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Alyce C. Alston is a highly skilled chief executive with outstanding experience, talent and success in having launched and grown some the world's most recognized brands , including: Launch Publisher O, The Oprah Magazine, CEO DeBeers, President at RDA, CEO and President of Commemorative brands inc.
Ms. Alston's unique ability to leverage her superior leadership skills and depth of knowledge from one market and industry - to another - has been a significant factor to her 20 year history of outstanding success. During her career, she restructured and revived organizations, launched new businesses and dramatically increased the impact and profitability of start-up and large companies. Her product and brand-building efforts have catapulted revenue, profits and market share for major organizations.
Managing Director of Locke, Lord, Bissell and Liddell
As Chairman of the Firm's Private Equity Practice Group, Gina Betts has extensive experience in corporate and securities law including representing corporations in public offerings of debt and equity securities, representing issuers in private placements of debt and equity securities, preparing SEC reports, and counseling on general SEC compliance. Additionally, she focuses her practice on representing purchasers and sellers of both public and private corporations.
Ms. Betts is also a member of the Firm's nationally-ranked REIT practice.
Ms. Betts is also a leader in the Firm's philanthropic efforts with her leadership in the Foundation for the Education of Young Women, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas, and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. She is also the chairman of the 2007 Cattle Baron's Ball, the largest single day fundraiser for the American Cancer Society.
Principal, Paradigm Advisors
Michelle U. Gass brings over 20 years of industry experience to the Advisory Board. She formed and serves as a principal of Paradigm Advisors in Dallas. She began her career in public accounting and previously worked for another hedge fund. Ms. Gass holds a Masters Degree and received a CPA certificate in 1982. She is active in her church and various other community organizations.
Cathy Iberg, CPA
Cathy Iberg is the President, Deputy CIO and Managing Director of Marketable Alternative Investments for The University of Texas Investment Management Company (UTIMCO). UTIMCO was established in 1996 to manage the endowment and pension assets for the University of Texas and Texas A&M Systems. Ms. Iberg began her career at UTIMCO in April of 1991 when she joined U.T. System Office of Asset Management, the predecessor of UTIMCO. Prior to assuming her current position, Ms. Iberg has served in various senior management positions with the organization, including interim appointments as Chief Executive Officer. She is a CPA and practiced in the area of public accounting for 15 years. Ms. Iberg holds a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting
Texas Women Ventures Fund
Carol is a co-founder of the Texas Women Ventures Fund. She is also a Charter Investor in the fund. A former executive with Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase, Carol has over 26 years of experience advising and connecting growing companies to capital.
Carol has been a leader in capital access initiatives for business owners and in creating organizations for business women. Carol is a Co-Founder of the NAWBO Dallas micro-loan program, Capital Concepts, Inc. and the Executive Women?s Partnership in Houston. She serves on the Advisory Council of Springboard Enterprises, a national initiative to connect women entrepreneurs to venture capital and on the Advisory Board for the Center for Women's Business Research in Washington D.C. She has served as an Advisory Director of a private equity fund which invests in minority and women-owned businesses and an Advisor to the Fort Worth Women?s Business Assistance Center. She is also a member of Golden Seeds, an angel investor network.
Carol is a frequent speaker or panelist on the topic of growth capital for emerging businesses.
Carol is a Dallas resident. She graduated Cum Laude from the University of Georgia with degrees in Economics and Political Science and received her MBA from Tulane University.
Managing Director, Alix Partners
Becky Roof brings a unique perspective to her turnaround and crisis management engagements. With over 25 years of experience, her credentials consist of an equal blend of corporate and consulting experience. Becky?s tenure as vice president and CFO of a Houston-based oilfield services company provides her with an enhanced perspective of the corporate and operating issues faced by management, other stakeholders and their representatives. She also possesses an extensive consulting background providing interim and crisis management to troubled and underperforming companies in a broad array of industries.
Prior to joining AlixPartners, Becky was a director in the corporate finance, regeneration and disputes practice for PricewaterhouseCoopers. Previously, she provided litigation support, fraud investigative work, and corporate recovery consulting services for Ernst & Young LLP.
Becky is a Certified Management Accountant, a Certified Insolvency & Restructuring Advisor, and a CPA (licensed in Texas). She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration and Bachelor of Arts degree in geology from Trinity University, where she was a university scholar. She is a member of the Turnaround Management Association, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, and is on the Board of Directors of the American Bankruptcy Institute.
Managing Partner, Andrews Kurth L.L.P
Robin is the Managing Partner of Andrews Kurth L.L.P.'s Houston office and serves as a member of numerous firm committees including the firm's Policy Committee and Finance Committee. She is co-chair of the Firm's national bankruptcy and financial restructuring practice. Cited as a leading lawyer in her field of law by numerous legal and trade publications, Robin is listed as one of Chambers USA's America's Leading Business Lawyers in Bankruptcy Restructuring; among The Best Lawyers in America® and a Texas Monthly "Super Lawyer." She was elected to the American Law Institute in 2007. In 2011, she was elected as a Fellow in the American College of Bankruptcy, named by the National Diversity Counsel as one of the Most Powerful and Influential Women in Texas, and was profiled as a "Woman Worth Watching" by the Profiles in Diversity Journal.
Ms. Russell is a frequent speaker on bankruptcy and other financial topics. She is the author of numerous books and legal articles, including Last Rights; Liquidating a Company; Texas Practice Guide: Creditors' Rights; Texas Practice Guide: Financial Transactions, Volumes 2 and 3; Texas Secured Lending Guide; Texas Real Estate Lending Guide; "Understanding The Risks of Directing an Institution in Financial Distress," Chapter 5, Handbook for Directors of Financial Institutions; Texas Problem Loan Guide; and "Maximizing Estate Value Through Effective Economic Litigation Analysis," Norton's 1998 Annual Survey of Bankruptcy Law.
Robin is a member of the Alexis de Tocqueville Society of the United Way and the Texas Bar Foundation and is involved in numerous other charitable organizations. Robin began practicing law at Andrews Kurth following a clerkship for the Texas Supreme Court. She received her J.D. cum laude from Baylor University School of Law in 1986 where she was the highest ranking graduate and Editor-in-Chief of the Baylor Law Review. She holds an LLM in Banking Law Studies from Boston University.
Laura T. Starks, Ph.D.
University of Texas
Laura T. Starks is the Chairman of the Department of Finance, the Charles E. and Sarah M. Seay Regents Chair of Finance, and Director of the AIM Investment Center in the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin. She has done extensive research on finance issues including research that focuses on corporate governance and institutional investors. Her publications have appeared in the leading academic journals and she has presented her research at universities all over the world. She has received a number of awards for her research including the 1996 Smith Breeden Distinguished Paper Award from the Journal of Finance, the 1997 Western Finance Association Best Paper in Corporate Finance Award, the 1998 Financial Management Association Best Paper in Corporate Finance Award, the 2002 and 2003 FMA European Meeting Best Paper Award and the 2003 Fama-DFA Second Prize from the Journal of Financial Economics. She was named a Fellow of the FMA in 2002.
She is an Editor of the Review of Financial Studies and has served as Associate Editor of a number of finance journals, including the Journal of Finance, Review of Financial Studies, and Financial Management. She has served on the Board of Directors of the three national academic finance organizations: the American Finance Association, the Western Finance Association, and the Financial Management Association. She is an independent director for the CREF Retirement Accounts and the TIAA-CREF Mutual Funds and serves on the Governing Council of the Independent Directors Council. She was previously an independent director for USAA Mutual Funds. She has served on the Investment Advisory Committee for the Employees Retirement System of the State of Texas since 1990 and is currently Chairman of the Committee.
Elizabeth D. Williams
Vice President, Legacy Trust Company
Liz specializes in managing assets for high net worth individuals, trusts, foundations, and endowments. She joined Legacy Trust Company in 2009, where she has responsibility for its managers of public securities and participates in setting investment strategies for Legacy's clients. Liz went to work for Texas Commerce Bank in 1982, managing portfolios for the Bank's trust clients, and remained in that role for twenty-six years as the Bank merged and the Trust Department became the JPMorgan Private Bank. During those years, she was a member of the TCB/Chase Investment Strategy Committee and subsequently served as Investment Co-Chair of JPMorgan's North American Private Bank Trust and Investment Committee. She began her career at at Rotan Mosle, Inc., a regional investment banking firm in Houston. There, she valued closely held companies for tax, acquisition, disposition, and other corporate purposes.
A native Houstonian, Liz holds an MBA and Master of Accounting from Rice University where she also earned an MA and PhD in French. She received her BA degree in French from Vanderbilt University, where she graduated Magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa. She is a Chartered Financial Analyst and member of the CFA Institute and the Houston CFA Society, and she is licensed as a Certified Public Accountant.
Liz has served on the boards of Buffalo Bayou Coalition, Friends of Fondren Library (Rice University), Junior League of Houston, Main Street Theater, Phi Beta Kappa Alumni of Greater Houston, and St. John's School Alumni Association. She is a former docent at the Bayou Bend Collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.
Ellen Wood spent eleven years investing for hedge funds in Dallas, most recently as portfolio manager and partner at Carlson Capital, with prior experience as an equity analyst at Paragon Associates. She recently retired from her full time business career to have more time to invest in a balanced portfolio of investments, and philanthropic interests.
For the past fifteen years she has served on various community and alumni boards, foundations and committees primarily focused on women, youth and education. She is looking forward to serving on the Advisory Board as the organization has a similar philanthropic focus.
Ellen received an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business and a BBA in Accounting from the University of Texas at Austin. She has earned both the CFA and CPA designations.
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