Mission Statement

We believe that the world would be a better place with greater equity in the workplace. We believe that when different experiences, different backgrounds, different perspectives all come together, they create better outcomes. In order to achieve this, we begin with the fundamental belief in the uniqueness and value of all individuals. We are inspired by what we see the future can look like.

What We Do

AWE | Advancing Women Executives is an enterprise solutions company that helps clients create sustainable workplace cultures by embedding equity in their companies. We partner with over 2,000 professionals from Fortune 1000 companies and train over 25,000 employees annually. AWE clients have the common goal of learning, growing, partnering, supporting and promoting each other with the shared philosophy that awareness and action lead to change.

AWE Milestones

AWE Milestones

Team

Alexandra Yan

Data Entry Specialist

Alexandra Yan

Data Entry Specialist

She/Her

Alexandra is a data guru with a passion for creating processes that help teams work smarter. She obtained her bachelor’s degree in Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior from the University of California, Davis which helped her develop strong research skills and use information to come to logical conclusions. Learning about the way our brains work at a physiological and behavioral level allows her to develop solutions that are more intuitive.

At previous companies, she improved business processes through analysis and research of data such as reducing content upload time by 45% and developing financial reports to inform better budget decisions. She has been praised for being able to collect information and present it in a way that’s easy to understand. Alexandra has also taught herself multiple coding languages such as CSS, HTML and Python.

Despite having a strong technical background, she regularly uses the other half of her brain to engage in creative hobbies. In her free time, Alexandra enjoys creating digital and traditional art that holds meaning as well as taking photos that portray warmth. In addition, she has been playing harp for 16 years, starting at a young age and continuing in university. Alexandra believes that being both artistic and analytical is, to quote Hannah Montana, “the best of both worlds.” Lastly, she is a proud owner of an 8 quart digital air fryer.

Françoise Meier

Associate Director, Sales

Françoise Meier

Associate Director, Sales

She/Her

Françoise thrives on building equitable communities and thoughtful partnerships. As the Associate Director at AWE, she leads AWE’s expansion into new territories across the US and internationally in order to scale the company’s growth and to strengthen the careers of hundreds of women across the Fortune 1000. Her detail-orientated approach to projects and relationships allows her to create customized solutions that drive engagement and long-term, lasting culture change within companies.

With a background in nonprofit development and communications at Doctors of the World, Françoise worked on award-winning campaigns to raise funds for numerous emergencies including the Syrian civil war, the European refugee crisis and Hurricane Matthew in Haiti.

In addition to her work in the US, Françoise has spent time working in both Asia and South America in communications-based roles. She received her BA in Political Science at New York University, from which she gained a keen understanding of the socio-political factors that influence economies and businesses around the world.

Born and raised in the UK, she loves to spend her free time reading historical fiction and cooking traditional French recipes that her Mum sends her. A travel enthusiast, her personal life goal is to travel to every country in the world. She is currently at 50.

Jiean Park

Director of Finance & People

Jiean Park

Director of Finance & People

She/Her

Jiean is an operational leader with an expertise in people and finance. She is charged with attracting and recruiting all the great people who work AWE and making sure everyone gets paid!

Jiean is a problem-solver and collaborator who loves to make other people’s jobs easier. Her background in finance and marketing provides her with an analytical and data-driven perspective while offering a creative viewpoint to evolving organizational cultures and organizations. She is inspired by maximizing efficiencies and loves improving processes, but her real passion is to develop, engage and motivate teams by building a culture of innovation, creativity and value. Before joining AWE, she spent many years as a consulting project manager, working with various Fortune 500 companies on new product launches, B2B initiatives and marketing campaigns.

Jiean earned her bachelor’s degree in Cognitive Science from Wellesley College and has three beautiful kids. Lately, she spends her downtime doing yoga and driving to Arizona on the weekends to watch her youngest son play baseball. She enjoys reading self-help books, playing piano and has a secret passion for event planning and decorating.

Karen Lew

AWE Accelerator Success Manager

Karen Lew

AWE Accelerator Success Manager

She/Her

Karen is an architect of culture. She ties in long-term goals and “big-picture” ideas into everyday processes to create experiences for genuine connections and collaboration. Led by her experience in community organizing in the non-profit world and her data-driven research background, she currently acts as the Accelerator Success Coordinator at AWE. Passionate about the real and scalable effects of L&D along with DEI in the workplace, she currently designs experiences for AWE’s Accelerator Program for mid-level women across the Fortune 500.

Karen’s career follows a narrative and trajectory of creating spaces for marginalized folks in academic institutions, nonprofits and now corporate spaces. Radicalized by her experience living in diaspora and her education at Wellesley College, Karen enjoys making connections between systems and daily life with her formative B.A. in Economics and unofficial study of critical race theory. A big believer in the process for social change and the tenants of transformative justice, she invests her time studying good social systems and designs along with the importance of form meeting function in everyday interactions.

Outside of work hours, you can find Karen trying to level up from a V1 to a V2 rock climber, talking about her love for Danish designs and tuning into Bowen Yang and Matt Rogers’ “Las Culturistas” podcast for culture updates. Moreover, in her free time she enjoys reading existential philosophy, studying linguistics and languages and doing impersonations of pop culture personalities.

Laura Civiello

Head of Operations

Laura Civiello

Head of Operations

She/Her

Laura is a producer and a problem-solver. No matter what the project, she brings to it a unique mix of project management savvy, an analytical mindset, purposeful persistence and a dash of creativity. Her latest project is being AWE’s Head of Operations which includes oversight of Marketing, Finance and HR.

Her producing career began at age eight when Laura talked her younger sister into acting in comedy skits for her new tape recorder (they got rave reviews from her parents). With that success under her belt, she went on to have a 28-year career in television as executive producer and network executive. An integral part of the launch teams for three cable networks (Paul Allen’s /TechTV/, Comcast’s /G4/ and NBCUniversal’s /Esquire/), Laura acquired, developed and oversaw more than 500 hours of programming, including American Ninja Warrior, which has gone on to become a prime time hit for NBC.

In addition to putting her extensive skills to work for AWE, she serves as Board member for the Village Green, a 627-unit, multi-family community in Los Angeles on the National Register of Historic Places. She graduated from Cornell University with a B.A. in History and is looking forward to resuming her road trips to the Southwest with her husband and two standard poodles.

Megan Mulhall

Managing Director

Megan Mulhall

Managing Director

She/Her

Megan is an American-Australian business leader and strategic advisor, inspiring organizations to embrace talent practices in support of equitable and inclusive cultures, organizational growth and financial outperformance. As Managing Director of AWE, she leads the professional services team to grow and deliver diversity and leadership development programs across the Fortune 1000.

Megan comes to AWE with over 15 years of experience in international business development and human capital consulting throughout North America and Asia Pacific. Prior to AWE, she developed the Leadership Architect® consulting practice at PreVisor (now Gartner) in Sydney, Australia, oversaw the expansion of educational entertainment brands into North America, and led communications and development programs for nonprofit clients in partnership with the Gates Foundation.

Megan received her Master of Commerce degree from the University of Sydney and a B.A. in Psychology from UCSD. In 2015, Megan co-founded TEDxSanJuanIsland, an annual conference under license from TED, where she continues to champion women’s voices and provide a platform for bold ideas in workplace transformation.

Originally from San Juan Island in the Pacific Northwest, Megan lives in Northern California with her husband and their two young daughters. In her spare time, she reads non-fiction and hosts a lot of BBQs.

Meiko Takayama

Founder & CEO

Meiko Takayama

Founder & CEO

She/Her

Meiko is a visionary CEO and entrepreneur, founding AWE | Advancing Women Executives, the leading enterprise solutions company focused on creating sustainable workplace cultures by embedding equity into companies. A 26th generation rebel born of immigrant parents, Meiko is a connector, a global change agent, and a tireless advocate for equity in the workplace. She is a sought after thought leader and expert and speaks annually to thousands of professionals on the topics of diversity in the workplace, branding, networking, sponsorship, unconscious bias and storytelling in business.

After graduating from Bryn Mawr College, Meiko had a successful career in the art field in Europe and New York before changing her focus to business consulting. She was a Managing Director with CEB (now Gartner), through the company’s successful IPO and growth to $450 million in revenue. After many years of managing the West Coast business, Meiko became an executive recruiter and continued to experience first-hand the lack of diversity on leadership teams. In an effort to create a paradigm shift in the way companies look at accelerating the careers of underrepresented professionals, Meiko created AWE in 2012.

Meiko has been named a Women of Influence by LA Biz, a Woman of Promise by Comerica Bank and the LA Lakers and was featured in BCBG’s Holiday Catalog as part of their series on influential and powerful women. She’s been on the Board of Directors for South Central Scholars and is active with her sons’ school. Meiko speaks regularly at Fortune 500 companies and conferences, including Northwestern University, Occidental College, IIT Global Conference, West Hollywood Women’s Leadership Conference, Women in Technology Hollywood, UPWARD, Women of LAVA, Harvard Business School Association of Southern California and Silicon Valley’s Influencer Series.

While making the world a better place, Meiko can also be found laughing with her husband and two sons in Los Angeles, enjoying a meal and mahjongg with friends, supporting political candidates and dreaming of her next international holiday.

Reena Kirspel

AWE Leader Success Manager

Reena Kirspel

AWE Leader Success Manager

She/Her

Reena’s diverse and storied career path spans the performing arts, education, and communications sectors within private, public, and nonprofit settings. She is an experienced content creator, curriculum developer, and dynamic instructor – having designed and delivered theater and public speaking programs for schools, as well as professional development workshops for Fortune 500 companies.

She holds a B.F.A. in Drama from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, and an M.P.A. in Strategic Performance Management from Rutgers University’s School of Public Affairs and Administration. Equipping individuals to realize their full potential as both leaders and team-players, while simultaneously encouraging them to be risk-takers is her passion. Along with helping organizations identify areas of needed growth and developing metrics that are in-line with company mission & vision.

Born in Zambia, raised in New York and currently residing in the Garden State (NJ) with her husband and teenage sons, Reena is an avid traveler – having visited Australia, Dubai, India, Singapore, South Africa and more! She cares deeply about people from all walks of life, as evidenced by her time spent mentoring inner-city youth, promoting anti-trafficking initiatives, and supporting women in recovery. Reena firmly believes that growth is on-going and learning is a life-long adventure!

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