San Francisco Bay Area Leaders Extend Support for Women’s Higher Education in Asia and the Middle East

SAN FRANCISCO, UNITED STATES - Media OutReach - 3 December 2020 - Corporate
leaders from Salesforce, Google, PayPal, VISA, BlackRock, Cisco, Adobe, Horizon
Therapeutics, KPMG and others, all serving in their personal capacity, have
volunteered to come together to support the work of the Asian University for
Women (AUW) located in Chittagong, Bangladesh.


The AUW Bay Area Advisory Board is
entrusted with raising awareness of the urgent need to enhance opportunities
for women's higher education and leadership development; facilitating
partnerships between Bay Area universities and companies and AUW to improve
teaching and learning at the University; and fundraising for student scholarships
and other needs at the University from individuals, philanthropies, and
businesses. It is part of a global network of Advisory Boards that support AUW,
including in Tokyo, Hong Kong, the United Kingdom, and Singapore.


Ritu Bhargava, the Chair
of the AUW Bay Area Advisory Board

Ritu Bhargava, a Senior Vice President at
Salesforce, Chairs the Advisory Board.  "I
went to an all-women's college in India," said Bhargava. "I was inspired and learned
that a woman can dream of the unimaginable and achieve it.  I want to let the young women of AUW know
that it is possible for them, too. And I want to help them get there."
Bhargava, who is the head of Engineering for Sales Cloud, is also mentoring a
current student at AUW.  This mentorship
relationship is one of the core responsibilities of all Bay Area Advisory Board

Stacey Taylor, the Chair
of Events & Advocacy Committee

Another Advisory Board member, Stacey
Taylor, a Vice President at VISA, commented, "I'm excited to be a part of AUW,
supporting women to advance their education and careers.  I have taken to heart the wisdom that Gail
Evans shared in her book, She Wins, You Win, and believe that if we help
women succeed through AUW, we are opening doors to women everywhere to make a
bigger contribution on the world." Taylor leads the Bay Area Advisory Board as
Chair of its Events & Advocacy Committee.



Srini Ramanathan, the Chair of the
Partnership Committee


Alex Craddock, the Co-Chair
of the Scholarship Support Committee

Marcy Campbell, the Co-Chair
of the Scholarship Support Committee


The Advisory Board is organized into three
committees: a Partnerships Committee, chaired by Dr. Srini Ramanathan, Group
Vice President of Development Sciences at Horizon Therapeutics; an Events &
Advocacy Committee, chaired by Stacey Taylor; and a Scholarship Support Committee,
co-chaired by Marcy Campbell, Vice President of Sales for the North American
and Australian Markets at PayPal and Alexander Craddock, Managing
Director and Chief Marketing Officer, iShares, BlackRock.


The Advisory Board has been meeting
regularly since it came together in early September and is currently hosting a
week-long virtual film festival called, HERSTORY: Women's Empowerment
Through Her Lens.
The film festival will showcase a number of films
directed and produced by prominent South Asian women. It will be accompanied by
an exclusive director's panel featuring acclaimed film directors Smriti Mundhra,
Alka Raghuram, Alankrita Shrivastava, and others; and a live discussion featuring
AUW student Nazifa Rafa; and Dr. Tiffany Cone, an AUW faculty member,
anthropologist, and filmmaker. The event aims to raise $100,000 for student
scholarships to AUW.


The Chancellor of Asian University for
Women, Cherie Blair, a prominent human rights lawyer and wife of the former British
Prime Minister Tony Blair, attended an initial Advisory Board meeting. "What
impressed me most about the Bay Area Advisory Board," she commented, "was the
creativity, energy, and deep concern among all of its members for the issues
that AUW addresses on the ground in educating and empowering women."


"On my many visits to AUW's campus, I had
palpably felt the inspiration and optimism shared by AUW students. At this time
of the global pandemic, it is heartening to see others also similarly inspired
and helping sustain our mission in such a positive and constructive manner.
These women and men who have come together to make a positive impact for
changing the lives of women are also our heroes," she added.


AUW Bay Area Advisory Board is composed of the following individuals:


, Senior Vice President,
Salesforce (Board

Srini Ramanathan,
Group Vice President of Development
Sciences, Horizon Therapeutics (Chair,
Partnerships Committee)

, Vice
President, Systems Strategy and Operational Excellence, VISA (Chair, Events & Advocacy

, Managing
Director and Chief Marketing Officer, iShares, BlackRock (Co-Chair, Scholarship Support

Marcy Campbell, Vice President, Sales for the North American and
Australian Markets, PayPal (Co-Chair, Scholarship Support Committee)

Shomit Ghose, Partner, ONSET Ventures

Brian Greenen, Independent Consultant; Former Vice President,
North American Sales, Oracle

Dave Kleidermacher, Vice President of Engineering for Android Security
& Privacy, Google

Grace Kloba, Senior Engineering Director for Android, Google

Purnima Kochikar, Vice President of Business Development, Google Play

Raj Krishna, Vice President of Strategy & Planning, the
Cloud Networking Group, Cisco

Simon Longbottom, Vice President, Creative Cloud and Document Cloud,

Ariel Spivak, Managing Director, Auto, TV, and IoT
Partnerships, Google

Vijay Subramanyam, Managing Director, Transformation Delivery, KPMG

About Asian University for Women (AUW):

Founded in 2008
and located in Chittagong, Bangladesh, AUW is the first of its kind: a regional
institution dedicated to women's education and leadership development through
liberal arts and sciences education.  It
is international in outlook but rooted in the contexts and aspirations of the
people of Asia. Chartered by the Parliament of Bangladesh, AUW exists solely to
support a rising network of women leaders, entrepreneurs, and changemakers from
across the region. It seeks out women who show significant academic achievement
and potential, demonstrate courage and a sense of outrage at injustice, and are
empathic to the woes of other people.


900 students
from 18 countries currently attend AUW: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan,
Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan,
Palestine, Senegal, Sri Lanka, Syria, Timor Leste, Vietnam, and Yemen. More
than 85% of AUW students are on full or near-full scholarships funded by
supporters from around the world. The University has graduated over a thousand
students to date. A majority of AUW graduates secure employment in the private
and public sectors in their home countries while about 25% go on to pursue
graduate studies at other institutions of higher learning including Oxford,
Cambridge, Johns Hopkins, Stanford, Columbia, Duke, Brandeis and Tufts, among
others. To learn more about Asian University for Women, please visit


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