Here are our confirmed speakers. Please stay tuned while more speakers are joining.
Hon. David Alward
Canadian Consul General to New England
David Nathan Alward was appointed as Canada’s Consul General to New England in May of 2015, and serves as Canada’s representative in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
He was born in Beverly, Massachusetts and is the son of Rev. Ford and Jean Alward. He graduated from Nackawic Senior High School in New Brunswick and completed his Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology at Bryan College in Dayton, Tennessee.
Mr. Alward was employed with the Canadian federal government from 1982 until 1996. From 1996 to 1999, he was self-employed as a human resource development and community development consultant.
He was first elected to the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick in 1999, was sworn in as Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Aquaculture in 2003, and took the oath of office to become the 32nd Premier of New Brunswick in 2010.
As an active member of his community, Mr. Alward volunteered as an emergency medical technician and laboratory instructor with St. John Ambulance and as a firefighter with the Meductic Fire Department. He has also served as a volunteer in recreational activities and student tutoring, and was a member of the Woodstock Rotary Club in New Brunswick.
Mr. Alward and his wife Rhonda have two adult sons, Jonathan and Benjamin. He and his family still maintain a small family farm in Riceville, New Brunswick, where they raise purebred Hereford cattle.
Moni Xinye An
Partner, Aretean Capital & Director, China House Consultancy
Ms. An combines a well-diversified career in the Australian banking and financial service sector with on the ground experience of China outbound investments.
Ms. An is currently a partner of Aretean Capital, an Australian financial service firm that specializes in cross border M&A, IPO, funds management and investment advisory.
She is also a director of China House Consultancy, an investment advisory firm established to provide Chinese state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and large private investors to reach quality energy, mineral and agricultural projects in Australia. (China House Consultancy was officially launched by His Excellency, Mr. Zhou Wenzhong, formerly the Chinese Ambassador of the United States and Secretary-General of Boao Forum for Asia in August 2012.)
Over the past 15 years, Ms. An has acted as board member for an SGX listed REIT, and held senior positions in one of Australia’s Stock Exchanges and an ASX listed fund of funds. She also served as executive director and treasurer for a decorated funds management group. Ms. An possesses extensive experience in both Debt and Equity Capital Markets in Australia, Structured Finance, M&A and Initial Public Offerings.
Ms. An holds a Master of Applied Finance in Macquarie University and a Bachelor of Economics in the University of New South Wales. She has also served as a lecturer for the subject of Chinese Capital Markets for the Em-Lyon MBA School’s China program.
SVP of Americas, Search Laboratory
Chris is SVP Americas for Search Laboratory, the global performance marketing agency specializing in SEO, SEM, Social Media, Online PR and Programmatic Display in over 30 languages. Chris provides strategic leadership and direction for Search Laboratory’s U.S. operations, working with clients and internal teams to deliver profitable online marketing campaigns across multiple countries & languages. Chris began his career in export sales and marketing before finding his way into the digital world, and worked in email and marketing automation prior to joining Search Laboratory. When he is not helping clients to grow their global customer base, Chris spends a lot of time sampling New York’s many restaurants.
Sr. Director, Head of Optica Business Development, Cambridge Associates
David Baeckelandt (MA, Early Modern Japanese History, University of Illinois, C-U) is Senior Director, Head of Optica Business Development, at Cambridge Associates ("C|A"). Optica is Cambridge Associates' digital tools division. C|A advises on approximately $5 trillion AUM globally. C|A clients include endowments, foundations, family offices, pensions, and sovereign wealth funds around the world. Earlier Baeckelandt worked for investment management firms in institutional sales, and for Mercer Investment Consulting, where he was a Principal and the U.S. Business Leader for the Analytics and Research Group.
From 1994-2002 Baeckelandt worked for William Blair & Co., where he set up and ran the Japan subsidiary and the Tokyo branch office. This was the first foreign, dual licensed, investment advisory firm in Japan. Baeckelandt began his career selling investment management services to Japanese transplants in the U.S. for the predecessor banks of Mitsubishi UFJ (1988-1994), after stints as a translator (The Japanese Stock Market, Praeger, 1988) and as an interpreter for a joint venture (TOP USA, Moran, KS).
David Baeckelandt has spoken on subjects connecting history and finance in Japan, Benelux, and the United States. He has been an invited speaker at U.S. and Japanese universities (Northwestern's Kellogg School, University of Chicago's Booth School, Indiana's Kelly School, Konan University, and others), professional associations (the CFA Society of Chicago), museums (The Chicago History Museum, The Museum of American Finance in New York), non-profits (The AKAMAI Foundation, The Japan America Society of Chicago) and foreign affiliated groups (JETRO).
Baeckelandt has published nearly one hundred articles on the nexus of finance and history (primarily in The Journal of Financial History, Scripophily, Paper Money, etc.). Separately, Baeckelandt published Japanese Financial Art, which offers an overview of the history of Japanese scripophily (stock and bond certificates). The proceeds of this book go to the Japan America Society of Chicago. Earlier, Baeckelandt published Hawaiian Financial Art, which explores Honolulu's history as a financial center and the contributions of the Hawaiian Islands to scripophily (proceeds donated to the AKAMAI Foundation).
David Baeckelandt has served on several non-profit Boards (notably the Japan America Society of Chicago) and splits his time between Boston, MA and Glenview IL with his wife and three children.
President, Swedish American Chamber of Commerce New England
Christina Björnström serves as the President of the Swedish American Chamber of Commerce New England and as Executive Director of the SACC Accelerator. Christina has strong expertise in marketing, developing strategic partnerships, and communications. Previously, Christina has cofounded two startups, and also served as an investigative human rights journalist in the United Kingdom, Los Angeles, and Southeast Asia. She currently serves as a Judge for the Hult Prize, mentor at MassChallenge, and is an advisor to several startups, particularly those with a focus on social enterprise and health. On the side, Christina helps students apply to top 5 MBA programs around the world.
Partner/Attorney, Middleton & Shrull, LLC
Matthew is a Partner at Middleton & Shrull, LLC, which he rejoined in 2015 after spending several years as an associate with a customs and international trade law firm in Dallas, TX, and as a member of Ernst and Young’s Global Trade practice in Dallas and Houston, TX. Since 2011, Matthew has committed himself exclusively to representing clients in all aspects of international trade law.
Matthew earned his juris doctorate degree from Loyola Law School, Los Angeles in 2010, and a master of laws degree (LL.M.) in International Economic Law from the University of London – School Of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in 2011. Matthew also obtained a bachelor’s degree in Multinational Business Operations from Florida State University in 2004.
Matthew is a licensed customs broker and is admitted to practice law in Massachusetts, New York and the U.S. Court of International Trade. Matthew is a member of the American Bar Association, the Customs and International Trade Bar Association, the Coalition of New England Companies for Trade, the French American Chamber of Commerce – New England and the USA 500 Clubs.
Matthew holds LL.M. degree from University of London – SOAS, J.D. from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, and a B.S. degree from Florida State University (2004).
Dr. Phil Budden
Senior Lecturer & Diplomatic Advisor to REAP, MIT Sloan School of Management
Phil Budden is a Senior Lecturer at MIT's Management School, in Sloan's TIES (Technological Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Strategic-management) Group, where he focuses on 'innovation-driven entrepreneurship' (IDE) and innovation ecosystems. Phil co-teaches in the successful 'Regional Entrepreneurship Acceleration Program' (REAP) and 'Regional Entrepreneurship Acceleration Lab' (REAL).
Phil's approach combines academic, historical and real-world perspectives on how different stakeholders - including Entrepreneurs, Universities and 'Risk Capital' providers, alongside Corporate enterprises and Government policymakers - can all contribute to building successful innovation ecosystems.
Phil is currently on leave from the British Government, and joins MIT having worked recently in Boston's private sector for the Royal Bank of Scotland's US subsidiary, Citizens Bank.
Phil has held these posts with the British government: British Cabinet Office, London (5/6/2001-6/30/2002); British Embassy, Washington DC (7/1/2002-8/5/2007); 1st Secretary (UK-US Technology, Science & Innovation) Washington DC; Adviser to the PM at No10 (European/institutional strategy) London, UK; British Consul General to New England (2007-2012).
Phil holds a BA and MA in History from Lincoln College, the University of Oxford; an MA in History and Government from Cornell University; and a PhD (DPhil) in History and International Political Economy from the University of Oxford.
North America Director, Dezan Shira & Associates
Richard is the Director of the North American Region for Dezan Shira & Associates, a specialist FDI consultancy based in Asia.
Based in Boston, Richard guides North American individuals and companies through the process of establishing, maintaining and expanding their businesses in China, Hong Kong, Singapore and the rest of Asia particularly India & Vietnam.
Prior to his relocation to the USA, Richard was the Regional Director of the Yangtze River Delta Region for Dezan Shira & Associates based in Shanghai for a number of years. Richard has lived & worked in China for over 10 years.
Prior to Dezan Shira & Associates, Richard, an Australian lawyer and Certified Public Accountant, worked in business and commercial consulting both in Australia and China for the past twenty years. He was also previously a partner at Ernst & Young Australia. Richard holds an LLB from the University of Adelaide and a Master of Laws from the University of Sydney.
Richard is a member of the ABA International Section and participates in the China, India and Asia Pacific Committees.
Joanne C. Chiu
Director, China Desk, Marks Paneth LLP
Joanne Chiu, CPA, is Director of the China Desk at Marks Paneth LLP. Ms. Chiu has 15 years of experience in public accounting. Her areas of specialty include real estate (both commercial and residential), estates and trusts, and high-net-worth individuals. She has served a broad range of international clients who investing real estate. She advises many EB-5 clients including developers and investors, and has spoken on EB-5 panels. Joanne is First Vice President & Board Director of Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA) NY Manhattan Chapter, and International Committee Member of Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA) National.
President, Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA) NY Manhattan Chapter
Real Estate Salesperson, Keller Williams
Cassandra Cho is the President of Asian Real Estate Association of American (AREAA) Manhattan and Chapter Development Chair of AREAA National. She began her career in sales and marketing with a Japanese and European luxury brand. From there, Cassandra formed her own production company and produced events for domestic and international corporate clients and several notable non-profits. A native New Yorker and broker with Keller Williams Realty, her international experience gives her a unique perspective in working with Chinese, foreign and newly emigrated clients, guiding them through the U.S. education system (primary, secondary, university) as they buy, sell, or invest in the New York real estate market.
Joseph Falcao is a Finance Executive with an extensive international and operational background in Fortune 500, start-up, and private companies. He enjoys the challenge of turnaround work and fostering high-growth.
Currently CFO of medical device manufacturer Microline Surgical, Joe previously served as CFO of the McCue Corporation with responsibility for International Operations and held senior financial roles at iBasis and and the Cabot Corporation. Joe has lived and worked in the USA, Brazil, Belgium, and Malaysia and conducted business in numerous other countries including the UK, Holland, Spain, Japan, China, India, Australia, Argentina, Mexico, and Canada. He is citizen of USA, Brazil, and Europe. Fluent in Portuguese and Spanish, Joe also has a working knowledge of French.
Joe’s academic background includes degrees from the most prestigious universities in Brazil (The University of São Paulo and the Fundação Getulio Vargas) and updated “tool-box” and rekindled knowledge acquired at Babson College and Boston University (Boston and Brussels).
Joe is an active member of professional groups in the Boston Area. He is a member of the CFO RoundTable and serves on the board of the MIT Sloan CFO Summit; A founding member of Brazil-Today, Joe is also a long-standing member of the IERG (International Executive Resource Group).
Shareholder and Trademark & Copyright Attorney, Ruberto, Israel & Weiner
Stacey Friends is a shareholder of Ruberto, Israel & Weiner, P.C. Her practice is focused on trademark, copyright and entertainment law. Stacey handles all aspects of trademark clearance, registration, and enforcement, both federally and internationally, for large and small companies. She is a member of the Technology Group at RIW, which represents clients in the software, mobile, digital media and other technology fields, and the Hospitality and Retail Services Group, which represents many well-known restaurant and retail groups. Stacey is a summa cum laude graduate of Suffolk University Law School, where she has also taught Copyright Law. Stacey is a member of the International Trademark Association (INTA), serving on their Emerging Issues Committee, and is also a member of the European Community Trademark Association (ECTA), and the Copyright Society. Stacey is a frequent speaker on trademark and copyright law, served for two years as an advisor to the PayPal Start Tank on IP issues, and is currently a mentor at MassChallenge, the world’s largest start-up accelerator.
President & CEO, The Partnership, Inc.
Carol Fulp is President and CEO of The Partnership, Inc., a premier organization dedicated to enhancing the competitiveness of the region by attracting, developing, retaining and convening multicultural professionals. During its 28 year history, The Partnership has collaborated with nearly 300 corporations who have sponsored more than 4,000 multicultural executives and professionals in the organization’s innovative leadership development programming.
Prior to The Partnership, Fulp was Senior Vice President of Corporate Responsibility and Brand Management at John Hancock Financial.
Given her leadership in business and public service, President Obama appointed Fulp as a Representative of the United States of America to the Sixty-fifth Session of the United Nations General Assembly. Fulp was a member of the Obama for America National Finance Committee.
Fulp is a graduate of the University of the State of New York. She is a recipient of an honorary doctorate of law from New England Law Boston and a honorary doctorate from Salem State University.
Co-Founder & Partner, 451 Marketing
AJ is obsessed with making clients happy. When he co-founded 451 Marketing in 2004 with partner Nick Lowe, their purpose was simple: Create an agency that helps people fall “crazy-in-love” with brands. Although the agency has grown significantly since then, he has never lost sight of what they stand for as an agency. Today at 451 Marketing, AJ oversees the agency’s strategic direction as well as the sales and marketing efforts for the different offices. He brings over 14 years of experience in brand strategy, public relations, advertising, search engine optimization, and interactive marketing.
Prior to co-founding 451, AJ was a Vice President at Zeeo Interactive, Inc., an award-winning interactive agency based in Boston. At Zeeo, AJ provided brand strategy, interactive marketing and digital advertising strategy for internationally recognized companies such as Time Warner, CookingLight.com and Disney. Prior to that, AJ was the Vice President of Public Relations for AsiaFoods.com, an online Asian food company that specialized in the importation and distribution of Asian foods into the mainstream marketplace. He helped to build the company from the ground up and eventually positioned it for a successful acquisition.
In 2010, Boston Business Journal named AJ to the 40 Under 40 Class – a prestigious list of business and civic leaders who collectively represent the next wave of talent and commitment in the Boston economy. AJ is an active member of the Greater Boston business community and currently sits on the Board of Directors for the CITI Center for Performing Arts, the Old North Church Foundation and March of Dimes of Boston and on the advisory board for Special Olympics Massachusetts. Previously, AJ served as President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Boston Irish Business Association. He has also served on the board of Junior Achievement of Northern New England.
AJ received a bachelor’s in journalism from University of Massachusetts at Amherst, where he captained the UMass Men’s rugby team and was named a two-time All-American. AJ later helped to lead the Boston Irish Wolfhounds Rugby Football Club to two USA Rugby Division I national titles in 2003 and 2004 and played professionally in Limerick, Ireland for the Young Munster Rugby Football Club.
Chief Marketing Officer, Radius
Dwight brings a multi-disciplinary background to his role as Radius’ Chief Marketing Officer. He has worked in both B2B and B2C companies in a variety of marketing functions as well as in management and P&L leadership positions. At Radius Dwight is focused on demand generation and on establishing the Radius brand as the clear choice for companies looking to expand into new markets or who desire to make their international operations simpler and safer.
Prior to joining Radius, Dwight was with Forrester Research, where he spent four years as the CMO leading Brand, Customer Intelligence, Demand Generation, Interactive Marketing, Public Relations & Corporate Communications as well as Creative Services. Before that Dwight spent three years growing the Forrester Leadership Boards business focused on helping Marketers and Strategists lead more effectively by staying well versed on best practices and the rapidly changing technology landscape. His experience in professional services extends to The Forbes Consulting Group where he served as the Managing Director of the Quantitative Analytics division. Additionally, he led Sales and Marketing for a digital music start up, and worked at Hasbro, Welch’s and Scott Paper in a variety of marketing and sales roles. Dwight holds a BS in Business Administration from Bucknell University.
Executive Vice President, Real Estate, MassDevelopment
Richard Henderson brings more than 20 years of economic development and urban planning experience to MassDevelopment. As a director at the Massachusetts Port Authority, he played an instrumental role in planning and developing Massport’s South Boston waterfront properties including the World Trade Center complex, Manulife USA Headquarters, the Marriott Renaissance Hotel, and several industrial and residential projects. Prior to his work at MassPort, Henderson was assistant secretary of economic affairs for the Commonwealth and principal author of a statewide economic strategy, Choosing to Compete. Mr. Henderson also served as director of policy planning for the Boston Redevelopment Authority.
He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Williams College and holds a Master of Philosophy in Urban Design and Regional Planning from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.
Deputy Consul-General of Brazil in Boston
Breno Hermann is currently Deputy Consul-General of Brazil in Boston. Before coming to Boston he served in Geneva (Mission of Brazil to the World Trade Organization) and Mexico, where he was head of the trade promotion sector of the Brazilian Embassy in Mexico City. In his previous positions, he has dealt with trade, security and integration (Mercosur) issues. In Brasília, he was head of the United Nations Division and the Mercosur Division for Political and Institutional Issues. Mr. Hermann was born in São Paulo. He graduated in Law and holds Master degrees in both International Relations and Philosophy.
Partner, Nixon Peabody
Linda is a partner in Nixon Peabody’s M&A and Corporate Transactions practice group and China & Asia Pacific practice group. Linda has extensive experience representing clients in their business transactions, with a specialty in cross-border corporate and commercial transactions involving the United States and China. Linda has a J.D. and LL.M. degree from Saint Louis University School of Law, magna cum laude.
Attorney, Law Office of Ellen S. Kief
Law Office of Ellen S. Kief, Immigration Law Practice focuses on U.S. Business and Family Immigration, representing both individual and corporate clients within the U.S. and around the world. Born in Montreal, Ms. Kief is a dual national – USA and Canadian. Ms. Kief is admitted to the Massachusetts Bar, U.S. District Court of Massachusetts, and U.S. Court of Appeals 1st Circuit. She serves as Vice President on the Executive Board of the New England- Canada Business Council (NECBC).
Her immigration law practice representation includes cross-border travel, business visas, family visas, permanent residence, and U.S. citizenship. She is a national speaker and educator on issues related to US immigration law. As an active member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) she serves as Chair of New England Immigration National Day of Action, in Washington, DC; U.S. Canada Immigration Liaison; and Global Migration Committee. She is very active in the Boston Community and served as Co-Chair of the Immigration Section for the Boston Bar Association.
Ms. Kief is a recipient of the Denis Maguire Award, Honoring Extraordinary Commitment to Equal Access to Justice. Her interests involve running the Boston Marathon for Dana Farber and Team in Training and serves as a running guide for the Massachusetts Institute for the Blind and Visually Impaired. She also enjoys organizing bicycle trips and riding to support charitable health organizations.
Dr. Mark S. Langevin
Director of the Brazil Initiative & Research Professor of Elliott School of International Affairs, George Washington University
Dr. Langevin is Director of BrazilWorks (brazilworks.net), International Advisor to the Associação Brasileira dos Produtores de Algodão (Abrapa), Director of the Brazil Initiative and Research Professor at George Washington University - Elliot School of International Affairs and George Mason University's School of Policy, Government and International Affairs. He specializes in assisting capital goods, energy, and medical equipment and information firms understand the market, regulatory and tax policy framework for distributing and manufacturing in Brazil.
Dr. Langevin researches and writes extensively on Brazilian energy policymaking and United States-Brazil relations. He is a regular contributor to such publications as: American Diplomacy, Boletim Meridiano 47, Brazzil, the Inter-American Dialogue’s Latin American Advisor, Journal of Energy Security, the Labor Studies Journal, Review of Renewable Energy Law and Policy, and Universitas:Relações Internacionais. He is also a regular speaker and guest lecturer on topics related to Brazil, United States-Brazil relations, energy, and the environment.
Ph.D. in Political Science and a M.A. in Latin American Studies from the University of Arizona in Tucson. Graduated with a B.A. in Liberal Arts with a concentration in Public Health from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA.
Director, International Tax, Radius
Tom is a UK and Australian Chartered Accountant with more than 15 years corporate & international tax advisory, controversy and compliance experience across a range of tax jurisdictions, tax technical issues and industries. Tom’s client portfolio has included large publically-held multinationals, privately owned groups and high wealth individuals.
Tom heads up the Radius Tax Advisory team and recently joined Radius from Deloitte Australia were he was a Corporate & International Tax Director, leading a busy tax advisory and controversy team, responsible for ensuring the provision of high quality tax work, including:
He has successfully drafted submissions and negotiated settlement on matters involving hundreds of millions of dollars under dispute, including obtaining full remission of interest and penalties.
Tom takes pride in exceptional client service, adding immediate value, and has a demonstrated ability to effectively communicate with multiple internal and external stakeholders in pressurised environments.
Tom has experience in practice management and the development of effective tax teams.
Vice President, New England Sales Network & Former President of Swedish American Chamber of Commerce New England (2013-2015)
Stella Lovén is a Boston-based serial entrepreneur with extensive experience in running businesses both in Sweden and the United States. As the former President (2013-2016) of the Swedish American Chamber of Commerce New England (SACCNE), Stella is also the Founder of the Swedish Accelerator – the first startup accelerator program of its kind dedicated to helping Swedish companies expand to the US market. In her role as President of SACCNE, Stella spearheaded the Swedish American Life Tech Forum (lifetechforum.com), a conference centered on helping Swedish life sciences companies navigate the American market entrance and regulatory process. Stella additionally has a strong background in marketing and communications, boasting a successful track record in running large-scale international campaigns for household names such as Volvo and the Olympics.
Senior Partner, Eneas Alternative Investments
Edvaldo Morata is an entrepreneur and private equity partner with over 30 years of experience in international banking and asset management.
Edvaldo is co-founder of Eneas Alternative Investments, a private equity firm focused on unlocking value in firms located in the Iberian Peninsula, and heading their international operations located in the US. He is involved in investment relations with responsibility over the Americas and direct involvement in the strategic, management and investment processes.
Edvaldo was recently appointed the president of Lug Healthcare Technology, an Eneas portfolio company that develops solutions to guarantee safety, efficiency and quality for hospital pharmacies.
Also, he is the Managing Director of the Perlmutter Institute for Global Business Leadership, associated with the International Business School of Brandeis University.
Edvaldo has more than 30 years experience in corporate and investmentbanking, brokerage and asset management. He started his career at Citicorp Investment Bank in São Paulo, Brazil, and subsequently worked for ING Bank in São Paulo and the UK, Banco S.R.L. (later American Express Bank S.A.) in São Paulo, and Santander in São Paulo, Hong Kong and the US. Throughout his career he has conducted business with financial, institutional and corporate clients.
Among his most notable achievements is the management of the Brazilian operations of Santander Asset Management, as well as the corporate banking operations of Banco Santander in the USA, where, in both cases, he generated significant improvement in operational and financial results.
Edvaldo has a Master of International Economic Relations Law degree from the Catholic University of São Paulo, and executive education from the University of São Paulo, Harvard, IESE and INSEAD. He speaks Spanish, Portuguese and English.
Project Manager, Business Development, JETRO New York
Daiki Nakajima is currently Project Manager for JETRO (Japan External Trade Organization) specializing in promoting bilateral investments between US and Japan. His role on the team requires following the market in various industries spanning from energy, IT, finance, agriculture, and many more, both in the US and Japan while assisting Japan expansion strategies for the target industry clients. Most recently, Daiki has been appointed the Japan Desk for the State of Massachusetts, based on a MOU signed between JETRO and the State assisting both inward and outward investments.
Attorney, Murphy & King PC
Jon is an attorney admitted to practice in Paris, New York and Massachusetts, specializing in commercial transactions, M&A and real estate and with a particular emphasis on inbound investment from Europe and Canada. Jon has been engaged in the cross-border sector since 1999, when he joined an international law firm (Salans, now Dentons) in Paris upon graduating from law school. After Paris, Jon worked in New York City, at Skadden and then BNP Paribas. Jon’s varied experience over the years includes negotiating the terms of a JV to construct an ethylene cracker in Qatar, assisting BNP Paribas defend itself before a Congressional committee, counseling a French corporation invest in a major wine distributor in the US, and negotiating entertainment contracts between Hollywood agents and European clients. Jon has been in Boston with Murphy & King since 2009.
Jon is also very active in the local community, as Chair of his town’s zoning board, and participating annually in the Pan-Mass Challenge, a 200 mile cross-Massachusetts bike ride, which raised over $47m for Boston’s Dana Farber Cancer Institute in 2016. Jon is a member of the French American Chamber of Commerce, the New England - Canada Business Council, and the Alliance Francaise of Boston. Jon is a graduate of McGill University and Tulane Law School.
Assistant Secretary for Business Development & International Trade, The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Nam recently joined the Baker/Polito Administration as the Assistant Secretary of Business Development which oversees the Mass. Office of Business Development, Mass. Office of Travel and Tourism, Mass. Film Office and Mass. Office of International Trade & Investment. Previously Nam was the CEO of Vietnamese American Initiative for Development (VietAID).
Nam has been a commercial banker for more than 20 years in both lending and credit for premier community banks and large commercial banks. From 1994 to 2000 Nam served as Commissioner of Massachusetts Office for Refugees and Immigrants, and Deputy Director of the Massachusetts Office of International Trade & Investment.
Nam earned his BS degree in Business Administration from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management, and MPA in Political Economy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.
Chief Innovation Officer, Manulife/John Hancock
Based in Boston, he reports to President and Chief Executive Officer Donald A. Guloien and is a member of the Company’s Executive Committee.
As Chief Innovation Officer, Mr. Ramza provides thought leadership on disruptive trends affecting Manulife’s industry and guides corporate innovation efforts in support of the Company’s vision of helping customers with their biggest financial decisions. This effort involves pursuing new business opportunities by partnering with, investing in, and potentially forming joint ventures with outside entities to accelerate initiatives with the largest potential impact.
He also is chair of Manulife’s Global Innovation Council. The council is focused on ensuring that the Company continues to evolve its culture and core competencies to stay ahead of increasing competitive forces globally. As part of his global oversight responsibilities, Mr. Ramza is responsible for establishing connections across Manulife’s regional operating businesses, where embedded strategy and innovation teams are tasked with exploring and delivering radical improvements to current offerings that meet the Company’s aspiration to develop holistic, long-lasting customer relationships. The teams provide a local understanding of new trends, threats and opportunities.
Before taking on this newly created role in 2015, Mr. Ramza was Senior Vice President, Wealth Management Strategy and Business Development, for John Hancock, Manulife’s U.S. division. He was responsible for extending the Company’s Wealth Management franchise into new markets and expanding wealth management revenue opportunities in the U.S. He provided thought leadership on innovation and technology-driven disruption and strengthened John Hancock’s ties with the start-up community by acquiring and leading investments into exciting new technology companies.
Mr. Ramza joined the Company from Fidelity Investments where he had been Senior Vice President of Enhanced Platform Solutions for Advanced Wealth Ventures, and Senior Vice President of Technology Product Development for Fidelity’s Family Office Services. Before joining Fidelity, Tim held various executive leadership roles at Advent Software.
He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Finance from the University of Texas.
LatAm Solutions Specialist, Santander Bank
Junio Rodrigues is the LatAm Solutions Specialist for Santander Bank in New York since July 2015, responsible for structuring deals with the bank’s corporate clients in the region, especially in Brazil. He has participated in discussions covering a broad range of products, including financing and hedging for local acquisitions, foreign exchange, interest rates and commodities derivatives.
Before transferring to Santander’s New York offices, Rodrigues was for 4 years in the group’s subsidiary in Brazil, always in treasury roles. The last position was in the Structured Derivatives/Solutions team in the São Paulo country headquarters.
Rodrigues began his Financial Markets career with Banco Votorantim in 2007 as a trainee and after a 9-month rotation program was allocated in the Market Making/Pricing Desk, working there for 4 years.
He earned a bachelor's degree in Statistics from the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG) and a MBA in Economics/Financial Markets from the University of São Paulo (USP).
Richard Soo Hoo
Partner, FAS Corporation
Richard Soo Hoo CPA provides tax and accounting services for US, Chinese, and international businesses from Beijing, Shanghai, Toronto, London, India, Middle East, Mexico, South America.
He offers tax planning for immigration applicants - EB-5, student, research, business, technology, real estate businesses.
Targeted tax saving strategies are developed for green card and US residents who pay a lot in taxes. He directs rapid responses to IRS tax notices, tax audits, foreign financial assets compliance, and tax controversies from foreign, federal, state, and local agencies.
Richard Soo Hoo is a Massachusetts Certified Public Accountant (CPA); formerly of PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Texas Instruments, Wang, Dassault; and holds a Harvard BA and Stanford MBA.
President, JFS Energy Advisors
President, New England-Canada Business Council (NECBC)
JFS Energy Advisors is an energy consulting firm focused on customer oriented projects such as pipelines and distribution, utilities, procurement, energy efficiency, sustainability, generation management and development. Recent and current clients include Kinder Morgan, Direct Energy, Swiss Re, BidEnergy, among others. Prior to JFS Energy Advisors, Mr. Sorenson was President/Chief Operating Officer and Managing Partner at Competitive Energy Services from April, 2003 to May 2015 where led a team in procuring and managing more energy load than any third-party entity in Northeast and Atlantic Canada, over two billion dollars in energy spend, growing the firm 5-fold in sales and energy under management.
He is President and a Board Member who is active on the energy committee and serves as Co-chair of the program for the Annual Energy Conference of the New England-Canada Business Council, the most distinguished cross-border energy conference in North America. He served on the Board of Directors for the New Brunswick Natural Gas Association, the Board of Directors for E-Energy, an emerging technology and transactional-based energy technology company in the natural gas industry, and is a member of the Maritimes and Northeast Tolls and Tariff Work Group (M&NP – TTWG).
A graduate of the University of Maine with a degree in economics and finance, Mr. Sorenson served nine (9) years on the Board of Directors of the Alumni Association (UMAA), has served over eleven (11) years on the Board of Advisors for the College of Engineering and has served eleven (11) + years, on the Board for the School of Business, Public Policy, Management and Health, serving three years as Chairman. Sorenson also received the distinguished Presidential Stillwater Society Service Award, for his contributions as an Alumnus and Energy Savings and Energy Management to the University.
Head of SACC Life Tech Advisory Board
Elisabeth Svensson serves as the Head of the Life Tech Advisory Board at the Swedish American Chamber of Commerce, and also leads the chamber's Life Science Series. Elisabeth is a global marketing executive with over 20 years experience in driving highly successful go-to-market strategies for life science companies. She holds extensive experience within domestic/international pharmaceutical and biotech markets. Elisabeth is particularly skilled in product launch and innovation, operations and distribution to cultivate key market relationships, and has been responsible for generating millions of dollars in sales. Elisabeth has formerly held executive roles at Cardinal Health, Pfizer, and AMAG Pharmaceuticals.
Managing Member, Brazil Value Advisor LLC
Stephen Taber graduated in Political Science from George Washington University in 1976 and was awarded a MBA from Thunderbird School of Global Management in 1984. He is founder of BVA LLC, a recently formed advisory firm to assist foreign investors in investing in Brazil. From 2006 to 2009, he was the Brazilian representative of Autonomy Capital Research LLP, a $ 3 billion UK based hedge fund, for which he successfully invested in and managed commercial real estate, residential real estate, structured credits, and private equity. Prior to that he had capital markets and banking experience with ING Barings and the HSBC Group. Stephen Taber was a member for five years of CR2’s board of directors, a public homebuilder in Rio. He is a past board member of MRV, another public homebuilder, and past proxy board member of BrasilAgro. Additionally he was a President of CNR, a mortgage origination company in Brazil. Stephen is both a Brazilian and U.S. citizen.