iDiverse Breakfast:
Diverse Digital Workforce 2020

New York, NY · 08.17.16
8:00 am EST - 10:00 am EST

iDiverse, the diversity initiative of the IAB Education Foundation, hosted a special event at the AOL offices in New York City on August 17, gathering diversity and HR professionals from IAB member companies, education partners, and non-profit organizations. The objective of iDiverse is to foster diversity in the digital advertising and media industry and to help build a skilled talent pipeline, champion diversity, and inclusion in your workplace.

iDiverse Breakfast Welcoming Remarks from Tim Armstrong, AOL, and Randall Rothenberg, IAB

Tim Armstrong, Chief Executive Officer, AOL, and Randall Rothenberg, President and CEO, IAB, welcomed a diverse audience at AOL offices in New York City on August 18. They announced the partnership between the IAB Education Foundation, its diversity initiative, iDiverse, and the Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC) to offer a digital training course preparing students for entry-level jobs in the digital media and marketing industry. They also encouraged HR and diversity professionals to commit to hiring diverse job seekers and to participate in the new Diversity & Inclusion Task Force that iDiverse is creating (

Then Twyla Perrin, People Advisor and Diversity & Inclusion Lead from AOL & Huffington Post and Maureen Jules-Perez, AOL, presented the new iDiverse Directory of over 500 non-profit organizations and explained how to work with non-profit organizations. Visit for more information.

Fixing the Pipelines—What Can Be Done

Freada Kapor Klein from the Kapor Center for Social Impact discussed “Fixing the Pipelines – What can be done” to improve the lack of diversity in the digital industry workforce. Visit to learn more about the iDiverse initiative and how to participate in this industry initiative along with digital leaders, including AOL, Facebook, Medialink, Microsoft, and Time Warner Cable Media.

iDiverse: Moving Forward—How iDiverse Will Help You

Karen Watai, President of KWA Leadership Consulting LLC, presented some solutions for Moving Forward—How iDiverse Will Help You foster diversity and inclusion in the digital workforce. Visit for more information.


8:00 am - 8:30 am

Breakfast and Networking

8:30 am - 8:40 am

Welcoming Remarks

8:40 am - 8:50 am

Diversity Commitments

8:50 am - 9:10 am

How to Work with Non-Profit Organizations?

9:10 am - 9:20 am

iDiverse Updates

9:20 am - 9:40 am

Fixing the Pipelines—What Can Be Done

9:40 am - 10:00 am

Moving Forward—How iDiverse Will Help You

10:00 am - 10:15 am

Q&A / Closing Remarks

Tim Armstrong
  • Tim Armstrong
  • Chief Executive Officer
  • Oath
Hide bio
View bio

Freada’’s work is at the intersection of racial/social justice and tech. As a Partner at Kapor Capital (, Freada Kapor Klein, Ph.D. invests in women entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs of color whose tech start-ups aspire to generate economic value and positive social impact.  Kapor Capital’s investment sectors include, but are not limited to, education, health, and consumer finance.  

Freada is the founder and Board Chair of the Level Playing Field Institute (, which promotes innovative approaches to fairness in higher education and workplaces. The Institute’s Summer Math and Science Honors Academy (SMASH), a three-summer high school program serving under-represented students of color, is in the process of scaling nationally.  The Academy works to ensure racial equity within the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.  

The Institute’s workplace programs have conducted landmark research, including the 2011 study The Tilted Playing Field: Hidden Bias in IT Workplaces. Freada’s book Giving Notice: Why the Best and the Brightest Leave the Workplace and How You Can Help Them Stay (Jossey-Bass 2007) combines quantitative research on who leaves corporate America and why, with stories of day-to-day experiences detailing the human and financial cost.

Freada co-founded the first organization in the U.S. to address sexual harassment in 1976. She holds a Ph.D. in Social Policy and Research, and has conducted many large survey projects on perceptions and experiences of bias, harassment, and disrespectful treatment in workplaces.

Her first job in tech was as the first head of Employee Relations, Organizational Development, and Management Training at Lotus Development Corporation. Her job description was to make Lotus the most progressive employer in the U.S. Lotus 1-2-3 is widely recognized as the “killer app” that made the personal computer ubiquitous in business.

A frequent speaker (some of her 2014 engagements include presentations at: Asana, Generation Investment Management Women’s Leadership Summit, RAND Corp., Twilio, Twitter, and Women 2.0), Freada is also quoted and written about in the media (examples from 2014 include: New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, National Public Radio, Huffington Post, Bloomberg, San Francisco Chronicle, and San Jose Mercury News).

Freada is also a Co-Chair of the Kapor Center for Social Impact ( and an Advisory Trustee of the U.C. Berkeley Foundation.

Hide bio
View bio

Twyla is the HR Lead and People Advisor for The Huffington Post and also oversees the Diversity & Inclusion program for AOL. She joined The Huffington Post family in July 2011 and advises on various activities including new acquisitions. She’s also held various Human Resources positions in other media outlets, such as The Boston Globe and The New York Times.

In her career, she has implemented diversity initiatives, driven organizational-people strategies and talent development. Early in her career she focused on student leadership, where she led The Boston Globe’s internship program, managed development and participated in career coaching for more than 300 students. She participated in pipeline initiatives with the INROADS and Howard University, in addition to facilitating cultural-emersion programs at The Boston Globe.

Today, she partners with Huffington Post leaders to maintain a positive work environment, high employee engagement and work life balance. In addition, she partners with AOLers to drive an inclusion environment. Furthermore, she implemented a multi-year AOL D&I strategy, formed a cross-AOL Diversity Council, implemented a successful diversity internship program, and oversees the strategic community partnership such as Year Up and IAB Education foundation on the iDiverse job development program.

Twyla grew up in New Jersey, and holds a Bachelors Degree in Communications Studies from Northeastern University. She is also a certified Senior Human Resources Professional and an active member of the Society for Human Resources Management. In her spare time, Twyla mentors students personally and professionally. She lives in New Jersey with her husband.

Hide bio
View bio
Randall Rothenberg - Staff

Randall Rothenberg is the president and CEO of Interactive Advertising Bureau, the trade association for interactive marketing in the United States. The IAB represents over 600 leading media, marketing and technology companies. Its members include Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, AOL, The New York Times, Walt Disney Co., NBC Universal, CBS,, and scores of other ad-supported digital companies, which are responsible for selling more than 86% of online advertising in the U.S. To support the growth of the interactive advertising and marketing industries, the IAB serves as the industry’s public policy and lobbying organization, market and consumer research center, training and development base, and hub for the development of technical standards and operating best practices. IAB has 45 affiliate associations around the world.

Mr. Rothenberg led IAB from 2007 through 2010, and rejoined the association in March 2011, after a stint as Executive Vice President and Chief Digital Officer of Time Inc. Prior to his IAB role, Mr. Rothenberg was the Senior Director of Intellectual Capital of Booz Allen Hamilton, the international strategy and technology consulting firm, where he oversaw business development, knowledge management, and thought leadership activities, and directed the award-winning business journal strategy+business, Strategy+Business Books,, and other electronic and print publications published by Booz Allen for senior business executives. Previously, he served as the firm’s Chief Marketing Officer.

Prior to Booz Allen, Mr. Rothenberg spent six years at The New York Times, where he was the technology editor and politics editor of the Sunday magazine, the daily advertising columnist, and a media and marketing reporter. For 10 years, he was a marketing and media columnist for Advertising Age. Mr. Rothenberg is the author of Where the Suckers Moon: An Advertising Story (Alfred A. Knopf, 1994), a critically-acclaimed chronicle of the birth, evolution, and death of a single advertising campaign.

Mr. Rothenberg received an undergraduate degree in Classics from Princeton University and currently lives in New York City.

  • Social:
Hide bio
View bio
Michael Theodore 1
  • Michael Theodore
  • Senior Vice President, Learning & Development
  • IAB
  • General Manager, IAB Education Foundation

Like many digital immigrants, Michael started his career in traditional media, with a 15 year stint in local and network television news and radio. After graduating with an MBA from Harvard, he worked as a management consultant in Arthur D. Little’s Media and Entertainment practice. That led to his introduction to the Internet, upon which he served as GM at both CitySearch and For the past 12 years he has served in a variety of senior management positions with industry trade associations, including the New York New Media Association, Connecticut Technology Council, and the Interactive Advertising Bureau, where he is currently VP, Training & Development and is responsible for the Digital Media Sales Certification program and professional development workshops.

Hide bio
View bio

Karen J. Watai is the President of KWA Leadership Consulting LLC, a firm which specializes in executive coaching, facilitation, and customized training. She has worked closely with her clients to develop their personal and organizational leadership through the innovative design of results-oriented practices and learning experiences.

In addition to the broader leadership arena, Karen focuses on the specific challenges of personal and organizational leadership in environments characterized by a diversity of cultures, gender, and work styles. She collaborates with Professor David A. Thomas on programs based on his book Breaking Through – the Making of Minority Executives in Corporate America. One of these programs received an International Innovation in Diversity Award from Profiles in Diversity Journal.

Karen has coached and/or trained individuals from a variety of organizations including Goldman Sachs, New York Life, Kaplan Inc., Comcast, Prudential, HSBC, BET Networks, Tory Burch, DLA Piper, and Harlem RBI. Her coaching clients include Executives, Partners, Vice Presidents, and managers of corporations, professional services firms, hedge funds, and non-profits. She has also been a coach for the Global Institute for Leadership Development and Harvard Business School Executive Education.

Prior to founding KWA Leadership Consulting LLC, Karen spent almost 20 years in the investment banking and private equity industries. She was a Vice President at Goldman Sachs where she executed transactions in the Private Finance Department and was a relationship manager in the Capital Markets Department. She also worked in the Management Development and Training Department where she designed, developed and delivered major initiatives including mentoring, diversity, compliance, and business programs. Karen left Goldman Sachs to become a partner in the Exeter Group of Funds, a private mezzanine and equity investment firm.

Karen holds a J.D. and M.B.A. from the University of Chicago, as well as an A.B. from Harvard University. She has received the Master Certified Coach designation, the highest credential awarded by the International Coach Federation. She is certified in the Hogan Assessment Systems, the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, and the PDI Profilor. KWA Leadership Consulting LLC is certified as a Minority Business Enterprise.

Hide bio
View bio