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VIRTUAL SALON: ‘Hindsights of a New Director’

May 28 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm PDT

This Salon discussion will focus on the process of getting on a board as well as some tips once you join a board. 

Interviewing for a board seat is nothing like interviewing for a full-time job. The timeline can be 6-9 months or even longer. The process can seem much more casual. And, the interview itself is very different. What do you need to expect in terms of the selection time frame and process? How do you prepare for questions and concerns in the interview process, and how does this preparation differ between public and private companies? What resources are most helpful as you prepare for questions you’ll likely be asked? How do you position yourself for the more ambiguous expectations around “chemistry” and “culture fit”? And, what should you know about the on boarding process and attending your first board meetings.

Join us to explore how others have navigated the interview and selection process to land a board role that fits them—and how you can do the same. 

Moderator: Nancy Sheppard

Discussion Leader: Patty Hatter

Nancy Sheppard joined the Leadership Team of Athena Alliance in February 2017. She founded Women2Boards in 2014 to assist women leaders on their path to a corporate boardroom. Her challenges and achievements in working in male-dominated environments inspire her passion to assist more women to succeed in business and breakthrough the boardroom ceiling. Her past board and executive experience includes 20+ years as CEO and director, Western Independent Bankers, a founding board member for a bank services corporation, and a trustee for a workers’ self-insurance group. She was a member of the leadership team at the California Bankers Association and spent several years in Washington D.C. as legislative assistant on Capitol Hill. She was selected as one of the Most Influential Women in Business by the San Francisco Business Times. Because of her leadership in the board diversity movement, she was asked to chair the 2020 Women on Boards San Francisco, National Discussion on Board Diversity for the past two years. She is a member of the Women’s Leadership Council of the Renaissance Entrepreneur Center which assists low-income women to start and grow their own businesses. Her role for Athena is as a Journey Advisor for members and she contributes to the communications strategy to accomplish the mission of accelerating boardroom gender diversity.


Patty Hatter is a multiple award-winning technology, business, and operations leader who drives digital transformation and growth for global companies. Patty currently advises early stage technology companies, focused on key technologies such as cybersecurity, cloud infrastructure, and blockchain-enabled enterprise applications, on topics ranging from strategy to customer engagement. In addition, she is on the Board of Directors for Qualys Inc and Barrick Gold Corp. Prior to this, Patty was SVP of the McAfee Services organization, which had a stunning 50% growth during her tenure, while also achieving the highest customer ratings in the company. Previous to her role at McAfee Services, she served as general manager of Security and Software for Intel Security as well as CIO and SVP of Operations for McAfee before and during the integration into Intel. There she orchestrated a global transformation of IT and operations, turning it into an asset that delivered substantial cost savings while enabling revenue growth across the enterprise. Before joining McAfee in 2010 Patty was vice president of business operations at Cisco Systems Inc. where she was responsible for improving integration of Cisco’s processes and systems with the company’s sales channels. Earlier in her six-year tenure at Cisco, she led a transformation of the company’s global processes and systems infrastructure that contributed to growth, scalability, and revenue. Patty started her career at AT&T Inc., where she held various leadership roles in strategic planning, business development, services, and P&L management within the United States and Europe. In recent years she has received a series of highly coveted awards, including “Women of Influence” and “Power Executive” by Silicon Valley Business Journal; “Bay Area CIO of the Year” by both Silicon Valley Business Journal; HMG’s “Transformational CIO Award”, and The National Diversity Council’s “Most Powerful and Influential Woman”.


This salon is offered exclusively to members of Athena Alliance.