Disrupt The Default!

#DisruptTheDefault, this year's Awards events theme as well as Catalyst's latest awareness to action campaign, is a call to action for companies and individuals to shake up the way we think, speak, and act, and to make bold moves that will forge meaningful change for women, as well as men, in the workplace and the world. On March 26, we held a conference at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City that featured a full day of speakers, action sessions, and inspiration that challenged attendees to think about change differently and start making it happen immediately:

  • #DisruptTheDefault because change won’t happen without you!

  • #DisruptTheDefault because you can build awareness and make change.

  • #DisruptTheDefault means more smart talking and more immediate doing.

  • #DisruptTheDefault means saying “no” to the status quo.

For more than 20 years, the Catalyst Awards Conference has brought together experts from around the world to share knowledge and shape the dialogue about inclusive leadership and other critical factors related to women and workplaces around the globe. This gathering of experts is one of the strongest communities of change, shaping the global dialogue and individual organizational diversity and inclusion strategies in accordance with Catalyst's Vision: Changing workplaces. Changing lives.

The 2015 Catalyst Awards Conference was sponsored by Walmart.


Morning Program

7:15 a.m. – 8:30 a.m.
Check-In, Networking Breakfast, and Opening Remarks
Join us for breakfast and to network with nearly 600 professionals from Catalyst member companies and other leading companies and firms.

8:30 a.m. – 9:40 a.m.
2015 Catalyst Award Winners Plenary Session
The 2015 Catalyst Award-winning initiatives will be announced in late January. Senior leaders from winning companies will discuss their strategies for advancing women and creating inclusive workplaces.

Laura Sabattini, Vice President, Research, and Chair, Catalyst Award Evaluation Committee, Catalyst

Chevron Corporation Representatives:

♦  Melody Boone Meyer, President, Chevron Asia Pacific Exploration and Production Company
♦  Mike Wirth, Executive Vice President, Downstream and Chemicals 

Procter & Gamble Representatives:

♦  William P. Gipson, Chief Diversity Officer, Senior Vice President of Research and Development   
♦  Colleen Jay, President, Global Hair Care & Color                                                                                          

9:40 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.
Catalyst Award Winner Concurrent Sessions
Leaders from this year’s Award-winning organizations will discuss the impact their initiatives have had on their organizational cultures and how individual employees are experiencing that impact.

Chevron Corporation—The Chevron Way: Engineering Opportunities for Women 


♦  Serena Fong, Vice President, Government Affairs, Catalyst


♦  Jack Morris, Organizational Capability Manager & Advisor to Vice President, Chevron Energy Technology Company   

♦  Rhonda Morris, Vice President, Human Resources Downstream & Chemicals, Chevron Corporation

♦  Shariq Yosufzai, Vice President, Global Diversity, Chevron Corporation

Procter & Gamble – Everyone Valued, Everyone Included, Everyone Performing at Their Peak™


Amelia Costigan, Senior Associate, Information Center, Catalyst


♦  Lourdes Albacarys, Vice President-Research and Development, Corporate Functions Global Process and Packaging Development Capability, The Procter & Gamble Company

♦  Shelly McNamara, Vice President-Human Resources, P&G Global Health & Grooming and Corporate Functions, The Procter & Gamble Company                                                                   

♦  Jim McWhirter, HR Director – Global Employee & Labor Relations, The Procter & Gamble Company  

Luncheon Keynote

11:15 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
A Keynote Conversation With Mary T. Barra
Deborah Gillis, President & CEO, Catalyst, will chat with Mary T. Barra, CEO, General Motors Company, about her career, leadership philosophy, and ways in which she has “disrupted the default.”

Afternoon Program

1:00 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.
Catalyst Change Agent Action Sessions

Addressing Inclusion and “Otherness” in the Workplace: Practices That Create Impact
Have you ever wished you could take your most pressing talent management and diversity challenges, sit down with others who are facing the same issues, and brainstorm ways to create meaningful, lasting change? In this interactive session, you will hear from a panel of experts about strategies organizations have pioneered to successfully drive change—then use these examples of promising practices to spark new approaches while collaborating in small groups. This workshop-style session will focus on advancing inclusion for various groups in the workplace, including LGBT employees, women of color, men, and more.


♦  Jeffrey S. Grange, President, Specialty Insurance, QBE North America

♦  Denise L. Lewis, Vice President,  Chubb Group of Insurance Companies - Regional Marketing Manager - Atlanta, Georgia

♦  Beth A. Rauschenberger, Vice President, Office of Internal Audit, Nationwide Insurance 

♦  Troy Roderick, Head of Diversity & Inclusion, Telstra Corporation Ltd

♦  Julie S. Nugent, Vice President & Center Leader, Catalyst Research Center for Corporate Practice

♦  Alixandra Pollack, Director, Research, Catalyst

Session Sponsor: QBE


Disarm: Forget What You Think You Know About Millennials
Millennials are projected to make up 50% of the workforce by 2020. Enlisting this crucial group of employees in building better workplaces is essential to organizational success. As technology evolves (and individual careers along with it), the ideal workplace of tomorrow will look different than it does today. In this no-holds-barred, ask-anything panel, a group of millennials will address topics such as what success means to them, both personally and professionally, corporate social responsibility, entrepreneurial interests, and the relevance of feminism in a contemporary context. By sharing their thoughts and feelings, they may even bust some common myths and misperceptions!  


♦  Anna Beninger, Director, Research, Catalyst

♦  Maighan Moody, Director, Human Resources, Catalyst

♦  Yuling He, Senior Engineer, Environmental Science and Sustainable Technology, Alcoa Technical Center

♦  Caroline Ghosn, CEO,

♦  Caroline Fairchild, New Economy Editor, LinkedIn

♦  Bala Visalatha, Director, Sam’s Club Member Strategy @ Walmart

Session Sponsor: The Alcoa Foundation



Disrupt: Redefining the Role of Men as Full Partners in Gender Equality
Men have a critical role to play in creating inclusive workplaces. Catalyst research has found that less than half of men, who are key decision-makers in most workplaces, see gender stereotyping as a barrier to women’s advancement. In addition, many men are unfamiliar with how gender gaps in opportunity, pay, and advancement hurt them, too, both as leaders of companies and as members of families and communities. In order to create fairer workplaces in which everyone can succeed, men must be included in efforts to combat gender inequity.  In this panel discussion, you will hear from men in various stages of their careers, including some who have participate in a new initiative titled MARC Leaders, a six-month program that enhances inclusive leadership skills with an end goal of expanding workplace diversity.


♦  Jeff Barth, Program Director, MARC (Men Advocating Real Change), Catalyst

♦  Elizabeth R. Salib, PhD, Senior Associate, Research, Catalyst  


♦ George F. Cleveland; Assistant Vice President, AT&T Mobility Services

♦ John Lavorato, VP, Global Sales Operations, Dell Inc.

♦ Ben Newton, Senior Director - U.S. Ethics, Walmart

♦  Steve Proudman, Senior Associate, White Men as Full Diversity Partners

♦  Steve Stall, Business Segment Leader, Culture of Inclusion, Rockwell Automation

Session Sponsor: Rockwell Automation

Image result for rockwell automation logo


Interrupting Unconscious Bias
Unconscious biases: we all have them. They’re automatic and efficient mental shortcuts. But now that we have identified this universal aspect of human decision-making, how can we re-train ourselves and disrupt our default thinking to ensure that unintentional stereotyping doesn’t lead to missed opportunities? In this interactive session, participants will learn about strategies large and small, simple and complex. Attendees will learn to identify unconsciously biased thinking in themselves and others and develop inclusive leadership skills to combat it.


♦  Vandana Juneja, Regional Director, Central Canada, Catalyst



♦ Bill Henry, Vice President, Development Engineering, Deepwater, Shell

♦ Sam Jones, Founder, Data Labs  

♦ Shanin Lott, Senior Director, Professional Resources & Talent, Stikeman Elliott LLP

♦ Karyn Twaronite, Partner and Global Diversity & Inclusiveness Officer, @KTwaronite_EY


Session Sponsors: EY and Talent Lab


Special Screening: The Mask You Live In, 1:15 – 3:00 PM (additional fee of $25 USD for Full-Day Pass attendees, or purchase just the screening & closing session for $300 USD)

Is there a "boy crisis" in America? Is our male population suffering due to our emphasis on power, dominance, and aggression? The Mask You Live In explores how our narrow definition of masculinity is harming our boys, men, and society at large and unveils what we can do about it. Join us for this very special screening and discussion. 


Joy Ohm, Vice President & Editor-in-Chief

♦ Jessica Lee, Distribution Director, The Representation Project, @therepproject

The Mask You Live In

Pasta Station Provided By: Barilla 

Image result for barilla the choice of italy logo


3:15 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Closing Session
Amplifying the Positive Portrayal—and Power—of Women
Every word and picture matters. The way that women and men are portrayed in commercials, written into scripts, and reported on in the media profoundly affects our perception of gender roles. Changing the way we think, speak, and act can change the world. Join us to hear from this distinguished panel of change agents who are disrupting the default every day through words and deeds.


♦  Audrey Gallien, Senior Associate, Events

♦  Deborah M. Soon, Senior Vice President, Strategic Initiatives  


♦  Madeline Di Nonno, CEO, Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, @GDIGM 

♦  Anne Fulenwider, Editor in Chief, Marie Claire, @marieclaire

♦  Kat Gordon, Founder, The 3% Conference, @katgordon 

♦  Karalyn Leavens, SVP, Associate Creative Director, Neon (a FCB Health Company), @neonfcbhealth

♦  Jessica Lee, Distribution Director, The Representation Project,@therepproject, @jessicallee

Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media  Image result for marie claire logo               

Click on the image below to view the full 2015 Catalyst Awards Conference Workbook.


Click on the images below to view videos from the 2015 Catalyst Awards Conference.

Plenary Session

Chevron Breakout Session

Procter & Gamble Breakout Session


Millennials Breakout Session

Closing Session

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