Vania is Vice President & Deputy General Counsel at United Airlines. In this role, Vania oversees a team of attorneys responsible for managing litigation and legal compliance in the areas of intellectual property, antitrust, commercial, employment, labor and benefits. She is also is responsible for global antitrust and competition compliance. Working closely with business stakeholders, her team provides counsel and direction in all of these areas.
Vania joined United in 1999. Prior to working for United Airlines, Vania was an associate with the law firm of Littler Mendelson. Vania received a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Northwestern University, and a JD from Harvard Law School.
Vania is a member of the American Bar Association and Hispanic National Bar Association. She currently serves on the Leadership Board of the National Immigrant Justice Center. She is also a founding member of the Western Suburban Giving Circle of the Chicago Foundation for Women.
Eileen Simon is general counsel, Global Businesses, at Mastercard.In this role, she is responsible for ensuring the legal connectivity between the Product & Innovation, Services and Marketing & Communications organizations, as well as Operations & Technology (O&T).She also has responsibility for legal support of mergers and acquisitions, and expanding Mastercard’s role in the payments ecosystem while managing risk.Leveraging the collective legal and business expertise of her team, she enables growth by creating solutions that meet the needs of Mastercard stakeholders.
In her previous role as chief franchise integrity officer, Ms. Simon protected the integrity of the network and brand by enabling customers to operate in a manner that optimized their performance while minimizing risk to the system.
Prior to that, as chief franchise development officer, Ms. Simon was responsible for development and implementation of a global franchise strategy that competitively differentiated Mastercard. In that role, she managed the evolution and automation of the company’s licensing and registration processes, rules and standards. She also led efforts to revamp the Mastercard compliance and dispute resolution programs to enable business, meet customer needs and protect the integrity of our brands.
Before that, Ms. Simon managed the defense of complex commercial litigation for Mastercard. She also supervised investigations of fraud and misconduct, oversaw management of the compliance function and helped develop and support Enterprise Risk Management at Mastercard.
Ms. Simon is a member of the Mastercard Global Diversity and Inclusion Council. Since 2010 she has been the executive sponsor of the Mastercard global Women’s Leadership Network.
Before joining Mastercard in June of 1999, Ms. Simon practiced law at Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP in New York City, where she concentrated in antitrust law and litigation.
Ms. Simon is President of the Board of Directors of the YWCA White Plains and Central Westchester. She also is Secretary of the Board of Directors of Legal Momentum, and is a member of the Strategy Committee. She is a recipient of the 2015 Legal Momentum “Aiming High” award. She is a member of The Conference Board’s Leadership Council on Advancing Women. Previously, Ms. Simon served on the Women’s Executive Society of Westchester and the Board of Directors of the Westchester/Fairfield Chapter of the Association of Corporate Counsel, where she co-chaired its Antitrust and Trade Regulation Committee. She was also a member of the Executive Committee of the New York State Bar Association Antitrust Section, and was named a “Super Lawyer” in 2007.
Ms. Simon graduated summa cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics from the Wharton School and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology. She was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. She received her J.D. from New York University School of Law, where she was elected to Order of Barristers and served on the Executive Board of Moot Court. Ms. Simon is admitted to practice law in New York and Connecticut.
Nicole Kelsey joined Amyris, a leading biotech company, as its General Counsel and Secretary, in August 2017. In her second public company General Counsel role, Ms. Kelsey’s career is characterized by a unique international reach in both legal practice and management experience. As a leader, Ms. Kelsey brings over 20 years of experience in both Fortune 500 companies and top-tier law firms to bear in the entrepreneurial environment of international technology companies. Ms. Kelsey actively mentors both women and men, both lawyers and tech industry professionals, and passionately sponsors diversity both within her Team and as a strategic partner across the company.
A Fulbright scholar, Ms. Kelsey has a J.D. from Northwestern University and a B.A. from Ohio State University, and is admitted to practice law in New York and Minnesota. Ms. Kelsey speaks four languages and studies Japanese, and is rearing her daughter as a bi-lingual international citizen. They are excited about their recent relocation from Paris to San Francisco, where it’ll be much easier to improve their surfing! After managing an art gallery out of her home in NYC from 2001 – 2005 and serving on the boards of several non-profit arts organizations in NYC and Minneapolis from 2004 – 2014, Ms. Kelsey is looking forward to putting her passion for the arts in service of the Bay Area’s exciting arts community
Neil R. Pandey is the Vice President of Legal and Compliance (General Counsel) of Credico (USA) LLC. In this role, Neil manages all legal and compliance matters for Credico and its affiliates. He implements strategic business practices, oversees all legal transactions and policies, manages risk and provides a broad array of legal and compliance guidance to Credico’s leadership. Prior to joining Credico, Neil worked as Associate Attorney in several law firms where his work focused on corporate white collar government investigations, commercial transactions and other forms of complex civil litigation. He brings over 10 years of legal expertise to the team at Credico. After obtaining his B.A. from the University of Illinois in Champaign Urbana, Neil graduated with honors from American University’s Washington College of Law. While in law school, Neil served as a Note and Comment Editor on the Administrative Law Review, competed in several Moot Court competitions and published two legal articles.
Cameron W. Woods currently works as Associate Counsel at Allstate Insurance Company, where he is a part of the Emerging Lawyers Development Program (ELDP). In this role, Cameron has worked in the regulatory and compliance practice group, as well as public policy and employment law. The program has allowed him to increase his knowledge about the company as well as enhance his overall legal skillset.
Cameron's academic backgrounds includes being the first student to complete the JD/M.S.Ed. joint degree program at Southern Illinois University School of Law. His master's degree focused in College Student Counseling and Personnel Services. This program also allowed him to explore his interest in Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity topics and strategies to make campuses (and workplaces) safer and inclusive. Cameron is also a proud graduate of the University of Arkansas, earning a B.A. in Political Science/Journalism, with a minor in African/African-American Studies. Go Hogs.
Cameron credits his drive to his parents: Paula Washington-Woods and the late Atty. Claudell Woods. It is through their love and commitment to their community that Cameron inspires to create the world a better place.
Devin Maddox is Vice President and General Counsel at Rivers Casino in Des Plaines, Illinois. In addition, she overseas Rivers’ Diversity and Inclusion Task Force and Charitable Foundation. The Diversity and Inclusion Task Force assists management in fostering a collaborative work environment that celebrates and respects diversity. Rivers’ Charitable Foundation donates over one million dollars each year to Illinois non-profit organizations that are committed to positively impacting Chicago-land communities. Prior to her joining Rivers in 2014, Devin was a Partner at the law firm of Tressler LLP, where she concentrated her litigation practice in the areas of employment law, corporate litigation and insurance services. Devin earned her Bachelor's degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago in English Writing and her law degree from The John Marshall Law School.
Marni Helfand is the General Counsel and Vice President of Human Resources for The Planet Group. Marni oversees all legal and HR functions including providing training, advising on all areas of compliance, negotiating client agreements, managing litigation, mergers and acquisitions, real estate and protecting the company's intellectual property.The Planet Group is a family of seven staffing and consulting companies, which together provide outsourced global workforce solutions in the life sciences, diversified energy, engineering, healthcare, IT and digital marketing industries.
After leaving private practice with the law firm of Littler Mendelson, most of Marni’s career has been spent in the staffing and consulting industries. Prior to beginning her career, Marni received her Bachelor's Degree in Industrial and Labor Relations form Cornell University, and attained her JD Law Degree from Northwestern University's School of Law.
Deborah G. Solmor is the General Counsel and Corporate Secretary at TCS Education System, a nonprofit system of colleges and universities. TCS’s affiliates include the Chicago School of Professional Psychology, Saybrook University, Pacific Oaks College and Children’s School, the Santa Barbara & Ventura Colleges of Law, the Dallas Nursing Institute and Kansas Health Science Center. Deborah leads the legal and compliance functions within this innovative model that focuses on supporting higher education institutions whose missions focus on student enrichment and community impact. Prior to joining TCS, she served as Vice President, Deputy General Counsel, Litigation and Chief Compliance Officer at Career Education Corporation, a publicly-traded provider of post-secondary education.
In addition to being a highly adaptable and collaborative business partner, Deborah is also a seasoned litigator. Prior to moving in-house, she spent many years as Counsel at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP where her practice focused on complex commercial and consumer litigation. While at Skadden she represented clients across diverse industries in all aspects of litigation and alternative dispute resolution proceedings. She is a CCEP certified compliance professional and is often invited to speak on topics including best practices in regulatory and internal investigations as well as issues related to compliance and marketing in higher education. She holds a Juris Doctor from the DePaul University College of Law and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Northwestern University.
Suleen Lee is corporate counsel at Sprout Social, a social media management and analytics platform that enables businesses to better connect to their customer through social channels. Suleen's primary areas of focus on the legal team are commercial contracts and data privacy/compliance. Prior to her time at Sprout Social, Suleen was the lead counsel at a boutique fitness concept and helped build a national franchising program from inception. Suleen Lee is a graduate of Duke University and the University of Illinois College of Law.
Rhonda Coleman is an attorney specializing in complex contract negotiation, risk management, and compliance counseling. She has experience across industries, working with companies in technology, food, sports and entertainment, manufacturing, insurance, and consumer products. Currently on the Contracting team of Accenture, she leads negotiations of multi-million dollar complex deals with Fortune 500 enterprise accounts across Products and Technology.
Rhonda has consulted for the St. Louis Chess Club, the premier chess club in the world, and managed international professional chess player and world championship challenger Fabiano Caruana. She is a former co-chair of the Corporate Counsel committee of Black Women Lawyer’s Association in Chicago and currently serves on the board of several non-profits, including the Menomonee Boys and Girls Club and the Chicago Chess Foundation. She is a mentor at the University of Chicago’s Polsky Institute where she is passionate about helping tech entrepreneurs grow and develop their companies. As an outgrowth of her work with entrepreneurs, Rhonda serves as General Counsel to Moon Meals, a Chicago-based start-up food company. Her most recent venture is a corporate board position to a cybercurrency start-up called Asset-Coin. Rhonda likes film, literature, music, cooking, and travel. She and her husband are the proud parents of three teenagers, and they live in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago.
TiShaunda McPherson currently serves as Corporate Counsel for Adtalem Global Education where she advises the organization on matters impacting or involving Adtalem’s global workforce.She also serves on the Integrity & Compliance team, which is tasked with strengthening the organization’s compliance functions and maintaining a culture of integrity.Prior to this role, Ms. McPherson served as the inaugural Director of Adtalem’s Office of Equity and Access, in which she led strategic planning and implementation of antidiscrimination compliance programs across six institutions.
Before joining Adtalem, Ms. McPherson was Senior Attorney for the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, where she advised the Department’s senior officials on regional trends and high profile cases, supervised attorneys and staff on case resolution, investigated and mediated complex allegations of discrimination, and delivered internal and external compliance seminars.
Ms. McPherson started her legal career as a Litigation Associate at Sonnenschein, Nath & Rosenthal (now Dentons) and at Kirkland & Ellis LLP. She also served as law clerk to the Honorable Joseph A. Greenaway, Jr., who now sits on the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. She remains active in local and national bar associations, has been a member of several non-profit boards, and is a regular volunteer in the community.
Kendall Mills is Senior Counsel for Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL), which employs more than 70,000 employees in 80 countries. JLL is a leader in the areas of commercial real estate and professional services and has been voted one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies for eleven consecutive years. In her role as Senior Counsel, Mills provides advice and counsel on employment law matters, directs internal ethics and employment investigations, ensures statutory compliance with employment laws, and drafts and assists in the development and implementation of company policies and programs. Prior to joining JLL, Mills was Employment Counsel at Allstate Insurance Company where she provided employment law advice and counsel to clients, managed litigation and directed internal ethics investigations. Mills was also responsible leading many of the Law and Regulation Department’s diversity and inclusion initiatives, including the development of a diversity and inclusion scorecard to measure Allstate’s Premier Law Firms’ commitment to diversity in the legal profession and the creation of Allstate’s General Counsel’s Excellence in Diversity Award. Mills received her Bachelor of Science in Communications from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and her Juris Doctor from John Marshall Law School in Chicago.
Bonnie Boone is a producer and client executive for Gallagher’s risk management practice group. She develops strategy and places professional liability and other casualty lines for a broad range of large clients. Her expertise includes large physician groups, healthcare organizations ( hospitals, MCO), and finical institutions.Her focus is on captives, cash flow-loss sensitive programs, and coverage analysis in these areas. She co-chairs the Managed Care Practice Group. She also manages overall coordination of Gallagher’s resources as well as account management and new business development.
Bonnie has over 37 years of experience in the insurance industry as a broker and underwriter. She joined Gallagher in 2017 from Marsh, where she sat on the national executive committee for its healthcare practice. Prior to that, she was with Alliant Insurances Services where she oversaw healthcare and casualty for the Chicago and New York offices. She also held a national position with Willis for more than a decade and worked with 280 retail offices on a global basis to produce business, market, and set strategy for the health care industry and casualty business. She chaired product line/industry segments for long-term care, managed care, and HPL (integrated delivery systems), among others. She has placed reinsurance for some the largest captive programs in the country.
Additional experience includes managing an underwriting staff and a book of business for Continental Insurance Company with a premium volume of $103 million. Establishing market direction, reinsurance treaties, developing rates, underwriting guidelines, and corporate strategies were a part of her duties.
She has been the underwriter and/ or broker on five of the top ten managed care companies in the country.
In December 2015 Bonnie was honored by Business Insurance, with its first Impact Award for exceptional contributions to diversity and inclusion in the industry. Bonnie is an accomplished lecturer and author. Recent speaking engagements include RIMS, IMAC and the Fox School of Business at Temple University.
In 2019 Bonnie recived the honor of Savoy Magazine Most Influential Women in Corporate America.
She also recived the 2019 Life Time Acheivemnt Award from NAIAA.
Beatrice L. James-Moore is Assistant Vice-President-Senior Legal Counsel with AT&T Services, Inc., where she provides legal counsel to members of AT&T’s Network Sourcing Group, which provides AT&T products and services to some of AT&T’s largest network integrator customers worldwide. Prior to joining this group, Beatrice worked with the government, education and medical sector clients where she provided counsel to sales members responsible for state and local government customers as well as large healthcare customers located in Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee. Beatrice was a founding member of the AT&T Legal Department Diversity Committee and is currently Co-Chair. She also participates in AT&T-sponsored Pro Bono activities. Beatrice joined AT&T, then Ameritech Corporation, in 1992. During her tenure with AT&T, Beatrice has held a variety of positions within the AT&T Legal Department. Prior to joining AT&T, she worked for Winston & Strawn in Chicago, IL and Simpson, Thacher & Bartlett in New York City.
Beatrice has actively participated in her community throughout her life. In addition to her current position as Vice Chair of the Just The Beginning Board, she is also an active member of Old St. Patrick’s Church and a former member of its Board of Trustees where she chaired the Diversity Committee. Beatrice also served as a member of the Board of Trustees for the Latin School of Chicago and the Board of Directors of the Ronald McDonald House near the University of Chicago. She and her husband, David Moore, were mentors in the LINK Unlimited Program for 16 years, an educational enrichment program for underprivileged students identified in elementary or junior high school as potential high achievers. During their involvement with LINK, they sponsored four students by assisting with student tuition for private high school and staying actively involved in a mentoring capacity throughout the student’s high school years. Beatrice is also actively involved with the many service projects sponsored by AT&T, including the AT&T Believe Chicago Project. Beatrice is an active member of the Chicago Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
Beatrice’s mission is to help individuals realize their true potential. With more than 25 years in corporate America, she has mentored numerous individuals in the corporate ranks and assisted and encouraged others to pursue both corporate and entrepreneurial goals.
Beatrice is married to David Moore, a Chicago businessman/entrepreneur. They have two children, Tayla Claire (23 years old) and David Reese (21 years old).
Beatrice earned a BS in Elementary Education from Louisiana State University, a Master of Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Chicago.
Tiffany M. Ferguson is a Senior Counsel Manager with Allstate's Employment & Benefits team. She is a hands-on, strategic and solution-oriented leader with significant experience advising national corporations on matters involving brand sensitive bet-the-company commercial and employment litigation and cross-border worker issues in North America, Northern Ireland and India. Before joining Allstate, Tiffany tried a variety of cases—from murder to Title VII. She successfully represented a municipality in a first of its kind bond fraud investigation in which the S.E.C. sought an emergency court order. Tiffany also successfully argued before the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals on the issues of scope of employment and Title VII. Her crisis management experience includes negotiations with the S.E.C., eDiscovery issues in the face of sanctions and workplace threats. Since its inception, she has led the Allstate legal department’s alternative fee arrangement project, a multi-year effort designed to better align Allstate’s business goals with that of its outside counsel.
Tiffany completed her three-year term as the Seventh Circuit representative for the ABA's Standing Committee on the Federal Judiciary in the fall of 2018. She has also been named as an Illinois Super Lawyer and received the University of Iowa's College of Law's Alumni Service Award for founding Back to Iowa an annual diversity and inclusion networking program for African American students and alumni. Back to Iowa will celebrate its 24th anniversary this spring.
Tiffany studied English Literature at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana where her focus was 19th Century English poets. She earned her J.D. at the University of Iowa College of Law and began her interest in employment law during a clinical course there. A professed law nerd, she is curious about data analytics, process improvement and technology. You can follow her @curiouscounsel or on LinkedIn. Tiffany is a native South Sider, Insecure and Russian Doll fan and proud momma of an Andrew Jackson Language Academy first grader.
Wendy Webb Williams is the Chief Legal Officer of Sara Lee Frozen Bakery LLC, leading both legal and compliance. After receiving her law degree from the University of Maryland School of Law in 2001, Wendy began her legal career as a Judicial Clerk to the Honorable Robert M Bell, Chief Judge (ret.) on the Maryland Court of Appeals, then joined McGuire Woods LLP in Baltimore, MD. Wendy joined US Foodservice, Inc. in 2007, and spent 8-years there in a variety of roles, eventually serving as Associate General Counsel, in which she supported the merchandising, compliance, operational strategy, employment and government sales functions.In September 2015, Wendy joined Mead Johnson Nutrition to lead the law department for the North America and Europe regions, supporting the commercial, regulatory and litigation needs in the US, Canada, and six countries in Europe. Mead Johnson Nutrition is the maker of the EnfamilÒ family of infant and toddler food products and was acquired by Reckitt Benckiser. Wendy joined Sara Lee in December 2018.
Connie is a pragmatic, solution-driven, and business-minded partner with experience successfully advising and representing employers in a broad range of labor and employment matters. After spending some time “in the business”, at Toyota Motor North America, Connie serves as Managing Counsel and helps support Toyota Financial Services, who provides retail financing, leasing, and insurance products to Toyota customers.
Her current role includes partnering with HR and business leaders to help achieve outcomes that are right for Toyota’s business goals and team members. Connie provides advice and counsel on a broad range of topics such as harassment, retaliation, leaves, and wage and hour issues. But she most enjoys working to help build and create amazing work cultures where employees can thrive, and to find the areas where business needs and employee interests intersect.
Prior to joining Toyota, Connie was a partner at Liebert Cassidy Whitmore, which specializes in public sector labor and employment in California. Connie graduated with a B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley with a degree in Political Economies of Industrial Societies, and received her J.D. from Pepperdine University.
Julie Honor is General Counsel at 3Q Digital. She manages the organization's legal risks, negotiates commercial contracts and corporate transactions, and advises on employment, data privacy, litigation, and intellectual property matters. Prior to her role at 3Q, Julie built out and led the legal department at Rise Interactive and managed North American commercial work for Anixter. She brings to 3Q a unique background, having specialized in change management consulting, where she worked with clients to re-engineer processes and optimize organizational design, in addition to her years in private practice focusing on class action, business, and intellectual property litigation.
Julie graduated cum laude from Indiana University - Maurer School of Law and earned a bachelor's degree with the highest distinction in supply chain and information systems from The Pennsylvania State University.