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Ascend Inspiring Across Generations

Courageous Conversations: Empowering Voices Across Generations

Speaker Bios


Arun Arasan

VP, Tech Manager

Bank of America

Arun is a Technology Manager in Enterprise Risk and Finance Technology. He leads the team supporting US Central Finance Aggregation and Regulatory Reporting which is responsible for sourcing instrument-level data from Authorized Data Sources, performs regulatory derivations, report aggregation and report production for the Federal Reserve. In his previous role, he led the Global Business Services team supporting Wholesale Credit Technologies in Global Banking. Arun has over 20 years in Information Technology and prior to joining the Bank, he held software development and leadership roles on projects involving Technology Transformation, Platform Modernization, Engineering and Architecture and adoption of Agile Development practices at Lender Processing Services, Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) platform rollout and AT&T in the Finance, Insurance and Telecom domain. Arun has been part of multiple Employee Networks at the Bank since 2017 and currently serves as the co-chair for Asian Leadership Network of North Texas (ALN NTX). Previously, he supported ALN NTX as the Professional Development co-chair since 2017. He also supports Mentoring in North Texas (MiNT) and the Year-Up program in a mentoring capacity. Arun lives in Frisco, Texas with his wife and two children. He enjoys reading, tennis, travel, podcasts, and camping. In his spare time, he supports his older daughter’s Boy Scout Troop as its Treasurer. Arun holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree in Architecture from Anna University, Chennai, and a Master of Science degree in Computer Science from Minnesota State University.

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Shuba Balasubramanian

Co-President of Ascend North Texas

Shuba is a principal with Deloitte Transactions and Business Analytics LLP and has 18 years of experience in leveraging advanced analytics to deliver deep insights to her clients through innovative and transformational solutions that help them address their most pressing issues on enterprise risk management. Shuba helps lead the digital initiatives for advanced analytics and cognitive intelligence for Energy & Resources industry. In prior roles, Shuba lead operations for off-shore forensic analytics practice. Shuba has authored numerous articles and serves as a speaker for various events that are industry, technology and leadership oriented. She has served in numerous leadership roles that allowed her to continue her passion for developing talent in a diverse multi-generational workforce. She is an advocate for Women in Technology and supports the growth of STEM skills with young scholars through her voluntary services at school districts. She currently serves as an Advisory Council member for MS in Business analytics program at McCombs School of Business at University of Texas - Austin.


Ruel Bognot



Ruel Bognot is an audit partner at BDO USA. He is a CPA and has more than 20 years of professional experience serving both public and private companies in a variety of industries, including asset management, natural resources and hospitality. He is responsible for all facets of client engagements, resolution of technical issues, ensuring the quality of all services delivered to clients and continually assessing client satisfaction. Ruel also has public accounting experience from other international accounting firms in the U.S. as well as from a Big Four firm in Canada, Indonesia, and the Philippines. Ruel lives in Fairview, Texas, with his wife, also a former auditor, and two teenage boys. Ruel leads BDO Southwest Region’s diversity, equity and inclusion initiative and is actively involved in various diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives within the firm and the community. He is a career advisor and is part of mentoring circles within BDO. He also participates in Financial Executive International’s (FEI) mentoring program for North Texas students. Ruel is also involved in campus recruiting, business development and various community services.

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Becky Caleb

Senior Vice President, Technology Executive
Bank of America

Rebecca Caleb is a Technology Executive leading Enterprise Transaction Services which includes Cash Servicing Technology and Merchant Operations Technology. She has overall responsibility for several enterprise applications driving Global Technology Strategy, Solutions Engineering, Architecture modernization, Products Management, Portfolio Delivery Management Execution, End to End Testing including Testing Automation, Risk and Audit management. She is also responsible for leading Cyber Resiliency and Operational Excellence efforts across key critical services. With an extensive background in Information Technology, Business and Management, she has held various senior leadership roles implementing strategic enterprise-wide transformations aimed at maximizing ROI through application of new technologies, driving digital innovation engineering, product management, portfolio delivery management, process improvement, promoting enterprise business agility, modernizing infrastructure, testing strategies and business process reengineering at the bank and in prior organizations for creation of better products and providing the best client experience. Becky is the current Executive Sponsor for the Asian Leadership Network - North Texas at Bank of America (with over 1500 members), a passionate advocate and champion for diversity, equity and inclusion, empowerment of women leaders. She is actively engaged with multiple employee networks and external organizations as sponsor and mentor - Leadership, Education, Advocacy and Development (LEAD) for Women, Women in Technology & Operations (WIT&O), Women’s Coaching program, Girls Who Code and Better Money Habits efforts. She has been instrumental in launching various impactful programs such as Mentoring in North Texas program across employee networks at Bank of America, “Share your Story” series (A platform for employees to share their experiences) and Asian Business Council to promote business integration while developing strong partnerships with the broader community and local universities/schools to promote financial literacy for students. Advisory Board Member for ASCEND North Texas and American Society of Software Engineers of Indian Origin in Dallas, TX - a renowned speaker and panelist at several industry conferences including Women in Technology International, National Association of Asian American Professionals, ASCEND, Technology Innovation conferences and more driving the culture of innovation and excellence forward. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science and Engineering, Master of Science degree in Management and Information Systems along with many other industry certifications. Becky lives in Prosper, Texas with her husband and two children.

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Job Chan



Job assists clients primarily with liquidity management, mergers and acquisitions, and Chapter 11 restructurings. His experience includes engagements in the areas of cross-border liquidity covenants and lender negotiations, and he has served as the lead on various client initiatives that have generated significant cost reductions. In the past five years, Job's clients have restructured $20 billion in debt. Job's industry experience includes energy, power, and retail clients. Job has a Bachelor of Business Administration in finance from the University of Texas at Austin.

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Christina Churchill

Principal (Board of Director)


Christina Churchill is principal at RSM US LLP and the strategy and operations lead of the management consulting practice. Christina previously worked in the manufacturing and financial services industries and has extensive experience working with private equity groups. Christina focuses on the planning, execution and delivery of operational improvement projects for middle market companies. She works with project owners to optimize process efficiency, performance and profitability through the use of technology. She has a proven track record of developing and implementing financial transformation, planning and analysis solutions, and operational process improvements. A passionate, team-oriented leader, Christina possesses a true versatility of skills that span human resources, benefits and payroll processes, to operational procedures, IT and accounting. She has cultivated and maintained meaningful relationships with clients and internal teams to empower them to succeed and excel both personally and professionally. Christina is the family office executive committee consulting representative, working closely with high net worth families to improve their technology and business efficiency. In this role, she consults on a variety of issues, including risk management, cybersecurity, audit, fraud and forensics, and technology services. She serves as chair of RSM’s Consulting Women’s Advisory Council and the STAR Central region board to help develop the next generation of female leaders, particularly in the field of technology. Christina was recognized for her leadership skills as one of Consulting Magazine’s 2020 Women Leaders in Technology.


Jin-Ya Huang


Break Bread, Break Borders

Jin-Ya Huang is a social impact, community development, and creative innovator with a focus on the intersection of equity, design, and social justice work. She is the founder of Break Bread, Break Borders (BBBB), a social enterprise empowering refugee women economically through the storytelling of food and culture. Jin-Ya is an expert in global marketing, and has over a decade of extensive background in advertising for Fossil, JCPenney, Neiman Marcus, and Keurig Dr Pepper. She is an acclaimed interdisciplinary artist who has shown in galleries in Dallas, Miami and New York. Her work examines her Asian identity and diasporic immigrant experience. Jin-Ya is an accomplished published writer and public speaker. Her work has been featured at the Bush Institute, Amon Carter Art Museum, Texas Lyceum, TEDx, Slow Food USA, Toyota of North America, Southern Living, Today Show, NPR Morning Edition and TIME Magazine, highlighted as a Community Bridge Builder Across America. With an eye towards new approaches to entrepreneurship, empowering women and improving race relations, she serves on the Advisory Board for RISD Equity Council, Encore Park at First Presbyterian and the Founding Board of Directors for Dallas Asian American Historical Society. Jin-Ya is highly regarded for her ability to bring communities and people of all backgrounds together. Huang is an appointed social entrepreneur at SMU Hunt Institute Economic Inclusion Consortium. She’s one of the D Magazine 78 Women Changing the Face of Dallas. Huang is the proud founding Board Director of Dallas Asian American Historical Society, a member of the Orchid Giving Circle (Texas Women’s Foundation Fund), Leadership Women Texas, and a PLS Presidential Leadership Scholar. She’s the recipient of the Entreprenista Chase Ink Top 10 Best Community-led Businesses, Mavs Foundation Business Assist, Maura Women Helping Women Award, and the Triumph of the Spirit for Human Rights Honoree. Jin-Ya is a current cohort of the Dallas Summit.

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Shekar Katuri

Managing Director
Bank of America

I'm a paragraph. Click here to add your own text and edit me. It's easy. Shekar Katuri Managing Director Bank of America Shekar Katuri is part of Global Strategy and Enterprise Platforms team. Currently, he leads AI Strategy and Governance efforts for the Bank managing the AI opportunity review and governance processes in accordance with Enterprise AI Policy, ensuring safe and effective use of AI across the Bank. He also works closely with Bank’s senior leadership in understanding and guiding strategic thinking in the use of AI. AI Policy adherence includes processes for developing safe and effective systems that are explainable, with appropriate human oversight, fairnees/bias considerations/legal & compliance considerations including Privacy. In his roles outside the Bank, he built a global Analytics business at a large Consulting firm, catering to the needs of Financial Services in the areas of AI/Analytics Strategy, Marketing, Product pricing, Financial Advisory, Regulatory Risk, Forensics, Internal Audit, AML, Model Risk Management amongst others, across consumer, commercial, investment banking and wealth management. Most of his career is built in driving business value through use of capabilities across Analytics Stack.

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Emily Lin

Senior Analyst


Emily is a senior analyst in Human Resources at Toyota Motor North America. Her role in Workforce Strategy & Planning focuses on developing and executing strategies to manage labor cost across the organization. Emily previously worked in Project Planning & Management and Accessory Development roles at Toyota. Emily is also the co-chair of Toyota Asian American Society in Alliance (TAASiA) Plano Chapter. Alongside her partner, she oversees the 11-person leadership team responsible for bringing professional development, cultural celebration, and community connection programs to over 900 members. Outside of work, Emily uses her professional skills for a cause – she recently served as the project manager for the Gary Lipman Invitational, a grassroots fundraiser that has raised over $1.6M in 12 years to drill new clean water wells in communities across West Africa.

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Tammy Meinershagen

Frisco City Council

City of Frisco

Tammy Meinershagen A recognized change maker and transformational leader, Tammy Meinershagen is Chief Innovation Officer and Managing Partner Dallas/Frisco at Blackshaw Partners. Tammy oversees all business strategies and operations expanding the Blackshaw brand, both in the U.S. and internationally. She also leads the firm’s Client Engagement in Dallas/Frisco. Tammy’s distinctive career includes 10+ years serving clients through strategic change, creating initiatives that mobilize key stakeholders and result in increased brand awareness and winning partnerships. Her work has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Dallas CEO Magazine, Korea Daily News, Dallas Morning News, WFAA, Local Profile Magazine, Frisco Style Magazine, and many other media outlets. Named the “Spirit of Frisco” by the Frisco Chamber of Commerce, Tammy made history as the first Asian-American to serve on Frisco City Council, well-known in the community for her positive impact championing arts, culture, and diversity. Currently, Tammy is a member of the Orchid Giving Circle through the Texas Women’s Foundation, supporting Asian-American causes in North Texas, and also an Advisory Board Member of the Frisco Arts Foundation, Leadership Prep School, and Legacy Christian Academy. Originally from Chicago, IL and a graduate of Northwestern University, Tammy and her husband Todd have three beautiful daughters, all in the creative sector. A professionally-trained musician, Tammy enjoys playing music whenever she can on her beloved Steinway piano and violin.

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Valmiki "Val" Mukherjee

Chairman and Founder of Cyber Future Foundation


Valmiki Mukherjee, a globally acclaimed Global CISO, Entrepreneur, and Philanthropist CEO, has spent over two decades crafting an extraordinary career path, leaving an indelible mark on the cybersecurity landscape and beyond. Renowned for his visionary leadership, Valmiki possesses a rare gift for orchestrating transformative global initiatives spanning diverse sectors. His ability to unite stakeholders from the public sector, academia, and industry underscores his exceptional leadership skills. Valmiki's holistic approach to cybersecurity has united societies, nations, and organizations, fostering a culture of security and resilience. In 2015, he founded the Cyber Future Foundation (CFF), which has since evolved into a global platform connecting business and national leaders with cybersecurity experts. Valmiki's philanthropic commitment is evident in initiatives such as the Global Commission on Cybersecurity Education, Cyber Workforce Development Program, and many other notable projects. Having held executive roles, including Managing Director at EY and Americas Cybersecurity Leader for Critical Infrastructure & Energy, Valmiki now serves as the Board Appointed Global CISO at Accolite Digital, a New Mountain Capital company. Valmiki's journey epitomizes his unwavering pursuit of excellence in cybersecurity. His leadership, entrepreneurship, and philanthropy have fortified digital defenses while ensuring a safer digital future. Valmiki stands as an inspiration, guiding future generations of cybersecurity professionals and philanthropic leaders toward a brighter, more secure world.

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Mai Nguyen

Advisory Manager


Mai is a Manager with Crowe in the Accounting Advisory practice. She began her career at Coca-Cola followed by a Big 4 firm before joining Crowe. Mai has over 10 years of advisory experience, specializing in fraud investigation, bankruptcy consulting, and accounting advisory. She has a background in public accounting and professional services experience helping clients identify, understand, and address business issues related to fraud, controls, and bankruptcy. Mai also assists clients in keeping up to date with accounting standards and prepare for special events, such as mergers and IPOs. Her experience includes fraud risk assessments, financial advisor for Debtors in bankruptcy, corporate investigations, and finance transformation. As the firmwide co-lead of the Asian Business Resource Group (BRG), Mai leads a team of dedicated individuals to plan and execute diverse and inclusive programming at the national level and the local level at Crowe. She also serves on the Board of the Women’s Finance Exchange – Dallas Chapter

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Lisa Ong

President & FOunder

Wishing Out Loud

Lisa M. Ong, PCC, CPA, is a distinguished diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) strategy consultant, speaker, and International Coach Federation Professional Certified Coach. Renowned as a "talent gardener" and "inclusion connector," Lisa is sought after by companies to drive momentum for their DEI strategies and to serve as an executive coach and speaker for leadership development programs. With a rich professional background, Lisa's journey includes serving as a national diversity director in PwC's Office of Diversity and Inclusion, an HR director, and an audit senior manager. She holds a BBA in Accounting from UT Austin and an MS in Management from UT Dallas, underpinning her expertise in both business and leadership. Lisa's accomplishments have not gone unnoticed. D CEO Magazine recognized her as one of "the most powerful business leaders in the Dallas Fort Worth metroplex" for three consecutive years in The Dallas 500. She also led Team Wishing Out Loud to victory, securing The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Dallas 2023 Visionary of the Year Award. Lisa is a dedicated advocate for diversity and inclusion. She is a lifetime member of Ascend and an Executive Advisor on the Ascend North Texas Board. Furthermore, Lisa shares her wisdom as a faculty member for Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics (LEAP), SHRM Linkage Women in Leadership Institute, and The Forum on Workplace Inclusion. Lisa's commitment extends to serving on numerous boards in the CPA, coaching, infusion nursing professions, and organizations that foster inclusive leadership and belonging for all. Lisa M. Ong's profound expertise, extensive contributions, and passion for inclusive leadership make her a sought-after figure in the world of DEI and coaching. Her journey continues to inspire positive change in organizations and communities alike.

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Dan Peril

SVP, North Texas/Austin Site and Market HR Executive
Bank of America

Dan is the North Texas/Austin Site and Market Human Resources Executive, providing HR support for over 14,600 employees and 2,400 contractors. Dan partners with the Market Presidents, Market Executive, Campus/Site Integration Leaders, Regional HR Executives, and LOB HR Leaders to enable site and market integration. He is focused on driving HR programs and initiatives such as leadership and employee development, employee satisfaction and related improvement opportunities, redeployment, market/site level risk mitigation, and Enterprise and LOB business strategies. Dan joined the company in 2007, where he led College and IT staffing functions for just shy of three years. Shortly afterward, he transitioned to lead staffing initiatives for call center functions, nationwide. In 2010, he rotated out of the Human Resources function and joined the Complaints organization, where he spent 6 years in a variety of roles, including serving as an Advocate Manager, Partner Performance Manager and Business Controls Manager. Dan also served in the Global Operations LOB (L&SS) as a Business Support Manager and the CAO organization as a Business Control Manager and Data Steward Executive for the Enterprise Services FLU. Dan re-joined the Human Resources function as the Plano Site Human Resources Manager, in May of 2021. Prior to joining Bank of America, Dan led college recruiting programs at MCI Telecommunications in Richardson, TX and BP, in Houston. Dan also served as the CHRO for Nationwide Recovery Systems, in Addison, TX for 5 years. Active in his community, Dan serves the City of Frisco as an alumnus of Leadership Frisco Class XXVI, Leadership Frisco Advisory Council, Corporate Advisory Council for MyPossibilities as well as the Frisco ISD District Advisory Council. Dan was also recently elected to the Board of Directors for Frisco Fastpacs, an organization which provides food to children when school is not in session. Dan is extremely engaged in local volunteer efforts, within the cities of Frisco and Plano. Dan lives in Frisco, TX with his wife, Ashley (also a Bank of America employee) and his two sons, avid tennis player Jackson (13) and avid drummer, Connor (11).

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Chef Nikky Phinyawatana


Asian Mint

Nikky Phinyawatana, widely known as Chef Nikky, is a visionary entrepreneur and the creative force behind Dallas' renowned Asian Mint Restaurants. With Asian Mint, she achieved accolades like Dallas Eater's #1 Best Thai Food and Culture Map's Top 100 Restaurants, earning praise from USA Today, Zagat, TripAdvisor (Certificate of Excellence), Dallas Observer, and D Magazine's Reader's Choice Award for Best Thai Restaurant. Chef Nikky's culinary artistry reflects her unwavering love and dedication, evident in her groundbreaking Asian Fusion menus and her commitment to philanthropy. A Les Dames d'Escoffier International member, Chef Nikky actively mentors and supports aspiring female culinary students through scholarships. She is also a Board of Trustee Member for the Texas Restaurant Association Education Foundation. In recognition of her outstanding contributions, Nikky was honored with the Women That Soar Award in the "Business Award 2017" category and the eWomen Network's "2017 Business Matchmaker of the Year" Award. She even graced the James Beard House Foundation in New York City, where she crafted a special dinner for Loy Krathong, Thailand's lunar celebration. Born and raised in Bangkok, Thailand, Nikky honed her culinary skills at El Centro College Culinary School and holds a BBA in Entrepreneur Studies and Marketing from Babson College. She currently resides in Dallas with her husband and two beautiful children. You can catch her on her streaming TV show, " Chef Nikky YouTube Channel". where she shares insights from her upcoming cookbook, travel adventures from exotic locales worldwide, and a glimpse into her bustling life. Chef Nikky is a true culinary luminary and philanthropic leader.

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Caroline Riskey 

Co-President of Ascend North Texas
Managing Director
Goldman Sachs

Caroline is head of Corporate Insurance and Risk Advisory at Goldman Sach’s . She is responsible for the oversight of insurance and risk management of corporate insurance for the firm. Caroline is a co-sponsor of Goldman Sach’s Dallas Asian Network and serves as a champion sponsor for the Black and Hispanic/Latinx Analyst and Associates in her division. Caroline joined Goldman Sachs in 2003 as an associate in the Realty Management Division and was named managing director in 2017. She has held many roles across Global Banking, Treasury, and Realty Management Divisions. Prior to joining the firm, she worked in global risk management, focused on property and casualty insurance solutions for financial, real estate, and private equity clients. Caroline serves on the board of the Pearl Street Insurance Company. She is a member of the Texas Women's Foundation's Orchid Giving Circle, and an active member of the National Charity League. Caroline earned BA degrees in International Relations and East Asian Arts and Languages from the University of Southern California and attended Waseda University in Tokyo, Japan.

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Dr. Raj Ragunathan

If You're So Smart, Why Aren't You Happy?

Professor of Business
University of Texas at Austin

Raj Raghunathan is Zale Centennial Professor of Business at the McCombs School of Business at UT Austin. He is interested in issues related to happiness & well-being, and his research has appeared in top journals such as The Journal of Consumer Research, and in mass media outlets, including The New York Times, and Fortune. Raj’s Psychology Today blog, Sapient Nature, has over 2 million page views. His online course on Employee Happiness, was rated as a Top MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) of 2019, his MOOC on general happiness, with over 450,000 students, and was voted the Top MOOC of 2015, 2016, 2017, & 2018. Raj’s book, If you’re so smart, why aren’t you happy?, has been translated into 13 languages, and was featured in the Atlantic, Time, Guardian, Times of India, Live mint, and Mid-day. Raj’s TED talk was viewed live (on STAR TV) by over 17 million people worldwide.

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Sonal Shah


The Texas Tribune

Sonal Shah is the chief executive officer at The Texas Tribune. She has started and led social impact efforts in academia, government, and the private and philanthropic sectors for over 25 years. Previously, she served as interim executive vice president at United Way Worldwide. Sonal founded The Asian American Foundation (TAAF) in Houston and founded and led Georgetown University’s Beeck Center for Social Impact and Innovation. Her background in government and policy include leading the White House Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation in the Obama administration, serving as an international economist at the Department of the Treasury, and as policy director for Pete Buttigieg's presidential campaign. In the private sector, Sonal led Goldman Sachs' environmental strategy and Google's global technology and impact investment initiatives. Sonal grew up in Houston, earned a B.A. in economics from the University of Chicago and an M.A. in economics from Duke University.

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Rachel Simon

Relationships at Work​

Executive, Speaker, Author

That’s how my book came to be: I've been giving a speech for the past 9 years on how to network within a big company like AT&T. I make my tips come to life by displaying real emails that my colleagues have sent me or that I've sent to them (with their permission of course!). The speech is extremely popular because it demystifies networking and I love seeing the lightbulbs go off for people as they realize how they can make the simple-yet-effective strategies work for them. Every time I present, someone tells me I should write a book. After hearing that request countless times, I finally did. And I'm proud to say it turned out quite well. It will absolutely help a lot of people, especially introverts like me! I love my family. I live in Dallas with my husband, Jason, of 23 years and we are the proud parents to two young adults, Abigail and Ethan. I love serving the community. In fact, 100% of the profits from the book Relationships at Work: How to Authentically Network within Your Company for the first year will go to the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas.

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Jay Subramanium

Managing Director


ayashree (Jay) is a Managing Director in the Financial Due Diligence practice within Deal Advisory & Strategy (DAS) at KPMG and focuses on Industrial Manufacturing and Consumer industries. Jayashree has over 12 years of experience providing deal advisory services to clients with KPMG. Prior to joining KPMG US, she worked with KPMG India for 4 years. She is also on the leadership committee for Women in DAS at KPMG and is a member of the Pan Asian Mentoring Circles for DAS.

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Chintan Thakkar

Managing Director


Chintan joined Protiviti in 2021 and is a Director in Protiviti's Risk & Compliance solution, specializing in internal audit services related to consumer protection regulatory requirements and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) in the financial services industry. His experience includes working with large banks in developing and operationalizing Compliance and AML audit teams with coverage responsibilities of 2nd line Compliance programs as well as 1st line compliance with regulations. He has over 17 years of banking experience, including experience with leading and executing variety of compliance audit engagements. Prior to joining, Protiviti, Chintan was an Executive director at a large Texas based Bank, where he was responsible for standing up a compliance focused audit team with responsibilities to audit consumer and Safety & Soundness regulations. He was also responsible for standing up an Issue validation program that covered Regulatory Matters Requiring Attention (MRA), Consent Order and Remediation/Restitution activities. Chintan holds the Certified Regulatory Compliance Manager (CRCM) and Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialist (CAMS) designations. Chintan has a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Rutgers State University and MBA in Finance from Ellis University.

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Subhashini Tripuraneni 

Managing Director


Subhashini Tripuraneni is passionate about solving business challenges, working with senior leaders to define business development strategies for differentiated customer experiences. Data, Analytics (including AI/ML), Software Engineering and Public Cloud are key areas she specializes in and has run large scale digital transformation efforts across Financial Services, Retail and Public sectors. She is currently Managing Director of People Analytics at JPMorgan Chase, informing human capital strategies globally across all the stages of employee life cycle. Prior to this role, she headed Artificial Intelligence at 7-Eleven, driving personalized customer experiences and in-store efficiencies. Additionally, she has authored a book, Artificial Intelligence in Amazon Web Services, detailing how to solve real world challenges involving big data, reducing time-to-market AI solutions. She holds an MBA from Wharton Business School and serves as an Analytics Advisory Board member of Information Technology and Operation Management at SMU. She likes to spend time with her family and reading books in her leisure.

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Christopher Yang

Group Vice President, Toyota Motor North America
President & CEO, Toyota Connected North America

In his role leading the Business Development division, Yang is responsible for the development of TMNA’s portfolio of new business ventures, alliances, and partnerships in the areas of EV Charging, battery lifecycle (4R), hydrogen fuel cell, flying mobility and IP monetization. He is currently leading the creation of Toyota’s EV charging and battery lifecycle ecosystem for Toyota’s lineup of new electrified vehicles. As deputy general counsel of TMNA, Yang leads the transactional legal practice at TMNA and provides executive leadership and counsel on global legal matters that involve Toyota entities around the world. TCNA serves as Toyota’s data science, software and innovation hub connecting vehicles, customers and businesses through connected solutions. As president and chief executive officer of TCNA, Yang is responsible for driving transformation change and delivering cutting edge technology, data and connectivity solutions that transform the customer experience. Previously, Yang has served as executive vice president and chief operating officer of TCNA and as its first general counsel. Yang is on the Board of Governors of the Japanese American National Museum and a council leader of the U.S.-Japan Council. Additionally, he serves as the executive sponsor of Toyota Asian American Society in Alliance (TAASiA). Prior to joining Toyota in 2011, Yang worked at the law firm of Latham & Watkins LLP, where he specialized in mergers and acquisitions, securities, and complex corporate transactions, including a secondment at General Electric Japan. Yang earned his bachelor’s degree in Political Science with high distinction from the University of California, Berkeley and was elected Phi Beta Kappa in 2000, and received his law degree from Georgetown University Law Center in 2003. Yang has been a devoted practitioner of the martial art of kendo for over 35 years and holds a 7th degree black belt. Yang is currently the coach of the U.S. Men’s National Kendo Team and was previously a member of the U.S. National Kendo Team for 18 years, when he placed second twice (2006 and 2009) and third three times (2003, 2012, 2015) at the World Kendo Team Championships, and is the former U.S. National Men’s Kendo Champion (2005).


Lumia Zaman

Director of Strategic Governance Digital & Technology


Lumia Zaman is a Director of Strategic Governance within the Digital and Technology practice at CBRE. She has over 10 years of experience leading digital transformation, process improvements, and risks & controls governance for Fortune 500 companies. Lumia serves as the VP of Community Relations within the Ascend North Texas leadership team and has been a member since 2015. She is a dedicated mentor and advocate for diversity and inclusion. Her commitment to mentorship and coaching expands both in professional and community spheres.

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