This year’s Women to Watch Summit will be held on May 5, from 10:00 AM EDT on the Women of Color STEM DTX Platform. Click here to register for the May Summit.
Women of Color magazine’s annual WOMEN TO WATCH awards honors achievement in technology, telecommunications, finance, energy, industry, healthcare, utilities, and more. The list recognizes Women of Color Technology Rising Stars and Technology Allstars from Women of Color STEM conferences. The annual Women to Watch Summit is designed to encourage and inspire women in STEM to share their career experiences. The program celebrates women who have made a significant impact in their respective fields.
This year’s list includes leaders from AT&T, Ansys, Bell, Boeing Global Services, Booz Allen Hamilton, CACI Shared Services Center, Continental Automotive North America, Collins Aerospace, Cornerstone Consolidated Services Group, Corning, Cummins, and Ford Motor Company. Save the date for the Women to Watch Summit: May 5th. Click here to register and view the schedule of events.
Debra Boston, a senior data analyst at General Dynamics Information Technology, has been selected by Career Communications as one of the fifty Women to Watch 2023. She has spent more than 20 years in health analytics and data management. She also has direct experience with Medicare health plan management systems, Medicare.gov systems, and Medicare claims data analysis. She has been recognized for enhancing federal system applications and extracting Medicare datasets to automate business processes. In addition, she has supported the maintenance of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services surveillance, epidemiology, and results database. Her contributions helped modify over 250 COBOL programs for more timely transactions and greater transparency.
DANIELLE HILLIARD is an assistant supervisor in Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory’s concept design and realization branch. Two hundred branch staff design and build advanced prototypes for space exploration and national security missions. Before APL, Hilliard worked at Cessna Aircraft and the Naval Sea Systems Command. In parallel to her professional career, Hilliard served as a U.S. Army reservist from 1993 to 2000. A year later, she joined APL’s air and missile defense sector as a lead engineer on weapons and sensor systems. She recently completed her Ph.D. in technology management at Capitol Technology University.
ARDIS CARLOS-ALIM is vice president of global engagement within the JP Morgan Chase (JPMC) cybersecurity team. In 2015, she planned events that impacted 300,000 JPMC employees. She also delivered the annual Cyber Awareness Month campaigns in October, which ran in major financial centers, including New York, London, and Hong Kong. In addition, Carlos-Alim has impacted the lives of many through mentoring and coaching. She regularly volunteers for internal events hosted by Women in Cybersecurity, and CyberKidz, an external cyber education program. In addition, she has co-led the Girls Who Code Summer Immersion Program in Jersey City, NJ.
A first-generation American and the first to go to college, CARLA PRIETO had a vital role in the earned value management system (EVMS) recertification at Bell. As she progressed, Prieto later took on more responsibilities in program finance, becoming the first woman of color leader in EVMS at Bell. Currently, she serves as a senior manager for business operations on the Bell 360 Invictus program, which is Bell’s offering for the U.S. Army’s Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft. EVM is one of the critical systems monitored by the Defense Contract Management Agency to measure the scope, cost, and schedule of program/project performance.
CAMILLE WILLIAMS is an application engineer at Ansys. She has served in this position since May 2021. Her job involves providing customer technical support, helping customers get started with proprietary software, and introducing them to training manuals. In addition, Williams has worked on many projects utilizing Ansys products to showcase and sell to customers. Williams started her career as an intern with Quicken Loans, where she built code solutions and created templates for code production for IT teams. She earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical and electronics engineering at Wayne State University and a master’s degree in computer software engineering from the University of Michigan.
ISABEL MORENO is an AT&T lead sales engineer. She specializes in networking technologies and is responsible for supporting AT&T sales through the Alliance & A.C.C. partner channel. Moreno assists partners by informing them about AT&T products and services with solution designs to meet customer requirements. Moreno and her family came to Southern California when she was 5. She is proud that she was the first in her family to graduate from college. Moreno is an example of a woman of color who has utilized STEM to improve her life, community, and the world.
KRISTIN BROWN is a senior Lake County site operations director at Abbott Laboratories. She has held leadership roles in engineering, supply chain, and project management. She leads a team of technical professionals dedicated to providing best-in-class service. She has also been active in employee resource groups, including Women Leaders of Abbott. Recently, she co-led mentoring circles, represented corporate engineering on the Engineering Executive Council, and led the Engineering Development Program. Externally, she promotes STEM opportunities by developing a skilled pilot trades apprenticeship via the College of Lake County.
ARMINDA PALACIO began her career in 1987 as a payroll clerk for a construction company in Phoenix, AZ. She worked for several companies before being hired by Actalent in 2016 as an engineering project controls analyst. Her ability to troubleshoot complications inherent in keeping an engineering office running has made her an invaluable asset. In addition, she cares for those who are less fortunate. Every year, she teams up with friends to make quilts. They work six hours a day for four days and then donate the quilts to Quilts of Valor and Project Linus for Abused Children.
KAREN SHARP is a systems engineer and cyber security expert at Aerospace Corporation. She has used technology in novel ways to improve the work of her customers and community while also boosting the understanding of technology’s potential to improve access to services, resources, and information. Before joining Aerospace in 2008 as an engineering specialist, she worked for Boeing and Raytheon, among others, as a contractor to the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Sharp earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Tennessee. State University and a master’s degree in mathematics with an emphasis in computer science from Ohio State University.
Runjun Gandhi is now a supervisor in the industrial engineering group at General Motors. During her GM career, she has worked with teams to launch products in North American plants. She also developed a project management tool to track every launch’s progress. An average project file can have over 7,000 lines to follow a product’s design, build, installation, and production ramp-up. Gandhi was also recognized for her leadership in GM’s COVID-19 mask-making. Near the project’s end, 75 people in three separate shifts made over 106,000 masks per day.
Melinda Hines is a strategic engagement manager and role model at World Wide Technology (WWT). She currently manages a team of 30-40 consultants. She began her career as an administrative assistant, directing calls for a group of staffing specialists, one director, and a senior vice president. She quickly moved up the ladder and served as an on-site specialist and sourcing consultant for a primary corporate account. She spent more than eight years at a provider of contract workers and other personnel services before working as a contractor for Sony PlayStation, Cisco Systems, VISA, and LinkedIn. She joined WWT in 2015.
STEPHANIE JENKINS is a chief technologist at Booz Allen Hamilton. She has led some of the firm’s most complex software development projects. She is highly respected as a role model in a community that includes software developers, cloud architects, testers, and data scientists. She is also actively involved in Booz Allen’s recruiting and hiring efforts. She is engaged with minority-serving institutions, such as historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs), where she mentors STEM-focused students. In addition, she has supported scholarship fundraising events as a member of Delta Sigma Theta and South Carolina State University alum organizations.
MYLENE NOVELO is a Boeing Global Services (BGS) senior business operations manager. She leads a team of business integrators described as “the glue” for many BGS organizations. Novelo is also passionate about mentoring and coaching employees. In addition, she makes time to participate in Boeing Society of Women Engineers intern interviews. Novelo also actively supports humanitarian efforts. Through her church, she volunteers for park cleanups and planting, delivering meals to vulnerable people affected by a hurricane, and coordinating blood banks. While off-ramped to raise her family, she worked as a mortgage loan officer and sold Avon products.
ASHA CARVALHO is a senior technical product manager at the Ford Motor Company. She leads a global team to deliver cycle planning and resource management products critical for the planning and execution of vehicle production. Carvalho is Ford’s lead IT recruiter at the Society of Women Engineers conference and co-leads IT recruiting at the annual Grace Hopper conference. She is also a Silver-tier facilitator of a Google initiative empowering women and other underrepresented groups to celebrate their achievements in the workplace and beyond. In addition, Carvalho has mentored several new Ford employees hired after their college graduation.
TARA TRAVIS earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Virginia Tech in 2005. Since 2016, she has served as fuel system integration manager at Cummins. She manages the development of product fuel system components in the U.S., United Kingdom, India, and China. In 2017, she was one of three women selected to participate in the executive leadership program at Smith College. She was also awarded the Rodica Baranescu Award for Technical Leadership Excellence during the 2017 Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Conference. At the 2019 Cummins Women on Technology Convention, she spoke on the importance of inclusion.
LINGYAN WANG holds 10 U.S. patents and several international patents. In addition, she has produced 52 publications with over 6,000 citations. Her interest in nanostructured materials led to ceramics research. After joining Corning Inc., she designed a magnetic nanoparticle for biological separation, which launched as a product for the cleanup required to remove the mineral oil, dyes, salts, and other impurities from DNA samples. While working on research projects, she often joins volunteers at the Corning Museum of Glass. In addition, she supports summer science fairs for high school students and college interns at Corning and serves in the Corning Technology Women’s Network.
VANESSA ROSS is a lead programmer for Cornerstone Consolidated Services Group. The catalog company specializes in warehousing, logistics, and distribution for several brands, including Frontgate, Ballard, GarnetHill, and HSN. Ross began her career coding for a library catalog system. At Cintas Corporation, she was responsible for developing the company’s financial/accounting and human resources systems. At Cornerstone, she has been a critical player in developing and implementing a change management system for the IT group, upgrading the warehouse management system, and moving inventory from Roanoke, VA, to West Chester, PA. She has also branched out to mentor teammates.
CAMILLE CARTER was hired as a systems administrator at the CACI Shared Services Center in 2017. By the fall of 2020, she was promoted to network engineer. Her contributions are crucial to the ongoing success of technology resources, such as a web utility for changing passwords and performing two-factor authentication. In addition, she is part of the team rolling out software-define access identity, authentication, and wide area network fabric. Carter is also part of a group that helps rescue children from trafficking and exploitation. She is close to completing a bachelor’s degree in cyber security from Bellevue University.
NYDIA POMBO is head of controlling and networking for North America at Continental Automotive North America. She is a financial executive with a record of success in leading organizations to profitability by spearheading strategic initiatives. She analyzes existing processes, identifies opportunities for improvement, and implements innovations that boost efficiency while capturing cost savings. In addition, she is recognized for cultivating collaborative and inclusive working environments that align cross-functional and cross-cultural team members around common goals. Pombo earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Florida Atlantic University and an M.B.A. from the Lake Forest Graduate School of Management.
RICHA VERMA is a senior lead engineer in power and controls at Collins Aerospace. She has worked in the industry for 7-plus years. Before that, she spent five years in the automotive industry. After graduating from college, she started her career working on designing and developing hardware multimedia for Ford vehicles. At Collins, she has worked on bus power control unit designs. She also developed an automation tool with the help of her team that has the potential to be used across multiple departments. In addition, Verma led the Buddy Program for Maternity as part of W3, which received good feedback.
This year’s Women to Watch Summit will be held on May 5, from 10:00 am EDT on the Women of Color STEM DTX Platform. Click here to register for the May Summit. The annual Women to Watch Summit is designed to encourage and inspire women in STEM to share their career experiences. The program celebrates women who have made a significant impact in their respective fields.
Women of Color magazine’s annual 50 WOMEN TO WATCH awards recognize success and achievement in technology, telecommunications, finance, energy, industry, healthcare, utilities, and more. This prestigious list showcases trailblazing women in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) careers nominated for recognition by major employers in the U.S.
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