Speaker Bios

Joseph Barragan ('79)

Managing Director, Strategic Financing Advisors LLC.; Former Managing Director, JP Morgan Chase

Joseph M. Barragan is a Los Angeles native and a UCLA alumnus. He has over 35 years' experience in international banking with J.P. Morgan Chase in numerous senior roles dealing with corporations, financial institutions, sovereigns and high-net-worth individuals. He has served on several boards of private companies, an international school and industry associations. Barragan joined Chemical Bank, a predecessor institution to J.P. Morgan Chase, upon graduating from UCLA Anderson. He held various international assignments and executive positions within the firm, including responsibility across Europe, Asia and Latin America. He retired from the firm in 2015 and established Strategic Financing Advisors LLC to develop peer-to-peer lending within the ultra-high-net-worth market and to assist single and multi-family offices structure the complex financing needs of their multi-jurisdictional clients.

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Karla Berman

Lead, Ad Sales; Former Head of Branding Solutions for Spanish LATAM, Google Inc. Mexico  

Karla Berman leads the Food & Beverage Ad Sales Vertical for Google Mexico. Previously, she was responsible for Branding Solutions for Spanish LATAM for 3 years, where she led the team responsible for developing the go to market strategy for Google's Branding Solutions, including YouTube Ad Products.

Before joining Google she was in charge of the digital businesses of Grupo Expansión, a wholly own subsidiary of Time Inc. in Mexico. There, she launched and led most of their digital products including 2 joint ventures with CNN: CNNMéxico.com and CNNExpansión.com. Her role was critical in the digital transformation of the company.

Berman was a Business Analyst for McKinsey & Co. and worked as a reporter in Reforma, the most important newspaper in Mexico City. She graduated with excellence from Universidad Iberoamericana, where she got a degree in Industrial Engineering and she holds an MBA from Harvard Business School. Ms. Berman lives with her 4 daughters and husband in Mexico City.

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Jacopo Bracco ('99)

Former President, DIRECTV PanAmericana

Jacopo Bracco is the former president of DIRECTV PanAmericana. In this role, he oversaw all aspects of the operation providing DIRECTV service in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Puerto Rico, Uruguay, Venezuela, and the Caribbean. After joining DIRECTV in 2004, Bracco successfully led PanAmericana's growth trajectory to become the largest division of DIRECTV Latin America with 8 million subscribers and more than 12,000 employees. Under his leadership, DIRECTV PanAmericana has increased its Market Share from 12 to 28 percent and has experienced a 22 percent compounded growth rate. The division reported US $3.1bn in revenues in 2013. Following the company's emergence from Chapter-11 reorganization in 2004, Bracco successfully led the operation's restructure guided by his vision of an organizational culture driven by innovation, collaboration and delivering results. As a consequence, DIRECTV PanAmericana has been at the vanguard of the Pay-TV market, known for bringing HD and DVRs to the region; offering a pre-paid product that has captured a fast-growing fan base in the mass market; and delivering industry-leading sports content and products, such as the broadest coverage of Europe's soccer leagues and an unmatched World Cup viewing experience.

Prior to joining DIRECTV PanAmericana, Bracco was Vice President of TV Platforms at News Corporation, where he oversaw corporate investments in the pay-TV market. He holds an MBA from UCLA Anderson and an Engineering degree from the Università Politecnico di Milano, Italy. Bracco served as co-chairman of the board at WIN Sports in Colombia, and as director on the board of Sky Mexico and TyC in Argentina.

 

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Susana Cam 

Vice President, International Banking and Structured Trade Finance, City National Bank

Susana Cam is a senior trade finance banker at City National Bank responsible for structuring solutions for small and middle-market companies engaged in import and export activities. Through her extensive knowledge of trade and receivable financing tools, she helps City National clients pursue growth while managing risks associated with conducting business in foreign markets. In addition, Cam manages City National Bank's correspondent banking relationships in Latin America.

Before joining City National Bank, Cam was for 2.5 years with Silicon Valley Bank in San Francisco, where she held similar responsibilities. She also spent two years with GE Capital in the energy financial services division, where she underwrote and managed a global portfolio with projects in Spain and India. Cam began her career in banking as an analyst at HSBC in New York. A native of Lima, Peru, she earned her bachelor's degree in business administration from University of Hawaii and a master's in international finance from Columbia University in New York.

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Claudio Chamorro ('02)

Chief Financial Officer, Parque Arauco S.A., Chile

Claudio Chamorro is the Chief Financial Officer of Parque Arauco S.A, a developer and operator of multi-format commercial real estate assets, mainly shopping centers, orientated toward differentiated socio-economic sectors in Chile, Peru and Colombia. Prior to joining Parque Arauco, he served as Development Corporate Manager at Corp Group, a Chilean holding company where he led the acquisition of hotels, shopping centers and banks. Previously, Chamorro was the CFO and market risk manager at Corpbanca. He has also worked as an advisor to the Ministry of Planning, now known as the Ministry of Social Development. He is a former board member of Corpbanca Venezuela and Combanc. Chamorro received his B.A. in Economics from Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile where he also teaches and an MBA from UCLA Anderson.

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Sebastian Edwards

Henry Ford II Chair in International Management, UCLA Anderson

From 1993 until April 1996, Sebastian Edwards was the Chief Economist for the Latin America and Caribbean Region of the World Bank. He is a research associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), a member of the advisory board of Transnational Research Corporation and co-chairman of the Inter American Seminar on Economics (IASE). He is the Past-President of the Latin American and Caribbean Economic Association (LACEA), an international professional association of economists with academic interests in Latin America and the Caribbean region. He is a member of the Scientific Advisory Council of the Kiel Institute of World Economics, Kiel-Germany. In September 2004, Professor Edwards was appointed to California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's Council of Economic Advisors.

  Edwards has been a columnist for the Wall Street Journal, and is the author of more that 200 scientific articles on international economics, macroeconomics and economic development. His articles have appeared in The American Economic Review, The Journal of Monetary Economics, The Economic Journal, Oxford Economic Papers, The Journal of Development Economics, The Quarterly Journal of Economics, the Journal of Economic Perspectives and other professional journals. His work and views are frequently quoted in the media, including the New York Times, the Financial Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Wall Street Journal and the Economist.   Edwards is an associate editor of The World Economy, the Journal of International Trade and Economic Development, the Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, and Analisis Economico. For almost ten years he was the co-editor of the Journal of Development Economics. Edwards has been a consultant to a number of multilateral institutions, including the Inter-American Development Bank, the World Bank, the IMF, and the OECD. He has also been a consultant to the United States Agency for International Development, and to a number of national and international corporations. He has worked in Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Egypt, Guatemala, Honduras, Indonesia, Korea, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Tanzania and Venezuela. He has also consulted for a number of international financial institutions and multinational firms. Edwards was born in Santiago, Chile. He was educated at the Catholic University of Chile, and received an M.A. and Ph.D. in economics from the University of Chicago.

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Tom Georgis ('98)

Senior Vice President, Development, SolarReserve

Tom Georgis is SolarReserve's Senior Vice President of Development, responsible for driving SolarReserve's continued growth through initiating and developing projects and business opportunities across the US, Latin America, Asia and Australia.  His efforts have resulted in the development of a portfolio of 800 megawatts (MW) of concentrating solar power (CSP) projects in Chile, a 1,500 MW portfolio of both CSP and PV in the United States, and 300 MW of solar projects in Central America. Georgis led the development and financing of SolarReserve's flagship Crescent Dunes 110MW project in Nevada, the world's first utility scale CSP project with integrated molten salt energy storage. Georgis was instrumental in the opening of SolarReserve's offices in Chile and Australia to serve these rapidly expanding regional markets, and is in the process of advancing strategic partnerships that will facilitate the deployment of the company's advanced technology in China.

Georgis has more than 27 years of development and operational experience in the energy, technology, and government service sectors. He has held several senior management positions and his diverse expertise includes structuring transactions for energy and infrastructure projects, leading all aspects of energy project acquisition and managing greenfield project development.  Georgis joined SolarReserve from GlobalTec Solutions, a privately-held technology company, where he was Managing Director of International and oversaw all aspects of the company's international expansion. Georgis was also Principal and Managing Director at Exodus Energy LLC, a Houston-based privately held power and natural gas firm. While at Exodus, he focused on the development and acquisition of energy assets and acted as lead developer on several multi-million dollar innovative technology energy facilities. These facilities included natural gas storage, offshore LNG regasification and petroleum coke gasification. Prior to joining Exodus, he was a manager at Enron Corporation where he developed and structured energy asset projects internationally.

Georgis earned his Masters of Business Administration from the Anderson School at the University of California Los Angeles. Georgis also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Studies from Northwestern University. Georgis served nine years as a Naval Special Warfare Officer in the United States Navy. He also serves on the board of the Price Center for Entrepreneurial Studies at the UCLA Anderson School of Management.

 

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Kevin Klowden

Executive Director, California Center and Managing Economist, the Milken Institute

Kevin Klowden is the executive director of the Milken Institute's California Center and a managing economist at the Institute. He specializes in the study of demographic and spatial factors (the distribution of resources, business locations, and movement of labor) and how these are influenced by public policy and in turn affect regional economies. His key areas of focus include technology-based development, infrastructure, the global economy, media and entertainment.

Klowden was the lead author of "Strategies for Expanding California's Exports," which focused on the vital role trade and exports play in the state economy and its underperformance relative to the country over the past decade. He has also written on the role of transportation infrastructure in economic growth and job creation in reports such as "California's Highway Infrastructure: Traffic's Looming Cost" and "Jobs for America: Investments and Policies for Economic Growth and Competitiveness," as well as in publications including The Wall Street Journal.

He has addressed the role of technology-based development in publications such as the "2014 State Technology and Science Index," "North America's High-Tech Economy" and location-specific studies on Arkansas and Arizona. In addition, Klowden was the lead author of several studies on the economics of the entertainment industry, including "A Hollywood Exit: What California Must Do to Remain Competitive in Entertainment-and Keep Jobs, "Fighting Production Flight: Improving California's Filmed Entertainment Tax Credit Program, "Film Flight: Lost Production and Its Economic Impact in California" and "The Writers' Strike of 2007-2008: The Economic Impact of Digital Distribution," each of which analyzes the changing dynamics of the entertainment industry.

Additionally, he coordinated the Milken Institute's two-year Los Angeles Economy Project, seeking public-policy and private-sector solutions to challenges the region faces amid a growing unskilled labor pool. Klowden is a frequent speaker on state fiscal issues and has served on multiple advisory boards on business growth, economic development and infrastructure. He holds graduate degrees from the University of Chicago and London School of Economics.

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Keith Kratzberg ('92)

Senior Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Epson America Inc.

As senior vice president of sales and marketing at Epson America, Inc., Keith Kratzberg is responsible for Epson's full portfolio of technology solutions in North and Latin America.  He is charged with driving Epson's innovation and market leadership in imaging, wearables and factory automation in such key markets as consumer, SMB, online, corporate, retail point of sale, education, professional graphics, manufacturing and textiles.  Since joining Epson in 1995, Kratzberg has held increasingly responsible positions in product development, marketing, sales, strategy and general management.  Prior to that, Kratzberg was director of the printer enhancements business unit at Pacific Data Products, Inc., San Diego, California.

Kratzberg received a master's degree in business administration from the Anderson Graduate School of Management, UCLA.  He graduated from the University of California, San Diego, with a bachelor of science degree in applied mechanics.

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Jim MacLellan

Director of Trade Development, Port of Los Angeles

Jim MacLellan is responsible for trade promotion programs to encourage increased trade through the Port of Los Angeles and the Southern California Gateway. This includes the Trade Connect programs to assist local businesses enter global export markets. Trade Connect was awarded the Presidential E Star Award on May 20, 2013 for service to the nation's exports. On November 7, 2013, Trade Connect received the City of Los Angeles Quality & Productivity Award. MacLellan has held this position since January 2007, and previously was Director of Marketing, at which time he coordinated activities of the Port's ten international offices and worked with customers and service providers to help build the Port's long-term clientele.

Prior to joining the Port of Los Angeles in 1992, MacLellan spent more than 20 years working internationally in the maritime and intermodal shipping business. As Adjunct Professor, he teaches an annual course on international shipping at the Monterey Institute Graduate School of Business Studies.  A member of several local and international organizations, MacLellan currently serves as Chair of the Pacific Chapter of the United States - Mexico Chamber of Commerce, Chair of the L.A. Regional Export Council (MEI) and Member of the Southern California District Export Council.

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Mark Neeleman 

Entrepreneur; Co-Founder, Azul Airlines; CEO Bamazon Technologies Brazil SSA

Mark Neeleman was born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah. In 1993 he began his entrepreneurial career when he moved to Mountain View, California and co-founded "Everything Fresh" in 1996, which catered to the top Silicon Valley companies, giving Mark a unique opportunity to "break bread" with Silicon Valley's best and brightest during that community's exciting growth period. In 2004, after graduation from University of Utah, Neeleman accepted a position at HealthEquity, a company that revolutionized the insurance industry. At HealthEquity he was responsible for building media relationships and promoting awareness of health savings accounts. During this time, he honed his natural public and media relations skills, successfully obtaining mass media coverage for HealthEquity in The Wall Street Journal, CNBC, USA Today, and many others.

In 2008, eager to move his career to the international frontier, Neeleman relocated to Brazil to cofound Azul Airlines with his brother David Neeleman. From its inception to present, Azul has become Brazil's 3rd largest airline and is one of Brazil's fastest growing Companies, transporting 2 million passengers per month, and boasting a 2013 annual revenue of $ USD 1.5 Billion. In 2010, Neeleman launched 'Jumpstart', a door-to-door sales company focused on bringing monitoring technologies to the Brazilian middle class to provide maximum security. He served as CEO and President of Jumpstart, which changed its name to Vigzul in 2013. Today Neeleman is the second largest shareholder of Vigzul, which is now a $ USD 240 Million company, and serves on the Board of Directors. In 2012, Mark co-founded called TIB-This is Brazil. The mission of TIB is to simplify the process for American companies to expand their cutting edge technology, goods and services to Brazil. Mark serves as President of TIB, which brings him face to face with CEO's of diverse companies wanting to take advantage of Brazil's growing population and appetite for "all things American".   

By 2013 Mark's love of Brazil brought his attention of the plight of the Amazon Rainforest, which in turn led him to connect with the power of bamboo. He's decided to dedicate his time and energy to stopping deforestation of the Rainforest by developing bamboo as a mainstream viable wood alternative, relieving the pressure on Brazil's precious forest resources which causes by illegal logging. Forming Mark J. Neeleman International Ltda this year, Neeleman intends to combine his substantial network of social and political connections to develop a supply chain and local demand for an untapped resource-integrating the bamboo industry in Brazil to benefit the regions of the Amazon. Neeleman plans to offer structural certified building materials as well as affordable housing derived from tree-free building products and restore the Rainforest canopy with bamboo and other hardwoods via permaculture planting strategies. Starting November 2014, Mark took his place on the Board of Directors of Bamboozar, a division of Banco Florestal, a newly formed Brazilian non-profit institute dedicated to the study and development of bamboo technologies.  

Neeleman, a sought after speaker, is recognised as one of Brazil's successful entrepreneurs. Often called upon by the American Chamber of Commerce and FGV (the Harvard Business School of Brazil) he advocates for innovation "as a lifestyle, not as a concept", demonstrating how the Azul and Vigzul models he pioneered can be successfully applied to a variety of business ideas. The Neelemans are a well-known and respected family in Brazil, for over half a century. Neeleman's parents, Gary and Rose Neeleman, traveled to Brazil 60 years ago as reporters for United Press International and the LA Times, have authored several books on Brazil's history, and now serve as Utah's Honorary Ambassadors to Brazil. Mark James Neeleman, fluent in Portuguese, lives in Santa Catarina, Brazil and travels weekly to São Paulo for business. He is married to Lauren Kelly Neeleman, and the couple has a lively Brazilian-born daughter, Valentina Rose Neeleman. His hobbies include: writing, long boarding the streets of Brazil, Bamboo Hunting with his dog Lola and Valentina and skiing in his beloved Utah mountains.

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Alberto Pecegueiro

CEO, Globosat, Brasil 

Alberto Pecegueiro is the CEO of Globosat, Brasil. He studied journalism at FACHA-RJ and publishing at Stanford University. Pecugueiro was also a trainee at Mondadori Editori in Milan in 1983.  He was director of the magazine division of Editora Globo until 1987 when he left to join Editora Abril. Pecegueiro held many positions at Abril until 1993 when he left as publishing director for all the company's magazines. He joined  NET BRASIL, to create the first Cable MSO in Brazil, in charge of marketing, programming and acquisitions.  In December 1994, Pecegueiro was appointed CEO of Globosat. Globosat had, by then 40.000 subscribers, 4 channels and 350 employees. Currently Globosat has 18 million subscribers, with 40 channels and 1.900 employees. Pecegueiro is an avid all sports fan, for almost everything except baseball and cricket.

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María Sánchez 

Senior Vice President, NBCUniversal International Distribution Latin America

Maria Sánchez is the SVP Liaison, International Distribution Latin America. Reporting to Ken Bettsteller (Managing Director Latin America, UNI & TVD), she relocated to Miami to manage content distribution for LatAm and is currently managing a team of 9 people based in Miami and São Paulo, helping to grow our business across Latin America with a reliable team in place. Since her relocation to Miami, Maria led the negotiations to achieve a new Long Term Deal Pay 1- Window with HBO, and to renew the Long Term Deals with TURNER and Universal Networks International.

Prior to her current role, in October 2011 Sánchez was the Managing Director of NBCUniversal International Television.  Reporting to Belinda Menendez (President, International Television), she managed a team of 40 people based in Madrid, Miami and São Paulo, across the channels and distribution businesses.  She was able to lead, manage and supervise the distribution businesses in Spain, Portugal and LatAm with very successful results until December 2013. Sánchez joined NBCUniversal in January 2004 as VP Liaison, International TV Distribution, Spain and Portugal managing a team of 4 people and a library of over 5,000 titles including Theatrical Films, TV series, TVM's, Miniseries, Animation, Unscripted programs, Sports and News for Pay, Free and Basic. She secured volume deals for Pay and Free in Spain and Portugal, and doubled the revenue generated by these territories. As Director of Sales, Television Distribution, Latin America Sánchez built the Latin team for Alliance Atlantis, which until then had been working through an agent, and substantially increased the revenue generated by the region and established very strong relationships with broadcasters, cable operators and dubbing studios.

Prior to joining NBCUniversal Sánchez was the Managing Director at Alliance Atlantis in the UK, where she lead and managed the European Sales Team of 8 people and was directly responsible for licensing programs to the UK, Ireland, Spain, Portugal and Italy. With a library of around 2,000 titles including Independent Feature Films, TV Series, TVM's and Miniseries, and Children programming including the CSI franchise, Bowling for Columbine, DaVinci's Inquest, Joan of Arc, Nuremberg, etc.  He has also worked for MTM International with library of around 2,000 hours including TV Series, TVM's, Miniseries and Children programming, with titles such as: The Cape, Mary Tyler Moore Show, Remington Steel, Big Brother, Cagney & Lacey films. At MTM she helped increase the sales to all Latin countries and reinforce the existing relationships with the broadcasters. At American Video Film, Sánchez worked as Operations Supervisor and was responsible for servicing and operations to all international customers. She holds a Certificate in Film, TV and Video from UCLA and a Degree in Film and TV from the Complutense University, Madrid.  Born in Salamanca, Spain, Sánchez is married and has two beautiful children.

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Carlos Sierra ('07)

Founder, Twnel; Founder, Inalambria Internacional, Colombia

Carlos Sierra is a mobile tech entrepreneur with more than 15 years of experience in the mobile internet industry.  In 2001, he founded SWireless, a web-to-mobile transcoding service provider and in 2003, he founded Inalambria, Colombia's largest corporate SMS aggregator. Currently, he is the founder of Twnel, a new mobile messenger that connects businesses with their audiences in emerging markets.  Sierra is an Electrical Engineer and has a Telecom Management Degree from Universidad de Los Andes in Bogotá.  He completed the Management Development Program for Entrepreneurs at UCLA and holds an MBA from MIT Sloan School of Management.  He currently resides in Cambridge, MA and is actively involved in different initiatives that promote innovation based entrepreneurship in Latin America.

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Bryan Stockton

Former Chairman and CEO, Mattel, Inc. 

Bryan Stockton served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Mattel, Inc., the worldwide leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of toys, until January 2015.  With annual revenues in excess of $6.0 billion, operations in more than 40 countries, 31,000 employees, and products sold in more than 150 countries worldwide, Mattel's brands include Barbie®, Hot Wheels®, Fisher-Price®, Matchbox®, Monster High®, Thomas & Friends®, MEGA® Brands, and American Girl®.  

Prior to being named Mattel's sixth Chief Executive Officer in early 2012, Stockton was Chief Operating Officer.  He had responsibility for all of the Company's sales and operations, which included Mattel Brands, Fisher-Price, American Girl and Mattel International, as well as the Worldwide Operations and Corporate Responsibility divisions.  He was President of $3.0 billion Mattel International before 2011, having led and grown Mattel's international operations over the previous seven years.

Stockton joined Mattel in November 2000 as Executive Vice President of Business Planning and Development.  In that role, he was responsible for identifying and developing strategic opportunities for the Company, as well as managing all merger and acquisition activity.  Stockton assumed responsibility for the Company's international operations in 2003 as Executive Vice President of International, driving record financial and operational performance across Mattel's businesses outside the U.S., including sales and marketing for Barbie, Hot Wheels and Fisher-Price.  He was promoted to President of International in 2007.  Under his leadership, International generated consistent growth in gross sales and profitability annually, and increased International's total contribution to Mattel's annual total revenues from 36 percent to current levels of almost 50 percent.   

Prior to joining Mattel, Stockton served as President and Chief Executive Officer of $250 million Basic Vegetable Products, LP (BVP), a privately held company based in Northern California.  BVP was the largest manufacturer of vegetable ingredients in the world.  He repositioned BVP into a global business by accelerating volume growth and lowering manufacturing and distribution costs, and led the successful sale to ConAgra Foods in 2000.  Before joining BVP, Stockton held a variety of positions during his 22-year tenure with Kraft Foods, Inc., the largest U.S.-based packaged food company in the world.  He last served as President of the $1.4 billion North American Foodservice Division.

Stockton earned a BS degree with honors in Business from Indiana University and a Masters of Business Administration degree from the Indiana University Graduate School of Business.  He served on the Board of Bob Evans Farms, Inc. from 2006 to August 2012; held a variety of senior leadership roles on the Toy Industry Association, including two years as Chairman; was a member of the Board of Mattel Children's Hospital UCLA from 2001 to April 2010; served as Chairman of World Trade Week Southern California; and currently serves as a member of the President's Advisory Council at Otis College of Art & Design; UCLA Anderson School Board of Visitors; and the Board of Directors of the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games to be hosted in Los Angeles.

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Carlos J. Valderrama 

Senior Vice President, Global Initiatives, Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce

Carlos J. Valderrama is the Senior Vice President for Global Initiatives at the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce.  He is responsible for developing and implementing programs to create employment and economic growth by fostering global trade and investment for Los Angeles Metropolitan Area businesses.

 Valderrama was appointed by and represented Governors George Deukmejian and Pete Wilson as the California Trade Representative in Mexico and Latin America.  He also served as the Director of the Office of Export Development, managing programs promoting California products and services worldwide, in addition to overseeing the operational activities of the state's overseas trade and investment offices.  He has held executive positions with General Telephone Electronics, GTE Overseas Groups in Brazil and Panama, as the Marketing Manager and General Manager respectively.  

Valderrama has worked closely with former Mayors James Hahn and Antonio Villaraigosa, and currently working with Mayor Eric Garcetti in developing, organizing and implementing foreign trade missions, and attracting foreign investment to the region.  He is one of the founders of the Los Angeles Regional Export Council (LARExC), an outcome of the Brookings Institution Metropolitan Policy Program.  Valderrama was recently appointed by Gov. Edmund G. Brown to the International Trade and Investment Advisory Council. The council will advise the Governor's Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) on strategies to expand international trade and investment for California businesses.

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Ambassador Alejandro Wolff

Former United States Ambassador to Chile 

Ambassador Alex Wolff is Managing Director of Gryphon Partners, a global advisory firm providing companies and governments strategic and operational advice on business and investment opportunities across sectors and markets. He is an adviser to consulting firms, funds and companies on international political and commercial matters. Ambassador Wolff is a Director of Albemarle Corporation, a world leader in specialty chemicals. He was a Director of Rockwood Holdings, a specialty chemicals and advanced materials company that merged with Albemarle.

Before retiring in 2013 from the U.S. Foreign Service with the rank of Career Minister, Alex Wolff was U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Chile between 2010-2013, where he managed the bilateral U.S.-Chile relationship encompassing political, economic, commercial, scientific, military and cultural affairs. In leading the work of 29 Federal agencies, Ambassador Wolff shaped, articulated, and promoted U.S. policies and commercial interests to the Chilean government, business leaders, opinion makers, the media, and the general public. He represented the American community resident in Chile and was responsible for their security. Ambassador Wolff contributed to the U.S. Government's analysis of trends throughout Latin America and the development of U.S. political, economic and trade policies in the region and beyond.  

Ambassador Wolff served as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations and U.S. Deputy Permanent Representative to the Security Council and General Assembly between 2005-2010. He represented the U.S. in Republican and Democratic Administrations, including lengthy periods as the U.S. Acting Permanent Representative. During his tenure, Ambassador Wolff played a key role in developing, coordinating, defending and promoting U.S. policies on all major geopolitical and economic issues. He led successful negotiations on key UN Resolutions, including those seeking to constrain the Iranian and North Korean nuclear and ballistic missile programs, Arab-Israeli issues, peacekeeping operations, international economic and trade matters, human rights and other top foreign policy issues. As Deputy Chief of Mission and Acting Ambassador at the U.S. Embassy in France between 2001-2005, Ambassador Wolff was the senior career U.S. official and chief operating officer at one of the premier U.S. diplomatic missions. He led an Embassy of 900 U.S. and French employees representing nearly 50 Federal agencies during a period that spanned the 9/11 attacks in the U.S. and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. He was responsible for the day-to-day management of the U.S.-French relationship, playing a lead role in shepherding multiple critical issues and developing programs and initiatives that continue to mark U.S.-French ties. His senior assignments in the State Department included tours as Executive Assistant to Secretaries of State Madeleine Albright and Colin Powell.  

Ambassador Wolff has wide experience in European, Middle Eastern, Asian, Latin American and African affairs. He has received numerous distinctions for his contributions to the development and successful implementation of U.S. political and commercial objectives, including the Presidential Distinguished and Meritorious Service Awards, the State Department's Distinguished, Superior and Meritorious Honor Awards, and the Secretary of State's Career Achievement Award. Ambassador Wolff is fluent in French and Spanish.

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2016 Latin American Business Conference