Maria Eugenia Brizuela de Avila
Ex-Minister of Foreign Affairs for El Salvador
Mayu has broken many barriers. In 1997 she founded an insurance company in El Salvador and became the first woman President of one. In June 1999 she became the first woman to be designated Minister of Foreign Affairs serving her country for five years. On August 2004 she was elected President of Banco Salvadoreño becoming the first woman President of a private bank in El Salvador. She lead negotiations to forge a strategic alliance with Banistmo, the biggest regional bank, and was elected member of the Board and CEO, keeping those positions when HSBC, one of the world’s largest financial conglomerates, acquired a controlling majority in 2006. In 2007 she pioneered the new function Corporate Sustainability as Head for HSBC Latin America, a role she ended in March 2015.
Mayu has a solid academic background in Art, Insurance and Law, with a Masters in Business Administration from INCAE and a Postgrad in Sustainable Business from the University of Cambridge. She has actively participated in socially oriented service institutions such as Vital Voices for women development and FUSADES the most prestigious private sector think tank, as well as internationally being the first Latin-American member of PLAN International Board and member of Junior Achievement Global Board of Governors, as well as Chair of their Americas Board.
She has been married for over 38 years and has three children and three grandchildren.
Executive Director at Girls on the Run St. Louis
Courtney Berg, Executive Director, joined Girls on the Run St. Louis in October of 2011. However, her introduction to the organization began the Fall of 2003 as a coach for St. Gabriel the Archangel School in St. Louis. After teaching high school self-contained special education in Northern California for three years, Courtney arrived in St. Louis to begin her Masters in Social Work at the George Warren Brown School of Social Work at Washington University. An e-mail during orientation led Courtney to learn more about a program that “empowered girls through running.” The Girls on the Run team at St. Gabe’s was an enthusiastic, energetic group of girls that left a real impression upon Courtney; she focused her MSW studies upon culturally competent youth development programming and the impact of running as a therapeutic intervention.
Prior to joining Girls on the Run St. Louis, Courtney served as Director of Catholic Charities Southside Center for five years, overseeing the development and implementation of culturally competent programs and services at a community center serving more than 400 clients a month from across Eastern Missouri and Illinois. A bilingual (Spanish) Licensed Clinical Social Worker, her work focused upon meeting the needs of immigrant and refugee populations through comprehensives youth programming, mental health and social services. Courtney has served as an adjunct professor at the School of Social Work at Saint Louis University, as a community liaison for the Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis, and as a Spanish instructor at St. Louis Community College.
Courtney received her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Spanish from the University of Michigan and her Master of Social Work from the George Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis.
Deputy Mayor for Racial Equity and Priority Initiatives in St. Louis
Nicole Hudson has spent her career applying digital media to products in industries ranging from Broadway to finance to journalism to social justice. A Northwestern University grad, Nicole has managed the online brands for shows like Les Misérables and The Phantom of the Opera, worked on web development, ticketing and calendar conversion and ad network development with clients such as the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Lincoln Center and tackled online tools and branding for companies like the New Yorker and Goldman Sachs. On the ad agency side, she oversaw national digital campaigns and one-to-one marketing products for AT&T. She has managed web, print, outdoor and on-air production for TV and radio stations, hotels and real-estate developments.
Her 6 years on the business side of the non-profit start-up St. Louis Beacon gave her a front row seat for the opportunities and transformation in local information that digital platforms bring. Her work with the Ferguson Commission and its legacy non profit, Forward Through Ferguson, brought her career skills to bear on the most pressing issues of our time, which now continues with her role with the City of St. Louis. Prior to her work with the Ferguson Commission, Nicole consulted independently with individuals, organizations and brands on communication strategy, content development and the general navigation of digital waters.
Assistant Professor of Sociology at WashU
Caitlyn Collins is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Washington University in St. Louis. Her research examines the cultural and political production of inequality. She investigates how cultural attitudes and public policies intersect to shape people’s daily lives in vastly different ways depending on their social location. Specifically, Collins uses qualitative methods to understand the influence of public policies on gender inequality at work and in family life.
Her current project is a cross-national, comparative interview study of 135 working mothers in Sweden, Germany, Italy, and the United States. A book based on this research called Impossible Ideals: How Women Work and Care in Europe and America is under contract with Princeton University Press.