SUE Talks Presenters | San Diego 2021

San Diego Photographer

Kimberlee Centera

Kimberlee Centera is a pioneer and a trailblazer in the renewable energy industry. She is one of the only female CEOs of a utility scale renewable energy consulting practice. As a risk management expert for the development and financing of large-scale generator energy projects, she possesses the expertise to identify, manage and mitigate risk. Leading industry stakeholders rely on her to analyze and resolve legal issues and ensure the closing of transactions on complex high-value projects.

An enthusiastic champion of women, Kimberlee believes that diversity is essential in meeting the demands of the rapidly growing renewable sector. She understands that women face many barriers to job retention and career advancement. Frequently, they carry the burden of balancing both work and family. Difficult work schedules and lack of flexibility can be demanding for women, especially if they are responsible for childcare and household duties. Having experienced these challenges in her life, she encourages and mentors’ women from around the world, by offering them actionable skills that help them to articulate their value, so that they can confidently negotiate raises and promotions.

Kimberlee walks her talk at TerraPro Solutions, the company is overwhelmingly female staffed. She has found that the most competent people are often women. They possess the relationship-nurturing skills and emotional intelligence that are critical for any consultancy. Workplace flexibility helps mothers tend to the needs of their families, resulting in higher productivity, creativity, and retention.

For many years, she has supported women by contributing her time and talent to professional organizations including Women in Renewable Industries and Sustainable Energy (WRISE); Women in Cleantech & Sustainability (WCS); and the Women in Wind Global Leadership Program, a joint initiative of the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) and the Global Women’s Network for the Energy Transition, (GWNET). She has conducted numerous workshops that teach women strategies to help them achieve their career goals.

As an entrepreneur, Kimberlee has been recognized as a finalist for the Women in Power award; the San Diego Business Journal CEO of the Year award; and the National Association of Women Business Owners Green Community award.

A leading renewable energy expert, she is an editorial contributor to North American Clean Energy. She has been a guest on numerous podcasts and radio programs including National Public Radio’s Marketplace. She frequently serves as a speaker and educator at wind and solar energy conferences.

kristine custodio suero

Kristine Custodio Suero

Kristine Custodio Suero is an award-winning legal professional, educator, author and highly sought after speaker inspiring legal professionals to achieve authentic, purpose-driven careers and lives.

Kristine is most passionate about the innovation economy and dedicates her time to inclusive economic development projects, including employee ownership, and endeavoring to advance women in business, especially in non-traditional roles and industries such as STEAM and construction.

Kristine serves as the Chair of the City of San Diego Citizens’ Equal Opportunity Commission advocating for supplier diversity in contracting with the City of San Diego and bridging the rich cultural landscape of her beloved city with opportunities of economic impact to build a vibrant place to live, work and play.

wendy forkas

Wendy Forkas

Wendy Forkas is the Chief Executive Officer, of Adjoin, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, serving adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities and veterans in California. She has over 28 years of experience in the disabilities field with over 18 years serving as an executive leader for non-profit entities. Wendy holds a Master of Arts degree in Behavioral Analysis and Therapy and Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology, both completed at the University of Pacific in Stockton, California.

Wendy has a comprehensive service background from overseeing day-to-day business operations of organizations to hands on execution of client programs including vocational services, integrated employment services, living services, and behavioral services. She has also overseen and implemented safety, quality assurance and new service development of organizations. Titles Wendy has held throughout her 28 years working with non-profit organizations are Chief Operating Officer, Vice President of Programs, Director of Operations, Director of Program Services, Assistant to the Regional Director, Area Manager, Behavioral Consultant/Behavioral Program Manager, Behavioral Specialist, and Clinic Coordinator.

Wendy is currently serving as the Vice President of the California Disability Services Association (CDSA) Board, is the Vendor Advisory Chair for the San Diego Regional Center Board and is a member of the San Diego Developmental Disabilities Provider Network (DDPN) where she is the DDPN representative to the Lanterman Coalition in Sacramento, CA. Wendy has also served for the last 8 years as the Chair of the DDPN Leading the Charge Committee.

sherry hu

Sherry Hu

Dr. Sherry Hu was elected to the Dublin City Council in 2020. She is a founder and CEO of an educational organization.

In her past career, Dr. Sherry Hu held a management position at PG&E, served as the Director of Natural Resources Defense Council, and an assistant professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Sherry has also co-founded several technology companies and served on board of director positions. She also is a board of directors of a non-profit organization with the mission to develop leadership for students

Sherry received a PhD in Architectural Engineering from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln after earning her MS in Architectural Engineering and BS in Environmental Engineering and Business. Dr. Sherry’s book, Achieve Peace of Mind in Your Finances, won Amazon Best Selling Book in Aug 2021.

rebecca massoud

Rebecca Massoud

Rebecca Massoud is a speaker coach, marketing mentor and creator of the popular Speak Shine Sell Workshop.

She inspires women entrepreneurs to stop hiding out and be fully expressed with their message–whether in a big room or on Zoom.

Rebecca’s clients courageously step into the spotlight with a soulful signature talk, attract their ideal clients with ease, and double (or triple!) their revenue, as they unapologetically say “yes” to being seen, heard and highly visible.

Rebecca is the host of the Savvy, Soulful & Successful Radio Show and is a seasoned speaker and event emcee.

dwayne pittman jr

Dwayne Pittman Jr.

Dwayne Pittman Jr. is the Guest Service Supervisor of a 4 Diamond Hotel in Temecula California, The Ponte Vineyard Inn.

With nearly 20 years in Customer Service, combined with 9 years of Disney Guest Service Training, he brings a unique perspective.

He is passionate about leading with his team to help them reach their own personal and career goals.

Introducing Our SUE Risers!

olivia lopez

Olivia Lopez

Olivia Lopez is originally from Salt Lake City, Utah and moved to San Diego when she was 6 years old.

She is currently a 9th grader in High School and is not only an excellent student, but active in Girl Scouts, musical theater, and plays for her High School Volleyball team – her most recent passion.

In her free time, she can be found doing all things crafty & creative like baking sweet treats, practicing theatrical make-up & hair, making jewelry, and gardening with her mom. She loves nothing more than being around family, friends and her beloved Biewer Terrier, Frodo.

One of her greatest qualities is her ability to make everyone laugh with her sassy, witty sense of humor, and she is always looking for opportunities to help others. Her secret weapon is her disarming smile and dimples.

clara steer

Clara Steer

Clara Steer is a Junior at Pacific Ridge School in Carlsbad, CA. She is the co-leader of her schools Latinx Unidos affinity group and a member of their Student Equity Advisory.

Clara is the leader of the Speech and Debate team and cross country team captain. Her family is from South America, and she enjoys being bilingual and bicultural. Born and raised in San Diego, she is one of four siblings.

In 2020, she co-founded Stellar, a service-learning group focused on supporting kids with cancer both locally and internationally. This topic and group is very close to her heart because her family was personally affected by cancer.

She also loves competing in cross country and track and field, alongside her twin sister. When she’s not running, she enjoys going to the beach with friends, movies and music.

elsa steer

Elsa Steer

Elsa Steer is a 17-year-old student-athlete at Pacific Ridge High School in Carlsbad, California. Though she was born and raised in Encinitas, she’s half latina due to her mother’s South American heritage.

Elsa is the captain of her school’s Cross Country team because she loves running and hopes to run in college.

With her twin sister, Elsa started a service group in 2020 dedicated to playing with children affected by cancer, named Stellar. They have proudly partnered with the Fundación Amigos Del Niño Con Cáncer, and have been working on donations to Rady’s Children’s Hospital.

Elsa is a part of Latinos Unidos, an affinity group at her school, involved in the Student Equity Advisory, as well as a leader of the Speech and Debate team. She plays the piano and guitar and loves going to the beach, traveling, or hiking with her friends or family.

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