Advancement Of Women In STEM Programs - Challenges & Opportunities

In corporate America, studies have shown women start to fall behind on day 1 and keep losing ground with every step. There continues to be a need for us to do more - as individuals and as organizations. We need commitments to more than just programs on gender and diversity. We need an awareness of the underlying causes and as importantly what steps can be taken to get us to the place where all women are equally represented.

At WITI our mission is to empower women to achieve unimagined possibilities and transformations through technology, leadership and economic prosperity. As part of an ongoing partnership, WITI, IDC and Randstad Technologies have joined together to conduct a survey on how gender viewpoints differ in the workplace. The survey touches on a variety of topics to better understand what factors have helped shape employees' careers and what challenges they face in the workplace. To better understand where gender might result in different points of view, the survey was fielded to both women and men.

Come join WITI and Randstad Technologies as we present a panel of insightful, influential women to discuss the challenges and opportunities that exist in STEM fields. Some of the topics our panelists will cover: job security, influence of mentors, career advancement and Inhibitors, building your personal brand, navigating different points of view and lessons learned.

Monica C. Smith, Founder of Marketsmith, Inc. will be one of our panelists at the WITI (Women In Technology International) event in Parsippany on October 25th. Her foundation, Bring Dinner Home supports school children in Newark. We are asking all attendees to consider bringing a new winter coat for a child, sizes 4-16 preferred. The foundation also accepts gently used children's coats (sizes 4-16). Thank you for your helping us to help those in need, a winter coat means so much to these families.

Featured Speaker(s)

Roota Almeida

Roota Almeida is a dynamic senior IT Executive responsible for successful implementation of information security, risk and compliance systems and strategies across multiple industries with global operations. Currently, she is the AVP - Head of Information Security at Delta Dental of NJ and CT, leading the development and implementation of enterprise-wide information security strategy, policies, risk assessments and controls. She also serves as an Advisory Board Member for the Rutgers University's Cyber Security Program.

Prior to Delta Dental, Roota was the Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) at Covanta Holdings Corp., a leader in Energy-from-Waste. As a CISO she led all aspects of Information security and risk, including global information security awareness programs, policies, business continuity and incident response teams.

Roota has over 15 years of direct experience in establishing and maintaining global security strategies, architectures, standards, and compliance while driving the necessary cultural changes to affect measurable improvements in the organizations' security posture.

Roota is a recognized thought leader in the industry and serves as a Co-Chair for Evanta's NJ CxO Summits and Advisory Board Member for HMG's CIO and CSO Summits. She is also a Governing Body Member for various other technology conferences. She is a frequent speaker at various conferences such as MIT's CIO Symposium, HMG's CIO Summit of America. Her in-depth experience and expertise in the field of Information Security and Risk Management can be measured by the various articles, eBooks, interviews and podcasts she has to her credit.

Nicola (Nicki) Palmer is senior vice president/chief network engineering officer and head of wireless networks for Verizon, the largest wireless company in the United States. She is responsible for planning, operations & engineering of the nation's largest and most reliable 4G LTE wireless network, the company's 5G residential broadband and 5G mobile network deployments.

Palmer began her career at Bell Atlantic in 1990 and has held a number of leadership positions in engineering, operations, and program management supporting advanced data and IP products. Among many highlights throughout her career at Verizon and its predecessors, she was responsible for the planning, design and operation of global voice, data and IP networks, and also led the engineering and operations of the nation's premier fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) network, which powers Verizon's FiOS data and TV services.

She is active in a number of organizations including the National Academy Foundation, and is a passionate advocate for promoting education and careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM), especially for young women. She has been recognized by Fierce Wireless as one of the industry Women to Watch in 2016, a Top 100 CIO/CTO Leaders in STEM by STEMCONNECTOR, and as one of the Most Influential Women in Wireless.

Palmer earned a bachelor's degree in industrial engineering from Penn State University and an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton Business School. She resides in New Jersey with her husband and three children.

Monica C. Smith

With almost 20 years as the founder, owner and CEO Marketsmith, Inc., Monica has defied the odds in a personal quest to change the landscape of the advertising world in the boardroom, the c-suite and the office, forever. And with a heart as big as her vision, she has also sought to change the lives of the disenfranchised and underserved in her home state of New Jersey and the surrounding area in real, meaningful ways.

Monica founded Marketsmith, Inc., in 1999, and the agency is now the nation's leading woman-owned advertising and martech agency of its kind, serving local New Jersey clients as well as global brands across numerous industries. Identifying unmet client needs for more accurate and actionable omni-channel data analytics, Monica developed i.Predictus, a proprietary and patented marketing platform, the definitive leader in marketing and media data automation and visualization. With the company's unique I.P.Q. Approach, Marketsmith delivers end-to-end solutions that are driven by real-time data and data science yet grounded in human insight.

Monica's drive to create opportunities for everyone has led to the founding and support of numerous organizations that directly impact the lives of underserved children and their families in the Garden State. Bring Dinner Home, as just one example, has provided food and coats for thousands of Newark school children so that they can succeed in school rather than worry about their next meal, and dramatically driving increased test scores and attendance rates. "I believe those of us who have found success owe it to this world to make it a better place," Monica says.

Monica lives with her wife of 20+ years and six adopted children in Chester. Her first nonprofit, One More Smith also located in Chester is a forever home for neglected animals. She welcomes calls and discussions with anyone interested in ways to change for the better their world and the world around them.

Sabina Reinhardt

Sabina Reinhardt is a Leadership & Transition Strategist. Her breakthrough strategies empower, educate and elevate professional women in the corporate sector as well business owners and entrepreneurs to handle transitions effectively, redefine their way of thinking, and achieve previously unattainable success.

Sabina has created a revolutionary approach for clients to become their best ambassador, align strategic advocates and create their own blueprint for success. Clients around the globe have used her proprietary 3-tiered advocacy model to scale the career ladder and create the life they love.

Prior to founding Rocketing Life, her coaching & consulting firm, Sabina spent 15 years in the financial services industry, covering a variety of areas incl. Compliance, HR, Technology and Front Office. After earning her degree in International Business, she started her global career in her home town of Frankfurt. She then relocated to London in 2011 and to New York in 2014, fulfilling one of her biggest life dreams. In her down time she enjoys traveling with her family and friends.

Chris Martin is the key stakeholder in driving business development and oversees the execution of the company's overall sales strategy with a specialized focus on retail account growth. Chris has been instrumental in the company's initiatives tied to utilizing big data to develop intelligent sales models for the entire organization.

With over 15 years in the staffing and HR solutions industry, Chris started his career with Randstad back in 2002. He moved up the ranks first as Account Manager, then as a Branch Manager, Regional Manager of Permanent Recruiting overseeing teams in the Mid-Atlantic to the NYC Metro area, and then transitioned to support all of Randstad U.S. by establishing the company's Enterprise Solutions group. In this role, Chris sold across service lines offering new business development and strategic account management to key customer around the country.

Chris graduated from University of Massachusetts, Amherst with a Bachelor of Science in Sports Management from the Isenberg School of Management.

Schedule of Events

5:30 pm Check-in and networking
6:15 pm WITI Welcome & Introductions
6:30 pm Panel Presentation & Questions
8:00 pm WITI Raffles
8:15 pm Wrap up