The Power of Recognition

    The stories of women who break barriers in tech and lead with innovation serve as powerful inspirations. Their achievements not only pave the way for future generations but also highlight the transformative impact of recognition and awards. Today, we highlight five exceptional women in tech who have been recognized in the Women in Tech Global Awards, significantly impacting their careers and personal growth.

    Alexandra Shtetinska, Senior Director, People & Culture at The Coca-Cola Company, won the HR & Program Manager Award in 2021 for her strategic HR coaching and digital transformation efforts.

    Asha R. Keddy, CEO of Henna Business Services LLC & Former Corporate Vice President at Intel Corporation, received the bronze Global Technology Leader Award in 2021 for her work on next-generation technology and 5G wireless.

    Carol Kim, Executive Director Global Real Estate at IBM, earned the silver AI & Data Science Leader of the Year Award in 2023 for her leadership in integrating AI within IBM.

    Linda Patterson, Senior Director, Global Technology Training at GenSpark, won the bronze ERG Leader of the Year Award for her ability to build high-performance teams and drive continuous improvement in the IT industry.

    Shannon Nash, Chief Financial Officer at Wing, is recognized as a Speaker at the Women in Tech Global Conference, for her extensive experience in financial operations and strategic planning.

    These distinguished women will share their insights and how winning these global awards has influenced their careers and lives.

    My Journey is Tech...

    My journey in tech was not planned, I never believed that I would work in the technology world as I knew nothing about it. My journey started in a small boutique company in the field of career counseling, training, and talent selection. I was quickly attracted by the dynamics of technology and got the opportunity to work in the selection of IT and telecom specialists. I will never forget my first interview task, which included an extensive presentation of the C++ programming language. I had no idea what that was but I did my research, got help from friends, and landed my dream job.

    I became interested in the software world without even realizing it. My interest did not stop, I read a lot and joined different communities of technology professionals. I learned to speak their language and became a trusted consultant. My next career steps were related to talent management, leadership development, management, and HR partnerships for technology teams in various software companies. I was able to contribute to the community from an organizational perspective and put focused efforts to understand the IT motivation for progress and how the HR profession should evolve to meet these dynamics. I also nurture my IT interest with academic work as I study Ph.D. in Differential Psychology and Cultural Differences. Most of my research in the field is focused on the IT industry, as it blends well with my professional path.  I have always been interested in what drives people in their career choices.  

    Alexandra Shtetinska, Senior HR Director at The Coca-Cola Company

    I believe I’m one of those increasingly rare individuals that have built their careers at a single organization. While I did lead software development teams earlier in my career, I’ve spent the majority of my time at Intel and most of that time focused on building the future of wireless communications technologies.

    In the context of my business unit, Next Generation Systems, we have a vision of a world where computing intelligence is available wherever and whenever it's needed. In other words, a Fully Connected Mobile Intelligent Society. Without getting too technical, this means creating highly distributed computing architectures that are spread over great distances - literally the entire planet - enriching the way we live, work, play while doing so with an increasing focus on sustainability, green energy, etc. This probably sounds impossible, but that is the kind of project scope that really sets my passions alight. Doing the impossible (or at least very improbable) is what I signed up for here at Intel.

    Asha R. Keddy, Former Corporate Vice President at Intel Corporation

    Data has applications in every field and no matter where you are in the world, there will always be a need, a use, and a demand for data. With the increasing amount of data being generated and collected, the need for data science skilled professionals is increasing and expected to grow in the future. 

    Carol Kim, Executive Director at IBM's Global Chief Data Office

    My journey to this achievement started with a passion for professionally developing women, helping each other to maximize their potential.  Thus, over the years, I have conducted sessions for women that focus on improving their self-esteem and business etiquette as well as teaching them to be not just goal-setters but goal-getters.  In addition, my challenges as a woman in leadership, and an African-American woman in leadership, encouraged me to become an advocate for the progression of women.  When the opportunity became available at my organization to co-sponsor the Women of Pyramid (parent company of GenSpark) ERG, I welcomed the use of my transparency, skills, and abilities to help women to uniquely be themselves, embrace their greatness, and grow.

    Linda Patterson, Director, Technology Training at GenSpark

    I've always sought out companies whose mission I believe in and that are poised for growth. 

    I am intentional about encouraging diversity because I was often the only person in the room who looks like me. Bringing new and helpful technology to market benefits from bringing diverse viewpoints and experiences together. 

    I'm energized when I'm part of building and growing companies. 

    I'm pleased to be at Wing where we're building an entire new industry around drone delivery, transforming the transportation space, and continuing to expand drone delivery worldwide. In just the last year, we've expanded our operations in the United States, Europe, and Australia. 

    Shannon Nash, Chief Financial Officer at Wing

    Empowering Women in Tech: Career Advice and Tips

    It may sound like a cliché but my advice is to spend time getting to know yourself first and find a passion you truly enjoy. Then be brave, find your inner strength and motivation to give you energy along the way. Think holistically about your career, be consistent, spend time to grow your capabilities, and stay always curious. As women, we should be proud of our feminine qualities and should never forget our authentic selves and talents are our biggest strengths.

    I’m a big fan of the need to take risks as you develop your career. And if that results in a setback, we need to be resilient enough to pick ourselves up and dust ourselves off to move forward once again. This is just as important in life as it is in business - perhaps more so! ​​​​​​​

    Maintaining your integrity is another key piece of a great career. No matter where you work, all of us will face pressure to accept some decisions that we know are just not in line with the value system of the organization. I have been in multiple situations where I was asked to pass judgment in line with the group, even though I felt that the decision was not the correct one. Censure for me ranged from removal from the project in question to some very combative discussions. 

    I don’t feel I’ve ever had to compromise in that regard, and I know my career is ultimately better despite setbacks from some of these situations. With integrity comes respect and moral authority versus just positional authority…and fewer regrets. Beyond your job, it’s hard to go through life if you can’t respect yourself and the decisions you’ve made.

    Focus on your strengths and continuously seek and explore opportunities where technology can be leveraged alongside your existing skills or passions. Have an open mind, embrace new challenges, and expand your network and skillsets. My greatest growth came from pushing outside my comfort zone. Build relationships with people who you aspire to be like. Always be willing to listen and learn and surround yourself with great mentors, coaches, and sponsors. Have a positive attitude, stay curious, and focus on your potential and willingness to grow!

    My essential advice is to know that not all IT roles are deeply technical.  There are plenty of non-technical roles where your expertise is needed.  Be your authentic self, know and understand your interests, and find the tech career that best suits you.  Don’t let the word “technology” prevent you from pursuing an IT career as other skills are needed in the tech industry. Practical Tips:  1) Know how to share technical information in non-technical terms; 2) Building relationships with your customers and holding them accountable for their part is key to driving sound IT solutions; 3) Always know and communicate the value added by implementing an IT solution.

    No one is going to care about your career more than you - be your own best advocate, have a plan, and stay active in your journey. I recommend people create their own board of directors - people you can call on at any time, who care deeply about you and can provide different perspectives on your career and how to advance it. Lastly, find companies and work environments where you are valued. And when you do, be a good steward of that culture and extend a helping hand to others.

    Personal Reflections on the Women in Tech Global Awards

    How did winning the award made you feel?

    It was a very pleasant surprise considering how many talented professionals were nominated in this category. I’m genuinely grateful and proud of this recognition. Knowing that my work for girls in STEM makes a difference in the right direction is what gives me the strength to continue. This is a valuable award to me as a professional but also to the Company as we take consistent, targeted, and courageous steps to empower, educate and support women in their STEM careers. - Alexandra Shtetinska


    Humbling and a tad surreal! I’ve won awards before but being honored by your peers is truly something else. I was also inspired by all the other women candidates! It gave me pause to look at the tireless efforts and volunteer work that went into this process, including the work of the jury. Drops of water make the ocean … 

    Finally, I learned a lot more about the efforts of the WomenTech Network and I’m in awe of what the organization does. It made me want to double down on the efforts to pay it forward as we have a long way to go. - Asha Keddy


    I am humbled to receive the AI & Data Science Leader of the Year Award and I encourage more women to join me in this exciting field! Being able to transform and leverage data to deliver value is incredibly exciting and rewarding. - Carol Kim


    I'm incredibly honored and grateful. I really value Women in Tech for their efforts to lift up girls and women around the world. I'm very fortunate to be surrounded by so many supportive colleagues and friends, including at Wing, who have supported me throughout my career. - Shannon Nash

    As we reflect on the inspiring journeys of Alexandra, Asha, Carol, Linda, and Shannon, it becomes clear that the recognition they received has had a profound impact on their personal and professional lives. Their insights, reflections, and emotions highlight the power of acknowledgment in fueling growth, boosting confidence, and fostering a sense of accomplishment.

    Each of these exceptional women has demonstrated resilience, innovation, and leadership in the tech industry, serving as role models for aspiring women in STEM. 

    Take a look at the award categories and consider nominating yourself or other deserving women who have made significant contributions to the tech field. By doing so, you not only honor their hard work but also help in addressing gender bias and closing the gap in the tech industry.

    Encourage more women to step into the spotlight.

    Nominate, share, and contribute to a brighter future for women in tech.