"Legacies of Women Forum: Dare to Change-Step into Leadership"

Irene Natividad, President, Global Summit of Women

Irene Natividad is President of the Global Summit of Women, an 18-year old annual gathering of women leaders in business and government who come together to share strategies for increasing women’s economic empowerment globally.  Ms. Natividad also serves as Co-Chair of Corporate Women Directors International, which conducts research and brings together women corporate directors from around the world on issues of corporate governance.  In 2004, she was selected by Women’s eNews as one of the “21 Leaders for the 21st Century.” She was named in 1997 as one of “25 Most Influential Working Mothers” by Working Mother Magazine, and was also named in 1988 as one of the “100 Most Powerful Women in America” by Ladies Home Journal.

Linda Alexander, Vice President, Women’s Health and Global Advocacy, QIAGEN Corporation (USA)

Known for her leadership in public health, women’s health and women's health advocacy, Linda Alexander has had a varied career prior to becoming a corporate executive.   A retired Lt. Colonel with the US Army Nurse Corps, Ms. Alexander’s military career included assignments in community health nursing in the U.S. and Europe. She  has also published extensively on women's health issues and she is the first author of a lead women's health textbook, New Dimensions in Women's Health.  Ms. Alexander served for five years as President and CEO of ASHA, the American Social Health Association, where she worked in close partnership with industry, federal leaders, and health advocates to promote national awareness and resources for all sexually transmitted diseases.  In her current position as Vice President, Women’s Health and Global Advocacy for QIAGEN, she has oversight for corporate Women’s Health initiatives, the Global Market Development Team, health education efforts, and public advocacy programs.

Patricia Diaz Dennis, Senior Vice President and Assistant General Counsel, AT&T, Inc. (USA)
As Senior Vice President and Assistant General Counsel for AT&T Inc., Patricia Diaz Dennis is responsible for AT&T Corporate Litigation, Procurement, Corporate Real Estate, and Environmental and Corporate Compliance.  Earlier in her career, Ms. Dennis was appointed to three federal government positions:  As a commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission; as a member of the National Labor Relations Board; and as Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs.   Hispanic Magazine named her one of the top 25 Latinos in business and she received the 2007 Association of Fundraising Professionals Award for her commitment to volunteerism and philanthropy.   She is also Chair of the Board of Girl Scouts of the USA.

Maria de Lourdes (Lulu) Sobrino, Founder and CEO, Lulu’s Dessert Corporation (Mexico)

Maria de Lourdes Sobrino is Founder and CEO of Lulu’s Dessert® Corporation. Born and raised in Mexico City, Ms. Sobrino’s first business was in the tourism industry.  In 1982, Ms. Sobrino had to close her Mexican travel business due to unstable economic conditions in Mexico, but then came up with the idea of ready-to-eat gelatin while living in the U.S.  From the initial production of 300 cups of gelatin a day, Lulu’s Dessert® has become a multimillion dollar business and a leading maker of ready-to-eat desserts.  In her first book Thriving Latina Entrepreneurs in America, she shares her story along with other outstanding Latinas and their successes.

Maria del Carmen Valencia Martinez, Corporate Vice President for Systems, Wal-Mart Mexico

With more than 20 years of experience in the areas of Information Systems and Telecommunications, Maria del Carmen Valencia is Corporate Vice-President of Systems for Wal-Mart of Mexico.  In this role, she is responsible for providing support to more than 900 businesses in Mexico and for ensuring backup to operations in Argentina and Brazil, among other responsibilities.   In 2007, Ms. Valencia was named by Expansion as the "Second Most Powerful Woman in Business" in Mexico.  She was also selected as a noted personality by CNN en Espanol and recognized as one of the “Top 100 IT Leaders in Mexico” in 2008.