. Tablets, laptops, and broadband access lighten the burden of heavy textbooks and allow curricula to be updated more frequently while engaging students with learning through simulations and real-time assessments. Online content delivery outside of the classroom compresses learning time, allowing for more skill building to follow in the classroom. This instills teamwork, logical reasoning, and complex problem solving leading to strategic thinking and quality decision making. In my opinion, we’ve reached an inflection point at which it’s imperative that technology and education converge to evolve curricula and its method of delivery. Progressive direction from educational systems is needed now. These advancements will ensure that our children have the required technological skills and competencies required to transition successfully into the increasingly complex world in which they will compete. September/October 2012

Wholesale distribution of technology products and services REVENUES: $26.5 billion EMPLOYEES: 8,500 TITLE:

Vice President, Human Resources EDUCATION:

BS, Clemson University; MS, University of New Haven FIRST JOB:

Working in my grandmother’s shop, The Country Mouse MY PHILOSOPHY:

Smile if you win; If you lose, laugh at yourself. FAMILY:

Husband Randy and daughter Marley

What does it take to succeed in your position? Innovation, managerial courage, motivation, tenacity, business acumen, results, flexibility, collaboration, critical thinking, passion, and common sense

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I strive for “harmony” rather than “balance” in my life, enjoying every moment to the fullest in any environment. › What advice would you give younger women about their education? Pursue your passion and you will be fulfilled and successful in your career.



Opportunities in Engineering & Project Management We understand that sustained success depends on growing and diversifying the engineering workforce of tomorrow. That’s why Bechtel partners with global nonprofit organizations that support science, technology, engineering and math education.


We also invest in the success of our people. Our diverse global community offers room to learn and grow as you deliver some of the largest, most complex projects in the world. We work together and our projects make a difference to millions of people around the world. Are you ready to make history?


Discover more at Bechtel is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer (AA/EOE).



Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Ailie MacAdam, Bechtel Limited • Joan Menke-Schnaenzer, ConAgra Foods • Carol Lynch, Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation • Lauralee E. Martin, Jones Lang LaSalle Christine Liu McLaughlin, Godfrey & Kahn, S.C. • Kalpana M. Merchant, Eli Lilly and Company • Lisa A. Madden, KPMG LLP • Michele M. Merrell, Brightstar Corporation Linda Mattes, Alliant Energy • Vonya McCann, Sprint Nextel Corporation • Liz McCarthy, New York Life • Laurie McCall, Harris Corporation




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation



East Hanover, New Jersey WEBSITE:

“My advice to every student is to make the most of the university experience. Study what you ENJOY.”


Pharmaceuticals REVENUES:

$9.5 billion TITLE:

› How has your education affected your career? My education provided a strong foundation in the biological sciences, as well as the opportunity to live and learn with people from diverse backgrounds. Both are invaluable. › What does it take to succeed in your position? Business is complex, and no one has all the answers. It’s essential to appreciate diversity, create an environment of inclusion, and value each person’s contribution. ›


Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Each of my science teachers had a significant impact on my chosen path, firstly in enabling me to see that I did have a choice, and then advising me to follow my passions.

BELIEVE THAT WE ALL HAVE THE POWER TO CREATE OPPORTUNITIES BY DETERMINING WHAT WE WANT AND NEED—AND DOING WHAT’S NECESSARY TO REACH SPECIFIC GOALS. Sometimes it takes time to figure things out, which is why I’m a passionate advocate of education, both formal book learning and real life experience. Over the years, I’ve learned each provides invaluable lessons that help us know and understand ourselves and succeed in all aspects of life. Today, I see so many young people worried about what to study in university and which careers present the best opportunities. There’s good reason for their concern, given current economic conditions and the steep cost of higher education. Yet educational credentials are essential for entry and advancement in many fields, including my own. My advice to every student is to make the most of the university experience. Study what you enjoy. Meet people with different backgrounds and beliefs. Learn what it means to be on your own. When I started university, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. I studied biological sciences—one of the STEM fields in which women are so underrepresented—because I was



Vice President & Head of Specialty Business Unit, U.S. General Medicines EDUCATION:

BSc, University of Sheffield, United Kingdom FIRST JOB: Medical Sales

Representative MY PHILOSOPHY:

Create your own opportunities and accept no limits. FAMILY:

Married with a close extended family.

interested in and excelled at them. Shortly after graduation, I joined Ciba-Geigy Pharmaceuticals, now Novartis, and the company was willing to sponsor me in furthering my formal education. But my professional experience quickly outpaced the educational work, so that’s where I decided to focus. I learned that you need exposure to many different experiences and types of learning, and there’s a right time to draw on them all. I have also learned that it’s important to ask for what you want in your career, which can sometimes be challenging for women. At one point, I felt the strong need to move on. I did my research, sat down with my manager, articulated what I wanted to do, and described my ideal job. Within a month, I had a new position that fit the description exactly. I encourage women to explore all possibilities, including the tremendous educational and career opportunities presented in STEM-related fields. I also believe they need to have the courage to take chances and ask for what they want. Only then can they take advantage of the learning experiences that present themselves each day—whether at work, home, or school—and create their own opportunities.

September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner HEADQUARTERS:




Civil engineering


“I have had the privilege of being part of MOTIVATED teams working together with a common purpose of building something that will directly contribute to the way we live.”


$32.9 billion EMPLOYEES: 53,000 TITLE:

SVP Bechtel Civil Crossrail Delivery Director EDUCATION:

B.Eng, Bradford University FIRST JOB:

Process engineer on a waste treatment plant MY PHILOSOPHY:

Stay authentic (true to yourself) in every decision and action. FAMILY:

I have a wonderful and supportive husband and two lovely children.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My primary school teacher went out of his way to nip any gender stereo typing in the bud. This reinforced my parent’s approach (my father is an engineer); it never occurred to me that engineering was a weird choice for a girl.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Give yourself options; don’t be put off by gender stereotypes. Follow your heart and choose something you enjoy. It’s very important to get credentials—this can be hard work but it’s certainly worth it.

Bechtel Limited


T IS AN UNFORTUNATE FACT THAT THERE IS A SHORTAGE OF WOMEN IN STEM. It is unfortunate for a number of reasons. Not only are women missing out on a meaningful and rewarding career, but the industry is missing out on the diverse contribution that can be gained from well-educated, strong and intelligent female leaders. I think there are several causes behind this situation, not least the culture and information that supports decisions being made by schoolchildren about course subject choices. There is still unacceptable gender stereotyping in schools driven mainly by ignorance of what a career in STEM really means for both men and women, and ignorance that women can build a very successful career in STEM. I have had the privilege of being part of motivated teams working together with a common purpose of building something that will directly contribute to the way we live (in my case, transportation). It is up to people like me to visit schools, talk about my experiences, and paint a vivid picture of how vibrant STEM careers are—and explain that, contrary to some opinion, STEM is not boring, it is fun and rewarding. In the past there has been a lack of high-profile female role models in STEM, which has not helped to give females confidence that STEM is a viable and sustainable career option. As the number of women moving into senior management positions increases and these women become more empowered to not accept the status quo and influence corporate culture, I predict more women will be attracted to the excitement of a career in STEM, confident that the industry will support them. We as individuals can make sure we visit schools. In the UK we have a successful Stemnet program which organizes volunteers to visit schools and colleges and engage in STEM. In addition, however, those projects involving STEM should take responsibility to make a difference. The hope is that we are inspiring those girls with an early natural tendency towards STEM to stick with it, ignore the stereotyping, follow their heart, and join us in contributing towards building a better world. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Lisa A.

New York City WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Audit, tax, and advisory services

Madden “Our educational systems around the world need to SUCCESSFULLY entice, excite, and educate both women and men”

EMPLOYEES: 23,000 TITLE: National Practice Leader, Mergers & Acquisitions Tax Practice EDUCATION:

BS, MBA, Tulane University FIRST JOB:

Tax associate at KPMG MY PHILOSOPHY:

Whether at work or at home, you need to practice being part of a team. Know each team member’s strengths and play to them, and be sure the team is diverse enough that the strengths cover all the team needs. FAMILY:

I have four beloved children, and I’m the youngest of five children, and the only girl.

› What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Those that give you some tangible skill. As a leader, you need a “calling card” that makes you relevant, beyond your “leader-likeness.” ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Candidly, not really. I had great teachers, but I was also a great student— valedictorian or in the top one percent of my high school, college, and graduate school. I developed the ability to figure out how to excel in every class and every environment, and that became a key career skill for me.




VER A 22-YEAR CAREER AND AS A FEMALE PROFESSIONAL, I’VE ALWAYS VIEWED WOMEN AND MEN AS IDENTICAL IN THE WORKPLACE—BOTH GENDERS EQUALLY CAPABLE, BOTH GENDERS INTERCHANGEABLE ON ANY TASK OR IN ANY ROLE. As a mother of two boys and two girls, you would think that same view of gender “identicality” would carry through to my views on their education. And it would have, until I read some of the work of a respected family physician and PhD, Dr. Leonard Sax, and, in particular, his book Why Gender Matters. I was also fortunate to hear Sax speak at a parent education class at my children’s elementary school, and the premise of Why Gender Matters resonated for me even more after that. Why Gender Matters is a scholarly work in which (in layman’s words) Sax describes the known physiological differences in male and female brains. He then sets forth the proposition that successfully engaging those different types of brains in the educational process requires that we approach some aspects of how we educate girls and boys differently. Doing so may result in increasing the number of females who graduate college with degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math. In the book, Sax references a study in which “women educated in women-only colleges are three times more likely subsequently to earn a PhD in subjects like computer science and physics, compared to women who attend co-ed universities.” For example, the women-only college Mount Holyoke reportedly has graduated more women who have gone on to earn PhD degrees in physics than has Harvard, the renowned co-ed university. As a tax adviser and mother, I’m not qualified to opine on the validity of Sax’s observations and views, but I am intrigued enough by what I’ve read to suggest that the subject merits greater consideration by global educators. Our educational systems around the world need to successfully entice, excite, and educate both women and men—with the gender-tailored approaches that may in fact be necessary—to excel in all facets of the arts and sciences.


September/October 2012

Leadership is not gender specific There is a place where people drive success. Where every professional has the opportunity to demonstrate their strengths and achieve their goals. It’s KPMG LLP. Where leadership is not gender specific. KPMG is proud that Lisa A. Madden is one of Profiles in Diversity Journal’s 2013 Women Worth Watching.

© 2012 KPMG LLP, a Delaware limited liability partnership and the U.S. member firm of the KPMG network of independent member firms affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”), a Swiss entity. All rights reserved. The KPMG name, logo and “cutting through complexity” are registered trademarks or trademarks of KPMG International. 104006NDPPS

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Lauralee E.

Jones Lang LaSalle



Chicago, Illinois WEBSITE:


HE BUSINESS WORLD IS DRIVEN BY THE LATEST TECHNOLOGY ADVANCEMENTS AND INNOVATIONS. Integrating tech trends into academic programs is forward-thinking, but challenging, as the trends revolutionize so quickly (seemingly daily). Effective educational systems that best prepare students for the workforce would think less about traditional academic curricula and more about what students take away from the classroom. Both business leaders and schools play a part in this “technology school of thought,” which is driven by innovation, collaboration, business technology, and new benchmarks of success. As today’s business and technology landscape changes, it requires students to change with it. This element of change is exciting, but means that the responsibility of teachers is to demonstrate how to learn rather than what to learn. By understanding the heightened importance of learning how to learn, teachers can be more creative in the classroom, ultimately fostering innovation—the ultimate driver in today’s business world. Innovation also relies on the ability to work collaboratively. This “peer-driven” approach to teaching may not seem particularly modern at the surface, but I cannot stress enough how important working in teams is to navigating a company in our tech-driven world. By bringing together diverse perspectives, students learn how to be resourceful and solutions-driven. These kinds of problem-solving skills are so much more important to a business than quantitative test scores. Knowing how to master business technology, such as social media and development tools, proves invaluable in today’s professional world. That said, schools and companies should create partnerships by having business leaders engage in hands-on roles to shape their future workforces. Students who have solid foundations of business-focused technology will have a competitive edge over others entering the working world. Perhaps the most critical element to instill in the classroom is changing the benchmarks of success for teachers and students. The current focus on test scores and grades doesn’t motivate or reward the innovation and resourcefulness that drive long-term success. This is the hardest change to make but it will also make the most impact on preparing the future workforce to create and use tomorrow’s technology. As technology continues to change, so will the value of innovation and collaboration, combined with a solid foundation in technology enabled by broader benchmarks that motivate students and teachers. As leaders in corporate, techreliant industries, we have an obligation to partner with schools to develop programs that encourage this new “school of thought” and equip students with the resources and programs to succeed.



September/October 2012

BUSINESS: Real estate, investment management, professional services REVENUES: $3.6 billion EMPLOYEES: 45,000 TITLE: Chief Operating & Financial Officer EDUCATION:

BA, Oregon State University; MBA, University of Connecticut FIRST JOB: Customer

Service & Sales, Pacific NW Bell Telephone MY PHILOSOPHY: Every day

is an opportunity to learn something you didn’t know yesterday. FAMILY: Married 39 years

with two children

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? History classes to demonstrate past leadership shaping society, and organizational design courses to show leadership’s place in larger structures

What does it take to succeed in your position? You need to demonstrate genuine interest in employees’ work and appreciate different perspectives.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Focus on the value of what you're learning rather than grades.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Alliant Energy


“Every industry needs leaders,

why shouldn’t YOU be one of them?”


EOPLE THAT WORK WITH ME OFTEN HEAR ME SAY, “LEARN, LOVE AND LEAD.” What I mean is that you need to be a lifelong learner, you should love what you do, and be a leader in everything you do. This is the philosophy I preach, but also the criteria I live my life by. Be a lifelong learner. Learning is not simply about obtaining a degree. A college degree may get you to a point, but it’s what you do with that degree and how you supplement it that will set you apart. I feel it’s also critical that current college students learn to learn. Sometimes this in itself can be an art form. Going from a home full of structure into a college setting that often begins a life of independence can lead to some poor choices. I wish colleges would teach study skills in a way that could be transferred from college to the workforce. Then graduates could hit the ground running even faster. Love what you do. Love what you do and show that passion. It is natural for a person to excel at the activities they love; it takes perseverance to develop a passion for something new. Throughout my career, I have been asked to take positions for which I had no formal background. I never said no to a new opportunity. I move into a position and start by asking questions and immersing myself in the topics. When you interact with people who love what they do, that passion begins to rub off. I have learned so much by taking opportunities out of my comfort zone. I’ve had opportunities few people in the utility industry have had the chance to experience. Showcase your leadership. Good leaders help develop the next leaders. I have a passion for mentoring others. I have learned almost everyone wants to succeed and wants honest, candid feedback. If you don’t give that, you’re cheating people. Every industry needs leaders, why shouldn’t you be one of them? If you are a lifelong learner then choose to lead. Leading may not mean having a manager title. It may mean heading up a new initiative or project. At our company, we have many opportunities for employees to lead, but you have to want to find the opportunity, and take the risk and extra responsibility. It is truly rewarding. September/October 2012

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? As an adult, I decided I wanted to learn to play the piano. My piano teacher taught me a valuable lesson that stays with me today: “You can accomplish anything with passion and practice.”

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Balance does not exist—but priorities do. I am very lucky to have a great husband who supports my career and does all he can so that we can achieve the goals we set as a family. Having collective goals and being clear about what we want to achieve both personally and professionally makes all the difference.


Madison, Wisconsin WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Electric and gas utilities REVENUES:

$3.6 billion EMPLOYEES:

4,000 TITLE:

Director, New Generation Planning and Construction EDUCATION:

BA, Coe College; MBA, Ashford University FIRST JOB: Mowing lawns FAMILY:

Husband, Robert; two children, Daniel and Jessica



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Harris Corporation



Melbourne, Florida WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Communications and information technology


S A CORPORATE ATTORNEY WHO WORKS IN THE TECHNOLOGY SECTOR, MY VIEW THAT BUSINESS AND TECHNOLOGY SHOULD BOTH FEATURE PROMINENTLY IN OUR EDUCATION SYSTEM WILL COME AS NO SURPRISE. But it’s my role as mother—and the typical parental desire for my children to achieve more than I have—that drives my belief that technology should become the very foundation of the K-12 education model. Today, literacy in digital media has become a key required skill in every discipline and profession; however, the typical public school curriculum has not yet evolved to adequately prepare our children for the realities of this new world workforce. While technology is increasingly part of the classroom environment, it is generally integrated in the form of supplemental tools, rather than as fundamental to the entire education process. I believe that preparing students to succeed in today’s professional world requires a total immersion process that moves digital media literacy from being simply another academic subject to being a second language. As we raise a generation that lives and breathes technology, we’re fooling ourselves if we believe our children will enthusiastically respond to traditional teaching methods. Students who see little connection between the academic world and the real world in which they live will undoubtedly be less engaged. My own children are fortunate to attend a great school in a top-notch public school system, and yet I see them coming home with reams of paper-based homework. I wonder how much more interesting and engaging the school day would be if the technology to which they’re so drawn was seamlessly intertwined with the process of learning. If my son could work through math problems on a PC rather than on paper, might he do more of them? Would homework be less of a chore and more something he enjoys? More importantly, will this academic environment adequately prepare my children to succeed in a world that increasingly relies on technology to communicate information? While I don’t fear that the lack of a fully technology-based K-12 curriculum will prevent my children from making a success of their lives, I do wonder how much more they could accomplish and how much faster they could accomplish it given an appropriate technology foundation. If a technology-based education helped instill a love of learning early in life, where might that take them later? How much further might they go? From a mother’s perspective, nowhere is too far.



September/October 2012

REVENUES: $6 billion EMPLOYEES: 17,000 TITLE:

Vice President, Associate General Counsel EDUCATION: BBA, University

of Texas at Austin; JD, University of Denver Sturm College of Law FIRST JOB:

Contracts associate at Columbine JDS Systems, Inc. MY PHILOSOPHY:

Ask for forgiveness, not permission. FAMILY:

My husband Randy, son Gray, and daughter Quinn

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My sixth grade teacher, Mr. Shoemaker, managed to make every student feel special and worthy in their own way. I gained a level of selfconfidence that year that I didn’t have before.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I’m not sure I do. I try to be present—both mentally and physically—when I’m home with my family but admittedly get distracted by email and other work responsibilities. My husband once told me “the sky’s not going to fall if you don’t work right now” and he was right. I try to remember that when things start getting out of control.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner



Sprint Nextel Corporation

Overland Park, Kansas

McCann “


All children should have an opportunity to learn from teachers, who truly care about igniting a PASSION for learning in their students.”


Telecommunications REVENUES: $33.7 billion EMPLOYEES: 40,000

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? I encourage college students to get a broad liberal arts education. I recommend courses in economics, political science, psychology, history, statistics, engineering, computer science, and foreign languages.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? An elementary school teacher, Mrs. Elmore, saw something in me and encouraged me to read as much as possible. She gave me books to read at home and discussed them with me after class. She instilled in me a lifelong love of reading.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? Balancing career and home responsibilities takes discipline and an understanding family.

T’S VIRTUALLY IMPOSSIBLE TO PUT A PRICE TAG ON QUALITY EDUCATION. Ask anyone who has ever been truly inspired by a great educator and that person will likely tell you the experience is one that changed his or her life forever. But a child should not have to rely on luck to have such an experience with a teacher. All children should have an opportunity to learn from teachers, who truly care about igniting a passion for learning in their students. Sadly, it seems that too many of our children do not have access to true, professional educators like we did 50 years ago. I entered elementary school in the late 1950s. At that time, the African American community viewed education as the best way out of poverty and a chance to achieve the American dream. Since professional career opportunities for educated African Americans were very limited, many of the best and brightest became teachers. Teachers were scholars, and they were revered. There were no reports of teachers being confronted by hostile parents or disrespectful students. We felt honored to have a teacher take an interest in us. Teachers also seemed to earn salaries that enabled them to live a little more comfortably than oth-

TITLE: Senior Vice President, Government Affairs EDUCATION: BA, University of

California, Los Angeles; MPP, JD, University of California, Berkeley FIRST JOB: Gift wrapper in a

local jewelry store MY PHILOSOPHY:

Best summed up by a quote from Winston S. Churchill: “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” FAMILY:

Married with two children

ers who were struggling in the community. Today, in the United States, teaching seems to have lost its revered place among the professions. Modest teacher salaries do not attract the most qualified college graduates, many of whom may be graduating with considerable debt. To improve the retention rates of teachers and encourage the brightest college students to become teachers, we must take steps to restore teaching to an honored profession in American society. Teacher salaries must be set at a level that will attract the best candidates, with bonuses based on performance. Teachers must be given clear student achievement goals and adequate tools to reach those goals. As professionals who deserve our respect, teachers must be trusted to know best how to reach their students and be given the flexibility to design course curricula to meet the needs of their students. The days of “teaching to the test” or using “one-size-fits-all” curricula need to end. If we want to attract and retain the best teachers, we must emphasize the importance of education and elevate the teaching profession. We must make the necessary financial investments and encourage creativity and innovation in our schools. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner




New York City WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Insurance REVENUES: $23.8 billion EMPLOYEES: 9,000 TITLE:

Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications EDUCATION:

AB, Harvard University FIRST JOB:

Editing research reports written by stock and bond analysts at Salomon Brothers MY PHILOSOPHY:

Do everything possible to find work you love and people you enjoy working with. FAMILY:

Married for 27 years to Brian O’Leary; three children: Frank, Anne, and Charlie

New York Life

How has your education affected your career? When I think about what I learned in the classroom, I can only identify a handful of concepts that have shaped my career. But overall, my education exposed me to a wealth of ideas—from great novels to economic principles to architecture to history. And even more important, it put me in very close contact with a lot of fascinating people. These experiences made my world much bigger, and that benefits me every day.


HE STORIES AND STATISTICS ABOUT THE OPPRESSION OF GIRLS AND WOMEN ACROSS THE GLOBE ARE STAGGERING—AND WORSE, NUMBING. The scope of the problem seems too big to tackle, especially for an individual. But over the past several years, I’ve read a few books that give me both hope and inspiration. Two, in particular, offer exceedingly pragmatic solutions, with education for women at their heart. Half the Sky, by Nick Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, is no longer just a book—it’s a movement aimed at ending the oppression of women and girls worldwide. It’s about raising awareness of the issues and identifying concrete steps to fight these problems. For example, when it comes to educating girls, “simply building new schools is not enough,” according to “The trick is to find ways to keep teachers and students regularly attending school. One of the most cost-effective ways to increase school attendance is to deworm students. For as little as 50 cents per student, deworming has been shown to increase student alertness and has reduced school absenteeism by 25 percent in some regions. Other simple solutions include offering small scholarships to girls who do well in school, as well as helping girls manage their menstruation by providing sanitary pads and ensuring they have access to toilets at school.” These are manageable challenges. Perhaps the book that has most inspired me in my life is Mountains Beyond Mountains, by Tracy Kidder. It’s the story of Paul Farmer, who in 1983 as a firstyear medical student at Harvard, established a community-based health project in Haiti known as Partners In Health. Today, PIH works with other organizations to operate projects serving 2.4 million people in 12 countries, all utilizing the same model: breaking the cycle of poverty and disease by hiring and training community health workers—mostly women—who provide health education, refer the sick to clinics, and deliver medicines and social support to patients in their homes. In Lesotho, for example, one out of every 62 women dies from hemorrhage, obstructed labor or other complications of pregnancy and childbirth. Since 2010, PIH has trained and employed more than 600 women, many of them traditional birth attendants who had formerly helped women deliver their babies at home, to locate all expectant mothers in their villages, accompany them to regular pre- and post-natal visits, and bring them to the clinic to deliver their babies with the help of a doctor or nurse/midwife. Check out to learn more.

“The trick is to find ways to keep teachers

and students regularly ATTENDING school.” 158


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Christine Liu ›

What does it take to succeed in your position? Love of your craft, passion to help others, and a keen sense of humility and humor

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? I have experienced disparities as a woman and as one that is firstgeneration Brazilian/Chinese in many different venues. In each case, I dealt with it head-on, by educating the individual on the impact of their words or actions.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Know that higher education gives you the intellectual tools to form your person—who you want to be, who you will become and the differences you will make in your life.


Milwaukee, Wisconsin WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Business law firm EMPLOYEES:

410 TITLE:

Shareholder, Labor & Employment Practice Group EDUCATION:

BA, JD, Marquette University FIRST JOB:

Selling family farm eggs FAMILY:

My three sons and husband

Godfrey & Kahn, S.C.


“We need to VALUE the education our teachers provide and that means making the investment in our teachers. ”


EE THE NEED, BE THE DIFFERENCE. IT’S A PHRASE FROM A DISCUSSION I HAD AS A CHILD WITH A TEACHER WHO I CONSIDER AN UNFORGETTABLE MENTOR. Teachers are the lifeline to giving our children and our children’s children knowledge, and knowledge is power—the power to know your limits and strengths, debate your beliefs, see the need, and be the difference. This power in education is ours for the taking, yet we often times forget that our teachers are vital to our ability to educate our future. I suppose that one could say I am well-suited to give my very humble opinion on what teachers in our public school systems need today. My grandfather, mother, and sister were teachers, and now I find myself a teacher of sorts, mentoring my three young sons. Yet I hesitate because I have not had to teach while earning little more than minimum wage, or teach behind security doors and metal detectors, or teach children whose bellies are hungry and emotions raw from absent parents who are merely trying to survive. But what I can share, with confidence and conviction, is what I have seen is missing and what can be the difference. We need to value the education our teachers provide and that means making the investment in our teachers. Invest in their intellect, incentivize further advancement in the educational field, reward creativity, and provide the monetary means to do so. We need to promote local partnerships between school system administrators, community organizations, and educators to provide resources to teachers that allow them to reach out for assistance to nurture and care for our children beyond the four corners of the classroom. We need to create a system where teachers have the ability to invest themselves in the success of the schools in which they teach, whether it be by incentive performance, curriculum impact, or administration assistance. Finally, we need to give our time, intellect, and resources to reach out to those dreaming of forming the minds of our children and communicate to them this: contributions of one’s own creativity will never go unnoticed in life because each of us has the ability to be the difference—be passionate and be committed for the sake of our children and our children’s children. Your imprint in life will forever be known. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


ConAgra Foods

Menke-Schaenzer “I've learned that FOOD not only can feed people, but teach them.”


HE FACT THAT “EVERYONE NEEDS TO EAT” LED ME TO STUDY FOOD SCIENCE IN COLLEGE, AS I BELIEVED IT WOULD OFFER FUTURE JOB SECURITY. Since then, I’ve learned that food not only can feed people, but teach them. Food not only offers insight to a wealth of science and technology, but is an ideal vehicle for learning key skills such as problem solving and teamwork. These skills—along with effectively communicating scientific concepts—are necessary to develop tomorrow’s leaders. Since childhood, problem solving and teamwork have been an important part of my life. Between my mother’s teaching career and my father leading a church, my four siblings and I had HEADQUARTERS: to pitch in and put our rivalries Omaha, Nebraska aside in order to help keep WEBSITE: the family fed. From this, I learned the importance of staying focused on BUSINESS: solutions and to not get Consumer foods hung up on day-to-day REVENUES: problems. $12 billion Such skills can and

should be incorporated organically into the way we teach others. Whether using team-based activities to solve math problems or using small groups to analyze and present literary discussions, most subjects can be used to teach teamwork and problem solving. Food offers a way to teach these skills, while also communicating science in an understandable way. People have lost a personal connection with their food and the science behind it. When people don’t understand where their food comes from, they lose an intimate connection with something they put into their bodies. Food can teach complex science and technology concepts to any age. Imagine a group of elementary school students learning chemistry by understanding the key ingredients behind what makes a favorite cake rise. We use such practical methods to teach employees how their actions keep food safe and of the highest quality. Teamwork, problem solving, and the ability to communicate complex ideas in a simple way all are key to tackling tomorrow’s challenges. Food preparation, by touching everyone’s lives, offers a window to learning creative problem solving and effective teamwork. In my experience, technical know-how is a requirement. Good leaders effectively communicate this knowledge to solve problems and work together. We must take every opportunity to help today’s students learn and practice these skills, so they can lead us into the future.


24,000 TITLE: Chief Global Quality Officer EDUCATION:

BS, University of Wisconsin FIRST JOB: Third shift

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Ability to connect with and deeply listen to others, from hourly positions to CEO of organization

food technologist, Beaver Dam, Wisconsin MY PHILOSOPHY:

Continuous learning makes life more fun and a bigger adventure.

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? Family is a team. Athletic backgrounds drive teamwork skills.


Married with a son and daughter



September/October 2012

What advice would you give younger women about their education? There is nothing better one can do than to invest in themselves. Continually learn each day and stay engaged in multiple activities.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Kalpana M.

Eli Lilly and Company



GREW UP IN MUMBAI, INDIA, AND CAME TO THIS COUNTRY IN MY LATE TWENTIES. The Indian culture puts a premium value on academic achievement and college degree attainment, particularly in the areas of math and science. However, my parents instilled in me that learning itself was more important than grades. This is what I call transformative education. From a very young age, my parents taught me that in order to realize the true value of an education, it also is important to learn fine arts and language arts. This important lesson has remained with me and I have, in turn, tried to pass it on to my children. As I look back and ponder the effect of education on my life, I can think of a few key examples of how education has shaped my life choices and eventually my career. My undergraduate education in pharmacy school in India sparked my keen interest in life sciences research. It was the driver that led to my graduate studies in pharmacology and eventually to my chosen profession. More importantly, I am convinced that my transition to the U.S. was facilitated by the transformative education I received—from my fluency in English to my knowledge about American popular culture and my respect for American values of selfreliance and hard work. The education I received in this country also was transformational. A major distinction from the Indian university system—and the one that pleasantly surprised me—was the freedom to take any class I wanted, even if it was not a part of my core curriculum or focus. I remember taking a software programming class that took me to the fascinating world of bytes and bits rather than brain cells and biochemistry. I loved the informal learning environment where some of the professors wanted to be addressed by their first names (something unheard of in the India that I grew up in). I also was fascinated when I was exposed to my first take-home exam geared toward learning rather than grades. I remember attending seminars by Nobel laureates and prominent scientists whose research was the foundation of my own dissertation. I often reminisce about school and the research environment and wish I could go back to the freedom of learning full-time. I would be remiss if I did not point out that education is a continuum. It happens inside and outside the classroom and throughout life, if one wants to be a lifelong learner. Countless individuals—peers, staff, supervisors, mentors and mentees—have educated me. I am forever grateful for their contribution to my knowledge. Like Michelangelo said, “I am still learning.”


Indianapolis, Indiana WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Pharmaceuticals REVENUES:

$24 billion EMPLOYEES:

38,000 TITLE:

Chief Scientific Officer, Translational Science EDUCATION:

PhD, University of Utah FIRST JOB:

Product R&D, Boots Company Ltd., Mumbai, India MY PHILOSOPHY:

Follow your passion, take risks, and see life as an adventure. FAMILY:

Husband and two sons

How has your education affected your career? In addition to providing me a strong technical foundation, my education has taught me to have an inquiring mind, conduct thoughtful experiments, be systematic in my approach and have confidence in myself. These attributes have been critical for my career in the pharmaceutical research.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I could not do this without the understanding and unwavering support of my husband. From the beginning, we were totally aligned on our life priorities. We celebrate each other’s successes and learn from setbacks together. Above all, we have approached our careers as means to follow our interests and passions and not an end in itself. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Michele M.


Telecommunications distribution and supply chain REVENUES: $6.8 billion EMPLOYEES: 4,100 TITLE:

Senior Director of Global Marketing & Communications EDUCATION: BA, University

of Wisconsin-Stevens Point; MBA, Everest University MY PHILOSOPHY: Realizing

your greatest potential as a leader is not a one-time event, but rather a series of lifetime experiences and events, and a demonstrated level of commitment to learning throughout your life. FAMILY: My parents

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? A master’s degree, particularly an MBA, is critical to aspiring young women. A strong, well-balanced curriculum in business and or marketing can take you very far. In today’s competitive job market, a master’s degree is a requirement that will differentiate you from other candidates.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My father was a university educator for 49 years, and he has been my strongest influencer. Continuing from high school to college and on to graduate school was something that was expected in our household, as education is viewed as a lifelong event.


Brightstar Corporation

Merrell “As a society we must continuously adapt to the CHANGES going on around us.”


BEGAN MY CAREER IN THE WIRELESS TELECOMMUNICATIONS INDUSTRY IN 1993, WHEN THE INDUSTRY WAS GROWING AT A DIZZYING RATE. The industry has been in swift evolution ever since, and as a society we must continuously adapt to the changes going on around us. The explosion of technology and its integration into our lives also creates significant new educational challenges that successful workers and companies need to meet head-on. To succeed in the workplace and in society in general, students need broader abilities that encompass the entire range of STEM skills, which are important in any career. So the question becomes, in this rapidly evolving society, how do we get more young people (particularly girls in middle school and high school) to see the opportunities and possibilities that are created from education in the STEM disciplines? There may not be one all-encompassing answer to STEM gender equality. We need to get young people excited very early on about technology and innovation and the possibilities STEM opens to them. The best way to do this is not just through traditional classroom settings, but perhaps more in laboratory settings. Technology usage should become so second nature that even when a young person doesn’t want to major in STEM subjects, they should have a solid ground-level understanding of how to use it and integrate it into their lives on a daily basis so that they can be competitive. It is also important as corporate leaders that we encourage, mentor and recruit young women from an early age. Many studies show that interest in STEM disciplines drop off significantly between high school and college, and that women are woefully underrepresented at the college level in terms of STEM classroom enrollment numbers. Part of the reason for this may be a significant lack of female role models for young girls, and this may cause them to lose interest early on. As a female leader in the constantly innovating wireless industry, I believe that drastic change has to take place in order to continue the critical cycle of innovation to keep our country competitive. I believe there is a direct correlation between STEM disciplines, innovation, creativity, and entrepreneurialism. Our job as leaders is to channel the abilities of all children, regardless of age, race or gender, in these disciplines, in order ultimately succeed as a country in the global economy.


September/October 2012

V A N G U A R D C A R E E R S . Stay. Inspired.

Stay exceptional. Congratulations, Pauline Scalvino and all the recipients, for being named one of this year’s Women Worth Watching, by Diversity Journal. You are an inspiration to the entire Vanguard crew. Connect with VanguardŽ

Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Erin Moseley, BAE Systems, Inc. • Margaret A. Mitchell, YWCA Greater Cleveland • Laura Monica, Pepco Holdings, Inc. • Latondra Newton, Toyota Motor North America, Inc. Tania Moussallem, BLC Bank • Gwen Muse-Evans, Fannie Mae • Linda K. Myers, Kirkland & Ellis LLP • Tracie Morris, ComEd, Exelon Corporation Carol Murphy, Aon • Ana M. Middleton, Army and Air Force Exchange Service • Dana O'Brien, CEVA Logistics • Irene Natividad, GlobeWomen




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Ana M.

Army and Air Force Exchange Service



N MAY OF THIS YEAR, I PROUDLY SAT IN AN AUDITORIUM IN SAN JOSE STATE UNIVERSITY, LISTENING TO THE COMMENCEMENT SPEECH AT MY NIECE’S GRADUATION CEREMONY. Notified a month earlier of her acceptance into the San Jose State Graduate Program, we all understood that this ceremony was just the beginning of her journey. Looking at the proud families in the audience, I thought about their sacrifices to give their children this competitive edge in life. In these tough economic times, so many families are weighing the cost/benefit ratio of higher education. With the rising cost of tuition and a less than robust job market, it isn’t surprising that the value of higher education is coming into question. The real question becomes, can a high school graduate realize similar professional success as a college graduate? I believe the answer is yes, success is attainable withHEADQUARTERS: out a degree, but the probabilDallas, Texas ity in corporate America is WEBSITE: unlikely. There are several BUSINESS: Retail celebrated success stories of entrepreneurs REVENUES: who did not complete, $10 billion or even begin college,

who have literally changed the world: Steve Jobs, founder of Apple Inc.; Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft; Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Records and Virgin Atlantic Airways; and Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook, just to name a few. But I think we need to agree that these are extraordinary individuals with uncommon talents. The majority of us find ourselves in corporate work environments where a college degree is the price of entry to advancement opportunities. I found myself at this crossroad in my company. I had risen through the ranks through dedication, hard work, and a reputation for delivering strong financial results. What I didn’t have was a college degree. I took the non-traditional route to higher education and got my degree while working full-time. Not the easiest course, but upon completion, I was on equal educational footing with my peers. My dedication, global experience, and results-driven performance set me apart from the pack. Unless you are going to go the entrepreneur route, a college degree still gives you a competitive edge and is worth the financial outlay. The only caveat I offer is don’t fall prey to the belief that a degree guarantees success. Become a lifelong student—seek out and celebrate diverse opinions, practice situational awareness, and continually learn from your customers and competition. In the end there is no substitute for hard work.


Senior Vice President, Sales Directorate › How has your education affected your career? Having a degree afforded me the opportunity to be competitive with my peers and increased the likelihood that I would be included in promotional vacancy pools.


BS, University of Maryland FIRST JOB:

Fast food worker

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Strategic thinking to anticipate market trends, agility to react to a fast-paced competitive environment, and strong collaborative/ team-building skills to guide the organization through change


Question conventional wisdom to drive sustainable solutions—there are no sacred cows. FAMILY:

Married with two stepsons, five grandchildren



September/October 2012

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? As a Hispanic woman I can honestly say I’ve never felt discriminated against or marginalized in any respect in my company.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Margaret A.

YWCA Greater Cleveland

Mitchell “We must keep CLIMBING and not look back until female leaders are no longer a rare sight.”


RECENTLY WITNESSED BETH MOONEY, CHAIRMAN AND CEO OF KEYCORP, STEP INTO A BALLROOM FILLED WITH THE WHO’S WHO OF CORPORATE AMERICA. As she glided into the room an audible but hushed cheer spread throughout the crowded ballroom like a wildfire. While several male captains of industry had also entered the room that night, the unrehearsed reaction was the response to a rare sighting of a female chairman and CEO of a publically-traded company. Beth Mooney is in the exclusive club of “firsts”; in 2012, women CEOs of the top 500 companies reached an all-time high of 20. But rarity does not mean progress is eluding us. Progress moves painfully slow and even backwards at times, but moments such as the one in the ballroom remind us of the importance of women’s advancement. While we celebrate milestones, we must also keep moving forward. From pay to promotions, the playing field is not level. It’s Mount Everest with plenty of obstacles—but we’re power-walking our way to equity in our kitten heels, and we’re slowly gaining on the lead position. Women are now enrolled in college in greater numbers than men and are earning more bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees than men. Women are also making up ground in what traditionally have been considered male-dominated disciplines such as biology, business, and math. From McKinsey to Catalyst, the research concludes that diverse leadership teams deliver positive economic impact for companies when women and minorities have a place in the leadership circle, a key to the C-suite, and a seat at the board table. Sometimes the metrics are startling, such as Catalyst’s 2007 report demonstrating that companies with the most female board members out-perform companies with the fewest by a 53 percent higher return on equity and with a 66 percent increase in return on capital. Such results are possible through the efforts of women supporting women across the business spectrum. We must keep climbing and not look back until female leaders are no longer a rare sight. September/October 2012

How has your education affected your career? I sometimes wish I had a graduate degree, but results have taken me where an MBA can go.

What does it take to succeed in your position? I have a great team willing to tell me the truth. I also believe it takes vision and clarity on how to execute.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I have a fantastic husband of 27 years, but don’t kid yourself— there is a cost, and sometimes you learn from costly mistakes that you have to keep your priority and focus.


Cleveland, Ohio WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Nonprofit REVENUES: $2.7 million EMPLOYEES: 36 TITLE:

President & CEO EDUCATION:

BA, Hampton University FIRST JOB:

The same summer, I picked grapes and worked at the movie theater. MY PHILOSOPHY:

If it matters, measure it. Your exit says everything about you. FAMILY:

My husband, Les Green. We have raised three beautiful young adults: Evan, Anise, and Cameron.



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Pepco Holdings, Inc.

Monica “Women have earned a rank in almost every marketplace, and they play a VITAL ROLE in virtually every aspect of public life.” › What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Get a well-rounded education. Behavioral and organizational development courses helped me understand group dynamics, motivations, and critical leadership attributes. › What does it take to succeed in your position? Strategy, collaboration, accountability, flexibility, trust, intuition, observation, practicality, ethics, resilience, and a healthy sense of humor › How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Having a husband who’s a true partner, who always supports me—at home and for my career


T IS IMPORTANT FOR WOMEN BEGINNING THEIR CAREERS TO RECOGNIZE THAT THERE ARE NO SHORTCUTS, NO EXCUSES, AND NO INSTRUCTIONAL HANDBOOKS FOR THEIR SUCCESS. They must shape their own futures and not be distracted by potential stereotypes and perceived cultural norms, nor use these as excuses for a lack of parity in the workplace. A perception that a path may be blocked because an industry is male-dominated can be a roadblock on a woman’s path to a leadership position. I recall a conversation I had with my father soon after I finished graduate school. I was concerned that I might not be able to land a finance job because, at that time, men largely dominated the industry. My father told me in no uncertain terms that I was making excuses and that if I wanted to work in finance, I should make it happen. I was the only thing standing in my way, he said. He was right. Since then, I have believed that I could succeed in whatever area I chose to pursue, and that I alone controlled my destiny. Education is one of the best ways for women to prepare to compete. Higher education is essential to teach women advanced critical, analytical, and communication skills, which I consider to be fundamental for any executive. Women who’ve earned undergraduate degrees and have worked a while should consider post-graduate schooling to enhance their skills and broaden their perspectives. Women also should never lose sight that learning is a lifelong experience. Women have earned a rank in almost every marketplace, and they play a vital role in virtually every aspect of public life. Women have opportunities to excel, lead, and achieve parity with men, but it is imperative for women to have the knowledge, skills, and confidence to pursue these opportunities. Women must stay focused, be accountable, and most importantly, be flexible as they pursue leadership positions. With time, I think we will see more women excel in leadership positions, land board appointments, and achieve compensation parity, all while serving as role models for their younger counterparts. Eventually, maybe more women will see their role as I see mine. Even as I ultimately sat in meetings and at boardroom tables that were often dominated by men, it simply never occurred to me that I shouldn’t be there, too.



September/October 2012


Washington, D.C. WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Electric utility REVENUES: $5.9 billion EMPLOYEES: 5,100 TITLE: Vice President, Corporate Communications EDUCATION: BA, MPA,

University of New Hampshire FIRST JOB: Strategic planning

consultant to NH Department of Health and Welfare MY PHILOSOPHY: Maintain your

integrity and ethics—that’s all that matters in the end. FAMILY: I’m the youngest

of four, a New Hampshire native. My father, a WWII vet, was in sales, and my mother started work once I began school. I have adult twin daughters.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner HEADQUARTERS:

Chicago, Illinois


WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Energy REVENUES: $32.7 billion

ComEd, Exelon Corporation

Morris “

My advice to students is to EMBRACE the role of a lifelong learner.”

EMPLOYEES: 27,000 TITLE: Vice President, Human Resources EDUCATION:

BS, North Central College; MS, Benedictine University FIRST JOB: Camp

counselor for St. Laurence Elementary School MY PHILOSOPHY: Leaders with vision, humility, and servitude have greater potential for success because they recognize and integrate the strengths of others. FAMILY: Three amazing

children and wonderful family and friends


S AN HR PROFESSIONAL, I HAVE MANY OPPORTUNITIES TO INTERACT WITH STUDENT INTERNS AND NEW HIRES. While most have the educational credentials they need to succeed, we really have an exciting opportunity and responsibility to help them strengthen the practical life skills they will need to navigate effectively in today’s corporate environments. For example, younger workers are very comfortable with technology and adapting to a society that increasingly relies on social media, but they don’t always make the connection that as a result of the technological advances they enjoy in their personal lives, the 9-5 workday is a thing of the past. Many employers expect their people to be reachable, and responsive, after hours and on weekends. High school students think differently, some say are wired differently, than those of us who are well into our professional careers. They are willing to step up and lead projects and are looking to advance quickly. These are excellent characteristics for a fast-changing and fast-paced workplace, and younger employees will be able to more effectively put those attributes to use when they are coupled with a more deliber-

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? I am a certified yoga and meditation instructor. Every day I take the opportunity to meditate and do yoga. This has been a big stress relief for me. I also have date night with my son and I’m involved with my wonderful daughters’ interests. That excites me. I have a very challenging job. It is not easy to balance career and home. I make every effort to do both as well as I can.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? My advice for younger women is to follow your passion. It is important to love what you do. When you have passion for your career, it makes the challenges more tolerable. I would challenge them to go beyond conventional thinking and never be afraid of asking the right questions.

ate and methodical approach; faster isn’t always better. Like anyone adjusting to a new position or new industry, it takes a while for them to hit their stride, fully appreciate the importance of institutional knowledge and realize that truly successful organizations value both innovation and experience. My advice to schools is simple: encourage internships. There is nothing like experiencing a professional environment to help future colleagues see first-hand how the theories and case studies they learn in school are applicable, and adaptable, in real life scenarios. I would also recommend incorporating technology more fully into the more traditional curriculum. Computer science, mechanical engineering, and other subjects will help open our students’ eyes to the variety of industries and fields that are starved for talent. My advice to students is to embrace the role of a lifelong learner. Your education doesn’t end when you receive your diploma—that moment in time can be the spark that propels each student toward a professional career that will undoubtedly require more advanced knowledge and skills to complement maturity and experience. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner HEADQUARTERS:

Arlington, Virginia WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Defense,


BAE Systems, Inc.


aerospace, and security

“PEOPLE motivate people, and we need to

REVENUES: $14.4 billion

stop shirking our individual responsibilities and do something about it.”


Senior Vice President, Government Relations EDUCATION:

BS, BS, Azusa Pacific University; MS, Georgetown University FIRST JOB: Administrative

assistant at Los Alamos National Laboratory MY PHILOSOPHY:

Always be supportive, but get out of the way and let leaders lead. FAMILY: Married with four



Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Of course. But it made me put my head down and work harder. I called people on it and recognized it was not always intentional and it motivated me to prove them wrong without saying a word.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? A college professor who refused to give me an A because he said I was the smartest in the class but wasn’t giving it my all. He was comparing me against my potential and not those around me. I took more classes from him and got A’s!

HERE HAS BEEN MUCH CONCERN OVER THE LACK OF FEMALE INVOLVEMENT IN STEM, PARTICULARLY IN THE AEROSPACE AND DEFENSE INDUSTRY, WHERE INNOVATION AND DIVERSITY OF THOUGHT ARE SO CRITICAL. Numerous studies have explored the issue, resulting in various programs designed to help address the problem. Part of the issue is that we’re searching for a single, simplistic answer to a complex question. Research has shown there are a variety of factors that impact a woman’s interest in STEM, including age, environment, family goals, and identity-safety, just to name a few. Treating women as a monolithic group, as if we’re all the same, ignores that we are individuals with different interests, backgrounds, experiences, and goals. My parents encouraged me from a very young age to try everything. They believed that, over time, I would naturally gravitate toward those things I was most passionate about. From baseball to ballet, and piano to auto mechanics, I did it all. Some activities I hated, but some I loved and still do to this day. I learned to focus on what I was most passionate



about, and through that passion I was able to find the kind of rewards and success that motivate me internally. However, that approach may not have the same impact on another female who is motivated differently. There are numerous reasons why many women choose not to pursue an education or career in STEM, whether it’s because there are fewer female role models in these fields or because a disproportionate share of familial duties still fall on women. This is why a single, uniform program won’t change this situation over the long term. People motivate people, and we need to stop shirking our individual responsibilities and do something about it. We can all make a personal commitment to helping that young lady sitting in front of us in class, or nervously applying for the job we posted. We need to talk to them and discover how we can help them fulfill their potential. Those of us who have worked hard to get to our positions, regardless of field, should take a moment to reflect on how we got there and who helped us along the way. If we can support, encourage, and mentor just one female in the same way, we can build on what others have done for us and make a positive and lasting impact on someone’s future.

September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


BLC Bank


› How has your education affected your career? It has set the basis of the technical knowledge I needed and it provided a very useful network of competent people.

“I have personally opted for the latter and targeted one KEY obstacle women face: access to finance.”


HAVE ALWAYS WONDERED WHY SOCIETIES HAVE HISTORICALLY UNDEREXPLOITED THE POTENTIAL OF 51 PERCENT OF THEIR POPULATION AND ITS CONSEQUENT IMPACT ON THE ECONOMY. Numerous studies show that participation of women in the workplace can boost the GDP of a country and the profitability of companies. Diversity creates value and wealth. And yet so many obstacles are still profoundly anchored in mentalities, habits, and traditions hindering the presence of women in many vital areas of the public and private sectors. Some obstacles are measurable whereas others are hidden and unconscious. In a country such as Lebanon, women represent 56 percent of university graduates but only 25 percent of the workforce. If one looks more closely, one realizes that they are rarely present in upper management and their salaries are statistically lower as compared to their men counterparts. Similarly, they tend to be underrepresented in the entrepreneurial world and hold a very low percentage of market loans. How can this change when many men still consider a working wife a sign of his inability to provide for the family’s needs? Many women do not realize that this situation puts their family under an economic risk as the sole income of the family can disappear for more than one reason. What is even more surprising is that these mentalities are usually conveyed by mothers in childhood through transmission of unconscious biases and—even more dangerous—of conscious biases. Should we wait for men to understand the benefits of empowering women, or should women realize that no major shifts will occur unless they become their own agents of change? I have personally opted for the latter and targeted one key obstacle women face: access to finance. Building on a firm conviction that women represent a solid business opportunity, I have initiated and am managing a holistic program for female economic empowerment within the bank I work in: the WE Initiative. It is the first of its kind in the MENA region. With the support of visionary superiors and a solid consultant, IFC (International Finance Corporation), the program has been rolled out across all business lines. It caters for all women’s needs, be it financial, educational, or networking. This strategy has been very well-received by the market and is today one of our main differentiators. When women find someone who understands and supports them, they fly! September/October 2012

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? It takes will, energy, organization, time management, and support from family and service providers.

› What advice would you give younger women about their education? Education is a very valuable tool for success and it is an ongoing process that should not stop with graduation.


Beirut, Lebanon WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Banking REVENUES: $115 million EMPLOYEES: 972 TITLE: Assistant General Manager; Head of Strategic Development and Financial Management EDUCATION:

BBA, American University of Beirut, Lebanon; MBA, Ecole Supérieure des Sciences Economiques et Commerciales, France MY PHILOSOPHY:

Whatever you chose to do, do it with passion. You can get something positive out of every situation; you just need to find it. FAMILY: A supportive

husband and three lovely children



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner





DUCATION HAS ALWAYS BEEN VERY IMPORTANT IN MY FAMILY. My grandmother attended college to become a teacher in the 1920s. It was unusual for Americans, especially women, to attend college at that time. She then made sure my mother and her sister both graduated from colleges in the 1950s. My father came from a family who had never attended college, but he attended after serving in the Korean conflict via the GI bill and went on to receive a master’s degree. I was raised to believe that I could be whoever I wanted to be, but that education and working hard were the keys to success. My parents encouraged my tremendous curiosity and passion for learning which are still with me today. Immediately after obtaining my degree in economics, I was hired into the insurance industry as a casualty underwriter and then became a broker. In 1990, I joined Aon. I was promoted several times in my first ten years at the company. I was very busy with work and traveled extensively internationally, but wanted to get my MBA before starting a family. I decided upon the Executive MBA program at the University of Chicago; Aon sponsored my tuition. The class met on Fridays and Saturdays every other weekend for two years and included four weeks of intensive class work in Chicago and Barcelona. Following the completion of my degree, I led a large account practice in San Francisco and later returned to Chicago. I have been blessed in having a great education that was largely funded through scholarships and my company’s investment. Now, as the leader of Aon’s Women’s International Network, I share my passion for education with others and support professional learning opportunities for women and others in the insurance and risk management professions. I am a passionate supporter of STEM education because I believe development of my own interest in math especially has been critical to my business career. I have supported two colleagues on my team to attend MBA programs and helped another African American woman to finish her bachelor’s degree while working full-time. I also lead seminars regarding MBAs and balancing education with work and family demands. I have had the opportunities to fulfill my career and personal aspirations and to be successful in great part to the educational opportunities afforded to me. As leaders, we must work to broaden educational opportunities and access for all. We are in the risk management business but one of the biggest risks facing our firms is a shortage of qualified talent. By bringing in diverse candidates, including women, globally, we can meet that demand, and by investing in and promoting educational opportunity for all, we can create that pipeline of talent for the future.


London, England WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Insurance REVENUES: $11.3 billion EMPLOYEES: 62,000 TITLE: Managing Director EDUCATION:

BA, Bates College; MBA, University of Chicago FIRST JOB:

Casualty Underwriter, Travelers Insurance MY PHILOSOPHY:

Demonstrating exceptional performance in your job and being a strong team player is the first priority. Roadblocks and challenges make you stronger and can be overcome through exceptional performance and hard work. FAMILY: Husband John and

three daughters


How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I think it is essential for women to invest in as much outside support for home and childcare responsibilities as possible in order to be free to focus on a successful career. Although my husband is extremely supportive, having these great resources really helped me manage both.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Focus on developing skills that will serve you in your career aspirations over the longer term. Do your best in your education, as it is a very competitive environment. Depending on your situation, it may be easier to focus your energy on education before having children.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Fannie Mae




“The greatest gift of education is the ability to SHARE it.”

Mortgage finance EMPLOYEES:

7,000 TITLE:


SVP, Chief Risk Officer for Credit Portfolio Management

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My mother and first teacher inspired my love of reading and learning. She also taught me countless valuable life skills ranging from sewing, music, and sports appreciation to balancing a checkbook.

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Yes. I believe that when I face setbacks in one area of life, doors of opportunities are opened in other areas. I also surround myself with people who want me to succeed.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? I guard my time so I can spend it with the people in my life that matter most. When my work/home life is out of balance, I quickly adjust.

AM HONORED TO SHARE MY THOUGHTS ON THE TOPIC OF EDUCATION, A SUBJECT FOR WHICH I HAVE GREAT PASSION. Education can be defined as the “formal process by which society deliberately transmits its accumulated knowledge, skills, customs, and values from one generation to another.” Education has always been a high priority in my life because of the values instilled in me by my parents, as well as the sacrifices made by many before them which have afforded unlimited educational opportunities today. My father supported our family of ten through an Air Force career as an aircraft mechanic. My mother was a homemaker and sewing machine operator. While neither completed college, both established high educational standards for us. My parents also promoted an attitude of service. As a military family, this included service to our country, of course, but it also meant service to our family, church, and community. We were taught to leverage our education, resources, and skills to support ourselves and help others. I have enjoyed a long career in housing finance and have had the opportunity of helping many achieve homeownership. I also have appreciated the privilege to learn from some incred-


BBA, Pacific Lutheran University; MBA, Rutgers University FIRST JOB:

Family cleaning business MY PHILOSOPHY:

Make a difference. FAMILY:

Daughters, Ynette and Aisha; grandson Josiah; seven siblings

ible, inspirational people along the way and look for ways to share the lessons I have learned with others. One of the lessons I like to share relates to the “three C’s of credit,” which credit professionals consider when determining whether to extend credit: character, capacity, and collateral. The “three C’s” are important foundational principles in financial education that everyone should be aware of, but they also can be applied to the following life principles: Character – Be your word. Be prepared to work hard to reach your goals. Don’t be envious of what others have. Capacity – Live within your means. Make a conscious decision to have reserves in every aspect of your life. Collateral/Capital – Be willing to invest your resources and put “skin in the game” to reach your goals. You may not think you have much, but cherish what you have. As our country continues to work through the financial crisis, it is important to make financial education readily available and accessible, as well as to find new ways to share resources and collaborate. The greatest gift of education is the ability to share it. I encourage everyone to make a positive difference by finding his or her own way to share what they have learned with others. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Linda K.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP



Chicago, Illinois WEBSITE:

“As important as knowing what to do is HOW to get it done.”


Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? At many points in my career being a woman has been an advantage. Kirkland is eager to promote diversity, and being a diverse lawyer helped me to get noticed and gave me a leg up.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My high school French teacher. She served in the French Resistance in WWII. She taught me that women can do anything.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? Time management is critical. I get up early to exercise, review emails, spend time with my kids, and drop them off at school. I organize weekends to maximize family time. When traveling for work, I spend time with my Kirkland colleagues to maintain close relationships with them and I choose my philanthropic activities smartly.

ARNING ANY ADVANCED DEGREE IS A TREMENDOUS ACCOMPLISHMENT. But while higher education is often a prerequisite in today’s job market, women need more than formal schooling if they are to succeed in greater numbers. They need informal, internal education that includes visibility into organizational dynamics, including the political landscape of their workplace. As important as knowing what to do is how to get it done. With work experience, that internal education can transform women employees into leaders. Finding a sponsor and learning from that person is essential to career advancement. I’ve been lucky enough to have two at Kirkland & Ellis. One is a senior private equity partner and now the chairman of our global management committee. The other is co-head of our restructuring practice who is also a member of the firm’s global management committee. Both are men. My sponsors placed tremendous faith in my abilities and gave me opportunities to shine with key clients. They promoted me internally at Kirkland. And importantly, they have been generous with their time and counsel in ways that have allowed me to gain insight into firm management mat-





1,518 TITLE:


BA, University of Wisconsin-Madison; JD, Georgetown University FIRST JOB:

Salesperson at a clothing boutique MY PHILOSOPHY:

From those who have much, much is expected. FAMILY:

Husband, Dennis; children: Megan, Ryan, and Brendan

ters much more quickly than if I was learning on my own. The guidance I have received from them has made me passionate about helping younger lawyers to succeed by providing them opportunities to grow professionally and personally, and giving them support and encouragement as their careers progress. I was one of the founders of the Kirkland Women’s Leadership Initiative (WLI), which provides training and networking opportunities for women attorneys. I have worked hard with other women leaders to expand WLI’s scope and reach to our ten offices around the world. WLI has been a valuable resource in recruiting and retaining talented women. The focus of much of our programming is giving our women that “inside scoop” that helps them become more attuned to the organizational particulars of Kirkland. Businesses need to find more ways to facilitate and reward these sponsorship relationships that will help talented, welleducated women gain insight into the internal landscape within their organization and allow them to translate their great ideas into reality. Only then will more women get the leadership recognition necessary for more broad-based advancement.

September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner HEADQUARTERS:


Global economic forum EMPLOYEES: 10 TITLE: President EDUCATION:

MA, MPhil, Columbia University; Doctor of Humane Letters, Long Island University and Marymount College FIRST JOB:

Teaching English at Lehman College of CUNY MY PHILOSOPHY: Take a

risk and shift gears when opportunity at leadership comes to you. I gave up the security of academia for leadership of an advocacy group, which provided a bigger ‘stage’ for what I wanted to do. FAMILY:

Married with one son




› How has your education affected your career? I can articulate and analyze, which is critical to advocacy work. I see the whole amid the details. I understand the value of communication in whatever form to convince those to share one’s vision.


THINK WOMEN ARE BASICALLY “IMMIGRANTS” TO THE CORPORATE AND PROFESSIONAL WORLD, WHOSE CULTURE, SYSTEMS AND LANGUAGE HAVE BEEN DESIGNED BY AND FOR MEN, WHO REMAIN RESOLUTELY IN CHARGE. While women have overpopulated colleges and universities, which have landed many at the midmanagement level, few are called to partnerships, senior management, let alone CEO status. In a report just released by Corporate Women Directors International on Women Directors in the World’s Largest Banks, we found a higher percentage of board seats held by women (15.6%) in these financial institutions than the percentage of women in senior management (12.2%). In the U.S, this discrepancy is difficult to explain, since the majority of accounting degrees are earned by women and the majority of mid-level managers as well as employees in banks and financial services companies are also female. The response to date is basically to fix the leadership gap by “fixing” the women through education in how to succeed in a male-dominated work culture. Teach them how to negotiate better, network wider internally and externally, communicate, work in teams, develop their personal branding, find a mentor, or a sponsor. However, for real change benefiting women to occur, systemic change must take place as well. Europe has taken the lead in addressing this leadership gap by fixing the system for recruiting board directors through quotas. As a strategy, quotas have worked and the numbers of European female directors have increased. Quota is a dirty word in the U.S., but there is a simple thing that can be done— to redefine achievement in terms of results as opposed to face time at the office. Flexibility is valued by male and female employees alike, so this change in where and how work is done can benefit everyone and not stigmatize women. This will lead to a change in work culture that will enable women to weave work and personal responsibilities together without gaps in their career that costs them in the long run. What can universities do? Ideally, curricula should incorporate the skills training now done by companies or professional firms, so that women students are prepared earlier on. Women executives and successful entrepreneurs should be brought on campus as role models to share lessons learned and what is reachable. Cooperative programs where work experiences are integrated into a student’s course work should be encouraged. None of this happens, however, without an understanding on the part of university leadership that they are not only preparing students to be citizens of the world, but also for the world of work. Do all you can to equip yourself to be a leader (get your “smarts” early). Be observant of the organizational culture and the protocols. Get coaches, mentors, and sponsors—and do it early, often, and formally. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Toyota Motor North America, Inc.

Newton ›What advice would you give younger women about their education? In today’s environment where there are long payback periods for investment in higher education, I’d advise young women to look at that period of study as a way not only to acquire knowledge, but also to build a personal brand and a network that will provide benefit over time. I’d also remind them to enjoy it—exploring options and building relationships is more fun in your 20s than in your 40s.


HIS YEAR, 140 WOMEN PER EVERY 100 MEN WILL EARN POST-SECONDARY DEGREES. Yet only 18 women are leading Fortune 500 companies—and that three percent is a record! McKinsey reports that nearly three-quarters of all executives believe that more women in leadership roles would drive better financial performance and multiple studies prove that such leadership benefits the bottom-line. So what’s going wrong and what can we do about it? Our collective narrative tells us we must do a better job of nurturing our women leaders and removing the obstacles that keep them from rising to the C-suite. I agree. It’s become clear, however, that this strategy alone isn’t sufficient. More than 50 years after the birth of the modern feminist movement, women today occupy 53 percent of entry-level positions, 40 percent of manager positions, but only 19 percent of senior executive jobs. The success that bright, ambitious, and talented women achieve in education is steadily eroded in the business world. We need to appoint more women to top positions now. And that’s not just in pursuit of best hiring practices—it’s smart business strategy. In my view, we can eliminate barriers only if a critical mass of women are advocating from the top. We need to change the culture of how we think leaders should lead, what they might look like, and the importance of whether a “Mr.” or “Ms.” precedes their names. Men dominate leadership positions in most industries, including nonprofit. Most men and women would agree that there is often tension between a woman’s approach to leadership and what we all have come to expect. This might be due to preconceptions of an ideal leader, which reflect our dominant male culture. So how do companies flex to accommodate diversity in leadership? Organizations must work to discern their own patterns of talent management. Despite good intentions, the executives currently in the C-suite are not best equipped to spot these often-subtle trends. It’s imperative that companies get a critical mass of women into positions of influence to help identify and address these dynamics. We need to appoint women at the top now—and use their experience to help eliminate the cultural barriers that prevent women from seeking and earning leadership roles. Only then will we be in a position to reap the benefits of the unique perspectives of female leadership that can help drive an organization’s future success.

“Organizations must work to DISCERN

their own patterns of talent management.” 176


September/October 2012


New York City WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Automotive REVENUES: $224 billion EMPLOYEES: 37,000 TITLE: Vice President, North America Corporate Strategy EDUCATION:

BS, Kettering University FIRST JOB:

Pre-grad, fashion model; post-grad, machinery and equipment buyer MY PHILOSOPHY:

There is more value in serving those reporting to me than serving those above me. FAMILY: Married to my best

friend, Jim, and with five siblings, I have the joy of being "Aunt Ton" to 12 nieces and nephews

DRIVE. It builds great cars, and great leaders. We celebrate the achievements of all of this year’s “Women Worth Watching,” and we’re especially proud to congratulate our friend, colleague and team member, Latondra Newton. Her drive inspires us all.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


CEVA Logistics

O’Brien “Young women today should think on a global scale and plan to be working with and in OTHER COUNTRIES throughout their careers.” › How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? It is something you have to focus on every single day. I take advantage of flexible work arrangements, like CEVA offers, and I remain extraordinarily flexible rather than having precise expectations of how I will manage each day. I “roll with the punches.” › What advice would you give younger women about their education? Education is the one thing no one can ever take away from you so do not “give it away” by failing to take advantage of your opportunity to get an education.


HAVE COME TO BELIEVE THAT TO BE SUCCESSFUL, ONE MUST ALWAYS BE OPEN TO CONTINUOUS LEARNING AND IMPROVEMENT, AND BE WILLING TO TAKE ON NEW CHALLENGES. I’ve been fortunate to have the opportunity to oversee a global legal team which has broadened my horizons and provided opportunities to continue my lifelong learning journey. For example, I have navigated anti-corruption, antitrust, and trade legislation across the world, and focused on continually improving the compliance program to meet the ever-changing landscape and deliver value to the organization. While working in a global environment across multiple continents might sound daunting, it’s in fact the ideal scenario for expanding knowledge. I’ve learned that while our cultures differ: how we look, dress, greet each other, conduct ourselves in business, and govern ourselves, we are all still people at the end of the day with similar goals and concerns. If approached with an open mind, a spirit of collaboration, and a thirst for knowledge, working together is not difficult, it’s an energizing learning process. Opportunities abound around the world for the upcoming generation of business people. Emerging markets like Brazil, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and China comprise just a small sample of countries that offer growth opportunities for future generations. One should not fear working overseas or with other cultures—embrace it for the adventure, education, and experience. I’ve gained so much personal satisfaction from learning how to work effectively across cultures to achieve results in challenging environments. Young women should plan to be working with and in other countries throughout their careers. They can set themselves apart by doing so. They can begin learning second and third languages, study overseas, travel, and expose themselves to cultures through the food they choose to eat, the people they befriend, and the places they go. They can enhance their early learning by choosing to major in international studies, international business, or another globally-focused area. Gaining exposure to new cultures and continually challenging oneself ensures a constant flow of education opportunities throughout a career. It is deeply rewarding on a professional and personal level.



September/October 2012


Hoofddorp, The Netherlands WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Supply chain management REVENUES: $6.9 billion EMPLOYEES: 51,000 TITLE:

Chief Legal Officer EDUCATION:

BA, Trinity University; JD, University of Texas FIRST JOB:

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP MY PHILOSOPHY:

Give it your best effort. Live with a positive attitude. Find the joy in it, no matter what. FAMILY:

Husband and five children together


women. Embracing




Some of the world’s greatest executives are women. Their knowledge, desire to succeed in the workforce, ability to create their own opportunities, and passion for strengthening their communities is just part of what makes them extraordinary leaders. At Booz Allen Hamilton, we believe different backgrounds and experiences contribute to the most innovative ideas, which in turn drive better results for clients. If you’re looking to do work that makes an impact at a firm that’s committed to helping you achieve your professional and personal goals, Booz Allen could be what’s next for you. View our current job opportunities at


Embracing differences, creating possibilities, growing together -- that's what diversity is all about. Unilever understands the importance of diversity and that's why it is a critical component of our business strategy and an integral part of everything we value and do. Special congratulations to our 2013 Women Worth Watching award recipient Heather Pomerantz, for her ongoing contributions to Unilever and the Finance organization.

For more information, visit

Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Vicki O'Meara, Pitney Bowes • Kim Pope, WilsonHCG • Kizzy M. Parks, K. Parks Consulting, Inc. • Jeanine L. Prime, Catalyst, Inc. Allyson Peerman, AMD • Shemin V. Proctor, Andrews Kurth LLP • Laurinda Pang, Level 3 Communications • Julia Poston, Ernst & Young Kimberly F. Price, 3M • Heather Pomerantz, Unilever • Diana M. Peninger, Celanese Corporation • Anna-Maria Gonzalez Palmer, AAI Corporation




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Pitney Bowes



Stamford, Connecticut WEBSITE:


HATTERING THE GLASS CEILING IS NOT ONLY IN THE BEST INTEREST OF WOMEN, IT IS IN THE BEST INTEREST OF GLOBAL BUSINESS. A recent study by Goldman Sachs found that simply closing the gender gap in Europe could boost gross domestic product by up to 13 percent. As companies seek to attract and retain the best talent, they must provide equal opportunity and compensation and remove the barriers for women. Having held senior leadership positions in the U.S. government, the legal sector, and two Fortune 500 companies, I can personally attest that the barriers to advancement and the compensation gap for women have shrunk substantially in the last two decades. While progress has been made, inequity remains. Today, women represent nearly half of employees in the U.S., but there are only 18 women CEOs among the Fortune 500 and women hold only 15 percent of the board seats at large U.S. corporations. And despite the growing number of highly educated women entering the workforce—approximately 80 percent with a college or advanced degree—the gap in compensation persists. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the ratio of women’s to men’s earnings, for all occupations, was just over 81 percent in 2010. Not fully engaging the talents of half the population takes a big toll. McKinsey revealed that the operational profit of companies with the most women on boards was 56 percent higher than those with men only. Another telling example is that over the last ten years, women started twice as many privately-owned companies in the U.S. as men. To put this into perspective, women-owned companies now employ more people than the largest 500 companies combined. What can companies do? The answer is to embrace diversity, make work more family-friendly, and remove barriers. I am proud to be part of Pitney Bowes, where diversity is an integral part of the history and culture. Dating back to the 1940s, the company set the stage for creating a diverse workforce by taking a very active role in hiring women and minorities. Those efforts, which were recognized by the National Urban League in 1949 and hundreds of diversity awards since, created a very solid foundation for women and minorities to excel at all levels of our company. I’m confident that businesses around the world will continue to recognize the value of gender diversity in their senior management and board ranks and balance the scales for opportunity and compensation among women and men.



September/October 2012


Customer communication management REVENUES:

$5.3 billion EMPLOYEES:

29,000 TITLE:

Executive VP & President, Pitney Bowes Services Solutions EDUCATION:

BA, Cornell University; MA, George Washington University; JD, Northwestern University FIRST JOB:


Servant leadership

› How has your education affected your career? It opened new horizons. › What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? You should take whatever inspires you. ›

What does it take to succeed in your position? Vertical agility— set high-level strategies and execute on details

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Constant juggling and sleep deprivation ›

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Be adventurous; take risks; pursue what interests you; work hard; think you can.

Anna-Maria Gonzalez

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

AAI Corporation



ESPITE ACCELERATING COSTS AND UNSTABLE ECONOMIC TIMES, LIFELONG LEARNING REMAINS ONE OF THE SMARTEST INVESTMENTS A PERSON CAN MAKE TO ENSURE FUTURE SUCCESS. To level the discussion, it is important to broaden the definition of education. In the aerospace and defense industry, the well-qualified candidate may be a technical or trade school graduate, the recipient of a college or postgraduate degree, or may have achieved professional certification in a critical skill area. Today’s educational landscape is diverse and more accessible than ever before. With the aperture widened on what post-high school education means, it is important to consider its benefits. Studies show that over time, skilled workers are more employable, earn more, and have more opportunities for advancement. However, it would be remiss to ignore the benefits of continued education beyond skill acquisition. The academic environment encourages students to move out of their comfort zones through hard study, teamwork, and the attainment of challenging goals. Students network to learn from the best practices of others; they make valuable observations about how to interact successfully with all personality types; they discover how to budget their time, cope with stress, and make decisions confidently. These aren’t just skills for a successful career, they are skills for a successful life. In the long view, an educational focus is equally beneficial to individual contributors and those in management roles. We realize today that in terms of influence and organizational knowledge, both have critical roles to play. By the same token, staying current over time also increases competency and competitiveness in the marketplace, as well as a person’s network of contacts. This could take the form of self-study, volunteerism, or professional certifications. Apart from the business experience of helping my company form and execute a complex human resources strategy domestically and internationally, my personal experience mirrors this advice. Growing up in Pittsburgh, many of my peers moved from high school to well-paid factory jobs. There were many inducements to take that path, and not many examples of successful college graduates on which I could model a different path forward. Yet every bit of education I have attained since, both degreed studies and professional studies, translated directly into career opportunities and the personal success skills mentioned earlier. In short, only you can attain your goals for career success. Where better to invest your time and resources than yourself?

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I intermingle the two. My kids know that I’ll always respond to their texts or calls during the day, but after dinner, I’ll answer emails or prepare for the next day.


Hunt Valley, Maryland WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Aerospace and defense EMPLOYEES: 2,500 TITLE: Vice President, Human Resources and Security EDUCATION:

BS, West Virginia University; MA, The Johns Hopkins University FIRST JOB:

Communications Intern, Westinghouse MY PHILOSOPHY: Three c’s:

courage, compassion, and camaraderie guide my personal and professional interactions. FAMILY: Husband Ramon,

son Michael, and daughter Maria

› What advice would you give younger women about their education? Education today is accessible, flexible, and provides an unmistakable advantage over the span of a career. Taking advantage of technology and cultivating relationships are parallel paths for education. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Level 3 Communications


› What does it take to succeed in your position? Critical thinking, stakeholder management, collaboration, cultural diversity ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? A post-graduate psychology professor inspired my thinking on motivation—how employees provide the customer experience that will ultimately drive the profitability of the organization.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? My family is always my priority, but I’ve accepted that as my career accelerates, so does imbalance. I recognize that I do spend more time at work than at home, but always make the most of my time I do have with my family.


ATHERINE BREWER WAS THE FIRST WOMAN IN THE UNITED STATES TO RECEIVE A BACHELOR’S DEGREE. The year was 1840. One hundred and forty-four years later in 1984, we saw for the first time that more women than men received bachelor’s or master’s degrees. Today, women outpace men by 150 percent in terms of earning post-graduate degrees. We’ve come a long way, but it’s taken a long time! Although critical, formal education alone doesn’t guarantee success in the business world. After immigrating to the U.S., I was the first person in my family to earn a college degree. I chose a liberal arts field to ensure broad exposure to a variety of subjects. This education has proved very valuable, but the education I’ve received in the real world of business has been perhaps even more important to my career development. In order to advance, senior executives must be high-achieving and demonstrate strong critical thinking and leadership competencies. They must also demonstrate maturity and adaptability learned through meaningful and diverse experiences over time—personally, professionally, and culturally. The question then becomes, how do we provide the opportunity for women in the workforce, particularly our high potentials, to gain professional and cultural experiences in addition to their formal education? I’ve had the good fortune of being sponsored, mentored or coached by senior executives throughout my career. They’ve encouraged me to push my personal limits and sometimes take on challenges where I had little or no experience. Without their counsel, I would not have immersed myself in varied functional areas such as human resources, sales, finance, marketing, re-engineering, or working overseas. This “beyond the classroom” education has affected my path to leadership much more than my formal education. Given the opportunities afforded me, I consider it my responsibility and privilege to “pay it forward” and do all that I can to prepare other women for executive roles. Today, there are only 19 women CEOs leading Fortune 500 organizations. Is it reasonable to believe that women could outpace male CEOs in the future, similar to our achievements in education? If so, we can’t wait another 144 years for this to happen. Rather, to ensure that talented women receive the same benefits of effective mentoring and coaching as do talented men, we need the female executives of today to continue “paying it forward.”



September/October 2012


Broomfield, Colorado WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Global telecommunications REVENUES:

$6 billion EMPLOYEES:

10,700 TITLE:

Chief Human Resources Officer EDUCATION:

BA, Pennsylvania State University FIRST JOB:

Retail Manager, Plaza Hotel MY PHILOSOPHY:

Don’t spend much time on items out of your control; focus your efforts on where you can make a difference. FAMILY:

Married with two daughters

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Dr. Kizzy M.



K. Parks Consulting, Inc.

“EDUCATION is the primary means by which

individuals are able to perform highly-specialized jobs...”

HE REALITY IS THAT INDIVIDUALS WHO ONLY HOLD A HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMA MAY NEVER REALIZE SIMILAR PROFESSIONAL ACHIEVEMENTS AS INDIVIDUALS WHO HOLD A COLLEGE DEGREE. Traditionally, an education results in greater human resource capital and worth to an organization. Furthermore, education is the primary means by which individuals are able to perform highly-specialized jobs, which are often associated with higher pay than jobs which do not have such requirements. A national survey conducted between 2006 and 2008 found that the median earning for individuals holding only a high school diploma was approximately $22,000, whereas the median earning for individuals holding a bachelor’s degree was approximately $43,000, meaning that the earnings for HEADQUARTERS: individuals whose highest eduMelbourne, Florida cational attainment is their high school diploma is WEBSITE: nearly half that of one with a bachelor’s BUSINESS: degree. Moreover, Professional unemployment rates management solutions for individuals with a TITLE: bachelor’s degree are President

8.9 percent, 22.9 percent for individuals with a high school diploma, and 31.5 percent for high school dropouts. These differences become even more pronounced when one makes comparisons between college majors as well as comparisons between gender and ethnicity. The value of a college degree has also changed over the years. As the economy continues to recover from the recession, the demand for jobs has created a shift in the power between employers and employees. More applicants exist than positions, and employers can afford to choose the most qualified individuals. Often this correlates to individuals with the most education and experience. Individuals who hold degrees which can be applied in either health care or education have the best employment rates, with architects and hospitality degrees having the highest level of unemployment due to the housing crisis and decrease in tourism due to the economy. Ironically, those with technology diplomas are currently also seeing the effect of the recession; however they are also expected to make the biggest recovery due to the high demand for technology and information systems. Despite the current economic status, holding a college diploma can potentially buffer substantial economic hardships and result in a faster career rebound. Therefore, a more concentrated emphasis on earning a college degree is vital to achieving long-term career success and resiliency.


PhD, Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, Florida FIRST JOB:

Telemarketer for a vacuum supplier

› How has your education affected your career? Higher education provided the conduit to live my passion daily. With it, I have been afforded career opportunities that otherwise would have been unattainable.


Anything is possible through collaboration.


My family is my epicenter and has always served at the core of my support system.

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? I encourage all aspiring leaders to take at least one psychology course. Understanding the foundation of human behavior is a key to leadership success.

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Talented people, advocates, passion, patience, resilience, and humor September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Allyson › What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Critical thinking, communications, team management, and global awareness ›

What does it take to succeed in your position? Vision, strategic relationships, project management, and communications skills

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Not one, but three: Ruth Porter, second grade; Mable Scott, high school writing; Margaret Wisdom, journalism (who led me to my vocation)


Sunnyvale, California WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Information technology/ semiconductors REVENUES: $6.7 billion EMPLOYEES: 11,700 TITLE:

Corporate Vice President, Global Public Affairs EDUCATION:

BJ, University of Texas FIRST JOB:

Saturday receptionist, Womac Bros. Beauty Salon

Advanced Micro Devices (AMD)



ITTLE DID I KNOW WHEN I MET FRANK MCBEE IN 1981 THAT HE WOULD IGNITE MY PASSION FOR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND EDUCATION. An accomplished engineer and Austin’s first Fortune 500 CEO, Frank believed strongly that education was the great equalizer. Due to his influence, I’ve helped several business and education coalitions become more strategic. Through the years, we’ve created a global reputation for advocating and investing in innovative STEM programming at AMD. Changing the Game allows middle and high school students to learn STEM by creating their own digital games on social issues. Beyond STEM, they also learn teamwork, problem solving, critical thinking, communications, and global awareness. Yet the students are often so engaged they don’t realize all they’re learning. The program has a high degree of interest with young girls, who gravitate to its project-oriented, hands-on approach. The NextGen Engineer (NGE) initiative promotes multidisciplinary learning within engineering programs to better prepare new engineers to innovate and lead across the global landscape. Today, that requires both deep technical proficiency, and strong skills in teamwork, communications, problem solving, and cultural literacy. These “soft” skills are often the areas where young women excel, and this form of education is particularly attractive to Millennials and young women who want to solve global problems and leave a positive mark on the world. I believe we turn off many potential STEM enthusiasts, because our classrooms (from middle school through post-secondary) are still structured as they were 30 years ago. Yet the world has changed radically. By providing hands-on, relevant engineering programs and curricula, we can attract and retain more men and women in engineering, so that the U.S. can remain a leader in research, innovation, and technology.


All meaningful work gets done through relationships. FAMILY:

Husband Robert, daughters, Lander and Megan


“ By providing HANDS-ON, relevant engineering programs and curricula, we can attract and retain more men and women in engineering, so that the U.S. can remain a leader in research, innovation, and technology.”


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Diana M. ›

What does it take to succeed in your position? Get people with passion and the right experience on your team. Always stretch beyond what you think your capabilities are.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Get a strong, broad, advanced education foundation in something you enjoy. Use that foundation to go after your passion.


Dallas, Texas WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Food products REVENUES: $6.8 billion EMPLOYEES: 7,600 TITLE: Vice President, General Manager EDUCATION:

BS, South Dakota School of Mines & Technology FIRST JOB:

Plant process engineer MY PHILOSOPHY:

Continuously getting better at anything that is important to you: personal relationships, being a mom, business, and sports. Learning is part of you, like breathing. FAMILY:

Husband, two sons

Celanese Corporation



COLLEGE PROFESSOR ONCE TOLD ME I WOULDN’T MAKE IT THROUGH MY FRESHMAN YEAR. Determined to prove to myself he was wrong, I focused on succeeding—through college and career. From that day, I set my sights on collecting the knowledge, skills, emotional intelligence, and support system needed to reach my goals. I now champion programs to help tomorrow’s generation do the same. In today’s dynamic global environment, it’s difficult for schools to keep up with which programs to add, how to structure them to meet changing needs, and implementation. They need our assistance. We can help guide local school systems to focus on curriculum to help students better prepare for life and work roles. School administrators often don’t have the experiences in the business world, and they appreciate the insight. Recently I helped a local international school rethink their high school science classes to stimulate students’ creativity on how environment and industry coexist to better connect with what’s on students’ minds. We can also help teach the importance of continuously learning. From sports to school and parenting to business, learning is like breathing. It’s automatic and necessary to survive starting at a young age. And it doesn’t stop on graduation day. With lightning speed technological advances, the capability to apply what’s learned and be open to others’ ideas is critical to success. Those of us in the industry need to show the way. Join me in mentoring and supporting others in our organizations to do the same. By sharing knowledge and insight, we can help them build confidence and make a profound and direct impact on young people’s lives. I distinctly remember a shy young woman from a high school career day who barely raised her head but continuously asked questions. Now she is getting her chemical engineering degree with more confidence than ever. That confidence she had to go after what she wants sticks with me. As organizational leaders, we can support and contribute to STEM in schools around the world to improve students’ skills at all ages. Junior Achievement, scholarship programs, and other national and regional programs have structures in place. Internship programs at our workplaces will also provide invaluable first-hand experience to high school and college students. By helping build young men and women’s thirst for knowledge, we will set the path for motivated and innovative people who will continue to make the world a better place. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Consumer packaged goods REVENUES: ¤46.5 billion EMPLOYEES: 171,000 TITLE: Finance Director,

US Customer Development EDUCATION:

BS, The Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania; MBA, Columbia University FIRST JOB:

Management consultant at PricewaterhouseCoopers MY PHILOSOPHY:

Taking the time to develop the people on your team is the most important time investment you can make. FAMILY:

Husband Scott, son Tyler, and two dogs, Austin and Utah




F YOU ASKED ME WHEN I WAS 18-YEARS-OLD WHY I WAS PLANNING TO GO TO COLLEGE, MY ANSWER PROBABLY WOULD HAVE BEEN SOMETHING SIMPLE LIKE, “BECAUSE YOU HAVE TO IN ORDER TO GET A GOOD JOB,” OR “BECAUSE MY PARENTS SAID SO." While I do believe having a college degree is a key enabler to having a successful professional career, the value of the college experience is so much broader than that. One of the most valuable aspects of my college experience was to help me answer the question “what do you want to be when you grow up.” In my freshman year at the University of Pennsylvania, my career pursuit went from doctor to architect to broadcaster to psychologist. It wasn’t until my sophomore year that I began to take some business courses and found that a career in business was the best fit for me. College gave me the invaluable time to explore my interests through coursework, clubs, and engaging with fellow students and professors to best answer that lifelong question. A second key benefit of college was to learn how to work in and lead teams. It is hard to find a workplace where working in teams is not the norm. College provided an important practice ground to deal with the many different challenges of working in teams, such as organizing and delegating work, dealing with conflict, and motivating a team member who is not engaged. As someone who enjoys leading teams, I had many opportunities to take on that responsibility and learn from my mistakes in a safe environment. Finally, I learned how to balance hard work with my personal interests and having fun. While I was inundated with a huge amount of coursework, I made sure to dedicate time to my personal passions, which included community service, being a leader in my sorority, and spending time with my friends. I knew how important it was to have a well-rounded college experience, and this has now translated into how I currently balance my life. While I was working extremely hard, I always made sure I was having fun along the way, and this is truly how I now live my life. As I reflect on this very important time in my life, the one person I have to thank the most is my mom. Not only did she push me to work hard through all my years of school, but she also supported me to attend a top university, even when faced with the barriers of high tuition fees and others around us who were disputing the value of this opportunity. For those who are currently facing this critical decision for themselves or their children, I hope these ideas will help provide some insights to just how valuable a college experience truly is. ›




Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My mom is the most influential educator of all for me. She taught me that the most important thing in life is to be confident. I remember her words of wisdom before going to present for the first time to a group of very senior executives. She said, “Heather, all you have to be is confident. If you are confident when presenting to them, they will be confident in you.”

September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner




Recruitment process outsourcing EMPLOYEES:


Pope “To create OPPORTUNITIES, such as sales trainings for students to learn real world lessons, both employers and students succeed.”




Vice President of Recruitment Solutions EDUCATION:

BS, Appalachian State University FIRST JOB:


Be a person with a curious mind, aching mentality, and a determination to grow. FAMILY:

My wonderful husband Justin, and my dogs Marley and Griffin

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Students should engage in any leadership program that teaches important life skills, such as self-examination, people skills, and decision-making acumen.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Mr. Johnston had a profound impact on my career. He constantly encouraged his students to work together and to be driven. He fostered a group work environment and group discussions, where each person had a contribution. The more fun and interesting he made the syllabus, the more heart we put into it and it motivated the class on a daily basis.

S A RESULT OF EVOLVING BUSINESS PRACTICES, PREPARING STUDENTS FOR THEIR FUTURE CAREERS HAS BECOME INCREASINGLY CHALLENGING IN HIGHER EDUCATION. Nationwide, colleges and universities lack professional mentorship programs necessary to arm students with the skills to succeed in today’s world. Given the level of competition and the rate of change, it is essential for students to become as well-rounded as possible to enhance their chances of real world success. In order for students to be prepared to meet these challenges, career coaching and development programs partnered with businesses must be a priority for all majors. Employers are no longer just looking for technical skills and a degree, they value expertise in communication, team work, and effective time management. All of these skills can be acquired through business mentorship programs and internships initiated through business partnerships. Many students with college degrees enter into the workforce lacking the basic proficiencies to succeed in the office, including reading comprehension, writing skills, strong work ethic, and professionalism. To solve this problem, we consistently encourage our clients to partner with local colleges to help prepare graduates. When businesses partner with colleges to create opportunities, such as sales trainings for students to learn real world lessons, both employers and students succeed. Although I always considered my own scholastic career an excellent one, I was not adequately prepared for the business world after graduation. As a political science major, I watched my peers within the business school be afforded exposure to local business leaders, an opportunity that allowed those students to gain knowledge outside of traditional curriculum. Throughout my years in the corporate sector, I have fortunately had the chance to work with several Fortune 500 organizations and participate in an abundance of successful college recruitment programs. It has been an eye-opening experience. Students given the opportunity of professional mentorship programs are better prepared for what it takes to succeed in this ever-changing landscape of corporate America. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Ernst & Young


› What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Courses in the humanities/liberal arts give you a broader sense of history and how the world works, and help you understand how to motivate, inspire, and lead people. ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? First, my dad, who was a college professor, and secondly, one of my first business professors was fanatical about being prepared for class and not winging it. I’ve carried that message throughout my career.

› How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Sometimes the firm wins, sometimes I win. The key is to be transparent about your needs for flexibility.


ORE U.S. WOMEN ARE EARNING COLLEGE DEGREES THAN MEN, YET WOMEN LAG BEHIND THEM IN ATTAINING THE HIGHEST RANKS IN CORPORATE AND PUBLIC LEADERSHIP. Why is that? First, women don’t self-promote. They often think that if they put their heads down and work hard, they’ll be recognized. But if they don’t assertively ask for things, they may still advance but will move forward much more slowly. At the heart of this behavior is that women fear negative perception. It can be difficult to walk the line—to be more aggressive, savvy, and assertive, but not to be offensive. To get to the higher levels, it’s essential to have executive and boardroom presence, as well as the perceived ability to sell more work. All require assertiveness. To break through this fear, women often have to recognize their conditioning. Women wait for an invitation. This translates to a workplace where women are less likely to ask for a plum assignment, a promotion, or mentoring. That’s why it’s so helpful to have male mentors—they push you to be more assertive. When I say, “It feels pushy,” they say, “Are you kidding? That’s how we do it!” And many women lack mentoring—from both men and other women. To be successful, women must ask for help, feedback, and career counseling. You need to have several mentors. And you need to ask honest and direct questions and be ready to hear the answers. Women also tend to skip the “boys’ club” activities where informal mentoring takes place. These include golfing, drinks after work, and so on—and they’re the places where a lot of work gets done and advice is dispensed. They have to make the time for it, which is difficult when women are juggling home and work. As women begin to have families, they’re often focused on trying to manage busy lives and they don’t always think about their long-term career outlook. And this can lead to women stalling in the ranks or leaving the workforce. Do all you can to equip yourself to be a leader. Be observant of the organizational culture and the protocols. Get coaches, mentors and sponsors—and do it early, often, and formally.

“To be SUCCESSFUL, women must

ask for help, feedback, and career counseling.” 190


September/October 2012


London, England WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Assurance, tax, transaction, and advisory services REVENUES:

$22.9 billion EMPLOYEES:

152,000 TITLE:

Cincinnati Office Managing Partner EDUCATION:

BS, Miami University FIRST JOB:

Staff Accountant, Arthur Andersen MY PHILOSOPHY:

Always be honest and always be positive. FAMILY:

Husband and three children

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Kimberly F.


Price “The mentoring, corporate and community relationships, and maternal lessons, individually and collectively, resulted in the most significant LESSONS learned.”


STAND AS A REPRESENTATIVE OF THE MANY PEOPLE WHO HAVE EMBRACED EDUCATION. Education has made a significant impact on my life; education can take you anywhere, no matter where you begin. Growing up in the inner city of Washington, D.C., my mother was my first and best teacher. My mother stressed the importance of education as a path to transformation. My dad died when I was 11, and my mother always instilled in her three children to soar beyond their circumstances. Education was the mode of transportation. This maternal encouragement resulted in my attending Bowdoin, pursuing graduate opportunities at Princeton, and professional studies at Columbia. The formal education I received is second to none—and I remain extremely grateful to this day. I learned equally (if not more) from the education I received outside of the corridors of academia. The mentoring I received from my caretakers and the “schooling” emanating from my 3M corporate community endeavors provided the foundation for my current professional role. Mentors and sponsors served as my ad hoc board of directors. The charitable organizations where I volunteered (children’s hospitals, Girls Scouts, community centers, schools, and churches) allowed me to build teams, practice strategies, learn governance, and implement management techniques before bringing them back to my employer, 3M. These were amazingly transferable in the mergers and acquisitions practice I previously pursued for twenty-five years. The mentoring, corporate and community relationships, and maternal lessons, individually and collectively, resulted in the most significant lessons learned. Those lessons are: when you learn—teach; when you get—give; what you desire can be your destiny. As we are all blessed with skills, talents, and abilities, use them to benefit others and nourish your soul. These teachings have carried me from Washington D.C. to the Ivy League and to the calling of my career, 3M Vice President of Community Affairs and the 3M Foundation. And so, I end where I began. I stand here as a representative of the many who were able to achieve their dreams through the power and promise of education. Embrace education! September/October 2012

How has your education affected your career? Education provided an avenue to and abundance of access and opportunity.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm, who was a former teacher; her life motivated me. She spoke these words to me: “Aim high.”

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Faith is the foundation of my life. As such, all things come together for good.


St. Paul, Minnesota WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Global innovation REVENUES: 30 billion EMPLOYEES: 84,000 TITLE: Vice President of Community Affairs and 3M Foundation EDUCATION:

BA, Bowdoin College; MPA, Princeton University; JD, Columbia University School of Law FIRST JOB: Clerk typist in

junior high school MY PHILOSOPHY:

To whom much is given, much is expected. FAMILY: Husband, mom,

three children, sister, and a caring community



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner



Nonprofit REVENUES:

15.8 million EMPLOYEES: 82 TITLE:

Vice President, Research EDUCATION:

BA, Spelman College; MBA, State University of New York at Binghamton; PhD, Cornell University FIRST JOB:

Sales representative at The Limited MY PHILOSOPHY:

Keep learning. FAMILY:

Married, mother of a 3-year-old

Jeanine L.

Catalyst, Inc.



CCORDING TO CATALYST RESEARCH, LESS THAN 4 PERCENT OF FORTUNE 500 CEOS AND ONLY 14 PERCENT OF EXECUTIVE OFFICERS IN FORTUNE 500 COMPANIES ARE WOMEN—DESPITE THE FACT THAT WOMEN HOLD MORE THAN 50 PERCENT OF MANAGEMENT AND PROFESSIONAL OCCUPATIONS IN THE U.S. WORKFORCE. In recent years, progress has stalled considerably, and the gap between what men are paid and what women are paid for the same work persists. The key to closing these gaps does not lie in “fixing women.” Contrary to popular belief, women are not forfeiting opportunities to advance in the workplace by not being ambitious enough or proactive enough in managing their careers, or by taking time off to have children. Women are doing all the right things, including getting the credentials they need—in fact, they are out-earning men in bachelor’s degrees, master’s degrees and doctorates—and occupying just over half of the managerial and professional feeder positions for corporate leadership. Yet Catalyst research shows that whether or not women choose to become parents, and whether they step off or remain on traditional career paths, they continue to lag behind men in advancement, compensation rates, and career satisfaction. Why? Our research points to some clues. A recent Catalyst study found that women advanced in the workplace as quickly as their male counterparts only when they were closely connected to powerful allies. One of the biggest bars to women’s professional advancement is their continued exclusion from the powerful networks that drive decision-making in the corporate world. When women are on the outside of these networks, they often miss out on critical opportunities for advancement, including access to capital and informational resources—quite likely without even knowing it. Because men still dominate these networks in most organizations, and people tend to form relationships along gender lines, it can be hard for women to break in. It’s crucial for companies to address this problem by bringing men into the conversation and engaging them as allies in the push for gender equality in the workplace. Women’s exclusion is rarely the result of deliberate actions on the part of men, who are often unaware of how the relationships they establish among themselves adversely affect women and organizations. Raising men’s awareness of these issues and encouraging them to develop professional relationships with female colleagues—through talent development, mentoring, and sponsorship programs—are essential to creating workplaces in which talented women and men have an equally good chance of rising to the top. › What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Psychology and communications. Leadership is about understanding and influencing people— including yourself! › What does it take to succeed in your position? Intellectual curiosity, asking good questions, and hard work › What advice would you give younger women about their education? Get one! And don’t be afraid to bust stereotypes about what women are and are not capable of.



September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Houston, Texas WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Law firm REVENUES: $275 million EMPLOYEES: 829 TITLE: Partner EDUCATION: AB,

Harvard-Radcliffe College; JD, Harvard Law School FIRST JOB: Entrepreneur;

selling anything I thought others would buy: cookies, plants, donuts, etc. MY PHILOSOPHY:

Success is living your life in your own way…reaching for the goals you have set for yourself… being the you that you want to be! FAMILY:

Single; one dog, a fabulous German Shepherd named Maximillian

Shemin V.

Andrews Kurth LLP


› What does it take to succeed in your position? Initiative, determination, perseverance, leadership, and open-mindedness › How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? Equal balance is unrealistic, so I blend my work and lifestyle when possible. For example, I play golf with clients and potential clients. › What advice would you give younger women about their education? Do your best and go to the best schools possible, even if it requires taking a risk, borrowing money, and stepping outside your comfort zone.


DUCATION IS A SIMPLE, INESCAPABLE, “MINIMUM NECESSITY” FOR SUCCESS. My education afforded me the opportunity to pursue any career that I desire. I am a law firm partner, specializing in energy law, who took a traditional educational path—high school, college, and law school. However, when I look at young students today, I realize that a traditional educational path to a traditional career may not be what the Millennial Generation will pursue. While today’s workplace opportunities are evolving at an unprecedented pace, largely due to technological advancements, core educational curricula are falling far short in preparing students to be successful in the workplace of the future. I think there is a shocking de-emphasis on core competencies like logic, expansive reading, spelling, basic math, grammar, speech—the basis of “good thinking.” If schools do not quickly address this deficiency, we will produce a generation of students who are woefully unprepared to enter the workforce. Workplaces are in danger of facing a deficit in entry-level talent sufficient to compete globally. My work in the energy sector convinces me that high schools—private, elite, charter, and public—must focus on STEM subjects, in addition to the core competencies required to fuel imaginative problem solving by future leaders, the Millennials. The world is changing at a record pace and the challenges we face as to the highest and best use of natural resources, among a myriad of other things, will need to be solved by Millennials. A foundation in core competencies such as the STEM subjects, coupled with the ability to think critically and globally, will provide the Millennials tools to blaze new trails and find new solutions to global challenges. This is especially true for women. Education provides women access and the opportunity to excel and achieve in the workplace. Data show that we are all better off when women are involved in innovation and problem solving. After all, women are half (or more) of the population and it will take contributions from all Millennials to ensure a brighter future for us all.

“Education provides women access and the OPPORTUNITY to excel and achieve in the workplace.” September/October 2012



Š2012 Realogy Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Deborah Z. Read, Thompson Hine LLP • Kate Rubin, UnitedHealth Group • Jessica Rodriguez, Univision Communications, Inc. • Charan J. Sandhu, Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP Elissa Ellis Sangster, Forte Foundation • Laura G. Quatela, Eastman Kodak Company • Tanya Reu, Realogy Corporation • Kimberly C. Sawyer, Sandia National Laboratories Namrata Sawant, FedEx Express Pvt. Ltd. • Kristine Santa-Coloma Rohls, Booz Allen Hamilton • Cecilia G. Reyes, Zurich Insurance Company • Guylaine Saint Juste, Capital One Bank




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Laura G.

Rochester, New York WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Digital imaging and printing solutions REVENUES:

$6.8 billion EMPLOYEES: 17,100 TITLE:

President EDUCATION:

BA, Denison University; JD, Case Western Reserve University School of Law FIRST JOB:

In-house attorney at Sears Holdings MY PHILOSOPHY:

When one door closes, another door opens. FAMILY:

Husband and three children

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? I’ve been fortunate to have many inspiring educators. A political science professor named David Sorenson challenged me to think deeply and analytically. A professor named Barry Keenan set me on a path to study Mandarin and attend school in China. And I had a law professor, Mel Durchslag, who helped me keep my head in the game.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Get finance education and training early in your career, no matter which career you’re pursuing, because everything we do has a numbers aspect to it. And understanding how the numbers work is core to success in business.


Eastman Kodak Company



CAME TO KODAK IN 1999 WITH A LIBERAL ARTS EDUCATION AND WORK EXPERIENCE IN THE LEGAL FIELD. These weren’t necessarily the best credentials at a company immersed in digital imaging and printing technologies. Out of the box, however, opportunities to learn from others abounded. I quickly learned how a culture built on the foundation of innovation can foster opportunities for women to strengthen their skills in technology and engineering. We need to encourage more high-potential women to invent. How did professional development for women become important for me? I was given the chance to leave the legal department and work as assistant to the chief financial officer, who took time to act as a mentor. He helped me get my arms around finance—in the context of a highly-complex, global operation. In assigning me to a next role—licensing the company’s fundamental imaging intellectual property—the company took a leap of faith that I could ascend the technology learning curve quickly enough to be successful. I was encouraged and aided in this effort by a host of researchers and inventors who were highly respected in their fields, and generous with their time. What I came to realize is that the company, the CFO, the R&D community, and other Kodak leaders had “sponsored” my career development. By this I mean I was not only mentored—as in, advised about how to advance—but actually tested with job opportunities of increasing responsibility. I see sponsorship as more prone to action than mentoring is. And, having been sponsored myself, I feel a strong obligation to sponsor other women. So, in my view, sponsorship and mentoring are critical arrows in our competitive quiver. In addition, we need to be focused on talent replenishment. As Kodak, GE, IBM, and other legacy R&D companies continue to evolve, foundational technologists are retiring or pursuing new opportunities. To identify and attract the next generation of innovators, we need to forge alliances with universities to instill a new sense of STEM urgency. Beyond this programming, I am deeply interested in the globalization of U.S. education. Given my early involvement in China, I frequently interact with students from Asia who come to the U.S. for high school, college, or graduate studies. They extol the quality of our STEM training but, for many reasons including U.S. immigration restrictions, these bright young women and men graduate and routinely return home to pursue their professional careers. More needs to be done to retain these scientists, technologists, engineers, and mathematicians in the United States to replenish and enrich our talent base and, again, to sharpen our competitiveness as a nation.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Deborah Z.

Thompson Hine LLP



O BE A LEADER IN A GLOBAL ECONOMY, THE U.S. MUST INSPIRE AND ADVANCE A NEW GENERATION OF AMERICAN SCIENTISTS, ENGINEERS, INVENTORS, AND INNOVATORS. Without effective STEM programs, the U.S. will not reclaim its position as the engine of innovation and discovery. And without teaching K-12 students STEM-capable skills, the country will not produce the workforce necessary to fill the jobs its own corporations create; in fact, nearly all jobs will require some type of STEM skill. In an international study of student performance, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation (OECD)—a forum that addresses the challenges of globalization—reports that U.S. students now perform at a level that is significantly lower than students in many other countries in both science and math. The U.S. now ranks 28th in math and 24th in science among 15-year-olds and 20th in the world for the number of 24-year-olds who earn engineering or science degrees. The U.S. ranks lower, for example, than Estonia, Ireland, Latvia, Portugal, and Slovenia, as well as the usual competitors. The U.S. historically was the model for STEM, but now ranks lower than nearly 30 other nations in science and math education. It is especially troubling that gaps in both student participation and degree achievement vary broadly across demographic groups. It’s by now familiar that women are far less likely than men to pursue STEM degrees and that Hispanic and African American students are less likely than white students to do so. There is also a very large gap in STEM degree achievement between students from single-parent families and those from other family types. These statistics underlie the Obama Administration’s support for the advancement of women in STEM careers. At a recent science competition sponsored in part by the White House Council on Women and Girls, President Obama observed that innovation in science, technology, and engineering has historically driven economic success, and that to keep a competitive edge, we must encourage students to aspire to STEM careers. As expressed in a May 1, 2012 White House press release, “[I]increasing the number of women…in [STEM] fields is critical to our Nation’s ability to out-build, out-educate, and out-innovate future competitors.” The U.S. risks regressing in global competition, with an under-educated population that cannot meet the talent needs of its own employers. Collaboration among government, business, educators, and philanthropic funders for the STEM solution is critical. Working together and working smart, we can create an engaged generation of innovators and a skilled workforce that keeps worthy jobs here. September/October 2012

What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Courses that teach you how to think analytically, like philosophy courses and logic in particular

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? When I was a young lawyer on an all-male team, it was assumed by some clients that I had nothing to add to a project. I worked harder and better than others and in most cases ultimately became the preferred team member.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I learned to survive on little sleep, and my husband was a 50 percent partner in raising our child.


Cleveland, Ohio WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Law firm REVENUES: $183.5 million EMPLOYEES: 751 TITLE: Managing Partner EDUCATION:

AB, Ohio University; JD, Boston University School of Law FIRST JOB: After the usual

babysitting and waitressing work as a teenager, my first paid professional job was working for a television station in Athens, Ohio, as a journalism major at Ohio University. MY PHILOSOPHY: Give your-

self fully to your endeavors. FAMILY: Husband John and

daughter Lucie



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Realogy Corporation

Reu ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? A former manager had a profound impact on my career by affording me the opportunity to introduce and implement the “HR business partner” concept to the technology company where I worked. This experience has shaped my perspectives, perseverance, and commitment for continuous improvement.



Parsippany, New Jersey WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Real estate franchising REVENUES:

$4.1 billion EMPLOYEES:

10,500 TITLE:

Senior Vice President, Human Resources, Realogy Franchise Group EDUCATION:

BA, Rutgers College FIRST JOB:

Title office assistant MY PHILOSOPHY:

Be the change you wish to see in the world FAMILY:

Family is the most important aspect of my life.


LTHOUGH WOMEN CONSTITUTE NEARLY 50 PERCENT OF THE U.S. WORKFORCE, WOMEN ARE MARKEDLY UNDERREPRESENTED IN EXECUTIVE POSITIONS AND THE DISCREPANCY IN COMPENSATION BETWEEN FEMALES AND MALES IS STILL PREVALENT. According to The Economist, a mere 3 percent of the CEOs in Fortune 500 companies are women, and on average, women earn only 82 percent of what men earn on a weekly basis. My strong opinion is that organizations need to focus on the trending competitive war in attracting, developing, and retaining high-potential females. Women have surpassed men in attainment of degrees and advanced degrees, are master multi-taskers, strong decision-makers and skilled in conflict resolution, all desirable skills of executive leadership. This is a growing pool of quality candidates that cannot be overlooked, considering that the year 2020 is predicted to bring with it a shortage of qualified executives. For companies to be properly poised for success and for women to be in their deserved roles, organizations need to challenge their historically conventional mindsets and traditional practices. Companies can start by revisiting success measures and embrace a shift from “face time” to “results time.” Companies need to condition their cultures to understand how flexibility in the workplace can enhance productivity rather than hinder it. This will allow organizations to keep pace with attracting current and the next generation of woman executives. Companies should provide leadership development courses and mentoring programs to help close gender gap disparities in the workplace. Women also need to take ownership of necessary actions to earn a rightful seat at the table. It is incumbent on us to help one another ignite this movement. Generally, women have been more competitive with one another than with men. We need to engage in outreach efforts such as peer-to-peer coaching and mentoring programs to assist one another with advancements efforts. Women need to be more direct in communicating career aspirations and expectations with key decision makers and in soliciting feedback openly on areas of improvement. We must continuously exercise transferable skills, actively network, and expand our sphere of influence. We need to exude relentless effort toward learning all aspects of our business and seek opportunities to gain experience in having roles that are customer-facing, revenue-generating, and have fiscal responsibilities. Equally important is the need to get involved in community philanthropic efforts, board participation, and high-profile projects. Those that have a focus on this win-win opportunity will prosper, and together we will change the landscape of women in corporate leadership.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Cecilia G.

Zurich Insurance Group


“Advancement of the humankind, male or female, will not be possible without a good SYSTEM of education.”


ROM A VERY YOUNG AGE THE VALUE OF EDUCATION AND ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT HAS BEEN DEEPLY INGRAINED IN ME BY MY PARENTS. Being eighth of ten siblings, I watched my brothers and sisters achieve academic credentials, so it was just natural for me to follow in their footsteps. For all of them as it is for me now, success financially and professionally in our chosen areas of expertise could not have been achieved without solid academic training. I have seven brothers—perhaps it had been easier for them to succeed because of their gender advantage. For a woman of Asian descent, living and working in a supposedly meritocratic society and the highly-competitive financial industry, achieving senior leadership position would have been virtually impossible without my academic degrees. I was very fortunate that my employers over my entire working life have put tremendous value on this qualification. My education in a highly-reputable academic institution had been the necessary condition to launch my career in finance, although I didn’t know what I was getting into at that time (going to Europe and being on my own), but I trusted the judgment of my finance professor who persuaded me to apply for my PhD in finance at London Business School. Having attained my degree, it opened the door for me to start my career in a senior position, i.e. as a director in a bank. My strong quantitative academic training qualified me for the responsibility to build up and lead a quantitative research team in the asset management operation of one of the major Swiss banks. The value of education is universal in any society. Advancement of the humankind, male or female, will not be possible without a good system of education. It is necessary, albeit not sufficient, for long-term sustainable development of the society. While academic record is a strong signal of your capabilities, it will go a long way towards overcoming institutionalized biases that make it difficult for women to succeed in the work place. One cannot dispute the stark empirical fact that in large corporations the advancement of women to high senior leadership positions faces a lot of structural, institutionalized, and cultural impediments. This has to be addressed because there is also strong empirical evidence that gender diversity makes economic sense. I am convinced, from personal experience, that an edge in academic training goes a long way towards reducing the friction to women’s career advancement. September/October 2012

› What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? It is important that you like what you are studying and that it will facilitate a career that you truly enjoy. ›

What does it take to succeed in your position? Passion, focus on results, teamwork and crosscultural cooperation, embracing and living the values of integrity and humility, caring for people

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My chemistry teacher at school and my finance professor during my MBA studies gave me tremendous encouragement to pursue the highest level of education and convinced me that I can do it.


Zurich, Switzerland WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Multi-line insurance REVENUES: $68.6 billion EMPLOYEES: 60,000 TITLE: Group Chief Investment Officer EDUCATION:

MBA, University of Hawaii; PhD, London Business School FIRST JOB: Credit Suisse

Asset Management - Global Treasury, Securities Trading MY PHILOSOPHY:

My approach is to work hard, outperform expectations, add value, and be a good, caring human being. FAMILY: Large closely-knit

family with seven brothers and two sisters; married for 12 years, two daughters and four grandchildren



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Univision Communications, Inc.

Rodriguez ›

How has your education affected your career? Education has been pivotal and a game changer for me. I was a child growing up in the South Bronx, with immigrant parents who didn’t speak English. No one in my extended family had ever gone beyond graduating high school. Through education, a whole new world of possibilities was open to me and it has been the foundation to a successful professional path.



New York City WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Media REVENUES: $2.27 billion EMPLOYEES: 4,000+ TITLE:

Executive Vice President, Program Scheduling, Univision Networks EDUCATION:

BS, Fordham University; MBA, Stanford University FIRST JOB: My first job was

as a cashier at a retail store when I was 16. MY PHILOSOPHY: Live your

dream. Roll up your sleeves. Be grateful. Never forget where you come from. FAMILY: Eldest daughter of

a Puerto Rican mother and Spanish father; one of five brothers and sisters; proud auntie to six beautiful, bilingual nieces and nephews


S A LATINA WHO WAS BORN AND RAISED IN THE BRONX, NEW YORK, WAGE GAPS AND GLASS CEILINGS WERE CERTAINLY NOT WHAT CAME TO MIND AS I GOT READY FOR SCHOOL EVERY DAY. For me, a good education meant an opportunity to get one step closer to a better future. My parents, like so many others, came to this country in search of a better life. They raised me to believe that the American Dream wasn’t going to be determined by whether I was a woman or Hispanic, but rather by my desire to work hard and give back. As I entered the workforce for the first time, I became aware of the gap that separates women and men in the workplace. Despite boasting higher graduation rates at the bachelor, master, and doctoral levels, according to the National Women’s Law Center American women who work full-time are paid only 77 cents for every dollar their male counterparts make. The wage disparity is even more disconcerting for Hispanic women, who earn weekly wage earnings lower than any other race/ethnic/gender group, at 54 cents to every dollar paid to white, non-Hispanic men. In addition, research from organizations such as Catalyst has shown that in recent years, leadership positions for women have stagnated. C-suite and boardroom seats for women are nearly non-existent, with a mere 3.8 percent of women in Fortune 500 CEO positions and only 16 percent siting on corporate boards. The question we keep asking ourselves is why this happens. What we should really be asking is how we can change this paradigm to ensure increased parity and allow women to be fairly compensated for their contributions. Corporations must reward employees fairly based on accomplishments, promote their growth, and empower them to know they can each make a positive impact on the organization. I am fortunate to work for a company that does just that. We offer women of all backgrounds in our industry, including students, the opportunity to connect with other female leaders who inspire them and with whom they can share their successes and challenges. I am also honored to serve as a commissioner on healthy media for the Girl Scouts of America, working along with other media leaders and subject-related experts to help create a blueprint for our industry to accurately portray female figures in the media. As leaders, it is our responsibility to take the first steps to drive change within our organizations and ensure we close the gap for women in the workplace.


“In recent years, LEADERSHIP positions for women have stagnated.” September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


UnitedHealth Group


“Skills are like muscles: the more you develop them, the STRONGER they, and you, will become.”


N TODAY’S FAST-PACED, DIGITAL WORLD, ONE THING REMAINS CONSTANT: CREATIVE PROBLEM SOLVERS ARE ALWAYS IN DEMAND. Throughout my career, I’ve found that education has been key to gaining the skills and credibility necessary to advance in my career. When I was growing up, the people who inspired me most were my parents; my mother also happened to be my eighth grade math teacher. Both stressed the importance of education and pushed me to try my hardest in all subjects—including math and science, my least favorite subjects. Only after graduating from college and working for IBM did I realize I could apply those fundamental skills to solve real-world challenges in my professional life. By the 1990s I’d worked my way up to lead a $100 million, 100-person technology group. I soon realized that many on-the-job challenges require analytic problem solving skills, like balancing budgets and understanding complex issues quickly. Later I went back to school to gain more skills in human resource development, which helped me transition to a field in which I could combine my passions of business leadership and social change. Today, as head of Social Responsibility at UnitedHealth Group, I am thrilled to be working to address some of the nation’s most pressing issues, including preventing childhood obesity and strengthening tomorrow’s healthcare workforce. I am able to make a difference in causes I care about because of my education, including the math, science, and technology skills that are essential for managing large projects and working with partners to achieve goals. Higher education costs can be difficult for many families to afford, particularly in today’s economy. That’s why I’m proud to help steward United Health Foundation’s Diverse Scholars Initiative, awarding more than $5.3 million in scholarships to nearly 1,000 students from multicultural backgrounds to help them reach their higher education dreams and pursue careers in health. The program helps young people open doors to a brighter future, while promoting diversity in the health work force. I encourage all students to pursue their passions, but also to develop analytic skills, in order to realize their dreams and become problem solvers in today’s business world. Skills are like muscles: the more you develop them, the stronger they, and you, will become. September/October 2012

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Creativity, curiosity, compassion, and, above all, strong business discipline. ›

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? I think this affected most career women of my generation. I used humor, and perseverance, to rise above it and achieve my goals.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I try to blend work, home, and fun so I do a little of each every day, taking care of myself so I have energy to take care of others. This means eating well, working out, getting enough rest, and doing things that feed my body and soul.


Minnetonka, Minnesota WEBSITE:

www.unitedhealthgroup. com BUSINESS:

Health and healthcare REVENUES: $102 billion EMPLOYEES: 99,000 TITLE: Vice President, Social Responsibility; President, United Health Foundation EDUCATION:

BA, University of Iowa; MA, University of Minnesota FIRST JOB:

Creating and selling a handwritten neighborhood newspaper, door-to-door MY PHILOSOPHY: “Live your

life with passion and purpose, and trust yourself.” FAMILY: My wonderful husband,

Gordon, and our puppy TJ



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Capital One Bank

Saint Juste

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Leadership, dynamism, energy, strong values, and a commitment to the team ›

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My father is my inspiration. He owned and operated a business in Haiti. While he is not an educator by trade, he has taught me a lot about business, people, and leadership.

› What advice would you give younger women about their education? Never stop learning. If you think an education is expensive, try paying the cost of not having one.


OBEL AND PULITZER PRIZE-WINNING NOVELIST TONI MORRISON STATES OF A CHARACTER IN ONE OF HER MOST ACCLAIMED BOOKS: “BRYN MAWR HAD DONE WHAT A FOUR-YEAR DOSE OF LIBERAL EDUCATION WAS DESIGNED TO DO: UNFIT HER FOR EIGHTY PERCENT OF THE USEFUL WORK OF THE WORLD.” This, in essence, states what I believe, that there is a difference between “going to college” and “getting a college education.” I was 18 when my family emigrated from Haiti to the Washington, D.C. area in 1987. My father did not have a clear understanding of the college admission process, nor did he have the means to send me to college. So, fortuitously I attended Northern Virginia Community College and later transferred to George Mason University. I did not have the luxury of “going away to college” because I had to work and take care of myself. By the time I graduated from GMU, I had no debt and also managed to get accepted in a management training program at a local bank. As the mother of a college student who will graduate in four years, I realize that the majority of college expenses cover room and board, and the cost of tuition is only a fraction of the overall tab. Yet, my daughter is learning to be independent, selfsufficient, to collaborate with a roommate and all of the important things learned by “going to college.” The deeper questions I ponder frequently include thoughts about how much is she learning to think critically, study deeply, and question broadly. I am a firm believer in higher education and think that everyone should strive to further their formal learning through the college or university system. What I learned in college provided the foundation to think critically and strategically, which is a necessity in my line of business. Technology affords us the opportunity to take online courses. Many companies offer tuition reimbursement. Community colleges offer flexible hours and are less expensive. The benefits certainly outweigh the cost, especially if students are wise about their choices. One of my proudest and most memorable moments was the day I graduated from college. I continue to reap the benefits of that accomplishment and it inspires me to stay on this lifelong journey of learning. A college education gave me the freedom and courage to think, reason, and remember to ask why or at least why not.

“The benefits certainly outweigh the cost, especially if students are WISE about their choices.” 202


September/October 2012


McLean, Virginia WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Banking and financial services REVENUES: $16.28 billion EMPLOYEES: 34,200 TITLE: Senior Vice President, Business Banking - Virginia Market Executive EDUCATION:

BA, George Mason University; Graduate degree, University of Virginia Retail Banking Management FIRST JOB: Hecht's MY PHILOSOPHY: Live

meaningfully, laugh joyously, and love unconditionally! FAMILY: My husband, my

two daughters Joelle and Jessica, and the two sons my marriage has brought me, Jalil and Jelani

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Charan J.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges



S A MOTHER OF TWO YOUNG SONS, EDUCATION IS ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUES MY HUSBAND AND I FOCUS ON FOR OUR FAMILY. We actively encourage our sons to participate in a variety of STEM activities, including an after-school club called Math Olympiad. What I recently witnessed firsthand in their Math Olympiad club was a dramatic replay of what I saw myself as a child and what appears to still be happening decades later in classrooms across the nation. Less than one-quarter of their club is girls and the “superstars” seem to be predominantly boys. Our solution: Next year, I will coteach the club and hope to raise these numbers by showing the girls how to love math and helping them build confidence and believe they too belong in the class and can be the “superstars.” When I look at my own life, my mother was the first woman from her village in India to obtain a college degree in science and went on to become one of the first female chemistry college professors in her home state. I was born into a world where women were supposed to excel at science and math, and I always knew that I belonged in that world and was confident I would succeed. When it was time for me to choose an undergraduate college major, it was natural for me to choose chemical engineering. Conveying that sense of belonging and conviction of success are critical elements to encouraging young girls to enter into STEM fields. One key change I would like to see is a recasting of our educational content for young girls on STEM subjects to be more oriented towards girls’ interests. A good example of this is the computer program ALICE, developed at Carnegie Mellon, which teaches students visually-oriented programming by allowing them to manipulate and control characters and learn the basics of programming through creating stories for their characters, as opposed to simply creating lines of code. Studies by the National Science Foundation have shown that ALICE improves retention and performance particularly by women at the college level. The advancement of women in STEM fields is both a women’s issue and a national priority. Women becoming equally represented in STEM fields could dramatically increase the nation’s declining representation in these areas. I believe this change starts early—for example, changing the composition of clubs like my sons’ to comprise an equal number of girls and boys and convey the sense to young girls that STEM subjects are a natural place for girls to succeed. By making these small changes now, I hope that we will see greater numbers of women succeeding in STEM fields in the future. September/October 2012

› What does it take to succeed in your position? Intelligence and an ability to bring people together to reach agreement on difficult issues. ›

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? In my prior career as an engineer, I was frequently surrounded only by men and through a variety of direct and indirect suggestions often had the sense that I would have a very hard time making it to the top of any corporate ladder. For the most part, I ignored the differences and worked on being the smartest person in the room.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? With a smile and lots of support from my husband, nanny and family. I know when I need to be home and when I need to be at work.




2,764 TITLE:


BS, UC Berkeley; JD, The Georgetown University Law Center FIRST JOB:

Lab assistant at Chevron Chemical Company MY PHILOSOPHY:

To be the best at everything I do and empower others to do the same. FAMILY:

Husband Jaspreet and sons Rajan and Amar



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Elissa Ellis

Forté Foundation



Austin, Texas WEBSITE:

“Meaningful CHANGE starts with education,



which leads to self-empowerment.”


HILE IT’S TRUE THAT WOMEN ARE ACHIEVING AT A SUPERIOR RATE TO MEN IN MANY AREAS OF UNDERGRADUATE AND GRADUATE EDUCATION, THEY LAG FAR BEHIND IN OBTAINING MBAS. Historically, only a third of MBA graduates are women. At the same time, by some estimates, 60 percent of today’s business leaders have an MBA, and 42 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs have MBAs. However, according to a Catalyst study, among women, who comprise nearly 50 percent of the workforce, only 14 percent become executive officers and less than 4 percent advance to CEO. So it’s not surprising that women are not proportionally represented in leadership roles. There is good news. When women assume leadership roles, companies benefit. A Catalyst study showed companies with a higher representation of women in senior leadership make better decisions and have better returns, risk management, and corporate governance. Also, there is significant proof that an MBA leads to enhanced career opportunities for women, with pay, expectations, confidence, and mentors. On average, women earn 77 cents on the dollar; for women MBAs that number increases to an average of 85 cents. I believe that women’s access to an MBA is a critical missing link in ensuring women advance in business and assume leadership roles. So, influencing women’s perceptions about business careers—that they can be flexible, philosophically rewarding, and aligned with the principled, multi-faceted life women seek—is critical. I believe passionately in the power of education and want to inform women on all of their options pertaining to business, empowering them to make an informed personal decision. Women need role models in the highest ranks of business leadership. Therefore, Forté has become a key U.S. member of an initiative being led by the European Commission to get more women on corporate boards and to provide corporations with better access to board-ready women. Forté will leverage its unique position in the U.S. as the only organization that connects the top business schools around the topic of women in business to expand this effort to U.S. business schools. We hope the stories of these women and their peers provide inspiration, even from a distance. Meaningful change starts with education, which leads to self-empowerment. The resources and opportunities for women to advance professionally are here. It’s time to act deliberately and capitalize on them.



September/October 2012


$1.35 million EMPLOYEES:


Executive Director EDUCATION:

BA, MBA, Texas A&M University FIRST JOB:

Assistant Buyer at Neiman Marcus in couture handbags MY PHILOSOPHY:

Work hard, get along, take a risk and try again. FAMILY: Married with

one-year-old daughter

What does it take to succeed in your position? When I joined Forté eight years ago, I was the first full-time employee. This meant I was basically an entrepreneur and a nonprofit leader at the same time. I had to build the organization from scratch: raise operating funds, set up the organizational infrastructure, hire people, and set priorities. The first years took good old fashioned hard work and determination. But I couldn’t focus solely on the internal workings of the organization. I also had to build relationships with business schools, corporations, and other nonprofits working in the diversity space. They provided me with insight on strategic direction, support both fiscally and operationally, and opportunities to build an organization that would match up with their goals and objectives.

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Booz Allen Hamilton

Santa-Coloma Rohls


FTER GRADUATING FROM COLLEGE, MY SISTER AND I AGREED TO TRY TO MAKE IT IN NYC. I thought I would return to school in a year, but I joined a firm that challenged me and didn’t look back. I realized going to school wasn’t the only way to feed my voracious appetite for learning; I could also satisfy that on the job, working with intelligent people who pushed me to stretch and grow. When I took my first job, my uncle, a banking executive, advised: “Keep your mouth closed and learn.” After I earned my stripes, he explained, people would invest in me. As someone who’d always enjoyed taking the lead in conversations, that surprised me. But my uncle convinced me that on-the-job learning was different than school. Actually, it was even more exciting, because I never knew where a particular project or interaction would lead—and what “windmill” HEADQUARTERS: might be around the corner. McLean, Virginia I’ve been blessed with WEBSITE: incredible mentors. One pointed out that women focus on comBUSINESS: Management and petence. Men are more technology consulting likely to network and understand the politics REVENUES:

of any situation. Furthermore, men ask for what they want in terms of their careers and salaries, while women believe their good work will automatically be rewarded. Too many young women who were confident and successful in school become hesitant on the job. They think their work should speak for itself. Unfortunately, companies don’t behave like academia: An outstanding paper will garner an A, but a superbly executed project alone probably won’t result in a promotion or a raise. Women must learn to advocate for themselves—and build strong relationships with others who will advocate for them. Women leaders are critical to organizations’ success. Booz Allen has developed leadership courses to help women build their presence, understand expectations, and evaluate cultural, political, and societal norms. Most importantly, these women recognize—just as my uncle taught me—when to learn, and when to lead. To close the disparity between women and men in executive ranks, colleges and universities would do well to follow Booz Allen’s lead and encourage female students to take leadership courses tailored specifically for them. As women, we have come too far to believe we need to act like men in order to be successful. We bring something unique to the table, and we should seize the leadership opportunities available to us.

$5.86 billion EMPLOYEES: 25,000 TITLE: Principal EDUCATION:

BS, University of Florida FIRST JOB:

Consultant with Andersen Consulting MY PHILOSOPHY:

“Never stop tilting at windmills.” FAMILY:

My husband Jim, son Jimmy, daughter Gabrielle, and a large extended family

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My high school calculus teacher recognized my math abilities and pushed me to excel.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/ home responsibilities? The key to success is picking the right partner. My husband is creative and flexible in redefining traditional family roles. My parents and my extended family also provide outstanding support.

What advice would you give younger women about their education? Education is key to having choices. More education broadens your perspective and leads to more opportunities. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Federal Express India Pvt. Ltd.


How has your education affected your career? An in-built desire to apply what I have learnt, to real life—that’s where education has affected my career the most. It has propelled me to think for myself and has helped me give free rein to talents that have been unique to me. Education gave direction to my thoughts and tapped into my potential to achieve success. It has infused in me the value of self-belief and confidence. Effective and healthy rapports that I have shared with my teachers/ educators at different levels have helped me reinforce my interpersonal skills, one of the most important weaves of corporate and social fabric. I have been exposed to acumen of different areas of specialization in educational streams such as financial accounting, labor laws, and business management which have helped me amass the necessary skill set to realize my goals.


HE WORLD OVER, WOMEN ARE AN INTEGRAL PART OF THE FAMILY, SOCIETY, AND NOW EVEN THE CORPORATE ARENA. Opportunities for the educated woman are manifold, multi-dimensional, and promising. The hand that once only rocked the cradle now indeed rules the world! Women’s right to education spread with the paradigm shift from the kitchen to the classroom. Being fortunate to have various academic degrees such as bachelor’s, master’s, and beyond helped me realize my strength and capabilities, resulting in excellence and success at the corporate level. Likewise, women in many parts across the globe are motivated to empower themselves and engrave their footprints in the academic and corporate terrain. It gives me a great sense of pride to state that a developed India has a great number of educated women who are creating a niche for themselves in corporate excellence. Yet there is still the challenge of changing the beliefs in various sections of rural societies that a woman is born to cook and breed. Efforts to attain gender parity is the first crucial step to achieving improvements in female global education, while paying close attention to the social, cultural, and economic hurdles along the way. Another essential requirement is a globally widespread awareness, which can be achieved by changing the cultural outlook of education. There is a need to impose a common worldwide nationality and promote cohesive universal forces towards positive multiculturalism and shared values. Establishing common ground with local women, influencing their minds on the benefits of a good education, and transforming their belief that they do not have to give up their careers to be successful homemakers is important. Making basic education a directive, creating a wide network of schools, and using social media and women’s social networks in particular are important steps. Corporate leadership in tandem with statutory bodies and NGOs should manage and encourage community-based initiatives advancing female education. An egalitarian approach should permeate the mindset of women who believe in secondary status. Through a socially well-established framework, women must know their rights to reap the many benefits education can bring in its wake.

“Opportunities for the educated woman are

manifold, multi-dimensional, and PROMISING.” 206


September/October 2012


Memphis, Tennessee WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Express transportation EMPLOYEES: 7,500 TITLE:

Managing Director – Human Resources, India EDUCATION: BCom, LLB,

Bombay University, India; MBA, Institute for Technology & Management, India FIRST JOB: The World Trade

Center in 1989 MY PHILOSOPHY:

I have learnt that resilience and perseverance wins, no matter what. Even after setbacks! I see life as opportunity-laden and I know I am ready to act on it. FAMILY:

Husband, daughter, and son

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Kimberly C.

Sandia National Laboratories


› What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Technical courses that provide a strong foundation, and communications courses that will strengthen public speaking and writing abilities. › Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My high school algebra teacher. She made me feel good about my aptitude and pushed me at the same time. ›

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Only one small instance where I was not considered for a promotion because of a fear that I would quit to start a family. I felt sorry for my manager that his thinking was so narrow and decided to change managers, which was a pivotal turning point for me.


THINK THERE IS A SHORTAGE OF WOMEN IN STEM PROFESSIONS, RESULTING FROM NOT ENOUGH EMPHASIS IN EARLY EDUCATION, INSUFFICIENT SUPPORT DURING DIFFICULT YEARS, AND THE STEREOTYPING OF WOMEN IN STEM. I feel math and science should be fun to learn in elementary school. Hands-on projects should be leveraged to a greater degree, emphasizing relevance. Parents need to be supportive and encouraging in the early years of development to build a strong foundation. My dad encouraged me to do well in math and it paid off. I think if grades and test scores are low in math and science, parents should help or acquire tutoring in the spirit of encouragement, not punishment. Make it enjoyable to learn. I remember how challenging adolescence was. Popularity and peer pressure are prominent at that time. For girls in particular, being the smartest student in math and science is not always considered “cool.” I feel it is critical for girls to get more encouragement at home and at school to develop their interest in STEM. Being polite should not be sacrificed at the expense of achievement. STEM professionals should be welcomed into the schools to talk about what they do, how rewarding their work is, and how teamwork plays a role in succeeding. Mentors should be a requirement at the college level. When courses get dry and difficult, it is too easy to change majors and pursue a different path. A mentor can listen to the student’s thinking and provide guidance and encouragement to “stick with it.” This could result in having more women in STEM professions. Early careers for some women include marriage and raising a family. Priorities shift and a woman’s career could be slowed down or put on hold. Women need to stay engaged and find support externally and from their employers. Today, the playing field is shifting to where more men are taking on the responsibility for home and family. This shift needs to be supported and recognized by society. I know many women in STEM who are bright, talented, and glamorous. Their stories are remarkable. More stories need to be told. Television and movies can more prominently portray the exciting and rewarding careers women have in STEM professions. When there were popular doctor and lawyer shows on television, there were more students eager to pursue those fields. We need the same for STEM. September/October 2012


Albuquerque, New Mexico WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

National security laboratory REVENUES:

$2.42 billion EMPLOYEES:

11,118 TITLE:

Deputy Laboratories Director and Executive Vice President for Mission Support EDUCATION:

BS, Robert Morris University; MS, University of Massachusetts-Lowell FIRST JOB:

Systems Analyst MY PHILOSOPHY:

One person can make a difference. FAMILY: Married



You are a leader. You dare to lead when others follow. You make a true difference in the lives of those you touch. You light the way by your shining example. For your steady guidance, we salute you.

Congratulations to Erin Selleck, Senior Executive Vice President and Treasurer, for being named to Diversity Journal’s list of “Women Worth Watching.” We salute you, Erin, and all of the honorees.

©2012 Union Bank, N.A.

Company and Executive 2013 AWARD WINNERS

® All Things Diversity & Inclusion Erin Selleck, Union Bank, N.A. • Jennifer Schoenhofer, Axis Technologies LLC • Gail L. Smith, MetroPlus Health Plan • Martha Soehren, Comcast Corporation • Jennifer E. Smith, SAIC Pauline C. Scalvino, Vanguard • Beatriz Munoz-Shock, Gamestop Corp. • Linda Snow-Solum, Rockwell Collins • Darcee Scavone, Ryder System, Inc. Cheryl Scarboro, Simpson Thatcher & Bartlett LLP • Yedwa Simelane, AngloGold Ashanti Limited • Wendy Shen, FLOMO/Nygala Corp. • Cheryl Spruill, Prudential Financial, Inc.




September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner

Pauline C.


Scalvino “Great teachers continue to play an

important ROLE in the lives of young people.” › What does it take to succeed in your position? Being viewed as a trusted advisor and partner to the businesses I support. ›

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I’ve learned that “balance” isn’t possible all the time. Depending on what’s going on, sometimes home responsibilities take precedence and other times work will. What’s important is making sure over the long term that you feel good about both.

› What advice would you give younger women about their education? Education is more than preparation for a job. Take full advantage of the opportunities to broaden your knowledge and be exposed to new ideas.


Malvern, Pennsylvania WEBSITE: BUSINESS:

Financial services EMPLOYEES:

13,000 TITLE:

Principal and Chief Compliance Officer EDUCATION:

BS, LaSalle University; JD, Harvard Law School FIRST JOB:

Litigation Associate, Stradley Ronon MY PHILOSOPHY:

Success isn’t measured by title or possessions, but rather by the impact we have on the lives of others. FAMILY: Mother, aunt, sister,

brother-in-law, two nieces, and one nephew



HROUGHOUT MY LIFE, I HAVE BEEN BLESSED TO BE EXPOSED TO SOME GREAT TEACHERS. I recall with particular fondness and gratitude three high school teachers in particular who made a tremendous impact on me. Growing up, I was very shy. I was a very good student but preferred to stay in the background. In grade school, I rarely spoke up in class. I spent my free time with my nose buried in a book. My aspirations were limited. Marie Gallagher, Marianne Burpulis, and Joe Sanquilli helped to change all that. They didn’t just teach me English, Italian, and History. They drew me out of my shell and provided me with opportunities to grow. They introduced me to other cultures, a love of travel, and the importance of service. They pushed me to share my opinions and thoughts, convincing me that others might want to hear what I had to say. They saw potential in me that I didn’t know even existed. Because of their support and encouragement, my confidence increased. I began to believe that I might have more to offer. I became more vocal. I got involved in many extracurricular activities, frequently in leadership positions. After graduating from LaSalle University, I continued on to Harvard Law School. Such a path would have been unimaginable for a young woman who was the first in her family to attend college. Had it not been for these committed educators, I am not sure that I would have ever become a trial lawyer or had the fantastic roles that I’ve held at Vanguard. Great teachers continue to play an important role in the lives of young people. I am inspired by my sister, Frances Daly, who teaches at a charter school in Philadelphia. She does many of the same things that my teachers did for me so many years ago: she encourages young women and men to find their voices in order to make a difference; sets out high expectations for them; and believes in them so that they too can believe in themselves. I thank the teachers who had such an impact on my life. I also am grateful to today’s teachers who, like my sister, are dedicated to making a difference in the lives of the young people who will be the leaders of tomorrow.


September/October 2012

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner





1,600 TITLE:

Litigation Partner EDUCATION:

BA, University of Alabama in Huntsville; JD, Duke University School of Law FIRST JOB:

When I was in high school, I made pizzas at ShowBiz Pizza for the summer. This experience motivated me to stay in school. FAMILY:

My husband and I live in Washington, D.C. with our nine-year-old son.

› What college courses do you suggest for aspiring leaders? Writing is very important, as are courses that teach you critical thinking and use logic to hone your analytical skills. I think it’s important to have a strong liberal arts foundation as well as knowledge of how businesses work. Students should combine their academics with practical business. ›

Has discrimination affected you as a woman in the workplace? If so, how did you deal with it? Yes; Anytime you’re a woman or minority you feel as though you have something extra to prove. You have to make the extra effort so that people really see what you have to offer. Also your network may not be as expansive so you have to make an effort to constantly grow and maintain your contacts.

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP

Scarboro “In today’s economy, a college education is MORE VALUABLE than ever before. ”


Y FATHER WAS AN OFFICER IN THE MILITARY, SERVING IN VIETNAM AND A WIDE RANGE OF PLACES IN THE UNITED STATES AND ABROAD. At various points in my childhood I called Texas, California, Connecticut, Japan, Alabama, and North Dakota home. Different curricula, teaching styles, and cultures were at the core of my formative education. No matter where I was in the world, however, it was clear that an advanced education helped people reach their full potential. Tuition costs are rising, but earning a college degree has never been more important. College provides students with opportunities to explore their career choices, obtain critical skills that can be applied to many facets of their lives, and become exposed to new situations and experiences. To be competitive on a global basis, we need to educate our students and provide them with tools they need to compete. For those students entering certain fields, college opens doors, allowing them to earn more over the course of their lifetime and achieve advancement. In today’s tough job market, a college degree will still provide a critical advantage. More importantly, a rich academic experience will help students prepare for life. This country offers an incredible number of choices, including military academies, large state universities, and tiny liberal arts colleges. Students can choose to study in Manhattan or the heart of the Midwest. Although the choices can be staggering, they are exciting as well. College is also a time to learn rich life lessons. During college, I did an internship with the general counsel for the university, served as a summer fellow at Rutgers University, and spent a summer studying Spanish language and art in Madrid. These experiences were a valuable addition to the standard curriculum, and they were a lot of fun. The lessons you learn outside the classroom can help you hone skills, make important friendships, and learn about yourself and the world. In today’s economy, a college education is more valuable than ever before. Beyond the degree itself, students with a strong educational foundation will be in a better position to compete for jobs and be successful in those positions over the course of their careers. Most of us make important financial decisions throughout our adulthood. If we are fortunate, we buy homes, cars, stocks, and bonds. It may sound trite, but there are few investments that compare to investing in your own education. September/October 2012



Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Ryder System, Inc.



HEN I STARTED THINKING ABOUT WHY EDUCATION IS SO IMPORTANT, I REFLECTED ABOUT TEACHERS I WAS FOND OF, COURSES THAT ENERGIZED ME, MEMORABLE EXPERIENCES, AND THE MANY FRIENDS I MET ALONG THE WAY. Education was the cornerstone of my life: where my passion and talents surfaced, I was challenged yet nurtured and encouraged, and my dreams became a reality. I would not be where and who I am today without an education. The investment of time and money continues to be far exceeded by the return. Going to college was a given for me. My father drilled it into my head from the time I was in kindergarten. College offered a fouryear bridge into adulthood. It was my practice game before the playoffs, where I developed; learned to form opinions and viewpoints and how to appropriately express them; and gained a perspective on life and knowledge of the world around me. College exposes one to a large group of individuals who come from different backgrounds with unique experiences. This gave me the gift of diversity of thought and tools from individuals who did not think the same way I did. These interactions with others helped me broaden my thinking and shape my perspective. My college experience was extremely impactful and it taught me to persevere (it was self-funded), built confidence in my decision-making ability, taught me to accept my successes and failures, and most importantly, made me proud of the things I’d been able to accomplish in my life. In today’s competitive world, having a college degree is often times required for an entry ticket to the interview process. In fact, it is becoming increasingly important to have an advanced degree or other certification to give you an edge, at least on paper, given the huge pool of qualified candidates you will most likely be up against. The importance of college has been recognized on a global basis, and as a result, United States graduates now frequently compete with a global pool of qualified candidates. The job market continues to be challenging, so it is critical for graduates to build a strong network of individuals who can guide them through the job hunting process or help open doors along the way. Obtaining a college degree continues to be worth the investment of time and money as it opens doors to better career opportunities and growth, and equips you with the lifelong tools critical to realizing your personal definition of success.



September/October 2012

What does it take to succeed in your position? My success is entirely dependent upon my team; therefore, I spend the majority of my time communicating goals and objectives, ensuring we have a common definition of success, as well as coaching and developing their talents.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? It is important to know when it is the right time personally to pursue new or more challenging career opportunities. Understanding what is important to you and how to adjust will help you to be more resilient when facing demands in all areas of your life.



Transportation, logistics and supply chain management REVENUES: $6.1 billion EMPLOYEES: 27,500 TITLE: Vice President & CFO, Supply Chain Solutions EDUCATION:

BS, Oakland University; MBA, Northwood University FIRST JOB:

Waitress at a health club MY PHILOSOPHY: Treat every

place of employment as if it were your name on the front door. FAMILY:

Husband, Craig; son, Sam; daughter, Haley

Company and Executive Women Worth Watching ® 2013 Award Winner


Axis Teknologies LLC


“I had the drive, the passion to make something out of my LIFE—that has to come from within.” ›

What does it take to succeed in your position? Never give up. Never forget where you came from. Have humility. Nurture and have compassion for the people who depend on you for their livelihood, and never forget that they are the foundation of your success.

Is there an educator who had a profound impact on your career and/or life? If so, what did they do to motivate you? My first psychology teacher told me to celebrate life and don’t lose my passion through the inevitable ups and downs I will experience along the way. His passion for life motivated me. He taught me that every day is a gift that should be embraced.

How do you balance career and lifestyle/home responsibilities? I put a support system in place that allows me to capture as much personal time as possible from my intense work schedule so that I can enjoy learning to fly as a private pilot, hockey games, and the pleasure of my family and grandchildren.


Sandy Springs, Georgia WEBSITE: BUSINESS: Telecom wireless engineering REVENUES: $14 million EMPLOYEES: 104 TITLE: Founder & CEO EDUCATION: MBA, Kennesaw

State University FIRST JOB: Pizza Hut manager MY PHILOSOPHY: Taste life

with vigor and passion, guided by integrity and compassion, while striving for excellence. Anything can be accomplished with persistence and the power of knowledge. And every day make a positive difference in every life you touch. FAMILY: Daughter Jillian, son Christopher, grandchildren


DUCATION WAS THE MAGIC THAT TRANSFORMED MY LIFE FROM A SINGLE MOTHER ON WELFARE TO MY LIFE TODAY AS THE OWNER OF A MULTI-MILLION DOLLAR COMPANY. I had the drive, the passion to make something out of my life—that has to come from within. But it was my education that showed me the direction and gave me the tools to make it happen. The thirst for knowledge, the search to find a better way, to learn from others through their books or seminars or magazine articles—for me, it is a lifelong quest. So often the lessons I learned from the experiences of others, shared through their writings or lectures, have opened up entirely new worlds of thought that I might never have figured out on my own if I had depended solely on my personal, first-hand experiences. I believe the pursuit of knowledge not only gives you a competitive advantage in life and in business, but also keeps you alive and vibrant. As long as you continually strive to learn more or how to do things better, you never become old or obsolete. You only become a more unique and valuable vintage. That being said, I found that my formal college education provided me with a breadth and depth of knowledge that I would not have achieved on my own. There were mandatory courses on the curricula for both my college degrees that I never would have personally chosen. I thought I was being tortured having to take them— writing, sociology—if it wasn’t math or science I just wasn’t interested. But I would have missed out on so much, my view of the world would have been so much narrower, if I hadn’t taken those courses. In fact, I’m sure I would not have been able to achieve the success I’ve had in business without them. Another value lesson I learned through my college education, that was totally unexpected, was the discipline of persisting toward my goal even when there were things I didn’t want to do. Cramming at 3 a.m. for a final or to put the final touches on that paper due the next day is not that different from the discipline I often need to persist at achieving my business goals. So my message to every young woman is: Education is real magic. Thrive on a life full of new and wondrous knowledge! September/October 2012