The Indianapolis Recorder is partnering with InnoPower to recognize 12 individuals who exemplify professional and community excellence. The Golden Laurel Shining Stars Awards will be 3:30 p.m. Aug. 28 during Beyond 2020 InnoPower Minority Business Conference. The conference will be Aug. 28-29.
The Shining Stars will be recognized for their positive work — both professionally and personally — in the community.
With careers ranging from agriculture and law to education, the Shining Stars help make Indianapolis a thriving city by demonstrating how to maintain a career while being civically involved.
Tracy Barnes, chief information officer, State of Indiana
Tracy Barnes was appointed as Indiana’s chief information officer by Gov. Eric Holcomb in March. Barnes sits on the governor’s cabinet, overseeing the Indiana Office of Technology, and provides oversight of the state’s technology portfolio.
Barnes was previously chief of staff for the lieutenant governor and deputy auditor and IT director for the Indiana Auditor of the State. He also served as president and CEO of ENTAP, an IT consulting service.
Barnes has been recognized as Inc. Magazine’s 9th Fastest Growing Black Entrepreneur and received the IBE Governor’s Award for Achievement in Technology. He is also on the board of directors for the Mitch Daniels Leadership Foundation and NXG Youth Motorsports.
Barnes has a bachelor’s degree in computer science from Butler University and is completing a master’s degree from the University of Maryland.
Kimberly Bostic, president and CEO, Starfish Initiative
In her role as president and CEO of Starfish Initiative, Kimberly Bostic manages strategic planning, fundraising strategy and execution, board development and oversight of day-to-day operations.
Previously, Bostic managed major gift and individual leadership giving for United Way of Central Indiana. Giving increased by 1% year over year under Bostic’s leadership. She also served on the national Equity and Education Initiative.
Bostic was development director for United Negro College Fund (UNCF) and helped the regional office meet its goal of raising $1.4 million. She was also executive director for Mount Carmel Community Life Center.
Bostic volunteers for many organizations including Indianapolis Weed and Seed Far Eastside, Lawrence Township Hunger Coalition, Far Eastside Action Coalition (FEAC) and Pathway Resource Center Planning Committee. She serves as board chair for Steward Speakers.
She graduated from Indiana University with a Bachelor of Arts in political science and a paralegal certificate. She also earned a graduate certificate in public management/administration and MPA from IU School of Public and Environmental Affairs. She also is a certified fundraising expert.
Kai Johnson, corporate marketing manager, Salesforce
Kai Johnson is the leader of the Values Based Marketing program at Salesforce, overseeing the company’s customer and community engagement strategy. She is a board member for EmployIndy Workforce Development and PepUp Tech, a not-for-profit which helps underrepresented communities access skills and mentors to begin careers in technology.
In 2018, she was recognized as one of 100 Heroes making an impact in Indianapolis by the United Way of Central Indiana and was recently recognized by Indiana Business Journal as a Forty Under 40 for 2020. Johnson holds a bachelor’s degree from Purdue University’s Krannert School of Management.
Darryl Lockett, executive director, Kennedy King Memorial Initiative
In January 2020, Darryl Lockett became the first full-time director of The Kennedy King Memorial Initiative (KKMI), a nonprofit organization dedicated to building on the historical events of April 4, 1968, to raise awareness, provoke thought and inspire action to eliminate division and injustice.
Lockett previously worked as a research and policy fellow at Washington Development Industry Council, project coordinator for Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research and Democracy Corps, and development coordinator for the National Diversity Council.
Lockett brings to KKMI experience in nonprofit management, political and philanthropic strategy, and diversity, equity and inclusion advocacy.
He currently serves as chair of Central Indiana Racial Equity Fund and has served on civic boards in Washington, D.C., Houston and Philadelphia.
A graduate of Howard University, Lockett has completed the MA/MBA dual program at John Hopkins University Carey Business School and Krieger School of Arts and Sciences.
Rajan Gajaria, executive vice president, Corteva Agriscience
Rajan Gajaria is executive vice president of business platforms at Corteva Agriscience, where he is responsible for shaping the company’s business strategy for crop production, seed and digital business platforms; defining capital and research and development priorities; and overseeing the supply chain for crop protection and seed products around the world.
Gajaria was previously in sales and marketing roles with Dow AgroScience in Mumbai before moving to the company’s headquarters in Indianapolis.
Gajaria is on the board of the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce and the board of directors of the Central Indiana Corporate Partnerships. He is also an advocate for life sciences on the board of BioCrossroads.
Gajaria has a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Bombay in Mumbai and a master’s degree from the Indian Institute of Management in Lucknow, India.
Michael-Bryant Hicks, general counsel, executive vice president and corporate secretary, Elanco
Michael-Bryant Hicks is general counsel, executive vice president and corporate secretary for Elanco, where he oversees the legal organization and global legal strategy.
Previously, Hicks served as general counsel at Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals where he managed all legal functions. He was also senior vice president, general counsel, chief compliance officer and corporate secretary for The Providence Service Corporation, assistant general counsel for DaVita, and associate general counsel and head of legal support for Asia and Latin America for Beckman Coulter. Hicks also worked for the law firms of Vinson & Elkins LLP and Mayer, Rowe & Maw LLP.
He earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Juris Doctor from Yale University.
Doneisha Posey, vice president of Diversity, Equity and Belonging, Ivy Tech Community College
As vice president of Diversity, Equity and Belonging at Ivy Tech Community College, Doneisha Posey works to ensure all students, staff, faculty and community members have access and opportunity.
A civil rights attorney, Posey worked with the Indiana Civil Rights Commission where she served as the administrative law judge and later as deputy director and general counsel. She had litigated before state and federal administrative agencies, including the Executive Office of Immigration Review within the Department of Justice and state and federal courts. She is an adjunct professor of law at Indiana University.
Indianapolis Business Journal recognized her as a Forty Under 40, and she was named as Indy’s Best and Brightest by Junior Achievement of Central Indiana. She received the Indiana Civil Rights Commission Drum Major for Justice Award in 2019 and was named Lawyer of the Year by the Marion County Bar Association in 2018.
She serves as board chair for the Marion County Bar Association and is a member of the Indiana Latino Expo, Indiana Supreme Court Language Access Advisory Council, Indianapolis Urban Leage Exchange and the 2021 NBA All-Star Legacy Committee.
Posey earned a Bachelor of Arts from Marian University and a Juris Doctor from Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law.
Rafael Sanchez, president of Private Banking, Old National Bank
As president of private banking at Old National Bank, Rafael Sanchez is a member of the executive team. Sanchez is an attorney and former president and CEO of Indianapolis Power and Light Company. He was previously vice president of Business Development and Legal Affairs for Fineline Printing Group and a former partner at the law firm Bingham Greenebaum Doll LLP. Sanchez is a native of Puerto Rico. He moved to Indiana in 1996 to study law at Indiana University Maurer School of Law and moved to Indianapolis in 2002.
He currently is co-chair of the Indianapolis 2021 NBA All-Star Game, chairman of the Board of United Way Central Indiana, chairman of the board of Indiana Latino Institute and secretary for Indy Championship Fund. He is president-elect for Crossroads Boy Scouts of America.
Sanchez earned a bachelor’s degree in social sciences and political science from the University of Puerto Rico and a law degree from Indiana University Maurer School of Law.
Shondria Seaton, president, Black Data Processing Associates (BDPA)
In her duties as a member of the Information and Digital Solutions organization at Eli Lilly and Co., Shondria Seaton leads process improvement and organizational change managements in medicines development. She recently led an award-winning initiative that ensured key business critical systems data could be recovered after a digital disaster.
She previously worked at IBM and Anthem before returning to Lilly. She is a former adjunct professor at Indiana Wesleyan University and taught an online basic web design course at IUPUI.
Seaton is president of the Black Data Professionals Association Indianapolis Chapter, board of trustees for Oaks Academy, a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., Indianapolis Alumnae Chapter.
Seaton’s volunteer work includes reading to third graders for Read Up, serving as a Christian storyteller at Traders Point Christian Church and serving on the Fathers and Families Center annual luncheon planning committee for more than 10 years.
Seaton earned a Bachelor of Science degree in computer and information science from Florida A&M University and a Master of Business Administration from Indiana Wesleyan University.
LaTasha Sturdivant, senior director of Special Initiatives and Research, Community Foundation of Central Indiana (CICF)
Latasha Sturdivant is the senior director of special initiatives and research at Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF), where she leads the Indianapolis Foundation Library Fund, the Herbert Simon Family Foundation Roots to Read project, as well as research related to CICF’s strategic initiatives.
Sturdivant is also the founder and owner of Delta River Consulting, a consulting agency that utilizes research and best practices to drive strategic change in corporations and nonprofits.
Sturdivant holds a Ph.D. in adult learning and development from Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, a master’s degree in international education from George Washington University and a bachelor’s degree in bilingual education from Kalamazoo College. She has a nonprofit management certificate from Indiana University and a secondary teacher certification in the state of Michigan.
Corey Wilson, vice president of Community Engagement, Pacers Sports and Entertainment
Corey Wilson is vice president of community engagement and executive director of the Pacers Foundation, which is part of Pacers Sports and Entertainment.
Wilson has previously worked for Nike and the Marion County Public Health Department, and he served on the staff of the lieutenant governor of Indiana.
Wilson became chairman of the Shoes for Children Program when he was 17. He has also been in leadership roles for the Indiana Black Expo Elected and Appointed Officials Reception and Beautillion Militaire Scholarship Program. Wilson has also been on the boards of 100 Black Men of Indianapolis and Boy Scouts.
Wilson has a bachelor’s degree from Indiana State University and a master’s degree in business administration from Purdue University.
Vincent Wong, interim head of Physician Office Lab and Specialty Diagnostics, Roche Diagnostics
In his role at Roche Diagnostics, Vince Wong leads the Physician Office Lab and Specialty Diagnostics teams in serving various customer segments including distribution, physician lab systems, clinician sales, donor screening and custom biotech. He is a member of the CEO’s leadership team, the North America Diagnostics Executive Committee.
Previously, Wong was a general manager of broadband and VPN services at Telamon Corporation. He represented Fortune 500 clients in federal and state litigation for the law firm Locke Reynolds, now Frost Brown Todd LLC), and in 2000, he served as counsel to the Indiana Senate. Wong also was a consultant to multinational firms, supporting their China market leadership teams.
He is a member of the board of directors for International Violin Competition of Indianapolis, Dance Kaleidoscope, Asian American Alliance Inc. and the Indianapolis Museum of Art. He serves on the board of directors for the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce. He was recognized as one of Indianapolis Business Journal’s 2001 Forty Under 40 honorees.
Wong received a Bachelor’s of Arts in economics and government from the University of Notre Dame, a Master of Business Administration from Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management and a Juris Doctor from Indiana University School of Law.