IPWS Leadership Summit Speakers

On June 2nd 2017, IPWS is proud to bring you the second annual IPWS Leadership Summit right here in Shanghai. It will be a professional & personal development experience like no other, giving you the chance to participate in innovative workshops, meet & network with China’s top female leaders and influencers, and of course hear from our line-up of high-profile speakers. This year’s speakers will include the inspirational women below, and many more!

Virginia Tan
Keynote Speaker
Co-founder and President, Lean In China

In 2013, Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In encouraged women to “lean in” to their ambitions. Lean In China’s mission is to empower Chinese women to pursue their goals and aspirations. It actively builds communities for women to thrive across China, promoting a culture of mentorship, leadership and mutual support. At present the platform has over 80,000 members across more than 25 cities and 50 universities in China. She also founded the Her Startup competition in 2015, the first global tech entrepreneurship competition for female founders, which held 12 rounds across China, USA and South East Asia. She is also a founding partner of Teja Ventures, an early stage venture capital fund investing in technologies and startups emerging out of the Her Startup competition, to address the funding needs of women entrepreneurs as well as seeking to use technology as a bridge to build deeper ties between East and West as well as encourage social innovation in China.

Virginia’s background is in law and finance, where she was an experienced finance lawyer for more than 8 years specialising on strategic investment in the energy, resources and infrastructure sectors in emerging and frontier markets, and has worked in Europe, Middle East, Asia, Africa and South America representing governments, large corporates and financial institutions for 2 magic circle firms. She moved to Beijing to work on investments related to the “One Belt One Road” initiative representing Chinese state owned companies and banks. She is deeply passionate about using capital and expertise from the private sector as a tool for facilitating sustainable development in developing countries. She has extensive experience advising pro bono NGOs and charities on social financing and commercial issues.

Virginia is also a World Economic Forum Global Shaper.

Wenchi Yu
Asia Pacific Head of Corporate Engagement, Goldman Sachs

Wenchi Yu is Goldman Sachs’ Asia Pacific Head for Corporate Engagement, leading the firm’s strategic philanthropy and social investment in the region. Immediately before Goldman Sachs, she started a business connecting investors and social entrepreneurs between Asia and the United States. Previously, she worked in the U.S. Department of State and the US Congress. She serves as an advisor to a number of nonprofit organizations and is a fellow of Asia Society.

Wenchi has written extensively on political economy and society in Asia for the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Council on Foreign Relations, Caixin, and other international media outlets.

R May Lee
Dean, School of Entrepreneurship and Management, ShanghaiTech University

May is widely regarded as an expert on innovation gained through her experience as a business leader, an entrepreneur and educator in the U.S. and China. Over the last 25 years, May has held senior positions at organizations, such as Goldman, Sachs, Merrill Lynch, NYU, and ShanghaiTech, enabling her to thrive in environments that require strategic, operational and entrepreneurial skills. She speaks regularly about education, leadership, and innovation, and consults with corporations on these topics. Recently, the World Economic Forum invited May to serve on the Global Future Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

May is currently Dean of the School of Entrepreneurship and Management at ShanghaiTech University, a new university created by the Shanghai Government. As the inaugural Dean of the School of Entrepreneurship and Management at ShanghaiTech University, May is creating a 21st century business school that connects creativity and innovation to business and science.

May is also a Lifetime Trustee at the NYU School of Law, and sits on the Board of Directors for the National Partnership for Women and Families and the Chelsea Day School in New York.

Lorna Doucet
Associate Professor, Business Administration, Fudan University

Dr. Doucet received her Ph.D. and M.A. degree in management from Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. She was most recently an Associate Professor of Management at CEIBS, and Visiting Assistant Professor of Management at Wharton School. She has over twenty years’ experience teaching MBA, Executive Education and PhD courses in USA, Europe and China.
 Dr. Doucet’s teaching and research focus on organizational behavior and leadership – with a specific focus on emotions and culture. She has published multiple case studies and scholarly articles in top tier academic journals. Dr. Doucet is also a founding member of TEDxShanghaiWomen. Prior to receiving her Ph.D., Dr. Doucet worked for Labatt Brewing Company as Assistant Brewmaster, Assistant Manager for Experimental Brewery and Management Trainee. Dr. Doucet received her B.Sc. degree in Chemical Engineering, summa cum laude, from University of Ottawa.

Heini Shi
Professor of Practice in Management – NYU Shanghai

Heini is a Professor of Practice in Management at NYU Shanghai. Dr. Shi has global policy and business experience in over 40 countries where she directed complex project implementation, created public-private partnerships, and advised market expansion strategies. Heini has developed leadership programs and taught at leading business schools in Europe, China, and the United States.

Prior to employment in China, Heini worked in Europe and the United States as program leader at the World Bank, United Nations Conference of Trade and Development (UNCTAD), and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), where she designed and managed economic policy and social development projects. She was also a legal advisor to the multinational law firm Allen & Overy, consulting with European firms on their Chinese investments.

Heini is a graduate of the Advanced Management Program of IE Business School and is a graduate of the University of Turin, Italy. She also holds a Ph.D. in International Economic Law from Bocconi University and speaks Chinese, Italian, English, and French.

Gianluca Pettiti
President, Greater China, Thermo Fisher Scientific (China)

Gianluca is a senior executive with a broad international experience he acquired living and working abroad for the last ten years, across three different continents. Since 2006 he is in a journey to help fostering innovation in the Life Science space, serving today as China President at Thermo Fisher Scientific. Thermo Fisher Scientific is the world leader in serving science, with revenues of $17 billion and 50,000 employees in 50 countries. Our mission is to enable our customers to make the world healthier, cleaner and safer. Gianluca holds a Master of Science in Engineering from Politecnico di Torino. He started his career at General Electric. He joined Applied Biosystems in 2006. In 2008 after the Life Technologies acquisition he led the EMEA finance organization. He moved to Brasil in 2010 as Vice President and General Manager of the Latin America region. Gianluca lives in China since 2013, he became President of Thermo Fisher Scientific in 2015. Since 2013 Gianluca serves as Chairman of the Life DaAn Joint venture, focused in developing Molecular Diagnostic tests in China. He is also part of the Health and Healthcare council at the world economic forum.

Erin McGinley
Stand-up Comedian, Head of Language Department at Shanghai Experimental Foreign Language School

Born in Canada and raised in Athens, Georgia, Erin moved to Shanghai in 2009, with just a college diploma and $1000 in her pocket. Since then, she has held various positions in the education world, from administration to instruction, and she received Massachusetts teacher licensure in 2012. She is currently the head of the English department at Shanghai Experimental Foreign Language School in Yangpu district. Erin also frequently works as a college applications consultant, helping high schoolers achieve their dreams of getting into American universities.

Erin devotes a large portion of her time to writing and performing comedy, both standup and teleplays. She believes that the role of women in comedy is at the crucial point these days, and that comedy is a great uniter of people. Erin has written two sitcom pilots this year, one of which is currently in the running for consideration in this year’s Sundance Episodic Storytelling lab. She has also headlined at Shanghai Comedy Club and thanks them for their efforts to foster the women in the Shanghai standup comedy scene. In 2015, Erin delivered a TEDx talk in The Mixing Room of Mercedes-Benz Arena entitled “How Embracing Chaos Might Bring You a Hollywood Ending.” Erin lives in The Former French Concession with her five year old son Felix, who she credits as being her biggest inspiration.

Erin holds bachelors degrees in Philosophy and Comparative Literature form The University of Georgia, and a graduate certificate in television writing from the UCLA Extension Writers’ Program.

Elva Yao
Managing Director of Zmack

Elva has been studying, coaching, and performing improvisational theater for over 5 years.  Elva is adept at using the Zmack ‘Seven principles’ of improvisation to create fan-favorite entertaining shows with her Chinese team ZHiMaKong and her English team SPEAK Up! Elva is also the creator of  the Chinese language improv curriculum for the Zmack Improv Training Center, where people from across Shanghai study the art of improv.  Elva is also highly sought after for her bilingual Applied Improvisation coaching, training, and facilitation through ZmackWorks Consulting. Elva has traveled the world sharing improv, including Hong Kong, Manila, Bangkok, Oshkosh and Chicago.  Elva can also be seen regularly in theatrical productions such as 2015’s HAMLET, and performs stand-up comedy and storytelling in both English and Chinese.

The power of improvisation goes beyond the stage, and ZmackWorks Consulting is China’s ONLY recognized Applied Improvisaton Training, Facilitation, and Coaching organization. Clients such as Bayer, Louis Vuitton, Volvo, Decathlon, Microsoft, and Kaixin Mahua seek ZmackWorks’ unique blend of Applied Improvisation techniques and traditional facilitation skills for Presentation Skills, Teambuilding, Innovation and Creativity, Executive Leadership, and Communications skills training. ZmackWorks also uses the philosophy of Applied Improvisation in one-on-one Executive and Life Coaching.

Zmack Improv Theater Company is recognized around the world as a leader in Improvisational Theater, with performances in cities in and around China and Asia, and regular tours and partnerships with US based improv theater companies, including the iO Theater, the Annoyance Theater, the Second City, and the Improv department of Stanford University.

ZMACK – Life is better when improvised!

SUSI and CAICAI are both graphic designers, illustrators and community creators. They will be capturing the IPWS Leadership Summit powered by IE Business in a visual & documenting style to help us further explore the theme: Understanding Power & Leadership: A Roadmap to Success.


Amelia Chappelow – MC

Amelia Chappelow is an International Media Consultant, Radio & Film Producer and IPWS Board Member. She is known as a content manager “dynamo”​, with over 13 years of media experience & leadership at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, where she held a fantastic reputation for commitment to audience, through strategy development and research. She led National Radio Program Teams, organised large-scale Live Music & Comedy Events and worked with all nature of Celebrities & Media Personalities from all over the world.

Since moving to Shanghai in late 2014, Amelia continues to create & consults regularly on media creation for small to large scale companies through presentations & workshops. She’s joined the Shanghai International Comedy Festival forum, and judged both years of the China International Comedy Festival, and hosted blogging workshops as part of the Shanghai International Lit Fest at M on the Bund. In 2016, her major project included starting a film documentary for Australian audiences, which continues this year. Over summer, Amelia plans a radio podcast called ‘Another China’ showcasing the unexpected talents of Shanghai people. An IPWS Board Member since January 2016, Amelia is an enthusiastic, positive and vibrant member of the community and is passionate about connecting professional women.


Title Sponsor

Award Sponsor

Platinum Sponsors

Gold Sponsor

Silver Sponsors

Media Partners