Brenda Durham, Senior Vice President & Regional General Counsel for Marriott International, Inc., has been with Marriott for 21 years and is Marriott’s senior ranking Latina. Durham serves as primary legal counsel for Marriott’s hotels and resorts located throughout the Caribbean and Latin America. In this capacity, she provides oversight guidance to Marriott’s law department group supporting the region. Her team is comprised of 14 attorneys, paralegals, and support staff located in offices in Bethesda, Maryland, and Aventura, Florida, and together, they support development, operations, asset management, compliance, and casino oversight. She has a comprehensive practice that includes negotiating financial, equity, and management agreement transactions, hotel owner relationship development and dispute resolution, and global safety and security. During 2012 to 2014, Durham took on additional responsibilities in Madrid, Spain supporting Marriott’s JV partner/founder of the AC Hotel brand in the integration of the AC by Marriott brand. She is one of the region’s executive representatives on the Owner Franchise Advisory Council.
2020 TOP 12 COMPANIES
COMPANY OF THE YEAR
1. Bank of America
Managing Director, Head of Consumer & Small Business Strategy and Business Intelligence
Sofia Santos is Head of Consumer & Small Business Strategy and Business Intelligence for Bank of America. In this role, Santos is responsible for leading strategic initiatives within the Consumer and Small Business groups, partnering with different Consumer executives to further differentiate Bank of America from its competitors and drive growth. She works horizontally across the multiple products and sales channels to coordinate the strategy for Bank of America client segments, tracking results and performance, and adjusting the go-to-market approach as needed. She is also responsible for capturing competitive intelligence on peer banks, fintech, and financial services players. She scans the market and trends to assess opportunities and sources of competitive advantage to support the development of the bank’s strategic agenda. Santos and her team are also responsible for consumer banking strategic planning and executive presentations.
Santos also leads the Business Intelligence group. She drives client segmentation strategies and insights across the retail, preferred, and small business segments and partners with marketing, customer care, products, and solutions executives to develop a holistic and personalized go to market strategy for each client. Prior to joining Bank of America, Santos was a Partner at McKinsey & Company. She specialized in Financial Services, in particular Wealth and Asset Management, Life Insurance, and Corporate and Commercial Banking. Santos earned her MBA from Columbia Business School and also holds a Master’s degree in Applied Mathematics from Universidad do Porto, Portugal. She grew up in Portugal, spent several years in Latin America, mostly in Sao Paulo, and currently lives in New York City with her husband and three children.
Senior Global Inclusion & Diversity Lead and Market Client Practice Lead
A highly respected senior leader with global experience and expertise spanning three decades, Nellie Borrero, Senior Global Inclusion & Diversity Lead and Market Client Practice Lead is known for her unwavering passion for inclusion, diversity and sharp focus on equality. She works to raise awareness, re-shape cultures and increase understanding—at Accenture and with clients. Borrero joined Accenture in 1986 and created the first role for diversity efforts. A deeply committed advocate for change, she believes strongly that Accenture’s rich diversity makes the company stronger and more innovative and is focused on increasing the representation across all segments of diversity. In her current role, Borrero sets the vision and strategy behind the company’s diversity initiatives, working with its most senior leaders. Under her direction, the company launched several successful training programs around the world—spanning multiple segments of diversity. Her focus has included the creation of a global career development program for high-performing women, global positioning of the company’s LGBTQ+ and Persons with Disability agendas, and the design and execution of ethnic diversity-focused programs.
3. New York Life
Global Marketing Operations
New York Life Investments
Jomil Guerrero is Managing Director, Global Marketing Operations, for New York Life Investments. In her role, she is responsible for improving the effectiveness of marketing technology platforms, developing new value-add programs for clients, and continuing to build a consistent, high-quality RFP practice. Prior to her role in Investments Marketing, she served as Director of Project Management & Communications for New York Life Investments where she managed a variety of projects including change management initiatives, execution of new business strategies, and merger and acquisition integrations. She was also responsible for both the internal and external communication strategy across the business. Guerrero also served as Chief of Staff to CFO of Insurance and Agency, Chris Ashe where she was instrumental in helping the finance senior leadership team set strategic direction as the organization evolved to become a more dynamic business partner. She joined New York Life in 2011 as Director of Finance performing financial planning and analysis for both NYLIM and NYL Investor.
4. Johnson & Johnson
Vice President, Group Finance, Medical Devices
Flavia Pease is the Vice President, Group Finance, Medical Devices. She is responsible for providing senior financial strategy and leadership council for the Medical Devices organization. She is a member of the Global Finance Leadership Team and the Medical Devices Leadership Team. In her previous role, Pease provided financial leadership for the U.S. and Canada commercial pharmaceutical organizations, as Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer for Janssen North America Pharmaceuticals. Prior to this, she supported Alex Gorsky and the Executive Committee with the Company’s strategic planning process, and the advancement of the enterprise growth initiatives, cutting across Johnson & Johnson’s three sectors as the Vice President of the Enterprise Program Management Office. She began her career at Johnson & Johnson in 1998 within J&J’s LifeScan business and subsequently held finance leadership positions with Mergers and Acquisitions Analysis and J&J Medical Brazil. With over 20 years of diverse management experience, Flavia’s background also includes a broad geographic coverage, ranging from an assignment in Brazil, to supporting businesses in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.
Jennifer De La Torre
Senior Vice President- Finance Xandr
Jennifer De La Torre is the SVP Finance at Xandr, an organization focused on developing and growing a data-powered premium advertising marketplace. In this role, she is responsible for financial planning and analysis, forecasting, revenue assurance, and sales compensation. In her prior role as the AVP of Risk Management for AT&T, she was responsible for directing the strategy, implementation, management and administration of risk programs worldwide. She negotiated the structure, design and pricing of the insurance programs in order to ensure the most cost-efficient manner to maintain optimum capital utilization and oversees AT&T’s wholly-owned captive insurance company with nearly $3B in revenues. She also led the teams responsible for all workers compensation, general liability, automobile liability, and subrogation claims. De La Torre has also served as the Executive Director of Workforce Diversity. She also had responsibility for managing Employee Resource Groups and Employee Networks which have memberships in excess of 100,000.
6. JPMorgan Chase & Co.
Firmwide Conduct Risk Executive
Martha Rubio is the Firmwide Conduct Risk Executive for JPMorgan Chase. In this role, Rubio is responsible for establishing the policies and standards that govern the conduct of the firm’s approximately 250,000 employees across its diverse global businesses. She also works closely with senior colleagues in the lines of business and corporate functions to help embed programs and controls designed to uphold the highest standards of employee conduct, and provides senior management and the Board with regular updates on key risks. As a firmwide risk executive, she regularly interacts with the firm’s regulators in the U.S. and across the globe. Prior to this role, Rubio held several senior positions within JPMC Compliance driving firmwide strategic programs. Among other efforts, she was responsible for overseeing the multi-year implementation of enhancements to the firm’s Anti-Money Laundering Program, which ultimately resulted in changes to how all customers were on-boarded, monitored, and reviewed to assess the AML risk they posed to the firm.
Jennifer T. Martinez
Associate Vice President
Staff Operations Office of the Chief Customer Officer Nationwide
Jennifer (Jen) T. Martínez is Associate Vice President of Staff Operations for Nationwide’s Chief Customer Officer. In this role, she is accountable for advancing the Office of Chief Customer Officer priorities, driving strategic initiatives, and managing programs to elevate the customer experience and generate customer-driven growth. Previously, Martínez was chief of staff to the CEO and served as a key member of the transition team to support the establishment of Nationwide’s new leadership, mission, and vision in 2019. She joined Nationwide in 2013 with experience in-state economic development, international trade, and manufacturing. Her roles within Nationwide ranged from staff operations for P&C field sales to operations management, and P&L leadership of Nationwide’s group benefits business. Prior to chief of staff, she led the National Accounts sales strategy and team, as well as sales activation initiatives for NF Retirement Plans. In 2019, she was President of the Nationwide National Latino Alliance employee resource group and chair of NF’s United Way campaign. She is a U.S. Navy veteran and fluent in Spanish.
8. Colgate- Palmolive Company
Maria Elisa Carvajal
Vice President, Global Oral Care
Maria Elisa Carvajal serves as Vice President, Global Oral Care for the Colgate-Palmolive Company, based in New York. Carvajal is responsible for setting the strategy and driving growth of Colgate’s market-leading oral care business globally. Most recently, she was Vice President and General Manager, Global Marketing Communications, where she was responsible for Colgate’s media, digital and eCommerce global strategies and capabilities to build stronger brand experiences. Carvajal joined Colgate in 1990 as a Marketing Trainee in Colombia, and progressed through positions of increasing responsibility throughout Latin America, North America and Asia. Among her many roles and contributions, Carvajal has served as Vice President, Digital and Shopper Marketing for Colgate’s Latin America Division, where she helped advance Colgate’s Go-to-Market process and digital capabilities. Before that, Maria Elisa served as General Manager, New Products for Colgate’s U.S. Company, leading the development of Colgate Optic White Toothpaste and Colgate Total Mouthwash.
9. CVS Health
Nicole Reyes Morgan
Vice President Operations, Medical Affairs
Nicole Morgan is Vice President of Clinical Service Operations and is responsible for operational oversight for the National Clinical Appeals Unit. She also leads the Medical Affairs project management office responsible for portfolio management of strategic clinical initiatives. Nicole also partners with HR and medical director leaders across the enterprise to lead and develop the medical director talent strategy. She recently launched an Emerging Clinical Leader Program for high potential medical directors to ensure a strong pipeline of diverse clinical leaders. Morgan joined Aetna from Anthem, where she served as Staff Vice President of the Business Improvement Group. While there she developed a multi-year strategy for Service Operations, partnered with HR to support organizational design efforts, and drove continuous improvement initiatives across the organization. Prior to her role at Anthem, Morgan spent nearly 10 years at Cigna where she held various roles including: leading call and claim service operations, managing quality teams, leading the project launch of the Individual medical segment, running the Individual segment operations and driving a culture of consumer centricity.
Catherine Hernandez- Blades
Senior Vice President; Chief ESG and Communications Officer
With 25 years of professional success in optimizing operations, driving revenues, decreasing expenses and building high-performing, diverse teams, Catherine Hernandez-Blades is a metrics-focused integrated marketing and communications strategist, tactician and leader who understands the business side of the business. Hernandez-Blades is senior vice president, chief environmental, social and governance (ESG) and communications officer at Aflac. She is responsible for corporate communications, organizational communications, philanthropy, and ESG activities for the company, including the company’s Global SABRE award-winning corporate social responsibility (CSR) program. Hernandez-Blades joined Aflac in 2014 as senior vice president of Corporate Communications and has held leadership positions of increasing responsibility, including chief brand and communications officer in 2017 and her current position in February 2019. A change agent, she spent the last 15 years building organizations from the ground up and orchestrating and implementing large-scale turnarounds in highly regulated industries for international public companies in the Fortune 500.
11. Marriott International
Senior Vice President and Regional General Counsel
12. Wells Fargo & Company
Executive Vice President; Head of Talent Acquisition Strategy and Delivery
Carly Sanchez has a passion for maximizing opportunities for all people regardless of background, a passion she gets to fulfill every day through her role as head of Talent Acquisition Strategy and Delivery at Wells Fargo. Sanchez was taught equality at a young age, was raised to work hard, and continuously learn, three values she has carried with her throughout her career. She has held a variety of roles from leading global Talent Acquisition and Diversity at AIG to director of admissions for Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education. It was during her job at Harvard helping students follow educational dreams, that she realized her desire to help with the next stage of their lives: pursuing a career. She joined Wells Fargo in September of 2013 and is responsible for leading the strategy and execution of global enterprise recruiting delivery teams, Diversity Sourcing, Global Talent Attraction, Selection & Assessment and Affirmative Action. She is also actively involved in the Enterprise Diversity and Inclusion Council, which ensures that human capital diversity programs are aligned and support enterprise diversity priorities and expectations.