2019 Women’s Power Summit on Law & Leadership


Christina M. Ackermann

Executive Vice President, General Counsel Bausch Health Companies Inc.

Ms. Ackermann joined Bausch Health as Executive Vice President, General Counsel, in August 2016. In this role, she is responsible for Bausch Health’s worldwide legal affairs, compliance, global security and enterprise risk management.  Prior to Bausch Health,  Ms. Ackermann was part of the Novartis group of companies for 14 years, most recently serving as Senior Vice President, General Counsel for Alcon, where she was responsible for the for the legal, intellectual property and compliance functions. Previously, she served as Global Head, Legal and General Counsel at Sandoz, the generics division of Novartis, from 2007 to 2012. She joined Novartis Pharma in 2002 as Head, Legal Technical Operations and Ophthalmics, and assumed the role of Head Legal General Medicine in July 2005. Before Novartis, Ms. Ackermann served in Associate General Counsel roles with Bristol Myers Squibb and DuPont Pharmaceuticals, as well as in private practice, where she focused on securities, and mergers & acquisitions. Read more about Christina Ackermann.

Linda L. Addison

Independent Director and Immediate Past Managing Partner Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP

Ms. Addison is a corporate board member and Immediate Past U.S. Managing Partner, Chair of the U.S. Management Committee, and global board member of Norton Rose Fulbright.  She is founding President of the Center for Women in Law.  The American Bar Association honored her with its prestigious Margaret Brent Women Lawyers of the Achievement Award, the ABA’s highest award recognizing the accomplishments of women lawyers who have excelled in their field and paved the way to success for other women.  Crain’s New York Business named Linda one of the “50 Most Powerful Women in New York.”  Ms. Addison also has been named one of the “50 Most Influential Women Lawyers in America” and one of the “100 Most Influential Lawyers in America,” both by the National Law Journal.  The Texas Lawyer honored her with its first Lifetime Achievement Award, and the New York Law Journal honored her as a “Distinguished Leader.”  Read more about Linda Addison.

Gloria Allred

Founding Partner Allred, Maroko & Goldberg (AM&G)

Ms. Allred is a founding partner of the law firm of Allred, Maroko & Goldberg (AM&G). Her firm handles more women’s rights cases than any other private law firm in the nation and has won hundreds of millions of dollars for victims.  Over the course of her 42 year legal career, Ms. Allred has won countless honors for her pioneering legal work on behalf of women's rights and rights for minorities.  Ms. Allred is a three-time Emmy nominee for her commentaries on KABC television in Los Angeles.  Her nationally syndicated television show “We the People, with Gloria Allred” was also nominated in 2012 for a Daytime Emmy Award.  In January 2014 Ms. Allred received the Lifetime Achievement Award from The National Trial Lawyers for her trailblazing and pioneering role in combating injustices and winning new rights especially for women and minorities.  She was honored at the 2016 International Women’s Forum (IWF) World Leadership Conference with the 2016 IWF Women Who Make a Difference Award.  Read more about Gloria Allred.

Dolores S. Atencio

Visiting Scholar University of Denver Latino Center for Community Engagement & Scholorship

Ms. Atencio left the traditional practice of law becoming the first Development Director for public radio station KUVO, 89.3FM, joining two other Latinas in broadcasting the jazz station, now one of the world’s renowned jazz stations; thereafter, Director of Legal and Public Services for the Colorado Bar Association where she was recruited by the Denver Grand Prix Auto Race as Vice President & General Counsel, becoming one of the first woman/Latina manager in the racing industry. Ms. Atencio returned to law serving as a Denver Hearings Officer and Colorado Administrative Law Judge before entering private practice.  Throughout Ms. Atencio was actively involved in bar association work that led to election as President of the Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA), Colorado Hispanic Bar Association, Commissioner of the ABA Commission on Women and first Co-Chair of the HNBA Latina Commission.  Under her tenure, the Latina Commission published the first two national studies on Latina lawyers, revived the Las Primeras Research Project she started in 1993 and created the Las Primeras Abogadas Annual Award.  On the celebration of its 10th Anniversary, the Latina Commission honored Dolores with this award. Read more about Dolores S. Atencio.

Kelly Ayotte

U.S. Senator New Hampshire (2011-17)

Senator Ayotte was elected to the Senate in 2010, where she was ranked as one of the most bipartisan senators working across party lines to find solutions to our nation’s biggest challenges. During her tenure in the Senate (2011–2017), Ayotte chaired the Armed Services Subcommittee on Readiness and the Commerce Subcommittee on Aviation Operations. She also served on the Senate Armed Services, Budget, Commerce, Science, and Transportation, Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, Small Business and Entrepreneurship, and Aging Committees. Ayotte is currently a senior advisor to Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions as well as a member of the boards of News Corp, Caterpillar, and the ONE Campaign, among others.  Ayotte is a leading voice on national security and was named by Foreign Policy magazine as one of the top 50 Republicans on national security affairs in the country. Read more about Senator Ayotte.


Marcia E. Backus

Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer Occidental Petroleum Corporation

Ms. Backus is Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer of Occidental Petroleum. In this role, she oversees more than 60 lawyers in the U.S. and at Occidental's assets around the world.  Before joining Occidental in 2013, Ms. Backus was a partner at Vinson & Elkins in Houston, Texas, with responsibility for the firm's Energy Transactions/Projects Practice Group. She represented industry and private equity companies in domestic and international corporate matters, mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, private equity investments, project development and other energy transactions.  Ms. Backus is ranked among the leading business lawyers in oil and gas and energy by both Chambers USA and Chambers Global, and was named 2012 “Lawyer of the Year” in mergers and acquisitions by The Best Lawyers in America. Read more about Marcia Backus.

Brad Barron

President and CEO NuStar Energy L.P.

Mr. Barron became Chief Executive Officer, President and a director of NuStar GP, LLC in January 2014. Prior to the merger pursuant to which NuStar GP Holdings, LLC became a subsidiary of NuStar Energy L.P., Mr. Barron also served as President, Chief Executive Officer and a director of NuStar GP Holdings, LLC since January 2014. Mr. Barron previously served as NuStar’s Executive Vice President and General Counsel where he provided legal counsel on all major transactions, assured compliance with securities laws, and provided legal counsel to the boards of directors and principal officers.

Susan L. Blount

Interim Executive Director Center for Women in Law

Ms. Blount is currently the Interim Executive Director of  the Center for Women in Law. From 2005-2015, Ms. Blount served as General Counsel of Prudential Financial, Inc., where she was responsible for the company’s 700 person global law, compliance, business ethics and external affairs (LCBE) organization. Ms. Blount was also a member of Prudential’s Office of the Chairman Group, the six senior-most officers of the company. Read more about Susan L. Blount.

Paula Boggs & The Paula Boggs Band

Founder Boggs Media, LLC

Paula Boggs is the founder of Boggs Media, LLC, a business that manages her music, speaking, and other creative business activities. She is a Musician, Public Speaker, Lawyer and Philanthropist.  She is also a Board Member of numerous for-profit and non-profit organizations.

Paula Boggs served as Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary, Law and Corporate Affairs at Starbucks Corporation from 2002 to 2012. Her prior professional experience includes serving as Vice President, Legal, for Products, Operations and Technology at Dell Computer Corporation, and as a partner at the law firm of Preston Gates & Ellis, LLP. She also had a 14-year career in public service, including as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, and in various capacities as an attorney for the U.S. Army, the Department of Defense and the White House Office of Legal Counsel. Read more about Paula Boggs.

Noralee M. Bradley

Independent Director and Partner Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP

Ms. Bradley is a Senior Securities and M&A Partner at Blake Cassels & Graydon LLP having practiced corporate law for over 27 years in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.  She has Commerce and Law degrees and attended the Executive Leadership Program at Ivey Business School at University of Western Ontario.

Ms. Bradley has provided advice to clients from initial capitalization (including private equity funding) through the cycle of private financings, initial public offerings, acquisition and exit strategies, many involving cross border elements.  Ms. Bradley is recognized as a leading lawyer in her field in a number of legal publications including in the mid-market and received. Read more about Noralee Bradley.

Linda Broocks

Partner Kean Miller LLP

Ms. Broocks is a founder and the current president of the executive committee of the Center for Women in Law.  At Kean Miller she maintains an active practice in trials and appeals of complex commercial, real estate, securities, personal injury and employment cases.  Prior to joining Kean Miller, she was a partner at Ogden, Broocks and Hall and Baker Botts L.L.P. In addition to being Board Certified in Civil Trial Law and Civil Appellate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, Ms. Broocks is also a certified mediator and an arbitrator for the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. Read more about Linda Broocks.

Cristina Carvalho

Firmwide Managing Partner Arent Fox

Ms. Carvalho is a Firmwide Managing Partner at Arent Fox.  She has been widely recognized for her work in commercial transactions, intellectual property, licensing, and technology for leading US and foreign companies. She received a 2018 Women Who Mean Business Award from Washington Business Journal; was named a 2017  “Star of the Bar” by the Washington, DC Women’s Bar Association; was honored as one of Washington, DC’s “Most Powerful Women” by Washingtonian magazine in 2017; was recognized as a leading trademark attorney by World Trademark Review in 2016 and 2017; has been recognized as a top lawyer in “Latin America’s Top 100 Lawyers” by Latinvex since 2016; and was named both a leading IP practitioner in Managing Intellectual Property’s “IP Stars” and the same publication’s list of “IP Stars – Top 250 Women in IP” in 2013-2018.  Read more about Cristina Carvalho.

Janice Block Chaddock

Global Executive Leader, Board Member and Speaker

Ms. Chaddock is a global executive leader, board member and speaker who has helped transform enterprises in the education and technology industries. Ms. Chaddock spent the last twelve years of her career at the global education leader Kaplan Inc, where she held multiple leadership roles simultaneously, including Chief Legal, Compliance and Human Resources Officer. Kaplan, owned by The Graham Holdings Company (NYSE: GHC), educates more than one million students and professionals annually with over 20,000 employees and operations in 400 locations in 30 countries. Ms. Chaddock has served as a board member and advisor to public, non-profit, charitable organizations and philanthropic foundations. Read more about Janice Block Chaddock.

Stephanie L. Chandler

Partner Jackson Walker LLP

Ms. Chandler leads the San Antonio Corporate practice at the law firm of Jackson Walker LLP.  In early November 2017, she received a call for help from the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs. Reeling from one of the largest mass shootings in U.S. history, the small church found itself at a loss with almost all of their leadership team and those with signatory authority and decision authority having lost their lives in the terrible incident. Ms. Chandler walked alongside the church, from guiding the pastor through the first meeting of the membership following the shooting, to the formation of a Restoration Committee to help the church meet its immediate needs and minister to the many victims, to managing very contentious press relations seeking detailed information as to how victims needs were being met while the church struggled to maintain the privacy of the individuals who had already been so hurt by the tragedy. Read more about Stephanie Chandler.


Linda Perez Clark

Managing Partner Kean Miller

Ms. Clark is a partner in the Baton Rouge office of Kean Miller. She is also the Managing Partner of the firm. She has more than 20 years of experience representing clients in a wide variety of transactional matters, including asset and stock acquisitions and sales, engineering, procurement, construction and construction-related contracts (for both onshore and offshore energy products), various product supply agreements and commercial leases. She has worked on transactions, construction contracts, and interconnection agreements for industrial mega-projects in Louisiana and in the Gulf of Mexico. Read more about Linda Perez Clark.

Cynthia J. Cole

Special Counsel Baker Botts

Ms. Cole is currently Special Counsel at Baker Botts in Palo Alto, California. In 2017, Ms. Cole left her role as General Counsel (prior interim CEO) to build the technology and commercial transactions practice at Baker Botts’ Silicon Valley office.  She returned to private practice after 13 years in house, three times General Counsel and once CEO. She spent almost 8 years of her legal career in Paris, France. She counsels clients on technology transactions and deals, big data, data privacy, data sharing and IP licensing, often creating bespoke agreements in novel technology fields. She has led the firm’s initiative in GDPR and data protection counseling for US Companies. Ms. Cole is certified as an Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/E) by the International Association of Privacy Professionals. Read more about Cynthia J. Cole.

Connie R. Collingsworth

Chief Business Operations Officer and member of the Executive Leadership Team Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Ms. Collingsworth is the Chief Business Operations Officer and a member of the Executive Leadership Team of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the world’s largest foundation with over $50 billion in assets.  In such role, she is responsible for leading a significant portion of the foundation’s operations, including Information Technology, Legal, Global Security, and overall business design and change management, as well as driving overall operational efficiency and effectiveness in support of the foundation’s mission. Ms. Collingsworth is a board member and Chair of the Governance & Nominating Committee of Banner Corporation. Ms. Collingsworth is also a board member and Chair of the Compensation Committee of Premera Blue Cross, one of the largest health plans in the Pacific Northwest.  Read more about Connie Collingsworth.


Patricia Diaz Dennis

Director Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs (1992-93)

Ms. Dennis serves as a director on three public company boards:  Amalgamated Bank, U.S. Steel and Entravision Communications. She retired in April 2017 as the longest-serving board member of Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company, having joined in 1995.  Other past board service includes Telemundo and CarrAmerica. Ms. Dennis serves on several not-for-profit boards, including NHP Foundation (since 2003) which preserves and builds affordable multi-family housing for low and moderate income families and seniors.  She Chairs the Sanctions Panel for The Global Fund (since 2013) whose mission is to end tuberculosis, AIDS and Malaria world-wide.  She is Chair-Elect of the Board of Trustees of the World Affairs Council of San Antonio and serves on the LBJ Family Wealth Advisors Advisory Board (since 2010).  She became the first Latina Board Chair of Girl Scouts of the USA in 2005 and served on its board for nine years. Read more about Patricia Diaz Dennis.

Marie Donoghue

Vice President Global Sports Video Amazon

Ms. Donoghue is responsible for Amazon’s global sports content business. In her role, Ms. Donoghue is responsible for Amazon’s sports strategy, enabling customers to access live and on demand sports content, on hundreds of devices, in over 200 countries and territories.  Prior to joining Amazon, she served as Executive Vice President, Global Business and Content Strategy at ESPN, leading the ongoing development and implementation of ESPN’s enterprise-wide business and content strategy. She also headed ESPN’s Business Affairs, Business Development and Partnership groups (including gaming partnerships), identifying, evaluating and creating new business opportunities, and acquiring and renewing program rights agreements, including multibillion dollar deals with the NFL, NBA and MLB. Ms. Donoghue oversaw all digital deal making for ESPN since 2003, including ESPN’s relationship with BAMTech, the home of ESPN’s first direct-to-consumer (OTT) streaming platform.  Read more about Marie Donoghue.

Stacey Doré

Senior Vice President and General Counsel Hunt Utility Services, LLC and InfraREIT, Inc.

Ms. Doré is Senior Vice President and General Counsel of Hunt Utility Services, LLC (HUS) and InfraREIT, Inc., based in Dallas, Texas, where she leads the legal and regulatory affairs groups. Prior to joining HUS and InfraREIT in late 2016, Ms. Doré spent eight years at Energy Future Holdings Corp. (EFH), most recently serving as executive vice president and general counsel.  At EFH, Ms. Doré led a team of more than 50 professionals who provided advice on legal, regulatory and corporate governance matters.  Ms. Doré supervised the corporate secretary’s office; led the company’s legal and compliance team; participated in setting the strategic direction for the company; and, as Co-Chief Restructuring Officer, managed all aspects of the largest Chapter 11 restructuring ever filed in Delaware as the companies worked out a plan to restructure more than $40 billion in debt. Read more about Stacey Doré.

Janice Reals Ellig

Chief Executive Officer Ellig Group

As the head of the Ellig Group, Ms. Ellig is dedicated to increasing the placement of women and diverse candidates on corporate boards and in C-suites by 2025. Ms. Ellig joined the legacy firm in 2000 and became Co-Chief Executive Officer in its transition to Chadick Ellig in 2007; she assumed sole ownership of the company as the Ellig Group in 2017 with a new focus on Reimagining Search. Prior to her career in executive search, Ms. Ellig spent 20 years in corporate America at Pfizer, Citi and Ambac Financial Group, an IPO from Citibank, where she was responsible for Marketing, Human Resources, and Administration. A tirelessly active member of the industry and champion of her causes, Ms. Ellig is Founder of the Women’s Forum of New York’s Corporate Board Initiative and its signature event, Breakfast of Corporate Champions. Since 2011, Ms. Ellig continues to spearhead this event to honor companies committed to board diversity and to encourage CEOs to sponsor board-ready women for the Women’s Forum database. Read more about Janice Ellig.

JoAnne A. Epps

Executive Vice President and Provost Temple University

A member of the faculty of Temple Law School since 1985, Ms. Epps served as Dean of Temple Law School from 2008-2016.  In July, she stepped down as Dean to assume the role of Executive Vice President and Provost of Temple University.  She is the author and co-author of several books and articles on Evidence and Trial Advocacy. Commemorating Black History Month, in February 2015 U.S. Senator Robert P. Casey, Jr. honored Ms. Epps at the U.S. Senate.  From March 2015 until January 2017, Ms. Epps was the chair of a Police Community Oversight Board created by Mayor Michael Nutter. In June 2017, Ms. Epps was honored by The Legal Intelligencer as a Distinguished Leader in her field.  In May 2017, Ms. Epps received the Consular Award on Italian National Day by the Consulate General of Italy and was also the recipient of the Inaugural JoAnne Epps Award by the Barristers’ Association of Philadelphia. Read more about JoAnne Epps.

Brigadier General Susan Escallier

Assistant Judge Advocate General Military Law and Operations U.S. Army

Brigadier General Escallier is a career Army officer in the Judge Advocate General’s Corps. She has decades of experience practicing law in deployed settings, advising commanders, coalition partners, host nation governments, and working in conjunction with international organizations and interagency partners.

She currently serves as the Assistant Judge Advocate General for Military Law and Operations. Her focus is the development of strategic legal policy for the US Army. Read more about Brigadier General Susan Escallier.

Suzanne Rich Folsom

Independent Board Member; and General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer & SVP - Government Affairs U.S. Steel Corporation (2014-2017)

Ms. Folsom is an accomplished independent board member and results-oriented C-Suite leader.  She has been a change agent and catalyst for organizational growth at multiple companies and organizations.  Most recently, she served as the General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer & SVP – Government Affairs at U.S. Steel, where she had a transformational leadership role.  Previously she played key roles at ACADEMI (EVP, General Counsel, and Chief Compliance Officer), AIG (Deputy GC and Chief Regulatory & Compliance Officer), and the World Bank (Counselor to the President and Director of the Department of Institutional Integrity).  Ms. Folsom’s career includes serving as: the Private Secretary to H.M. Queen Noor of Jordan; First Family Liaison to the Presidential Inaugural Committee; Special Assistant to the First Lady; Advisor to the US Delegation to the U.N. World Women’s Conference in Kenya; Chief of Staff to the Co-Chair of a national political party; and she practiced law with two global law firms. Read more about Suzanne Folsom.

Margaret M. Foran

Chief Governance Officer, Senior Vice President, and Corporate Secretary Prudential Financial, Inc.

Ms. Foran is Chief Governance Officer, Senior Vice President and Corporate Secretary of Prudential Financial, Inc. Her role at Prudential also includes oversight of the Company’s Shareholder Services and Sustainability divisions. She has been a corporate governance leader throughout her career at Sara Lee Corporation, Pfizer, Inc. and J.P. Morgan & Co., Inc. Ms. Foran is a director on the board of Occidental Petroleum Corporation and Chairperson of its Executive Compensation Committee. She is also a member of its Corporate Governance, Nominating and Social Responsibility Committee. She previously served on the Board of Directors of The MONY Group Inc. and MONY Life Insurance Company. Her proactive shareholder outreach and thought leadership on key governance issues has earned her global recognition as a leader in corporate governance.  Read more about Margaret M. Foran.

Hilda C. Galvan

Partner-in-Charge Dallas Jones Day

Ms. Galvan is the Partner-in-Charge at the Jones Day Dallas office. For more than 20 years, Ms. Galvan, a nationally recognized trial lawyer who focuses on complex intellectual property litigation, has represented plaintiffs and defendants in federal and state courts across the country. She has served as lead counsel for IBM, Texas Instruments, and Essilor in the enforcement of their patent portfolios and in defending against allegations of infringement. In 2016, Ms. Galvan was named a global IP leader by World IP Review. She has led cross-border litigation matters involving courts in Europe, Asia, Texas, and the ITC. IAM magazine identified Ms. Galvan as a "powerhouse litigator" and lauded her "extensive experience in big-ticket patent litigation." Ms. Galvan has litigated more than 100 patent cases, with 50+ in the Eastern District of Texas. She recently chaired the board of the Dallas Regional Chamber, serves on the board of trustees of The University of Texas Law School Foundation, and on the boards of Parkland Hospital Foundation, Dallas Women’s Foundation, and the Dallas Hispanic Law Foundation. She was named one of “The Most Powerful Business Leaders” in Dallas-Fort Worth” by D CEO.

Lisa Atlas Genecov

Partner & Health Care Practice National Co-Chair Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP

Ms. Genecov is the national co-chair of Katten Muchin Rosenman's Health Care practice, concentrating on the regulatory, business, corporate, governance, compliance, mergers and acquisitions, and transactional aspects of health care law, with a particular focus in the private equity space. With over 30 years of experience, she advises clients on transaction structures, implementation matters, compliance obligations and strategic opportunities under the Affordable Care Act and related health care laws and regulations. She also regularly advises the boards of health care entities on governance issues. Read more about Lisa Atlas Genecov.

Deborah R. Gilg

Neutral Arbitrator Financial Regulatory Authority

Commissioner Nebraska Crime Commission

U.S. Attorney District of Nebraska (2009-2017)

Ms. Gilg is the former United States Attorney for Nebraska. She was appointed by President Barack Obama and served from 2009-2017. Currently, she serves on the Financial Regulatory Authority (FINRA) panel of neutral arbitrators and as a Commissioner on the Nebraska Crime Commission. Ms. Gilg is also an adjunct law professor at the University of Nebraska College of Law.  In 2018, Ms. Gilg founded the company, Fearless, Fierce and Forward,L.L.C.  and in that capacity she develops and presents various women empowerment and leadership seminars nationwide. Ms. Gilg has practiced law privately and was an elected county attorney for the majority of her 40 + years of being an attorney. Read more about Deborah R. Gilg.

Leslie A. Goldman

Managing Director, In-House Practice Group Major, Lindsey & Africa

Ms. Goldman, a Managing Director with Major, Lindsey & Africa’s In-House Practice Group, is retained by companies to recruit chief legal officers, chief compliance officers, deputy GCs and other senior in-house attorneys. In addition, she collaborates with her colleagues in the global executive search firm Allegis Partners, an affiliate of Major, Lindsey within the Allegis Group family of talent management companies, to identify high potential attorneys who have a desire for board service. Prior to joining Major, Lindsey & Africa, Ms. Goldman spent almost 10 years as Vice President and General Counsel for (i) Fisher HealthCare, the largest provider of diagnostic products to the U.S. clinical market; (ii) Athena Diagnostics, a provider of proprietary genetic testing; and (iii) Fisher Chemicals, a global chemical manufacturer and packager. Read more about Leslie Goldman.

Marcy Hogan Greer

Appellate Counsel Alexander Dubose & Jefferson LLP

Ms. Greer is recognized for her work in federal and state trial and appellate courts throughout the country. Her practice consistently includes class action and mass tort cases, including federal and state multidistrict litigation. This experience contributed to her recognition in in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business in Appellate Litigation, accreditation in Best Lawyers in America in Appellate, Bet-the-Company, and Commercial Litigation, and selection as the “Lawyer of the Year” in 2016 and 2012 for Austin Appellate Practice and 2015 for Austin Bet-the Company Litigation. Ms. Greer has also been recognized as a Texas Super Lawyer for her appellate work since its inaugural list and has been repeatedly listed in the Top 100 Texas Lawyers, Top 50 Central Texas Lawyers, and Top 50 Women Lawyers recognized by that publication. Read more about Marcy Hogan Greer.

Juanita Harris

Assistant Vice President and Senior Legal Counsel to Human Resources AT&T, Inc.

With a legal career spanning over 20 years, Ms. Harris is a veteran corporate attorney with in depth experience fusing legal mandates with visionary business insights. She currently serves as Assistant Vice President and Senior Legal Counsel to Human Resources at AT&T, Inc. at its global headquarters in Dallas, Texas. As an emotionally intelligent strategic thinker, Ms. Harris provides advice and counsel on issues related to managing human capital and helps drive business growth while mitigating risk associated with a diverse workforce of more than 250,000 domestic and international employees. Ms. Harris previously managed labor arbitrations and litigation, while also representing AT&T before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), and the Department of Labor. Read more about Juanita Harris.

Beth P. Hecht

Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary Xeris Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: XERS)

Beth Hecht is the Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of Xeris Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: XERS) a publicly traded specialty pharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing injectable products.  As Xeris’ chief legal officer, she leads the legal, compliance, security and corporate secretarial functions and is a member of the Company’s seven-person Executive Leadership Team.  Before joining Xeris Pharmaceuticals, Ms. Hecht served as Managing Director and Chief Administrative and Legal Officer of Auven Therapeutics, a private equity life science firm.  Ms. Hecht is a graduate of Amherst College and Harvard Law School and started her career as an attorney specializing in intellectual property and corporate transactions at Willkie Farr & Gallagher (NY) and then Kirkland & Ellis (NY).  Read more about Beth Hecht.

Becca Heller

Executive Director and Co-founder International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP)

Ms. Heller is the Executive Director and co-founder of IRAP. She has received numerous awards in recognition of her work with IRAP, including a MacArthur Fellowship, the Charles Bronfman Prize, the American Constitutional Society David Carliner Public Interest Award, a Skadden Fellowship, a Draper Richards Kaplan Fellowship, an Echoing Green Fellowship, a Gruber Human Rights Fellowship, the South Asian Bar Association of Connecticut Annual Community Service Award and a Dartmouth College Martin Luther King Jr. Emerging Leader in Social Justice Award. She was also named Foreign Policy’s Citizen Diplomat of the Year, Politico’s Women Rule Summit Ambassador, one of the Christian Science Monitor’s “30 under 30” change makers, and is a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Read more about Becca Heller.

Sarah Hlavinka

Senior Vice President, General Counsel, and Secretary Itron, Inc.

Ms. Hlavinka is a senior advisor and business executive with broad based experience and legal background in the technology, service, manufacturing, and healthcare industries. Ms. Hlavinka currently serves as the Senior VicePresident, General Counsel ,and Secretary for Itron, Inc., a $2.3 billion NASDAQ company.  Itron enables utilities and cities to safely, securely and reliably deliver critical infrastructure services in more than 100 countries worldwide. Prior to her work at Itron, Ms. Hlavinka served in a number of C-Suite Executive legal roles in multi-billion dollar international companies, including XeroxCorporation, ABM Industries, Inc. and Fisher Scientific International.  She began her career as an associate at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld. Read more about Sarah Hlavinka.

Vicki A. Hollub

President and Chief Executive Officer Occidental Petroleum Corporation

Vicki Hollub is President and Chief Executive Officer of Occidental Petroleum. She has been a member of Occidental’s Board of Directors since 2015. During her 35-year career with Occidental, Ms. Hollub has held a variety of management and technical positions with responsibilities on three continents, including roles in the United States, Russia, Venezuela and Ecuador. Most recently, she served as Occidental’s President and Chief Operating Officer, overseeing the company’s oil and gas, chemical and midstream operations.  Read more about Vicki Hollub.

Kimberly Leach Johnson

Firm Chair Quarles & Brady

Ms. Johnson is firm chair of Quarles & Brady and presides over the Executive Committee. As a trusts & estates attorney, she has been practicing for more than 30 years, delivering comprehensive estate planning to individuals and institutions. Ms. Johnson is a five-time FIVE STAR: Best in Client Satisfaction Wealth Manager, a Top 50 Women Florida Super Lawyer®, and recipient of a FCSW Florida Achievement. She is also a member of the Best Lawyers Advisory Board. Read more about Kim Johnson.

Claudia Kalb

Bestselling Author Independent Journalist

Ms. Kalb is a New York Times bestselling author and independent journalist specializing in medicine, science and human behavior. A former senior writer for Newsweek magazine, her work has also appeared in Scientific American, Smithsonian and, most recently, National Geographic. Her stories for National Geographic delve into the subject of genius through the lens of science, biography, history and culture. In her books, Ms. Kalb is investigating the attributes of individuals who have soared to great heights throughout history. Her first book, Andy Warhol was a Hoarder: Inside the Minds of History’s Great Personalities, explores the challenges and triumphs of 12 icons, including Charles Darwin, Albert Einstein and Marilyn Monroe. She is currently at work on her second book, which focuses on moments of discovery and life journeys. Read more about Claudia Kalb.

Arleas Upton Kea

Chief Operating Officer and Deputy to the Chairman Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation

Ms. Kea is the Chief Operating Officer and Deputy to the Chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.  A native Texan, she earned her Juris Doctor degree from the University of Texas Law School in 1982 and her Bachelor of Arts Degree with honors in 1979.  She also holds certificates from the program of Instruction for Lawyers at Harvard Law School and the Program for Senior Leaders in Government at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. Read more about Arleas Upton Kea.

Denise Keane

Chair and Director D. Keane LLC

Ms. Keane is the principal of D. Keane LLC, and is a public speaker and advisor on risk, litigation and regulatory management, governance, and a broad range of diversity and leadership topics. Until July 2017, she was Executive Vice President and General Counsel for Altria Group, Inc., where she led the law, corporate secretary, and brand integrity departments. Previously she served as Senior Vice President and General Counsel for Philip Morris USA; and as Senior Vice President for Philip Morris Companies, Inc., with worldwide responsibility for the strategic management of regulatory issues for global tobacco, beer and food businesses. Ms. Keane served on the board of the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity and the board of the Virginia Opera. She currently serves on the board of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Foundation where she is Chair of the Governance and Audit Committee; and is the Chair of DirectWomen.

Stasia Kelly

US Managing Partner DLA Piper

Ms. Kelly, US Managing Partner at DLA Piper, has extensive experience as both outside counsel and as a general counsel and brings these perspectives to her practice, working closely with boards of directors, general counsel and in-house legal teams, helping clients design and implement effective governance and compliance programs. Ms. Kelly also advises boards and executives on crisis management.  Ms. Kelly co-chairs the Global Governance and Compliance practice.  She is also a member of the firm’s Global Board and Executive Committee.  Firmly committed to helping advance women at DLA Piper, Ms. Kelly is a mentor to a number of the women lawyers and is on the leadership committee of the firm's Leadership Alliance for Women (LAW), which is committed to the hiring, development and advancement of women lawyers.  Read more about Stasia Kelly.

Nancy Kestenbaum

Partner Covington & Burling

Co-Chair Covington & Burling White Collar Defense and Investigations Practice Group

Ms. Kestenbaum is a partner in the New York office of Covington & Burling and is Co-Chair of Covington's White Collar Defense and Investigations Practice Group.  Ms. Kestenbaum previously served as a member of Covington’s Management Committee, which governs the firm.  Earlier in her career, Ms. Kestenbaum served for nearly ten years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York, where she held various supervisory positions.  Over the past fifteen years while at Covington, Ms. Kestenbaum has represented many companies, individuals and boards in a wide variety of criminal and civil enforcement investigations and internal investigations.  Read more about Nancy Kestenbaum.

Kim Koopersmith

Chairperson Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP

Ms. Koopersmith, chairperson of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, guides the firm’s strategic direction, heads the firm’s management committee and ensures the firm's continued commitment to client service, diversity, pro bono work and attorney excellence. She has played a key role in enhancing the firm’s overall performance, earning recognition for her innovative and transformative approach to law firm leadership.

Prior to her role in management, Ms. Koopersmith was a partner in the firm’s litigation practice, handling complex commercial litigation and serving as relationship partner to several of the firm’s largest clients. Read more about Kim Koopersmith.

Sophie L’Hélias

Founder and President LeaderXXchange

A former M&A attorney in New York and Paris, Ms. L’Hélias is an international corporate governance expert with extensive experience in shareholder activism and investor campaigns in Europe, the United States and Canada.

Ms. L’Hélias is an international corporate governance expert with extensive experience in shareholder activism and investor campaigns in Europe, the United States and Canada. She founded LeaderXXchange, a change-driven organization that advises and promotes diversity and sustainability in governance, leadership, and investment strategies. LeaderXXchange launched The Gender Diversity Exchange, an easy-to-use tool that shares usable information on gender leadership diversity within companies around the world and lets users determine whether companies’ intentions match their measurable outcomes. Read more about Sophie L’Hélias.

Nancy Laben

Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Officer Booz Allen Hamilton

Ms. Laben is the Chief Legal Officer, Corporate Secretary and ExecutiveVice President of Booz Allen Hamilton. She leads the firm’s Legal Department and is responsible for the company’s legal work including corporate governance, securities, government contracts, employment law, cyber law, intellectual property, commercial transactions, mergers & acquisitions and corporate investigations.

She is a member of Booz Allen’s Leadership Team and also has oversight for the firm’s Marketing and Communications, Media Relations, GovernmentRelations, Ethics & Compliance and Social Impact. Ms. Laben is based at the firm’s Washington, D.C. office.

Jean Lee

President and CEO Minority Corporate Counsel Association

Ms. Lee is the President and CEO of the Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA), a national organization focused on hiring, promoting and retaining women and diverse attorneys by providing cutting-edge research, best practices, training and training.

Prior to joining MCCA, Ms. Lee served as Vice President and Assistant General Counsel at JP Morgan Chase & Co. where she worked on consumer litigation and regulatory matters.  Before joining JP Morgan Chase & Co. in 2011, Ms. Lee worked on litigation matters at a boutique litigation firm in New York City and started her career as a law clerk to the Honorable John J. Hughes, United States Magistrate Judge (retired), in the District of New Jersey. Read more about Jean Lee.

Mara Liasson

National Political Correspondent NPR

Ms. Liasson is the national political correspondent for NPR. Her reports can be heard regularly on NPR's award-winning newsmagazines Morning Edition and All Things Considered.  Ms. Liasson provides extensive coverage of politics and policy from Washington, DC — focusing on the White House and Congress — and also reports on political trends beyond the Beltway. Each election year, Ms. Liasson provides key coverage of the candidates and issues in both presidential and congressional races. During her tenure she has covered six presidential elections — in 1992, 1996, 2000, 2004, 2008, and 2012. Read more about Mara Liasson.

Roberta (“Bobbi”) Liebenberg

Partner Fine, Kaplan and Black

Ms. Liebenberg, a partner at Fine, Kaplan and Black in Philadelphia, focuses her practice on antitrust matters and complex commercial litigation.  She has defended Southwest Airlines and other major companies in antitrust cases, and has also been appointed by courts to represent plaintiff classes in many class actions. Ms. Liebenberg is Co-Chair of the ABA Presidential Initiative on Achieving Long-Term Careers for Women in Law. She was Chair of DirectWomen, whose mission is to increase the representation of women attorneys on corporate boards.  She twice served as Chair of the ABA Commission on Women in the Profession; was Chair of the ABA Gender Equity Task Force; Chair of the Pennsylvania Bar Association's Commission on Women in the Profession; Chair of the Philadelphia Bar Association Women in the Profession Committee; and President of the Metropolitan Richmond Women's Bar Association. Read more about Roberta Liebenberg.

Kimberly S. Lubel

CEO, Chairman of the Board, Director and President CST Brands, Inc. (2013-2017)

Ms. Lubel is the former Chairman and CEO of CST Brands, Inc., a Fortune 250 North American convenience and fuel retailer with over 14,000 employees that was acquired by Circle K in June 2017. Ms. Lubel serves on the boards of directors of WPX Energy, Inc., an NYSE-traded oil and gas company, and PBF Energy, Inc., an NYSE-traded petroleum refining company. Prior to her role at CST Brands, Ms. Lubel spent over 15 years with Valero Energy Corporation, including six years as Valero’s Executive Vice President and General Counsel. Among her professional recognitions, Ms. Lubel has twice been named to Fortune’s 50 Most Powerful Women list (2013 & 2015) and was named Executive Leader of the Year in 2014 by the San Antonio Business Journal. She recently was appointed to the Texas Law Foundation Board.

Justice Rebeca C. Martinez

Justice Texas Fourth Court of Appeals

Justice Martinez is a former law clerk for both a federal and a state appellate judge, and for almost twenty years worked in private practice with two prestigious law firms before starting her own litigation practice until her election to the Texas Fourth Court of Appeals in 2012. A member of many professional organizations throughout the years, Justice Martinez has been recognized for her out standing service to the legal profession and to the public, beginning with her service as a member of the TYLA Board so many years ago, to her most recent service on the Board of the National Association of Women Judges.  She currently lives in San Antonio, Texas with her husband David and family. Read more about Justice Martinez.

Michele Coleman Mayes

Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary The New York Public Library

Ms. Mayes is Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary for the New York Public Library (NYPL).  Ms. Mayes joined NYPL in August 2012 after serving as Executive Vice President and General Counsel for Allstate Insurance Company from 2007 to 2012.  She served as a Senior Vice President and the General Counsel of Pitney Bowes Inc. from 2003 to 2007 and in several legal capacities at Colgate-Palmolive from 1992 to 2003.  In 1982, Ms. Mayes entered the corporate sector as managing attorney of Burroughs Corporation.  After Burroughs and Sperry Corporation merged, creating Unisys Corporation, she was appointed Staff Vice President and Associate General Counsel for Worldwide Litigation. Read more about Michele Coleman Mayes.

Jami Wintz McKeon

Chair Morgan Lewis

Ms. McKeon is the Chair of Morgan Lewis, the largest law firm in the world led by a woman, and was recently reelected by the firm partnership to serve a second five-year term. Since becoming Chair in 2014, Ms. McKeon has transformed Morgan Lewis into an elite international powerhouse through carefully targeted growth. As a result of  Ms. McKeon’s strategic direction, Morgan Lewis is now one of the principal global providers of legal services, with a team of over 2,200 lawyers, patent agents, and other specialists in 30 offices assisting clients throughout the United States, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East.

Ms. McKeon started her legal career at Morgan Lewis in 1981 and has held many different management positions including leading the firm’s litigation practice prior to assuming the role of Chair.  Read more about Jami McKeon.

Adrienne Monley

Head of Investment Stewardship - Europe Vanguard

Ms. Monley has recently been named Head of Investment Stewardship for Vanguard in Europe. Based in London, UK, she leads a team responsible for direct engagement with boards and executives, corporate governance research and thought leadership, and proxy voting at European portfolio companies on behalf of Vanguard’s global fund line-up.
Prior roles included leadership on Vanguard’s US-based Investment Stewardship team and acting as chief of staff to Vanguard’s global General Counsel; she began her career in human capital consulting before joining Vanguard in 2012. Ms. Monley earned a BA in English from the University of Rochester and holds an MBA from the Simmons School of Management.

Julie Cohen Norris

Senior Client Partner, Board & CEO and Legal Services Practices Korn Ferry

Ms. Norris is a Senior Client Partner in the Boston Office and a member of the Board & CEO and Legal Services Practices. Ms. Norris specializes in the recruitment and leadership development of board directors, general counsels, and other C-suite executives.

Prior to joining Korn Ferry, Ms. Norris was a Partner with another global search firm in their Board and Technology Practices. Since 2005, she has worked closely with boards and the C-suite to recruit more than 125 board directors, representing the next generation of leaders across a wide range of industries and geographies. Ms. Norris has also extensively recruited general counsels to Fortune 500, mid-cap, and start-up companies across the financial services, life sciences, consumer, and industrial sectors. Read more about Julie Norris.

Carey A. O’Connor

Jobs for the Future

Ms. O'Connor is an experienced senior business executive most recently serving on the executive team of Flowserve Corporation, a S&P 500 global manufacturer of engineered flow control products located in 55 countries. As Flowserve’s Chief Legal Officer, Ms. O'Connor led a team of 86 professionals in 16 countries with responsibility for legal, compliance, investigations, ethics, facilities and security. She served as CLO and on the executive team for almost six years and as Corporate Secretary for seven years.

In her addition to her corporate leadership experience, Ms. O'Connor is actively involved in her community. She is Chair and co-founder of the award-winning Dallas-Fort Worth Regional Workforce Leadership Council, which serves 16 counties and underserved populations of 7M+ in obtaining necessary job skills. She is also an active member of the Dallas Assembly and a graduate of Leadership Dallas. Read more about Carey A. O'Connor.

Angela Onwuachi-Willig

Dean and Professor Boston University School of Law

Ms. Onwuachi-Willig is Dean and Professor of Law at Boston University School of Law. Previously, she served as Chancellor’s Professor of Law at the University of California-Berkeley School of Law, the Charles and Marion Kierscht Professor of Law at the University of Iowa College of Law, and Assistant Professor of Law at the University of California, Davis. She is a graduate of Grinnell College (B.A.), the University of Michigan Law School (J.D.), and Yale University (Ph.D. in Sociology and African American Studies).

Dean Onwuachi-Willig is a leading scholar of law and inequality. Her research centers on race, gender, and class inequalities; employment discrimination; affirmative action; and family law. She is author of According to Our Hearts: Rhinelander v. Rhinelander and the Law of the Multiracial Family (Yale 2013). Read more about Angela Onwuachi-Willig.

Hari M. Osofsky

Dean and Distinguished Professor of Law Penn State Law; Dean, Penn State School of International Affairs

Ms. Osofsky is Dean of Penn State Law and the Penn State School of International Affairs and Distinguished Professor of Law, Professor of International Affairs, and Professor of Geography. As dean, she is deeply committed to collaboratively building legal and international affairs education for a changing society, and is leading initiatives in mentoring, technology, and interdisciplinary and international partnerships. She also has been very involved nationally in supporting more women and people of color to consider law school and university leadership.

Dean Osofsky’s over 50 publications focus on improving governance and addressing injustice in energy and climate change regulation. Her scholarship includes books with Cambridge University Press on climate change litigation, textbooks on both energy and climate change law, and articles in leading law and geography journals. Read more about Hari M. Osofsky.

The Hon. Tonya Parker

Judge for the 116th Civil District Court Dallas County, Texas

Nearly a year into her first term as an elected official, Judge Parker made national headlines. Not for the way she cleared-out scores of dated cases in the severely backlogged court she inherited. Not for her award-winning service to the legal community.  Not for breaking barriers as one of the few, at that time, African-American judges or female judges or gay judges.  Instead, she was labeled “The Gay Judge” and splashed across social media and the television news for declining to exercise her privilege to officiate marriage ceremonies until all couples could wed, and later compared to Kentucky Clerk Kim Davis. In October 2016 she took the TEDx Turtle Creek Women stage to talk about the lessons she learned from being so prominently labeled. Judge Parker will reprise her Talk at the 2019 Women’s Power Summit on Law and Leadership. Read more about the Hon. Tonya Parker.

Marla S. Persky

CEO and President WOMN LLC

Ms. Persky is CEO and President of WOMN LLC, a company dedicated to helping women succeed in the business of law by increasing their knowledge of and acuity with financial drivers, client development, and leadership. Throughout her professional life, Ms. Persky has had the opportunity to understand and practice business principles that lead to personal and company success.

Ms. Persky retired in 2013 as Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary for Boehringer Ingelheim Inc., where she oversaw a department of over 70 individuals. She also was a member of Boehringer’sexecutive management team and a director of the company and several of its subsidiaries. Read more about Marla S. Persky.

Karen A. Popp

Partner and Global Co-Leader Investigations and Compliance Sidley Austin

Ms. Popp is the Global Co-Leader of Sidley Austin’s Investigations and Compliance group.  She has an extensive practice representing companies and individuals in high-profile matters with legal, political and public relations components.  She has been retained in a wide-range of crisis management matters and has led confidential worldwide internal investigations and defended corporations and individuals in investigations in more than 70 countries relating to alleged fraud, corruption, ethical wrongdoing and Me Too claims.  Her clients range from major corporations, financial institutions and non-profit organizations, to senior business executives, government officials, including a U.S. President Cabinet member, and well-known sports figures. Read more about Karen Popp.


Lynn Povich

Award-Winning Journalist Author of The Good Girls Revolt

Ms. Povich is an award-winning journalist who has spent more than 40 years in the news business. After graduating from Vassar College, she began her career as a secretary in the Paris Bureau of Newsweek magazine, rising to become a reporter and writer in New York. In 1970, she was one of 46 women who filed sex discrimination charges against the magazine, the first women in the media to sue. Five years later, she was appointed the first woman Senior Editor in Newsweek’s history.

Ms. Povich's book about that landmark lawsuit, THE GOOD GIRLS REVOLT, was published in 2010 by PublicAffairs and inspired an original series on Amazon Prime in 2016. Read more about Lynn Povich.

Yvonne K. Puig

Chief Integration Partner, Life Sciences and Healthcare Norton Rose Fulbright

Ms. Puig has a substantial commercial litigation practice in both state and federal courts. She represents large health systems, medical schools, institutional health care providers, for profit educational companies, and managed care organizations across the US.

A partner in Norton Rose Fulbright's Austin office, Ms. Puig's practice involves commercial and health care litigation, antitrust, regulatory and compliance advice, crisis and risk management, administrative law, and products liability. Read more about Yvonne K. Puig

Lauren Stiller Rikleen

Founder Rikleen Institute for Strategic Leadership

Ms. Rikleen pursued her commitment to helping leaders develop respectful, diverse and inclusive workplaces by creating the Rikleen Institute for Strategic Leadership in 2011. After more than two decades as a law firm partner focused on resolving environmental problems and serving as a mediator, Ms. Rikleen turned her problem-solving skills towards creating a better workplace environment.

Ms. Rikleen has become a nationally recognized expert and sought-after speaker, consultant, and trainer on a range of workplace culture issues including strengthening multi-generational teams, women's leadership and advancement, minimizing the impacts of unconscious bias, and eliminating sexual harassment and workplace misconduct. Read more about Lauren Stiller Rikleen.

Sandra Phillips Rogers

Group Vice President, Chief Legal Officer, General Counsel, Corporate Secretary, and Chief Diversity Officer Toyota Motor North America, Inc.

Ms. Rogers oversees legal services for TMNA and representation of the company and its affiliates. Ms. Rogers helps navigate Toyota’s significant business and legal challenges, while supporting its expansion as a global mobility company.  She is an advisor to the TMNA Executive Committee and a member of Toyota’s global leadership team.

Ms. Rogers is a founding member of the Center for Women in Law at The University of Texas School of Law and in 2018, she received the Outstanding Alumna Award from the school, her alma mater.  Her recognitions include the Legacy Award from the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law, the Burton Foundation Legend in Law Award, D CEO’s “GC Impact Player of the Year” (2017), and Black Enterprise’s“75 Most Powerful Women in Business” (2017) and “300 Most Powerful Executives in Corporate America” (2018).  Read more about Sandra Phillips Rogers.

Teresa Wynn Roseborough

Executive Vice President, General Counsel & Corporate Secretary The Home Depot

Ms. Roseborough is responsible for The Home Depot’s legal functions, government relations, corporate communications and external affairs. In addition, as corporate secretary, Ms. Roseborough serves as a liaison between the board of directors and the company and is responsible for all corporate governance matters.

Ms. Roseborough and the legal team are responsible for securities, litigation, employment, mergers and acquisitions, real estate, store operations, risk management and intellectual property. She also leads the government relations team as they address legislative issues that impact the business environment, the retail industry and our associates. In her corporate communications and external affairs role, Ms. Roseborough leads the company’s internal and external communications, The Home Depot Foundation, The Homer Fund, branded merchandise and the events team. Read more about Teresa Wynn Roseborough.

Stephanie A. Scharf

Founding Partner Scharf Banks Marmor LLC

Ms. Scharf represents corporate clients on a wide range of complex matters including commercial disputes, insurance coverage for corporate policyholders, class action, defense, product liability defense, environmental torts and employment defense. In three decades of representing clients in federal and state courts, Ms. Scharf has tried civil and criminal jury and bench trials, has managed the pre-trial, trial and appellate phases of litigation, and has overseen the resolution of multiple commercial disputes and complex tort actions.  Ms. Scharf frequently counsels companies on ways to avoid litigation and mitigate risks at the product or enterprise level. Ms. Scharf and the Firm were profiled for the "unique quality of their work"  by Chicago Lawyer  in the cover article, "Work at a Very High Level." Read more about Stephanie Scharf.

Shannon B. Schmoyer

Partner Schmoyer Reinhard LLP

Ms. Schmoyer is a founding partner in the law firm of Schmoyer Reinhard LLP.  Prior to forming Schmoyer Reinhard, Ms. Schmoyer was a partner at the international law firm of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, where she practiced in the Dallas and San Antonio offices and served as the head of Akin Gump’s San Antonio labor and employment law section. Ms. Schmoyer is Board Certified in Labor and Employment Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.  She has over 27 years of experience representing employers in employment litigation, including class actions and labor arbitration. In addition to being an experienced trial lawyer, she counsels employers on all aspects of labor and employment law, advises management on strategic and complex employment decisions, and conducts training programs for managers and supervisors on various employment-related topics. Read more about Shannon B. Schmoyer.

Patricia A. Shiu

Legal and Policy Consultant on Workplace Diversity and Inclusion

Ms. Shiu is a consultant on diversity and inclusion policies that reflect an organization’s mission, culture and brand. Appointed by President Barack Obama, Ms. Shiu served as the Director of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) at the Department of Labor (DOL) in Washington, DC from 2009-2016. OFCCP enforces laws that prohibit workplace discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability and veteran status. OFCCP regulates the federal contractor community that employs approximately 20% of the American workforce. Read more about Patricia A. Shiu.

Katharine Silbaugh

Professor of Law and Law Alumni Scholar Boston University School of Law

Ms. Silbaugh is Professor of Law and Law Alumni Scholar at Boston University School of Law. Her research addresses the complex relationship between families and institutions such as employers and schools; the economic and social value of work done within households and families; the legal framework supporting care work; and gender and power within the school, work, and family contexts. Her publications about the relationship between institutions and family address a range of legal systems from family and employment law to urban planning and education law. She has intervened in legal initiatives including marriage equality litigation and anti-bullying law and policy. Ms. Silbaugh has co-authored two books and authored over 35 scholarly articles and book chapters. Read more about Katharine Silbaugh.

Heather Smith

Principal, Global Board & CEO Practice DHR International

As a member of the Board & CEO Practice at DHR International, Ms. Smith works with clients to successfully place C-level executives and board directors. Ms. Smith brings knowledge of boards and boardroom risk derived from her career experience in the insurance industry to DHR. As Vice President with Coregis Insurance Company, a GE Capital insurance subsidiary, Ms. Smith was most recently head of the Directors & Officers Liability book of business. During her tenure, she was responsible for the company’s D&O P&L, and managed a team of underwriters, claims’ experts, and legal professionals in both Chicago and New York. Read more about Heather Smith.

Judy A. Smith

Founder and President Smith & Company

Ms. Smith is the founder and President of Smith & Company, a leading strategic advisory firm with offices in Washington D.C., Los Angeles and New York.  Over the last 25 years, Ms. Smith has brought her unique combination of communication skills, media savvy, legal and political acumen to clients facing a wide array of issues and challenges throughout the United States and abroad.

Ms. Smith honed her skills through her experiences with some of the most historic and sensational events of our time, including the Iran Contra investigation, the prosecution of former Washington D.C. Mayor Marion Barry, the 1991 Gulf War, the Los Angeles riots, the President Clinton scandal involving Monica Lewinsky, the congressional inquiry of Enron, the General Petraeus CIA scandal and the Sony Corporation hacking crisis. Read more about Judy Smith.

Ally Coll Steele

President Purple Campaign

Ms. Steele is a lawyer and nationally recognized expert, thought leader, writer, and public speaker on the #MeToo movement and gender equality in the workplace. Her writing on legal and workplace issues has been published in the Washington Post, the Harvard Journal on Legislation, The Hill, and Jezebel
Ms. Steele currently serves as President of the Purple Campaign, a non-profit organization she co-founded to address workplace sexual harassment in the wake of #MeToo. The Purple Campaign’s mission is to end workplace harassment by implementing stronger corporate policies, establishing better laws, and empowering people to create lasting change in their own workplaces and communities.  Read more about Ally Steele.

Danielle Sugarman

Vice President BlackRock's Investment Stewardship

Ms. Sugarman is a Vice President with BlackRock’s Investment Stewardship team.  She serves as the lead analyst for BlackRock’s energy, utilities, pharmaceutical and biotech portfolios in the Americas. Ms. Sugarman’s work includes engagement with executives and directors of BlackRock’s portfolio companies on matters related to corporate strategy, governance, environmental and social matters, M&A considerations, proxy contests and hostile takeover bids. Ms. Sugarman votes BlackRock’s shares at corporate annual and special meetings in relation to the above. Ms. Sugarman has particular expertise in climate change, sustainability and environmental and securities law.  Prior to joining BlackRock, she practiced as an attorney for over 10 years, including spending several years at the Center for Climate Change Law out of Columbia Law School.  Most recently, Ms. Sugarman worked as an Associate Program Officer for the Robertson Foundation, working on Julian Robertson’s environmental and medical research giving. Ms. Sugarman graduated from Penn Law School in 2005, and attended Barnard College, Columbia University.  She sits on the International Environmental Law Committee of the New York City Bar as well as the Advisory Board of Kids in Need of Defense.

Kristi Swartz

Managing Partner Swartz, Binnersley & Associates

Ms. Swartz is a lawyer admitted in Hong Kong and England & Wales, who concentrates her practice in corporate finance and fintech matters. Ms. Swartz is well versed in providing practical and real-time advice relating to services such as robo-advisory, peer-to-peer lending, alternative payments through to the set-up and running of crypto-exchanges. 

Ms. Swartz has practiced in Hong Kong for over 20 years, and works with emerging growth companies through to listed multinational corporations in Hong Kong, China, Asia and Europe across a broad range of industries such as finance, venture capital and telecommunications. Serving as counsel to East Asia Tax Service limited, the Lithuanian Consulate, the Indian Chamber of Commerce and the Consulate of Uruguay, positions Ms. Swartz strongly in understanding the nuances of doing business on both an international and local level. Read more about Kristi Swartz.

Tina Tchen

Partner Buckley LLP

Ms. Tchen is a partner at Buckley LLP and heads up its Chicago office. Over the course of her extensive career, Ms. Tchen has handled complex civil litigation and enforcement matters in both state and federal courts in Illinois and across the country. She has represented major global corporations and their officers and directors in a wide range of matters, including consumer class actions, corporate investigations, government enforcement actions, executive compensation, and breach of contract litigation. Ms. Tchen also has represented public agencies in state and federal class actions, and successfully argued before the United States Supreme Court on behalf of the State of Illinois. Read more about Tina Tchen.

Sharyn Tejani

Director TIME'S UP Legal Defense Fund

Ms. Tejani is the Director of the TIME’S UP Legal Defense Fund. Immediately prior to starting this role in April 2018, she served as a Deputy Chief at the Employment Litigation Section of the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. In that role, she supervised the investigation and litigation of cases on behalf of workers facing sex harassment, pregnancy discrimination, and employment barriers that unjustly screen out women and people of color. Read more about Sharyn Tejani.

Ken Tepper

CEO and Managing Director PLANCorp, LLC

After graduating from Villanova Law School in 1988, Mr. Tepper began his banking career as General Counsel and Corporate Secretary for an east-coast commercial bank holding company where he was responsible for complying with and reporting for the Bank’s supervisory state and federal regulatory bodies. He was subsequently recruited by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (“FDIC”) and assigned as Credit Specialist to the Resolution Trust Corporation (“RTC”) where he participated in the management and disposition of over $25 billion of non-performing assets seized during the nation’s savings and loan crisis. Mr. Tepper was later appointed President & CEO for a NASDAQ-listed FDIC-insured bank (USABancShares) and was elected Chairman & CEO of one of the world’s largest multi-national ATM networks (TRM Corporation). Mr. Tepper is currently the CEO and Managing Director of PLANCorp, LLC, a company that specializes in the management and orderly liquidation of failed bank holding companies with more than $20 billion in pre-petition assets.

Renée Peterson Trudeau

President/Owner Renee Trudeau & Associates, LLC

Ms. Trudeau is an internationally-recognized leadership coach, speaker and president of Career Strategists, an award-winning consulting firm. Her corporate clients include Fortune 500 companies, national conferences and nonprofit organizations.  Ms. Trudeau has been facilitating transformational events for women for more than 25 years and she’s on faculty at the prestigious Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health, 1440 Multiversity and Omega Institute. A sought-after life balance expert, Ms. Trudeau's work has been featured in the New York Times, US News and World Report, Good Housekeeping, Working Mother and more. She is the author of three best-selling books on life-balance including The Mother’s Guide to Self-Renewal: How to Reclaim, Rejuvenate and Re-Balance Your Life. She and her team have certified hundreds of women leaders in more than 10 countries around the world to lead self-renewal groups based on her award-winning curriculum. She lives with her husband and teenage son in Austin, TX.

Elisse B. Walter

Director, Occidental Petroleum Corporation; Commissioner and Chairman U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (2008-13)

Ms. Walter, 66, was appointed Commissioner of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) by President George W. Bush, and served in that capacity from 2008 until 2013. President Barack Obama designated her as the 30th Chairman of the SEC in December 2012. Prior to her appointment as an SEC Commissioner, she was with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and its predecessor, the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD), from 1996-2008. She served as Senior Executive Vice President, Regulatory Policy and Programs for FINRA and held the comparable position at NASD before its 2007 consolidation with NYSE Member Regulation. Earlier in her career, she served as the General Counsel of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) from 1994 to 1996 and as Deputy Director of the SEC Division of Corporation Finance from 1986 to 1994. Read more about Elisse Walter.

Debbie Wemyss

Founder DW Consulting Solutions LLC

Ms. Wemyss enjoys sharing her passion for LinkedIn in terms that educate audiences as to how LinkedIn draws visibility and business to them. LinkedIn is the largest professional networking site in the world with over 590M members in over 200 countries. It is a significant, valuable tool for building business relationships and driving traffic to websites, company pages and more. Ms. Wemyss has personally coached over 750 individual professionals and hundreds more through workshops and webinars. She will educate and entertain your audience to increase their awareness of this incredibly popular and professional site. It is not just another social media site. LinkedIn is a very powerful marketing tool that launched in 2003 and continues to grow by adding more than 2 new members per second!

A review of Ms. Wemyss’ LinkedIn profile at www.linkedin.com/in/debbiewemyss will provide over 100 testimonials as to the effectiveness of her coaching, presentations and workshops.

Heather Wolf

Managing Director Allegis Partners

Ms. Wolf is Managing Director at Allegis Partners, a boutique search firm and sister company of Major Lindsay and Africa. Her practice focuses on Board and CEO placements with a "diversity first" approach. Previously, Ms. Wolf spent 15 years as Program Director for the Financial Times Live, the FT's global events business. She developed and hosted programs for corporate board members and C-suite executives, including the FT Outstanding Directors Exchange (ODX) conference series and awards program, and the FT US Banking Forum. Read more about Heather Wolf.

Debra Wong Yang

Partner Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher

Ms. Yang is a partner in Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher’s Los Angeles office.  Ms. Yang has long represented companies, boards, and audit and other board committees in internal investigations, compliance-related issues, and criminal investigations regarding the FCPA, health care laws, financial controls, trade secrets, and cyber/data intrusions, among multiple other areas.  She serves as Special Counsel to a corporate compliance committee.  She is experienced in overseeing teams of lawyers conducting internal investigations and has frequently reviewed and revamped compliance programs in a variety of industries. Read more about Debra Wong Yang.

Jenny R. Yang

Fellow Open Society Foundations Leadership in Government and Urban Institute; Chair, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (2013-2018)

Ms. Yang served as a Commissioner and Chair of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission from 2013 to 2018. Under her leadership, the Commission launched the Select Task Force on the Study of Harassment in the Workplace to identify innovative solutions to prevent harassment at work. Currently, as an Open Society Foundations Leadership in Government Fellow, and as a Fellow with the Urban Institute, in the Center on Labor, Human Services, and Population, Ms. Yang is studying the impact of structural changes in the workplace on the growing number of Americans working as independent contractors, subcontractors, temporary workers, and in the gig economy. In addition, as a Strategic Partner with Working Ideal, she is helping employers implement evidenced-based practices to promote inclusion and equality of opportunity. Read more about Jenny R. Yang.

Sally Quillian Yates

Partner King & Spalding; Deputy Attorney General (2015-17)

Former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates is a partner in King & Spalding’s Special Matters & Government Investigations practice. Ms. Yates’ deep experience, leadership and wide-ranging background provide clients with seasoned judgment in difficult times. Her practice focuses on counseling clients in complex and sensitive matters, including government enforcement and regulatory matters, compliance, corporate governance and crisis management. Drawing upon her nearly three decades at the Department of Justice, she specializes in internal and independent investigations for public and private organizations and boards.  As the second-highest ranking official at the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and as Acting Attorney General, Ms. Yates was responsible for all of DOJ’s 113,000 employees including all prosecutorial, litigating, and national security components.  Read more about Sally Yates.