Elevating, celebrating, and amplifying the visibility and voices of people of colour from across the globe is more important than ever.
The 2020 EMpower ethnic minority executives ranking celebrates 100 senior people of colour who are leading by example and removing barriers on the pathway to success for ethnic minority employees.
The executives on the list are all within at least three levels of the chief executives at large companies, or are the leaders of smaller organisations.
The list was created by diversity and inclusion membership organisation INvolve and is supported by Yahoo Finance UK.
All of the ethnic minority leaders were nominated by peers and colleagues. Nominations were then reviewed by EMpower’s judging panel, including the head of Yahoo Finance UK, Lianna Brinded.
Each person was scored on the influence of their role, their impact on ethnic minority inclusion inside and outside the workplace, and their business achievements.
“Those on the EMpower Senior Executive List are leading by example and blazing a trail for others to follow,” said Suki Sandhu, CEO and founder of INvolve. “They have not only achieved success in their own careers but have made it their mission to make change real happen within their own organisations and across wider society.”
1) Mauro Gregorio, business president, consumer solutions, Dow
Mauro leads one of the most diversified business units at Dow, which is a cultural amalgamation of two large mergers in the company’s history. He credits the company advancement in inclusion to his largely ethnically diverse and gender balanced leadership team.
Mauro initiated a successful accountability programme in which each leadership member adopts a global site solely to foster inclusion, improve working conditions and better employee engagement at all levels.
A strong believer that “education is THE accelerator of Inclusion,” Mauro is active in education programmes for students of colour and diverse ethnic backgrounds, ranging from engaging with African American universities to providing scholarship and fundraising for community colleges.
Mauro is a member of the USA-Brazil CEO Council and meets regularly with high-level officials from both governments to discuss actions to improve trade and collaboration in educational programmes which create bridges for social advancement.
2) Kanya King, CEO, MOBO Organisation
Since founding the MOBO Awards in 1996, Kanya has been a key voice for diversity in music and the arts. Working with the London Theatre Consortium to address the lack of executive-level diversity in theatre is just one example.
For 2020, she announced a year of cultural events to coincide with the MOBO Awards Homecoming. Together with the MOBO Trust and their partners, she will launch a “million hours of opportunity” campaign for young people of colour to engage and interact with culture through music creation, writing, producing, design, coding, talks and business.
As a member of the Arts and Media Honours Committee, Kanya helps ensure a diverse selection of candidates. She is also a member of the Creative Industries Council, prioritising D&I. In 2018, Kanya was awarded a CBE for services to music, diversity and culture.
3) Punit Renjen, CEO, Deloitte Global, Deloitte
Punit is the first Indian-born CEO to lead a “Big Four” accounting firm and has worked diligently at Deloitte to create an inclusive culture that reflects his personal journey.
His belief that there’s strength in diversity is reflected in his signature initiatives: Deloitte’s WorldClass, refreshed Shared Values, and ALL IN, which aims to increase the number of women and minority leaders throughout the organisation.
Outside Deloitte, Punit has been a supporter of the activities of the Office of Multicultural Affairs at Willamette University, his alma mater. The Office of Multicultural Affairs is housed in the Renjen Center.
Punit is a member of the Business Roundtable, a member of the International Business Council of the World Economic Forum, vice-chairman of the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum and recently concluded his term as the chairman of the United Way Worldwide. In February 2020, he was recognized by the Oregon Historical Society as a “history maker” for his visionary business leadership.
4) Ajay Banga, president and CEO, Mastercard
Ajay is co-chair of Mastercard’s global inclusion and diversity council, where he pushes to provide a level playing field and encourages colleagues to use their unique perspectives as a competitive differentiator. He is a founding trustee of the U.-India Strategic Partnership Forum and a member of the US-India CEO Forum.
Among other prominent positions, Ajay is chairman Emeritus of the America India Foundation, and regularly speaks to executive and student groups on issues which support the principles of D&I. Ajay topped last year’s list.
5) Bina Mehta, partner, KPMG
Bina has over 20 years’ international experience in corporate finance and restructuring and chairs KPMG UK’s Emerging Giants practice.
She is a role model with a strong voice who actively promotes inclusivity. She champions KPMG’s global diversity and inclusion agenda by taking a leading role with women of the future as well as with KPMG’s India Club, which brings together diversity networks to promote inclusion and recognise intersectionality.
Outside KPMG, Bina is: a member of the Fawcett Society Advisory Group on Pay and Progression of Women of Colour; sits on HM Treasury and the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy’s co-sponsored Council for Investing in Female Entrepreneurs; and is a member of the India Business Forum, which promotes bilateral trade and investment.
Bina is an Ambassador for Code First: Girls and passionate about inspiring diverse talent to consider careers in technology. She mentors junior female and BAME colleagues at the firm as well as entrepreneurs.
6) Christina Liciaga, head of protection journeys, HSBC
Christina is a speaker, panellist and vlog contributor on issues of race, diversity and inclusion, as well as a mentor to global BAME talent.
She has increased BAME visibility in senior roles as representative to HSBC’s Global Diversity & Inclusion Taskforce, Co-facilitator of Global Graduate induction, Advisor for Hispanic & Latinx Diversity Committee (USA), and Embrace champion (UK).
Externally, she advises BAME-owned ventures and has founded organisations supporting women of colour, including Women’s Wealth that helps minority women bridge the wealth gap. Christina is an Executive Trustee at JUSTICE, an all-party law reform and human rights organisation working to strengthen the UK justice system, and served on the Increasing Judicial Diversity Working Group, which delivered nation-wide proposals to counter structural barriers limiting diverse talent from reaching the judiciary’s highest levels.
In 2020, she was recognised in the Top 10 Customer Experience Professionals in UK and in 2018 named Top 100 BAME Leaders in Business.
7) Anre Williams, group president, global merchant & network services, American Express
Anré is a passionate leader committed to enhancing diversity and inclusion inside and outside of the workplace. He leads American Express’ Executive Black Engagement Network, a group of 61 members that comprise the company’s most senior black executives globally.
Anré readily participates in a broad range of D&I efforts globally, from enterprise-wide events like the American Express Global Women’s Conference, to local celebrations of International Women’s Day, to business-unit specific forums like Finance's D&I Symposium for black and Latina leaders.
He is a member of the Wharton Graduate Executive Board at University of Pennsylvania, where he is helping to increase financial support for African American students, including through establishing an African American MBA Student Support Fund. Anré is also a member of the Executive Leadership Council, which works to advance black executives and prepare the next generation of corporate leaders.
8) Ara Tucker, VP, talent and culture, Audible
At Audible, Ara leads an integrated group focused on attracting, hiring, onboarding, developing and engaging a broad spectrum of employees at all stages of their careers – from high school interns to senior leaders.
The Talent and Culture teams ensure that Audible is an inclusive and progressive workplace by providing distinctive candidate and employee experiences, as well as talent management solutions across the globe.
Prior to joining Audible, Ara served in diversity and inclusion leadership roles in the financial and legal sectors. Ara also worked in higher education where she focused on matters related to academic, administrative and budgetary planning. Ara began her career as a corporate attorney.
A visible and vocal minority leader, Ara regularly shares her story as an openly gay leader of colour in a variety of settings including: prominent speaking engagements, LinkedIn and via her personal website, 'I'm Here Too'.
9) Dinesh Paliwal, senior adviser to the board and CEO, HARMAN
Talent development is at the top of Dinesh’s agenda as senior advisor to the Board and CEO of HARMAN, particularly for women and ethnic minority communities. This has led to the implementation of training programmes including the Hungry Cubs and Hungry Tigers initiatives, and the Leadership Experience Acceleration Programme, which have gained recognition for HARMAN as an employer of choice, including in the Profiles in Diversity Journal.
Dinesh's family foundation, the Ila & Dinesh Paliwal Foundation, provides financial and advisory support to promote discovery and innovation among underrepresented populations in STEAM. Dinesh is also a member of the US-India CEO Forum and the US-India business Council, among many others.
10) Dr Paula C H Franklin, chief medical officer, Bupa Group & chief medical and risk officer, Bupa Global & UK Bupa
Paula is the Executive Sponsor for Bupa's Global Diversity & Inclusion agenda, specifically tasked with promoting women and BAME colleagues in leadership.
Recently, Bupa committed to working towards mandatory ethnicity pay gap reporting and hosted the East London Business Alliance's 'Board Match' event, where charities that support underrepresented groups into employment were invited into the company.
Prior to her current role, Paula was chair of the Bupa UK Foundation. During this time, the Foundation worked with the Taylor Bennet Foundation, aiming to encourage more BAME graduates to pursue a career in communications.
11) Adrian Joseph, partner and head of AI, EMEIA and UK, EY financial services, Ernst & Young (EY)
Adrian joined BT in February 2020 and was previously a partner and head of AI for EMEIA and UK at EY (Ernst & Young) Financial Services until January 2020.
At EY he was an adviser to the Race Diversity Committee and worked to improve focus, processes and metrics across the organisation. In 2018, he achieved 50% BAME and 50% women recruitment in leading a team of 200.
Adrian was a non-executive director with the Home Office for over four years until January 2020, where he was a member of the Race Board and contributed to the Home Office D&I strategy. He is also a NED on the People Board of the Cabinet Office, where he challenges government-wide plans and injects an external perspective on race diversity strategies and policies.
Adrian was awarded an OBE for services to equality and diversity in business in the 2019 New Year's Honours List and is on the Advisory Board of Business in the Community.
12) Manoj Raghunandanan, global president, self care, Johnson & Johnson
Manoj is the executive sponsor and founding member of Johnson & Johnson’s Diversity Marketing Team, focused on recruitment, retention, development and advancement of diverse talent. Additionally, he works to make Johnson & Johnson a top employer choice for all African-Ancestry talent as executive sponsor of the African Ancestry Leadership Council.
Manoj sits on the advisory board for the Academy of National Advertisers' Alliance for Inclusion & Multicultural Marketing, and on Google's Advisory Board for Multicultural Marketing. Manoj is a member of the Jack and Jill Father's Auxiliary, which is dedicated to nurturing future African American leaders.
13) Andrew Pearce, managing director, operations, Accenture
Andrew is one of Accenture's global cross-cultural leads, with responsibility for educating colleagues about working across cultures and ethnicities. He is an executive sponsor of the Accenture African Caribbean Network and works with Accenture's global leadership on the broader D&I agenda to further the retention, progression and development of black talent.
He is UK chair of the Executive Leadership Council and vice-chair of their International Presence Committee, an organisation that is committed to advancing the role and contributions of black executives and preparing the next generation of corporate leaders.
Andrew also mentors BAME professionals across sectors, encouraging his mentees to support discussions on race, and regularly speaks to BAME students at inner-city schools on aspiration and inclusion.
14) Nazreen Visram, head of charities, Barclays
At Barclays, Nazreen is co-chair of the bank’s internal diversity initiative Embrace, where she has supported the establishment of both the Asian and Black Professionals’ Forums. Nazreen also works with Barclays’ Faith Forums. She is passionate about inclusion, creating the Network of Networks to promote intersectionality across all diversity networks, many of which Nazreen is a member of.
As well as being a HeforShe champion, Nazreen mentors junior ethnic minority colleagues, regularly runs employability skills workshops at local schools and colleges and provides work experience programmes to students from diverse backgrounds.
Nazreen is committed to voluntary service, serving as National Council Member for the Women’s Portfolio for the Ismaili Muslim Council UK, delivering conferences and events and enabling access, support and empowerment initiatives for women and their families. Nazreen is currently on the board of a school and was a finalist for the Asian Women of Achievement Awards and for the British Muslim Awards.
15) Sophie Chandauka, executive director, global CAO shared services and banking operations, Morgan Stanley
Sophie provides connectivity between strategic initiatives affecting the multicultural talent agenda across geographies internally and externally.
In 2019, as an Ambassador for Everywoman, she negotiated sponsorship of the inaugural Everywoman in India career development forum involving 50 companies, including Morgan Stanley. She is co-founder of The Black British Business Awards (BBBAwards), endorsed by the three Prime Ministers. The BBBAwards runs a mid-career ethnic minority Talent Accelerator hosted by Morgan Stanley.
Over 50 high-potential professionals from 20 top tier corporations have taken part, with exceptional results in terms of career progression. The BBBAwards spearheaded the award winning Boardroom programme with Deloitte which has trained more than 50 aspiring ethnic minority non-executive directors since 2017. Sophie Chairs The Network of Networks – Multicultural (TNON), which trains employee network leaders from over 85 corporations to be strategically relevant and impactful.
Sophie serves as Strategic Advisor to Morgan Stanley’s African and Caribbean Business Alliance.
16) Timothy Wilkins, global partner for client sustainability, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Tim leads Freshfields’ global practice on client sustainability. He is the first black partner in the US offices and has pioneered numerous initiatives to support black colleagues and people of colour at his firm, including co-founding the Global Black Affinity Network; establishing a 12-year running mentoring program for NYC public high school students to provide college prep and professional experiences with international lawyers; and launching a Diversity Film Series that included a firmwide Black History Month film premier.
Tim works to support black and minority ethnic communities more broadly through his board positions with the NYC Economic Development Association (appointed by the Mayor), New York Public Radio (Vice-Chair), and New York Public Theatre (Co-chair of Governance).
He also co-founded the New York Circular City Initiative, a program to develop a circular economic system that promotes greater employment and a greener environment for the city, including its less advantaged neighbourhoods.
17) Irvinder Goodhew, transformation director, Lloyds Banking Group
Irvinder plays a critical role as a core member of Lloyds Banking Group I&D OpCO, and leads Inclusion & Diversity within the Group Transformation Division.
She is a passionate advocate and role model for ethnic minority colleagues. She has a track record for driving change and making a tangible difference to increase ethnic minority representation at senior levels and she leads interventions which support the Group's public goals.
Among other initiatives, Irvinder spearheaded a tech returner programme, boosting diversity in the talent pipeline through encouraging those on career breaks to return to employment. Recognising BAME is a broad categorisation, she led interventions to support the progression and confidence of colleagues from black heritage communities.
Irvinder launched the group's B.O.L.D. community (Black Organisation for Leadership Development), and empowered colleagues to take ownership of Black History Month celebrations.
18) Alan Bowser, co-head, Americas region, Bridgewater Associates
Alan Bowser is co-head of the Americas region at Bridgewater Associates, overseeing client relationships in the US and Canada for the world’s largest hedge fund.
A member of the firm’s Diversity Council and senior sponsor of the Bridgewater Black Network, he is a leader in shaping Bridgewater's diversity and inclusion strategy, with an emphasis on attracting and retaining African American talent. He joined Bridgewater in 2011.
Beyond Bridgewater, Alan is a board member for the Robert Toigo Foundation, which prepares underrepresented talent for leadership and helps businesses create environments where those individuals can thrive.
He has also been a member of the Executive Leadership Council and a board member of the NY Urban League. His D&I leadership — including his involvement with 100 Black Men of Stamford — has been recognised by officials such as US Congressman Jim Himes. Alan holds a bachelor’s degree from University of Pennsylvania and a master’s degree from Oxford.
19) Suresh Raj, chief business development officer, Vision7 International (Blue Impact)
Suresh sits on the Global Board for Vision7 International, and is executive sponsor for the Diversity & Inclusion Steering Committee.
Through this, he provides counsel, direction and operational change to the way the organisation recruits, manages and involves talent.
He actively pushes for recruitment of senior talent from minority backgrounds to spearhead cultural change. Outside of work Suresh is also executive sponsor for numerous networks focused on personal and professional development of black, Asian and Latin communities.
Last year, Suresh was invited to chair a conversation on humanity and race at the TED 2019 conference, and regularly appears as a panellist and speaker on D&I topics. He is also an inaugural member of The Alliance, a group of global senior LGBT+ leaders using their collective influence to drive corporate and social change for minorities.
20) Jonathan Mildenhall, CEO & co-founder, TwentyFirstCenturyBrand
Jonathan's commitment to diversity and inclusion is reflected in the values of his company. D&I is always considered when looking at new talent, and TwentyFirstCenturyBrand (21CB) has built a summer internship program that recruits interns from College Track, a non-profit which empowers students from underserved communities to graduate from college.
Jonathan is also an executive committee member and national board member for College Track. 21CB offers interns valuable exposure to marketing and brand strategy, while committing to full-time permanent work placements for the most deserving who pass through the programme.
Additionally over the last few years, Jonathan has advised many high-profile tech and startup companies in San Francisco on how to become more diverse through tangible actions.
He is also a partner with Alma, which supports non-profits and empowers organisations that further diversity and inclusion in marketing and advertising.
21) Justin Carty, senior director, CBRE
Justin is a real estate and funding specialist who has advised on more than £10bn ($13bn) of transactions. He Founded CBRE’s Multi-Cultural Network, is head of the CBRE Race Taskforce, and a member of the CBRE UK Diversity Steering Group.
He ensures that D&I is central to CBRE, resulting in initiatives such as unconscious bias training for senior staff, the inclusion of D&I objectives in the appraisal process and ensuring a wide variety of D&I events are held. Justin and the Multi-Cultural Network's work has resulted in the collation and analysis of data in relation to BAME staff, CBRE signing the Race in Work Charter and the creation of a Race Taskforce.
Justin is also vice-chairman of DiverseCity Surveyors, which focuses on promoting BAME issues across the property industry. His DiverseCity Surveyors activity has contributed to mentorship programmes and work experience opportunities for minority professionals and teenagers.
22) Chika Aghadiuno, group enterprise & operational risk director, Aviva
As co-sponsor for the Aviva BAME Network, lead on inclusion in the Aviva Global Risk Function and a member of the UK Aviva Inclusion Council, Chika is a visible and accessible minority leader at Aviva.
Chika has spearheaded various diversity & inclusion initiatives outside Aviva, connecting them whenever possible. Examples include: a 2019 venture exploring the impact of race and education on recruitment for the black community, in partnership with the Forward Institute which promotes responsible leadership; support of the Amos Bursary, for which she is also a professional mentor; and support for Beyond the Classroom, a London-based social enterprise working to support the wider needs of less advantaged young girls and women.
Helping young people from less advantaged and minority backgrounds has been a key focus for Chika through engagement with schools, work experience initiatives and informal individual mentoring. Chika chairs the Diversity Advisory Group for the UK Actuarial Profession and is a member of the Advisory Board for TWIN (The Women's Insurance Network).
23) Tonia Bottoms, managing director & senior managing counsel, BNYMellon Pershing
At BNY Mellon, Tonia is on the Global Leadership Council of IMPACT, the organisation's multicultural business resource group, where she spearheads initiatives for the recruitment and retention of minority employees. She has developed a mentoring programme, identified diverse colleagues in middle management and below, and provided additional mentoring and sponsorship to support the promotion of diverse candidates. Tonia also chairs IMPACT's Black Leadership Forum, which is dedicated to building the talent pipeline and positioning BNY Mellon as a preeminent employer for black professionals.
Additionally, Tonia serves as is a member of the Diversity & Inclusion Advisory Council to the CEO. Offering her experiences and perspectives, she works to inform the strategy on diversity and inclusion across the enterprise and serve as a sounding board for senior leadership.
Tonia has a commitment to her community, and currently serves on the Board of Directors for Girl Scouts of Nassau County, which provides girls with opportunities for community service and leadership development.
24) Shelina Janmohamed, vice-president, Islamic marketing, Ogilvy
Shelina is a member of Ogilvy's Inclusion Board, WPP's Inclusion board, and of WPP’s Roots Steering Committee, a global network that brings together individuals from diverse, underrepresented cultural backgrounds.
She is also vice-president of Islamic marketing, where she champions Muslim expression and engagement within Ogilvy.
Shelina is purposefully visible and vocal as an ethnic minority board member and drives tangible change for her colleagues. She is a board member at IMPRESS, a judge for the D&AD New Blood Awards and the Gerety Awards, and an adviser to the AMAL Foundation, which promotes Muslim cultural and creative activity. She has been working with Campaign Magazine to highlight D&I issues and regularly contributes to other newspapers and publications.
25) Marva Smalls, global head of inclusion, ViacomCBS and executive vice-president, public affairs, kids & family entertainment brands, ViacomCBS Domestic Media Networks, ViacomCBS
Last year, Marva launched Viacom's first Inclusion Week, celebrating and strengthening diversity and inclusion across the company.
All levels of the company came together for a week of compelling programming and immersive experiences which highlighted D&I topics. She also published Viacom's first Diversity and Inclusion Report, outlining the company's work to elevate diverse voices, which included demographic data about the employee base for use in benchmarking and goal-setting.
Marva launched Viacom's Content Creation Council, applying a D&I lens to all aspects of content creation, and the Viewfinders Emerging TV Directors Programme.
She is a founding member of the Black Economic Alliance, she serves on the boards of the American Theatre Wing, the International African American Museum, the James Beard Foundation and Synovus Bank/South Carolina, among others. She founded the Marva Smalls Endowment, which awards funds to young people and families from underrepresented groups.
26) Rupal Kantaria, director, Oliver Wyman Forum, Oliver Wyman
When convening business leaders for the Oliver Wyman Forum, Rupal ensures diversity and intersectionality play a leading role.
Both within and outside of Oliver Wyman, Rupal has championed mentoring and reverse-mentoring programmes, ‘best practice’ sharing, and cross-company networking. She co-founded MissionINCLUDE, convening C-suite leaders to foster inclusion across all diversity strands.
Led by Lord Popat, she co-hosts the only black and minority ethnic International Women’s Day speaker showcase at the House of Commons, giving a platform to diverse stories from all genders and providing tangible actions for change.
Rupal has led numerous other initiatives, including: exploring the racial diversity at client companies and reviewing how the client interacts with their BAME employees; engaging BAME leaders to champion the BAME agenda; and reshaping flagship events to prioritise diverse panels and attendance.
27) Richard Iferenta, partner, KPMG
Richard is a partner sponsor of KPMG UK's African Caribbean Network, and worked with the firm's managing partner to set up the Black Heritage Working Group, bringing together senior stakeholders to deliver a strategy to build on inclusion for Black Heritage colleagues, including reviewing project allocation processes and tailored exit interviews.
Richard chairs the Race Diversity Board of Business in the Community, and has championed initiatives including the Race at Work Charter, which has been adopted by the UK government, and collaborating with the government on Ethnicity Pay Gap reporting.
He established the KPMG Black Leaders Network and mentors a vast range of professionals to build confidence and navigate progression. He is regularly invited to speak publicly on D&I topics.
28) Dr Nneka Abulokwe, OBE, founder; chair board nominations committee; non-executive director, MicroMax Consulting; ISACA; University of Cambridge
In addition to being CEO and Founder of MicroMax Consulting, Dr Abulokwe serves as a non-executive Director at the University of Cambridge and Chairs the Board Nominations Committee at ISACA, amongst others.
In 2019, Nneka received an OBE for services to business, and has introduced a system of governance which promotes greater empowerment of people and inclusion to improve business performance, in the digital economy.
She mentors with EMpower and the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, and is often found on BBC national and international press speaking on boardroom diversity and tech. Nneka is a passionate proponent of women and girls in tech and has supported programmes for ethnic minority women's inclusion at the UN General Assembly, the UK and across Africa.
She is the first black female professionals to sit at board-level of a multi-national tech company in the UK and the first black woman admitted to the Information Technologists Livery Company. Nneka is an international keynote speaker on digital, governance and celebrating diversity in tech.
29) Ernest Nicolas, SVP, operations & engineering services, Rockwell Automation
Ernest is an executive adviser for the African American Professional Network at Rockwell Automation and founded the Black Executive Leadership Team focused on elevating inclusiveness for black executives within the organisation.
He continues to sponsor recruitment at national diversity engineering conferences including the National Society of Black Engineers and the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers. He has championed establishing Rockwell Automation’s 'Navigating Your Career as a Black Professional' development series, which has become a staple at the National Society of Black Engineers’ regional, national and professional development conferences.
As a member of the Executive Leadership Council (ELC), he has introduced Rockwell Automation to the ELC’s training programmes which serve to complement existing programmes to enrich development for black professionals. He serves the board of directors for the Milwaukee Urban League and the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s supply chain programme advisory board.
30) Ricardo Mora, partner, co-head of FICC Americas sales, securities division, Goldman Sachs
A visible advocate for diversity, Ricardo is senior sponsor of the Global Markets Division Black and Hispanic/Latino Council at Goldman Sachs (GS), where he leads a diverse team in his role as co-head of FICC Americas Sales.
He works to recruit diverse talent for key strategic roles, and advocated for diverse talent for the Global Markets Division summer internship program. Ricardo is on the board of visitors for the University of California, Berkeley, working to promote diversity to the university's leadership, shaping and advancing key initiatives, and increasing diverse representation on the board.
He has also served on the board of the Orphaned Starfish Foundation, a non-profit which supports the construction of vocational training centres in orphanages throughout Latin America.
31) Raj Verma, senior vice-president, human resources, Sodexo
At Sodexo, Raj is the executive sponsor for ethnicity and sits on the culture & origins advisory board, pushing for a clearer, pragmatic and more results-driven approach to initiatives.
He encouraged Sodexo to sign up to the Empower Ethnic Pay Audit charter, and has driven the need to share best practice throughout the industry.
He has often been invited to speak publicly on D&I topics, and mentors numerous colleagues. Raj was appointed to the Board of Trustees at Barnardo's, increasing board diversity. With 20% of the charity's service users coming from a BAME background, Raj visibly supports their programme of events to engage with wider BAME and Faith audiences.
32) Albertha Charles, partner, PwC
Albertha is a member of PwC's Talent & Diversity Council, Culture and Diversity Leader on the Transaction Services Leadership Team, and Sponsor Partner of the PwC Multicultural Business Network. She played a key role in sponsoring and hosting PwC & Aon's Black to the Future Black History Month forum, and in the PwC Colour Brave campaign.
She established a network of culture champions in her business unit, launched a Culture Café series, and hosts a 'This is me' campaign, encouraging people to be more comfortable in their own skin at work.
She is a member of the Race Equality Board at Business in the Community, where she led the development of an 'inclusion toolkit'. She has showcased aspects of PwC's inclusion journey at the Houses of Parliament and at the House of Lords, and has participated in Number 10's Black History Month celebrations.
33) Roni Savage, founder & CEO, Jomas Associates (Engineering & Environmental)
As Founder & CEO of Jomas Associates, an engineering and environmental consultancy, Roni is a pioneer in the engineering and construction industry.
She is dedicated to changing the landscape for minorities in business. Roni sits on numerous boards, including advising the London Mayor's Fund on social mobility and D&I. She has received a host of accolades for her work with Jomas Associates and for her commitment to inclusion for women and ethnic minorities. She is also a board member for the YMCA, and the National Leader for Women in STEM and Policy Chair for Construction at Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).
She is regularly invited to speak publicly on D&I topics and mentors numerous women and BAME professionals.
34) William ‘BJ’ Trach, partner, Latham & Watkins
BJ is a member of Latham’s Executive Committee, for which increasing Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) throughout the global firm is a key strategic priority. BJ serves as Executive Committee liaison to Latham’s Diversity Leadership Committee, which he previously led as Global Chair.
During his tenure, the group launched a Diversity Leadership Academy, established eight affinity groups, including three for ethnic minority lawyers, spearheaded a firm-wide Inclusion Initiative to achieve broader engagement, expanded programmes to enhance the pipeline of diverse law students, and revamped D&I training for all employees.
BJ has served on the board, and a lifetime member, of the Massachusetts Black Lawyers Association, where he has attended countless D&I events and has mentored young law students and lawyers over the last decade. He is also involved with the Black Law Students Association at Harvard Law School, where he attends the annual job fair, among other events.
35) Gian Power, founder & CEO, TLC Lions
As founder and CEO of TLC Lions, Gian's mission is to ignite emotion in workplaces through storytelling. His work has supported over 120 organisations covering 19 industries reaching over 40,000 people in audiences in over 57 countries.
Through TLC Lions, Gian's brought together 25 ordinary people with extraordinary stories sharing their stories around diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
As a result, Gian has been sponsored by Baroness Verma, UN Chair for Women in the UK to host a quarterly roundtable alongside the Baroness discussing D&I in the workplace with a focus on solutions. This led to an invitation to share his learnings at Number 10 and with members of the Royal Family as well as sitting on the board of Mental Health Conference – This Can Happen.
36) Zishan Nurmohamed, partner, EY
Zishan leads Diversity & Inclusiveness for EY’s Assurance service line, he is part of EY’s Race Working Group and was previously partner sponsor for the EY Muslim Community.
He created a video series, 'EY Through My Eyes,’ aiming to educate insiders on what it feels like to be an outsider, with a broad focus on race, sexuality, gender, working parents, neuro-diversity and social mobility. He has also started a series of talks nationwide called 'Let's talk about race', encouraging safe, interactive discussions focused on ethnic minority development and progression.
Zishan is a London Regional Leadership member of Mosaic, focusing on children from underrepresented backgrounds and promoting growth through entrepreneurialism. Zishan was responsible for integrating the annual Mosaic Enterprise Challenge winners with a special award at EY's flagship Entrepreneur of the Year event.
37) Mitul Shah, partner, Deloitte
Mitul sits on Deloitte UK's Ethnicity Council, representing the Tax & Legal business, and has led an initiative to increase personal data collection of ethnicity profiles following a presentation to the executive board around the challenges and opportunities the business faced from a BAME perspective.
He led the development and design of BAME stakeholder workshops and the development of the resulting ethnicity leadership programme for Deloitte's director population, in addition to an education programme for Deloitte's senior partners to encourage advocacy.
Mitul is a lead mentor in the Business in the Community mentoring circles, and contributes to Deloitte's 'BAME in the Boardroom' programme.
38) Paul Trussell, managing director, head of consumer, retail equity research, Deutsche Bank
Paul is the founder & co-chair of the Black Leadership Forum (BLF) at Deutsche Bank and sits on the Steering Committee for the Multi-Cultural Partnership.
The BLF provides empowering programming, including professional development workshops and opportunities to connect with senior leadership at the bank. Paul is a diversity champion within the Investment Bank for the graduate analyst and summer intern programs, participating directly in recruitment, interviewing and mentorship.
He has elevated the executive leadership dialogue on ethnic minority inclusion, providing a 12-point action plan to improve D&I efforts. Paul is International Grand Treasurer of Iota Phi Theta Fraternity Inc., America's fifth largest predominantly African American social service fraternity, and is a member of the Leadership Council, a financial presenter and a Youth Business Competition Judge with World of Money, an NYC-based non-profit organisation.
39) Raza Hasan, chief risk officer, retail banking and wealth management, HSBC Bank, Canada
At HSBC (HSBA.L) Wealth and Personal Banking, Canada, Raza is the lead adviser for Diversity and New Immigrant strategy to the CEO of the division.
In this role, he provides advice on recruiting talent that is reflective of diversity and the organisation's communities, and on providing banking solutions that meet the needs of new immigrant clients, allowing them to build credit history in Canada and settle more quickly.
He has also worked with community partners to provide newcomers with mentorship and guidance on job searching and the Canadian job landscape. Raza is a member of the leading think tank, C.D. Howe Institute and its Financial Services Research Initiative Council, where he provides input into various initiatives including leveraging new immigrants and diversity in the financial services ecosystem.
As a board member of the Oakville Hospital Foundation, Raza is assisting the board in hiring more diverse members and is helping the hospital to engage with a wider donor community reflecting a broader ethnic background.
Raza is the proud recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and of the Canada Sesquicentennial Award for his contributions to Canada including on diversity and inclusion.
40) Tevin Tobun, CEO, GV Group, Gate Ventures
As the CEO of GV Group, Tevin is a strong advocate for BAME issues within business. Within GV Group, he has driven major initiatives which have helped to support ethnic minorities in the workplace.
These include the sponsorship of courses, as well as reframing recruitment policies to ensure that BAME candidates are offered the same opportunities as others. Tevin is a regular contributor in the industry press and speaker at business focused events, including the recent Racial Equality in Leadership Forum and Arena Network, a networking association for the hospitality sector.
He also chairs Inspirational You, a BAME-focused organisation empowering young entrepreneurs. Alongside this, he is a patron of Springboard, a charity focused on employment for disadvantaged groups. Tevin founded the GV Scholarship, which helps disadvantaged students with university fees and offers professional work experience and mentoring.
41) Roland Ilube, head of MA and commercial finance DS, Shell UK
Roland is an executive sponsor for the Shell (RDSB.L) African and Caribbean Network, and is a member of the Shell Global Finance Diversity and Inclusion Group.
He often features as a panellist for UK employees on D&I topics, including ethnicity at work, gender pay gap reporting, and the importance of ethnicity declaration.
He advocates for consideration of ethnicity-related issues in Shell's senior leadership groups, with tangible results including Shell UK becoming one of the founder signatories of the Race at Work Charter, explicit D&I and ethnicity consideration during a recent reorganisation, and a commitment to voluntarily publish an ethnicity pay gap report.
Roland is a member of the Business in the Community Race Equality Leadership Team, where he provided input into the development of the Race at Work Charter and the development of a series of executive sponsor toolkits for race.
42) Kamel Hothi OBE, non-executive director & trustee, TLC Lions
Kamel is a non-executive director for TLC Lions, which has supported hundreds of companies in improving culture and inclusion. She chairs a round table in Westminster for these companies to collaborate and champion change faster.
As an ex-banker, Kamel worked her way up from cashier to director, strategist and architect of numerous programmes and initiatives including the Asian strategy that helped access to finance for entrepreneurs from minority communities.
Her campaigning for equality and fairness was recognised by the Queen in 2017 with an OBE and she has been awarded an honorary doctorate for her cultural cohesion work.
Kamel is an emotional speaker and has been invited around the world to speak on gender and cultural challenges. She is also an adviser and trustee to several charities, including the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust and the Alzheimer’s Society to name a few.
43) Allyn L Shaw, president & chief technology officer, Recycle Track Systems
Allyn is instrumental in breaking down barriers for minority groups. A board member of Out and Equal, Allyn spearheaded the first-ever transgender recruiting effort.
He was also among the first set of black executives to launch the Black Executive Leadership Council and has been actively involved in the intersection of tech and diversity with Out in Tech, Lesbians who Tech and Out 4 U. Allyn's commitment to fostering an inclusive environment has received national recognition.
Most recently, Allyn received the Brooklyn Nets Jason Collins Award sponsored by the NBA for courage and leadership in the LGBTQ community. He is an OUTstanding LGBT+ Role Model, a Diversity Best Practices' Above and Beyond Award winner and named to Diversity MBA world's top 100 business leaders under 50.
Allyn is currently the President and CTO of RTS, a waste and recycling management company that combines technology with high-touch service to make disposal easier, smarter and more responsible.
44) Karen S Carter, chief human resources officer & chief inclusion officer, Dow
As Dow’s first Chief Inclusion Officer, Karen developed and implemented a global inclusion and diversity (I&D) strategy that is woven into the corporate business strategy, coupling I&D metrics with financial and safety results. Under her leadership, Dow published its first inclusion report, and accelerated spend with small and diverse suppliers to more than $1bn since 2017.
Additionally, global participation in Dow’s 10 Employee Resource Groups increased more than 25%, nearing best in class levels and over 80% of people leaders lead by example through their engagement.
She renewed focus on sponsorship with through the creation of Advocacy in Action, a new talent development program that pairs African American protégés with senior leader sponsors to drive career achievement. Karen serves on the advisory board of Catalyst and is a member of the Executive Leadership Council.
Her contributions have resulted in being named to Black Enterprise’s 2018 Top Executives in Diversity list.
45) Nilufer von Bismarck, partner, Slaughter and May
Nilufer is Slaughter and May's D&I partner, with strategic oversight of the firm's inclusion initiatives and employee networks.
She provided leadership to the 'Inclusion Allies' initiative to recognise how everyday exchanges might lead to feelings of inclusion or exclusion, and is partner sponsor for the Muslim Network, supporting social and awareness-raising events. She has hosted the firm's annual graduate recruitment event, 'A World of Difference', collaborating with university BME societies, and hosted the firm's 2019 Black History Month event.
Nilufer is on the Board of Trustees for IntoUniversity, which tackles educational disadvantage, and has spearheaded their partnership with Slaughter and May. She leads workshops and advises on how clients can develop their own D&I initiatives, and mentors numerous ethnic minority professionals.
46) Annette Byron, partner, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Annette co-leads Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer's Global Black Affinity Network and drove their 2019 Talent Meeting, bringing colleagues together for a programme of fireside chats, a diversity hackathon, panel discussions and networking, taking the resulting initiatives forward into action between the network and the firm’s wider management.
She is the Partner Sponsor for Social Mobility, and she is on the firm's graduate recruitment panel and the cross-function social mobility committee, helping those from underrepresented backgrounds thrive at the firm. Annette is the driving force behind the Freshfields Stephen Lawrence Scholarship Scheme, a recruitment, development and mentoring scheme run by volunteers from Freshfields and its clients.
Until very recently, having served the maximum terms, Annette was Board Director of PRIME, the legal sector charity alliance between law firms committed to improving access to those from less socially mobile backgrounds.
47) George Madrigal, CEO, Penserra
As CEO of Penserra, George pushes managers to recruit a more ethnically diverse workforce, continuing with this commitment although Penserra already has 50% more diversity than the industry average.
He works closely with the community and with non-profits to ensure qualified diverse candidates are found for the internship program. Recently, George signed the Hispanic Promise, a pledge to hire, promote, retain and celebrate Hispanic colleagues.
He is on the Board of Directors of Pangea Legal Services, who work to provide legal resources to wrongfully detained immigrants, where he has helped to develop better non-profit oversight of budgeting and strategic decisions. George created the Founders Scholarship Program, providing scholarships to primarily Latinx high school students entering college.
He is also a founding member of the NICSA Diversity Council CEO Advisory Council and a member of the finance committee for Make-A-Wish Greater Bay Area and the Community Foundation of Mendocino County.
48) Sharon Blackman, EMEA legal head currencies, frontier markets and non-G10 rates, managing director & general counsel, Citi
At Citi, Sharon is a member of the EMEA Legal Diversity Committee and the Global Legal Diversity Committee.
She is a member of Citi Roots, and co-chairs the EMEA Pro Bono Committee. She has organised regional and global training on various D&I topics, including unconscious bias, mental health and cross-cultural working, all to promote a more inclusive environment.
She has arranged Citi's participation in a mentoring programme for law undergraduates with a social mobility and ethnic minority focus, and has structured Citi's participation in social mobility and ethnic minority-focused programmes offered by law firms.
Sharon is a mentor with the Black Solicitors Network, and has participated as a panel speaker and role model in Urban Synergy events at Lewisham Schools and Canary Wharf venues, among other high-profile speaking engagements.
49) Sarah Lee, partner, Slaughter and May
Sarah is the partner sponsor for DIVERSE at Slaughter and May, and was the firm's first D&I partner, responsible for establishing Slaughter and May's eight employee networks. Last year she launched a buddy scheme for ethnic minority trainees, and has sponsored the firm's female leadership development programme for the past seven years, ensuring ethnic minority representation.
She has helped redesign the graduate recruitment approach with a focus on diversity, worked on enhancing the firm's Black History Month celebrations and has mentored various ethnic minorities professionally, including a student through the firm's 'Law Springboard' programme with upReach.
Sarah launched and hosted the 'Diversity in the City' series initiative to connect ethnic minority professionals across the City, and as a Commissioner for the Judicial Appointments Commission works to promote greater diversity within the judiciary.
50) Arlene Isaacs-Lowe, global head of corporate social responsibility, Moody's Corporation
Arlene is a member of Moody’s CSR Council, comprised of the firms most senior executives. She champions non-profit partnerships that support the growth and success of women and BAME entrepreneurs, as well as those that provide diverse students with tools and opportunities to thrive in financial services careers.
She puts forward Moody’s executives for the boards of these organisations for the dual purpose of strengthening advocacy for marginalised communities and effective reverse mentoring of senior leaders.
Arlene is an executive member of Moody's Employee Resource Groups and serves as a role model and sponsor for high potential women and black employees, providing access with an open-door policy. With the Executive Leadership Council, Arlene is co-chair of the International Presence Committee, charged with expanding the membership of global black executives and growing the pipeline of black talent.
She is also a steering committee member of the Black Scholars Initiative, focused on ensuring the successful completion of university degrees.
51) Michael Sherman, chief strategy and transformation officer, BT
At BT, Michael has brought together a community of ethnic minority colleagues to improve networking. He has championed improvement of the company's data collection, allowing BT to better support the development of minority employees through mentorship and guidance.
He has led conversations centred on making BT a diverse and inclusive workforce, and has inspired the next generation of leaders at BT's Ethnic Diversity Network event. Michael is involved with the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, which aims to help students from historically black colleges and universities in order to develop the next generation of African American leaders.
He also engages with disenfranchised communities through his position on the Business Advisory Council, and works with the Dallas Way Metro Dallas to help disenfranchised communities experiencing poverty.
52) Tunji Akintokun MBE, director, head of sales UK, PwC
Tunji is involved with the PwC Multicultural Business Network and the PwC Diversity Mentoring Program, educating on the power of mentors, coaches and sponsors in navigating a career, and providing work experience and mentoring to graduates from diverse backgrounds.
He has used his experience leading ERGs and his involvement with the National Equality Standard to advise clients on D&I programmes. Tunji is the founder of the Ilesha Charitable Trust, which makes ongoing and effective donations to D&I, STEM, Arts, Sports and social mobility causes.
The Trust has provided numerous bursaries for BAME students to study at top universities across the UK and scholarships for female science students in Ghana and Nigeria.
The trust is also a sponsor of the PRECIOUS awards, Warwick University Africa Summit and the successful 'Get Up, Stand Up Now' exhibition at Somerset House celebrating 50 years of Black creativity in the UK.
53) Jed Khan, global director D&AI partner ecosystem lead, Avanade
At Avanade, Jed is an Executive Partner for the Beyond BAME group, and is involved in numerous I&D initiatives, including raising awareness for mental health and learning disabilities, creating new ideas to drive BAME messaging and finding new avenues through which to amplify it, driving the company's I&D agenda and bringing BAME issues to Global Leadership Teams.
Jed was invited, through the AI for Good Hackathon with Microsoft, to lead a team to help the RAF Museum bring the Battle of Britain to life through the eyes of the BAME and LGBT+ communities.
Alongside partners Microsoft, Blue Prism, UiPath and Databricks, Jed formed a European Leaders Group to tackle tough global issues, with diversity and citizen impact high on the list of priorities.
54) Elizabeth Scarpelli, head of global operations & privacy compliance, BNY Mellon
Elizabeth is a role model and advocate for Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) at BNY Mellon and has been involved in a number of key initiatives to drive the company’s D&I strategy, including leading programmes designed to increase consideration of diverse individuals throughout the organisation’s talent lifecycle – from recruitment and development to retention and advancement.
Elizabeth serves: as an active member of the firm’s D&I Advisory Council to the CEO; in numerous leadership positions within the company’s multicultural business resource group, IMPACT; and as a steering committee member for key external partnership initiatives. She has helped to broaden perspectives and foster change within the company and deliver against D&I goals as set by the firm.
Elizabeth serves on the Senior Leadership Council for the Association of Latino Professionals for America for the New York Chapter, regularly speaks at internal and external events, and sponsors and mentors colleagues throughout the company.
55) Fiona Bolton, partner, Simmons & Simmons
At Simmons & Simmons, Fiona launched and co-chairs Emerge, the firm's inaugural BAME network, and has recently introduced a mentoring programme across all levels of the firm.
The network was established as a result of discussions with an advisory board on the development of a BAME action plan, based on the principles of the Race at Work Charter, with Fiona acting as a partner sponsor and spokesperson for BAME inclusion.
Fiona works closely with social mobility charity The Brokerage where she has previously served as a Trustee. She has worked with several client organisations advising on issues of culture and D&I. She also mentors BAME women in the legal profession.
56) Ugo Ojike, managing director, Accenture
Ugo is the co-executive sponsor of Accenture's African Caribbean Network, where she sponsors annual events and spearheads conversations around BAME development activities. She is working with leadership to further the retention, progression and development of black talent.
She also sits on Accenture's Ethnicity Council for the UK and Ireland. She has co-sponsored the ethnicity I&D workstream in the legal function, where she led discussions in workshops on the challenges and opportunities for BAME legal professionals, which have been extended to Accenture's LatinX legal community in North America.
Ugo is a mentor for the Minority Supplier Development UK, Diverse Supplier Development Mentoring Programme, and is particularly proud of the Innovation Hub, which supports innovative ethnic minority-owned businesses and an impressive talent pool of entrepreneurs. Her YouTube ‘Colour Brave’ speech continue to be a catalyst for driving conversations about race in the workplace.
57) Kene Ejikeme, managing director in the securities division, Goldman Sachs
At Goldman Sachs, Kene is co-head of the EMEA Firmwide Black Network (FBN), and is actively involved in informing and advancing the Black talent strategy, leading recruitment initiatives and mentoring Black talent.
He has led efforts to provide a forum for exchanging ideas within the FBN, and to discuss challenges faced by diverse professionals.
The FBN hosts several Black History Month events, featuring internal and external Black leaders and role models. Beyond Goldman Sachs, Kene and a group of other senior finance professionals co-founded Impact X, a double bottom line venture capital company launched to support underrepresented entrepreneurs across Europe. He also dedicates a significant amount of time to mentoring Black youth in London.
58) Chris Brown, executive partner, IBM
Chris is IBM's (IBM) UKI Global Business Services People partner, and IBM’s Industrial Sector Strategic Transformation leader.
In his role as people partner, he is focused on creating an inclusive working environment that empowers and supports all practitioners to do their best work. He is a senior sponsor for the BAME BRG and chairs an Inclusion Council representing BAME, gender, LGBT+, PwDA and faith groups, and actively supports all BRGs and their D&I initiatives.
He also mentors colleagues from underrepresented backgrounds and provides reverse mentoring to other senior executives in IBM. Beyond IBM, Chris works with the College of Policing to assess individuals who are on track for chief constable roles with a view of supporting the police to create more diverse senior leadership team that represent the communities they work in.
59) Segun Osuntokun, managing partner, London office, BCLP
Segun is a founding member of the BCLP Global D&I Board, founder and former chair of the BCLP Social Inclusion & Ethnicity Network, and partner sponsor of the BCLP Race for Change Alumni Community.
The Global D&I Board have reset the firm's approach to diversity, with a focus on representation, hiring, attrition and progression of lawyers of colour. The Social Inclusion & Ethnicity Network has influenced policy and led to BCLP ranking in the top ten of the SMF's Social Mobility Employer Index for three consecutive years.
Segun is a Partner in BCLP’s Commercial Disputes Group and specialises in civil fraud litigation. He also heads BCLP's Africa Group, and is responsible for the firm's development strategy in sub-Saharan Africa. He is involved in mentoring with the Eastside Young Leaders' Academy, and also mentors prospective and trainee BAME solicitors.
60) Kelly McDonald, executive, strategic HR business partner, Irish Life
Kelly is a member of the Irish Life Diversity & Inclusion Steering Group, and provides consultation support to D&I groups from two lines of business.
She launched 'Live your Life' policies for all staff, with a focus on new parents, maternity and paternity leave, and adoption and surrogacy policies. She helped to develop various D&I training programmes for leadership teams, and set up a partnership with DCU to study the impact of D&I interventions at Irish Life.
Kelly is also a mentor on IBM's P-TECH programme, a public education reform initiative that combines secondary school with elements of third-level education and work experience for underprivileged children.
61) Aleida Rios, group head of engineering, BP
Aleida co-chairs BP (BP.L) Women's International Global Executive Committee, where she takes an intersectional approach, having also appeared on panels for the BP Ethnicity BRG and with BP’s CEO discussing the benefits of inclusion.
She is also a member of the Royal Academy of Engineers Diversity and Inclusion Leadership Group, where she participated in and supported the launch of the group's 2020 report on the engineering pay gap. Aleida was awarded the 2019 Texas A&M College of Engineering Outstanding Alumni. She serves on the school’s Chemical Engineering College Advisory Board, promoting engineering to women and ethnic minorities since 2015.
She helped to promote the Year of Engineering 2018 in the UK, a campaign designed to encourage women and ethnic minorities into engineering careers. She was born in Mexico and is a proud wife and mother of 3 boys.
62) Maxine Goddard, head of sales operations & planning, Zurich Insurance Company
Maxine sits on the Executive Committee of the industry-wide Insurance Cultural Awareness Network, with responsibility for partnerships and external relationships. Maxine is also the Principal Advisor and previously chaired the Zurich Cultural Awareness Network, and has been involved in leading Zurich's multicultural D&I strategy and initiatives for over four years.
She spearheaded the reorganisation of Zurich's BAME ERG and significantly widened its national reach. She re-energised the ERG with meaningful initiatives and garnered c-suite executive sponsorship and positive engagement.
The group have established BAME recruitment targets, and monthly data reviews, which have contributed to ethnicity pay gap industry consultations. Maxine was awarded at the 2019 Insurance Age D&I Awards as the Race Equality Champion in insurance. She was also recognised by Insurance Business, Global Top 100 as a person of influence within the insurance industry.
63) Chanel Frazier, chief of staff to global head of multi-asset strategies and global fixed income, BlackRock
As the chief of staff to BlackRock’s head of Multi-Asset Strategies and Global Fixed Income, Chanel takes an intersectional approach to D&I efforts.
Throughout her tenure at the firm, she has focused on the retention of ethnic minority colleagues through mentorship, managerial- and leadership-level advocacy, and contributions to a firm-wide working group focused on how Black professionals experience BlackRock. She is a member of BlackRock’s Black Professionals Network (BPN) and Women’s Initiative Network, and previously served on BPN’s Professional Development Committee.
In addition to her commitments, Chanel works to recruit ethnic minority professionals to BlackRock, serving as a senior representative at national recruiting events for MBA students of colour and as a senior leader interviewer for the BlackRock Founders Scholarship Programme. Chanel proudly serves on the Board of Directors for both the ‘I Have a Dream’ Foundation and ‘Gibney Dance,’an arts and social justice organisation in New York.
64) Justin Onuekwusi, fund manager, head of retail multi-asset funds, Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM)
Justin is a fund manager in a team managing over £65bn at LGIM, one of the world’s largest asset managers.
As part of a team, Justin leads on £6bn and maintains a high profile in the investment industry due to strong fund performance. Justin co-chairs the Legal & General Inclusion Team, which oversees eight LGIM employee networks, and he is also a member of L&G Group’s D&I Committee and chairs the company’s Investment Diversity Working Group.
Justin is a founding member of #talkaboutblack, a movement facilitating breaking down the taboo of talking about ethnicity in society. Through these groups, Justin works both internally and externally to develop cross-industry strategies and policies supporting BAME recruitment, retention and progression.
He is on the Advisory Board for City Hive, which focuses on driving diversity initiatives within asset management and is an ambassador of the Diversity Project, which strives to achieve greater inclusion across the asset management industry.
65) Sujata Bhatia, senior vice-president for merchant services, Europe, American Express
Sujata is the European chair of the Executive Women's Interest Network Committee and co-founder of the Black and Asian Employee Network for American Express in Europe.
A committed champion for women and underrepresented groups at American Express, Sujata has spearheaded numerous intersectional initiatives related to ambition, leadership and community. She is on the Advisory Board for Women in Payments, where she has served as a speaker and awards judge.
She is also committed to supporting the South Asian community, and is an active member of the Indian American Forum for Political Education, which encourages Indians to get involved in politics. She is also involved with a charity that raises funds to help build medical clinics that support visually impaired rural Indians.
66) Satvir Bungar MBE, FCA, MCSI, managing director and head of facilities sector, mergers & acquisitions, BDO
At accountancy and business advisory firm BDO LLP, Satvir works with entrepreneurially-spirited and high-growth businesses advising them on achieving strategic goals through merger and acquisition activity.
Satvir is a strong advocate of diversity & inclusion, taking part in BDO's graduate recruitment campaign to attract a diverse range of talent. As part of the campaign, he mentors numerous colleagues and is a member of BDO’s BAME society.
Satvir is also vice-chairman at Miss Macaroon, a social enterprise focused on increasing diversity of thinking by improving the lives of marginalised young people, and supports the board in delivering its ambitious growth plans.
He was featured in Visa's 2019 Christmas 'Where you Shop Matters' media campaign, which championed Miss Macaroon’s social cause. Satvir is a valued member of the judging panel at PFM Awards, where he works to improve BAME representation in facilities management, a sector in which he has significant experience.
67) Dr Rashada Harry, enterprise account executive, Amazon Web Services/founder, Your Future, Your Ambition
Rashada co-leads Women@AWS in the UK and sits on the advisory board of the BEN Network at Amazon.
She takes an intersectional approach to her diversity and inclusion work, including through mentoring and working with schools. In her previous position at Vodafone, Rashada was a leadership adviser to the multicultural network and Employee Champion to the senior management.
She sits on the board of Talawa, the UK's only black touring theatre company, and she founded Your Future, Your Ambition, leading 30 organisations and 270 individual volunteers to mentor, educate, inspire and encourage 900 students from across the UK to pursue careers in STEM in 2019. To date, YFYA has opened its doors to over 7,000 students, helping to build a more diverse STEM talent pipeline.
68) Javier Morgado, executive producer, CNN
Javier is a lifetime member and former board member of the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, a lifetime member of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, and a member of the National Association for Multi-Ethnicity in Communications and the Radio Television Digital News Association.
He led the recruitment and retention committee on CNN's Diversity Council for several years, and he recruits for CNN and WarnerMedia at diversity journalism conferences every year. He leads professional development sessions at CNN for prospective diverse employees, which have led to numerous hires.
He serves on the board of three national non-profit organisations in New York with an aim to improve diversity in the arts, and has raised money and awareness for the LGBT+ community and for those living with HIV/AIDS for many years.
69) Sanjeev Sharma, chief property portfolio officer, M&G Real Estate Limited
Sanjeev is a longtime supporter and member of the Cultural Awareness Network at M&G, and was co-executive sponsor at its inception. He is also an ally for M&G's LGBT+ Network, and co-executive sponsor of M&G's Mind Matters Network.
Sanjeev participated in Deloitte's BAMEs on Boards programme, which looks to prepare BAME individuals for non-executive director (NED) roles, and presented to the 2019/2020 cohort on his experiences and lessons to be learned from securing his first NED role with a Small Cap Plc. Sanjeev is a member of the National Mentoring Consortium, which aims to promote equality and diversity in graduate recruitment and to enhance the employability of BAME students and students with a disability.
Sanjeev is on the Management Committee of Real Estate Balance, which seeks to address gender and broader diversity imbalances within the sector. He was chosen as M&G Plc’s first ever Inclusion Champion in January 2020.
70) David Ziyambi, partner, Latham & Watkins
David helped to found, and was an inaugural global leader of, Latham's Black Lawyers Group, which aims to: enable black lawyers to establish and maintain broader networks; to attract, retain and promote black talent; and to foster an inclusive culture supporting the long-term success of black lawyers.
He assisted in establishing Latham's unique 'mentoring families' programme, and the now biennial BLG global retreat. David is a Trustee and Treasurer of the BIGKID Foundation, mentoring and supporting young people in the UK who are at risk of social exclusion and violence.
In partnership with the International Lawyers for Africa, he acts as Latham's mentor and buddy for the ILFA's secondment programme. He also mentors students, particularly those from minority backgrounds, looking to pursue a career in law.
71) Edward Estrada, partner, Reed Smith
At Reed Smith, Edward has served as the senior management team sponsor of the Hispanic lawyers' affinity group, and as an ally for the firm's other affinity groups. He has been reverse mentored by leaders of the firm’s LGBT+ and mental health affinity groups, and sponsors the firm's women's initiatives and events.
He is a member of the Hispanic Lawyers' Society of New York, a mentor and financial sponsor for the Cornell University Office of Academic Diversity Initiatives, and an Advisory Board member of the Global Business Coalition for Education and YearUp, both organisations focused on access to education and the development of market-relevant skills.
Edward is committed to working with first generation college students, predominantly from low-income and ethnic minority communities, and sponsors and directly mentors students and young adults.
72) Jig Ramji, MD, group head of talent, London Stock Exchange Group
Jig recently joined the London Stock Exchange Group, where he leads the Group’s talent acquisition, performance, learning and leadership strategy and supports LSEG's diversity and inclusion agenda.
In his previous roles, Jig led the design and implementation of new leadership behaviours, including 'supporting a diverse and inclusive environment' as a critical component of leadership. He and his team also led the development of specific programmes in Asia to strengthen 'local senior talent' and senior leaders across companies were trained in inclusive leadership.
He is passionate about accelerating the growth of under-represented talent and as an executive coach, he has worked with diverse female leaders to support them in their senior C-suite roles. Jig is a trustee for the Roffey Park Institute, Board Member for the UK Chapter of the International Coaching Federation and Policy Forum Member of the CIPD, where he has advised on gender pay gap reporting and potential methodology for ethnicity pay gap reporting.
73) Dorothy Burwell, partner, Finsbury
Dorothy champions diversity day-to-day as a member of the Finsbury Roots committee and by serving on the steering committee for WPP Roots, a group-wide team that supports initiatives implemented across WPP agencies in the UK.
She has worked with Finsbury Roots since inception to develop D&I policies, particularly concerning maternity and paternity leave, flexible working, recruitment, and inclusion events and activities. Finsbury has also partnered with the Taylor Bennett Foundation, which encourages BAME graduates to pursue a career in communications, as part of its annual graduate recruitment process.
The combination of initiatives has led to gradual improvements in diversity across various levels of the business. Dorothy is President and Chair of Trustees for the London Chapter of The Links, Incorporated, where she sets the strategy as the organisation executes ground-level outreach programmes to support underrepresented groups in obtaining exposure and access to various career paths.
74) Shimna Sameer, head of national operations & northeast division, Bank of America
Shim Sameer is a dynamic leader and passionate advocate for diversity and inclusion. A native of India, she began her career in financial services in 2005 as a teller and now is Head of National Operations and the Northeast Division for Bank of America’s Consumer Banking & Investments.
She is passionate about advancing women’s careers and actively works to develop and mentor women leaders. She often speaks at forums, panels and events addressing global audiences about inclusion and empowerment of women.
She is the founder and the executive sponsor of the bank’s Women’s Forum and the executive sponsor for the company’s CB&I Employee Engagement & Inclusion Council. She is a recipient of the company’s distinguished Global Diversity & Inclusion Award and has been profiled on FairyGodBoss.com for her advocacy for women. She serves on the board of the Walker School in Needham, Massachusetts, and the Big Sisters Association of Boston.
75) Cindy Rampersaud, senior vice-president, BTEC & apprenticeships, Pearson
Cindy is executive co-sponsor at PRIME, Pearson's BAME ERG, and the executive lead for WILL in the company’s Manchester office, an ERG group supporting diversity and inclusion for women.
Since inception of PRIME in 2018, Pearson has signed the BITC Race at Work Charter, and the ERG has partnered with HR in a campaign to encourage employees to voluntarily disclose race and ethnicity information.
Cindy has been proactive in raising BAME visibility through her mentoring and sponsorship of talent, both within and outside Pearson. The BTEC & Apprenticeships business has recently partnered with Thinkfest to sponsor the Annual BAME Apprenticeship Awards.
Cindy is an Honorary Lifetime member of The Children's Society, working with children and young people, largely from ethnic minority communities, and a board member for The Speakers Trust, which works to build confidence and communication skills in children from across London, Essex and in other UK metropolitan areas.
76) Tanvi Gokhale, director, segmentation & propositions, Lloyds Banking Group
Since joining Lloyds Banking Group in 2008, Tanvi has passionately driven the inclusion agenda.
She is a key diversity sponsor for the Retail Bank, a member of LBG’s Inclusion and Diversity Forum and Inclusion Strategy working group, and a member and speaker for the BAME network, REACH. Tanvi is founder of the Chief Customer Office’s BAME committee, which has driven increases in colleague disclosure rates and advocate involvement.
She pioneered “Ask Me Anything” sessions to encourage BAME colleagues to share experiences and be more confident. Other initiatives she has led include a hiring and retention programme for BAME talent and a reverse mentoring programme.
Tanvi was invited to join the Deloitte Academy BAME on Boards Programme. She is a regular keynote and panel speaker at industry diversity events. Tanvi heads up the development and roll-out of LBG’s consumer propositions. Her career at LBG has spanned both strategy and commercial executive roles across multiple divisions.
77) Carey Mendes, group CFO chief of staff, BP
Carey is involved in a number of D&I initiatives and organisations across BP, providing leadership and advocacy for the diversity agenda. These include the Positively Ethnic Network (PEN) and the BP African American network among others. He has helped to organise events that highlighted the importance of Sponsorship for minorities and women, as well as a BP wide event on the Economics of Diversity. Carey is also involved in the community with organisations like Chicago United and Working in the Schools (WITS).
78) Sonia Sng, director, business operations, Intuit
At Intuit, Sonia is building on her lifelong advocacy of D&I initiatives. She previously co-chaired the Women's Network in her previous role at Visa.
She has served on the Steering Committee of Intuit's Women's Network, and has co-hosted intersectional International Women's Day activities. She was recently named to Enterprise Management 360’s “Top 10 Influential BAME Tech Leaders” list.
Currently, Sonia is on the board of directors of the Close the Gap Foundation (previously known as SPARC Initiative), a non-profit in San Francisco Bay Area, focused on empowering the next generation of young leaders — especially those from underprivileged and underrepresented backgrounds — to achieve their dreams through project-based learning and mentorship.
She mentors individuals from diverse backgrounds globally and shares her story via a blog.
79) Quentin Roach, senior vice-president, global supplier management, supply business development and workplace & enterprise services/chief procurement officer, MSD-Merck, Sharp & Dohme
Quentin is Executive Sponsor of MSD's Next Gen Network while also advocating for several company Employee Business Resource Groups - LEAD (African American), Hispanos Employee Network, Women's Network and Rainbow Alliance.
He is executive sponsor for company engagement with the Executive Leadership Council, where he sponsors talent development and advancement initiatives. He has been an Executive Champion and Board Member to several external organisations for Supplier Diversity and Economic Inclusion; including the NMSDC, USHCC and NBMBAA.
He is sponsor and executive liaison to: the National Cares Mentor Movement, which is working for economic equity for the most underserved and deserving children; The Franklin Institute, supporting STEM education for diverse communities; and the National Black College Alumni Hall of Fame, supporting minority student scholarships, among other organisations.
80) Ritu Mohanka-Vedhara, head of Business Development, EMEA, Glint (LinkedIn)
Ritu is a prominent ethnic minority female leader on the Senior Leadership Team at Glint, now part of LinkedIn, where she actively champions the business benefits of employing an effective Diversity strategy and has significantly influenced the corporate agenda on behalf of, and to the benefit of, all relevant employees.
Glint actively pursues a hiring strategy that is deliberately colour- and gender-blind and mirrors it in their approach to performance management.
Ritu takes great pride in mentoring upcoming and talented ethnic minority professionals both within and beyond Glint, advising on career development. In her previous role at IBM, Ritu was a highly regarded Diversity Champion, and served as executive sponsor to numerous Diversity groups.
She is a regular panellist and keynote speaker at Global and EMEA CXO Leadership and HR events, such as Digital HR in Dubai, championing diversity and inclusion to CXO’s across EMEA every working day.
81) Raj Roy, general counsel, UK & Ireland, Centrica
Raj sponsors Centrica's (CNA.L) Ethnicity Network and is a member of Spectrum, the LGBT+ network, DAWN, the disability and wellbeing network, and CWN, the women's network.
He led discussions with employees from ethnic and non-ethnic backgrounds, consulting on how to improve D&I at Centrica. He created a working group to help drive the initial discovery work and identified issues attached to disclosing ethnicity information.
The learnings from these initiatives informed key priorities and the launch of Centrica's Ethnicity Network.
He has been invited to speak at a London law firm as part of their ethnicity network launch, and joined a roundtable as part of the Pinsent Masons D&I Report launch. Raj is an active mentor with the 30% Club, and has created a high level of senior leadership accountability for the D&I agenda in both the legal and consumer parts of Centrica.
82) Sarah Nelson, head of finance, Sainsbury's
At Sainsbury's, Sarah has accelerated the momentum of the ethnicity network over the last two years by engaging and educating senior leadership, increasing visible allies at operating board-level, and her work has led to a 300% increase in network membership.
She mentors BAME individuals and advises the business on BAME issues to proactively influence the BAME strategy. Following the acquisition of Argos, Sarah has supported the integration of two BAME networks and has launched and participated in numerous initiatives to increase BAME visibility.
As one of the most senior black colleagues within the business and a visible female role model, Sarah speaks at external events on D&I issues, and is also an adviser to other BAME networks within the retail industry.
83) Chiaki Nishino, president, North America, Prophet
Chiaki heads up the Women in Leadership Diversity Initiative as an Executive Committee member and global sponsor.
She is currently looking to expand this effort beyond gender diversity to more general diversity, including ethnic minority. The group is initiating an external engagement effort this year to contribute to the wider dialogue.
Chiaki is a board member at MAKERS, committing to pledges on how to drive diversity within Prophet. She also engages in conversations with women through her Harvard and Wharton alumni network.
84) Maz Ahmed, finance director, WM Morrison Supermarkets
Maz has been instrumental in championing the BAME agenda at Morrisons. Maz sponsors the BAME steering group which now has clear priorities and actions to improve BAME representation in the business. Maz is a visible role model for business success, having been promoted to the Leadership team at Morrisons at the age of 37.
He is using his role in the Leadership team to understand and address barriers to progression for BAME colleagues, including unconscious bias in all areas of the business. He is involved in mentoring BAME talent across the company.
Maz has recently moved from his previous finance roles into an operational role, leading diverse teams across Morrisons' manufacturing sites. Maz is also involved in networking with local organisations to share best practice on BAME diversity.
85) Nisreen Hasib, chief operating officer, Unbound
For Nisreen, and for Unbound, diversity and inclusion are core elements of business culture.
When hiring, the company seeks a diverse array of candidates, knowing that much of the company's strength comes from having a team from different socioeconomic and racial backgrounds, gender identities, and educational experiences.
Nisreen is on the Advisory Council of Women in Innovation (WIN), where she mentors WIN members, connects the organisation with necessary resources, and participates as a speaker at WIN events. She is also a mentor and speaker for Communitas America (CA), which supports diverse entrepreneurs in the Bronx.
86) April Crichlow, head, global customer and ecosystem marketing, SAP Ariba and SAP Fieldglass
April leads Diversity and Inclusion for SAP Ariba and SAP Fieldglass and is instrumental in aligning business goals with HR goals.
Through a variety of diversity programmes, she has set targets for diversity representation with the organisation, to be reached by 2022. She is an active member of SAP Global Diversity & Inclusion Council, the SAP North America Diversity & Inclusion Council, the SAP Business Women's Network, and is a mentor with SAP.io Women's Foundry.
She has worked to promote Supplier Risk and Supplier Diversity solutions that help SAP Ariba buyer and supplier customers support ethnic owned and women owned businesses. Externally, she serves on the board of Give Clear, supporting D&I initiatives, has mentored for Girls Who Code and Kode with Klossy, and is a member of and adviser to HeyMama which supports women in the workplace.
April is regularly asked to speak on gender and ethnic pay parity, and often appears in the media discussing the importance of diversity and inclusion.
87) Jaya Handa, privacy director, Liberty Specialty Markets
Jaya chairs the Cultural Awareness Matters network at Liberty Specialty Markets. This network promotes cultural, linguistic, ethnicity and social mobility diversity and inclusion initiatives to support the existing staff population and broaden the talent pipeline.
The network engages with other market peers and sponsors the Insurance Cultural Awareness Network (iCan) to assist in the promotion of multicultural inclusion and progression in the insurance sector, through mentoring and networking opportunities.
Jaya also set up and sits on the committee of the Junior Lawyers Group of the Black Solicitors Network, a not-for profit company promoting race equality and influencing D&I best practice in relation to matters which affect ethnic minority solicitors. She also acted as the Outreach Officer for the Next Generation Insurance Network, and continues to mentor minority students, graduates and professionals extensively.
88) Keia Clarke, chief operating officer, New York Liberty
Keia Clarke is entering her third season as COO of the New York Liberty, where she oversees the business and P&L, including strategic planning, budgeting and day-to-day team business operations. Additionally, Keia works with stakeholders on key elements of team business, including growing the fan base, maximising sales and fan engagement, and improving business performance.
Under Keia's leadership, the Liberty put a spotlight on the mass incarceration of women, specifically women of colour, and has made an appearance on CNN to raise awareness for the issue. Clarke has also created an initiative to connect New York Liberty players with alumnae of YWCA Brooklyn's Young Women's Lead College Access Programme.
Following a practice during the 2019 season, the two organisations teamed up to provide the young leaders with the unique opportunity to be interviewed by New York Liberty players about their journey to college and overall goals to create change.
89) Rachael Palmer, head of VC and startup partnerships, EMEA, Google
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.
90) Kathy Quashie, head of partnerships and alliances, Vodafone
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 programmes promoting, encouraging and recognising both BAME and Women networks across the UK
91) Loreal Torres, chief people officer, Vested
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.
92) Hina Nagarajan, managing director, Africa emerging markets, Diageo
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 prioritising 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.
93) Cecil Adjalo, UK managing partner, Hiberus
Cecil is the UK managing partner at Hiberus and director at Foundervine. He is a passionate advocate for publicising 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 organise and run four weekend entrepreneurial programmes to upskill BAME entrepreneurs among other initiatives in schools and universities.
94) Debbie Ellison, chief digital officer, Geometry Global
Debbie sits on Geometry UK executive committee, 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.
95) Kashif Zafar, head of global markets division, Americas, Credit Agricole Corp & Investment Bank
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.
96) Sumati Sharma, VP product & commercial, Virgin Holidays, part of Virgin Atlantic
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 organisations 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.
97) Fenil Khiroya, UK head of HR, Standard Chartered Bank
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.
98) Leilani Brown, senior vice-president of strategic partnerships and external engagement, K12
Leilani M Brown is senior vice-president of Strategic Partnerships and External Engagement for 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 organisation for global black executives. She is also a graduate of New York University.
99) Tapaswee Chandele, global head of talent & development, The Coca-Cola Company
Tapaswee currently leads Talent & Development for The Coca-Cola Company (KO). In this role, she is responsible for recruiting, talent management, leadership development, learning and organisation effectiveness strategy. In her career of over eighteen years with the company, Tapaswee has been a passionate advocate of the women in leadership agenda.
She set up the first diversity council in India, creating policies and programmes for an inclusive and enabling environment, and building the first ever diversity awareness workshop for all employees in the business.
She co-created the Eurasia Africa Women's Council, and drove the women in leadership agenda across the group. As Global Head of Talent & Development, Tapaswee provides leadership to the team which helps to hire diverse talent across senior roles, and she helps to develop key leadership development programmes for women in leadership and multicultural talent. She is currently an advisor to The Coca-Cola Company's Global Women's Leadership Council.
100) Christopher Kenna, CEO, Brand Advance
Christopher Kenna is CEO and founder of Brand Advance, a company which connects brands with diverse audiences globally, through insights, media and creative that more authentically engages these communities.
Chris is also the director of Diversity and Inclusion at OUTvertising, the Advertising industry Lobbying Group and as a mixed race, out gay father. He is a strong advocate for diversity and representation within the media and advertising industry. Chris also sits on the advisory board for the V&A Museum.
Chris is an award winning entrepreneur, having recently received the Innovator of the Year Award at the second annual Ex-Forces in Business Awards and was shortlisted for Chief Executive of the Year at the Inclusive Companies Awards.