Diversity as a Catalyst for Innovation
LGBT+@Work is an annual conference that aims to promote the free exchange of ideas and provide a unique networking platform for LGBT+ students, LGBT+ professionals, and our allies. Now in its 14th year, LGBT+@Work is hosted by the IE Out and Allies Club, IE University's student-led LGBT+ organization.
It is our mission this year to dive past surface-level definitions of "diversity" and explore its more multifaceted layers -- even within our own community. We will challenge speakers and guests to not only learn more about marginalized populations, but to ingest new perspectives, apply them to their own lives, and find innovative ways to integrate new ideas into their companies' programs of inclusion.
JULY 1 & 2
Phyll Opoku-Gyimah, widely known as Lady Phyll, is the executive director and co-founder of UK Black Pride - Europe's largest celebration for LGBTQ+ people of African, Asian, Caribbean, Latin American and Middle Eastern descent. Lady Phyll has over 20 years’ experience as an LGBTQ+ rights activist and anti-racism campaigner.
She has spent a decade advocating for the rights of workers within the largest civil service union as a lead negotiator on behalf of Civil Service workers and is now the Executive Director of Kaleidoscope Trust an LGBT+ charity that works to defend and uphold human rights. She is also a patron for Albert Kennedy Trust; Diva Magazine columnist, and public speaker focusing on race, gender, sexuality and class. She is named as one of the top 5 on the World Pride Power list.
EVP, Employee Success
Linda Aiello is Executive Vice President, Employee Success at Salesforce. In her role, Linda leads the global business partner organisation in driving all parts of the employee lifecycle for the Salesforce Ohana. Since joining Salesforce in 2016, Linda has placed a focus on creating a strong and engaged culture at Salesforce that has led to recognition as a Great Place to Work in global markets including the UK, Germany, Canada and Japan.
Prior to joining Salesforce, Linda led human resources and recruiting in EMEA and APAC for Uber. With nearly 20 years experience, she has also managed human resources and development at leading fashion brands including Louis Vuitton, Jimmy Choo and Bruno Magli.
ARI VERA MORALES
Ari Vera Morales (she/her) is a trans woman, originally from the port of Veracruz. She began her professional walk by pursuing a degree in Special Education focusing on learning problems at the Escuela Normal Veracruzana Enrique C. Rebsamen, thus facing her first obstacle, since she was not allowed to continue. Without giving up, she obtained a degree in Marketing at the Universidad de Insurgentes in Mexico City, and later a master's degree in the Defence and Promotion of Human Rights at the Universidad Autónoma de la Ciudad de México (UACM).
Her interest in working with vulnerable populations was born out of some personal and close experiences, thus giving rise to the association Almas Cautivas, which works in favour of people within the LGBTI community deprived of their liberty in Mexico City's prisons: the organisation has received the Mirabal Sisters 2014, LoveAwards 2019 and Alebrijes 2019 prizes.
She is also the founder of the international network Corpora en Libertad, a group of LGBT organizations around the world dedicated to the protection and defense of LGBT people in prison.
She is a member of the Consultative Assembly of the Council for the Prevention and Elimination of Discrimination in Mexico City (COPRED), and she is currently the Director of Institutional Relations of the Mexican Federation of LGBT Entrepreneurs, which specializes in creating work spaces free of discrimination.
She believes that this is her definining thought: "Even in the darkest places like prisons, dignity, respect and love must always be guaranteed."
Intrapreneur & General Manager, Ruum
Stefan Ritter, Intrapreneur & General Manager, Ruum by SAP
Former artist turned enterprise software intrapreneur. Stefan and his co-founder secured €12m to launch a new product division for SAP in the high growth process automation market. He leads a fast-growing team across three continents and across design, data science, and engineering.
Before joining SAP, Stefan was an analytics consultant at The New York Times in Paris under the Google Digital News Initiative Fund, and taught design at the University College London after having led the design of the Zeitz Museum for Contemporary African Art at Heatherwick Studio. He was born in Austria and, besides Germany, he lived and worked in China, the USA, Japan, Belgium, and the UK.
Founder & CEO
Jay Lin is the founder and CEO of Portico Media, a dynamic hub for content development, production and distribution, representing international media outlets such as NBCU Comcast, Viacom, A+E and Blue Ant Media.
He is also a prominent figure in Taiwan’s LGBTQ+ movement and the co-founder of the Taiwan International Queer Film Festival. In 2017, he launched GagaOOLala, Asia’s first LGBTQ+ streaming service, currently available worldwide. GagaOOLala is one of the founding members of the Marriage Equality Coalition Taiwan, the main lobby pushing for the same-sex marriage in the island, and finally succeeding in May 2019, when Taiwan became the first country in Asia to allow same-sex partners to marry.
In 2019, he was selected as part of ‘The Creative Class of 2019’ by Newsweek magazine.
Vice President of Student Affairs
Dr. Kyle A. Reyes currently serves as Vice President of Student Affairs at Utah Valley University (UVU)—the largest university in the state of Utah with over 41,000 students. From 2014-2017, Dr. Reyes served as UVU’s Senior Diversity Officer and led the development and implementation of UVU’s nationally-recognized Strategic Inclusion and Diversity Plan consisting of nearly 40 initiatives focused on making UVU a more inclusive campus. He has been at UVU for 16 years in various offices and programs: TRIO Upward Bound, GEAR UP, Multicultural Student Services, Student Success & Retention, the School of Education, and the Office of the President.
Dr. Reyes is also a tenured Associate Professor of Education at UVU and taught courses in Multicultural Education, Family & Community Partnerships, and Arts-based Integration. His research focuses on arts-based student empowerment; leadership for equity and access; and institution-wide inclusion and diversity strategic planning.
Kyle has consulted with, and presented to, organizations in 27 states* and Canada in various sectors including: K-12 education, higher education, business, community task forces, and faith groups. He has given more than 500 presentations over the past 16 years on issues of diversity, inclusion, art, cultural competence, voice, identity, multiculturalism, and leadership.
Kyle is the Vice President of the national organization of Asian Pacific Americans in Higher Education and serves on the Utah Governor’s Multicultural Commission. He is the past president of the Utah chapter of the National Association for Multicultural Education. Dr. Reyes has also served as the co-chair of the College Access Network for the Utah System of Higher Education and a member of the board of directors for the United Way of Utah County and American Indian Services.
Dr. Reyes has received a number of awards including: UVU’s Board of Trustees Award; the Exemplary Educator for Diversity Award from the National Association of Multicultural Education (NAME); Inclusion Cultivates Excellence Award from CUPA-HR, Utah Valley Magazine’s Top 40 Under 40; and the top 50 Diversity Executives in the Nation from Diversity MBA Magazine.
Kyle received his Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy from the University of Utah and was the recipient of the Bennion Morgan Fellowship.
Quality Director Major Projects
Amanda McKay is the Quality Director for the Major Projects business within Balfour Beatty, her main area of work is Nuclear and highly regulated projects. Amanda has worked in the Construction and major projects sector for over 35 years, mainly with QHSE roles and corporate governance. She has experience in Nuclear, rail, renewables and oil and Gas.
Amanda is an out Trans Woman and a strong advocate for diversity and inclusion within the Construction sector, regularly speaking on the topic, she also works to promote young people in STEM careers and is a mentor to a number of young people within the a number of sectors. She is a Fairness Inclusion & Respect ambassador and an OUTstanding top 100 LGBT Executive list member for the last two years. Amanda is a Chair of the Balfour Beatty LGBT+ and Allies network and the Gender Equality Network.
Chief Business Development Officer
Suresh Raj is Chief Business Development Officer at Vision7 International, part of BlueFocus International - a global marketing communications group. A seasoned marcomms professional, Suresh has been leading business development & growth in this sector for over 20+ years.
Prior to joining Vision7, Suresh was Worldwide Chief Business Development Officer for Ogilvy Group. With extensive experience across NA, EMEA, LATAM and APAC, Suresh drives pipeline growth and builds integrated agency teams across strategy, insight, data and creativity to solve clients' brand challenges.
In addition, Suresh is an equality, diversity and inclusion champion. For four years running (2016–2019), he has been featured on two prominent Financial Times / Yahoo! Finance Lists - the Top 100 Ethnic Minorities Executives and the Top 100 LGBTQ Executive Leaders. Suresh is an inaugural member of The Alliance, a working group of senior C-Suite LGBTQ+ leaders from around the world, brought together by McKinsey to address equality issues affecting key sectors and geographies. In 2019, he chaired a conversation on Humanity & Equality, at the Global TED Conference in Vancouver.
MALAYSIA / UK
Customer Success Leader Microsoft France
Ronette Lawrence is the Customer Success Leader for Microsoft France and serves as a member of Microsoft France Leadership Team. Ronette is a newcomer to Europe, having moved in September with her wife and two young children from Seattle, USA to Paris, France. Ronette’s team are the champions of customer success by ensuring they can do amazing things using Microsoft cloud services like Teams, Office, Dynamics and Azure. The team also learns from customers and drives feedback into engineering teams to ensure Microsoft products are built in ways that our customers can truly take advantage of them and achieve more of their own ambitions.
Before their move, Ronette spent 14 years with Microsoft in Seattle in marketing, research, and engineering roles. Most recently, she led Product Planning & User Research for Microsoft Office engineering: a team focused on modernizing the suite of productivity solutions for the way work is evolving. Through observing how people around the world live and work—using ethnographic, quantitative and correlation techniques—Ronette’s team sought to understand the ways in which people create, how they collaborate, and how the use of increasingly-intelligent technology makes them feel. Her team’s insights influence how Microsoft infuses its productivity tools with artificial intelligence and guides how the company is evolving products to empower future generations.
The prediction she feels most comfortable making? The more difference that exists on a team, the more amazing the product they can create
Welcome | IE Out & Allies Club
Santiago Iñiguez | President of IE University
Phyll Opoku-Gyimah | Executive Director/Founder Black UK Pride
Linda Aiello | EVP, Employee Success at Salesforce
Amanda McKay | Quality Director for the Major Projects Balfour Beatty
Stefan Ritter | Intrapreneur & General Manager, Ruum by SAP
Suresh Raj | Chief Business Development Officer at Vision7
Sponsorship Panel | Salesforce, Johnson & Johnson, Gilead, and Amazon
Ari Vera Morales | Founder & President of Almas Cautivas
Welcome | IE Out & Allies Club
LGBT+@Work Lifetime Achievement Award | Marta Fernandez
Jay Lin | Founder and CEO of Portico Media
Ronette Lawrence | Customer Success Lead at Microsoft France
Kyle Reyes | Vice President of Student Affairs at Utah Valley University
THEY MADE IT HAPPEN