Over the last decade, advancements in technology have created a paradigm shift. The ripple effects have ushered corporate transformations that once took years and now are executed in months. Across various sectors, to be a technology leader has translated into being an industry leader. Being at the forefront of innovation has produced the same outcome – higher productivity. In some cases, mobile devices have created more efficient communication within a global supply chain, virtual conference rooms have led to faster decisions regarding product development, and cloud storage has allowed for easier access to more data for marketing and sales analytics. Corporate strategy has been revolutionized by technology and it is inevitable that the next ten years will usher in another wave of even more powerful innovations. Businesses and individuals must be poised to leverage these advancements to remain competitive.
Aaron Aboagye is a Principal in the New Jersey Office of McKinsey and company where he focuses mainly of helping High Tech and Telecommunications clients on strategy and operations topics.
Prior to joining McKinsey, Aaron was a Senior Systems and Software Design Engineer at Texas Instruments in Houston, TX. In this role, Aaron was the technical lead in the development and commercialization of a number of embedded processors for Telecommunications applications.
Aaron holds an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology and a B.Eng. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Botswana.
Kwasi Asare is Executive Vice President of services at Everfi. He is responsible the management and implementation of Everfi solutions. Kwasi builds new business, consults with senior education officials, and drives the successful delivery of education technology that provides all learners with critical life skills. Asare has held senior leadership positions in business development, product management, brand management, consulting, software development, and strategy at Fortune 500 companies and led and built high growth companies resulting successful market exits. Most recently he led the successful merger of Moodlerooms, an education software company, with Blackboard, an education software vendor, in March 2012 as Executive Director of Business Development. Asare also serves as board director at the IVG Foundation, a collegiate career preparation organization, and senior advisor and a mentor for the Simmons Memorial Foundation, a mentoring organization for college bound high school students. Asare holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science from Wake Forest University and a master’s degree in business administration from the UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School. Asare was a participant of the Broad Residency in Urban Education (Class of 2009-2011), serving his two-year Residency at the U.S. Department of Education. He and his wife reside in Washington, DC with their dog Mr. Big.
Fritz Charles is the Chief Data Scientist at iROKO Partners. Fritz began his career on Wall Street as a derivative trader at Lehman Brothers and Barclays Capital. In this role, Fritz engineered equity swaps to track hedge fund client portfolios. Fritz then went onto pursue his MBA at the Wharton School where he studied entrepreneurial management. After graduating in 2011, Fritz consulted with various gaming startups in Silicon Valley before returning to NYC to join iROKO Partners to manage analytics for the iROKOtv and iROKING platforms.
iROKO Partners is the world’s largest distributor of Nigerian entertainment. Since December 2010, the company has built a global audience of over four million unique users from 178 different countries across its movie and music platforms. The company delivers, on average, 193,000,000 minutes of content every month across all of the iROKO Partners platforms.
Fritz blogs about tech at www.fritzcharles.com.
Dion Graham is Vice-President, Line of Business Procurement for SAP. Mr. Graham is an 18-year veteran at SAP having served in senior management roles in sales, solution management, business development, consulting and alliances. Mr. Graham is currently responsible for North America Sales and Go-to-Market programs for SAP’s procurement portfolio applications including Supplier Relationship Management, Sourcing, Contract Lifecycle Management, Spend Analytics, and Supplier Lifecycle Management. Mr. Graham played a key role in SAP’s recent $4.3B acquisition of Ariba – the leading Business Collaborative Network and cloud based Spend Management provider. Mr. Graham is a technology and procurement thought leader and spends considerable time advising global fortune 500 clients how to leverage technology to enable procurement excellence.
Mr. Graham has more than 23 years of proven experience in designing, selling & implementing enterprise application solutions and managing trusted customer relationships. Preceding his 18-year SAP career, Mr. Graham held several management positions with Hughes Aircraft Company (Raytheon) and Alpha Therapeutic Corporation where he worked in information technology, operations, and engineering.
Mr. Graham graduated from San Diego State University with a B.S. in Business Administration with an emphasis in Information Technology. Mr. Graham is a member of the SAP North America Diversity Council, Triangle Technology Executives Council (TTEC), North Carolina Technology Association (NCTA), and the Black Data Processing Association (BDPA). Mr. Graham is a board member of Movement of Youth (Durham, NC), member of 100 Black Men of Triangle East (Raleigh, NC), member of Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity (Boule) and Omega Psi Phi Fraternity. Mr. Graham is certified with the American Production and Inventory Control Society (APICS) and was selected as “Pros to Know” by Supply & Demand Chain Executive in 2011. Mr. Graham resides in Chapel Hill, NC with his wife Tina and twin daughters London and Lauren.
Wright is the CTO of Interactive One, Interactive One is a digital and print media company focusing on the African-American and urban market. As CTO Wright is responsible for the technical strategy of all the Interactive One online properties, which service of 9 million visitors per month. Their portfolio includes 5 national site, 65 radio sites and two social products. Wright also was the co-founder of Globalgrind.com w/ Russell Simmons and was the CTO of BET’s interactive division leading the growth of BET.com from 2000-2006. Wright is also an advocate for increasing diversity within the technology industry and was featured on CNN’s black in America series. He reached launch the “Close The Divide” project, which aims to increase awareness about the digital opportunity to underserved audiences.
Amid a lagging economic recovery and impacted by the debt crisis in Europe, the U.S. financial services industry continues to experience rapid change; Investment banks must comply with new regulation (e.g., Dodd-Frank), investment managers are challenged with underperforming funds, and private equity firms are finding it increasingly difficult to both raise and invest capital. Panelists will discuss the current state of the financial markets, how financial institutions are adapting to this new climate, and ways for professionals in the industry to position themselves for success.
Abi Adisa is the founder and a managing partner of Oridun Capital Management (OCM), an alternative asset manager, investing primarily in public securities and special situations across West Africa. Complementary to his activities at OCM, Abi is the Co-founder/CEO of Amara Suites (an OCM portfolio company), West Africa’s leading premium serviced apartments provider. Abi is also the Co-founder/CEO of OCM’s recently launched Arete Select, a provider of top tier residential staffing in Africa.
Prior to founding OCM, Abi was a principal and founder of Cignal Ventures, a US middle market private equity firm. Abi has worked in venture capital and technology roles at Spinnaker Ventures, Sprint Nextel, Comcast, Excite@Home and Allied Technologies Group.
Abi holds a BSc in Electrical Engineering from Obafemi Awolowo University, an MBA from the Wharton Business School, and is an alumnus of the Africa Venture Capital Fellows program, an initiative of the World Economic Forum's Global Leaders of Tomorrow program.
Ms. Rao was the fourth investment professional to join ICV and worked as an Associate at ICV before attending Harvard Business School where she received her MBA degree prior to rejoining ICV. Prior to joining ICV, Ms. Rao was in the investment banking division at Lehman Brothers in New York where she was involved with a variety of mergers and acquisitions and corporate finance transactions. Ms. Rao holds a BS degree magna cum laude in Economics from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania and a Masters in Business Administration from Harvard Business School.
Sháka Rasheed is a sr. business development/investor relations professional with an emphasis on alternative asset classes. Previously, he was Director, Global Distribution, for Citadel Asset Management. With a focus on Citadel’s Americas Distribution efforts, Sháka played a critical leadership role positioning the firm’s flagship multi-strategy fund, and its equity long/short, global macro, and relative value fixed income single-strategy hedge funds to meet the needs of the largest, most complex, institutional investors throughout the U.S., Canada, and Latin America. Leveraging 19 years of institutional sales, sales management and financial services expertise, Sháka cultivated new clients from multiple investor segments including corporate/public pensions, endowments/foundations, sovereign wealth funds, family offices, hedge fund of funds, bank platforms, insurance companies and consultants. In this capacity, Sháka has served as the Acting Head of Citadel’s Americas Distribution business, devising and executing on his group’s strategic business plan; leading the creation of critical marketing collateral/initiatives; implementing product launches; making key new hires; expanded the utility of a CRM system to optimize the systemic measurement of important initiatives and territory coverage activities. Sháka joined Citadel in 2010 and generated over $930mm of indicative demand (+$450mm in new fundings to-date), across 11 institutional investors.
Immediately prior to joining Citadel, Sháka was a Managing Director/Senior Client Advisor with J.P. Morgan Asset Management’s Strategic Client Group. A 16 year JPM-vet, Sháka delivered US institutional investors solutions across a spectrum of alternatives (hedge funds/private equity/real assets) and traditional (equities/fixed income) asset classes. Sháka led J.P. Morgan to securing its first-ever $1bn alternatives, strategic partnership mandate across hedge funds, private equity and real estate investments with a large public pension; and separately secured a $400mm global and emerging market equity-beta substitution mandate with another institutional investor. In this role, Sháka raised over $5.2bn in new assets from institutional investors across various segments.
Previously, Sháka served as a Regional Manager with J.P. Morgan Funds; a VP/Banker with J.P. Morgan Private Bank; an Associate with J.P. Morgan Securities; and an investment banking Analyst with Merrill Lynch. Sháka obtained a B.A. with honors as an Oprah Winfrey Scholar from Morehouse College; and attained an MBA from Harvard Business School as a Robert Toigo Fellow.
Sháka serves on the Board of Governors of the Robert Toigo Foundation. He resides in Montclair, New Jersey with his wife, Dr. Lela Weems, and their two daughters, Kira and Alia.
Kobi Sam is a vice president at Evercore Partners, a premier global independent investment banking advisory firm, where he focuses on mergers and acquisitions and corporate finance advisory across multiple industries. He has advised on over $50 billion in completed M&A transactions.
Prior to joining Evercore, Kobi was a management consultant with McKinsey & Company where he advised companies on a wide range of business issues. He began his career as a research analyst in the fixed income division of JPMorgan.
Kobi has an M.B.A. from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a B.E. in Electrical Engineering and Economics from the State University of New York at Stony Brook. He is also involved with TechnoServe, a non-profit that promotes business solutions to poverty in the developing world, and has volunteered with them in West Africa.
Over the last decade, the combination of the tireless work of socially-minded leaders and the ethically driven citizen has resulted in a rapid rise in the popularity of social impact. Programs specializing in social entrepreneurship and impact investing have become increasingly popular with young individuals in universities and progressive nonprofit organizations have been forming and growing at a rapid pace. Today, these professionals are bringing disruptive innovations while solving some of the most difficult societal and economic problems. From education to healthcare to international development, nonprofits and social entrepreneurs are making a difference on a large scale. Our panelists will discuss these trends, as well as the most disruptive models of delivery, the barriers to getting these models operational, balancing the desire for financial viability and the desire for social good, and transitioning skills from the private sector to the social sector.
Susan Asiyanbi is responsible for ensuring corps members have the necessary training and ongoing program support to lead their students to success as highly effective teachers. After teaching fourth grade math and science in Newark as a 2001 corps member, Asiyanbi joined staff as a program director in 2003 supporting new corps members in our Newark region. She then served as managing director of the charter Philadelphia Institute and subsequently as the vice president of institutes before leaving to pursue her graduate degree. Prior to returning to Teach For America, Asiyanbi summered at Boston Consulting Group and joined Sears Holding Company as a senior leader associate reporting to the CEO on key strategic initiatives. Asiyanbi earned her B.A. from Williams College, received her M.A. in Education Administration & Supervision from St. Peters College, and obtained her M.B.A. from Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management.
Jason Green is Executive VP for Rocket Learning Partners, one of the nation’s leading providers of educational services to K-12 institutions. In this capacity, Jason supports the company’s operations, ongoing national expansion and business development efforts. A social entrepreneur, Jason has spent his career creating opportunities to effectuate positive social change in the field of education. Jason’s efforts have focused primarily on creating high quality educational services for students in under-resourced communities.
Jason has been a pioneer in developing the supplemental education services (SES) industry which entitles low income students attending low performing schools the opportunity to receive funds toward additional tutoring. In 2003 Jason co-founded BEST Education Partners, one of the nation’s first major SES providers serving 1,000 students in Philadelphia, PA. BEST helped students make on average 30% gains in literacy. Later acquired by Platform Learning, Jason helped Platform Learning become the leading national provider of SES for several years. In 2006, Jason co-founded Greentree Education Partners in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to deliver tutoring services to students in some of Philadelphia’s most underserved communities. Greentree Education led to the launch of Sky Community Partners which provides low-income students with scholarships to attend high-performing schools. In 2007, Jason joined the Rocket Learning as Executive VP of Operations, leading the southern territory of the organization through several years of strong academic and financial performance.
Jason has proven himself a capable executive and dedicated social entrepreneur. He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Morehouse College. Jason holds an MBA from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania where he was an I.W. Burnham Fellowship recipient and an M.S. from University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education. Jason has served as a board member of Philadelphia’s Sustainable Business Network, an adjunct professor at Temple University and a board member of the Philadelphia Chapter of the Black Alliance for Educational Options (BAEO).
Rashid Shabazz joined the Open Society Foundation’s U.S. Programs staff in March 2009 as a Program Officer with the Campaign for Black Male Achievement. Working with his colleagues, Shabazz helped lead efforts to launch the first ever Black Male Achievement (BMA) Fellowship. The BMA Fellowship established by Open Society Foundations and Echoing Green targets social entrepreneurs who are starting up new and innovative organizations in the field of black male achievement.
Before joining OSF, he served as Senior Account Executive with Fenton Communications working on One Nation, a national initiative to shape public perception of American Muslims through media campaigns and popular culture. Prior to working on the One Nation project, Shabazz was an education organizer and campaign strategist with the Prison Moratorium Project. He helped wage the project’s successful Not With Our Money campaign, which leveraged student organizing on college campuses nationwide to pressure multi-national caterer Sodexho Alliance to divest its stake in a private prison firm, Corrections Corporation of America.
Shabazz worked with the Drug Policy Alliance as a Public Policy and Community Outreach Associate working to address the disparate impact the war on drugs has had on African American and Latino communities. He has been a contributing writer for several publications, including The Source and Trace magazines, the New Haven Advocate, the Huffington Post, the Future 500: Youth Organizing and Activism in the United States and many others. Shabazz’s writing experience blossomed while an editorial assistant at Third World Press, the oldest independent black publishing company in the United States, where he assisted on projects for such writers as Gwendolyn Brooks, Sonia Sanchez, and Amiri Baraka.
Shabazz is a former Open Society Institute New York Community Fellow. He holds a B.A. in English from George Mason University, an M.A. in African studies from Yale University and an M.S. from Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. He has sat on several youth media boards including the Youth Media Reporter, WireTap, and Project Set. He continues to blog and lives in Brooklyn, NY with his beautiful wife Rashida Bumbray and daughter, Zahara Shabazz.
Umi has spent the past fifteen years working in the social sector. His experience includes direct service, program development & management, consulting, board service and organizational leadership in the nonprofit sector. During this time he served in various roles at the United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania for over eight years. Umi and his wife, Sylvie, also ran a sustainable travel business based in Ecuador called Solidarity Travels. Umi has traveled extensively and lived abroad for more than 6 years. He brings an intense passion for the community empowerment and educational opportunity embodied in the Lipman Family Prize and hopes this work will help bring recognition to the University of Pennsylvania as a hub of learning for the social sector.
Leon Wilson is executive vice president of the Nonprofit Finance Fund. Previously, he was executive vice president of Bank of America's Charitable Asset Division and corporate senior vice president of GMAC Residential. Wilson serves on the advisory boards of Boston University and the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund, and is a trustee of the Boston African Presidents-in-Residence Program. He is a past trustee of Cambridge College and The Boston Conservatory. Wilson holds a bachelor's degree from Boston University and completed advanced studies at Harvard Business School and the University of Virginia's Graduate School of Retail Bank Management.
The new era in American health care is driven by regulatory reform, innovation in technology, and rising healthcare costs. Providers and patients are becoming more accountable for ensuring that care is high in quality while low in cost. Amid these rapid changes exist new opportunities. Healthcare companies and entrepreneurs are responding by creating products and services that improve care delivery and build continuity across the healthcare system. The panel will discuss these trends, as well as the implications of the Affordable Care Act of 2012, the role of technology in the healthcare industry, and the renewed focus on preventive health.
Fiona Gathright is President of Wellness Corporate Solutions, an award winning woman owned business that specializes in customized, high impact corporate wellness programs. She is a 2012 Ernst & Young Entrepreneurial Winning Woman and in 2012, Inc Magazine named her company number 533 on Inc Magazine’s fastest growing companies and one of the top 10 fastest growing African American owned businesses in the US. She has spent the last 25 years in corporate business management and marketing. Prior to founding Wellness Corporate Solutions, she and her husband owned a successful legal research company that served 99 of the top 100 law firms, as well as numerous investment banks. As a small business owner she had first hand knowledge of the burden rising health care costs place on an employer. After her first business was sold, she focused on her passion for health and wellness and created a company that helps businesses manage and reduce their health care costs, while putting in place programs that result in increased recruitment and retention of healthy employees. WCS clients include Fortune 100 companies such as Exxon Mobil, Marriott and Discovery Communications. Fiona also writes a popular blog "Corporate Wellness Insights" with up to the minute news of best practices and industry trends, and is sought after for her expertise. She serves on the board of several organizations, including the Institute for Human Resources and the Alliance For Workplace Excellence, partners with the Alzheimer’s Association and donates a portion of her corporate profits to A Wider Circle, a non profit that provides wellness programs to women and families in shelters. Fiona received her BSc in Biology from Georgetown University.
Fiona received her BSc in Biology from Georgetown University.
Edmondo J. Robinson, M.D., MBA, FACP, is the physician-in-chief for Christiana Care’s Wilmington Hospital, a role that involves overseeing primary clinical functions, including the growth of health services related to the ongoing expansion of that campus. He is also assistant chief medical officer for Christiana Care Health System.
Dr. Robinson joined the health system in 2008 as the founding medical director of Christiana Care Hospitalist Partners. He continues to hold this position, overseeing numerous doctors who practice primarily at Christiana Hospital. His oversight of this group allows him to apply his management interests in the efficient use of hospital resources and transitions of care.
His other roles include assistant medical director for the multi-specialty Medical Group of Christiana Care and clinical assistant professor of medicine at Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University. He also has worked as a hospitalist at Penn Presbyterian Medical Center and for the Kaiser Permanente Medical Group.
Dr. Robinson has credentials in medicine, management and health policy. He holds a medical degree from the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles. His coursework for his master’s degree in business administration from The Wharton School at the University Of Pennsylvania emphasized health care management. He also completed a master’s degree in health policy research at the University of Pennsylvania.
His post-graduate training included a residency in internal medicine at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center as well as a fellowship as a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania. He was also senior fellow at the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics at the University of Pennsylvania.
Dr. Robinson is involved in numerous professional organizations, most notably as a fellow in the American College of Physicians.
Shiva is a Vice President in Healthcare Investment Banking division at Deutsche Bank and focuses on healthcare services including HCIT, Hospitals and Managed Care. He has advised several clients on a range of mergers & acquisitions and corporate finance transactions.
Prior to joining Deutsche Bank, Shiva spent 2 years at Merrill Lynch Investment Banking and advised clients on various strategic transactions. He also spent 5 years at Intel Corp focusing on product and business development. Collectively, he has more than 10+ years of experience in investment banking and business development.
Shiva holds 7 U.S. patents and has passed all levels of Chartered Financial Analyst program. He holds Bachelor of Technology in EE from IIT Bombay, Masters of Science in EE from UCLA and MBA from Kellogg School of Management.
Dan Sinnott brings 30 years of diverse leadership experience to his role as CEO of Sinnott Executive Consulting. With a values-based leadership style, he has successfully led organizations through significant cultural change, resulting in substantial gains in quality, financial and satisfaction results. One of his greatest competencies is to develop and mentor leaders; five colleagues who benefited from his coaching have gone on to become hospital chief executive officers. Dan has proven strategic, financial and operational leadership skills in traditional and matrix organizations within single hospital, academic medical center and multi-hospital systems.
In 2006 Dan launched Sinnott Executive Consulting with the sole purpose of developing strong, ethical leaders. The unique model of Sinnott Executive Consulting is focused on developing both an executive’s leadership and business skills. Dan works with executives from both profit and nonprofit organizations, with a special emphasis on developing the leadership and business skills of first time executives.
Prior to starting his own firm, Dan served as executive director/chief executive officer of Temple University Hospital, Philadelphia. He was responsible for the strategic and operational performance for a two-campus 667 bed Tertiary Care facility with $615 million in net revenue and 3500 employees.
Before joining Temple, Dan spent 15 years with Denver-based Catholic Health Initiatives, most recently as regional senior vice president of operations. In this position he oversaw 10 hospitals, two nursing homes, approximately 13,000 employees and $1.2 billion in net revenue for the company’s mid-Atlantic region.
Dan holds an MBA in Healthcare Administration from Temple University. He completed his undergraduate studies at Mount St. Mary’s College in Emmitsburg, MD. Dan graduated with honors with a major in social welfare and sociology.
Dan is an accomplished speaker and is an Instructor at the University Of Pennsylvania Wharton School Of Business where he teaches in the Management Communication Program in the Executive MBA and MBA programs. He also teaches at the International Executive Development Center in Bled, Slovenia. Dan has published several articles focused on executive leadership development and recently published his first book titled The Commencement - 8 Challenging Guidelines For Achieving Business & Career Success.
In the two chapters of his career to date, Marlon Thompson has been focused on developing innovative technologies and driving growth in healthcare companies. In is current role as Senior Director at Siemens Healthcare, he leads the Strategic Planning group in the Diagnostics division. Prior to Siemens, Dr. Thompson was a management consultant at McKinsey & Co., New York, where he consulted to Fortune 500 healthcare companies in the biopharmaceutical and diagnostics sectors. Prior to McKinsey, Dr. Thompson was a Senior Scientist at Rohm & Haas Company (a subsidiary of the Dow Chemical Company) where he developed advanced materials for digital imaging.
Dr. Thompson has a Masters in Business Administration from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, where he majored in Health Care Management. He also holds a Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry from the University of the West Indies. Dr. Thompson was also a Post-Doctoral Fellow in Chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley, where he developed and patented targeted MRI contrast agents for cardiovascular imaging.
The proliferation of smart phones has created an unintended side effect, transforming the digital divide from the inequality of internet access between different demographic groups to the disparity of knowledge and skills needed to use technology effectively. Although African Americans lead the way in connecting to the internet through mobile devices, the community is being challenged by more access to technology. The reality is that use of mobile devices for meaningful content creation is minuscule when compared to their use for entertainment. This panel will highlight the successful strategies of those who are seeking to enhance the quality of engagement between African Americans and technology, address leveraging the internet to create content, and discuss the role that Science, Technology, Education and Mathematics (STEM) initiatives play in shrinking the digital divide.
Chris Bennett is the co-founder and CEO of Central.ly, a web based product for small businesses to reach more customers through an easy to create, beautiful website and their social media tools. He is passionate about social change, innovation, and the Internet. He has a background founding businesses from an early age and his last startup, LiquidBooks, was a success on the University of Pennsylvania campus. In his free time, he loves to travel, swap stories, and explore San Francisco. Chris holds a B.S. in Economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Irving Pressley McPhail was named the sixth president and Chief Executive Officer of the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering, Inc. (NACME) on September 1, 2009 (www.nacme.org). He joined NACME in 2007 as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. Prior to that, he founded and served as principal of The McPhail Group LLC. He served 15 years as a college president or chancellor at The Community College of Baltimore County, St. Louis Community College at Florissant Valley, and LeMoyne-Owen College. Under his leadership, The Community College of Baltimore County was named one of 12 Vanguard Learning Colleges in the U.S. and Canada in 2000 by the League for Innovation in the Community College; won the Bellwether Award in the category of Planning, Finance and Governance in 2000; and was awarded the PBS O’Banion Prize for Leading the Way to Change in Teaching and Learning in 2003. Dr. McPhail also served as Chief Operating Officer of the Baltimore City Public Schools. He has held tenured full professorships at three colleges and universities, and served as an affiliate or visiting professor at the University of Maryland at College Park, the University of Pennsylvania, and Morgan State University. Working at the nexus of practice, policy, and research in literacy education, post-secondary student success, community college leadership, and STEM education, Dr. McPhail is the co-editor of Teaching African American Learners to Read: Perspectives and Practices, published by the International Reading Association in 2005, and the author of more than 50 journal articles, chapters, monographs, and technical reports. He earned a bachelor’s degree in development sociology at Cornell University and a master’s degree in reading at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He earned the doctorate in reading/language arts at the University of Pennsylvania as a National Fellowships Fund Fellow. He was awarded the Honorary Doctor of Engineering degree at the 155th Commencement of Polytechnic Institute of New York University on May 18, 2010. Dr. McPhail was an American Council on Education Fellow in Academic Administration at The Johns Hopkins University, and he completed the Presidents Academy Summer Institute at the American Association of Community Colleges and the Institute for Educational Management at Harvard University. His many awards include the Ira D. and Rubye Hibler Hall Endowed Heritage Lecture Series Award from Langston University, the Alumni of Color Achievement Award from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and the Pioneer Award from the National Council on Black American Affairs of the American Association of Community Colleges. Dr. McPhail serves on the board of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers Education Foundation and the National Council on Black American Affairs/ Northeast Region (an affiliate council of the American Association of Community Colleges).
Tim Reese brings more than 20 years of experience in finance and startups in the US and UK. He is the founding Partner of the National Minority Angel Network (NMAN™) a start-up services company whose goal is to foster Angel investments in minority lead startups throughout the US. He is also the Managing Partner of Forge Intellectual Capital a successful financial advisory and consulting services firm. His past efforts have lead in the successful sale of several companies including one he founded and sold in 2000. In 2005 Mr. Reese also cofounded the Minority Angel Investors Network (MAIN); MAIN is the first formal minority Angel investment group in the US and primarily serves the Mid-Atlantic Region. MAIN has made over 28 investments in 14 startups. Mr. Reese has been a guest lecturer and speaker, and has received numerous awards and recognition for his work. Recent accomplishments include serving as national panelist for The White House Urban Entrepreneurship Forums (2011), a guest panelist for Black Enterprise 20/20 Vision Forum (2011), a guest panelist for The America21 Project: A Gathering of Angels (2011), and a panelist for National Association of Black Journalist Annual Conference (2011). Mr. Reese serves various boards including Temple University’s College of Engineering, Bownce, and Parallel Computers Technology. He is an Adjunct Professor at Temple University College of Engineering. Mr. Reese holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering Technology from Temple University and was a 2000 Fellow at Temple University Fox School of Business and Management.
Bonita C. Stewart brings more than 20+ years of marketing, technology and industry expertise to Google, where she oversees the company’s Partner Business Solutions for North and South America. She works with partners across all verticals to monetize their assets and grow their businesses with Google products, including DoubleClick publisher technology, advertising exchanges, video, mobile and social.
Prior to her Partnerships role, Bonita led Google’s US strategy and sales for the Automotive, Finance and Travel categories with responsibility for delivering integrated advertising solutions. Before Google, she served as Director, Chrysler Group Interactive Communications for DaimlerChrysler AG and Director, Chrysler Brand Advertising. In 2005 Advertising Age named the Chrysler Group Interactive Marketer of the Year. Bonita also enjoyed a 10-year career with IBM and co-founded Nia Enterprises, a web-based company, in 2000.
Bonita is a frequent speaker at marketing and interactive conferences such as ANA, AD:TECH and Automotive World Congress, and has been quoted in such publications as Automotive News, Advertising Age, Brandweek and USA Today. In 2005, she co-authored “The Fifth P of Marketing,” an article for CRM Magazine. Advertising Age named her a “Woman to Watch” in 2011.
Bonita graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from Howard University and an MBA from Harvard Business School. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Cranbrook Art Academy based in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and the Harvard Business School Club of New York. She resides in Englewood, New Jersey with her husband.
Everyone loves the story of an entrepreneur who is on the path to stardom. Today's business landscape seems ripe with opportunity for determined, smart individuals to make it big on their own. But what does it actually take to transform an innovative idea into a viable business? What is the daily life of an entrepreneur really like?
Join our panel discussion about seizing opportunity, assembling a high-performing team, and overcoming inevitable hurdles to make it out of the trenches. Further, our panel will discuss how to embrace uncertainty and build resilience to effectively start and grow a venture.
Norrinda Brown Hayat is co-founder of Brown Betty Dessert Boutique in Philadelphia. She graduated from Dartmouth College with an A.B. in History and from law school at the University of Virginia. She then went on to practice law, working with firms Hogan & Hartson, DLA Piper Rudnick, Booth & Tucker and currently for the federal government.
Norrinda spent much of her childhood in her grandmother Betty’s West Philadelphia kitchen. In 2004, and after a series of cake tastings and focus groups, Norrinda took her love of baking and opened Brown Betty Dessert Boutique’s first location in Northern Liberties. The vintage-modern bakery quickly became the go-to spot for cakes, cupcakes and other sweets in the city. Assisted by Norrinda’s business savvy, keen sense of branding, and sharp marketing ideas, the bakery, which is run by three generations of women in the family, has grown to at team of 16 and has opened 2 additional locations.
Norrinda and Brown Betty have been featured by Philadelphia Magazine, O Magazine, Rachel Ray Magazine, Food & Wine Magazine, Essence Magazine, Uptown Magazine and on local and national television, including the Katie Couric Show, TLC and The Food Network. Norrinda recently co-authored the bakery’s first cookbook, The Brown Betty Cookbook (Wiley, 2012).
is co-founder and CEO of 1DocWay, which enables doctors to interact face-to-face with patients in remote and rural settings. He has taken 1DocWay from an idea to a built product having served over 1,000 patients in rural America. Previously he was Director of Strategic Planning at CenterPointe Hospital, where he redesigned and expanded the hospital's line of outpatient clinics. Samir has launched a few other startups before, including AttendConnect and ZipCare Transportation. Samir started his career as a Business Analyst at McKinsey & Co, focused on hospitals and health insurance companies. He is a graduate of The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Aaron Montgomery is Co-Founder and COO of CarLotz, a used vehicle consignment store based in Richmond, VA. Prior to CarLotz, Aaron was a consultant with McKinsey & Company where he advised automotive and manufacturing clients on finance strategy, supply chain management, and performance improvement. Aaron has also played an active role in managing several turnarounds, acquisitions, and organizational changes in automotive retail through his work with several of the nation's largest dealer groups including the Penske, MileOne, Stewart, and Suburban Automotive Groups. Aaron graduated from Harvard University with a BA in Economics and received his MBA from Harvard Business School.
Amos Winbush III is the CEO and mastermind behind CyberSynchs, the world’s leading universal data transfer and Synchronization Company. It all began when Amos’ iPhone crashed; frustrated with no simple solution, he took charge of the problem and created a universal synchronization company with global reach.
Amos drives solutions. Under 30, Amos is one of the youngest and brightest CEO’s in the tech industry. Amos views today’s world of technology as an ecosystem supporting innovation and valuing disruptors. Through his leadership and vision, Amos quickly grew CyberSynchs into the multi-million dollar company it is today.
Amos has vision and wisdom beyond his years. He stands out with his signature-coordinated bow-ties, argyle socks and pocket squares in a sea of hoodies and jeans within the tech industry. His manicured attire brings memories of more formal business acumen and he has an attitude to match.
Amos directs his passion, energy and intellect into everything he does, including his dedication to education and improving the social condition. Understanding and devoted to providing technical tools and education in both rural and urban areas, Amos donates resources and technology to schools nationwide. He is involved with and speaks frequently to organizations that promote social change like the New York Urban League, Project Enterprise among others. Amos Winbush is also in one of ABC’s “Secret Millionaire” shows scheduled to air Fall of 2012
Amos speaks to various business groups, at tech and political events and to youth organizations. Amos continues to lead the CyberSynchs’ executive team on the path of high growth, revolutionizing the world of data synchronization for virtually any digital device.
Since the 2008 Presidential Election, the political landscape in the United States has been in the midst of a radical transformation. The shift in demographics is reshaping government policies while spurring heated debates on immigration politics and the use of government services. While the emergence of Super PACs and online contributions from grassroots donors have brought innovation to political fundraising. The use of technology, such as social media and data analytics, will forever change how presidential and congressional campaigns are built. This panel will discuss the impact of Super PACs on the elections in 2012 and how did politicians, such as President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, navigate these new and uncharted waters, as well as other trends with some of the most seasoned and up and coming industry politicians, pundits, and political fundraisers.
Cornell is President of Brilliant Corners Research and Strategies and one of the premier strategists in national progressive politics, as well as an increasingly powerful new voice in the rebranding of corporate America. Since his work helping to rebrand the Democratic Party as pollster for the Democratic National Committee (DNC) from 2005 to 2008, and his work for the Obama campaign, corporations have increasingly sought his guidance and knowledge of the new American marketplace.
Cornell has long been at the vanguard of the Democratic exploration into the role of values and culture in progressive politics - a skill set he employs in the consumer marketplace to better position corporate clients in an increasingly diverse America. Using facts to see beyond traditional ideas, Cornell’s research provided evidence for eschewing the tired left vs. right orthodoxy in favor of a new progressive politics marked by an emphasis on core values and moral and ethical realism. As the pollster for the Democratic National Committee under the pioneering Chairmanship of Governor Howard Dean, he was able to ignore beltway criticisms and take the national Party’s research in a dramatically different direction, exploring how best to challenge Republicans’ strengths among voters in supposedly untouchable “red states,” particularly “faith” or “values first” voters. Cornell's research helped rebrand and reposition the Democratic Party to better compete for voters in areas previously thought to be lost to Democrats. Under Governor Dean's leadership, Cornell helped to construct a savvy framework for the visionary 50 State Strategy that expanded the Democratic footprint on the electoral map and ultimately produced a Democratic realignment. Asked about Cornell's role, Governor Dean was quoted in the Washington Post as saying that the research conducted by brilliant corners for the DNC was "the best poll [he'd] seen in ten years."
Cornell built on his groundbreaking research with the national Party for the Obama presidential campaign. As a pollster for the Obama campaign, Cornell’s research helped to produce an unconventional campaign and stunning victory in the Democratic presidential primaries, helping to expand the traditional battleground map and change the face of the electorate by mobilizing a younger and more diverse coalition hungry for change – the surge vote.
For his achievements, the Advertising Research Foundation (ARF) Annual David Ogilvy Awards recognized Cornell and his contributions to the Obama for President Campaign by acknowledging him as a Gold Winner in the category of Government + Nonprofit Advertising. Additionally, Cornell was recognized for his stellar contribution to the field as one of the pollsters of the year by the Association of Political and Public Affairs Professionals (APPC). Heralded as an avant garde, outside-the-box thinker, Cornell has been a leader in casting the successful communication strategy as a simple compelling narrative that touches people on a visceral and intuitive level. He is a CNN contributor and is a frequent guest on radio, cable and network news shows analyzing the events of the day.
Toby Chaudhuri is a veteran political strategist who worked hard to get President Obama elected last year. He directs communications at the Campaign for America's Future's Washington headquarters where he works with progressive organizations, political campaigns and people in public office to develop messages and strategies to communicate with the public and influence public policy.
A member of Generation X, Chaudhuri arrived at college 15 years ago disillusioned, doubting politics could make a difference. He studied political science and economics and completed research later used by U.S. Senators to protect sick and hungry children from right-wing budget cuts. As a result, Chaudhuri became involved in local and statewide political campaigns, realizing in his work that he could make a difference.
Since then, Chaudhuri has managed more than $50 million in state and federal campaigns and has worked at the helm of national media operations. He fought corruption to enact historical campaign finance reforms directing strategic communications at Common Cause; took on corporate polluters to provide safe drinking water and clean air as a political appointee to President Bill Clinton; and worked to elect several principled state and federal candidates including serving as deputy press secretary to Al Gore's 2000 presidential campaign.
Before joining the Campaign for America's Future, Chaudhuri worked hard to protect children as Marian Wright Edelman's spokesman and media strategist at the Children's Defense Fund. Chaudhuri also worked hard to promote multicultural civic engagement leading a campaign to turn out tens of thousands of Massachusetts Asian American voters in the 2002 midterm election. The program he developed was adapted to engage over 1.5-million South Asian American voters across the country for the 2004 elections.
Chaudhuri has appeared in many major daily newspapers, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune and The Times of India and as a frequent commentator on National Public Radio, the BBC, NDTV and Voice of America. He was also profiled in The Boston Globe, National Journal, Campaigns & Elections Magazine and India Abroad.
Born and raised in Concord, Mass., Chaudhuri now lives in Arlington, Va.
Zerlina Maxwell is a political analyst and staff writer for Loop21.com, where she writes about national politics, candidates, as well as policy and culture issues. She writes frequently about domestic violence, sexual assault, victim blaming and gender inequality. She has consulted with the United States Department of State to promote the use of social media by students in the West Bank. Her writing has appeared in JET Magazine, on The Huffington Post, TheRoot.com Salon.com, and RawStory.com. Zerlina is also a regular contributor for Feministing.com Ebony.com, and TheGrio.com.
A prominent media advisor and political commentator, Jamal Simmons specializes in helping our clients solve public relations and strategic issues through the media.
Prior to joining The Raben Group, Jamal led New Future Communications, a company that managed public relations and strategic issues for a variety of corporate, non-profit and political clients. He has served as a senior aide to several Democratic political campaigns, including as a communications advisor to the Democratic National Committee during the 2008 campaign to elect Barack Obama President of the United States and the presidential campaigns of Vice President Al Gore and President Bill Clinton.
Jamal has held a number of strategic positions in Washington, DC, including chief of staff to Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick (D-MI), senior advisor to U.S. Senator Max Cleland (D-GA), and as a political appointee in the Clinton Administration under U.S. Trade Representative and Commerce Secretary Mickey Kantor.
Raised in Detroit, Michigan, Jamal received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Morehouse College and his Master in Public Policy degree from the Kennedy School at Harvard University. His opinions have been featured in major national news outlets, and he is a frequent guest on cable and network news shows analyzing the events of the day.
Although African Americans, Hispanics, and Native Americans equate to approximately 30 percent of the U.S. population, they comprise of only 3 percent of the executives in corporations, non-profits, and entrepreneurial ventures. For most minorities, applying to business school is daunting due to the lack of family or friends who have pursued graduate education or the astronomical expense of pursuing an MBA degree. The panel will address this issue by providing prospective minority MBA students with an overview of the Wharton School's full-time MBA program, the admissions process, and in-depth exploration of career opportunities.
Margaret is currently a Diversity Manager with McKinsey & Company. Her primary responsibilities include North American diversity recruiting efforts and managing McKinsey’s Global Black Client Service Staff (BCSS) Initiative.
In addition to McKinsey, Margaret spent 6 years at Procter & Gamble, initially in brand management. She then transitioned to the human resources area at P&G and held a variety of roles including Manager of Diversity Recruiting.
Margaret’s other professionals experiences include work at an internet start-up and 4 years in various Human Resources roles at Eli Lilly & Company.
Margaret graduated, summa cum laude, from Howard University with a B.B.A. in Marketing in 1990. While at Howard, Margaret was very active in various clubs at the School of Business.
Margaret is originally from Detroit, Michigan, and currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. In her free time she enjoys traveling to fitness spas, relaxing with a good cup of tea and spending time with friends and family.
Tiffany Gooden is Director of Recruitment & Enrollment in the Office of MBA Admissions and Financial Aid at the Wharton School. She is also responsible for diversity recruitment, including pipeline development for prospective students of color.
Immediately prior to joining Wharton, Tiffany graduated from Harvard with a Master’s degree in Education. Prior to graduate school, Tiffany spent several years in the Dartmouth College Undergraduate Admissions Office, her alma mater. In that office she focused on diversity and international student recruitment. Before transitioning to the field of admissions, Tiffany worked at the Advisory Board Company, a Washington, DC-based healthcare consulting company.
Kofi is a co-founder and director of Admit Advantage, a graduate school advisory and software company focused primarily on MBA admissions for candidates all over the world. Through its global team of alumni consultants from some of the top MBA programs including Chicago, Columbia, Wharton, Harvard, and Stanford,, Admit Advantage has worked with MBA candidates on five continents to gain acceptance into premier American and European educational institutions. With partnerships with entities like The Princeton Review, Admit Advantage is poised for additional global growth and launching additional products in 2013. In his role, Kofi develops and manages the company’s alliances, creates the strategic vision, and oversees product development.
Professionally, Kofi's experience includes co-founding a wireless, GPS-based data-mining and social networking company servicing Asia. Immediately after business school, Kofi also co-founded an educational software company targeting universities before successfully exiting the venture with his investors achieving a substantial return. Kofi began his career as a consultant for Accenture in New York City.
At Wharton, Kofi was the Chairman of The Whitney Young Conference, a Strategic Marketing teaching fellow, and the co-founder of the Wharton Comedy Club. Kofi also served as the co-Chairman of the Wharton Club of New York 2010 Business Plan Competition and is a former Vice President of Marketing and Communication for the Wharton Club of New York.
Kofi received his Bachelor of Art degree in biology from Harvard College, his Masters in Education degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and his MBA from Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania where he was a Joseph Wharton Fellow.
Kofi serves on the Beginning with the Children Foundation Senior Board and resides in New York City with his wife, Nicole.
Ronethea Williams is the Senior Manager of Recruitment & Admissions for MLT and currently manages both College and MBA Program Recruitment and Admissions. In this role, Ronethea manages MLT's pipeline and collegiate partnerships as well as leads digital marketing for MLT National. A graduate of Texas A&M University, Ronethea previously led PR and Communications for The Houston Fellows Program.