Speakers — 2018
Learn from the Experts
This year’s lineup features industry disrupters, seasoned entrepreneurs, and the best and brightest business talent. New speakers are added weekly!
Chairman and CEOPepsiCo
Chairman and CEO
CEOPepsiCo, Latin America and Europe Sub-Saharan Africa
PepsiCo, Latin America and Europe Sub-Saharan Africa
Laxman Narasimhan is the chief executive officer of PepsiCo Latin America and Europe Sub-Saharan Africa. PepsiCo is a global food and beverage leader with net revenues of approximately $63 billion in 2016, and a product portfolio that includes 22 brands that generate more than $1 billion each in estimated annual retail sales.
PepsiCo’s main businesses – Quaker, Tropicana, Gatorade, Frito-Lay and Pepsi-Cola – make hundreds of enjoyable foods and beverages that are loved throughout the world.
Laxman assumed the position in September 2017. He leads PepsiCo’s food and beverage business across Latin America and Europe Sub-Saharan Africa and reports to PepsiCo Chairman and CEO, Indra Nooyi. He previously served as the CEO of PepsiCo Latin America and prior to that served as the senior vice president and CFO of PepsiCo Americas Foods based in Purchase, New York, which covered Frito-Lay North America, Quaker North America and PepsiCo’s Latin America Foods.
Prior to PepsiCo, Laxman was a director and location manager of McKinsey’s New Delhi Office. He worked with McKinsey for 19 years around the world, including rotations in Cleveland, Tokyo, Toronto, San Francisco and New Delhi. He had responsibility for consumer-facing industries in India, co-led the Global Consumer and Shopper Insights Practice and led McKinsey’s research on the emerging market consumer. He has worked across multiple industries, including consumer, retail, energy, manufacturing, technology and healthcare. Previously, Laxman co-led the Global Retail Knowledge Council of McKinsey’s Retail Practice. In addition to client service and research, Laxman has led assignments in the public sector, working on important policy issues, particularly in education and skill building.
Laxman is a Trustee of the Brookings Institution and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the College of Engineering, University of Pune, India. He has an MA in German and International Studies from The Lauder Institute at the University of Pennsylvania, where he won financial support from the Marcus Wallenberg Foundation from Sweden and the J.N.Tata Endowment in India. He has an MBA in Finance from The Wharton School at The University of Pennsylvania, where he was designated a Palmer Scholar.
He and his wife Vidhya have two children and are based in the New York area.
Global Head of Architecture and Engineering for Chief Technology Officer, Managing DirectorBank of America
Global Head of Architecture and Engineering for Chief Technology Officer, Managing Director
Bank of America
LINDA TAI leads the CTO Architecture and Engineering organization. In this role, she is responsible for all CTO end-to-end engineering, including information, data centers, automation, midrange, networks, and application services – including cloud applications. Linda also leads the Network Simplification transformational efforts.
Linda joined Bank of America in 2014 from Goldman Sachs where she spent more than 20 years defining and implementing application and infrastructure technology, while also interacting with the business and development communities. She was the global head of Services Engineering within Technology Infrastructure, focusing on foundational infrastructure solutions, applications, and support across Enterprise Systems Management, Critical Infrastructure, and Operations Stack Engineering.
Linda has a Master’s degree in Music from the New England Conservatory of Music, along with a Master’s degree in Mathematics and Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts.
Anchor / ReporterABC7/WJLA-TV
Anchor / Reporter
Nancy Chen is a seasoned journalist who joined the ABC7 and NewsChannel 8 team in April 2017.
Nancy Chen came to ABC7/WJLA-TV from WHDH in Boston, where she spent five years as the weekend anchor and weekday reporter. During her time there, she covered stories of national and global significance, including the Boston Marathon bombings and aftermath; the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio, Brazil; the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia; the 2013 EF5 Moore, Oklahoma tornado; the 2015 Super Bowl; a royal visit by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge; and a Medal of Honor ceremony at the White House.
Nancy joined WHDH from KSBY in San Luis Obispo/Santa Barbara, California, where she was a multimedia journalist. She's also worked as a web producer at KABC in Los Angeles and was involved in production for NBC Sports in Beijing during the 2008 Summer Olympics. As a print reporter, she wrote for the Tulsa World for three years.
Born in Texas, Nancy was raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where her parents still live. She graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in International Relations, attending as a Trustee Scholar on a full academic scholarship. She also studied Chinese at Peking University in Beijing.
Director of ProductAmazon
Director of Product
Named Women of Influence by Silicon Valley Business Journal, Jin Zhang is a technology executive with both Fortune 100 and startup experience in enterprise software. She delivered 8-figure revenue at IBM, led engineering at Apigee to its IPO, and is now Director of Product at Amazon. Jin speaks regularly at technical conference and owns multiple patents in analytics. She is passionate about promoting diversity in technical companies, and she spends her spare time teaching product management and innovation at Stanford University (CSP).
Executive DirectorAutomotive Information Sharing and Analysis Center (Auto-ISAC)
Automotive Information Sharing and Analysis Center (Auto-ISAC)
Faye Francy is the Executive Director for the Auto-ISAC. This non-profit organization was established in August of 2015 and serves the global automotive industry through the analysis and sharing of trusted and timely cyber threat information about existing or potential cyber-related threats and vulnerabilities for on-road vehicle electronics and associated networks. The ED is actively engaged with private-sector stakeholders, partners and government agencies to facilitate information sharing and strengthen the industry's capability and capacity to detect, prevent, respond to, and mitigate disruptions related to the connected vehicle and supporting infrastructure.
Vice President and Chief Procurement OfficerCaesars Entertainment
Vice President and Chief Procurement Officer
Mike Fath is currently a Vice President and the Chief Procurement Officer for Caesars Entertainment Corporation. Mike’s team is responsible for Sourcing, Purchasing Operations and Supply Management in goods and services acquired by Caesars casino and hospitality properties in North America.
Mike’s team of 350 people buy everything from food, beverage and hospitality products, to gaming equipment and supplies, to media, advertising, promotional products and print, to professional services, (including legal services), information technology, facilities, equipment maintenance services and construction.
Mike leads Caesars Entertainment’s commitment to the diverse communities where it does business by procuring goods, products and services from a diversified pool of suppliers, contractors and professional service providers, and working with small local businesses to help them grow.
Prior to Caesars, Mike served as SVP of Procurement at First Group America (FGA), the largest transport operator in North America, operating 50,000 school buses under the brand First Student as well as owning Greyhound. While at FGA, Mike led the integration of sourcing and supply chain operations after the 2007 acquisition of Laidlaw doubled the size of the North American business.
Before joining FGA, Mike was a consulting Partner with KPMG. Elected to the Partnership in 1994, he was a leader in the firm’s Supply Chain Consulting Practice in North America.
Mike has a Master of Business Administration, from Michigan State University and earned his undergraduate degree from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio.
Of great personal interest to Mike is his involvement in the Jude’s Ranch for Children, where he serves a Board Member. He is deeply dedicated to their mission of “Transforming the lives of abused and at-risk children, young adults and families by empowering them to create new chances, new choices and new hope in a caring community.”
Senior Vice President Strategic ProcurementCharter Communications
Senior Vice President Strategic Procurement
Michelle Hawkins is Senior Vice President of Procurement at Charter Communications and is located in Denver, Colorado. She joined Charter in June 2012 to develop and transform their Procurement organization. Michelle and her team provide Strategic Sourcing expertise aimed at bringing business value to functional areas across the enterprise. The organization also includes the centralized Purchasing and Contracts Administration functions and is responsible for Charter’s Supplier Diversity program.
Michelle's career began in the telecommunications industry. She spent 22 years at Motorola in various leadership positions in both Direct and Indirect Strategic Procurement. While at Motorola, she had global responsibility with team members in 16 different countries. Michelle also spent one year at Nokia Siemens Networks while she led the procurement integration after the acquisition of the former Motorola Networks business.
Michelle holds a bachelor's degree in Materials and Logistics Management from Michigan State University and a MBA from the University of Phoenix. She is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) from PMI and holds a Global Leadership Certificate from Thunderbird School of Global Management. In 2010, she was a Board Member of Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). Michelle also was an instructor for “Leadership in Supply Management” at DePaul University as part of their continuing education program in effort to prepare participants for ISM’s CPSM certification. Michelle is a 2016 BMLI Graduate, Class #33 and a member of WICT.
Vice President and Chief Procurement OfficerDuPont
Vice President and Chief Procurement Officer
Shelley Stewart, Jr. is Vice President and Chief Procurement Officer at DuPont, where he leads global procurement and logistics. His role is to improve efficiency and deliver cost savings across the enterprise. In January 2016, he assumed the responsibility for Facilities Services and Real Estate. Before joining DuPont, Shelley was Senior Vice President of Operational Excellence and Chief Procurement Officer at Tyco, where he led Procurement, Information Technology, Lean Six Sigma and Real Estate, and where he delivered $1B in cost savings in his first three years. Prior positions include SVP of Supply Chain at Invensys, VP of Supply Chain at Raytheon, and 18 years at United Technologies, where he led various senior level operations and supply chain roles.
Shelley is chair of the Board of Visitors at Howard University’s School of Business and is a member of Northeastern University’s Corporation. He is also a member of the Advisory Board of Drexel University Center for Corporate Governance. Shelley is a Fellow of the National Association of Corporate Directors.
Shelley served on the board of directors of Cleco Corporation, a Louisiana regulated utility, where he also served on the audit committee and was chair of the nominating and governance committee. He is also a former Vice Chair of the Board for the National Minority Supplier Development Council. As a former chair of the Institute for Supply Management, he has been consistently recognized as a leader within the supply chain profession. He has been identified as one of the 100 Most Powerful Executives in Corporate America by Black Enterprise, and recognized by Savoy. In 2013 he was named a Bartels Fellow by the University of New Haven. In 2011 Shelley was appointed by the Secretary of Commerce to serve on the U.S. Department of Commerce National Advisory Council on Minority Business. In October 2016, he received the Abe Venable Legacy Award for Lifetime Achievement by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency.
Shelley holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of New Haven and both a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree of Science in Criminal Justice from Northeastern University. He is co-author of Straight To The Bottom Line™: An Executive’s Roadmap to World Class Supply Management, (J.Ross Publishing).
Senior Manager, Supplier DiversityGeneral Motors
Reginald E. Humphrey
Senior Manager, Supplier Diversity
Reggie Humphrey is the Senior Manager of Supplier Diversity at General Motors and joined the team in July 2012. He is responsible for managing GM’s supplier diversity process of inclusion, which consists of over 300 certified diverse suppliers. Reggie began his career journey in 1995 as a Production Supervisor at the Moraine Assembly Center in Moraine, OH. In 1998, he relocated to the Detroit metro area and has since worked in several operational and planning roles within multiple organizations including; Order Fulfillment, Supply Chain, Global Purchasing, and Logistics.
In addition to Reggie’s core responsibilities, he serves as a voluntary board member for several organizations including the Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council, Canadian Aboriginal and Minority Supplier Council, and Chairman of the Great Lakes Women’s Business Council. Reggie also serves as the Advisory Board Chairman for the Tuck School Minority Business Executive Programs at Dartmouth College.
Reggie has been recognized as one of Women’s Enterprise USA’s 2018 Top 100 Leaders in Supplier Diversity, 2017 WBENC National Corporate Advocate of the Year, 2016 Emerging Leader from the Rainbow Push Coalition, 2015 NMSDC Minority Supplier Development Leader of the Year, 2015 GLWBC Corporate Champion of the Year, 2015 Global Community Service Award from the Ajamu Group and the 2015 MMSDC President’s Award. In addition, GM has recently received the following awards under his leadership:
- 2017 Corporation of the Year- Great Lakes Women’s Business Council (GLWBC)
- 2017 Corporation of the Year- National Business League
- 2017/16/15 NMSDC Corporation of the Year: Category Award for Supplier Development
- 2017/16 WBENC Top Corporation-Gold
- 2017/1615/14 “Best in Class -Excellence in Supplier Diversity” by GLWBC
- 2016 Corporation of the Year: MMSDC, MHCC, and APACC
Reggie holds a B.S. in Finance from Alabama A&M University and a M.S.A. from Central Michigan University.
Professor and Hochberg Fellow of Leadership DevelopmentGeorge Washington University School of Business
Professor and Hochberg Fellow of Leadership Development
George Washington University School of Business
James R. Bailey is Professor and Hochberg Fellow of Leadership Development at the George Washington University School of Business, and a Fellow in the Centre for Management Development, London Business School. He has taught at University of Michigan, New York University, IMD, and Helsinki School of Economics, Dr. Bailey is the recipient of many teaching distinctions, including four GWSB Outstanding Faculty Awards. In 2006 he was named one of the world’s top ten executive educators by the International Council for Executive Leadership Development. He has published over 50 academic papers and case studies, and is the author of five books, including the award-winning, best-selling Organizational and Managerial Wisdom and the forthcoming Lessons on Leadership. He has designed and delivered hundreds of executive programs for firms like Nestle, UBS, Conoco-Phillips, and Goldman Sachs, as well as several major law firms and US Congressmen. Dr. Bailey is a frequent keynote speaker who has appeared on broadcast programs for the BBC, CBS, NPR, and Fox News Channel, and whose work has been cited in such outlets as the Wall Street Journal, Fortune, Forbes, and Business 2.0. He is a frequent contributor to The Hill, Washington Post, Washington Business Journal, and Harvard Business Review. He is the past Editor-in-Chief of the Academy of Management Learning and Education, as well as the founder and Editor-in-Chief of the online magazine Lessons on Leadership and the author of the Psychology Today column, At the Helm. Professor Bailey has served as a dean, department chair, and program director during his 25-year academic career.
Global Director, Smart InfrastructureHatch, Ltd.
George D. Thomas
Global Director, Smart Infrastructure
George Thomas is a thought leader and adviser to public and private sector organizations in the Americas, Europe, Africa and Asia. With more than twenty years of experience, George has held a variety of sales, strategy and consulting roles. A dynamic leader and team builder, George has helped clients develop successful strategies and execute transformational projects in business operations, capital improvement, enterprise processes and applications, organizational change management and strategic planning.
George currently serves as Global Director, Smart Infrastructure, for Hatch Ltd. In this role, he leads Hatch's efforts in helping clients maximize value across all Infrastructure and Urban Solution domains.
George also founded New Urban Informatics, a boutique business advisory firm, providing expertise to some of the most innovative companies and governments focused on Public Sector Analytics and Smart Cities. He is based in Washington DC.
George previously served as Global Director of Strategy & Markets for IBM’s Government Industry vertical. In this role, he was responsible for the strategy and execution of new innovations and solutions to assist governments globally in delivering improved services to their citizens. From 2013 to 2014 he was the Director of Smarter Cities for IBM Greater China, based in Beijing, PRC; and from 2010 to 2012, he was the Global Director for Smarter Cities Sales Strategy & Execution. Prior roles have included US Sales Director responsible for IBM’s services portfolio in State & Local Government, Education & Public Healthcare segment and Partner responsible for IBM’s US SAP State, Local and Education Practice. George has successfully delivered several complex, mission-critical transformation consulting engagements in the public sector which include innovative and breakthrough projects in technology, process and people transformation. Prior to joining IBM in 2000, George held senior positions with the management, business consulting and engineering practices of PSINet; Metamor; and Mott MacDonald respectively. In these roles, he was involved in global multi-million dollar engagements covering complex implementations in finance, human resources, supply chain, reengineering, process improvement, and core engineering projects.
George is a recognized industry expert at the intersection of technology and business in areas such as cognitive computing, deep analytics, smarter cities, Blockchain, the API economy, internet of things, and cloud computing. George is a founding member of the Smarter Cities Council, a member of the US NIST Executive Committee for Global City Teams Challenge, a prior resident expert at the IBM Center for Cognitive Government, a Senior Advisor to the Virginia Center of Innovative Technology, leads the Transportation Segment for Governor’s Virginia Smart Communities initiative, and is a mentor, board member and coach to several start-ups and innovative companies. George is a proven thought leader and a regular speaker at conferences and events including at the C40 Mayor’s Conferences, TEDx, Chambers of Commerce, Harvard Club, American Institute of Architects, the World Bank and the United Nations.
George holds a Master’s Degree in Engineering and Management from the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.
Senior Vice President and Chief Information OfficerIngersoll Rand
Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer
Steve Hagood is senior vice president and chief information officer at Ingersoll Rand and a member of the company’s Enterprise Leadership Team.
Steve leads the company’s global information technology (IT) organization and is responsible for the development and execution of Ingersoll Rand’s information technology strategies, including enterprise technology infrastructure, information security, and business IT solutions.
Prior to joining Ingersoll Rand, Steve spent 19 years with the Goodrich Corporation, most recently as the company’s vice president and chief information officer. With more than 30 years of experience, he has held multiple executive and financial leadership roles in the aerospace and defense, manufacturing and service industries.
Steve currently chairs the Charlotte CIO Executive Summit and previously served as the chair of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce IT Summit. He is a past director and Board Chair of Apparo, a Charlotte-based nonprofit organization, and a prior director for the Charlotte Mecklenburg County Council of the Boy Scouts of America and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Technology Advisory Board.
Steve holds a Bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Texas at Austin and is a member of the Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. He was recognized by the Charlotte Business Journal as ‘CIO of the Year’ in 2014.
Vice President, Global Supplier DiversityJPMorgan Chase
Vice President, Global Supplier Diversity
Punita Patel is Vice President, Global Supplier Diversity at JPMorgan Chase where she directs the development and implementation of best practices and strategies for diversity in an international, inclusive supply chain. In this role, she facilitates strategic alliances with business leaders, suppliers, customers and community stakeholders, and is responsible for developing partnerships that promote the use of minority, women, veteran, disabled and LGBT owned businesses company-wide. Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Patel’s experience includes managing domestic and international operations in the financial, technology, service, and manufacturing sectors.
Senior Vice President Global ProcurementMarriott International
Senior Vice President Global Procurement
Stephane entered the hospitality industry in 1990 and has a degree in Hotel Business Administration. His career began with Holiday Inn and later he joined the Ramada/ Renaissance group to set up their purchasing department in Eschborn (Germany) covering EMEA. In 1997, Stephane was named Regional Director of Procurement for Continental Europe, overseeing Marriott’s procurement operations to drive margins optimization from contract programs and provide services and savings to our regional teams and owners. In 2002 Stephane was promoted to Vice President International Procurement, managing successfully procurement functions in London, Dubai, Shanghai, Sydney, Bangkok, Eschborn, Paris, Cap Town, Hong Kong and Mumbai. He was responsible for assisting our hotels to maximize buying leverage, providing support to ensure compliance and monitoring service levels of vendors.
As the leader of the Global Procurement Team, Stephane who is a 23-year veteran with Marriott, successfully led the team through the Starwood hotels acquisition, which added ,500 hotels to the 4,000 already supported by the team.
In 2017 Stephane was promoted to Senior Vice President and continues to develop opportunities by leading a team to manage and deploy global key procurement initiatives and strategies including an EProcurement tool which is scalable, environmentally responsible, increases synergies between domestic and international contacts and advances global supplier diversity.
PartnerMcKinsey & Company
McKinsey & Company
John is a partner in our Risk Practice, advising clients on a variety of topics related to risk and regulation, including third party risk management. He has extensive knowledge of regulation, the banking industry, monetary policy, and economics. Prior to joining McKinsey in 2012, John served as the acting Comptroller of the Currency from August 2010 until April 2012. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), a bureau of the US Treasury Department, supervises approximately 2,000 national banks and federal savings associations as well as 50 federal branches and agencies of foreign banks in the United States. From 2005 until 2010, John was the OCC’s Chief of Staff and Public Affairs. John publishes regularly on his topics of focus and speaks at forums around the globe.
Senior Vice President, IT Chief Financial Officer and Chief Procurement OfficerNationwide Insurance
Senior Vice President, IT Chief Financial Officer and Chief Procurement Officer
Angie Klett is senior vice president IT CFO and Chief Procurement Officer (CPO). As CFO, Angie is a strategic business partner to CIO Mike Keller, providing financial planning and reporting on the $1B+ IT budget. Since a great deal of technology spend is sourced externally from suppliers, there’s a tight link to Angie’s responsibilities as CPO where she leads $4B of strategic sourcing and procurement for Nationwide.
Previously, Angie served as Vice President CFO for P&C Personal Lines and Standard Commercial lines where she was responsible for developing the 5-year financial plan, forecasting and reporting for both agency and direct.
Angie began her career as an accountant in the financial services side of Nationwide. She held a number of roles in finance before jumping into the property and casualty business where she spent nearly half of her career in leadership positions across sales and service centers, marketing, and product management.
Angie holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Ohio Wesleyan University, a Chartered Financial Consultant designation and is a CPA. She currently serves as Treasurer and chair of the finance committee on the Berger Health System board in her local community of Circleville Ohio. Additionally, she and her husband own and operate Burr Oak Nursery on their 70 acres.
Senior Vice President, Chief Information Officer Prog & App ServicesNationwide Insurance
Guru (Guruprasad) Vasudeva
Senior Vice President, Chief Information Officer Prog & App Services
Guru Vasudeva is Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer (CIO) of Program & Application Services at Nationwide Mutual Insurance, a $27 billion revenue financial services and insurance company. In this role, Guru manages a shared services organization that provides program and project management, application development, and requirements and testing for the enterprise. He is also responsible for the delivery of large and complex programs, Lean and Agile transformation of application development and maintenance functions across Nationwide.
Prior to this role, Guru held several senior leadership positions at Nationwide including Enterprise Chief Technology Officer, Business Unit CIO, and Chief Architect.
Chief Operating OfficerNaranga
Chief Operating Officer
Faraz is a technology executive with over 20 years of expertise in managing software design and development, project management, client services and professional services. He currently serves as the Chief Operating Officer for Naranga and is responsible for the day to day operations and general management of the company. In this role Faraz has helped establish Naranga as a Premier Technology service provider in the Franchise Space.
Prior to Naranga, he worked for Velti (a multi-national leader in the mobile marketing space), and led project management, client relationship management, professional services management, client support management and delivery. Faraz also worked in IT Consulting and held various leadership roles, and in Online Marketing creating systems that built online user loyalty (notably for the Official NASCAR Membership Club).
Faraz has an MBA in International Business and a PMP certification.
Senior Vice President & Chief Procurement OfficerPepsiCo
Senior Vice President & Chief Procurement Officer
Brian joined PepsiCo in June of 2015 to lead the strategic sourcing and procurement agenda for PepsiCo’s Direct Procurement area and is accountable for $10 billion spend annually. His areas of responsibility include global rigid and flexible packaging, energy, sweeteners and print graphics and quality. He also has Procurement responsibility for the AMENA sector.
Brian joined PepsiCo from Mondelez/Kraft where he spent 20 years in roles of increasing responsibility. He had roles in commodities, direct materials, indirect materials & services, 3rd party manufacturing and strategy and has been based in both Chicago and Atlanta. He then moved to Singapore where he led Kraft Foods’ Asia Pacific Procurement organization. During those five years, he integrated the acquisitions of Danone biscuit and Cadbury with new geographies, organizations and product portfolio. Most recently he spent four years in Zurich where he was responsible for the global Chocolate Category Procurement organization.
Brian holds a BS in Economics from the University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign and an MS in Management from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.
Vice President, Supply Chain ManagementPG & E
Vice President, Supply Chain Management
PG & E
Gun S. Shim is Vice President of Supply Chain Management for Pacific Gas and Electric Company. He is responsible for PG&E's Supply Chain policies and standards, responsible for Strategic Sourcing, enhancing supplier relationships, materials and inventory management, logistics, Supplier Quality Assurance, and Logistics Emergency Response.
Shim has over 25 years of supply chain and procurement experience. Before joining PG&E in September 2009, he was the Vice President, Procurement with T-Mobile USA. Prior to this role, Shim spent over 17 years with SBC Communications, now AT&T, where he held various vice president positions within Shared Services and Supply Chain. At SBC, Shim was one of the leaders who led supply chain merger integrations which included some of the largest mergers at that time.
He was also a principle owner of GS and Company that provided project management and strategic sourcing solutions. As a principal, Shim specialized in raising venture capital for web-enabled buying portals and forming consortium buying groups targeted at specific categories.
Shim holds a bachelor's degree in political science. He serves on several boards that help advance supply chain principles and practices.
Chief Purchasing OfficerSchneider Electric
Chief Purchasing Officer
DK has 28 years of leadership experience in industrial/energy management, consumer product, technology, auto, and power equipment manufacturing environment with direct experience in engineering and supply chain including procurement (direct and indirect), logistics, supply-demand, inventory management, and operations.
DK is currently a Chief Purchasing Officer for the Schneider Electric with a global procurement responsibility of $15B spend. He has been with Schneider Electric since August 2014.
Prior to his current position at Schneider Electric, DK spent eight years at ConAgra Foods as a CPO and had the responsibility of enterprise procurement with $10B global spend. Prior to this, he spent three years at Motorola where he held the roles of senior executive in Procurement. He was the Vice President of Procurement for the Motorola’s Mobile Devices Group and had the responsibility of $12B Sourcing for the cell phone business. DK was also the Vice President with Motorola’s Global Procurement function with the responsibilities of Indirect Global Sourcing with $6.0B+ spend.
Before joining Motorola in 2003, DK spent 15 years with IBM Corp in many different leadership roles including product development, engineering, logistics, supply/demand, inventory mgmt, and Global Procurement. His last responsibilities at IBM included managing Global Services Procurement with significant responsibilities.
DK has a Master’s in Industrial Engineering, a BS in Mechanical Engineering and has been a registered Professional Engineer (PE). He has published many articles related to manufacturing and supply-chain in external and internal journals. He has been on the Advisory Board for Resin Technology, NMSDC (National Minority Supplier Development Council) and works closely with USPAACC.
Senior Vice President & Chief Procurement OfficerUS Bank
Senior Vice President & Chief Procurement Officer
Tom D. Lutz joined U.S. Bancorp as Senior Vice President and Chief Procurement Officer in April, 2008. He is responsible for the corporate procurement organization involved with strategic sourcing, vendor management, and supplier diversity. Since joining U.S. Bancorp nine years ago, Tom has focused on delivering significantly greater value across the enterprise through more effective internal alignment, improved vendor relationships, strategic talent management, and a shareholder-centric view of operating costs and business practices.
Tom has more than 30 years of experience in the areas of procurement, supply chain management, and information systems. Prior to joining U.S. Bank, Tom spent twenty years with General Mills in a variety of roles, and three years with Pulte Homes as National Vice President of Procurement.
Tom is a native of Minnesota, and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Business and Systems Analysis from Taylor University in Upland, Indiana.
Senior Director Global Office of Culture, Diversity & InclusionWalmart
Senior Director Global Office of Culture, Diversity & Inclusion
Donald Fan serves as a senior director of the Global Office of Culture, Diversity & Inclusion in Walmart Inc. In that role, Donald has been responsible for leading various functional areas, including strategy development, marketing & communications, analytics, business insights, program design & implementation, and stakeholder relations. Prior to it, Donald worked in Walmart Information System Division with technical and analytical positions.
Donald is also serving as a board director of Confucius Institute of the University of Central Arkansas and board director of the National Association of Asian American Professionals (NAAAP). He is also a member of Catalyst Expert Community, the Leadership Board of Diversity MBA Magazine, and the Business Intelligence Board of the Chief Learning Officer Magazine.
Donald taught college in China before coming to the United States for graduate studies.
National Business Development Executive, Small Business Development GroupWells Fargo
National Business Development Executive, Small Business Development Group
Bob Marshall is currently the National Business Development Executive with Wells Fargo Bank for the Small Business Development Group. He is responsible for leading a team of Business Development Leaders across the footprint that is charged with acquiring new customers with sales ranging from $2 - $5 million. Prior to his current role, Mr. Marshall has held several banking management positions including Area Business Banking Manager for Northern Virginia, Washington, D.C. and Maryland, Community Bank Executive for the Wholesale Banking Group (Wachovia Bank, NA), Corporate Retail Sales & Service Strategy Team Leader, and also Corporate Retail Bank Sales Manager. Mr. Marshall joined the bank as a Branch Manager in 1997.
Prior to joining Wachovia Bank, he held the roles of Franchise Manager, Assistant Branch Manager, and Commercial Auditor with ITT Commercial Finance. Mr. Marshall began his career in banking in the Management Development Program at Nat West Bank, NA.
Mr. Marshall graduated from Boston College Carroll School of Management with a Bachelor of Science degree, majoring in Finance and Human Resource Management. He also holds an Executive MBA degree from Queens University's McColl School of Business in Charlotte.
Mr. Marshall has been involved in a variety of activities in his community. His most current affiliations include:
- Livingstone College Board of Trustees
- Member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc.
- University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center Board of Advisors
- Greater Washington Urban League Board of Directors, Chairman Finance Committee
- DC Jazz Festival
- Leadership Greater Washington C/O 2017
- CALIBR C/O 2016
Recently, Mr. Marshall was recognized as one of the Washington Business Journal’s 2017 Minority Business Leaders and the featured speaker on the inaugural Executive Speakers Series of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund “Rules of the Road in Corporate America” webinar. In 2011 he was profiled in the Third Edition of “Who’s Who in Black Charlotte.” He was selected for his work, dedication, and commitment to the African American community.
Mr. Marshall’s travel includes fact-finding trips to Dubai and Abu Dhabi, UAE and Cairo, Egypt as well as to Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa.
Executive Vice President, Head of Enterprise Information TechnologyWells Fargo
Executive Vice President, Head of Enterprise Information Technology
Scott Dillon is head of Enterprise Information Technology at Wells Fargo and the company’s Chief Technology Officer, one of the country’s largest and most innovative information technology groups with more than 17,000 talented team members who help keep Wells Fargo at the forefront of America’s diversified financial services companies.
Under his leadership, technology team members set IT strategy, deliver systems software design and development, and provide Wells Fargo global customers ‘round-the-clock’ banking access through in-store, online, ATM, mobile device and telephone transactions. They serve customers directly through systems availability and security, as well as indirectly, through internal business partners who deliver a wide range of financial products and services.
During his nearly two decades with the company, Scott has held various executive positions, including global head of Technology Infrastructure Services, head of Enterprise Hosting Services, chief information officer for Wholesale, Trust and Investment Banking, and head of Payment Strategies – where he created and led the Strategic Alliances & Ventures groups.
Prior to joining Wells Fargo, Scott was a Partner at Deloitte Consulting holding various leadership positions in the Strategy and Financial Services practices while also acting as a Lead Client Services Partner for multiple top 10 financial services organizations.
Scott received a Bachelor of Science degree in Banking from the University of Minnesota Carlson School of Management.
Head of Ultimate Rewards & Loyalty Solutions Chase Card ServicesJPMorgan Chase
Lorraine Chow Hansen
Head of Ultimate Rewards & Loyalty Solutions Chase Card Services
Lorraine Chow Hansen joined JPMorgan Chase as General Manager of Ultimate Rewards & Loyalty Solutions. Her team provides 23 million consumers with the “ultimate in rewards” across Chase Freedom, Sapphire and Ink credit cards as well as providing loyalty platforms for Amazon, Disney and other iconic cobrand cards.
Previously, Lorraine was President of the $32 billion Global Snacks Group at PepsiCo. Lorraine also led Kraft’s $1.6 billion U.S. Coffee & Tea Division as Senior Vice President & General Manager.
Lorraine leverages the power of consumers, brands and breakthrough innovation. She oversaw marketing campaigns such as Lay’s “Lionel Messi,” Doritos’ “For the Bold” and Starbucks’ “It’s not just coffee. It’s Starbucks.” She has launched contemporary, differentiated new products such as Lay’s Deep Ridged, Crystal Light on the Go and Tassimo generating over $1 billion in incremental revenue.
Lorraine was awarded her Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from Princeton University and her MBA from Harvard Business School.
She is the 2007 recipient of the Organization of Chinese Americans Corporate Achievement Award, 2008 recipient of the YWCA Salute to Women and Racial Justice Outstanding Achievement in Business Award, 2012 recipient of the Advertising Age "Women to Watch” Award and 2017 recipient of the Girls Scouts Women of Distinction Award.
SVP Hilton Supply ManagementHilton
SVP Hilton Supply Management
Government & NGO Speakers
Director of Supplier DiversityAARP
Director of Supplier Diversity
Mrs. Kimberly Marcus is the Director of Supplier Diversity for AARP. Mrs. Marcus is responsible for redefining supplier diversity at AARP. The AARP supplier diversity program resides at the intersection of who we are, what we do, and how we do it. AARP’s supplier diversity program is directly linked to our mission and why we exist. AARP not only seeks to work with diverse suppliers, we also serve them by helping them grow their businesses and promoting them in the marketplace.
Mrs. Marcus comes to AARP with over 17 years of combined experience in both the corporate and non-profit worlds. Prior to AARP, Mrs. Marcus was a presidential appointee for the Department of Commerce. Mrs. Kimberly Marcus was appointed in July 2012 to serve as Associate Director for the Office of Legislative, Education & Intergovernmental Affairs (OLEIA) at the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA). In this capacity, she led all Agency efforts in the areas of communications, public affairs, external relationships, outreach, research, and policy development. She also oversaw the Agency’s relationships with elected officials, as well as its advocacy and outreach strategies. Mrs. Marcus focused primarily on stakeholder outreach, with an emphasis on global business development. Fortune 500 stakeholders, both domestic and international, were key to her outreach methodology.
One of her career highpoints before her appointment was when she was the National African American Outreach Director for the Democratic National Committee (DNC). In this high-profile role, Mrs. Marcus worked closely with the African American community to emphasize the importance of the African American vote.
Mrs. Marcus also worked for the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, serving as Executive Director of its Public Policy Institute’s Government Relations office. Mrs. Marcus advocated on behalf of urban communities and minorities by interacting with members of Congress, the Executive Branch, and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). She was responsible for the creation of public forums and the development of influential coalitions, as well as the publication of relevant policy analysis and research studies.
Mrs. Marcus considered her position as Director of Economic Development for the NAACP to be an exciting turning point in her career, as it gave her the chance to tackle issues of immediate relevance to equal opportunity for people of color. Mrs. Marcus is no stranger to the world of minority-owned business, as she owned and ran her own diversity consulting firm, KC Consulting. As the Principal Consultant for her firm, Mrs. Marcus expanded on the type of work she had done for the NAACP. She continued to advise client firms on diversity initiatives, and recommended implementation strategies.
At the outset of her career, Mrs. Marcus worked as a Senior Sales Executive at the Strategic Research Institute (SRI), where she spearheaded the organization’s successful launch of African American/Multicultural conferences and seminars. At Bank of America, she established a Living and Learning Center—a cutting-edge facility designed to help employees enhance skills related to both business and personal issues.
A native of Oakland, California, Mrs. Marcus holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Marketing from Clark Atlanta University. Mrs. Marcus is a recipient of the 40 Most Influential Young Professionals Under 40 In Washington Award by IMPACT and The Loop, Top 25 Women in Power Impacting Diversity Award by DiversityPlus Magazine and Women of Leadership and Power Award by MEA Magazine and serves on the Honorary Advisory Board of The National Veterans Opportunity Coalition, the Capital Region Minority Supplier Development Council Board, and the Women Presidents’ Educational Organization Board. Mrs. Marcus is happily married, with a twin son and daughter.
Acting Director – OSDBUDepartment of Agriculture (USDA)
Michelle E. Warren
Acting Director – OSDBU
Department of Agriculture (USDA)
In December 2015, Michelle Warren was appointed Deputy Director in the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization within the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Recently, she’s been serving as Acting Director. It is her responsibility to provide maximum opportunities for small businesses to participate in USDA contracting activities. Michelle hosts and participates in Small Business events all over the country with high level USDA officials.
Educating, and Supporting the Buyer and the Seller is OSDBU’s core value.
Michelle’s philosophy is, “Think about what you want to do, DO IT, then think about what you have done!”
Mrs. Warren is a graduate of Virginia State University located in Petersburg, VA with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Business and Economics. She currently resides in Manassas, Virginia with her husband, Rodney, their daughter, Jasmine and son Rodney Warren III.
President and CEOAssociated Builders and Contractors (ABC)
President and CEO
Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC)
Michael D. Bellaman was named president and CEO of Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) in 2011 after a 26-year career in the construction industry. He leads the association toward achieving four strategic goals: establishing ABC members as the world-class standard for health, safety and environment; increasing the political influence of ABC; being the leading force for workforce development and training; and continuously growing and delivering value to a diverse and committed membership.
Bellaman also leads the association’s advocacy for the merit shop philosophy, which emphasizes excellence and high performance on a fair and level playing field in the construction industry. He champions ABC’s industry-revolutionizing Safety Training Evaluation Process (STEP) and is a cofounder of the Construction Coalition for a Drug- and Alcohol-Free Workplace. He serves on the ACE Mentor Program Board of Directors and is a trustee for the Trimmer Construction Education Foundation, which awards scholarships and grants for construction education.
Bellaman earned a bachelor’s degree in architectural engineering from Pennsylvania State University.
Supplier Diversity Program SpecialistBoard of Governors of the Federal Reserve Board System
Supplier Diversity Program Specialist
Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve Board System
Marleitha G. Williams is the supplier diversity program specialist for the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. In this capacity, she is responsible for ensuring compliance with the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act as it relates to the inclusion of minority-owned and women-owned business enterprises in the Board’s acquisition process.
Prior to joining the Federal Reserve Board in 2011, Ms. Williams worked at Alabama’s largest electric utility corporation, Alabama Power Company, where she provided leadership and strategic direction to corporate business units in delivering results toward defined supplier diversity goals.
Throughout her career in Supplier Diversity and Supplier Relations, she has been affiliated with various organizations that focus on minority and women business development, including the National Minority Supplier Development Council and the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council. She has been recognized in local and national publications such as Women Enterprise USA for her work in Supplier Diversity. Ms. Williams received her bachelor’s degree from Birmingham Southern College.
Director, Herbert A. Stiefel Center for Trade Policy StudiesCato Institute
Director, Herbert A. Stiefel Center for Trade Policy Studies
Dan Ikenson is director of Cato’s Herbert A. Stiefel Center for Trade Policy Studies, where he coordinates and conducts research on all manner of international trade and investment policy. Since joining Cato in 2000, Ikenson has authored dozens of papers on various aspects of trade policy, focusing his research on U.S.-China trade relations; bilateral and multilateral trade agreements and institutions; globalization; U.S. manufacturing issues; trade politics; and trade remedies, such as the antidumping regime.
Ikenson has been involved in international trade since 1990. Before joining the Cato Institute in 2000, he was director of international trade planning for an international accounting and business advisory firm. In 1997 he cofounded and was a principal at an international trade consulting firm in Washington,.and from 1990 to 1997 he was a trade policy and antidumping analyst at a few international trade law practices. In addition to his many studies and articles, Ikenson is coauthor of the book Antidumping Exposed: The Devilish Details of Unfair Trade Law. He has testified before congressional committees on a variety of policy matter and has appeared on numerous television news programs and networks, including PBS, CNN, CNBC, Bloomberg TV, MSNBC, ABC News, Fox News, Fox Business News, and NPR. His articles have been published in widely circulated newspapers and magazines, including the Wall Street Journal,the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, the Chicago Tribune, the Washington Times, the Detroit News, Forbes, and National Review.
Ikenson holds a MA in economics from George Washington University.
Director, OSDBUU.S. Department of Education
U.S. Department of Education
Mrs. Scott has over 30 years of federal acquisition experience. She has held the positions of Contract Specialist, Contracting Officer, and Group Manager. Mrs. Scott has been the Contracting Officer and lead negotiator for many of the U.S. Department of Education’s major initiatives such as: Race to the Top, No Child Left Behind and several Federal Student Aid (FSA) projects; including FSA’s Modernization Project. She assumed her duties as the Director of Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization, in January 2013. Mrs. Scott is responsible for implementing and managing the Department’s small business program, as well as, ensuring that all small businesses have an opportunity to participate in providing goods and services to the U.S. Department of Education.
Mrs. Scott is a member of the United States Senior Executive Service. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing for Albany State University in Albany, GA.
Director - OSDBUU.S. Department of Energy
Charles R. Smith
Director - OSDBU
U.S. Department of Energy
Charles “Charlie” Smith is the Director for the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU), serving as the lead advocate for enhancing the use of small businesses to meet the Agency’s range of missions.
During Charlie’s career in both the public and private sectors, he developed an appreciation for business management and program development. Prior to joining the DOE, Charlie worked 13 years with the investment bank JP Morgan Chase, as well as with smaller companies, developing focused business strategies that helped government entities across the nation successfully achieve their missions. His experience forging successful government relationships with the business community has been one of his many noteworthy career accomplishments.
Charlie, a military veteran, received his commission from the U.S. Navy’s Officer Candidate School in Newport, RI and served five years on active duty in the Navy as a Surface Warfare Officer onboard a guided missile destroyer homeported in Norfolk, VA. Amongst Charlie’s many Navy contributions was his recognized leadership of the ship’s anti-submarine warfare division during three overseas deployments.
After Charlie honorably concluded his military career, he moved to New Jersey, to work on a congressional staff and subsequently in various roles in three state government administrations. Over the next fifteen years, Charlie served as a Senior Advisor to the Office of New Jersey Governor, as the Deputy Commissioner for the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance, and as a Director in the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development.
Charlie was born in Massachusetts, and then was raised in upstate New York. He is the proud father of a beautiful daughter, and he holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from Princeton University.
Chief of Minority and Women Business and Diversity Inclusion Branch – OMWIFederal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC)
Chief of Minority and Women Business and Diversity Inclusion Branch – OMWI
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC)
Victor Christiansen is the Chief of Minority and Women Business and Diversity Inclusion Branch of the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Arlington, VA. He is responsible for spearheading FDIC outreach activities and for implementing Section 342 of the Dodd Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010.
Mr. Christiansen was formerly employed by the United States Department of the Interior in a number of different managerial positions. He worked in the Office of Indian Energy and Economic Development where he worked with Native American and Alaskan Native businesses to assist them in developing and improving business opportunities through a nationwide outreach program that provided technical assistance and training.
Previously, Mr. Christiansen worked at the Government Accountability Office (formerly the General Accounting Office) where he was responsible for evaluating the efficiency and effectiveness of a variety of Federal Government programs.
Mr. Christiansen has a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Lincoln University (PA) and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Maryland.
National Director, Customer Care & Outreach Office of Small Business UtilizationGSA
National Director, Customer Care & Outreach Office of Small Business Utilization
Mr. de’Wayne Carter serves as the National Director with the Office of Customer Care & Outreach Division under GSA’s Office of Small Business Utilization. In this role, Mr. Carter leads a team of Small Business Specialists who advocate for all socioeconomic categories of small businesses, provide training, counseling and subcontracting review to help small businesses navigate through the federal procurement process and to ensure that small businesses are well represented.
Mr. Carter has been with GSA since 1983 and has extensive experience and tacit knowledge in all aspects of managing small business programs. Prior to Mr. Carter assuming his role as National Director, he served as a Supervisory Small Business Technical Advisor (SBTA) providing guidance on the federal government’s current small business policies to GSA’s contracting staff. As an SBTA, Mr. Carter ensured that small businesses were provided with the maximum practicable opportunity to participate in the federal procurement process.
Mr. Carter in a native to the Washington, DC metropolitan area and resides in the Maryland.
Outreach Manager, OSBUGeneral Services Administration (GSA)
Outreach Manager, OSBU
General Services Administration (GSA)
Director - OSDBUU.S. Department of Homeland Security
Director - OSDBU
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Kevin Boshears was named Director of the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU) in May 2003. He is responsible for the overall implementation of the department’s small business procurement program.
Mr. Boshears was Director of the Treasury Department’s OSDBU since February 1999. He served in the same office as a procurement analyst since June 1995 and was responsible for providing guidance to the small business specialists located in Treasury’s twelve bureaus.
Mr. Boshears brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in the procurement field, having served as a contracting officer for the Justice Department prior to his
duties with the Treasury Department. Mr. Boshears is a well known instructor in the federal small business procurement arena. He has conducted numerous training courses, presentations, and briefings on contracting with small, small disadvantaged, 8(a), women-owned small, HUBZone, and service disabled veteran-owned small business concerns.
Mr. Boshears served as the Vice-Chair of the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization Directors' Interagency Council from FY 2001 through FY 2004. His efforts have been widely recognized with various awards from small business trade associations, other federal agencies, and industry organizations. In 2006, he was presented with the Frances Perkins Vanguard Award for Exemplary Utilization of Women-Owned Small Businesses by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) – marking the fourth year that he received this award. In April 2005, he was presented with the Federal Gold Star Award of Excellence by SBA in recognition of the exemplary performance of the Department and its dedicated personnel who carry out the aggressive goals and strategic initiatives that help ensure a role for small business in the federal marketplace.
He holds a BBA degree from the College of William and Mary, and earned his MBA from Liberty University.
Deputy Director - OSDBUU.S. Department of Homeland Security
E. Darlene Bullock
Deputy Director - OSDBU
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
E. Darlene Bullock began serving as the Deputy Director of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU) in June 2015. Ms. Bullock is also a Senior Procurement Analyst in the OSDBU serving as the Program Manager for several small business programs to include: 8(a), small disadvantaged, and women-owned. She also is a Desk Officer providing technical procurement and small business support to four DHS operational contracting offices.
Ms. Bullock has over 27 years of experience in procurement, federal assistance, and acquisitions management. Before joining the OSDBU in January 2011, Ms. Bullock was a Division Director and Contracting Officer in the DHS, Office of Procurement Operations (OPO). OPO is one of the largest procurement divisions in DHS obligating about $4 - 4.5 Billion a year. Her division was responsible for supporting the Office of the Secretary and other high-visibility offices at DHS Headquarters. Ms. Bullock oversaw and managed the award process of the first DHS-wide Program Management, Administrative, Clerical, and Technical Services (PACTS) Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) Contracts which were set-aside for Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Businesses (SDVOSBs). PACTS had an estimated value at $1.5 Billion. The award of PACTS enabled DHS to meet and exceed the 3% SDVOSB goal for the first time in Fiscal Year 2010.
Ms. Bullock has held leadership positions at several Federal and local agencies including the Department of Homeland Security Headquarters, U.S. Agency for International Development, U. S. Department of Commerce, District of Columbia Government, and the U.S. Army.
Ms. Bullock began her acquisition career with the U.S. Army successfully completing the Department of Defense contract specialist intern program. She is a Certified Federal Contract Manager (CFCM) with the National Contract Management Association (NCMA) and maintains her FAC-C Level III Certification in Contracting. She has completed various Federal Executive leadership courses throughout her career. She has an undergraduate degree in Agricultural Business and Resource Economics from the University of Maryland, College Park and a MBA in International Management from Southeastern University.
Director - OSDBUU.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
Jean Lin Pao
Director - OSDBU
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
Jean Lin Pao is the Director for the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), serving as the principal advocate for utilizing small and disadvantaged businesses in federal contracting to meet HUD’s mission. As a member of the Senior Executive Service in a cabinet-level department, Ms. Pao has over twenty-five years of federal experience in small business advocacy, enterprise human capital management, employee engagement and training, budgeting and acquisitions, information technology planning, administration, business management, strategic planning, program evaluation, and policy development. Previously, she served as the General Deputy Assistant Secretary for HUD’s Office of Policy Development and Research and Chief Management Officer/Deputy Assistant Secretary for Business Management and Administration in HUD’s Office of the Chief Human Capital Officer. Ms. Pao holds a Bachelor of Arts in urban studies from Barnard College, Columbia University and a Master of Public Policy from the Harris School, University of Chicago. She is an Excellence in Government Senior Fellow and a recipient of the Presidential Rank Award. She is also a certified executive and leadership coach.
Business Activities Program AnalystNational Credit Union Administration (NCUA)
Business Activities Program Analyst
National Credit Union Administration (NCUA)
Miguel A. Polanco has managed NCUA’s supplier diversity program since August 2011. Previous to his current job, Miguel served his country as a Military Intelligence officer in the U.S. Army. Afterwards, he worked in corporate finance with General Motors in New York and at Citibank Puerto Rico. In 2010, he started working for the Small Business Administration under the 8(a) program, followed by his current work with NCUA. Miguel is a native of San Juan, Puerto Rico, and a graduate from the United States Military Academy at West Point, and the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.
Program Manager – Business Activities OMWIOffice of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC)
Program Manager – Business Activities OMWI
Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC)
Madelynn commenced her career with the OCC in 1995 and helped establish the OCC’s Office of Minority and Women Inclusion (OMWI) program in 2011. She holds a psychology degree from Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island. Madelynn graduated magna cum laude from Creighton University Law School, Omaha, Nebraska, and is a member of the Missouri Bar Association. After completing her legal studies, she served as a judicial clerk for the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals. She is a Certified Professional in Supplier Diversity (through the Institute for Supply Management) and a Certified Supplier Diversity Professional (through the Alliance of Supplier Diversity Professionals). Madelynn offices in Denver, Colorado, and lives in the beautiful foothills of the Rocky Mountains.
Deputy Director – OMWIU.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
Deputy Director – OMWI
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
John Moses is Deputy Director of the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion (OMWI) at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Created by the Dodd-Frank Act, OMWI is responsible for all matters relating to diversity in management, employment, and business activities at the SEC. John assists the Director in developing standards to ensure diversity and inclusion within the SEC workforce and senior management, and in assessing the diversity policies and practices of entities regulated by the SEC. His work also includes increasing the participation of minority and women-owned businesses in programs and contracts at the SEC. Prior to joining the SEC, John founded and led a technology-focused company, through which he developed expertise on government procurement from the contractor perspective. Previously, he held leadership roles in the international hospitality sector with experience in Southeast Asia, the Caribbean Region, and Europe. A former Surface Warfare Officer in the US Navy, John holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and undergraduate and graduate degrees from Stanford University.
Distinguished Visiting Fellow, Project for Economic GrowthThe Heritage Foundation
Distinguished Visiting Fellow, Project for Economic Growth
The Heritage Foundation
Stephen Moore, who formerly wrote on the economy and public policy for The Wall Street Journal, is a Distinguished Visiting Fellow, Project for Economic Growth, at The Heritage Foundation. Moore, who also was a member of The Journal's editorial board, returned to Heritage in January 2014—about 25 years after his tenure as the leading conservative think tank’s Grover M. Hermann Fellow in Budgetary Affairs from 1984 to 1987.
Moore was previously the founder and president of the Club for Growth, which raises money for political candidates who favor free-market economic policies. Moore also founded the Free Enterprise Fund before joining The Wall Street Journal.
Over the years, Moore has served as a senior economist at the Congressional Joint Economic Committee, and as a senior economics fellow at the Cato Institute, where he published dozens of studies on federal and state fiscal policy.
During the 2016 presidential campaign, Moore served as senior economic advisor to Donald Trump and helped draft early versions of the Trump tax plan. He is currently a senior economics analyst at CNN, and author of "Fueling Freedom: Exposing the Mad War on Energy."
This year he is writing "Trumponomics: Inside the America First Plan to get our Economy Back on Track with Arthur Laffer."
Women-Owned Small Business Program Manager and Industry LiaisonDepartment of Treasury
Melissa "Lisa" Jenkins
Women-Owned Small Business Program Manager and Industry Liaison
Department of Treasury
Melissa "Lisa" Jenkins is a solutions focused professional with over 15 years of extensive hands-on experience in the Federal government directing, developing, coordinating, and managing information and service programs for diverse administrative and program support environments. Ms. Jenkins currently serves as the Women-Owned Small Business Program Manager and Industry Liaison at Treasury. Lisa is a change agent acknowledged for her technical capacity to provide exceptional small business advocacy which enables her to respond to challenges with confidence, determination, and a win/win resolution for the Federal government and small business community. Her outstanding communication and interpersonal skills allow her to effectively establish rapport with Heads of Agencies, Federal, State and Local counterparts and the business community with a proven ability to adjust to changing situations. She provides acquisition training, technical assistance, and small business counseling to both the external business community and internal and external agency officials. Lisa is frequently called upon to serve as a panelist for programs in which she provides guidance to small businesses hoping to expand their government contracting opportunities. As a result, she is a much-sought-after mentor for entrepreneurs hoping to take their businesses to the next level.
In her day-to-day dealings, she is positive, professional, and engaging, helping small business owners achieve the next level in their professional endeavors. She has a stellar reputation among government and the small business community and is a consummate professional who has demonstrated that she truly cares about the success of both.
Director - OSDBUU.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)
Director - OSDBU
U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)
Mauricio P. Vera is a career member of the Senior Executive Service and serves as Director of the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID’s) Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU). In this role, Mr. Vera leads USAID’s efforts to provide maximum opportunities for small businesses to participate in agency contract awards through outreach, education, and creative procurement initiatives. Under Mr. Vera’s leadership, USAID achieved significant and unprecedented improvements in its small business accomplishments. Specifically, USAID’s grade on the Small Business Administration’s Procurement Scorecard increased from “F’s” to “A’s”, including an “A+” in 2014. In 2016, Mr. Vera received a Meritorious Presidential Rank Award, a prestigious career recognition awarded to only five percent of the Federal Government’s Senior Executives for sustained superior accomplishments and inspirational leadership.
From 2001 to 2008, Mr. Vera successfully managed the Small Business Program at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). Previously, Mr. Vera established and managed the Smithsonian Institution’s Supplier Diversity Program. Mr. Vera, a native of Chile, earned an MBA from George Mason University and a B.S. in Agricultural Economics from the University of Maryland.
DirectorVirginia PTAP Office
Virginia PTAP Office
Anna Urman is the Director of the Virginia Procurement Technical Assistance Program (PTAP). PTAP’s mission is to increase contracting activity between small businesses, prime government contractors and the federal and state government agencies by providing training and counseling throughout Virginia. Anna is a leading research analyst specializing in government procurement policy and market analysis. Anna holds a JD from Georgetown Law, and worked on her Masters in Government Contracts and IP Law at George Washington Law School.
Anna lives in Alexandria, VA with her husband and daughters, and is active local politics and animal rescue.
Chief Technology OfficerCenters for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)
Chief Technology Officer
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)
George Linares is the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). As CTO, George serves as one of the Agency's principal officials responsible for information technology (IT) at CMS in the following areas: systems architecture & security, platforms and networks. George advocates the optimization of CMS' IT investments and proposes enhancements to CMS IT and information technology practices to maintain cost-effective offerings, with an emphasis on the ever evolving and maturing of CMS’ technical environment.
Small and Medium-sized Enterprise Speakers
Jacob Hsu is the CEO of Catalyte (www.catalyte.io), one of the largest software engineering services companies in the United States. Catalyte advances human potential for the digital revolution by using artificial intelligence to identify individuals, regardless of background, who have the innate potential and cognitive ability to be great software developers. With development centers in Baltimore, Chicago, Portland, and soon Boston and Salt Lake City, Catalyte has created a diverse and US-based technology workforce to help companies scale software innovation.
Prior to Catalyte, Mr. Hsu was CEO of Symbio, a global software engineering and R&D services company. He transformed Symbio from an early stage startup to a global diversified IT services company. Together with its parent company VXI, Symbio had over 23,000 employees around the world.
Before joining Symbio, he was the founding CEO of Trilogica, a data aggregation software company, and the founding CEO of Epitome, a banking applications company. Mr. Hsu began his career in investment banking focused on mergers and acquisitions.
Mr. Hsu has also co-founded or been a founding investor in over thirty other companies in the United States and Asia. He received his bachelors from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and was named by Chief Executive Magazine as one of the world's Top 12 Young Global Leaders of Tomorrow and as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum.
Mr. Hsu is a founding member of the Markle Foundation’s Rework America Task Force, focused on modernizing the nation’s outdated labor market and unlocking economic opportunity for American job seekers, workers and businesses. He is also a board member of Welcoming America, which helps cities in the US be more welcoming of new immigrants.
Calvin is managing partner at E14 Fund, the MIT Media Lab venture fund. E14 invests in early stage deep tech companies from the MIT Media Lab community.
Previously he was co-founder and CEO of Transist Impact Labs, an incubator and investor in impact-driven tech startups in China and the US. Earlier Calvin was founder and CEO of Qifang, China's first online student loan service and the first Chinese company recognized by the WEF as a Technology Pioneer. Calvin is a member of the Aspen Institute's inaugural China Fellowship Program, a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader and served on the WEF Global Agenda Council on Social Innovation. He was named one of Fast Company magazine's 100 Most Creative People In Business for 2011, was named 2009 Chinese Business Leader of the Year by Horasis and Baker & McKenzie, and is a Social Innovation Park Fellow. He has an MBA from TRIUM (NYU, LSE, HEC Paris), a B.A. from Yale University and has also studied social entrepreneurship, global leadership and other management and policy subjects at Harvard University and INSEAD.
President & CEOFSR
President & CEO
Tracy Balazs is the President and CEO of FSR. She launched FSR in 2004 and has built it into a leading provider of program management and organizational development solutions. As an entrepreneur, visionary, and thoughtful leader, she is highly regarded in the sectors of government contracting, recruitment, executive search, veteran job placement, and talent acquisition by providing specialized expertise for clients nationwide. For 25 years Tracy cared for patients dealing with devastating injuries as a Registered Nurse in trauma and ICU units in a variety of settings, including numerous prestigious hospital systems in New York, Baltimore, and Washington, D.C.
She parlayed her rewarding nursing career into a government contracting executive focused on healthcare program support services. FSR’s focus has been supporting military healthcare facilities providing care to the military service members and their families and veterans. Tracy’s business knowledge is self-taught guided by intuition, a desire to learn, and staying true to her values. She seeks opportunities to learn from successful businesses and industry leaders and applies those lessons into making FSR a stronger, healthier company. Valuing how others shared their experience and knowledge with her, Tracy embraces opportunities to help other business owners new to government contracting by sharing Best Practices and insight. She is a featured speaker at numerous forums including the 2015 Congressional Hearing on Small Business. Her dedication to help other small businesses develop was recognized by being awarded as a Mentor in the 8(a) Mentor-Protégé program for the Small Business Administration.
After a decade of working with the Federal government, Tracy expanded FSR’s services to the private sector with a focus on leadership & organizational development, talent acquisition, executive search, information technology and specialized human resources. She recognized the need for personnel to match an organization’s mission, culture, and values for long-term retention and job satisfaction. Her understanding of how an organization’s goals need to align with the people it employs achieved increased operational success for clients. Tracy implemented an extremely selective hiring process to ensure clients receive the highest quality personnel that aligned with the organization’s specific and unique culture.
Tracy grew up on military bases and experienced firsthand the sacrifices and dedication of service members and their families. She knows the sadness of parent’s deployment and the jubilation of a ship’s return. Tracy’s dedication to service has lived on through FSR. Tracy firmly believes no veteran should have to fight for a job. Inspired by the White House hiring initiative, she created FSR’s Working Warrior Program ℠ to help veterans navigate the complex job market, to create incentives for companies with veteran hiring initiatives, and to help companies navigate the vast and diverse veteran talent tool parleying their military experience to the private sector.
Tracy not only inspires FSR’s company infrastructure, contractors, employees, and partners but also its clients, small businesses, and the community at large. She strives to continue helping others. FSR is an award winning human resources and program management firm that serves clients in both the public and private sector nationwide. We are a People Solutions company dedicated to the success of our clients and facilitating lasting relationships.
Co-Founder, Managing PartnerPalm Drive Capital
Co-Founder, Managing Partner
Palm Drive Capital
Hendrick Lee is the co-founder and managing partner at Palm Drive Capital. Palm Drive Capital is a growth equity fund based in New York, focusing on young revenue- generating companies within SaaS, B2B, marketplace, enterprise services and innovative data applications in traditional industries. Portfolio companies include high growth startups like Jet.com, Zenefits, Addepar, WeLab, Bench Accounting, Spire Global, Hyperloop, Magic Leap, and Boom Supersonic, etc. Prior to Palm Drive, Hendrick was an investment associate at AEA Investors. He has been a serial entrepreneur since college. He is the co-founder of Lair East, former CEO and current chairman of Pebbo, and co-founder of Canidu. Hendrick holds double undergraduate degree in B.S. of Chemical Engineering and B.A. of Philosophy and a master degree in Management Science and Engineering from Stanford University.
President and CEOQnexis
President and CEO
Kurt is a technology entrepreneur with long and successful record in sales, marketing and executive management with early-stage and Fortune 1000 technology companies. He is President and CEO of Qnexis, a DC based provider of mobility, cloud and strategic communications services.
As a consummate entrepreneur, he has commercialized mobile app products for the Mass Emergency Notification marketplace and in the Business Mobile Collaboration space. His RUOK (pronounced as Are Your O.K.) mass emergency notification mobile app was a winner at the AFCEA Cyber Shark Tank contest. He has also commercialized a health care mobile app called LIINX that lets doctors and nurses connect with patients to create patient-centric communities that improves the quality of care.
Prior to founding Qnexis, Kurt has held management and executive level assignments for leading technology companies. Kurt is a regular speaker at business conferences and has published numerous articles on effective marketing. Kurt chairs a DC metro business network for technology entrepreneurs called ForeFront. He is also co-founder of the Asian American CEO Organization (AACO), a business networking group with the goal of promoting and grooming Asian American business leaders and serves as a board member on the U.S. Pan Asian American Chamber of Commerce (USPAACC).
Founder and CEOAmpcus
Ann Anjali Ramakumaran
Founder and CEO
Anjali Ann Ramakumaran, Founder and CEO of Ampcus Inc. (Ampcus), is a technology savvy entrepreneur with more than 15 years of contribution towards the design, development and delivery of leading edge Technology Solutions and Human Capital Management across the globe. Under her leadership she has cultivated Ampcus into a fast growing Consulting and Professional Services firm. For eight consecutive years (2009-2016), she has been recognized as a top Asian American owned business by the USPAACC. In addition, for the past seven consecutive years (2010-2016), she has been honored as one of the 50 Fastest Growing Women Owned Businesses in the CONUS by the Women Presidents Organization. Under Ann’s leadership, Ampcus has made the Inc. 500/5000 list and has been recognized as a Top Diversity Business for the past 7 years (2010-2016). Ann was also awarded Women in Technology Entrepreneur of the Year by WIT and most recently received the Chairman’s Award for Inspirational Leadership from the CRMSDC. Ampcus has also received the Global Growth Award from Astra Women’s Business Alliance, Supplier of the Year Award from the GMSDC and the Top Asian American Business Award from the USPAACC-SE.
Ann works closely with her Advisory Board, whose advice/input on strategy and direction helps her drive the company to attain its vision of being one of the largest and most successful high performing Professional Services companies globally. She has been actively involved in executing a consultative methodology to define, qualify and quantify Ampcus’ target clients, determine their strategic IT and business objectives and from this developed solutions which proactively address their current and evolving demands and needs.
Ann serves on the CRMSDC Board of Directors, WPEO Leadership Committee and the USPAACC Scholarship Committee. She has been a speaker at numerous National and Local Procurement and Diversity Conferences. In addition, Ann has mentored several women and minority start up’s in an effort to help them grow their business. Ann holds her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Business and Commercial Management from India and has completed Executive Management from the Robins School of Business, University of Richmond Virginia and an Advanced Management from the Kellogg School of Management Northwestern University Illinois.
Sameer Penakalapati is a passionate technocrat and visionary. He has a graduate degree in Engineering from one of the premier institutes in India. Prior to embarking on his own venture, he worked for over 15 years in various hands-on programming and technical leadership roles in Fortune 500 companies.
His entrepreneurial journey started with the founding of Avani Technology Solutions in 2008. Avani has since grown into a highly respected custom software solutions and IT staffing company and has been recognized as one of the Inc.500 fastest growing private companies in America for three straight years in a row. It also made the 2017 Deloitte Technology Fast 500 list – an honor awarded to companies for technological innovation, entrepreneurship, and rapid growth.
Even as Avani grew rapidly, Sameer’s passion for building technology products for small and medium enterprises never abated. With that was born CEIPAL, a Cloud based Human Capital Management solutions for Recruitment, Onboarding and Workforce Management. Today, CEIPAL has 600+ customers.
Sameer has continued playing a transformational role in developing other out-of-the-box, innovative technology solutions. In 2016 Infyx was conceived - a stealth mode start-up enabling 'Marketing Automation and Social Intelligence'. As expected from Sameer, Infyx promises to revolutionize the PR industry through automation of Marketing, Branding and Social Intelligence. 2016 also breathed life into Idea2Market – a software solution to take an idea and seamlessly move it through the various steps - Idea Scaling, Protoyping, Application Development and ultimately it to bringing it to Market. A relentless innovator, Sameer is presently working on developing a Information Security As A Service (iSaaS) product.
In December 2016, Sameer took over as CEO of Indotronix International Corporation.
Indotronix has been providing staffing and custom technology solutions to Fortune 500 companies since 1986. Sameer is spearheading Indotronix into the rapidly changing digital era by expanding in the Private and Public sector.
Sameer also firmly believes in giving back to the communities his companies operate in by providing learning opportunities. Thus was founded Nigama Foundation with the mission to pave a path of better education for children who really deserved it but didn't have a choice. The foundation operates a primary school under the leadership of Sameer for children who are orphans or whose parents cannot afford to care for them. He also contributes his time and resources to youth programs at YMCA, Red Cross etc.
Executive Vice President, Client Relations and Business Development CompanyPyramid Consulting, Inc.
Executive Vice President, Client Relations and Business Development Company
Pyramid Consulting, Inc.
Namita Tirath is EVP of Pyramid Consulting, Inc., a global information technology company specializing in staffing, solutions and products Founded in 1996 in the Atlanta metropolitan area, over 22 years Pyramid has grown to a $250M global business with offices and operations in over 20 countries.
As the Executive Vice President of Client Relations and Business Development, Namita’s primary responsibility is to set Pyramid’s sales vision, to maintain the firm’s customer relationships, and to achieve its revenue targets.
Her scope of responsibility includes the US and Canada in North America, and she is also responsible for global operations that include India, Singapore and the UK. Namita began her IT career as a consulting Systems Analyst, and leverages both her technical and business perspectives for the benefit Pyramid’s clients.
Namita also devotes extensive volunteer hours to Atlanta’s technology community and IT professional organizations, including the Women in Technology (WIT), the Society for Information Management (SIM), and the Georgia Minority Supplier Development Council, among others. Namita holds an Associate’s Degree in Computer Programming, and a Master’s of Science degree in Mathematics.
President/CEOTPW & Associates
TPW & Associates
Tanya Penny is a strategy and finance executive with an extensive track record across critical functions in the Fortune 50 realm. Penny held positions as Chief Procurement Officer at Verizon, with over $35 billion in spend and Senior Vice President of Real Estate, controlling a $2B budget and 3,000+ staff.
As President/CEO of TPW & Associates, a strategy consulting firm advising clients on financial and business performance, Penny continues to design and lead high-impact business transformation projects.
Penny serves on the advisory board of Ampcus, Inc., Ivy Community Charities, and leads the Board of Directors for the Redda Group.
CEO & Co-founderChelfie
CEO & Co-founder
AJ Jaghori is a serial Technopreneur, Data Scientist, Inventor, Early Blockchain Pioneer, Founder of the MIT Social Genome Project, and a Fortune Magazine Most Influential People in Business - 40 under 40 nominee.
A self-taught, dyslexic coder, he started his first tech company at 17 from the back of a car in Palo Alto and sold it at 19. He’s since had 4 successful exits including to Google and Verizon, 2 failed ventures, a month-long digital detox with a Buddhist monk whose teachings helped him overcome burnout, and a patent litigation battle that nearly bankrupted him --- all before the age of 30. AJ is the CEO and Co-founder of social commerce upstart Chelfie, Founder and Managing Partner at the global tech incubator HelloLoCo, Author of the upcoming book SURVIVING THE STARTUP ECHOCHAMBER. A counterintuitive model for accelerating from concept to market, and Entrepreneur In Residence at the Human <> AI Project where among other moonshots, his team is developing a platform that is capable of storing over 200 petabytes in a single gram of DNA.