Women in the Economy is the Focus of Baylor University's Hankamer School of Business Sixth Annual Global Business Forum

March 13, 2012

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"Women in the World Economy" will be the topic of the 6th Annual Global Business Forum at Baylor University's Hankamer School of Business March 19 to March 23.

"We will celebrate the successes of women who have entered positions of global influence and will explore the challenges confronted by women in all countries, rich and poor," said Steve Gardner, Ph.D., Herman Brown Professor of Economics and director of Baylor's McBride Center for International Business. "Today, women account for 40 percent of the global labor force and 52 percent of global university enrollment. They serve as heads of state in 13 countries and hold CEO positions in 18 of the Fortune 500. On the other hand, according to the World Bank, practices that exclude women from certain occupations may depress labor productivity in developing countries by as much as 25 percent."

All events will be held on the fifth floor of the Cashion Building on the Baylor campus and are free and open to the public.

Forum keynote speaker will be Barbara Barrett, interim president of the Thunderbird School of Global Management. She has served as U.S. Ambassador to Finland, president of the American Management Association and the International Women's Forum, and also has trained as a fighter pilot and an astronaut. Other speakers include:

Michelle Bachelet, first woman to be elected president of Chile (2006-2010). She is the inaugural under-secretary-general and executive director of U.N. Women, established in 2010 by the U.N. General Assembly. U.N. Women leads, supports and coordinates work on gender equality and the empowerment of women at global, regional and national levels.

Sano Blocker, senior vice president of the Public Affairs department of Energy Future Holdings, a privately held energy company with a portfolio of competitive and regulated energy subsidiaries. TXU Energy, Luminant and Oncor, EFH's primary businesses, serve the high-growth Texas electricity market.

Paula Caldwell St-Onge, consul general of Canada to Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas since 2010. She was minister counselor and senior trade commissioner at the Canadian Embassy in Mexico City from 2008 to 2010 and served as senior trade commissioner at the Consulate General of Canada in Sao Paulo, Brazil from 2005 to 2008.

Amy George, chief ozone officer for BlueAvocado, a firm that distributes lifestyle products with an emphasis on environmental sustainability. George helped create BlueAvocado's triple-bottom line vision, secured early adoption by major retailers including The Container Store, Whole Foods, and Bloomingdales, and defined the company's "One Planet" sustainability charter.

Cecilia Ochoa, president of MFI International Mfg., LLC, headquartered in El Paso, Texas, since 1990. Prior to joining MFI, she was president of Ceci Inc. in El Paso, Texas. She has worked with major companies including Kimberly Clark, Hasbro, Sara Lee and Evenflo in establishing manufacturing operations.

Laura Sherbin, senior vice president and director of research at the Center for Talent Innovation where she heads up CTI's survey research. Sherbin is an economist specializing in work-life issues and gender and also is an adjunct professor at the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University teaching "Women and Globalization."

Chia Stewart, partner in the firm, Table Occasions, which provides tablecloths and other decorations, made in the borderlands on El Paso, for special events. She is also president of the El Paso Pro Musica Guild and is a member of the board of Junior Achievement of the Desert Southwest. An alumna of Baylor University, she majored in entrepreneurship and international business. She also studied at Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Arts Academy in Paris and launched several entrepreneurial ventures.

Michelle Vaca-Senecal, international trade consultant who has experience on the staffs of the U.S. International Trade Commission, the U.S. Trade Representative, and the U.S. Department of Commerce. She also serves as a presenter and mentor for Latinas Learning to Lead in the National Hispana Leadership Institute's annual youth leadership program.

About Baylor University

Baylor University is a private Christian university and a nationally ranked research institution, classified as such with "high research activity" by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The university provides a vibrant campus community for approximately 15,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating university in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 11 nationally recognized academic divisions.

About Hankamer School of Business

Baylor University's Hankamer School of Business provides a rigorous academic experience, consisting of classroom and hands-on learning, guided by Christian commitment and a global perspective. Recognized nationally for several programs, including Entrepreneurship and Accounting, the school offers 24 undergraduate and 13 graduate areas of study. Visit www.baylor.edu/business and follow on Twitter at twitter.com/Baylor_Business.

Media contact: Frank Raczkiewicz, (254) 710-1964

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