Second Annual Elastic{ON} Women's Breakfast

We assembled a panel of executives and engineers to talk about their experiences in the software and technology space. They discussed approaches to growing their careers, navigated key challenges and difficult decisions, and how they have promoted diversity and equality in tech.

Shay Banon

Founder and CEO

Shay Banon is the CEO, founder of Elastic, and creator of Elasticsearch, the open source, distributed, RESTful search and analytics engine. Before creating Elasticsearch, Shay spent more than a decade building complex distributed systems and open source search solutions.

Sophie Chang

Sophie Chang is Team Lead for Machine Learning at Elastic. Formerly VP Engineering at Prelert, she is an experienced engineering manager, with a background in enterprise software and systems management. She has a degree in Physics from Imperial College.

Cindy Robbins

Cindy Robbins is executive vice president of Global Employee Success at Salesforce—the World's Most Innovative Company according to Forbes and one of Fortune's Best Companies to Work for five years in a row. In this role, Robbins leads the company's efforts to attract, develop and retain the best talent. Robbins has more than 15 years of experience in the field of Human Resources. At Salesforce, Robbins' previous leadership roles within Employee Success include overseeing recruiting and global business partners. Prior to joining Salesforce in 2006, she held positions at major technology companies including BEA, OpenWave, Plumtree Software and Excite@Home. Robbins holds a B.S. in Political Science from Santa Clara University.

Shikha Srivastava

Shikha is a Senior Technical Staff Member (STSM) and a Master Inventor at IBM. She is a lead Hybrid Cloud architect where she brings her expertise in architecture, design, and leadership towards collaboratively creating innovative pragmatic solutions that leads to enabling Hybrid solutions for the clients. Shikha has won awards in innovation and technical achievement. She enjoys leadership roles focused on making things happen and shipping. Shikha is a strong open source advocate focused on building simple tools. She has worked with several clients across multiple industries including health, insurance, and finance. She has co-presented with client and BPs at conferences, and has also been invited as a guest speaker at customer conferences. Shikha lives in Cary, North Carolina with her husband and two sons who manage to take up most of her 'free' time.

Leah Sutton

Leah Sutton is the Vice President of Human Resources at Elastic and responsible for all facets of HR. Prior to Elastic, Leah was the Senior Director of HR at Plum Organics where she was responsible for supporting the leadership team through a period of high growth and change post-acquisition by Campbell Soup Company. Prior to working at Plum, Leah spent five years with Bloom Energy, a Silicon Valley-based clean tech. During her tenure at Bloom, she held various HR roles, including a stint in Bangalore as the HR leader for India and Asia Pacific. She was also a consultant at Deloitte and a Peace Corps Volunteer in West Africa. Leah holds a BA in Anthropology & African Studies from the University of Wisconsin — Madison and an MBA from UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business.

Maria Zhang

As Vice President of Engineering, Maria Zhang leads development efforts at Tinder, building and scaling the app for its global user base, assembling and guiding a world-class team of engineers and challenging everyone to create software instilled with purpose. Prior to joining Tinder, Maria served as Vice President of Engineering at Yahoo Mobile, garnering the highly coveted Apple Design Award and shipping major product releases, including: Yahoo, Yahoo News Digest, Yahoo Sports and Yahoo Fantasy Sports. Prior to Yahoo, Maria founded Alike, a mobile local recommendation app later acquired by Yahoo. Maria’s previous positions include Principal Software Development Manager at Microsoft, Product Team Lead at, and Senior Software Engineer at NetIQ Corp.

Maria received a Masters in Computer Science and a B.A. in Computer Science, Mathematics and Economics from Eastern Michigan University after transferring from Tsinghua University in Beijing. She currently resides in Palo Alto, California.