Gender Diversity in the Boardrooms
Key Driver to Company Performance


President, PWN Romania
Sorana Baciu is a Senior Executive with 20 years’ experience in private and public field, as well as extensive knowledge of general management, corporate strategy and corporate finance. Currently, she is non-executive director for the largest gas producer in Romania, Romgaz, and the Chair of the Audit Committee.
Sorana had an international career in investment and commercial banking (within ING Bank and Porsche Finance Group Romania), as well as in oil & gas (within OMV Petrom S.A). In October 2014, Sorana set up a consultancy practice focusing on business performance improvement, change management & turnaround, and investment advisory. Sorana graduated the Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest, Romania with an M.A. in International Economic Relations, as well as McGill University in Montreal, Canada with a M.A in Economic Policy Management. Sorana Baciu is a committed civic activist and holds different positions within non-profit organisations.
Ambassador, UK Embassy in Romania
Paul Brummell is the British Ambassador to Romania since 2014. Before that, he worked as the British High Commissioner to Barbados, from 2009 to 2013.
With a MA in Geography from St Albans School St Catharine’s College, Cambridge, Paul Brummell started his career at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) in 1987, as a Desk Officer in Research Department and then South America Department. His diplomatic career includes titles such as HM Ambassador to Turkmenistan in 2002, HM Ambassador to Kazakhstan, and concurrently non-resident Ambassador to Kyrgyzstan in 2005.
Dragoș Bucurenci
Communication Strategist and Coach
Dragoş Bucurenci is a communication coach, a journalist and civic activist. During the past year, he served as Communication Adviser to the European Commissioner for Regional Policy. Before getting his MBA from Stanford University, Dragoș built two of Romania's most prominent NGOs, Save the Danube Delta and MaiMultVerde.
He trained more than 1,000 managers in public speaking, interpersonal communication and storytelling, and was awarded “Best Training of the Year” at the Business-Edu Awards Gala in 2010.
He has twelve years of experience as a columnist for national newspapers and magazines, and has produced and presented TV shows for public and private TV channels for over seven years.
Ioana Cazacu
Secretary of State,Department of Gender Equality
Mrs. Cazacu started her professional career working as Head of cabinet at Parliamentary Office, followed by an international experience gathered at the European Parliament where she acted as counselor.
In 2009, Mrs. Cazacu was appointed as Secretary of State within the Department of Relations with the Parliament of Romania, department within the Romanian Government.
Before joining the Department, she was member of Board Member, acting as Secretary of State, for the National Council for Combating Discrimination (NCCD) (2010-2014). The Steering Board of NCCD is a collective and deliberative body responsible for the tasks provided by law. It is made up of 9 members having the rank of Secretary of State.
Sotiris Chatzidakis
Executive Vice President of CEO Clubs International
Sotiris is the Executive Vice President of CEO Clubs International in Romania and the founder of Netx Gen Int’l. Under his leadership, both Clubs have become among the biggest and most important business Clubs in the country, having as members the leaders of some of the largest companies in Romania and in the SEE region (50-€60 mil turnover & employing more than 500 people on average, each). Previously he had been the General Manager for the CEO Clubs in Greece, that being the first Club ever to be launched in Europe. He also has held various executive positions in banking, technology and FMCG market leading companies, heading major projects in Greece and abroad.
In parallel, Sotiris is also the founder and Managing Partner of SARGIA Partners – Romania, pursuing his goal to positively influence leadership on a large scale. He is a certified Master Coach by the Center for Advanced Coaching (CAC) in the USA.
Sotiris is a firm believer of ecosystems and a start-up enthusiast. Connecting people with ideas or other people is one of his passions. He embraces sharing, continuous learning, openness and trust, as they are the keys to constant and sustainable development.
Sotiris holds a Bachelor’s degree in Management & Organizational behavior and 2 Master’s (International Marketing & an MBA) degrees.
His articles have been published in magazines and newspapers such as “Economist’s Intelligent Life”, Forbes, Business Review, Cariere magazine, and many others.
He adores listening to “You can’t do that” and that’s how it usually starts.
Gilles Clavie
President of the Management Board & CEO of Orbis SA
Gilles Clavie began his professional career as a consolidation and group financial reporting Manager in Eridania Beghin-Say in 1993. He joined Accor Group in Paris in 2001 as Reporting Director for the business and leisure hotels segment. He held a position of a Financial Controller in Accor in the years 2004 through 2010.
Gilles Clavie joined Orbis S.A. as a member of the Executive Committee of the Company in January 2011. He has been responsible for strategy, management control, IT systems implementation and asset management. Gilles Clavie also created and has been heading a Property Management Committee which concentrated on in-depth analysis of various investment projects as regards development, asset management, construction and maintenance. He was appointed a President of the Management Board & CEO of Orbis SA on June 27th 2014.
Dana Deac
The 26 years of television and radio career recommends Dana Deac as being a fine and profound connoisseur of communication techniques, an incisive communicator and an opinion former respected by both the industry and the audience.
Since April 2013 she is president of The Romanian Orange Foundation’s Board of Directors.
In January of 2010 Avantaje magazine awarded her the title “Woman of Year 2009 for Responsibility and Social Involvement”.
Dana Deac held the position of Executive Director of the public television station TVR 1 (2007-2014). Currently, she's working as a producer and senior journalist with TVR 1. Between 1998 and 2006 she was reporter, producer, executive producer and anchor at the private TV stations Antena 1 and Antena 3.
Dana Deac received the highest award of the Association of Romanian Television Professionals for the show „Reporter Tele7” in 1997, the APTR award for the morning show „Cafeaua cu sare” in 2005, the APTR award for social campaigns in 2003, the award “Report of the Year 2000” from the Romanian Press Club.
Dana Deac has been awarded the highest honors of the Romanian Royal House by King Michael the First of Romania: "Nihil Sine Deo" and "Crucea Casei Regale a Romaniei".
Dana Deac is a graduate of the History and Philosophy Faculty, Philosophy-History Section, part of the Bucharest University.
Senior Lecturer, Queen Mary University, UK
Elena is a lecturer and researcher whose expertise is in the field of gender and leadership, with an emphasis on diversity on corporate boards, and the processes influencing women’s progression to leadership roles.
For several years, she has co-authored the Cranfield Female FTSE Board Report, the premier UK census on women on boards. Elena also led research examining the adoption of the Voluntary Search Code by executive search firms recruiting boards directors, sponsored by the Equality and Human Rights Commission and launched by the 30% Club in London.
Her work has been published in several edited books, practitioner reports and academic journals, and she is a regular speaker at international academic and practitioner conferences. In 2013, Elena acted as the academic expert for Women on Boards UK on the European Parliament’s consultation held by the Committee on Women’s rights and Gender Equality. She is a member of the Academy of Management and the British Academy of Management and was a Fulbright scholar at Northwestern University, USA. As a business psychologist, Elena has been involved in diversity management and leadership development programs in several countries.
Chief Operating Officer, Accor HotelServices Benelux
Caro van Eekelen holds a Bachelor in Hospitality Management from the Hospitality Business School (Hogere Hotel School) in The Hague (1987). She began her career in 1986 with Golden Tulip International where she performed in various roles and established hotels in the Caribbean, Ghana, The Netherlands and France. In 1992 Caro joined the Disneyland Resort in Paris. During her 14 years there she had a number of Top positions in Operations, HR and Finance.
In 2006 she founded her own Hospitality Management consultancy in Paris under the name of CVE.
From 2007 to 2009 she worked with Adagio City Aparthotel in Paris where she was responsible for extending the business to include 30 Aparthotels in all major cities of Europe. In 2009 Caro van Eekelen became the first female country director at Accor in The Netherlands and was subsequently appointed Senior Vice President Novotel & Suite Novotel for the Benelux and the UK. As of January 2014 she fulfils the role of COO Accor HotelServices Benelux (scope 116 hotels). She is also a member of the Supervisory Board of Stenden Hogeschool and the Blooming Foundation.
Non-Executive Board Member, Electrica Distributie Transilvania Sud
Simona Fătu is an experienced manager standing for more than 8 years in the management boards and board of directors of large companies from the financial sector, energy and mining. She has extensive experience in corporate finance, corporate governance and corporate strategy. Simona graduated the Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest and pursued, for roughly 18 years, a corporate banking and investment banking carrier (within Raiffeisen and Volksbank groups). Simona joined the Professional Women’s Network Global, Romania division aiming to increase women awareness for board positions and to support their nomination in the board of directors of public companies (state owned as well as listed companies).
Head of Representation of the European Commission in Romania
In 2014 Ms Angela Filote took office as Head of the Representation of the European Commission in Romania. With over 20 years of experience in institutional communication management, Ms Filote worked in Romania, Turkey and Egypt, and as of 2010, she worked at the European Commission in Brussels. Ms Filote studied economics, political sciences and European affairs. In 1993, she took a Master's Degree in Philosophy, with a major in international relations, at the University of Amsterdam.
In 1993, Ms Filote was selected to build the Press and Information Department of the new Diplomatic Representation of the European Commission in Romania. In 2006, she moved to Ankara, in Turkey, where she put into practice her experience in the EU pre-accession process when managing the main communication project of the EU Delegation in this country. Later on, she worked as Deputy Head of the EU Delegation in Egypt.
In 2010, Ms Filote became one of the spokespersons of the European Commission, responsible for the EU Enlargement and the Neighbourhood Policy. As of 2011, Ms Filote worked for the General Directorate for Agriculture and Rural Development, where she was Head of the Communication Department and prepared the information campaign on the EU-wise Reform of the Common Agricultural Policy.
Alina Fugaciu
President WAAG Romania
Alina Fugaciu has joined AccorHotels in 2003, with the first experience in the hospitality field within Sofitel Bucharest (actual Pullman Bucharest World Trade Center). After 7 years of sales and marketing experience within two of the group’s hotels in Bucharest (Sofitel and Novotel), Alina decided to make a further change in her career, by embracing an operational opportunity. While being accepted in 2013 for a hospitality management program (IHMP) done by Essec Business School in France in partnership by AccorHotels, she also accepted the challenge to work abroad for MGallery Prague, an upscale hotel part of AccorHotels network, as Operations manager. As of July 2014 Alina was given the chance to be part of the pre-opening team of Mercure Bucharest City center and has been promoted as General Manager for the first Mercure hotel in Bucharest and in Romania. Apart of the operational and strategy responsibilities for the hotel, she has been also appointed as of May 2016 as President of WAAG Romania, the group’s internal association counting today more than 3000 members worldwide, with the main goal of overcome gender stereotypes and promote gender equality within AccorHotels, particularly in managerial positions.
Iwona Georgijew
Partner, Diversity & Inclusion Leader, Deloitte CEE
During more than 20 years of professional career, Iwona has gained experience and become leading Polish tax advisor.
Iwona leads Deloitte’s transfer pricing team which is a market leader with 35+% share in all APAs concluded in Poland constantly since the introduction of the APA programme in 2006).
Iwona has authored numerous tax advisory publications for professional magazines. She is a regular speaker at international transfer pricing conferences and seminars. Since 2006, she has been regularly recognized by Euromoney/Legal Media Guide as one of the World’s Leading Transfer Pricing Advisers. The transfer pricing team led by Iwona won 2014 and 2015 ITR awards “Transfer Pricing Firm of the Year – Poland” and 2015 “Transfer Pricing Firm of the Year – Central Europe”.
Iwona is also actively engaged in executive coaching and women’s leadership development. She is the Diversity Leader of Deloitte Central Europe and leads SheXO Club, a programme for development, networking and growth of women in senior executive positions.
Laurel Herman
VP Diversity & Inclusion, SODEXO, FRANCE
Acknowledged as a thought-leader, an entrepreneur and an expert in every aspect of personal effectiveness, Laurel is a sought-after accomplished speaker at all types of business and lifestyle events and a regular contributor to the media. Recognised as a seasoned graduate in Life and its challenges, an image doyenne and an information resource, she is also sometimes invited to tell her own story or give advice as motivation and inspiration to others.
As a family-bound but stylish young wife and mother, Laurel came up with a unique concept for selling clothes to women 'without meaning to'. Having trained as a statistician, she never had any desire to be in business. Unwittingly, Concept Shopping soon became very successful bringing with it a strong media profile for Laurel as a role model for working women and an appearance expert who walks her talk.
Recognising the importance of positive image, she equally identified a need for an 'intelligent’ approach to it. Using her natural talents and years of experience combined with her innate emotional intelligence, high integrity and strong people values, she founded a landmark new business in 1994. Positive Presence immediately developed an impressive reputation as the intelligent image consultancy for intelligent people. With its intelligent approach, philosophy and process, it soon attracted many prestigious organisations as well as men and women as individuals.
Satu Heschung
VP Diversity & Inclusion, SODEXO, FRANCE
Satu Heschung is VP Global Diversity and Inclusion at Group Sodexo with over 6 years experience of implementing D&I strategy successfully by designing and developing internal D&I programs.
Satu is Finnish and joined Sodexo as a Project Manager in 2001. Currently Satu is responsible for D&I in 4 regions in Europe: Nordic, Mediterranean, DACH and Central and Eastern Europe regions as well as in Sport & Leisure Segment at Sodexo, where she supports business by transforming the global strategy into regional priorities and practical actions.
Satu is also leading Sodexo’s Global Gender Inclusion initiatives; including managing the senior advisory board SWIFt. Furthermore she is responsible for D&I learning and development initiatives as well as for D & I effectiveness measurements globally.
She was one of the first training managers designing a state certified “Hotel and Restaurant service” program targeted to multicultural students in Finland in 1995.
She is passionate about influencing positive change, optimizing the intercultural differences and leveraging D&I as part of the quality of life.
Satu is a graduate of the University of Jyväskylä, Finland in Vocational teacher education and she has also a degree in Hospitality Management.
Satu likes to discover new horizons and explore unknown. Satu is an active mother of Emilie (21y) and Matts (17y) and a real outdoor person.
Ambassador, Swedish Embassy in Romania
Anneli Lindahl Kenny graduated in Law from Uppsala University and did a clerkship program in the District Court and Prosecution Authority of Stockholm. Ms Lindahl Kenny joined the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs in 1983. She has been posted in Manila, Paris, Windhoek, the Swedish UN delegation in Geneva and Nairobi and has also been Secretary to the Foreign Affairs Committee in the Swedish Parliament. Her last posting before Romania was as Ambassador to Bangladesh
Adriana Lobda
Partner Deloitte ROMANIA
Adriana Lobda has been a Partner at the Firm since 2010. She has over 17 years of experience in financial audit and she is the partner in charge with Deloitte office in Cluj Napoca. As audit partner, Adriana is in charge with coordination of audit missions to a wide range of clients, from medium size companies to large size companies, operating in different industries, such as: manufacturing, construction, real estate, public administration, pharma, etc.
Executive Master of Business Administration- The Institute for Business Administration in Bucharest (Sept 2007- 2009)
Educational Background
Master of the Academy of Economic Studies of Bucharest (1990 -1995)
Faculty: International Economic Trade
Member of the Association of chartered certified Accountants in UK (ACCA)
Member of the association of Romanian Evaluators(ANEVAR)
Member of Chartered Accountants in Romania (CECCAR)
Member of Romanian Chamber of Financial Auditors( CAFR)
Certified project manager, Certified train- the - trainer
Certified European Funds Expert
CEO & Executive Board Member, Nuclearelectrica
Daniela Lulache is economist by profession, having graduated from Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies in 1993. She continued to improve her expertise in economics by earning diplomas in corporate finance and restructuring, structured financial products, brokerage, and strategic management, management of change and principles of communication.
Daniela Lulache held strategic top management positions over the years in both private and state-owned sectors that required high level expertise in financial management due to their inherent complexity.
Before being recruited for the position of General Manager of Nuclearelectrica in 2013, Daniela Lulache occupied the position of Counselor of the Vice-Governor of the National Bank of Romania with responsibilities in structuring the contingency plan in case of commercial banks default while previously to this position she was General Manager and President of the Board of Directors of Fondul Proprietatea (Property Fund), managing the entire activity of the Fund (Euro 4 bill. investment fund) including startup, establishment of corporate structure and corporate governance, investment strategy design and implementation, portfolio management.
In addition, Daniela Lulache has a long and rich experience in banking and financial consulting sectors, holding throughout the years important management positions.
In May of 2013, Daniela Lulache was recruited as Chief Executive Officer of Nuclearelectrica (the only nuclear energy producer in Romania) as part of the Government’s strategy to apply corporate governance to state-owned companies.
Mihai Marcu
Chairman of the Board, Medlife, Romania
Mihai Marcu is the President of the Board of MedLife. He entered the true entrepreneurs league when he took the lead of MedLife, a business founded in 1996 by his mother, the pediatrician Mihaela Marcu Cristesc. Under his leadership, the private operator of health services experienced a significant development. In a single year, 2011, MedLife has invested over 35 million euros - a record in the company history. With new clinics, eight test laboratories, six hospitals, three maternity hospitals and six pharmacies in its portfolio, Medlife is one of the strongest players in the medical field.
Regional Manager EU8 and Moldova, IFC

Ana Maria Mihăescu is currently the IFC Regional Manager for Romania, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Moldova, Poland and Slovakia for the International Finance Corporation. Between 1997 and 2011 she was Program Manager, Chief of Mission for Romania and Moldova and Chief Resident Representative within the same institution.
Before joining the IFC, Ms. Mihăescu was President of Eximbank (1996-1997), where she previously held the following positions: Vice President (External refinancing facilities and export credits insurance division) between 1994 and 1996; General Director of the Insurance and Reinsurance Department; member of the Board and the Inter-ministerial Committee for Loans and Guarantees for Foreign Trade (1991-1992). Ana Maria Mihăescu was Project Officer for the financial sector for the World Bank Resident Mission in Romania (1993-1994) and Deputy Director of the Romania Bank for Development (1990-1991). She holds a degree from the Academy of Economic Studies, Faculty of International Economic Relations.
President of the Supervisory Board, SN Transelectrica
Carmen Neagu is an reputed energy industry expert, President of Transelectrica’s Supervisory Board, since May 2014.
From January 2014 she become shareholder and CEO for Peria Capital SRL , being responsible for the company development as key cosultancy player for business and management in the region with a special focus on capital conveing activities for Romania and SEE.
Carmen has built a long career within the Energy sector in Romanian companies and multinationals. From September 2005 to December 2012, as GE Energy Region Executive South East Europe she was responsible of the entire range of GE Energy products and services in the region. Up to 2005 she was involved in strategic development of the Romanian power system, within ELCEN, Termoelectrica and Electricity National Company and has held various top management positions in the fields of strategy and international affairs in power generation during the Romanian Energy Sector restructuring process. In 1998, she became EU Phare Program expert in energy investment management.
Carmen Neagu graduated 1982, from Polytechnic University of Bucharest with a M.E. degree in thermo-energy engineering. She is very active in different business and professional organisation and also as volunteer along with organisations as Junior Achievement sustaining the development of the educational system in the region and women career development.

VP Women on Boards, PWN Romania
Virginia is senior executive with more than 20 years’ experience in Romanian financial field. She served in management boards and boards of directors within financial institutions as a front-runner and an inspirational leader.
Virginia completed her postgraduate studies in Management and Public Administration within the National School of Political and Administrative Studies in Bucharest and was granted a Master’s degree diploma in Management and Public Administration after graduating the University of Liverpool, United Kingdom in 1993. Virginia participated as speaker and panelist on many national and international conferences and seminars.  In 1999, she graduated the Executive MBA within the Romanian-American Postgraduate School of Business in cooperation with the University of Washington, USA. In 2011, Virginia joined the Professional Women’s Network Global, Romania division, being involved in programs such as “Women on Boards” and “Mentorship” developed by the association. In April 2014, she was elected Vice President of “Women on Boards” of PWN Romania.
Director for Romania, EBRD
Matteo Patrone has over 20 years of experience in finance and industry. In 2008 he joined the Corporate Equity team of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development where he was supervising equity transactions with a focus on Western Balkans, Poland and Russian Federation.From October 2012 to July 2015 he was the Director of EBRD Resident Office in Serbia where the Bank has a portfolio of 2.4 Bn Eur.
Prior to the EBRD he was the Managing Director of the private equity arm of Finanziaria Internazionale, an Italian merchant bank, where he spent 10 years investing in a broad range of sectors.
Before that, he was a Senior Manager of Accenture Strategic Services in Milan and worked as project engineer and export sales manager in ENI and Finmeccanica groups in the UK and Italy. He holds an MBA from Insead and an MS degree cum laude in Mechanical Engineering from Genoa University.
Octavian Pantis
Managing Director, Qualians
Octavian Pantis is a successful speaker, consultant and author.
His book Musai List and audiobooks Change Management, Practical Leadership and Time Management have become best-sellers and have helped thousands of professional men and women find balance in their lives and achieve higher levels of productivity at work.
As a Founder and Managing Director of TMI Romania, he has grown the company to a well respected status, earning twice the "Training Company of the Year" award and a few more awards for himself, such as the distinguished Award for Training by Revista Cariere at it’s 10 year anniversary, for “The High Standard and Passion Brought to the Training Industry in Romania”.
Since 2014 Octavian is leading Qualians, an umbrella of premium learning and development brands, helping companies thrive in what is referred to as the New Normal. Besides TMI, Qualians is proud to represent Harvard Business Publishing, Silega Business Simulations, LEGO Serious Play as well as Ecoxtrem – the largest outdoor teambuilding company in Romania.
His time outside work is dedicated to family.
Coordinating Partner, Deloitte Romania
Oana Petrescu has been a partner at the Firm since 2012. She has over 20 years of experience in FSI market in Romania and other Central and South European countries. Currently she is the Financial Services Industry leader of Deloitte Romania and Partner-in-charge of the Consulting practice. Prior to Deloitte, Oana was the Retail Board Member/ previously COO of the leading bank in Romania, after having established and developed the FSI consulting practice in Romania of another Big4 company. Educational Background
Academy of Economic Studies, Bucharest - degree in finance, banking and accounting
European Business School, London, Studies of European Business Administration
Universite des Sciences Sociales, Toulouse, post graduate degree (DESS) in European finance and banking
Lead Public Sector Specialist, World Bank
Ismail Radwan is a lead public sector specialist in the World Bank. He has been based in Bucharest since July 2015.
From 2012-2015 Ismail was the Country Program Coordinator for Central Europe and the Baltic Countries in the World Bank's European and Central Asia department, based in Washington D.C. During that time, Ismail lead the Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) which programs the World Bank Group’s engagement with Romania during the period 2014-2018. Prior to taking up this assignment in 2012 he was based in Nigeria where he led the Bank’s work in innovation, finance and private sector development. Between 2005-2008 Ismail was based in Colombo, Sri Lanka where he managed a number of high profile projects for the Bank including the e-Sri Lanka initiative.
Ismail studied economics and politics at Oxford University and then received a masters degree from the University of Pennsylvania. He has lived and worked in more than thirty countries. Prior to joining the World Bank in 2000, Ismail was a principal consultant with PricewaterhouseCoopers London in the economics and strategy department. Ismail is originally from Cairo Egypt and speaks English, Arabic and French.
Iuliana Roibu is a media professional, with 13 years relevant experience in business journalism, editorial strategy, and horizontal development for media brands. Her experience spans around the most powerful business media brands on the local market. Currently working as a deputy editor-in-chief for Business Magazin, part of Mediafax Group, she is also involved in various projects related to brand communication and content development.
Founder & Managing Partner, Global Compact Network, Romania
Dragos is the Founder and General Manager of The CSR Agency. He is also the General Manager of Global Compact Network Romania.
He founded, in 2011, the first Sustainability consulting agency in Romania. He was involved in numerous CSR campaigns such as ?ara lui Andrei for Petrom, Umbrela Verde for Tuborg, or the release of (the first Romanian CSR portal).
In 2014, he launched The CSR Report - the first magazine specialized in analyzing companies' sustainability reports.
Dragos is a certified CSR Trainer. He delivered over 60 training sessions, conferences and workshops for Executive Mangers and CSR coordinators in Romania.