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Port Authority of New York and New Jersy Supplier Diversity
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TOP 25 WOMEN IN POWER IMPACTING DIVERSITY
TOP 25 WOMEN IN POWER IMPACTING DIVERSITY

Top 25 Women in Power Impacting Diversity
Strengthening the Business Case for Supplier Diversity

The concept and principles of supplier diversity are understood and accepted by most corporations today, as evidenced by the numerous webpages and supplier registration portals found online. That still does not mean adequate resources are committed or that managers across business units or functions are fully engaged. It was not surprising then, that in 2015, the Top 25 Women in Power Impacting Diversity seemed to unilaterally decide it was time to strengthen the business case for supplier diversity by utilizing a variety of innovative strategies to expand efforts and results.

The Top 25 Women in Power continue to break new ground in supplier diversity during 2015. In the early days of program implementation, organizations spent a lot of energy and resources trying to locate diverse suppliers with the capability of managing corporate-sized contracts and purchase orders in areas like office supplies and logistics. Today, supplier diversity programs have grown to include a rich variety of industries that have historically had low utilization rates for diverse suppliers. Among this year's Women in Power are representatives from biotechnology, medical technology, financial services, communication technology, auto manufacturing, energy production and distribution, pharmaceuticals, and media and entertainment data collection. This is a clear indication that the business case for supplier diversity is growing strong roots.

One of the reasons DiversityPlus Magazine honors the top Women in Power is to showcase their achievements and share their innovative approaches. One of the recurring themes in their answers to questions about challenges and successes was the need to engage enterprise-wide departments and managers. Enlisting organizational units in the effort to advance utilization of diverse suppliers, and in some cases also championing diverse talent, is challenging on many levels. For one thing, the women must lead through knowledge and expertise because they cannot order managers outside the sourcing and procurement function to support supplier diversity. Their communication styles and approaches may differ, but all have the belief that supplier diversity programs can only meet goals if managers and staff participate in the effort.

An important strategy to unfold was the enlistment of senior leaders in the effort. All 25 women are adamant that their successes in supplier diversity were only possible because of the strong support coming from the top. That support led to a shift from reporting only to reporting and accountability. Increasingly, organizations are including supplier diversity goals in the performance review systems, and at review time the managers must demonstrate honest effort within their units. The focus is on transparency and integrating supplier diversity into corporate strategy.

Another strategy employed by many of the women is greater use of technology as a training and communication tool. The technology includes e-learning, more sophisticated supplier registration portals, utilization of Tier 1 and Tier 2 reporting systems, and online activity tracking. Some of the Women in Power were also challenged with helping the supplier diversity program grow and remain viable on a global basis. Companies like Ford, Nestle and United (to name a few) have global operations that add a high level of complexity to supplier diversity programs.

Convincing corporate leaders to invest additional resources in still developing supplier diversity programs is yet another challenge. In one case, the director of supplier diversity is still concentrating on educating the organizational members on the difference between workforce diversity and supplier diversity. The 25 Women in Power are working with programs clearly in various stages of development and strength. They said over and over again that getting people on board is how the supplier diversity programs grow and expand.

Read each bio of the Top 25 Women in Power Impacting Diversity and look for inspiration, innovative approaches, and solutions to challenges. Each of the award winners goes to work each day prepared to express a passion for diversity and inclusion and ready to find new ways to inspire others. The women are true leaders in every sense of the word, using formal and informal power to help their organizations develop the strength to achieve sustainability in a dynamic and more global business environment. If readers have any questions after reviewing the bios, please call or email the diversity leader. Each is happy to share her experiences and knowledge because every supplier diversity program that succeeds is one that expands opportunities for all businesses.

Jinus Moghbeli

Jinus Moghbeli
Supplier Diversity Liaison Officer

Jinus Moghbeli Drives SD Participation & Accountability at Amgen

The expertise of Jinus Moghbeli, supplier diversity liaison officer at Amgen, has been instrumental in driving organization-wide support for supplier diversity. Joining the company in 2003, she has followed a non-traditional career path for women in the biotechnology industry that has taken her through Global Strategic Sourcing and Corporate Quality. Now applying her exemplary leadership skills to supplier diversity, Moghbeli initiated and managed the Amgen Supplier Relationship Management system that is integrated with the diverse supplier process.

Moghbeli has overcome challenges in executing a successful diversity strategy by developing internal Diversity Champions and a clear accountability system. She developed and implemented monthly reports of spend with small and diverse businesses that are mapped to individual sourcing managers and implemented functional goals and quarterly scorecards. Supplier diversity progress is measured against goals. Particular attention is given to educating Amgen staff so that they become full participants in growing supplier diversity. Moghbeli is proud of the collaboration between functions that elevates staff awareness of supplier diversity on a daily basis.

Favorite Quote : "I want to be the white man's brother, not his brother-in-law." - Martin Luther King Jr.

Jinus Moghbeli

Jinus Moghbeli

Supplier Diversity Liaison Officer

Amgen

Leatha King

Leatha King

Manager, Supplier Diversity

AON

Leatha King

Leatha King
Manager, Supplier Diversity

Leatha King is AON's Thought Leader on Supplier Diversity

As the manager of supplier diversity, Leatha King is responsible for developing and managing all aspects of AON's Supplier Diversity Program and for managing the company's commitment to Chicago United's Five Forward Initiative, which fosters business relationships with local minority firms. She met the challenge of establishing accurate reporting by following a strategy she calls Plan, Execute, and Measure (PEM). She is a recognized thought leader, having vigorously cultivated and mentored a strong pipeline of diverse suppliers.

King is proud that AON's supplier diversity spend grew by 28 percent last year, but her definition of diversity success considers more than financial results. She believes diverse supplier success includes qualifying minority and women business owners into AON's procurement network, being able to incrementally spend with an existing diverse supplier, and developing joint corporate partnerships that set targets for directed spends with diverse suppliers. Leatha is the Vice President of the LGBT Committee and Chicago BUILD (Blacks United in Leading Diversity) at Aon.

Favorite Quote: "I've learned that you shouldn't go through life with a catcher's mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw something back." - Maya Angelou

Judy Panayos

Judy Panayos

Supplier Diversity Manager

Becton, Dickinson and Company

Judy Panayos

Judy Panayos
Supplier Diversity Manager

Judy Panayos Sees Supplier Diversity Role Grow at Becton, Dickinson

The global medical technology company Becton, Dickinson and Company (BD) needed strong leadership to develop and manage its supplier diversity programs in an industry often noted for its lack of diversity. They found it in Judy Panayos, who assumed the position of supplier diversity Manager in 2009.

Since then she has expanded the supplier diversity program beyond meeting governmental contract requirements, beginning with the building of a system for small business and supplier diversity data collection, used for decision-making, and an externally facing supplier portal. She has also developed communication and training for global procurement associates. One of Panayos' many achievements is the launch of a supplier recognition program that includes categories of diverse suppliers.

Panayos manages a number of supplier programs that include supplier diversity, supplier management, supplier recognition and sustainable procurement. She also oversees supplier compliance to BDs Supplier Code of Conduct. One of the measures of the success of her efforts is witnessing a higher percentage of diversity suppliers receiving awards for high performance than the total percentage in the supply base.

Favorite Quote: "Diversity is essential to innovation, and innovation is essential to our ultimate goal of "Helping all people live healthy lives." - Judy Panayos

Alicia Thompson

Alicia Thompson

Supplier Diversity Manager

Capital One

Alicia Thompson

Alicia Thompson
Supplier Diversity Manager

Alicia Thompson Emphasizes Education and Development through Capital One's Supplier Diversity Program

As the manager, of supplier diversity for Capital One, Alicia Thompson places great emphasis on both the development of diverse suppliers and supplier diversity education of Capital One associates. Because of this, Thompson has developed and managed successful business development models for WBE's like the Mentor Mastermind program in conjunction with Capital One's WVEC- Count Me In partnership and the Building Better Business Steps to Success program with the City of Richmond. Along with her team, she also designed and implemented an education/training program for sourcing and contracting associates to help them understand best practices in supplier diversity sourcing and engagement.

Thompson also leads the internal and external communication strategies for Supplier Diversity. Through a variety of internal channels, she ensures that successes in the area of supplier diversity are highlighted, resources and tools for associates are provided, and that supplier diversity advocates are recognized every quarter. Involved in a variety of community organizations that further promote diversity and inclusion, Thompson is the board president for ROSMY and volunteers for the Virginia Diversity Network and Comfort Zone Camp.

Favorite Quote: "People may be said to resemble not the bricks of which a house is built, but the pieces of a picture puzzle, each differing in shape, but matching the rest, and thus bringing out the picture." - Felix Adler

Monette Knapik

Monette Knapik

Director, Strategic Procurement

CVS Health

Monette Knapik

Monette Knapik
Director, Strategic Procurement

MonetteKnapik at CVS Health Builds Strong Supplier Diversity Brand

As the director of strategic procurement for CVS Health, MonetteKnapik has been instrumental in developing and managing a strong expanding supplier diversity program. Through effective communication strategies, she ensures that senior leadership is heavily involved in supplier diversity activities while also overseeing a team of dedicated professionals representing the CVS Health supplier diversity brand at business opportunity fairs and diversity events through sponsorship, attendance, and exhibiting. She has strengthened the utilization of the online supplier registration portal, leading to greater opportunities for diverse suppliers in all not-for-resale sourcing and procurement opportunities.

Knapik is adamant that suppliers should represent the communities in which CVS services customers. To achieve this goal she has made supplier diversity an enterprise-wide program through the implementation of a number of strategies, including ensuring language in each master services agreement promotes the organization's commitment to supplier diversity. She works closely with WBENC, and stages numerous diverse supplier events. The breadth and depth of CVS's supplier diversity brand is attributed to Knapik vigorous and enthusiastic leadership.

Favorite Quote: "Leadership is not about titles, positions or flowcharts. It is about one life influencing another." - John C. Maxwell

Anisha Jackson

Anisha Jackson

Supplier Diversity Manager

Ericsson

Anisha Jackson

Anisha Jackson
Supplier Diversity Manager

Anisha Jackson Shifts Ericsson's Supplier Diversity Program from Weak to Strong

When Anisha Jackson assumed the position of supplier diversity manager at Ericsson in 2013, it became apparent to her that the supplier diversity program lacked company-wide involvement. In response, Jackson worked with the VP of strategic sourcing to move the initiative to the forefront of the sourcing process. She developed the annual Supplier Diversity Match Maker Event, which offers suppliers opportunities to network and discuss their products and services with Ericsson's sourcing team.

Jackson is encouraging the participation and support of organization-wide leadership. In 2014, executive leaders from Ericsson's internal customer units function teamed up with Jackson and the strategic sourcing staff to attend diversity conferences. Her collaborative strategies became the foundation for program growth. Jackson and the strategic sourcing team members sit on and attend numerous committee meetings for diverse organizations. Through her efforts, Ericsson is increasing its presence in the community. Currently, the VP of strategic sourcing is a board member for the Dallas/Fort Worth Minority Council and the director of supplier diversity is a board member for the Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

Favorite Quote: "What I will say is that what I have learned for myself is that I don't have to be anybody else; and that myself is good enough; and that when I am being true to that self, then I can avail myself to extraordinary things. You have to allow for the impossible to be possible." - Lupita Nyong'o

Carla Traci Preston

Carla Traci Preston

Director, Supplier Diversity Development

Ford Motor Company

Carla Traci Preston

Carla Traci Preston
Director, Supplier Diversity Development

Carla Traci Preston Blends Focus on Product Development and Supplier Diversity at Ford

With extensive experience in product development, quality, planning, and strategy, Carla Traci Preston brings a broad perspective to Ford Motor Company's supplier diversity efforts. As the director of supplier diversity development, she is responsible for providing access, growth, and development to over 400 diverse suppliers and small businesses. She has established and monitored annual diversity spend goals and manages Ford's Joint Technology Framework Initiative. Her commitment to growing Ford's Supplier Diversity Development Program has led to the company consistently exceeding its sourcing goals.

Preston helps diverse businesses take advantage of opportunities to supply Ford outside the United States. Global expansion of Ford's supply base saw significant growth in 2014 as the company implemented an aggressive global product launch. Preston is instrumental in helping diverse suppliers expand sustainable operations globally, naming examples like the Asian Indian-owned companies EWIE Co. and Flex-N-Gate Corp. She is a recognized expert in the field of quality and was elected as a fellow by the American Society for Quality.

Favorite Quote: "Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away." – unknown

Donna Strickland

Donna Strickland

Supplier Diversity Program Manager

General Motors

Donna Strickland

Donna Strickland
Supplier Diversity Program Manager

GM's Donna Strickland Fosters Diverse Supplier Base Growth

Donna Strickland is a supplier diversity program manager at General Motors (GM). In this role, she manages the success of minority supplier programs. One of her first challenges included the revamp of a new Tier 2 reporting system that produces consistent and meticulous sustainable reporting metrics. These upgrades are significant because they support Tier 1 supplier performance, and ensures suppliers are meeting contract commitments.

Strickland developed new supplier training modules, which includes online videos and physical meetings. As GM's supplier diversity team engages its purchasing organization to develop aggressive multi-year targets, the inclusion of diverse suppliers throughout GM's entire organization remains a core priority. These programs will help grow supplier diversity numbers at the Tier 1 level. One of the program elements of the program includes hosting the annual Supplier Connections Matchmaker event, which brings together more than 100 Tier 1 exhibiting suppliers, over 800 certified MWBEs, GM executives, managers and buyers. The mobile app used at the Connections conference enables suppliers to connect with potential customers to facilitate business opportunities.

Favorite Quote: "The platform to embrace diversity and the innovation within our supply base makes us stronger every day. It also reaffirms that our commitment to work with the best suppliers, inevitably brings to the world our best." - Donna Strickland

Irene Natividad

Irene Natividad

President

Global Summit of Women

Irene Natividad

Irene Natividad
President

Irene Natividad Creates Global Venue for Women

Irene Natividad, president of the Global Summit of Women and chair of the Corporate Women Directors International, is always focused on increasing women's economic empowerment globally. Bringing together female leaders to share and develop empowerment success strategies, she also oversees research on women on boards and brings together female corporate directors from around the world to discuss issues of corporate governance. She is a member of the Blue Ribbon Commission on Board Diversity with the National Association of Board Directors. Irene has also been involved with the National Women's Political Caucus for over 10 years.

One of Natividad's achievements has been the growing number of countries from all continents that are now represented at the Global Summit function. Attending the Global Summit gives people the opportunity to interact with men and women from around the world, and to listen to a diverse group of presenters. She purposefully brings leaders to the Global Summit from three sectors – business, government and civil society.

Favorite Quote: "There is no point blaming the men… we made them. So now it is up to us, the makers of men, to become responsible." - Nancy Astor

Stephanie Pryor

Stephanie Pryor

Supplier Diversity Manager

LG&E & KU Energy

Stephanie Pryor

Stephanie Pryor
Supplier Diversity Manager

Stephanie Pryor Brings Excellence to LG&E and KU Energy Supplier Diversity

Fostering a diverse business pipeline in the electric industry is a challenge that Stephanie R. Pryor embraced by bringing excellence in best practices in supplier diversity to LG&E and KU Energy LLC. The challenges of developing and growing a diverse supply chain in an industry that has a recent focus on supplier diversity includes, locating companies, ensuring the continued utilization of diverse businesses, and proactively engaging lines of business to understand their needs. Pryor advanced a Tier 2 program to influence and assist business partners in making a commitment to diverse supplier utilization. She has been instrumental in successfully executing the diversity utilization strategy for large power generation projects by engaging diverse suppliers early in construction projects, establishing diversity spend goals, and bringing together prime contractors with diverse businesses.

For three consecutive years, Pryor was awarded the Agave Impact Award for symbolizing the spirit and intent of minority economic development by the Tri-State Minority Supplier Development Council. Under Pryor's leadership, the power company was awarded the Edison Electric Institute ("EEI") Supplier Diversity Excellence Award.

Favorite Quote: "Diversity is about all of us, and about us having to figure out how to walk through this world together." - Jacqueline Woodson

Shaleta Dunn

Shaleta Dunn

Director, Diverse Talent and Supplier Programs

ManpowerGroup

Shaleta Dunn

Shaleta Dunn
Director, Diverse Talent and Supplier Programs

Shaleta Dunn Directs Supplier Diversity AcrossManpowerGroup's Four Brands

Shaleta Dunn is the director of diverse talent and supplier programs for Manpower Group, delivering leadership in the workforce solutions industry by developing diverse talent and supplier diversity initiatives. She fosters supplier diversity across ManpowerGroup's four brands – Manpower, Experis, Right Management and ManpowerGroup Solutions – providing strategic recommendations, along with specific actions to the SVPs and VPs of the Supplier Diversity Executive Committee to increase opportunities for diverse suppliers and impact within the organization. She then coordinates and manages initiatives with business unit champions of supplier diversity within each brand.

She also develops recruiting strategies to access and source diverse talent, like veterans and disabled individuals. The complexity of the organizational structure led Dunn to address the difficulties diverse suppliers experienced in navigating the company. She strategically overhauled the brand overviews so suppliers could easily recognize opportunities.Dunn is responsible for producing ManpowerGroup's hallmark annual event, the Supplier Diversity Roundtable. It brings together over 130 diversity suppliers to ManpowerGroup headquarters where they are offered direct access to senior management and clients.

Favorite Quote: "I've come to believe that each of us has a personal calling that's as unique as a fingerprint – and that the best way to succeed is to discover what you love..." - Oprah Winfrey

Sheila Dews-Johnson

Sheila Dews-Johnson

Director, Supplier Diversity

McCormick

Sheila Dews-Johnson

Sheila Dews-Johnson
Director, Supplier Diversity

McCormick's Sheila Dews-Johnson Leads Strategic Supplier Diversity

As a 33-year employee of McCormick & Co., Sheila Dews–Johnson brings in-depth company and food industry knowledge to her position as director, supplier diversity. Experience in multi-functional positions, including quality assurance, manufacturing and human resources, forms the foundation for her leadership role in creating equal access for diverse suppliers to conduct business with McCormick. She uses her knowledge to proactively and effectively manage, promote, and execute a company-wide initiative to facilitate opportunities for diverse suppliers. Dews-Johnson has assumed a leadership role in integrating diverse suppliers into the implementation of corporate strategy and supports inclusion and utilization of diverse businesses as strategic suppliers in the supply chain.

Dews-Johnson is the past chair of the NMSDC Food and Beverage Industry Group. She is currently board member and past chair of the Capital Region MSDC. She is also a member of McCormick's Workforce Diversity and Inclusion Council. In service to her community, Dews-Johnson is an active member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. and a member of the board of trustees for The Friends School of Harford.

Favorite Quote: "Be The Change That You Want To See In The World." - Mahatma Gandhi

Gretchen Ebert

Gretchen Ebert

Director, Supplier Diversity

Medtronic

Gretchen Ebert

Gretchen Ebert
Director, Supplier Diversity

Medtronic's Gretchen Ebert Leverages Supplier Diversity eLearning

Technology is the foundation of Medtronic so it is natural that Gretchen Ebert, director of supplier diversity, would choose to leverage Supplier Diversity eLearning to educate supply chain employees across the U.S. Working with an MWBE, the training is linked to the learning management system which is accessible to all employees and required by those in sourcing. Ebert also developed an on-line activity tracker, providing transparent leadership and visibility of progress against goals. The flexible tool accommodates metrics as needed and the identification of outstanding Supplier Diversity Champions.

Ebert launched the North Central Minority Supplier Development Council (now NCMSDC but formerly MMSDC) Corporate Roundtable, providing a forum for corporate members to benchmark and share supplier diversity best practices. She attributes supportive executive leadership as a crucial factor in the growth of the supplier diversity program. Currently chair of the NMSDC Healthcare Industry Group and co-chair of the NCMSDC Corporate Roundtable, Ebert also serves on the Diversity Information Resources Board of Directors. She has received numerous recognitions, including MMSDC and Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal Minority Advocate Awards.

Favorite Quote: "If you can't fly, then run. If you can't run, then walk. If you can't walk, then crawl. But whatever you do, keep moving." - Martin Luther King Jr.

Tara Spann

Tara Spann

Director, Global Supplier Diversity

Merck

Tara Spann

Tara Spann
Director, Global Supplier Diversity

Tara Spann Oversees Merck's Global Supplier Diversity

Tara Spann is the Director, global supplier diversity at Merck, one of the world's largest pharmaceutical companies. She is responsible for the development and execution of the company's global supplier diversity strategy. Her focus is on integrating supplier diversity on an enterprise-wide basis.

Spann brings critical pharmaceutical industry experience to her position. Before joining Merck, she built the foundation for Bristol-Myers Squibb's Supplier diversity program. Previously, she was the executive director of Diversity Initiatives for Staples, and was the senior software licensing negotiator at Harvard University. Spann's experience includes serving as the contract manager of Harvard University's Procurement Management department. In that position, she managed the University's minority procurement program, government compliance regulations and audits for purchasing. Spann is a graduate of Northeastern University in electrical engineering and Suffolk University Law School in Boston.

Favorite Quote: "There's a difference between interest and commitment. When you're interested in doing something, you do it only when it's convenient; when you're committed to something, you accept no excuses - only results." - Kenneth Blanchard, PhD.

Shendora Pridgen

Shendora Pridgen

Vice President and Global Head, Supplier Diversity

Morgan Stanley

Shendora Pridgen

Shendora Pridgen
Vice President and Global Head, Supplier Diversity

Morgan Stanley's ShendoraPridgen is a Top Leader in the Diversity Space

ShendoraPridgen, vice president and global head of supplier diversity at Morgan Stanley, reached her position after moving up through the organization, beginning as an analyst in the sourcing department in 1997. Pridgen fills the dual role of leading the effort to seek out minority and women-owned businesses by fostering strategic business relationships and overseeing the procurement activities for several commodities in the sourcing department. As a result of her expertise in monitoring MWBE inclusion in the bidding process, the firm has experienced a 30 percent increase in supplier diversity over the last three years. Pridgen used several strategies to find diverse-owned suppliers, including attending a variety of events and conferences and identifying different strategies to keep the sourcing department engaged in the supplier diversity program like establishing targets by commodity type.

Under her leadership, Morgan Stanley was the recipient of the 2014 Outstanding Corporate Supplier Diversity Award, given by the National Minority Business Council. Recently, the WE Magazine named her as one of Americas Top 100 Leaders in Corporate Supplier Diversity.

Favorite Quote: "You may encounter many defeats but you must not be defeated. Please remember that your difficulties do not define you. They simply strengthen your ability to overcome." - Maya Angelou

Carla Hunter-Ramsey

Carla Hunter-Ramsey

Director of Supplier Diversity

National Grid

Carla Hunter-Ramsey

Carla Hunter-Ramsey
Director of Supplier Diversity

Carla Hunter-Ramsey Embeds Supplier Diversity in National Grid's Procurement

Carla Hunter-Ramsey, director of supplier diversity at National Grid, has successfully overcome a number of challenges to embed supplier diversity in the organization's procurement function. They included developing strategies to increase engagement of the procurement organization, embedding language in the procurement policies and procedures to change organizational and prospective vendor behaviors, establishing supplier diversity goals in key areas of the line of business, and constantly building the business case for the value and impact of the supplier diversity program on the organization's bottom line and overall success profile.

There are many diverse supplier successes resulting from Hunter-Ramsey's efforts. For example, Carolina Pole, a woman-owned and HubZone business, recycles wood from the Albany, N.Y., yard by taking it to a co-generation facility where the burned materials create output energy that is sold back to the local grid. The supplier supports National Grid's company-wide "Line of Sight" objectives which are safety, cost and environmentally friendly. Under Hunter-Ramsey's leadership, the supplier diversity program has received over 34 awards, recognizing its innovativeness and ability to serve as an industry benchmark of success.

Favorite Quote: "Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase." - Martin Luther King Jr.

Nicole Wiggins

Nicole Wiggins

Corporate Supplier Diversity Director

Navistar

Nicole Wiggins

Nicole Wiggins
Corporate Supplier Diversity Director

Nicole Wiggins Focuses on Diverse Supplier Innovators at Navistar

Fostering strategic supplier relationships that are innovative, agile, and deliver high quality goods and services is the focus of Nicole Wiggins, corporate supplier diversity director at Navistar. Starting as an intern with Navistar, she quickly progressed to supply manager. Wiggins worked for 16 years in supply management and purchasing, gaining the experience needed to maximize the impact of her current role. Wiggins brought her leadership expertise and experience in supplier relationship management to the supplier diversity program, ensuring suppliers are offered fair opportunities and educating people on supplier diversity. She also led a team responsible for ensuring supplier readiness for all components needed for new program launches.

Wiggins is an advocate for the diverse suppliers who are mostly small, entrepreneurial companies bringing innovative thinking. There are many success stories, like the MBE/WBE who designed the company's diversity supplier portal. After project completion, she and her team helped the company market its product to other customers. Six diverse suppliers were recognized for their performance in the areas of cost, quality, delivery, and service.

Favorite Quote: "Start by doing what's necessary; then do what's possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible" - Francis of Assisi

Karen Blackwell

Karen Blackwell

Manager, Supplier Diversity and Development

Nestle

Karen Blackwell

Karen Blackwell
Manager, Supplier Diversity and Development

Karen Blackwell Re-Energizes Nestlé's Supplier Diversity Initiative

When Nestlé's leaders decided it was time to re-energize the supplier diversity initiative, they turned to Karen Blackwell. As the manager for supplier diversity and development for Nestlé Business Services of North America, she educates internal stakeholders about the diverse business owners supporting the Creating Shared Value principle that Nestlé adopted as a fundamental part of its business strategy. Blackwell has successfully met the challenge of integrating diverse suppliers into a supply chain delivering food products in 194 countries.

Blackwell has many diversity success stories of small businesses to multi-million dollar corporations building capacity through participation in the Nestlé supplier diversity program. She has also had great success internally. Team members in the Maintenance repair and operations group now include supplier diversity as a key performance indicator in the Supplier Relationship Management process used across North America. Blackwell has embraced the use of technology and is supporting WBEC-West's development of a virtual matchmaking tool that will help Nestlé buyers and first tier suppliers located around the world to use easily accessible video conferencing tools to connect with high performing diverse suppliers.

Favorite Quote: "There are not more than five musical notes, yet the combinations of these five give rise to more melodies than can ever be heard." - Sun Tzu, The Art of War

Shirelle Magee

Shirelle Magee

Supplier Diversity Manager

Nielsen

Shirelle Magee

Shirelle Magee
Supplier Diversity Manager

Transparency is Shirelle Magee's Supplier Diversity Philosophy at Nielsen

Nielsen's Supplier Diversity Manager Shirelle Magee is responsible for coordinating, implementing and monitoring supplier diversity initiatives. Her efforts reflect a passion and dedication to building strong diverse supplier relationships. She develops supplier diversity education programs, and maintains meticulous spend data for Tier 1 and Tier 2 suppliers. Magee finds her greatest challenge is in exercising patience and perseverance while remaining strategically productive. She educates internal stakeholders on the value of supplier diversity and works alongside her mentor, Lamont Robinson, to develop new partnerships in the diverse communities.

A firm believer in transparency, Magee creates and issues quarterly reports that report on progress. She has received many accolades for developing the exclusive and transparent Nielsen Annual Supplier Diversity Report that is valued by internal and external stakeholders alike. The report provides details about the vision and actions the business is taking to grow its supplier diversity program. She believes strongly in accountability as Nielsen's key business units work to meet the 10 percent spend goal set by leadership. Magee has also published numerous articles in industry publications.

Favorite Quote: "How can I help you help me help you!" - George Fraser

Yesi Morillo-Gual

Yesi Morillo-Gual

Founder & President

Proud to Be Latina

Yesi Morillo-Gual

Yesi Morillo-Gual
Founder & President

YesiMorillo-Gual is Proud to Be Latina

Risk manager in the municipal securities division of Citi, YesiMorillo-Gual is also records management officer, workflow coordinator, and an active member of the diversity committee. Serving on the Heritage and marketing task forces, she implemented various "Learning & Empowerment" functions and created the first-ever newsletter. She has been recognized with Citi's Best Practices Award. Outside of Citi, Morillo-Gual supports the Susan G. Komen Race for the cure and has been honored by the organization with a Pink Honor Roll Induction as a top fundraiser in New York City for four consecutive years.

Also on her own time, Morillo-Gual founded Proud to Be Latina, an organization that helps Latinas banish self-doubt and brake self-imposed barriers. The personal and professional network empowers Latinas to rise to their full potential. She was driven to start the network because Afro Latinos needed a platform to share and network. The Proud to Be Latina organization embraces Latina diversity. By giving diverse Latinas a networking venue, Citi and other corporations have many more opportunities to include Latinas of all backgrounds.

Favorite Quote: "Nothing is impossible – our color and gender are irrelevant for success." - YesiMorillo-Gual

Diane Lin

Diane Lin

Director, Global Procurement

Starbucks

Diane Lin

Diane Lin
Director, Global Procurement

Diane Lin Champions Starbuck's Mission through Supplier Diversity

When Diane Lin was chosen to take on the responsibility of elevating Starbucks' supplier diversity program, she knew very little about supplier diversity. Initially, she had the misperception that supplier diversity was a social cause, but she quickly realized supplier diversity is a strategic imperative. As Lin immersed herself in her role, she was faced with the challenge of developing a method to evaluate the large number of diverse suppliers for potential opportunities. Lin developed a strategic approach to educate and develop high potential suppliers on understanding Starbucks' needs and how suppliers should articulate the unique value they bring.

Under Lin's leadership, diverse spend has grown by 96 percent since 2009 as a result of overcoming these challenges. Large diverse suppliers are now represented in Starbucks' key categories and not just in auxiliary categories. Lin developed a comprehensive supplier development process to coach and develop high potential diverse suppliers for long term, sustainable success. In recognition of her leadership, Lin was the inaugural recipient of the 2014 NMSDC Catalyst Award.

Favorite Quote: "Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Olivia Betty Dorsey

Olivia Betty Dorsey

Vice President of Joint Ventures

Thompson Hospitality

Olivia Betty Dorsey

Olivia Betty Dorsey
Vice President of Joint Ventures

Olivia Betty Dorsey at Thompson Hospitality Helps Diverse Suppliers Grow

Olivia Betty Dorsey, vice president of joint ventures for Thompson Hospitality, is responsible for joint venture relationships with Compass business sectors and clients with diversity business objectives. She has been working in the diversity space for over 28 years, making her a trailblazer and an industry leader. Previously she worked for W.W. Grainger and International Truck & Engine Corporation (Navistar). In her current position, she focuses on breaking down internal corporate barriers by consistently communicating the supplier diversity business case, creating champions within the organization, and providing education and training programs.

Dorsey has many supplier success stories. In one case, her leadership helped a strategic partner grow revenues by $2 million in two years. The Houston produce company was then able to increase their business in other joint venture accounts. In Chicago, Dorsey assisted a women-owned business to land a contract worth over $700,000. Dorsey successfully leverages Thompson Hospitality's joint venture strategic partnerships to drive supplier diversity. Dorsey has been recognized as Buyer of the Year by the Chicago MBDC and has served on the Board of Directors for WBENC.

Favorite Quote: "Anybody can do your job; but, you need a heart full of grace, a soul generated by love and the tenacity to be a servant that makes a difference in our world." - Olivia Betty Dorsey

Christine Pincus

Christine Pincus

Program Manager, Supplier Diversity

Tyco

Christine Pincus

Christine Pincus
Program Manager, Supplier Diversity

Tyco's Christine Pincus Leads Supplier Diversity Teams to Success

Christine Pincus, supplier diversity program manager for Tyco International, has proven expertise in leading supplier diversity teams. She is responsible for the supplier diversity program and oversees the global sourcing of IT professional services. The challenges she has faced include moving the decentralized supplier diversity program to a centralized function, standardizing processes for diverse supplier identification across all sourcing opportunities, developing user-friendly communication and measurement tools, and educating employees. She leads the Supplier Diversity Council, which has cross organization representation, increased external outreach to diversity groups, and oversees the global expansion of supplier diversity.

The success stories Pincus tells include Leaders Matters LLC, a women-owned business and navigators of strategic change. Pincus mentored them through WBENC's certification process, and the company now does significant business with Tyco. Under Pincus' leadership, supplier diversity spend rose 12.3 percent to 15.6 percent year-over-year with a 27 percent increase in its total spend. The program uses a President's Scorecard to measure progress. Metrics are reported monthly to U.S. business units. Pincus is a board member of the Women's Business Development Center of Florida.

Favorite Quote: "Diversity is not about how we differ. Diversity is about embracing one another's uniqueness." - Ola Joseph

Ruby McCleary

Ruby McCleary

Director, Supplier Diversity

United Airlines

Ruby McCleary

Ruby McCleary
Director, Supplier Diversity

Ruby McCleary Builds United's Supplier Diversity on Global Scale

Ruby McCleary, director of supplier diversity at United, is proud of the long-term partnerships in place with diverse suppliers. They include companies like United Building Maintenance, Software House International, Prospect Air, Scientific Concepts and Worldwide Technology. It is challenging to build a large supplier diversity program in the airline industry because the business is global, and the largest expenses are fuel and aircraft. Finding diverse businesses with the scale and capacity to support United's global footprint is challenging.

McCleary has responded to the challenge in a number of ways. She begins by ensuring United offers the widest range of opportunities for diverse businesses. Another strategy has been growing Tier 2 so that smaller diverse businesses can join United's supply chain, helping them grow in the corporate partnership experience and capacity. McCleary has also leveraged United's strong partnerships with organizations like WBENC and their Regional Partner Organizations, and NMSDC and their Affiliate Network. Under McCleary's leadership, United Airlines was named one of America's Top Corporations for Women's Business Enterprises by WBENC.

Favorite Quote: "It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity there is beauty and there is strength." - Maya Angelou

Aprile Ricardi

Aprile Ricardi

Corporate Responsibility and Supplier Diversity Leader

United Technologies

Aprile Ricardi

Aprile Ricardi
Corporate Responsibility and Supplier Diversity Leader

AprileRicardi at United Technologies has Blended Role

As the corporate responsibility and supplier diversity leader, AprileRicardi's blended role includes supplier diversity, supplier sustainability, code of ethics, and the conflict minerals compliance program. Her first step upon coming on board in 2012 at United Technologies Corporation (UTC) was closing gaps in partnerships with influential diverse groups. She established membership in organizations like the Center for Women in Enterprise (CWE) in the New England Region and the local affiliate for WBENC. Ricardi collaborated on a webinar, hosted by CWE and herself representing UTC, which focused on how to do business with UTC as a certified enterprise. She considers this one of her greatest achievements because it was collaborative and helped UTC attract WBEs that may not have been certified otherwise.

Ricardi and her team launched a Supplier Diversity 101 training module for employees across the corporation. The module raises employee awareness and helps them understand the value and importance of supplier diversity. External outreach efforts include participating in trade and business development organizations conferences, workshops, and webinars/seminars. In 2014, Ricardi was named CWE's Supplier Diversity Professional of the Year.

Favorite Quote: "Life is about making an impact, and finding the courage to face the challenges that makes life so interesting." - AprileRicardi

About DiversityPlus Magazine:
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What you’ll read in the pages of DiversityPlus represents the most current and impactful thinking about diverse supplier relationships. Plus, with over 17 years in print, our trend research, interviews, and feature articles showcase a depth of industry relationships unmatched by any other supplier diversity publication.




 

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