Women Championing Women

A woman is the full circle.

Within her is the power to create, nurture and transform.

Agenda Register Speakers Location Event Survey Sponsors

Katherine Spillar Executive Editor, Ms. Magazine

Claudia Spencer Partner, BDO

Dr. Susan Christy Author & Speaker

Iram Parveen Bilal Producer - JOSH

Jennifer Russell California Leadership Ctr

Val Asbury President, LifeScan (J&J)

Momina Duraid Producer, HUM Network Limited

Shelley Wolfe Executive Director, KMVT 15

Minh Ngo Board President, 100 WCF

Carlton Hill Vice President, AT&T

Maria Walker Partner, KPMG

Susan Lucas-Conwell CEO, Great Place to Work®

Naveen Malik WH Presidential Appointee

Sarah Peck US-Pakistan Women’s Council

Heidi Crebo-Rediker US Dept of State

Melanne Verveer Ambassador

January 26, 2013 | Computer History Museum | Mountain View, CA


Now in its 5th year, the Women’s Leadership Forum has become the marquee entrepreneurship event and attracts over 250+ participants and members of the local investor/entrepreneur community.

The Women’s Leadership Forum – Women Championing Womenis a one day leadership and empowerment event that provides a unique opportunity for women to recharge themselves, renew their networks, express their ambitions, and realign their goals for new levels of success. The speakers at the 5th Annual Women’s Leadership conference are amazing women who have proven track records of success in technology, finance, social enterprise, medicine, and social media in the Silicon Valley making this an event not to be missed! To celebrate the power of women, come listen to inspirational stories told by women leaders – the lessons they learnt, and the wins they enjoyed!

This event is open to all – men, women, students, OPEN SV members and non-members.

By attending this one day Forum you will:

  • Make new and renew your networks
  • Express your ambitions
  • Recharge yourselves
  • And realign your goals for new levels of success



Category Member Non-Member Student Member**
Online $45 $55 $20
On-Site $55 $65 $30

Register Now!

**Student Member Ticket holders will be required to show a current Student ID at the day of the event.


[ Top ]

09:00 AM On-site Registration
  Breakfast & Networking
10:00 AM Opening Remarks by Moazzam Chaudry, President, OPEN SV
  Welcome Remarks by Malika Junaid, Chair, Women Leadership Forum 2013
10:15 AM Morning Keynote
  Katherine Spillar - Executive Vice President, Feminist Majority Foundation; Executive Editor, Ms. Magazine
11:00 AM Break
11:15 AM Panel I - Making it to the Top!
  Val Asbury - President, North America of LifeScan/Animas Inc. - A J&J CompanyElizabeth Carlton Hill - Vice President, Device Operations and Developer Services, AT&T Claudia Spencer - CPA & Audit Partner at BDO Maria Walker - Partner, KPMG LLP
  Susan Christy, Ph.D. - Author, Consultant, Speaker
12:15 PM Mentorship & Networking Lunch Action Plan
  Jennifer Russell - President, California Leadership Center and Co-Founder, Mind Money & Meaning
  Aifra Ahmed - APPNA Northern CA chapterBeth Barany - Creativity Coach for Writers, Authors, Publishing Consultant Mina Grace Drake - Women's Career-Change & Business Coach Sukhjit Ghag - New Media Producer, Blogger, Evangelist Terri L. Griffith, Ph.D. - Professor of Management, Santa Clara University Leslie Hewitt - CEO, The WOW Factor Tina Hui - Entrepreneur, Advisor, Consultant, Philanthropist, Writer and Broadcaster Liz Kniss - Palo Alto City Council Jenny Lefebvre - WOW Program Director Anna McGrath - Founder and President, WonderWorks Leadership Consulting Lucie M. Newcomb - President and Chief Executive Officer, NewComm Global Group, Inc Minh Ngo - Board President, 100 Women Charitable Foundation Leslie Nipps - Masters NLP and Family Constellations Practitioner, Leslie Nipps Counseling
01:00 PM01:40 PM Breakout Sessions for Group DiscussionRecap of the Networking Session
02:00 PM Panel II - Follow Your Passion: Do What You Love, Love What You Do
  Iram Parveen Bilal - Director, Writer, ProducerSusan Lucas-Conwell - CEO and Board Member, Great Place to Work® Momina Duraid - Producer, HUM Network Limited Minh Ngo - Board President, 100 Women Charitable Foundation
  Shelley Wolfe - KMVT 15 Executive Director, Principal Owner of Toolbox Entertainment™
03:00 PM Afternoon Fireside Chat: Governing Women
  Sarah Peck - Executive Director of the US-Pakistan Women’s CouncilNaveen Malik - White House Presidential Appointee
  Susan Lucas-Conwell - CEO and Board Member, Great Place to Work®
03:50 PM Concluding Remarks
04:00 PM Afternoon Tea & Networking

Katherine Spillar - Executive Vice President, Feminist Majority Foundation; Executive Editor, Ms. Magazine

Katherine Spillar is the Executive Vice President of the Feminist Majority Foundation and the Feminist Majority, national organizations working for women’s equality, empowerment, and non-violence. One of the founders, Spillar has been a driving force in executing the organizations’ diverse programs securing women’s rights both domestically and globally since its inception in 1987. She has played a leading role in national and state level campaigns to win women’s rights legislation. Spillar leads the organization’s efforts to counter the effects of extremist anti-abortion groups that target women’s reproductive health clinics. She has been key in the Feminist Majority Foundation’s Campaign to Stop Gender Apartheid in Afghanistan to counter the Taliban’s abuse of women; for this work, the organization was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002.

Spillar is the Executive Editor of Ms. magazine, which the Feminist Majority Foundation took over publishing in 2001. Under her oversight, Ms. has increased its investigative reporting, winning the prestigious “Maggie Award” for best feature article for its investigation into the network of extremists connected to Scott Roeder, who murdered Dr. George Tiller. Spillar led the magazine’s investigative report on human trafficking and working conditions akin to indentured servitude in the garment factories on the US Territory of the Northern Mariana Islands, exposing the industry’s and Island government’s ties to former Congressman Tom DeLay and disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, and leading to passage of labor and immigration reforms in Congress.

Spillar is a trained economist and researcher and a specialist in community organizing. She speaks to diverse audiences nationwide on a broad range of domestic and international feminist topics and appears frequently on television and radio. She has appeared on NPR’s Morning Edition, 60 Minutes, the Rachel Maddow Show, NPR’s Fresh Air with Terri Gross and Tell Me More with Michel Martin, the O’Reilly Factor, CNN, ABC Nightly News, CBS News, NBC, FOX, the Tavis Smiley Show, Politically Incorrect, and Hannity & Colmes.

Top ]

Morning Panel: Making it to the Top!

Corporate Focus Panel: This panel will discuss how successful top executives reached the heights of their accomplishments. They will talk about their journeys and efforts, and make recommendations for women who are pursuing leadership roles. Come prepared to be MOTIVATED!

Val Asbury - President, North America of LifeScan/Animas Inc. - A J&J Company

Top ]

Val is a proven commercial leader who drives high performance growth with keen expertise on customer and marketplace dynamics. Her General Management experience has been developed through a diverse range of assignments with increasing responsibility outside and inside the Johnson & Johnson family of companies. Val’s experience spans virtually every sector (Hybrid (consumer/medical‐device/pharmaceutical), Consumer, Medical‐Device, Biopharmaceutical, Pharmaceutical, Shared Service, Orthopedic, Capital Equipment, Durable Medical Equipment) and function (Sales, Marketing, Sales Strategy/Trade Marketing, Acquisitions, Mergers, Alliances, Business Development, Group Purchasing Organizations, Integrated Delivery Networks, Managed Care, Pharmacy Benefit Managers, Mail Order, Internet, Retail, Distributor, Wholesale, Independent Drug, Government, Reimbursement, Legislative Influence, Pricing and Contracting.) Val’s trademarks are her tireless effort to create and deliver meaningful solutions for the company, customer and patient and her unyielding work to build strong, accountable and empowered teams.

Val has been with Johnson & Johnson since 1998 and has experience in five different Johnson & Johnson companies that include Centocor, Johnson & Johnson Healthcare Systems, Ethicon Endo‐Surgery and Vision Care (Vistakon). In her current role of President, NA for LifeScan and Animas, Val oversees a multiple billion dollar franchise and approximately 800 employees. She is responsible for driving strategic top and bottom line growth that will position the company for long term success and broaden the range of solutions for people with Diabetes. Val leads the NA Board and is a member of the Global Management Board.

Val holds a bachelor’s degree in Nursing from the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing. She also completed Executive Education programs at Xavier University for Business Statistics and Marketing; Penn State’s Finance for Strategic Management program; and Harvard’s Business Marketing Strategy program. Val graduated from Johnson & Johnson’s LeAD (Leadership Accelerated Development) program in 2007. Val resides in Northern California with her 16 year old son Evan and spends her free time volunteering and serving on local not-for-profit boards.

Elizabeth Carlton Hill - Vice President, Device Operations and Developer Services, AT&T

Top ]


 Hill has over 25 years of experience in the wireless industry. She began her career with BellSouth Enterprises and had strategic planning roles ranging from Regulatory Planning to Device OEM Management, and New Product Development. As Executive Director of New Product Development, she oversaw the launch of BellSouth’s first WAP Service, the overhaul and re-launch of the Wireless Prepaid service and the end to end automation of BellSouth Mobility eCommerce sales and service.

When Cingular was formed in 2001, Hill was named Executive Director of Internet Services and Application Development. She was responsible for strategic vision; content, architecture and functional evolution; and operational direction of all customer facing internet services including the new Cingular.com. Hill coordinated all Intranet services and desktop delivery within Cingular, and sourced, evolved and managed all corporate extranets, XML interfaces to third party channels, and interfaces to parent (SBC and BLS) web sites. She was also responsible for the overall management and coordination of Cingular’s wireless data application developers vision, program and portal delivery interface.

In the CTO organization at Cingular Hill established and led the process to coordinate and manage all interdepartmental product development teams. She was also responsible for marketing and developing New Voice Services such as PTT, Answer Tones and Smart Limits and the coordination of Converged Product development with BLS and SBC. In 2007 Hill was named Vice President of Product Management, Voice Products and Affiliate Marketing.

Currently Hill oversees operational issues associated with customer devices on the AT&T consumer networks. She also manages the AT&T Developer Program, an award winning application developer support organization with more than thirty thousand members.

Hill is a graduate of Yale University and Concord University Law School. She is a member of the California Bar and resides in Atlanta, GA with her son and daughter.



Claudia Spencer - CPA & Audit Partner at B


Caludia has over 30 years of public accounting experience and specializes in the software/technology, consumer, manufacturing & distribution and services industries. She is the Bay Area Practice Leader for the Employee Benefit Plan and Not-for-Profit practices. Her clients range from small businesses to large diversified multinational entities. Claudia has substantial experience in SEC filings, initial public offerings, private placements, stock options and complex debt/equity transactions. Claudia is involved in the Firm’s Continuing Professional Education program as an instructor and coordinator, and has spoken before other organizations on a variety of accounting and finance topics. She has also served as an accounting instructor at the college level. She is affiliated with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), California Society of CPAs, Institute of Management Accountants, Council of Business Advisors, and Financial Women’s Association. Some of her clients have been SumTotal Systems, San Francisco Fine Foods, Lyris UK, IntelePeer, Inc., Monterey Gourmet Foods, Rimini Street, Inc., Patron Tequila and Sonic Solutions. Claudia has a M.A. in Taxation and a B.A in Public Accounting. In addition to her public accounting experience, Claudia spent two years in industry as a controller for a manufacturing company.

Maria Walker - Partner, KPMG LLP

Maria is a partner in KPMG’s Audit practice serving venture capital and private equity firms and their portfolio companies in the technology and life sciences sectors and has more than 20 years of experience in finance. Before re-joining KPMG in 2008, Maria was Chief Financial Officer of Lightspeed Venture Partners and prior to that Administrative Partner and Chief Operating Officer of Forward Ventures. In those roles she was a member senior executive teams raising and managing in excess of $1.7 billion. Her responsibilities included financial reporting, investor relations, structuring and negotiating financings of venture-backed companies and the management of investor exits from those investments. Maria was also a member of the board of directors of MedicineNet (acquired by WebMD). Maria regularly works with entrepreneurs providing guidance about venture funding and has been a speaker at investor and entrepreneur focused events including the Merrill Lynch Private Equity CFO Conference, Intel Capital CEO Summit and various AlwaysOn Conferences.

Maria holds a bachelor of arts degree in economics from the University of California, San Diego. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. 

Susan Christy, Ph.D. - Author, Consultant, Speaker

Susan Christy has thirty years’ experience consulting for corporations and universities. She specializes in leadership and “people skills” for scientists, engineers, managers, and university staff and faculty. Susan was as tenured Professor of Psychology at Asnuntuck College in Connecticut before becoming President of Christy Consulting, Inc. She has served as Vice President of HighGain, Inc., a San Francisco training firm; a TV talk-show host for the program – REACHING the Disabled; a Trustee of The California Institute of Integral Studies; a Board Member of the American Association of University Women, Positive Resource Center, and Keep Your Freedom/Keep Your Dreams.

Her volunteer work includes Tsunami Relief work in India where she worked in two fishing villages and raised $21,000 to feed hungry people, build 10 houses and buy fishing nets for a whole village. Susan continues to work with the Navajo and Mojave Indians to help them preserve their indigenous cultures.

She is the author of Working Effectively with Faculty: A Guidebook for Higher Education Staff and Managers and is currently consulting and speaking for university and medical school staff and faculty across the country (Stanford, University of Michigan, Lehigh University, UCSF, UC Davis, University of San Francisco, Oregon Health and Science University, Notre Dame, San Jose State University and many others). [ Top ]
Afternoon Panel: Follow Your Passion: Do What You Love, Love What You Do!

Media and Entrepreneurship Panel: This panel will be an inspirational talk where panelists ranging from film producers to entrepreneurs will share their journeys of hard work, success and losses, all underlined with their passion for achievement! Come prepared to be IMPASSIONED!

Iram Parveen Bilal - Director, Writer, Producer

Raised in Nigeria and Pakistan, Iram is conscious of the rare opportunity and voice she has on the filmmaking playground. She has directed internationally recognized, award-winning short films; JOSH is her first feature film that recently premiered in Mumbai, India and was granted the prestigious Women in Film fund. JOSH is in the process of getting released. Other projects in development have received attention by Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP), The Academy’s Nicholl Writing Fellowship, Mumbai Sankalan Lab, Film Independent and Women in Film. Prominent awards and honors include the Thomas J. Watson Fellowship, Stark Special Project Scholarship, Mabel Beckman Leadership Award, Paul Studenski Fellowship and the Dean’s Cup.

Iram has a B.S. Honors from CalTech and a Masters in Fine Arts from the Peter Stark Producing Program at USC. She enjoys dancing, reading, traveling and just being free! Go to www.iramparveenbilal.com for more information on Iram and her work.

Susan Lucas-Conwell - CEO and Board Member, Great Place to Work®

Susan Lucas-Conwell is Chief Executive Officer at Great Place to Work®. An accomplished business leader, Susan provides keen perspective on how building and maintaining great workplace culture drives business success.

Prior to joining Great Place to Work, Susan had been CEO of SVForum and has held executive positions with Cartier International, Bausch & Lomb’s Ray-Ban and General Mills. She graduated with Honors from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, holds a Master’s Degree in Economic History from Johns Hopkins University and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from The Wharton School

She is married, has four daughters and lives in Palo Alto. In her spare time, she is a self-diagnosed sports junkie - she watches everything from pro baseball to the Tour de France and girls’ lacrosse and gets up early to run, bike and row.

Top ]


Momina Duraid - Producer, HUM Network Limited

Momina Duraid is a well known name in each and every household of Pakistan and the rest of the world where ever Urdu drama is seen and appreciated. Her name, as a television producer is considered to be synonymous with quality entertainment. She is also a writer, a lyricist and the only female CEO of one of the largest private television production houses in Pakistan. Consecutively, four years awarded the best producer at Lux Style Awards and three years at the Media Awards, she has won various other awards for her productions in mulitiple categories like Best Director, Best Writer, Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Song of the year. She was also given the Nesvita Woman of Strength Award. Her television productions like Humsafar, Dastaan, Ishq Junoon Deewangi, Khamoshian, Mano Salwa, Durr e Shehwar, Shehr e Zaat, Kuch dil nay kaha, Malaal, Maat, Meray Paas Paas, Mera Naseeb and Zindagi gulzaar hay have earned her world fame in Urdu Drama Serial Productions.

Momina Duraid is an MBA graduate from LUMS (Lahore University of Management Sciences) and has done her second masters in Public Administration. She is famous for her choice of subjects for the television screen that provide a solid foundation for empowerment of women and create awareness of women rights in the developing countries. Momina Duraid is a mother of five children and is the wife of Duraid Qureshi, CEO of HUM Network Limited, and the daughter-in-law of Sultana Siddiqui, president of HUM Network Limited.

Top ]


Minh Ngo - Board President, 100 Women Charitable Foundation

Minh is a passionate advocate for women, children, and families and currently serves on the Board of Directors of Friends of UNFPA (United Nations Population Fund), Board President of the 100 Women Charitable Foundation; Special Advisor to San Jose State University’s Research Institute for Foster Youth Initiatives (RIFYI); and Member of Silicon Valley Community Foundation’s Out-of-School Education Strategy Advisory Committee.

A graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and Santa Clara University’s School of Law, Minh has more than 13 years of executive leadership experience in both the public and private sectors. Through her board and advisory roles, Minh provides strategic guidance to non-governmental agencies, philanthropic organizations, and educational institutions on capacity building initiatives that maximize their ability to impact their local and global community.

Top ]


Shelley Wolfe - KMVT 15 Executive Director, Principal Owner of Toolbox Entertainment™

Shelley has over 23 years of professional entertainment industry and non-profit management experience. With a strong proactive work ethic and outgoing personality, Shelley has gained a reputation known for exceeding expectations. She has always possessed a passion and desire to inform, educate and be a leader and in 2012, she fostered her skills through the Leadership Mountain View.

As Executive Director for KMVT15 Mountain View Community Television (Silicon Valley Media) her primary responsibilities include raising funds, awareness and sustainability to further the efforts of community media through terrestrial television and online media outlets. Shelley has been recognized numerous times for her production work and the station has garnered critical acclaim including a number of individual WAVE and Hometown awards. She has also been honored with the distinguished Brian Wilson award for Mentorship.

Shelley’s other passion is music. Her desire to inform and educate individuals about all forms of art resulted in the creation of Toolbox Entertainment™. Toolbox is an all-encompassing metaphor to bring like minds together in one location to create an artist collaborative that also includes fans.

Along with her love for music, Shelley travels and works internationally. She is a member of the Association of Professional Fundraisers and also serves on the Alliance for Community Media Western Board of Directors. She has a strong desire to create volunteer efforts, raise humanitarian and cultural awareness and create social change. In the past, Shelley has done so by supporting human rights and the global initiative of freedom of speech for individuals.

Top ]


Afternoon Fireside Chat: Governing Women

Naveen Malik - White House Presidential Appointee


Naveen Malik is a presidential appointee in the administration of President Barack Obama. She proudly serves her country at the Department of Defense, in the office of the secretary of Defense, where she was selected for the prestigious White House Liaison Office Defense Fellowship. In this capacity, she worked for the undersecretary of defense for policy as the country director for the GCC, and a country director for Pakistan, as well as for the assistant secretary of defense for Legislative Affairs as a special assistant. She now works for the DOD’s Task Force for Business and Stability Operations (TFBSO) as an industrial investment project manager, and is currently forward deployed with the NATO/CSTC-A DCOM-SPO Logistics Operation at Camp Eggers in Kabul.

Prior to her appointment, Naveen was the new media director for Illinois as part of the Obama for America ’08 presidential campaign in Chicago. In this capacity, she executed the new media strategy for the Illinois field operation, which was responsible for signing up over 10,000 volunteers for export to five surrounding battleground swing states—four of which were won—as well as for shattering fund-raising records. Upon completion of the campaign, she was selected to work on the 2009 Presidential Inaugural Committee.

Naveen represents Muslim-American women on the White House Office of Public Engagement’s “Kitchen Cabinet” on Muslim-American affairs, and is involved with the NSS Global Engagement Directorate’s Pakistani Diaspora Working Group. She has a B.Sc in Communication Sciences from Northwestern University.

Sarah Peck - Executive Director of the US-Pakistan Women’s Council


Sarah Peck is a career diplomat from Boston, Massachusetts. She is currently the Executive Director of the US-Pakistan Women’s Council, a public-private partnership between American University (AU), the U.S. State Department, and OPEN (the Organization of Pakistani Entrepreneurs). The Council is based at AU in Washington, D.C., and is working with U.S. and Pakistani companies and institutions to advance economic opportunities for women in Pakistan. Sarah has extensive experience on regional issues. She previously served as the Leader of the Political Unit at the Officer of Pakistan Affairs at the U.S. State Department, where she focused on external politics, the upcoming Pakistani general election, human rights, and bilateral relations between Pakistan and the United States. Before joining the desk, she worked as a Pearson Fellow for in-coming Secretary of State Kerry at the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, with a focus on Afghanistan and Pakistan. She helped organize senate hearings on those countries and contributed to staff reports on assistance in Afghanistan and Pakistan. 

Sarah began her diplomatic career as a political officer in Prague, where she reported on Czech efforts to promote democracy. She also served as a consular officer in Manila. Sarah has received numerous meritorious honor awards for political reporting, leadership, and promoting justice in Afghanistan. In 2010, she was nominated for the Robert C. Fraser Memorial Award for her policy-related work in Afghanistan. Prior to entering the State Department, Sarah worked as an attorney in Boston and Paris, France. She is a graduate of the University of Florida, and Northeastern University School of Law.


Heidi Crebo-Rediker - Chief Economist, Department of State, United States Government

Heidi Crebo-Rediker joined the State Department as its first Chief Economist in March 2012. Previously, she served as Chief, International Finance and Economics for Senate Committee on Foreign Relations. Separately, she advised Committee Chairman Senator John Kerry on domestic and international economic issues.

From 2007-2009, Crebo-Rediker was the founding Co-Director of the Global Strategic Finance Initiative at the New America Foundation in Washington, DC. In 2007, Crebo-Rediker returned to the U.S. from Europe where she spent nearly two decades as a senior investment banker at several leading investment banks. Over her career, she managed businesses ranging from European Debt Capital Markets, Emerging Markets Debt Capital Markets, to Sovereign, Supranational and Public Sector Banking.

Her investment banking roles in Emerging Markets primarily focused on Russia, the Former Soviet Union and Central and Eastern Europe. From the earliest days of post-communist transition, Crebo-Rediker led a wide range of activities to promote markets, privatization and entrepreneurship, and went on to structure and lead many pioneering transactions in these markets while based in London, Moscow and Sakhalin Island.

Crebo-Rediker was named one of the “Top 25 Women in Business” by The Wall Street Journal Europe and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatham House). She is a graduate of Dartmouth College and the London School of Economics. Her views on financial and economic matters have been carried in many forums, including CNN, BBC, Wall Street Journal, The National Interest, The New Republic, Forbes, Financial News, and elsewhere.

 Top ]



Melanne Verveer - Ambassador-at-Large, Global Women's Issues

President Barack Obama appointed Melanne Verveer as Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues. The President’s decision to create a position of Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues is unprecedented, and reflects the elevated importance of these issues to the President and his entire Administration. In her capacity as Director of the Department of State’s new office on Global Women’s Issues, Ambassador Verveer coordinates foreign policy issues and activities relating to the political, economic and social advancement of women around the world. She mobilizes concrete support for women’s rights and political and economic empowerment through initiatives and programs designed to increase women’s and girls’ access to education and health care, to combat violence against women and girls in all its forms, and to ensure that women's rights are fully integrated with human rights in the development of U.S. foreign policy.

Ambassador Verveer most recently served as Chair and Co-CEO of Vital Voices Global Partnership, an international nonprofit she co-founded. Vital Voices invests in emerging women leaders and works to expand women’s roles in generating economic opportunity, promoting political participation, and safeguarding human rights. Prior to her work with Vital Voices, Ambassador Verveer served as Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff to the First Lady in the Clinton Administration and was chief assistant to then-First Lady Hillary Clinton in all her wide-ranging international activities to advance women’s rights and further social development, democracy and peace-building initiatives. She also led the effort to establish the President’s Interagency Council on Women. Prior to her time in the White House, Ambassador Verveer served in a number of leadership roles in public policy organizations and as legislative staff.

Ambassador Verveer has a B.A. and M.A. from Georgetown University. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, Women’s Foreign Policy Group, and numerous other organizations.

Top ]


Networking & Mentorship Lunch:

In this one 30 minutes powerful exercise session, Jennifer Russell will help you re-assess yourself, your passions and your goals and start building your peer-mentoring community from who you are, from inside-out.
You will see your existing network throgh the eyes of a leader, and identify new ways of creating powerful inspiring connections to serve and transform the world from where you are, whether you an entrepreneur, a corporate worker, or a stay-at-home mom.
You will create a new strategy and an action plan to leverage your vision and galvanize your community.
With the help of the featured panelists and special guests, Jennifer will facilitate the exercise and walk us through the results so we get grounded in our passion, and start being the change we seek to create in the world now.
Meet with the panelists, make connections and feel empowered.

Jennifer Russell - Executive Coach, California Leadership and Co-Founder of Mind, Money & Meaning Entrepreneurs Program


 supports the entrepreneurial spirit in us all through her dedication to creating contribution-based communities and new paradigms of leadership that are designed to transform business into a life nourishing endeavor that is necessary for the evolution of mankind.

As a Co-Founder of Mind Money & Meaning she conducts a series of year-long programs for teaching entrepreneurs the source code of personal and professional success. These programs combine her knowledge and expertise in the area of sales, marketing, leadership, collaborative systems, NLP, and the mechanics of change. She is an executive coach, facilitator, and speaker and a dyed-in-the-wool entrepreneur.

Before beginning work with her partner in life and in business Bryan Franklin, she worked exclusively in high impact start-ups in the biotech sector, most recently as president of an environmental chemical company, bringing over 40 new products to market. Her dedication to the intersection between creativity and productivity made her famous for “getting more done by accident than most people get done on purpose.”

Top ]


Aifra Ahmed - APPNA Northern CA chapter

Association of Physicians of Pakistani Descent of North America (APPNA) is a professional organization which promotes excellence in healthcare, research, education, and humanitarian activities. It facilitates the transfer of health care expertise and resources to deserving communities. It also provides advocacy, caters to cultural and social needs, is a vehicle for charitable projects, and seeks to nurture young physicians.

Top ]


Beth Barany - Creativity Coach for Writers, Authors, Publishing Consultant

Beth Barany is a writer’s coach, a keynote speaker and a marketing advisor for writers and publishers. The author of the bestselling books, The Writer’s Adventure Guide: 12 Stages to Writing Your Book and Overcome Writer’s Block, she also publishes the monthly digital magazine, Author Entrepreneurship Magazine, to help authors create successful and sustainable careers. Beth is the award-winning novelist of the young adult epic fantasy, Henrietta The Dragon Slayer, the first of a 3-book series.

As a Master NLP Practitioner and Certified Creativity Coach, Beth has helped authors get their books written, edited and published for over 12 years, as well as guided them in effectively marketing and selling their work. Five of her clients’ books have been best-sellers.

Sign up for Beth's newsletter and receive her free Writer's Motivation Mini-Course at www.BethBarany.com. Also receive a free subscription to Author Entrepreneurship Magazine at www.authorentrepreneurship.com.

Top ]


Mina Grace Drake - Women's Career-Change & Business Coach

Mina Grace Drake is a writer, sought-after speaker, and professional career and business coach dedicated to empowering women to create their own financial security doing the work they love. Mina Grace shares the practical steps and inspiring insights on her journey from an unfulfilling yet ‘successful’ corporate job to launching passion-driven business ventures with top tier clients like Microsoft, Nike, Glamour Magazine, and CNN. She is the founder of ‘Angels in the Marketplace’, a non-profit dedicated to teaching displaced women around the globe entrepreneurial skills so they can afford to educate their children and rebuild communities. Her forthcoming book, ‘Catch A Fire! Ignite your Life’s Passion, Purpose, and Profession’, is set for release later this year.

Top ]


Sukhjit Ghag - New Media Producer, Blogger, Evangelist

Sukhjit Ghag is a new media producer with a background in broadcast video production. Her work has appeared on Travel Channel, Fine Living Network, HGTV and TechTV. Sukhjit was an early adopter of Web 2.0 tools used to create and distribute content and build and interact with community. Her work with a number of startups in the Bay Area and love for technology lead to a position at Sony Electronics where she had the coolest title in the company, “Blogger and Evangelist”.

Today Sukhjit is part of Desk.com, a Salesforce.com company where she manages the video, social media and events plans. She enjoys finding ways to bring quality and useful content to the Desk.com audience and to find new and innovative ways to do it. You can also find her on her own video blog, sukhjit.me

Top ]


Terri L. Griffith, Ph.D. - Professor of Management, Santa Clara University

Terri is an expert on how you make combined technology and organization decisions and then work these changes into your organization. These ideas are outlined in her recent book, The Plugged-In Manager: Get in Tune with Your People, Technology, and Organization to Thrivei>. She is also one of the 100 honored members of the 2012 Silicon Valley Women of Influence.

Prof. Griffith reaches a broad audience through her speaking, workshops, and writing. She is a regular contributor to her own blog, Technology and Organizations; and has written for the Wall Street Journal and GigaOM's WebWorkerDaily. The research behind these efforts is published in top management journals and some has been funded by the National Science Foundation. In 2011-2012, she served as the chair of the University Communication & Collaboration Taskforce.

Top ]


Leslie Hewitt - CEO, The WOW Factor

Dr. Leslie Hewitt, D.C. is the CEO for the women of wellness community TheWOWfactor, speaker, author, aerobics instructor, yoga teacher, and Owner of Anatomy Power Wellness Studio. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and a Doctorate of Chiropractic. She worked in Corporate America for 10 years doing finance and owned two fitness management companies. Concerned about the choices women are making for their healthcare, Dr. Hewitt developed a creative way to inspire women. She is facilitating the nurturing co-creative efforts of other female doctors and practitioners that are discouraged with the current sick care system. Dr. Hewitt’s life work is to remind people that healing is an inside job

Top ]


Tina Hui - Entrepreneur, Advisor, Consultant, Philanthropist, Writer and Broadcaster

Tina Hui is an entrepreneur, advisor, consultant, philanthropist, writer and broadcaster who is passionate about connecting people, ideas and resources so that creativity and opportunities meet. Tina has a background in motion picture PR with Warner Bros, Warner Independent and Fox Atomic studios to marketing and driving double digit million dollar revenues at Hewlett-Packard and working with many different organizations and startups from non profits like Ronald McDonald House, Project by Project and Social Media Club to startups and companies such as Eat24Hours, babelverse, MyStream, One Medical Group, blipboard and Fileblaze and being the US Editor of GirlsNGadgets and is a true believer that people should find work that is interesting and of value, even if it is just in the form of helping other ideas become a reality. We all spend so many hours at work and they are better spent and more progressive if the work is enjoyed. An advocate for enriching life and always learning by seeing things from different perspectives, Tina can be found spending spare time with loved ones, colleagues and making new acquaintances while relaxing, taking trips, on adventures like skydiving and taking classes on learning how to hang glide or make beads from old magazine articles and is always attempting to inspire others to also live more fulfilling lives and achieve their dreams.

Top ]


Liz Kniss - Palo Alto City Council

Liz Kniss, has a long and well regarded career in politics, having served in three jurisdictions over the last 25 years.

First serving as a member of the Palo Alto School Board, and then moving on to the Palo Alto City Council where she served twice as Mayor. While in that office, she fostered Palo Alto becoming the first city in the US to have a site on the Internet.

Elected to the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors in 2000, she served as President of the Board in 2005 and 2009.

Prior to that, Kniss was at Sun Microsystems as an External Marketing Manager in the SunLabs division. She has been named one of the Valley’s Most Influential Women by the Business Journal, and San Jose magazine called her a “Path Finder”. Among her goals for women is encouraging more young women to run for office, citing that “we haven’t yet reached 25%” of those elected.

Kniss often speaks at local colleges and companies to urge more women to get involved and run for office. She recently ran, once more, for the Palo Alto City Council, garnering the highest vote count ever recorded in that city.

Top ]


Jenny Lefebvre - WOW Program Director

Jenny is the WOW Program Director. She started with The WOW Factor in March 2012 and “showed up” with the intention to start a career from her heart and soul. After almost a decade in retail as a manager, she became discouraged with the rat race of corporate america. She saved enough money to quit spontaneously and take time to get back to health with yoga sessions weekly. She began to set an intention to “attract” the perfect position that would fully utilize her spiritual gifts.

Jenny shows up 100% and role models what that looks like. Like a burst of energy into the room, she brings a life force vitality that is contagious. Her vibration is high and she is living out loud. She didn’t wait for Dr. Hewitt to delegate tasks, nor did she apply for a position. Jenny created her own job description, job title, and stepped fully into her life’s work at The WOW Factor. The WOW conference has her personality and energy splashed throughout and she shows up embodied with heart and soul.

Top ]


Anna McGrath - Founder and President, WonderWorks Leadership Consulting

With over 20 years of experience in the U.K. and U.S.A, as a successful speaker, executive, senior corporate leader, strategic consultant, executive coach and presenter, Anna is a smart, engaging, dynamic speaker. She works with teams to inspire them and give them the tools they need to be authentic 21st century conscious leaders, in a fast-changing global economy. Anna is the San Francisco facilitator and community leader for "Awakening the Dreamer" at the Pachamama Alliance Organization and the Four Years Go initiative. She supports organizations and individuals to uncover how and where they would like to make a positive I.M.P.A.C.T™ throughout the globe.

Top ]


Lucie M. Newcomb - President and Chief Executive Officer, NewComm Global Group, Inc

Lucie Newcomb, M.A., is President and Chief Executive Officer of The NewComm GlobalGroup, Inc., an international management consulting firm specializing in Global Business. A former resident of South Africa and England, she specializes in the EMEA region and Emerging Markets worldwide.She has been opening markets for market leaders, such as Cisco, IBM, Johnson& Johnson and former startups, such as Quote.com and Marvell. She specializes in Global Marketing Strategy and Business Design; Change and Transformation; and Global Leadership programs. Lucie is a Mentor for TechWomen, a U.S. State Department exchange program with the Middle East and North Africa, and US Market Access Center, a market entry accelerator for foreign-based startups, and was the Founding Chair of the GraceNet Mentoring program for women in technology. She is an accredited coach in the Hall-Tonna (Values) Inventory and a certified coach in the Leadership Practices Inventory, based on the work of Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner's definitive book, The Leadership Challenge.

Lucie holds a Bachelor's degree from U.C. Berkeley, where she is an Extension instructor, and a Master's degree in Leadership from St. Mary’s College of California

Top ]


Leslie Nipps - Masters NLP and Family Constellations Practitioner, Leslie Nipps Counseling

An astronomer, psychologist, priest and theologian, Leslie serves her community as a Neuro-linguistic Programming (NLP) and Family Constellations Practitioner. Her curiosity and amazement at the human and cosmic condition, coupled with her faith gives Leslie a rich combination of experience and engagement to help her clients focus on their practical dilemmas.

Graduating from Cornell University, Leslie pursued her interests for studying the human mind as a clinical psychologist. She was ordained a priest in the Episcopal Church in 1995 and has worked with poor, struggling country parishes, as well as large, well-endowed urban parishes. Her experience gives her an array of human experience in churches: births, marriages, deaths, conflict, growth, discovery, creativity.

Top ]


Event Survey

Your feedback is important to us! Please fill out the Women Leadership Forum 2013 Survey to help us improve our future events. Thank you!

Top ]

Visionary Sponsors

Patron Sponsors