Baltimore/Washington Advisory Board
Baltimore/Washington Advisory Board
This board consists of insightful business leaders advising Global Chamber® Baltimore/Washington in our efforts to support international trade and businesses in the region.
President and Founder, Adaptive Leadership Strategies
Board Chair, Global Chamber® Baltimore/Washington
Brenda works with organizations to improve business performance by focusing on the development of leadership and professional capabilities. As a Global Mobility and Transition Coach, she offers programs to support the success of international assignments and projects and globally dispersed teams. Brenda is a formally trained Executive Coach (Georgetown University) and certified Global Mindset Inventory facilitator (Thunderbird School of Global Management). Brenda’s professional career includes leadership positions at Mobil Oil and AT&T. She is the former Executive Vice President of a Washington, DC area property management firm.
Manager of International Trade, Economic Development, SME Export, Public Policy, Biz Dev at Virginia SBDC
Aaron Miller is the International Trade Manager for the Virginia Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) at George Mason University. In this role he works with SME’s to help them increase sales, break into new markets, comply with U.S. export regulations, and build or augment their export competencies. He leads a multidisciplinary team of 8 undergraduate and graduate students at Mason selected for their academic achievements and real-world experience. This market research team works on consulting projects for internationalizing Virginia firms as well as global firms establishing a presence in Virginia. Aaron was elected Vice Chairman of the Virginia/DC District Export Council, a group of business leaders appointed by various U.S. Secretaries of Commerce to serve as a source of professional advice for their region’s local firms. Aaron is passionate about creating positive social change and is honored to serve as one of two George Mason University designated Ashoka Changemaker campus leaders, mentoring and teaching young people the entrepreneurial and problem-solving skillsets needed to create solutions that drive social impact and make the world a better place.
CEO, Leadership Consultant, Thought Leader and Consultant at Toyama & Co
Award-winning international speaker Claudio Toyama is the CEO of Toyama&Co., an International leadership consultancy specializing in building sustainable peak performance cultures. He has delivered projects in 113 countries, has travelled to over 40 of them and has lived in 5 different countries on four continents. Claudio's ability to create paradigm shifts in corporate culture results in more thoughtful leadership, a staff of brand ambassadors and customers who feel the difference and embrace it.
Director of Partnership Accounts at Strategy First
Demba is Founder and Director, Strategy First LLC (www.strategyfirst.org), a Multi-line Insurance & Financial Services Consulting, in the provision of insurance & financial services, strategy and advisory services to individuals, community groups and companies in various sector. Headquartered in Washington DC and Virginia, Main accountabilities include: Consultative Marketing Services, Community Resilience and Adaptation strategies, Economic and financial literacy model design and integration, Donor strategy and funding development and Diaspora involvement through ownership advocacy and ethnic buy-in. Demba is also a Global Advisor for Global Chamber in Senegal.
International Trade Manager at Virginia Economic Development Partnership
Ellen is an International Trade Manager for VEDP’s Northern Virginia office, where her mission is to assist companies with increasing their sales revenue through exporting.
Ellen’s career and education has focused on international sales, business development and marketing. She has lived, worked and/or studied in Germany, France, Australia and Brazil, in addition to successfully completing projects involving China, Egypt, Chile, England and Canada. Ellen has an M.B.A. in marketing and international business from Wright State University and a B.S. in marketing and French from Miami University.
For five years prior to joining VEDP, Ellen ran Starting Gate Global, an outsourced business development company that increased sales for international companies entering the U.S. market. Prior to that, she lived in Australia for three years and launched a Microsoft/ Australian Capital Territory-funded information technology (IT) initiative called Canberra.NET. She has also worked in the exporting departments of two manufacturers, Krauss Metalworks and Sonax, located in Germany, as well as for IBM and NCR.
Managing Director at WCC International
As Managing Director at WCC International, Elshan runs a team of experts in import-export management helps businesses conduct cross-border trade and help them move goods, services, processing/packaging equipment and intermediate materials across international borders of the United States. Elshan holds a degree in International Commercial Law form the University of California Davis School of Law.
CEO at EBROSSO Consulting
Jainaba Ceesay is a 16-year accomplished banking and financial professional with track record of leadership, management, retail, commercial lending and business development success in the banking industry with strong oral communication and interpersonal skills. Jainaba is an enthusiastic and positive problem-solver with the ability to make sound decisions and manage individuals and teams in a competitive sales and value-driven organization and have been awarded and recognized for outstanding performances. She is very Self-motivated, organized contributor able to multi-task and work independently while contributing to a team effort. She is skilled at developing and maintaining mutually profitable relationships within a diverse and complex clients’ portfolio. Jainaba is a graduate of Executive MBA at the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland.
Director at International SOS
Jake is the Director of the Engineering, Procurement and Infrastructure industry vertical at International SOS, responsible for business development and client management for EPC firms based in the US, as well as new business development within the state of Maryland. In this role, Jake focuses on helping international organizations meet their duty of care obligations to their employees by advising on travel risk mitigation programs. Jake also focuses on medical staffing solutions for remote/industrial site operations where access to international standards of healthcare and emergency medical services is critical to employee wellbeing and business continuity. Jake also works closely with the International SOS Government Services division supporting government projects globally. Jake has worked in International SOS’ London, Dubai, Kazakhstan and Houston offices and traveled to more than 20 countries during his tenure with the company.
Acting Director for the Office of Int'l Investment & Trade at Maryland Dept. of Commerce
Jessica Reynolds is the Acting Director for the Office of International Investment and Trade at the Maryland Department of Commerce. She previously served as a regional manager in this office, covering South Asia, Middle East, Africa, and Europe. Prior to joining Commerce, Mrs. Reynolds worked as a consultant for an economic development and planning firm, and as a Senior Manager and consultant in the international economic development field, working on US Government, World Bank, and other international donor projects. She started her international career as an intern at the World Trade Center Institute in Baltimore. Mrs. Reynolds holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Maryland, College Park, and a Bachelor’s Degree from Loyola University Maryland.
Dr. Jorge Ribas
President & CEO at Mid-Atlantic Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
Jorge is the founder, president and CEO of the Mid-Atlantic Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Dr. Ribas is a dynamic executive who is known for his "can-do" approach based upon results-oriented organizational and interpersonal skills. He has a proven longstanding track record in business and a passion for fast-paced entrepreneurial environments. The Mid-Atlantic Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, headquartered in Washington, DC, leads efforts to unify and strengthen Hispanic and non-Hispanic businesses in the Mid-Atlantic region.
Principal at Export Trade Consultants
Deputy Director at Global Chamber® Baltimore/Washington
Larry works with small and medium sized companies to facilitate their export sales in new global markets. This includes marketing and trade development, analysis of trade barriers and how to overcome such barriers, finding qualified local partners, and developing international trade show programs. His specialties include international marketing and export promotion. Larry is the Deputy Director of the Global Chamber Baltimore/Washington Chapter. Previously he was Director of the Export Expansion Division, Office of Textile and Apparel at the International Trade Administration, part of the U.S. Department of Commerce. He supported U.S. textile and apparel companies expanding in international markets including helping with marketing and logistical support for export related activities.
Senior Manager, Global Marketing at Prometric
Global Advisor at Global Chamber® Baltimore/Washington
LeAnn is a specialist in global business development, global marketing, and international trade. She founded and launched Global Chamber Baltimore/Washington and served as its Executive Director for more than two years. LeAnn helps companies grow their businesses more successfully in the global market, She connects them to resources and advisors, both locally and throughout the robust Global Chamber network of 525 metro areas worldwide, to better navigate global business challenges, She has more than 30 years of combined experience in global business development and international marketing, She has managed international partners on six continents, crafted global marketing strategies and programs for technology companies, facilitated international trade, and launched new products throughout the world.
Director at Radius
As the world continues to evolve into a global economy, I'm proud to be working with the same type of entrepreneurial clients that I've spent my public accounting career supporting as they go global. Radius is the leader in international business software and services that simplifies the management and control of international operations.
After working with clients throughout their life-cycle and being the first female managing partner of a top 50 firm she is keenly aware of a client's perspective and the importance of adding value. Lisa has over 35 years of progressive accounting and finance experience, and extensive knowledge in the government contracting arena through her work with numerous government contractors.
Managing Partner of NextLevel BCS
Michael has had the benefit of being part of numerous business journeys throughout his nearly 30 years as an entrepreneur. He considers the majority of his business endeavors a success, as they were not only profitable, but fun and memorable. With that said, his knowledge today was built from not only his successes, but his ability to look back at mistakes and learn from them. Michael graduated from the University of Maryland with a degree in Electrical Engineering. Prior to his roles in startups, Michael moved from engineering to sales and excelled at Data General Corporation and Convex Computer Corporation in the acquisition of new customer accounts. Convex was his first experience with a private company and he actively participated and enjoyed the ride to a stock exchange. He was a co-founder and VP of Sales of AIB Software, a developer of software tools for C and C++ developers, a co-founder and CEO of LocalEyes, a search engine technology company, and a co-founder and CEO of Cryptonite, a cybersecurity company. Two of the three startups benefited from exits and became part of public companies. Michael is now the managing partner of NextLevelBCS, a consulting firm focused on helping technology companies identify and then accelerate their optimal business model.
Director of Business Development, Strategic Partnerships at Clements Worldwide
Tania has been working in the insurance industry for more than 14 years. Currently, she is a Business Development Manager, with Clements Worldwide in their Partner Solutions Division, focusing on International Sales.