Speaker Bios

Melissa V. Abad, PhD is a research sociologist at the Stanford VMWare Women’s Leadership Innovation Lab and leads the intersectional leadership research agenda. Her research examines the occupational trajectories of women of color in Corporate America and the resources that help their leadership development. She is also a member of the research and teaching team of Seeds of Change, a leadership initiative that trains and supports young women in STEM as they transition through high school and college to successful technology careers. Dr. Abad’s scholarly research lies at the intersection of organizational sociology and intersectionality. Current projects include identifying the strategies women of color employ to advance their careers, examining the barriers young women in STEM face, and assessing the strengths and weaknesses of diversity programming. She’s given talks and workshops on intersectionality, diversity management, Asian leadership, Latina Leadership, and employee resource group membership


Henry McKoy is a seasoned professional in business, community and economic development, policy, government, finance, philanthropy and the academic worlds. He is a faculty member and Director of Entrepreneurship at NC Central University. He served from 2010-2012 in the North Carolina Department of Commerce where he was appointed by the Governor as Assistant Secretary. At Commerce he was the top Community Development official in NC government. His Division oversaw over half-billion dollars in investments across hundreds of projects throughout NC in areas of Infrastructure, Housing, and Business.


William A. (“Sandy”) Darity, Jr. is the Samuel DuBois Cook Professor of Public Policy, African and African American Studies, and Economics at Duke University. He is the founding director of the Samuel DuBois Cook Center on Social Equity, and he has served as chair of Duke’s Department of African and African American Studies. Darity’s research focuses on inequality by race, class and ethnicity, stratification economics, schooling and the racial achievement gap, labor market outcomes, and the economics of reparations. In 2017, he was named to the Politico 50 list of the most influential policy thinkers He holds a Ph.D. in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and has published or edited 13 books and more than 250 articles in professional journals.


Steve Schewel came to Durham to attend Duke as an undergraduate in 1969. He is a former school board member and city council member, and he now serves as Mayor of the City of Durham. His commitments are to issues of affordable housing, civil rights, policing and crime, shared prosperity, and the preservation of open space, trails and parks. Steve co-founded the Independent Weekly and published it for nearly 30 years. Since 2000, he has taught in the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke. Steve and Lao Rubert have raised two sons, both graduates of Durham Public Schools. Steve is a long-time youth soccer coach, a reader and runner, and he fancies himself a pretty good cook.


Michael S. Barr is the Joan and Sanford Weill Dean of the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, the Frank Murphy Collegiate Professor of Public Policy, the Roy F. and Jean Humphrey Proffitt Professor of Law at the University of Michigan Law School, and the founder and Faculty Director of the University of Michigan’s Center on Finance, Law, and Policy. He is also a nonresident senior fellow at the Center for American Progress. At the Law School, Barr taught Financial Regulation and International Finance, and co-founded the International Transactions Clinic and the Detroit Neighborhood Entrepreneurs Project.

Professor Barr conducts research and writes about a wide range of issues in domestic and international financial regulation. His books include Financial Regulation: Law & Policy (Foundation Press 2016, 2d Ed. 2018, with Howell Jackson and Margaret Tahyar), No Slack: The Financial Lives of Low-Income Americans (Brookings Press, 2012), Insufficient Funds (Russell Sage, 2009, co-edited with Rebecca Blank), and Building Inclusive Financial Systems(Brookings Press, 2007, co-edited with Anjali Kumar and Robert Litan).

Professor Barr was on leave during 2009 and 2010, serving in President Barack H. Obama’s Administration as the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s assistant secretary for financial institutions, and was a key architect of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. Prior to his Senate confirmation, Barr served on the National Economic Council in the White House. Professor Barr previously served in the Administration of William J. Clinton as Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin’s special assistant, as deputy assistant secretary of the Treasury, as special adviser to President William J. Clinton, and as a special adviser and counselor on the policy planning staff at the U.S. Department of State.

Barr served as a law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice David H. Souter during October Term 1993, and previously to the Hon. Pierre N. Leval, then of the Southern District of New York.

He received his JD from Yale Law School, his MPhil in international relations as a Rhodes Scholar from Magdalen College, Oxford University, and his BA, summa cum laude, with honors in history, from Yale University.


Dr. David A. Thomas has assumed office as the 12th President of Morehouse College, ushering in a new era of leadership for Morehouse, the nation’s largest and most prestigious liberal arts college for men.

President Thomas has 30 years of higher education experience. He holds a Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior Studies and a Master of Philosophy in Organizational Behavior degree, both from Yale University. He also has a Master of Organizational Psychology degree from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Administrative Sciences degree from Yale College. President Thomas is the former H. Naylor Fitzhugh Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School and the former Dean of Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business.

Prior to Georgetown, Thomas served as a professor and administrator at Harvard University for two decades. He returned in 2017 as the H. Naylor Fitzhugh Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School. He is also a former assistant professor at the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.  He is the recipient of Washington Business Journal’s 2014 “Minority Business Leader of the Year” award and the National Executive Forum’s “Breaking Through: 2020, Beacon Award,” among other honors. Over the past 30 years, he has also worked as a consultant on issues relating to organizational change, and diversity and inclusion for 100 of the Fortune 500 companies as well as major governmental and nonprofit organizations.

Thomas is nationally renowned for his research in managing diversity in the workplace. He has written numerous case studies and academic articles on the subject. He also is the co-author of two related books: “Breaking Through: The Making of Minority Executives in Corporate America,” which is one of the first in-depth studies to focus on minorities who have made it to the top, and “Leading for Equity: The Pursuit of Excellence in Montgomery


Dr. Clinton Boyd, Jr. is a Postdoctoral Associate in the Samuel DuBois Cook Center on Social Equity. His areas of interest include race and ethnicity, social inequality, urban sociology, family policy, and parenting and African American families. Dr. Boyd primarily studies how the life course events of African American men affect their experiences as fathers. Dr. Boyd’s research also explores ways to strengthen father involvement in evidence-based home visiting programs. The National Institute of Health, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago, and early childhood non-profit organization, ZERO TO THREE, have supported his research in these areas.


Co-owner and Producer, Wendy Eley Jackson is a graduate of University of California at Berkeley where she received her B.A. in English Literature. Got her first taste of showbiz when working at Culver Studios for TriStar Television in Movies and Mini-series. Her career later brought her back home to Atlanta, Georgia where she worked for Turner Broadcasting System in Promotions Production. Currently Wendy is CEO for Auburn Avenue Films based in Atlanta, GA where she serves as CEO and Chairman. Auburn Avenue Films is a production company specializing in entertainment that brings social awareness and engages audiences to participate in positive social change.

Wendy received her MFA in screenwriting from University of Georgia.


Maynard Jackson III is the only son of the Honorable Mayor Maynard Holbrook Jackson Jr. This Atlanta native is a musician at heart. A brilliant drummer who’s first set of drums were given to him by his step-father, Ray Ransom, Bass player of the 1980’s hit R&B group, Brick, Maynard found his love for music early! Formal instruction through the prestigious Musician’s Institute in Los Angeles, CA., Maynard has always found drumming to be the longest love of his life. In 2015, Maynard III, re-ignited a not-for-profit organization called the American Voters League which was originally started by his father, Mayor Maynard Jackson Jr in 2002. Having worked alongside of his father, Maynard III, is actively involved is pubic speaking and working within his community encouraging citizens to vote as their civic duty.

In 2015, Maynard and his wife, Wendy Eley Jackson, started Auburn Avenue Films, a production company based in Atlanta, GA.


Sam Pollard’s professional accomplishments as a feature film and television video editor, and documentary producer/director span almost thirty years.  He recently served as Executive Producer on the documentary Brother Outsider, Official Selection 2003 Sundance Film Festival.  His first assignment as a documentary producer came in 1989 for Henry Hampton’s Blackside production Eyes On The Prize II: America at the Racial Crosswords.  For one of his episodes in this series, he received an Emmy.  Eight years later, he returned to Blackside as Co-Executive Producer/Producer of Hampton’s last documentary series I’ll Make Me A World: Stories of African-American Artists and Community.  For the series, Mr. Pollard received The George Peabody Award.  Between 1990 and 2000, Mr. Pollard edited a number of Spike Lee’s films:  Mo’ Better Blues, Jungle Fever, Girl 6, Clockers, Bamboozled.  As well, Mr. Pollard and Mr. Lee co-produced a couple of documentary productions for the small and big screen:  Spike Lee Presents Mike Tyson, a biographical sketch for HBO for which Mr. Pollard received an Emmy, and Four Little Girls, a feature-length documentary about the 1965 Birmingham church bombings which was nominated for an Academy Award.

In between films, he edited for the highly acclaimed children’s programs NBC’s Vegetable Soup and The Children’s Television Workshop’s 3-2-1-Contact for which he received two Emmys.  In the early 1990s, there was Fires In The Mirror, a performance art film directed by George Wolfe, starring Anna Deveare Smith.  In 1993, he produced for The American Experience a documentary called, Goin’ Back to T-Town, about life in a black community in Tulsa, Oklahoma during legal segregation.


Bunnie Jackson-Ransom is the President and CEO of firstClass, Inc. – a full-service public relations and marketing firm founded in 1975. She has been the driving force behind firstClass for the past 39 years–conceptualizing the company, working with clients and implementing its programs. Ms. Jackson-Ransom has a diverse business background, extensive administrative experience and organizational know-how, and a dedicated commitment to community involvement. Educated in the public schools of North Carolina, she received a Bachelor of Science in Business from North Carolina College and a Master of Science in Business from North Carolina Central University. Graduating magna-cum-laude, she worked her way through college; and it is that same attitude that has propelled her and firstClass into prominence.

The professional and volunteer service career of Bunnie Jackson-Ransom spans some forty-five years. During this period, she has effectively been a college professor at Bennett College (Greensboro, N C) and at Georgia State University in Atlanta, a governmental agency official at Economic Opportunity Atlanta, a business owner and mentor to many young women who aimed to follow in her footsteps.


Elvia Meléndez-Ackerman is a full professor at the University of Puerto Rico Rio Piedras in the College of Natural Sciences.  She is an experienced researcher, an ecologist by training but an interdisciplinary researcher by experience. She has a broad background in evolutionary-ecology, conservation, ecological responses to climate variability.  Recently, her research has expanded to address sustainability and adaptive capacity issues within the context of urban social-ecological systems, how feedbacks between social and ecological factors influence human wellbeing.  In that capacity, she works on collaborative teams implementing survey research that combines social and ecological data collection.  She is the PI or co-PI of funded grants from various state and federal agencies, including Department of Natural Resources), NSF, USDA, USFW and NGOs (Ford, Ciudadanos del Karso).  Professor Meléndez-Ackerman is Co-PI on several collaborative proposals including the NSF-funded project leading to the creation of the San Juan ULTRA (Urban Long-Term Research Areas). This experience involved the collaboration of highly interdisciplinary teams (planning, public health, ecology, sociology, architecture) across multiple institutions (academic and non- academic). Professor Meléndez-Ackerman holds a Ph.D.in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of California Irvine.


Laura Cummings is a Director at the Financial Health Network (formerly Center for Financial Services Innovation) where she leads the Small Business Working Group and research into the financial health needs of small business owners. Previously Laura worked with large financial service providers on regulatory compliance and litigation concerns arising from the financial crisis.


Elizabeth Dwyer is a Manager on the Program Team at the Financial Health Network (formerly Center for Financial Services Innovation). The Financial Health Network is a trusted resource for business leaders, policymakers and innovators united in a mission to improve the financial health of their customers, employees and communities. Through groundbreaking research, advisory services, measurement tools, and opportunities for cross-sector collaboration, the Network advances awareness, understanding, and proven best practices in support of improved consumer financial health for all.


Karla Henriquez is a Senior Associate on the Program Team at the Financial Health Network. Karla works with organizations to deliver services and products that promote financially healthy lives. Karla brings her background in community engagement, small business development, and asset building in immigrant communities to her work at the Financial Health Network.

Before joining the Financial Health Network, Karla worked at Mission Asset Fund, a non-profit organization in San Francisco, CA formalizing Lending Circles as a credit-building tool for immigrant and other underserved communities. Karla also managed the Ventanilla Financiera, a partnership with the San Francisco Mexican Consulate, to deliver financial coaching and programming to Mexican nationals visiting the consulate.


M’Balou Camara is a 3rd year PhD Student in public policy with a concentration in economics at Duke. She is committed to studying and documenting the ways that we can use policies to narrow the gap between the world as it is and the world as we envision it to be. M’Balou’s research focuses on how differential pathways into entrepreneurship are implicated on the racial gap in intergenerational wealth, and how the path dependent nature of historical legacies shape contemporary business and wealth-building opportunities across different geographical locations. Moreover, she studies how various “equalizing” labor market policies reinforce differential outcomes between those who are privileged and those who are systematically disadvantaged.  Through her PhD journey and beyond, M’Balou hopes to inform social and welfare policy-relevant research as it pertains to people of the African diaspora.


Dr. Ashleigh Shelby Rosette is an Associate Professor of Management and Organizations and a Center of Leadership and Ethics scholar at the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University. She is also a Fellow at the Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity and Gender in the Social Sciences and a member of the Duke Corporate Education Global Learning Resource Network.

Dr. Rosette studies diversity and negotiations in organizational settings. In her primary area of research, she explores social and contextual factors that influence diversity-related perceptions. The three streams of her diversity research include: (1) recognition and inference-based processes of leadership, (2) leader behavior and role congruence, and (3) perceptions of social inequity. In her secondary area of research, negotiations, she examines various strategies that individuals employ to improve the negotiation process and negotiated outcome. Her research has been published or is forthcoming in academic journals and books, such as Academy of Management Journal; Organization Science; Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes; Journal of Applied Psychology; Psychological Science; Journal of Experimental Social Psychology; Journal of Cross Cultural Psychology; Research on Managing Groups and Teams; Group Decision & Negotiation and the Duke Journal of Gender and Public Policy.

Her research has been recognized with awards presented by the Academy of Management, State Farm, Kellogg Teams and Groups Center, the Ford Foundation, the International Association of Conflict Management and the Dispute Resolution Research Center. Dr. Rosette has conducted and presented her research in the United States, France, Spain, Portugal, Hong Kong, South Africa, The Netherlands, Austria, and Canada. Her research has been featured in media outlets such as Forbes, the Wall Street Journal, Time Magazine, Business Week, the Financial Times, USAToday, the Chicago Tribune, Huffington Post and National Public Radio. Recently, she was ranked as one of the Forty Best Business School Professors under Forty by Poets & Quants and

She received her Bachelor in Business Administration degree and Master in Professional Accounting degree from the University of Texas at Austin. She received her Ph.D. in Management and Organizations from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Prior to entering academia, she worked for Arthur Andersen LLP as a Certified Public Accountant.


David Carrasquillo

David lives in the city of San Juan, capital of Puerto Rico. He currently works as Manager for Planning and Community Development for Hispanic Federation (501(c)(3) on their Puerto Rico Operations where he manages programs and programs on topics like housing, economic development, water, energy, risk mitigation and civic participation.  Prior to HF, David used to work as a City Planner for the Planning and Land Use Office of the Municipality of San Juan. He coordinated the development and implementation of the city’s Land Use Plan, as well as the Multi-Risk Mitigation Plan. David’s work in San Juan as a planner involves different components as community outreach, spatial analysis, public policy evaluation and development of decision support tools in a broad scale of issues as land use, zoning, transportation, environment, permits, social justice, economic development, blight, and climate change. Also, David has worked as an adviser to Fundación Comunitaria de Puerto Rico, the oldest community-driven philanthropy Foundation (Non-Profit Organization) in Puerto Rico, on planning and community affairs. After María their efforts are concentrated on housing rehabilitation and development for affected families, low-income populations and marginalized peoples. Also, David works have had experience as a private contractor as a planner and cartographer (GIS Analyst) developing mostly Land Use Plans, Rehabilitation Plans, Urban Inventories and Spatial Analysis for the private and public sectors. His main research topic since his Planning Master’s years at the Graduate School of Planning of the University of Puerto Rico has been Urban Centers, Renewal, Housing and Development.

Since November 2016, David has been the President and spokesperson for the Puerto Rican Planning Society (Sociedad Puertorriqueña de Planificación). This organization not only has been working at tasks involving the development of professional planners on the island but also has assumed a coordination role of assisting communities through planning techniques and network development in the recovery of Puerto Rico after hurricane María. For the past decade, David has also been deeply involved in different projects, including the following: Sociedad Sinergia – a decolonial interepistemical approach of inter generational dialogue with specific interests in topics about racism, discrimination, history and identity in a global scale; Movimiento Unión Soberanista: a political education organization fighting for Puerto Rico’s sovereignty and decolonization; The Citizen’s Commission for the Integral Audit of the Debt: which has been promoting research and in-depth analysis towards the full audit of Puerto Rico’s debt;  and has also been a known activist on urban issues, especially abandoned spaces, zoning issues and occupations on urban contexts.


Senator Floyd B. McKissick Jr. has served in the North Carolina State Senate since 2007. He represents Senate District 20 which includes Durham and Granville Counties. Currently serving as the Senior Deputy Democratic Leader in Senate an previously as Chairman of the North Carolina Legislative Black Caucus from 2010 to 2012; and Chairman of Durham County’s Democratic Party from 2005 to 2007. From 1993-2001, Senator McKissick served Durham as a member of City Council, and as a former Member of Durham’s Board of Adjustment and of Durham’s Joint City-County Planning Commission. He has also served on numerous boards and commissions.

Since 1990, Senator McKissick has been an attorney at McKissick and McKissick in Durham, NC, where he specializes in civil litigation among other areas of practice. Senator McKissick also serves as an Adjunct Professor at the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University. Previously, he was an Associate with Dickstein, Shapiro and Morin in Washington, DC; and an Associate with Faison, Brown, Fletcher and Brough in the Durham, NC. He previously served as a Management Consultant with the Washington DC Office of Peat, Marwick, and Mitchell, where he co-authored numerous studies and reports, including a book on Attracting Foreign Direct Investment to the United States.  He is also an author of several published articles.

Senator McKissick received his JD from Duke University’s School of Law and his Master’s in Public Administration (MPA) from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, where he specialized in the Management of State and Local Government and Diplomacy. He also earned a Master’s in Regional Planning (MRP) from the School of City and Regional Planning at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, where he specialized in Land Use Planning and Financial Management, and an AB in Geography from Clark University in Worcester, MA. Prior to attending law school.


B. Kojo Ako-Asare
Senior Director
Investing Emerson Collective

Kojo j oined Emerson Collective i n 2017, after l eading Boosted, Inc. (an SF based transportation start-up) as Chief Financial Officer. At Emerson, Kojo focuses on wealth creation for disadvantaged communities through the organization’s i nvestments i n real estate and mobility. His current projects i nclude a l arge scale community-centered real estate development i n the San Mateo County area.

Previously, Kojo was the Head of Corporate Finance for Google (now Alphabet), where he built an industry-leading team i nvesting i n affordable housing and renewable energy. He l ater moved on to Google[X], the organization focused on i mproving the world through i nnovation and applied technology, where he l ed Strategy & Operations as the Chief Operating Officer for the Makani project.

Kojo i s a decorated US Marine Corps veteran who served i n Afghanistan’s Helmand province as part of NATO’s 2009 troop surge. Before Afghanistan he spent time as a Vice President within Citigroup’s Investment Bank, where he advised Fortune 500 clients on mergers, acquisitions and capital raising matters.

Currently Kojo serves i n advisory and board roles with the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator and Optimus Ride, an autonomous vehicle start-up. He i s also a member of the Urban Land Institute, where he sits on the San Francisco Innovation Product Council. Kojo has earned graduate degrees from Columbia University i n both Business Administration and International Affairs. He also holds a B.S.E. i n Aerospace Engineering from the University of Michigan.


Stephen Fusi is the Managing Director of the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation (CEI) at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business. In this role, Stephen is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Center, including creating co-curricular entrepreneurship experiences for Fuqua students. Prior to joining CEI, Stephen held marketing and brand management leadership roles at Fidelity Charitable, Starbucks, C.R. Bard, and Procter & Gamble.

Stephen is Founder and CEO of Posh Provisions Limited, a manufacturer of value-added snacks and other foodstuffs in Cameroon, Central Africa. He is also a private angel investor, focused on FinTech businesses operating in Africa. Stephen received an MBA from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business, and B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. He is a member of the Board of Directors of Note in the Pocket, which provides clothing to impoverished and homeless schoolchildren in North Carolina’s Wake County with dignity and love.


Fenaba R. Addo, Ph.D. is the Lorna Jorgensen Wendt Assistant Professor of Money, Relationships, and Equality in the School of Human Ecology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her research program examines the causes and consequences of debt and wealth inequality with a focus on higher education and family and relationships. Widely published in academic journals and policy outlets, her work on racial disparities in student debt, older Black women and wealth, and the Millennial wealth gap, sheds light on the ways that societal inequalities stem from historical legacies of racial exclusion and discrimination, and how they get reproduced over time. It also highlights the systemic barriers Black American women and men face in attaining economic security for their families. Dr. Addo is also a faculty affiliate of the Center for Financial Security, Institute for Research on Poverty, Center for Demography and Ecology, La Follette School of Public Affairs, and Department of Sociology. She received her Ph.D. in Policy Analysis and Management from Cornell University and holds a B.S. in Economics from Duke University. She is currently a visiting professor at the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University for the 2019-2020 academic year.


Monique Woodard is a venture capital investor at the intersection of technology and newly powerful consumer groups. She has invested in startup ecosystems across the US and sub-Saharan Africa. Her investments as Venture Partner at 500 Startups (a venture capital firm with +$350M AUM) and an angel investor include Blavity, Court Buddy, Mented Cosmetics, Silvernest, and many others.

Today, Monique invests in the future of technology being driven by major demographic trends like the shift to majority-minority, an increase in the spending power of women, and an aging Baby Boomer population. She invests in companies with global ambitions who are creating technology products that meet the needs of tomorrow’s internet users.

You can find out more at monique.vc and follow her on Twitter @moniquewoodard.


Loren Nadres is the Director of Economic Development in the NYC Mayor’s Office for International Affairs. In this capacity, she works with businesses, trade missions and NYC agencies to create inclusive economic opportunities for New Yorkers. She connects NYC and international businesses to opportunities, resources and support for successful growth. She has over 12 years of international economic and entrepreneurship development experience at institutions such as the World Bank, International Finance Corporation (IFC), and the United Nations. She also worked at a tech startup and an international development consulting firm.

Previously, she served as Director for Inclusive Growth and Strategic Partnerships at Emerging360, an international development consulting firm. Prior, she was an Advisor and Senior Consultant at the World Bank Group on innovation, entrepreneurship and gender inclusiveness. One of the programs she focused on was bolstering the growth of women owned businesses through the infoDev World Bank Group’s $15 million entrepreneurship global program, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa. She recently co-authored a World Bank report titled “Women Wavemakers: Practical Strategies for Recruiting and Retaining Women in Coding Bootcamps” which is focused on increasing inclusiveness in the tech industry and beyond. In her previous roles, she also served as a leadership member providing strategic guidance on a $20 million World Bank entrepreneurship program in Latin America and the Caribbean. Within the same program, she led a $3 million project providing business acceleration and startup support for women entrepreneurs across 14 countries in the region. Furthermore, she has had stints in Thailand and Trinidad & Tobago working on United Nations projects focused on gender, global health and youth empowerment.

Loren completed a Harvard University Kennedy School of Government’s Executive Education for Emerging Leaders. She holds a Master of Arts from Georgetown University and Bachelor of Arts from George Mason University. She participated in Georgetown’s Graduate Business Summer Exchange Program in International Management at Oxford University. In addition, she was a Fellow in the Asia Pacific Leadership Program at the East West Center based in Hawai’i and included field studies in Thailand and Laos. She tries to lead an active lifestyle and has survived triathlons, a marathon, and climbed Mt. Everest Base Camp. She immigrated from the Philippines and speaks Tagalog. Loren has traveled to nearly 80 countries for project work and global learning. She is proud to call New York City home and resides in Manhattan with her husband and children.


Dr. Thomas Shapiro, Director, Institute on Assets and Social Policy and the Pokross Professor of Law and Social Policy at The Heller School for Social Policy, Brandeis University. Professor Shapiro’s primary interest is in racial inequality and public policy. He is a leader in the wealth and race field with a particular focus on closing the racial wealth gap.  With Dr. Melvin Oliver, he wrote the award-winning Black Wealth/White Wealth, which received the 1997 Distinguished Scholarly Publication Award from the American Sociological Association. The Hidden Cost of Being African American: How Wealth Perpetuates Inequality, 2004, was widely reviewed. He co-authored a groundbreaking study, The Roots of the Widening Racial Wealth Gap: Explaining the Black-White Economic Divide. In 2011 he was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to study the wealth gap in South Africa.

Dr. Shapiro’s widely anticipated book Toxic Inequality: How America’s Wealth Gap Destroys Mobility, Deepens the Racial Divide, & Threatens Our Future was released March 2017.


Dr. Roshawnna Novellus is the Founder and CEO of EnrichHER, is a lending platform that connects female entrepreneurs with lenders who want to earn a return on their investment while fueling the growth of women-led businesses. Dr. Novellus is a gender equality advocate who believes in economic empowerment and inclusive economic growth. Dr. Novellus holds a Ph.D. in Systems Engineering, with a Minor in Finance, a Masters of Science in Information Technology emphasizing Information System Engineering, a Bachelor of Arts in Business Management Economics, and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering – achieving Summa Cum Laude in each. Roshawnna served on the Commission on Women for the City of Atlanta and was honored as one of the Women Who Means Business by the Atlanta Business Chronicle, one of the 40 Under 40 by Georgia Trend, a Halcyon Fellow for Social Impact, one of the Top 25 Disruptors and Innovators in Tech, and one of the 27 Black Founders and Investors to watch in 2019 by PItchBook.


William Boulding is the Dean and J.B. Fuqua Professor of Business Administration at The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University. His previous roles at Fuqua include Deputy Dean, Senior Associate Dean for Programs, Associate Dean for the Daytime MBA program, Area Coordinator for the Marketing faculty, Co-Director of the Teradata Center for Customer Relationship Management, and Academic Program Director for both the Marketing Leadership Forum and the Advanced Management Program.

He serves as a member of the World Economic Forum’s Council on Values and chairs the board of the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC (GMAC®), which is the organization that administers the GMAT exam. He is chair of the Board of Directors of Duke Corporate Education and serves on Swarthmore College’s Board of Managers.

He received his BA in Economics from Swarthmore College and his Ph.D. in Managerial Sciences and Applied Economics from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. His research interests lie at the intersection of management, marketing, and strategy. Of particular interest to Dr. Boulding is evaluating how managers make decisions and how consumers respond to those decisions. His recent work focuses on the domain of health care, examining the role of the patient experience, clinical adherence to standards, and managerial activity in determining the quality of delivered care.

He publishes his research in marketing, management and health journals including Marketing Science, Management Science, Journal of Marketing, the Journal of Consumer Research, the Harvard Business Review, the Journal of Marketing Research and the New England Journal of Medicine. He won the 1998 William F. O’Dell Award for the Journal of Marketing Research article making a “significant long-run contribution to the marketing discipline,” and the 2006 Harold H. Maynard Award for the Journal of Marketing article making a “significant contribution to marketing theory and thought.” Dr. Boulding has served on the editorial boards of the Journal of Marketing Research, the Journal of Consumer Research, and the Journal of Service Research. He is a past Associate Editor for the Journal of Consumer Research, and a past Area Editor for Marketing Science. 

Dr. Boulding’s teaching interests also span the areas of management, marketing, and strategy. He has taught core courses in all three areas (Leadership, Ethics and Organization; Marketing Management; Foundations of Strategy; and Culture, Civilization and Leadership). He is a past recipient of The Outstanding Teacher award from Fuqua, and has been cited for teaching excellence in various editions of the book Business Week Guide to the Best Business Schools spanning a period of two decades. He is also a recipient of the Bank of America Faculty Award “for excellence in teaching, research, leadership and service.” With respect to industry contact, he has engaged in sponsored research, consulting, or executive development with a number of companies such as IBM, AT&T, Bank of America, Sears, Eli Lilly, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, Ford Motor Company, Lafarge, U.S. Postal Service, Stride Rite, Wolseley, Hanes, Harnischfeger, Thomson Newspapers, Siemens, and Citibank.

It has been a privilege for him to serve, at the invitation of the White House, in developing best practices for how business schools can encourage success for women and working families as part of an initiative with the White House Council on Women and Girls and the Council of Economic Advisers. Dr. Boulding joined the New York Federal Reserve in examining the role business schools can play in rebuilding trust in the financial services sector.  He is a recurring contributor to LinkedIn and Fortune on the topic of leadership.


Cyril “CJ” Broderick, Jr. is the President of the Greater Durham Black Chamber of Commerce (GDBCC).  He is a proud Duke Alum, attaining a Bachelors of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Duke’s Pratt Engineering School.  Since Duke, CJ has worked as a consulting engineer as well as founded and operated a few businesses.  His strong interests in Durham, community development, and entrepreneurship have yielded leadership/board roles in several community organizations, such as the Durham Jaycees, the Durham Committee on the Affairs of Black People, the NCCU School of Public Administration,  the North Carolina Museum of History, his neighborhood association, and more.

CJ is currently a partner at ABC Strategy & Consulting, Inc., a firm that primarily helps small businesses and organizations with marketing and growth & development strategies.   CJ is also a consultant with The Equity Paradigm, a diversity and inclusion firm his amazing wife, Alexa Broderick founded and leads.


Nish Evans is the founder and president of Lennox and Grae, Inc. a real estate development firm, based in Durham. The company closed its first commercial acquisition, 112 W Main Street in the historic district of downtown Durham, in February. She successfully raised $2.5 million within 90 days to purchase the two-story, 9,256 square foot building. Her tenants include a popular restaurant (Luna Rotisserie and Empanadas), a regional law firm (Morningstar Law Group), and a local dance studio (Empower).

As president, Nish brings over 12 years of finance and operations experience from former roles in commercial and community banking. Prior to forming Lennox and Grae, she served as a portfolio analyst with Square 1 Bank, performing due diligence, underwriting and financial modeling for venture-backed technology and life science companies, and their investors.

Nish serves on two boards that align with her efforts to advance affordable housing and level academic opportunities for the Durham community-at-large. In addition to serving on two advisory committees that promote thought leadership, around diversity in construction, technology and entrepreneurship. Aside from all professional endeavors, she is a health enthusiast and doula (birth coach) and enjoys spending time with the future owners of the firm, Ellery Lennox (7) and Zoelen Grae (5).


Ted Archer, Executive Director, Global Philanthropy
Ted is an Executive Director within Global Philanthropy at JPMorgan Chase & Co, a global leader in corporate philanthropy with more than $220 million annually invested in communities and nonprofit organizations across 40 countries and spanning 6 continents.

Ted joined JPMorgan Chase & Co. in 2016 and Heads Small Business Forward, JPMorgan Chase Foundation’s global initiative to connect underserved small businesses with the capital, targeted assistance and support networks to help them grow faster, create jobs and strengthen local economies. In addition to working with leaders across the firm, in this role Ted directs a national investment portfolio with Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), business incubators, accelerators, and clusters; cohort based technical assistance programs and other community-based and policy-based support programs that help advance entrepreneurship as a vehicle for asset building and economic mobility.

Prior to joining JPMorgan Chase & Co. Ted served as Senior Manager, Small Business at SourceAmerica where he led small business strategy & government affairs activities. Prior to his work with SourceAmerica, Ted served under two DC Mayors as Chief of Staff for the District of Columbia Department of Small and Local Business Development and led the development and launch of new programs focused on delivering finance and market opportunities for small businesses locally and nationally. In addition, Ted has provided advisory services to client governments of the World Bank on strategies to improve investment climates through regulatory reforms and small business support approaches. Prior to his work in DC, Ted began his career at the KraftHeinz Company leading global business initiatives in Human Capital, Diversity & Inclusion, and Supply Chain.

Ted earned his Bachelor’s degree from the Williams School of Commerce, Economics, and Politics at Washington and Lee University and a Master of Public Administration from the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the University Of Pittsburgh.