By Gloria Romano-Barrera.
Excellence in leadership, responsibility, commitment, and courage are only a few qualities corporate America executives have in common. Through the LATINA Style Corporate Executives of the Year Program each year, LATINA Style recognizes the hard work and dedication Latinas are performing at the top of their respective company. The finalists listed below have been selected and recognized by their superiors and peers for their work, tenacity and success.
Global Client Segment and Strategy for
Merrill Lynch Wealth Management
Bank of America
Ileana Musa currently heads the Global Client Segment and Strategy for Merrill Lynch Wealth Management. In this role, Musa focuses on international financial advisors to ensure the delivery of a consistent, goals-based wealth management experience for their international high-net-worth and ultra-high-net worth clients.
Prior to this role, Musa was head of International Credit & Banking within Bank of Americas Global Wealth & Investment Management (GWIM) Banking group. In this role, she led the teams that supported and delivered integrated liquidity, cash management and lending solutions and services to Financial Advisors and high-net-worth clients in international markets. Previously, Musa served as the National Sales executive in Wealth Management Banking. Musa has held several leadership roles in the domestic, international and affluent banking platforms at JPMorgan Chase, where she lent her talent in growing the cross-border business for high-net-worth clients.
Musa chairs the Corporate Advisory Board for the Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA), serves on the board of Zoetic Stage, a South Florida Theatre Company and Art Partner with the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, as well as the Board of the Florida International Bankers Association, to name a few.
Corporate Senior Vice
President, Global Chief
Information Security Officer (GCISO)
Myrna Soto is Corporate SVP & GCISO (Global Chief Information Security Officer) at Comcast. In her role, Soto is responsible for aligning security initiatives with enterprise programs and business objectives to ensure information assets and technologies are adequately protected across the entire corporation.
Soto works closely with the technology and security teams across the organization, including Comcast Cable, NBCUniversal, Comcast Spectacor, Comcast Platform Services, etc. to develop Cyber Security, network/infrastructure security, data security strategies, operational efficacy of security programs, policies, and technology risk management that protect the interests of our customers, our employees, our critical technology assets, company brands and other critical stakeholders. Soto is also the Executive Champion for the Comcast affinity group “Unidos”.
Soto joined Comcast in September of 2009 after earning more than 20 years of focused Information Technology and Security experience and accolades within a variety of industries, including: financial services, hospitality, Insurance/Risk Management and gaming/entertainment. In 2009 she joined Comcast as, SVP & CIISO (Chief Infrastructure & Information Security Officer) for Comcast Cable and held this position until August 2015. In that role, she was responsible for Enterprise Information and Infrastructure Security strategy and operations for Comcast Cable.
She has previously held senior leadership positions with MGM Resorts International (formerly known as MGM MIRAGE), American Express, Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, Norwegian Cruise Lines and Kemper Insurance.
VP WW Go-To-Market
Technology Services Sales & Operations
As Hewlett Packard’s worldwide Technology Services Go-to-Market leader, Valdes and her team are responsible for developing and implementing the go-to-market sales strategy of HP’s premier Technology Services.
Valdes is an instrumental leader within the HP Enterprise Group, advocating solution selling and developing Go-To-Market programs that garner lifelong customers while staying in step with the changing IT landscape. She works closely with HP customers to understand the needs of the market and strives to go above and beyond by working cross HP to create go to market programs that exceed customer requirements.
Valdes is experienced in building and leading successful global sales teams. With over 30 years of experience, Valdes takes a creative approach to solving problems of the CXO and has exemplified an excellent ability to link technology to business impact and ROI. Additionally, she has the proven ability to develop and implement strategies that deliver organizational efficiencies.
Romelia H. Flores
IBM Distinguished Engineer and Master Inventor
Romelia H. Flores is one of IBM’s top 500 technical executives, earning the titles of IBM Distinguished Engineer in 2008 and IBM Master Inventor in 2009. In her current role as a Distinguished Engineer in the IBM Global Solution Center (GSC) located in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, Flores is the Chief Architect leading 70 technical architects and specialists who are responsible for enabling world-wide teams to drive two billion dollars of revenue impact every year through the creation of client-based industry prototypes and reusable technical assets.
Flores has brainstormed and collaborated with IBM clients in the Banking Industry, Insurance Industry, Energy & Utilities Industry as well as the Government Segment. She has collaborated with some of IBM’s largest clients around technology innovation, and holds 24 patents with an additional 26 patents pending.
Throughout her 32-year career with IBM, Flores has gained product development experience, developed IBM products, provided IBM technical support, exposed herself to non-IBM technology and enabled herself to evolve to become a strong technical executive for IBM.
Her technical interests are in solution design and asset reuse. Flores creates a strong technical strategy for her Global Solution Center team and ensures creation of reusable IBM assets.
Director of Strategic Alliances, New Devices Group
Sandra Lopez joined Intel in 2005 as B2B Integrated Marketing Manager. Leveraging her vast and proven marketing experience within the technology sector, she quickly began to transform B2B Marketing within Intel. She was then chartered to drive Intel’s Consumer Marketing Strategy group in which she led Intel’s focus on the Masterbrand, Intel, and the launch of the award winning campaign “Sponsors of Tomorrow”.
Recently, she was focused on launching Intel’s first smartphone and Android-based tablets. In this role, she trailblazed efforts on advocacy marketing, which garnered several accolades including the 2013 Marketers that Matter award sponsored by the Wall Street Journal and Sage Group. Currently, she has been chartered to drive Intel’s Wearable Business Development Strategy within the Fashion vertical. She has been a vocal voice on driving the convergence between fashion and technology.
Her tenacity to deliver impact extends beyond the walls of Intel.
Vice President, Chief Diversity Officer
MassMutual Financial Group
Lorie Valle-Yañez is the vice president and chief diversity officer for MassMutual Financial Group, a Fortune 100 company. Valle-Yañez developed and spearheads a comprehensive enterprise-wide diversity and inclusion strategy for MassMutual focused on leadership, marketplace & distribution, and workforce & workplace. Serving as an internal diversity consultant, advisor, and partner to the company’s senior leaders, business lines and employees, Valle-Yañez focuses on driving diversity and inclusion further into MassMutual’s culture and operations to help the company leverage its human capital, solve challenges, grow in new markets, and instill innovation.
Valle-Yañez has over 25 years of experience in the diversity arena. She serves on the ALPFA Corporate Advisory Board, the HACR CEF Legacy Advisory Council, and is a founding member of the Medici Group Diversity Drives Innovation community.
Director of Hispanic Consumer Marketing
Patricia Diaz has demonstrated 23 years of leadership in the Quick Service Restaurant Industry rising from her role as a restaurant crew member to her current role of McDonald’s Director of Hispanic Consumer Marketing while also earning a Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree in Business Administration.
Diaz was recruited to McDonald’s because of her strong record across the industry in Operations and Marketing. During her time at McDonald’s, Diaz has advanced at an accelerated pace and was chosen to participate in a first of its kind McDonald’s Accelerated Marketing Development program as well as the highly selective Leadership at McDonald’s Program (LAMP) which provides a focused development experience for high potential leaders to prepare them to lead McDonald’s into the future. Diaz is a member of the McDonald’s Hispanic Employee Business Network (HEBN). She also serves as the Hispanic Scholarship Ambassador and Marketing Lead for the RMHC/HACER Scholarship.
President & Chief Executive Officer
Hyatt Legal Plans, a wholly owned subsidiary of MetLife Co.
Ingrid Tolentino is President & Chief Executive Officer of Hyatt Legal Plans. Hyatt Legal Plans is the nation’s largest provider of group legal plans, serving three million people at more than 1,700 organizations, including over 150 Fortune 500® companies. In this role, Tolentino is responsible for the business strategy and performance of the Hyatt Legal Plans business. This includes responsibility for product manufacturing, product performance metrics, product profit-and-loss, as well as product enhancements.
Since taking on this position in 2014, Tolentino has made significant contributions in transforming the business to become better aligned to the customer, the marketplace and the distribution channels. Tolentino joined MetLife 23 years ago and, throughout her time with the company, has held numerous management and leadership positions of increasing responsibility and complexity.
Senior Vice President & Chief Procurement Officer
Grace Puma is the senior vice president and chief procurement officer for PepsiCo. In its global portfolio of food and beverage brands, PepsiCo has 22 different brands that generate more than $1 billion each in annual retail sales.
Puma joined PepsiCo in 2010 and leads a global organization that manages $30 billion of spend through best-in-class supply chain processes, highly effective commodity risk management practices, analytical-based productivity methodologies, and innovation via supplier partnerships.
Puma is a seasoned executive experienced at transforming decentralized procurement organizations into globally connected, locally wired business functions that drive performance through robust sourcing processes and world-class procurement teams. She is recognized as a leadership role model across complex and decentralized global business environments, and is highly valued for her ability to find innovative solutions and build strong business relationships.
Geisha J. Williams
President, PG&E Electric
Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E)
Geisha J. Williams has demonstrated a track record of leadership since the inception of her career at Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E) in 2007, as well as throughout her career as she progressed to officer-level positions at Florida Power & Light Company.
Williams has held many positions of increasing responsibilities throughout her career in the utility industry and was promoted to President of Electric at PG&E in August of 2015, making her the first Latina in the U.S. to attain the position of President of a regulated utility.
Williams is highly active both in the communities and as a leader for the companies Employee Resource Groups which ultimately carry out events in support of various community organizations.
Williams has demonstrated her excellence in leadership by serving as the expert and decision maker for the company on various initiatives that affects PG&E customers such as climate change, clean energy, electric rates, solar energy, and grid security among others. Due to her leadership, innovative skills and strategies, the company has improved its electric reliability over the past six years.
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