How Women Lead, a national group of top executive women advocating equality in life and career, appointed three new members to its board.
The women are Lorraine Akiba, president and CEO of LHA Ventures; Lori Castillo Martinez, executive vice president and chief equality officer of Salesforce; and Shawnte Mitchell, chief legal officer and general counsel for Genomatica.
“I continue to feel both intense pride and complete awe at the remarkable caliber of women executive leaders we enticed to join our leadership team in progressing the ever-important cause of gender equity,” said Julie Castro Abrams, founder and CEO of How Women Lead. “Lorraine Akiba, Lori Castillo Martinez and Shawnte Mitchell are at the top of their game, and I have no doubt our organization will benefit from their deep knowledge, experience and perspective as we work to bring more deserving women into the boardroom, C-suite and the world of venture capital.”
Akiba, who has been at the helm of LHA Ventures for nearly five years, is a senior advisor, board member, attorney and internationally recognized speaker. She serves on the boards of the Hawaii Medical Services Association and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council. She was the first female director for the State of Hawaii Department of Labor and Industrial Relations. She received her bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of California Berkeley and her law degree from the Hastings College of Law at the University of California.
Martinez leads global equality efforts — including equality strategy and programs — for Salesforce, a customer relationship management (CRM) platform that helps businesses with their marketing, sales, commerce, customer service and support. She is also co-chair of the Salesforce’s Racial Equality and Justice Task Force and serves on the board of Rhia Ventures, a nonprofit venture capital firm investing in reproductive healthcare options. She received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of San Francisco.
Mitchell is the chief legal officer and general counsel for biotechnology company Genomatica and previously served as the executive vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary of Zogenix Inc., a publicly traded commercial stage pharmaceutical company that was recently acquired by UCB Inc. She received her bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and her law degree from The George Washington University Law School.
Founded in 2011, How Women Lead is composed of more than 14,000 senior executive women and offers ongoing education, mentorship opportunities and peer relationship networking. The organization has branched out with a philanthropic arm, How Women Give, which provides grants and connections to women’s and girls’ organizations; and an investment arm, How Women Invest, an early-stage venture firm focusing on women-led companies.