Megan Lutes is the Director of Legal for Convoy, Inc., a technology company that is changing the logistics and transportation industry with the use of modern technology. Convoy was recently named Geekwire’s 2018 Tech Titan of the Year and 2019's Deal of the Year. Convoy recently became Seattle's second Unicorn company, being valued at over a billion dollars and is one of the fastest-growing tech companies in the country with offices in Seattle and Atlanta growing in a matter of a few years to 900+ employees. Convoy has been in the news recently with its significant fundraising successes, with impressive investors such as CapitalG (Google's late stage venture arm), Jeff Bezos and venture capital firm Greylock Partners. Megan joins the panel with over a decade of legal experience both at law firms and in-house at large companies in the Puget Sound region. At Convoy she leads its commercial transactions team, handles its employment law matters, handles its immigration work and advises leadership on all types of legal matters.
Debra Page Coleman is the Senior Corporate Counsel, Employment at amazon. Prior to working in this role, she was the GVP, Associate General Counsel at Macy's. Debra recived her J.D. from Southern University Law Center.
Blake Barnes is a Senior Attorney at Microsoft, managing and defending employment litigation brought against Microsoft. Her experience covers all areas of workplace litigation, including discrimination/harassment/retaliation, wage/hour, FMLA, ADA, and all types of class actions brought by employees against employers. Blake has extensive experience providing advice to HR and management, as well as managing people and programs.
Emily partners with clients to offer strategic and comprehensive intellectual property strategies to help procure and protect their patent and trademark portfolios. She guides clients at every stage in the lifecycle of their intellectual property assets with an emphasis on planning, procurement of patents, opinions, enforcement and licensing. She served as a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer in Tanzania, East Africa and currently volunteers with the International Rescue Committee mentoring refugees brought to Seattle for resettlement.
Halley Agnello is the Chief Compliance Counsel for Fluke Corporation and other Fortive Field Solution Platform Operating Companies in Everett, Washington. Previously, Halley was at Cambia Health Solutions in Seattle where she served as Associate General Counsel, in the areas of privacy, product counsel and private equity. Previously, she was Security Counsel at Apple focusing on privacy, information and data security, and investigations. Halley also worked nearly six years as an Assistant US Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, and prior to that she served as a law clerk for a US federal judge in the Northern District of Illinois.
Halley earned her law degree at Harvard University and she holds a B.A. in Public Policy Studies from Duke University.
She and her husband have a son who is officially a toddler. When she is not working, Halley enjoys hiking, binge-watching Netflix and Amazon shows, and singing the “Wheels on the Bus” multiple times in a row.
Derek Goodman is a Corporate Counsel at Expeditors. Prior to working in this role, he was the Corporate Attorney at Uline. Derek received his J.D. at the University of Wisconsin Law School.
Ms. Kumi Yamamoto Baruffi joined Columbia Banking System and Columbia Bank in September 2014 as Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary. Ms. Baruffi oversees Columbia’s legal functions, including providing legal support for the company’s board of directors and legal oversight of corporate, regulatory and enterprise project management matters.
Prior to joining Columbia, Ms. Baruffi was a partner in a Seattle-based business law firm where she served on the board of directors and on the financial services team. During her 19 years at the firm, her practice focused on mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance and bank regulatory compliance.
She holds a law degree from Boston University School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts from Wellesley College. Born in Hong Kong and raised in Tokyo, Japan, Ms. Baruffi has served on the board of directors for the Japanese American Chamber of Commerce and has been named one of “Washington’s Super Lawyers” in Banking. She is the Chair of the American Bankers Association Midsize Bank General Counsels Group. In Seattle, she serves on the Board of Trustees of ArtsFund and the Board of Directors of the Executive Development Institute.
Jolene Marshall is the Vice President of Legal at Smartsheet. Prior to working in this role, she was Senior Counsel at Concur. Jolene received her J.D. at the University of Washington School of Law.
Alison Bettles is the Director & Associate General Counsel at Nordstrom. Prior to working with Nordstrom, she was an Associate at K&L Gates. Alison received her J.D. at the Seattle University School of Law.
Helen Yu is a forward-thinking, problem-solving legal professional with considerable experience managing the complex affairs of entities of all sizes. She is mission-driven and passionate about working alongside her clients and stakeholders to achieve their objectives. Yu holds a BA from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor; a JD from the Maurer School of Law at Indiana University, Bloomington; and, an MBA from the University of Oregon. She is a member of the Oregon and Washington State Bars, and also maintains senior professional certifications with both the HR Certification Institute and Society of Human Resource Management (SPHR and SHRM-SCP). Yu was honored by the Portland Business Journal as one of its “Forty Under 40” (2018) and recognized by Lawyers of Color as a “Nation’s Best” Western Region Honoree (2019). Outside of the office, Yu enjoys teaching group fitness classes (Zumba®, in particular) and spending time with her husband and young daughter.
Hewan Teshome is SVP and General Counsel of Climate Pledge Arena and NHL Seattle. Prior to this role, she served as VP and General Counsel of VICIS (a Seattle-based sports technology company) and Corporate / M&A Associate at Hogan Lovells New York. She holds a JD from Stanford Law School and BA from NYU.
As a member of Mayor Jenny Durkan’s cabinet, Mariko is the Director of the Seattle Office for Civil Rights (SOCR) which leads the City of Seattle’s Race and Social Justice Initiative, a citywide effort to end institutional racism in City government. Additionally, SOCR advances race and social justice through its policy work and by protecting civil rights in the city of Seattle. SOCR enforces local and federal civil rights laws (illegal discrimination in housing, employment, public accommodations and contracting, along with Seattle’s All-Gender Restroom Ordinance, the ban on providing conversion therapy to minors, and the Fair Chance Housing Ordinance).
Prior to serving in this role, Mariko worked at the Aspen Institute’s Forum for Community Solutions on a national effort to prepare young people who are out of work and out of school for employment opportunities with a focus on those provided by a corporate coalition of more than 50 U.S.-based companies. Her leadership roles have included Director of the City of Seattle’s Youth Violence Prevention Initiative and President & State Director of Communities In Schools of New Jersey where she led the state affiliate of the nation’s largest organization dedicated to keeping kids in school and helping them succeed in life.
Mariko's career in community organizing began in Nicaragua where she lived and worked for seven years during the Sandinista revolution serving in various roles including muralist, community education curriculum developer, and co-director of the Centro de Communicación Internacional. Mariko is a magna cum laude graduate of Yale University and holds a Masters of Public Administration from New York University. She currently resides in Seattle with her husband.
Samantha (Sam) C. Pak is Senior Intellectual Property Counsel for Stryker Corporation in Redmond, Washington. Stryker is one of the world’s leading medical technology companies, whose products include implants used in joint replacement, trauma, and spinal surgeries; surgical equipment and surgical navigation systems; endoscopic and communications systems; neurovascular products; patient handling and emergency medical equipment, and other medical devices used in a variety of specialties. Sam assists with Stryker’s IP litigation, IP agreements, management of patent and trademark portfolios; due diligence for business development; and provides a range of other IP services. Before arriving at Stryker in 2018, Sam worked in the legal department at The Boeing Company assisting on various IP services and transactions. Prior to joining Boeing, Sam also practiced at the Miller Nash law firm in its Seattle, WA office. There, her practice included assisting with IP litigation; patent and trademark prosecution; transactions; and IP counseling and opinions. During law school, Sam also prosecuted many patents at an IP boutique firm and completed an internship at Baxter Healthcare immediately after receiving her doctorate degree in biomedical engineering. Sam is admitted to practice before the USPTO and in Washington.
Steven Knipp is the Executive Director of GenPRIDE and joined GenPRIDE in July 2018. He currently resides in Columbia City with his family, and has called Seattle his home for 30 years.
Shawnte M. Mitchell, S.V.P., General Counsel and Corporate Affairs of Aptevo Therapeutics Inc., an exciting publicly traded biotech company based on Seattle WA, is a seasoned senior executive with over 15 years of experience helping companies increase organizational value. In her role, Shawnte serves as a member of the executive leadership team and as an advisor to the board of directors. She provides strategic legal advice in a variety of areas, including M&A, corporate governance, healthcare regulations, and product development. As the company’s chief compliance officer, she is responsible for overseeing risk and compliance policies and practices for the company’s operations.
Prior to Aptevo, Shawnte was V.P., Associate General Counsel at Emergent BioSolutions Inc., where she served in variety of capacities during her 8-year career in the organization. Beginning as M&A counsel, she played a leading role in the execution of the corporation’s acquisition strategy and later transitioned to lead a team providing strategic legal advice in the areas of corporate governance, manufacturing operations and product development.
Shawnte received her JD from George Washington University Law School and her BS in Biological Sciences from Stanford University. In her spare time, she serves on the board of Urban League of Seattle and Stanford Women on Boards and as a consultant to Aumazo Inc., a non-profit organization making secondary education opportunities available to girls in the Cameroon. She also serves as a mentor of high school girls as the co-chair of the Delta GEMS program run by Delta Sigma Theta, Inc.
Kristina has been in-house counsel at Expedia since 2016 working on regulatory issues, particularly government regulation of internet platforms. Prior to joining Expedia, Kristina was in private practice in Seattle and Washington, D.C., and in-house at Boeing, for a total of 15 years. In all of those roles, she focused on commercial litigation. She graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School and with distinction from Stanford University. She was named to the Puget Sound Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 list in 2008, and has served on the Boards of the Seattle Shakespeare Company, Mother Attorneys Mentoring Association of Seattle, and the Harvard Club of Seattle. Kristina loves to travel with her eleven-year-old daughter and do crosswords on the couch with her dog (who isn’t much help).