Kim leads the Global IT organization of over 500 personnel in support of Bio-Rad Laboratories $2B business. She is an Information Technology executive with global experience in IT strategy, application delivery, technical operations, and infrastructure support across multiple businesses and technologies. At Bio-Rad, she partnered with Company Executives to develop an overall IT strategy, vision, & roadmap which leverage innovative technologies to meet the long term business goals. Strategy included a new eBusiness sales channel, a business transformation effort based on global processes which enabled the consolidation of 25 ERPs into one global business solution (SAP), cloud based CRM (Salesforce.com) to provide quality service to customers and visibility into the sales channel, and a service oriented architecture which helped to streamline acquisition integrations and lower total cost of ownership.
She has also served in IT leadership positions for Johnson & Johnson, Lucent Technologies, and Space Systems/Loral. She served in the United States Army for 10 years as a helicopter and airplane pilot where she commanded two aviation companies. Her assignments have taken her to Germany, Korea, Panama, and Washington D.C. She was selected as the 2012 CIO of the Year – Rising Star by San Francisco Business Times & Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal.
Kim is a graduate of the United States Military Academy and holds a Masters of Business Administration from Strayer College. She serves on the Northern California Girl Scout Board where she supports numerous STEM initiatives to encourage girls to be involved in technology. She also sits and serves as a mentor on the Gold Award Committee for the region, Girl Scouts highest honor. She enjoys spending time with her family and training for triathlons.
Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc. is a $2B multi-national company that manufactures and supplies products and systems used to separate complex chemical and biological materials, as well as to identify, analyze, and purify their components for life science research, healthcare, analytical chemistry, and other markets. The company operates through two segments, Life Science and Clinical Diagnostics. The Life Science segment develops, manufactures, and markets a range of reagents, apparatus, and laboratory instruments that are used in research techniques, biopharmaceutical production processes, and food testing regimes. The Clinical Diagnostics segment designs, manufactures, sells, and supports test systems, informatics systems, test kits, and specialized quality controls that serve clinical laboratories in the diagnostics market. Its products include reagents, instruments, and software, which address specific niches within the in vitro diagnostics (IVD) test market. The company offers its products through its direct sales force and a service network. It has operations in Europe, Pacific Rim, the United States, and internationally. Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc. was founded in 1952 and is headquartered in Hercules, California.
The lines between IT and the business continue to blur as more and more of our business processes utilize technology to deliver goods & services to our customers. In order to keep up with this evolution, the role of the Chief Information Officer (CIO) has changed to not only be a technologist, but a business savvy one. I know when I started my career; I did not think I would ever work in the IT field. I do have a STEM background though, starting out as a Computer Science major in college and quickly changing to Aerospace Engineering as I didn’t want to be stuck writing code all day. As a project manager on the business side, I realized that the IT team struggled to communicate to me the capabilities of IT in terms that I could understand. I saw a natural fit for me to be a “technology translator”. With good problem solving, project management, and communication skills, I excelled at delivering valuable projects with the business that met their needs. I look for these same skills in the IT talent I hire. A background in STEM provides the foundation for a career in technology. We do hire a number of interns during the summer and assign them to short term meaningful projects. We look for candidates that have a technical degree, not always in Computer Science. I feel that having that logical mind of wanting to know how things run & work, lends itself to being a good business analyst in IT. They are curious about how the business runs and how systems/technology can make it better. They see the end to end process and the implications on other areas or systems that may be impacted by a new system…connecting the dots as I call it. As IT we see the big picture, and I often help connected other parts of the business to each other to solve gaps or business problems.
One area that I have focused on in my organization is Innovation. Not just innovation in IT, but how do we help the business use innovative IT technologies in developing and servicing our own products. We helped one of our divisions use Big Data/Hadoop to gather information from our instruments which were deployed in hospital labs to understand if it was having a maintenance issue and to notify us before the customer needed to. In the past we would have spent a lot of money putting in video conferencing rooms & service. Mobility is another innovative area that we have focused on with the business. It is important to be able to be productive on any device, anywhere. We have piloted a number of technology solutions to virtualize our desktop/PC environment. This will help our workforce be more productive as well as secure our information and data.
An area that is very passionate for me is helping young girls and women succeed in a STEM field. I am actively involved with the Girl Scouts of Northern California and I sit on the Board. In partnership with the Nasa Ames Research center, we sponsor the Space Cookies, which is a student led robotics team comprised of high school girls across the region. Members participate in hands-on engineering, mechanical design, fabrication, electronics, programming, team leadership, marketing, graphic design, community outreach, and FUN! It is a great way for young women to see STEM in action! They also see ways to be involved in STEM such as communication or art design that can be a complementary area of a STEM field or career. The Girl Scouts also foster leadership & team work which are also needed life skills. I sit on the committee who helps girls obtain their Gold Award, which is the highest Girl Scout honor, similar to the Boy Scout eagle award. They need to identify an issue that positively impacts their community, investigate it thoroughly, get help and build a team, create a plan, present the plan, gather feedback, take action, and educate and inspire others. It is a great experience that culminates their Girl Scout experience and prepares them for college.
As one of the first classes of women to graduate the U.S. Military Academy which emphasis STEM in its curriculum, I also had the opportunity to attend flight school and spent 10 years flying Blackhawk helicopters and C-12 airplanes. The education I received from the Academy prepared me for this technical field and to lead soldiers assigned to Aviation units. A couple of other graduates that I am especially proud (and in awe) of are 1LT Shayne Haver and Captain Kristen Griest, the first two women ever to graduate from Army Ranger school. This is the most difficult course (mentally & physically) in the Army. Both female and male members of the Ranger class endured weeks of limited food & sleep, while performing combat related tasks in rugged environments – dense woods, mountains and swamps. The women were held to the same standards as the men in all aspects of the training. They received their Ranger tab in August 2015.
In summary, being in a STEM field has helped me not only support the business where I work, it has also afforded me the opportunity to help my community and be a role model to young girls & women. I wouldn’t be where I am today without that foundation. Go STEM!