2018 Innovation and Inclusion Summit Agenda

1:30 pm – 2:00 pm


Registration and Informal Networking

2:15 pm – 2:40 pm


Fireside Chat
These game-changing innovators will discuss how they have effectively evolved their respective organizations to elevate women around the globe to reach new heights. Best practices and continuous reevaluation of their effectiveness, along with establishing a culture of inclusion, are important components for future success. Listen as they share their own experiences in moving the needle forward.

Moderator: Sara Radcliffe, MPH, President and CEO, California Life Sciences Association


2:40 pm – 3:00pm


Session 1: Diversity Drives Innovation: 30,000 Foot View through Data
In best practice companies, diversity and inclusion is not a buzzword but a business imperative for leaders. This session will share the latest data on the impact of diversity and inclusion on employee engagement, recruitment and retention initiatives, and overall competitiveness of companies across multiple sectors.

Speaker: Holly J. Falk-Krzesinski, PhD, Vice President, Research Intelligence, Global Strategic Networks, Elsevier

3:00 pm – 3:25 pm


Session 2: Why Diversity is Good for Business!
Culture matters in innovative organizations. The most successful institutions know that innovation and impact come from diverse talent pools of women and men. Join us for a discussion on how senior leaders have created and evolved workplace cultures that attract the best talent in science and technology and learn how inclusive environments should be the new normal of the future.

Moderator: Karene Richards, CEO, The Karene Group, LLC; Chair, AWIS Audit and Finance Committee


3:25 pm – 3:50 pm


Fireside Chat
Salesforce has been a beacon in the industry on social issues and a leader in technology innovation. Salesforce appointed a Chief Equality Officer which is a deviation from Industry’s Chief Diversity Officer—learn why. In addition, the actions that they have taken on LGBTQ equality, as well as pay equality, have been on the cutting edge of diversity and inclusion. Hear how Salesforce tries to remain a leader on these issues, and how leadership pushes the company to be best in class.

Moderator: Susan Windham-Bannister, PhD, Managing Director, Biomedical Innovation Advisors, LLC, and President and CEO, Biomedical Growth Strategies, LLC; President-Elect, AWIS National Governing Board

Speaker: Tony Prophet, MBA, Chief Equality Officer, Salesforce

3:50 pm – 4:10 pm


Session 3: Building Blocks: Financing New Ventures
Translating STEM ideas into successful businesses require entrepreneurs to quickly become financially savvy. Continuously navigating the world of venture capital, venture debt, and SBIR grants can be challenging, and yet enthralling as financing can quickly help accelerate your company. Learn from some of the top individuals who have successfully navigated the world of startups and financing, in addition to those who are responsible for funding those ventures.

Moderator: Vasudev Bailey, PhD, Partner, ARTIS Ventures; Councilor, AWIS National Governing Board


4:10 pm – 4:35 pm


Session 4: Fix the Women or Fix the System?
Many companies and academic institutions are looking at strategies to increase the participation of women in science and leadership. Some questions that come up are: Do we focus on the women or on the barriers that exist in the system? Are quotas needed to improve the situation? Listen to academic and industry leaders debate this topic from various angles.

Moderator: Pamela McCauley, PhD, Professor, Department of Industrial Engineering and Management Systems, University of Central Florida; Councilor, AWIS National Governing Board



4:35 pm – 4:55 pm


Fireside Chat

The importance of R&D and the role it plays in supporting the innovation community provides early stage companies with an advantage. In addition, it is imperative to understand the importance of diversity and its impact on the success of a company. Hear from our guest speaker who understands the effort needed to improve innovation and diversity in the workplace and has implemented several programs which have led to positive impact.

Moderator: Jennifer Elisseeff, PhD, Professor, Johns Hopkins University; Councilor, AWIS National Governing Board

Panelist: Melinda Richter, MBA, Global Head of Johnson & Johnson Innovation, JLABS

5:00 pm – 6:00 pm


Social Networking Reception

6:00 pm – 6:05 pm


Dinner Welcome

Master of Ceremonies
Pam Moore, Evening News Anchor, KRON4

6:35 pm – 6:50 pm


7:30 pm – 8:30 pm


Networking Walk-Around Dessert Buffet Sponsored by Intel

1667 K Street NW, Suite 800, Washington, DC 20006
(202) 588-8175

The Association for Women in Science (AWIS) is a global network with 80 grassroots chapters and affiliates connecting more than 100,000 professionals in STEM with members, allies and supporters worldwide.


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