2017 Keynote and Panelists

Keynote address: Chris Yeh 


Our 2017 keynote address was a live interview with Chris Yeh, the co-founder and General Partner of Wasabi Ventures. Chris also founded, advised, or invested in over 100 high-tech startups since 1995.  He is the co-author, along with Reid Hoffman and Ben Casnocha, of the New York Times bestseller, The Alliance: Managing Talent in the Networked Age, and the co-founder of Allied Talent, the official provider of The Alliance Framework for helping organizations better recruit, engage, and retain entrepreneurial employees.  Chris earned two degrees from Stanford University and an MBA from Harvard Business School where he was named a Baker Scholar.

The HR Symposium's very own Bindu Garapaty conducted the interview with Chris, during which he shared his insights on employee experience and company culture. As the authors offer in The Alliance, the employer-employee relationship is broken, but it can be fixed by viewing employees as "free agents" who are "allies in a tour of duty." 

Follow Chris Yeh on Twitter.


Dawn Sharifan

Dawn Sharifan, Slack Technology

Dawn considers herself a life-long learner and passionate student. She says, "I believe HR is truly a craft and a career to be proud of pursuing."  Dawn has over 15 years experience in both public and private organizations, working with start-ups and fortune 500 companies. Her industry experience includes legal and financial services, tech, media, and renewable energy.

Dawn currently leads People Operations at Slack Technology. Since 2014, she's been teaching aspiring HR professionals at San Francisco State University, reminding them that "HR does not have to suck." She earned an MBA from St. Mary's and a pilot's license from the FAA. Dawn lives in the East Bay with her best friend/husband and Mini, the cat, who is also a very good friend. 

About Slack:
Slack is a collaboration tool that brings together all team communications together in one place, instantly searchable and available wherever you go. Launched in February 2014, it is now one of the fastest growing B2B applications and is used by over 4 million daily active users. 


Liane Hornsey

Liane Hornsey, Uber Technologies

Liane is Chief Human Resources Officer at Uber Technologies, Inc. She leads efforts in scaling Uber’s entrepreneurial, start-up culture across more than 60 global offices.

Previously, Liane was the Chief Administrative Officer and Operating Partner of Softbank Group International where she helped a number of portfolio companies hire diverse and high-performing employees. Before SoftBank, Liane spent nearly a decade at Google, where she led People Operations for Global Business and became Google’s first female Vice President in HR.  

Outside of work, Liane is the proud mom of two children and regularly runs half marathons.

About Uber:
Founded in 2009, Uber was described by Business Insider as the most valuable startup in the U.S. Uber is a worldwide online transportation network company whose service is available in over 66 countries and 545 cities worldwide.


Kelli Dragovich

Kelli Dargovich, Hired

Kelli is the Senior Vice President of People at Hired, where she leads the team responsible for enabling Hired to rapidly grow and scale effectively. She is passionate about building a diverse, inclusive, and productive environment for Hired’s growing global workforce, and has spent nearly two decades in people operations and HR at leading tech companies. Prior to Hired, Kelli was Vice President of Human Resources for GitHub, and has previously held senior Human Resource positions at Nook Media, RockYou!, Yahoo!, and Intuit.

Kelli is a mother of twin boys and the ultimate sports enthusiast. She has even competed as an amateur boxer! She attended Santa Clara University where she played Division I softball and graduated with a degree in Psychology before going on to receive a Masters in Organizational Psychology from Alliant International University in San Diego.

About Hired:
Founded in 2012, Hired describes itself as a career marketplace for the world’s knowledge workers. Described by Business Insider as one of the most valuable enterprise start-ups of 2016.


Margaret Wheeler

Margo Wheeler, Stitch Fix

Margaret and her team create an inspiring and rewarding experience for all Stitch Fix employees through hiring, developing, and retaining incredible talent. She is committed to building an environment where every employee can generate the culture and be their best self. She is responsible for extending Stitch Fix’s unique company culture to more than 5,000 employees, across three corporate offices, five warehouse locations and ten remote styling hubs throughout the United States.

Prior, Margaret was Senior Vice President of People Potential at Lululemon Athletica, and she spent 15 years with Starbucks Coffee Company as the vice president of global learning. While at Starbucks, Margaret also held leadership roles in partner resources, employer brand, internal talent and strategic sourcing. Margaret was also a regional training manager at The Body Shop for more than two years.

Margaret has a bachelor’s degree in Humanistic Studies and English Literature from St. Mary’s College in South Bend, Indiana and a master’s degree in Anglo-Irish Literature from University College in Dublin, Ireland. Margaret has spoken at SXSW and The Human Capital Conference and she’s been featured on Inc.

About Stitch Fix:
Founded in 2011, Stitch Fix is the personal styling service tailored to your taste, budget, and lifestyle that helps both men and women discover the apparel and accessories that they love. Their goal is to make shopping easy and enjoyable.


Britt Sellin

Britt Sellin, Cloudera

Britt is responsible for leading the human resources function at Cloudera, including talent management, training and development, strategic workforce planning, recruiting, compensation and benefits, and diversity initiatives. She ensures that “Clouderans” have a meaningful and rewarding work experience, influencing the company culture by reflecting the very best of open source: being collaborative, communicative, and open.

Prior to joining Cloudera, Britt held a variety of senior HR positions at VMware and Sun Microsystems while those companies experienced significant growth. Britt holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of California, Berkeley. Britt is passionate about ‘giving back’ to the community and is the executive sponsor of Cloudera Cares, the company’s employee-led and run philanthropic arm.

About Cloudera: 
Founded in 2008, Cloudera delivers the modern platform for data management and analytics. Cloudera has won numerous awards and accolades from industry watchdogs such as Database Trends and Applications Magazine, Information Week, Forbes, and Glassdoor.com. 


Jeff Diana - Moderator

Jeff Diana, Moderator

Jeff Diana, a popular 2016 HR Symposium panelist, is joining us again this year as our esteemed panel moderator. Jeff is a seasoned executive with more than 20 years of experience in the human resources field. He serves on several boards for progressive HR technology companies, including Smashfly, Everwise, Impraise, and SmartRecruiters. He serves as a strategic consultant to many high growth progressive pre-IPO software companies across the globe. He is also a portfolio advisor to OpenView Venture Partners.

Prior, Jeff was the Chief People Officer at Atlassian, responsible for HR, facilities, employee experience, and shared services worldwide. Prior to joining Atlassian, He was CPO at SuccessFactors (an SAP company) and Chief HR Officer at Safeco. He has also held various
HR leadership roles at Microsoft, General Electric, and Bell South. Jeff is a Six Sigma BlackBelt and holds a Master's degree in Sociology from the University of South Carolina-Columbia and a Master's degree in HR management from the Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina.


Wow. This is a line-up you won't want to miss!

Register Now!