Archives

Rachael Palmer

As the Head of VC and Startup Partnerships, Rachael drives Google’s strategic partnerships with top VCs and Startups across the EMEA region. Her day-to-day involves collaborating with EMEA’s major VC funds, working to define Google’s VC strategy, and helping startups partner across Google’s product areas. Rachael is dedicated to creating an inclusive and representative workplace. She helps drive Google’s approach to diversity, equity, and inclusion through participation in action committees that outline recruitment practices, and works on retention and internal community building efforts. Rachael advises the Black Googler Network and is an active lead in advocating for increased fertility benefits through Google’s Women’s Network. She also leads Google’s diversity recruiting efforts at Wharton. Rachael has been a featured speaker at Google’s first EMEA “State of Black Women” Conference in the UK and the Wharton Women in Business Conference. In addition, she enjoys mentoring minority candidates in their business school applications.

Kathy Quashie

Joining Vodafone recently, Kathy has already driven positive change by stepping in to be the UK Chair for the Multicultural channel and has become one of the leaders for the Women in Business UK Network. In her previous roles across Telecoms, Kathy always took a lead role across D&I by creating awareness to improve processes to support a wider inclusive database, resulting in a larger pool of diverse candidates to put through the selection process. Having been in most of her leadership roles as the only BAME female leader running large P&L businesses across Tech and Software, she undertook the role to sponsor and mentor BAME and female professionals. In addition, she has also been involved in many external programs promoting, encouraging and recognizing both BAME and Women networks across the UK

Loreal Torres

Loreal has been devoted to elevating diversity and inclusion in the workplace throughout her career. She initiated a D&I program at her previous company, focusing on embracing and highlighting diversity in the organisation and creating a sense of belonging. Her role was to increase diversity and retention of diverse colleagues through programming and recruitment efforts, partnering with diversity-focused programs. At her current role with Vested, Loreal is looking to work with diversity-focused search firms to fill senior roles, and is working with colleagues to partner with diverse organisations at colleges. She is part of the Syracuse University Mentor Mentee Association, and participates in the Young Women’s Leadership Network, among other diversity networks and initiatives.

Hina Nagarajan

As MD for Africa Emerging Markets, Hina leads one of Diageo’s most dynamic and culturally diverse regions, allowing her to role model D&I practice through prioritizing diverse local teams. She runs a cross-country task force for business-critical issues, leveraging the best skills from several countries to resolve problems and build inclusion, and to accelerate African talent development. Hina mentors colleagues, and contributes to REACH, a support group for ethnic minorities. This includes discussions, ideas and experience sharing, events planning and festival celebrations. She also contributes to WeQual Women’s Group UK, Women for Women Beijing, and mentors through the  Menttium Cross Corporate Mentoring Platform.

Cecil Adjalo

Cecil is the UK Managing Partner at Hiberus and Director at Foundervine. He is a passionate advocate for publicizing the D&I agenda though online media and events to a varied demographic. At Hiberus in 2019, Cecil sponsored a ‘Build an App in a Day’ event in collaboration with Microsoft, targeted at getting more BAME people interested in technology. He has been instrumental in the growth of Foundervine, a social enterprise which helps diverse founders build startups from scratch. He has spoken publicly about the need for diversity in entrepreneurship and about black innovation, and he helped organize and run four weekend entrepreneurial programs to upskill BAME entrepreneurs among other initiatives in schools and universities.

Debbie Ellison

Debbie sits on Geometry UK ExCo, WPP’s end-to-end Creative Commerce agency. As one of a handful of female Chief Digital Officers in industry, Debbie is pioneering transformational changes through people-first, technology solutions enabling clients to grow in the fast-paced space of commerce. She actively encourages diversity in business and sits on WPP’s Inclusion Board and on the steering committee of WPP Roots, championing greater ethnic and cultural diversity across WPP operating companies. She launched Geometry Roots and The Incubator, an “agency within an agency” experience encouraging students from BAME or low socio-economic backgrounds to pursue careers in creativity, technology and advertising.  She is a member of Inspiring The Future, a government initiative connecting professionals with students. Debbie has lectured at Condé Nast Design College, Cambridge University and speaks regularly at schools. Named Industry Shaper 2019 by the global Women in Marketing Awards, Debbie was voted an IPA Woman of the Future in 2016.

Kashif Zafar

Kashif is one of the Global Markets Executive Committee sponsors of the ELLEvate programme which is focused on female employees in the Global Markets business of Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank. This programme aims to further develop the skills and network of female colleagues within the Markets business, giving them exposure to the management team and contributing to enhancing gender diversity and internal mobility within the firm.  Kashif is a founding Board Member of the American Pakistan Foundation, serves on the Board of Trustees of Middlebury College and is an International Trustee of the International House in New York.   Kashif also serves on the Advisory Board of South Asian Youth Action (SAYA), an organisation focused on building a strong sense of belonging among the South Asian American youth and providing them the tools to thrive academically and professionally. 

Sumati Sharma

As VP Product & Commercial, Sumati is responsible for Product, Pricing and Data along with accountability for strategy, project delivery at Virgin Holidays. She has previously held roles as VP – Strategy, and VP Financial Planning at Virgin Atlantic, and is a Chartered Accountant, trained at EY. Sumati plays a central role on the Be Yourself Steering Committee at Virgin Atlantic, driving the diversity & inclusion strategy. Sumati has championed a data-led focus on measurement and target development, influencing the setting of published targets on women in leadership and BAME representation. Sumati is Co-Chair of the Women in Aviation & Aerospace Charter Board, supported by UK Government, working towards gender equality. Since its inception, Sumati has encouraged more than 200 organizations to sign up and pledge commitment to ensuring gender balance. Sumati regularly represents the airline at networking events, including at the House of Commons, and Women of the Year Awards.

Fenil Khiroya

Fenil drives the diversity and inclusion agenda with the Europe Leadership Team, and acts in an advisory role to employee networks on how to progress D&I across the region. In her previous position at UBS, she spearheaded the case for a BAME network, resulting in the bank’s first ethnicity network, which Fenil chaired and formed a committee for. At Standard Chartered Bank, she works with the senior management team, D&I champions and network chairs to support all forms of diversity to build a culture of inclusivity.  She has promoted and driven the inclusive leadership training for managers and piloted the Men Advocating Real Change Programme in the UK. Fenil works with the senior management team to embed D&I as part of the business imperative.  She is a member of the House of Lords’ Multicultural Professional Network, is on the Board of Trustees for one of the top grammar schools in the country, a girl’s school with a high BAME population, and is a member of City HR Association.

Leilani Brown

Leilani M. Brown is Senior Vice President, Strategic Partnerships and External Engagement for K12, Inc., (NYSE:K12) a leading education technology company. Leilani leads the company’s enterprise partnerships as well as several strategic initiatives on behalf of the chairman. Leilani is also the author of From Campus to Cubicle: 25 Tips for Your First Professional Year, a career guide for young professionals and recent graduates. Leilani is also a sought-after speaker on topics including the Future of Work, diversity & inclusion, women at work and young professionals. She is an active mentor with K12’s employee resource groups, B.U.I.L.D and Women of Power and for the Executive Leadership Council. Leilani serves on the board of Middlebury College, her alma mater and serves as the Secretary of the Board for the Executive Leadership Council, the premier membership organization for global black executives. She is also a graduate of New York University.