Blog

Announcing New Board Members and Leadership

July 31, 2017

WPTI’s Board of Directors elected three new members, along with a new Chair and Vice Chair this month. The three new members bring unique and accomplished backgrounds and skill sets that provide complementary competencies to the growing organization. The new Chair, Paul Ortega, and Vice Chair, Matt Harty, bring experience, expertise, and vast networks to their newly elevated roles on the Board with the proven ability to set and meet strategic benchmarks.

“As WPTI looks to establish our strategic vision and plan to better serve institutions that generate pathways out of poverty through employment in the future, it is imperative that we field committed leaders to help us guide and shape that vision,” said Sharon-Sewell Fairman, Executive Director of WPTI. “These newly elected members and appointed leaders provide our organization with the skills we need to grow and thrive.”

To the role of Board Chair, Paul Ortega, brings more than a more than 20 years of consulting, training and organizational development experience and has worked with Fortune 500 companies across a variety of industries. As the National Director of Training and Organizational Development at Swiss Post Solutions, Paul created and developed a training program that reaches 1600 employees throughout North America. WPTI is extremely honored to have Paul lead the organization to its next stage of evolution and growth.

“It is with great honor to lead a Board that navigates from a place of humility, trust, learning, and insightful business practice,” said Paul Ortega. “To achieve our vision and meet the demands of the future labor force, our Board will concentrate on strategic oversight and practices of good governance. The WPTI Board and staff pride ourselves in rethinking traditional structures to remain competitive in a rapidly changing world. This has been reflected in WPTI’s positive results with the many stakeholders, private and public, that provide job training and employment opportunities to our country’s workforce. With this strong foundation in place, I am excited to lead WPTI to even greater heights.”

To the role of Board Vice Chair, Matt Harty, brings expertise in nonprofit and social enterprise formation, strategy, and growth. He serves as the Co-Director of Social Enterprise at Columbia Business School, and leads their Senior Leaders Program for Nonprofit Professionals. WPTI is privileged to have his unique knowledge and skillset to advise the organizations as it looks to scale its impact.

See below for the bios for the newly elected Board members:

Andrew Fayad, CEO and Managing Partner, eLearning Mind

Andrew Fayad is the CEO and Managing Partner of eLearning Mind. He oversees sales, marketing, and strategic growth opportunities. eLearning Mind is an e-learning design and development agency that helps companies transform their existing learning materials into memorable and engaging e-learning experiences. By hiring talented graphic designers and motion graphic artists, eLearning Mind provides seamless project management and a unique, collaborative customer experience. Andrew’s entrepreneurial career has largely focused on building technology companies pioneering innovation in established industries. Experiencing a lack of user-centric corporate learning, he recognized a crucial need for companies to engage a changing and systemically disengaged workforce. By co-founding eLearning Mind in 2013, Andrew’s been helping some of the world’s largest brands like Google, General Electric, Tesla, Omnicom, and Ralph Lauren change the way they think about learning & talent development. Prior to eLearning Mind, Andrew led the Corporate Member Development Program at Axial, an online network for private markets founded in New York City. While completing his undergraduate degree at the University of Michigan, Andrew co-founded Olark, a live-chat SaaS solution based in Palo Alto, Calif. He is also a Y Combinator alumnus.

Harris Freier, Partner, Genova Burns – Attorneys-at-Law

Harris S. Freier, Partner in the Firm’s Newark, New Jersey office, is a member of the Employment Law & Litigation, Appellate, Hotel, Restaurant & Hospitality Industries, and Transportation, Trucking & Logistics Law Practice Groups. Mr. Freier litigates employment law cases regarding age, race, religion, gender, and disability discrimination before state and federal courts. He has significant class action experience litigating cases under ERISA, the Fair Labor Standards Act and state wage and hour laws. He also has experience with restrictive covenants including pre-invention assignment agreements. Mr. Freier has a strong traditional labor background, successfully handling two labor arbitrations for the City of New York and working on a variety of other labor matters involving plant closings and relocations, and employee grievances. He has committed a significant amount of time to pro bono representation, securing a victory before the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals in a prison abuse litigation. Mr. Freier has also provided employment counseling to a non-profit dance group. Mr. Freier has been rated AV® Preeminent™ in Labor and Employment Law by Martindale Hubbell, the world’s premier attorney listing resource. An AV Preeminent rating is the highest rating an attorney can receive from Martindale-Hubbell. Mr. Freier has been named a Rising Star since 2012 by the publishers of New Jersey Monthly and Super Lawyers®.

Lailany Sierra, Executive Director, HR Readiness, CHANEL

Lailany Sierra is currently the Executive Director, HR Readiness at CHANEL and is responsible for facilitating organizational transformation as the company implements a new Best-in-Class HR technology solution. Leveraging her extensive global experience in managing HR operations and system implementations, she serves as the Functional Lead for the project, leading the design, coordination and validation of future processes while challenging current practices and ways of working to evolve the strategic intent and the future HR Operating Model. Prior to joining CHANEL, Lailany Sierra was the Vice President of Human Resources at IgnitionOne, a digital marketing technology company with over 450 employees in 17 offices across 10 countries. Lailany was responsible for all global human capital programs and initiatives, ensuring that the HR practices implemented embraced the creative and entrepreneurial culture. Previously, Lailany spent 12 years in Human Resources leadership roles in the entertainment industry. Lailany was the Director of Human Resources for IMAX Corporation based in Los Angeles and prior to that spent nearly a decade at ESPN and The Walt Disney Company as an HR Business Partner supporting the media and entertainment divisions in the United States as well as Europe and Asia. Originally from New York City, Lailany spent time living in Buenos Aires, London, Hong Kong and Los Angeles before returning home in 2013. Lailany currently volunteers as a Career Coach at Dress for Success and was previously the Board Chair at L.O.V.E. (Latinas on the Verge of Excellence) Mentoring. Lailany also provides personalized career coaching services to women with a focus on empowering clients to reach her financial and professional potential. Lailany holds an MBA from the Zicklin School of Business, BBA from Baruch College, City University of New York and an Associate degree from Monroe College.

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