Mentorship in the Workplace

Friday, February 6th, 10:30-11:15 | MIT Media Lab

We know that finding a good mentor is crucial for professional development, and that seeking out mentors can be particularly challenging for underrepresented groups. How can we ensure that someone paving a new path in a company or industry is able to find the support and mentorship that he or she needs to succeed? Senior executives from a range of industries will share their reflections on the role of mentorship in their own careers and their advice for seeking and providing support to the next generation of leaders.


Julia Minson | Assistant Professor of Public Policy, Center for Public Leadership | Harvard Kennedy School


David Epstein | EVP Content and Inventory Strategy | AMC Networks
Sandra Moose | Senior Advisor | BCG
Christi Shaw | US Country Head, President of Novartis Corporation and President of Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation
Hemal Vaidya | Principal | Deloitte
Mike Volpe | Chief Marketing Officer | HubSpot | Sloan alum


David Epstein | EVP Content and Inventory Strategy | AMC Networks

Upon graduating from the MIT Sloan School of Management, David joined the Sales Analysis department at CBS.  Within months he began working on sports rights acquisitions, including the successful bids for Major League Baseball and the NCAA Basketball Tournament.  After four years at CBS, David moved on start the Sales Planning department at the fledgling network Comedy Central.

Beginning as a department of one, David built up a group that coincided with Comedy’s emergence as a leader in the ad sales community, including being ranked as the 2nd best sales force in basic cable (and the top ranked sales planning group).  Several years later, after Viacom took full management control of Comedy Central, MTV Networks adopted David’s systems and processes to be used in all of their cable properties.

After a brief stint heading up the primetime planning group at ABC, David joined Court TV as their Senior Vice President of Pricing and Planning, overseeing the planning, traffic, direct response and sales marketing groups.  Again, his efforts were part of Court TV being named the number one sales organization in all of television in 2005.

In 2006 David joined NBCU, heading up all of planning for the Cable Entertainment group and helping lead USA and Bravo to significant revenue increases.  Four years later David moved to AMC Networks where he is EVP, Content and Inventory Strategy, overseeing the pricing and planning, research, operations and direct response function.

David lives in Manhattan with his wife and three children, and is eagerly awaiting a rematch of the 1986 World Series.

David holds a B.A. in Economics from Johns Hopkins University and an M.B.A. in Applied Economics and Finance from M.I.T.’s Sloan School of Management.

Julia Minson | Assistant Professor of Public Policy, Center for Public Leadership | Harvard Kennedy School

Julia Minson.PNG

Julia Minson is an Assistant Professor of Public Policy in the Harvard Kennedy School. She is a social psychologist with research interests in group judgment and decision-making, negotiations, and social influence. Her primary line of research addresses psychological biases that prevent managers, consumers, and policy-makers from gaining maximum value from collaboration. She also studies the conditions that make people willing to listen and be receptive to views and opinions they strongly oppose. Her most recent work deals with structuring group interaction to maximize decision-making effectiveness. 

Prior to coming to the Kennedy School, Minson served as a Lecturer at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, where she taught Negotiations at both the MBA and the undergraduate levels. She received her PhD in Social Psychology from Stanford University and her BA in Psychology from Harvard University. 

Sandra Moose | Senior Advisor | BCG

Sandy joined The Boston Consulting Group in 1968 and was Senior Managing Partner and Director until retirement at the end of 2003.

During her years at BCG, Sandy was Managing Partner of the NY office for almost 11 years and Chaired the East Coast region (Boston, NY, Atlanta and Washington) in the mid-1990's. She also had administrative responsibilities and practice roles, including being co-head of the East Coast consumer goods/retailing practice area and co-founder of the Financial Service practice. In the course of her career, she has consulted in a broad spectrum of industries dealing with a wide range of issues. In her last ten years at BCG, she was intensively engaged in the financial services, telephony, and consumer goods industries.  After years of serving as Presiding Director of Verizon, Sandy recently retired from that board.   Sandy serves on a number of other boards—both public and non-profit, including serving as President of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and Chairman of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. She is knowledgeable on issues of corporate governance/functioning of boards of directors.

Sandy is chair of a $80 billion mutual fund complex (Natixis Advisor and Loomis Sayles Funds).  Being on the board of AES, she is knowledgeable about global power generation  and renewables.

Christi Shaw | US Country Head, President of Novartis Corporation and President of Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation

Christi is the U.S. Country Head, President of Novartis Corporation and President of Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation. Christi maintains an unwavering commitment to address the evolving needs of patients in collaboration with health care professionals, advocacy groups, payers and policy makers.  A champion of “Leading at all Levels,” Christi has worked across a myriad of therapeutic areas including cardiovascular, mental health, GI, oncology, infectious disease, rare diseases and Women’s Health.  Christi serves on the board of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products; the Healthcare Leadership Council, committed to achieving the vision of a 21st century system that makes affordable, high-quality care accessible to all Americans; and the Young Women’s Leadership Network, empowering at-risk young women through education.

Hemal Vaidya | Principal | Deloitte

Hemal is a Principal in the firm’s Strategy Consulting practice, and is in his 17th year with the firm.  Prior to joining Deloitte, Hemal attended Georgetown’s Foreign Service School and The London School of Economics magna cum laude for his undergraduate studies and received his MPA from The Maxwell School, Syracuse University, summa cum laude.  In the Federal Government, Hemal served at The White House National Performance Review on the design, implementation, and monitoring of the Government Performance & Results Act.  His passion for performance management carries through today, in his client service with CFOs, Finance, and Budget Directors on their most pressing challenges. Hemal has spoken at the AGA Performance Management Conference, been invited as a Visiting Lecturer at Georgetown University, and has spent most of the past 14  years serving the Departments of Homeland Security, State, and Transportation. Hemal also leads the firm’s team in India which supports the Federal Practice, a team that began in 2012 and will grow to over 50 by May 2015. 

Community Activities:  Inter-religious dialogue and fellowship at the Greater Baltimore Temple, mentoring of Indian-American adolescents in Baltimore. Active member of Pratham USA.

Personal Notes:  Family anchored around his Managing Partner and boss, his daughter, Maina; politics; biking; athletics

Mike Volpe | Chief Marketing Officer | HubSpot | Sloan alum


Mike Volpe joined HubSpot in early 2007 as the company's fifth employee and currently serves as chief marketing officer. He heads HubSpot's lead generation and branding strategy through inbound marketing, including blogging, search engine optimization, video marketing, and social media. Since Mike joined HubSpot, the company has grown from 10 to 11,000 customers, expanded from 5 to over 750 employees, and increased revenue from $0 to $77 million.