DEIJ Colloquium: Shelley Woods Whiting, Eleanor Allen, and Kristen Ransom

Shelley Woods Whiting, Eleanor Allen, and Kristen Ransom

What You Do HERE can Get You THERE! More STEM Successes from Tufts

October 26, 2022
12:00 - 1:30 PM
Joyce Cummings Center, Auditorium/Room 270

Alumni Shelley Woods Whiting (E91), Eleanor Allen (E92), and Kristen Ransom (E13, G18) joined us for a School of Engineering Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice Colloquium. The panel discussed their journeys in skill acquisition and career building, and how these journeys connected not only to their educational foundation at Tufts but to their futures as STEM professionals.

Associate Dean of Student Diversity, Inclusion, and Success Ellise LaMotte moderated the panel.

About the speakers:

Eleanor Allen, E92

Eleanor Allen, E92

Eleanor is the Lead Executive (new term for CEO) of B Lab Global, the nonprofit network transforming the global economy to benefit all people and the planet. B Lab creates standards, policies, tools, and programs to certify B Corps - companies that elect to balance profit with purpose. When businesses are run to benefit all stakeholders including employees, communities, customers, the environment, in addition to shareholders/owners, then business can be a force for good for all stakeholders and not run just to generate profit.  

Eleanor began her career as a Peace Corps volunteer, spent over 20 years as a consulting engineer with CH2M (now Jacobs) and Arcadis, and most recently was the CEO of Water For People where she is now Chair of the Board. Eleanor is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a distinguished alumna of the University of California at Berkeley. She is a registered professional engineer, board-certified environmental engineer, LEED accredited professional, and serves on several corporate and non-profit boards. Eleanor won the Schwab Award for Social Entrepreneurship, did a TEDx talk on Why Water Is A Women’s Issue, was named a Denver Outstanding Women in Business, is Water Environment Federation Fellow, and was named one of the Top 10 Influential Women of Water.  

Her passions include JEDI (justice/equity/diversity/inclusion), building high-performing multi-cultural teams, incorporating personal wellbeing practices into daily life, and mentoring social change makers and STEM professionals. She has lived and worked all over the world and speaks several languages. Eleanor enjoys ultra and endurance cycling, hiking, cooking, and exploring Colorado and beyond with her husband, two boys, and two dogs. 

Kristen Ransom, E13 and EG18

Kristen Ransom, E13 and EG18

Previously named one of Boston Magazine’s Top 30 Rising Tech Stars, Kristen Ransom is a prime example of #BlackGirlMagic – an award-winning entrepreneur, engineer, and motivational speaker. Kristen is the Co-Founder of Include Web Design, a digital strategy company that provides strategic and graphically stunning web design services to small businesses and purpose-driven organizations. Kristen and her husband, and co-founder, established Include with a two-fold mission: (1) to make a powerful online presence more accessible to small business owners and (2) to make a career in web design and development more accessible by training and hiring a diverse team.  

The Include team has worked with everyone, from the neighborhood soul food restaurant to larger organizations like Eastern Bank, that seek to empower small businesses as well. In just the past 7 years, Include’s accomplishments have been featured in countless renowned publications including Forbes Magazine, The Root, The  Bay State Banner, Narcity and EssenceNow.   

Prior to starting Include, Kristen used her love for user-centered design at a variety of companies including Harley-Davidson, MITRE Corporation, and the Department of  Transportation, to develop both hardware and software products fit for an increasingly diverse world. Additionally, Kristen continues to use her engineering background for product development with the intention of licensing her technology. Kristen’s mission is to promote diversity and inclusion through diversity in design. “We’re trying to change the face of tech,” Ransom says, “and this time, everyone’s included.” 

Shelley Woods Whiting, E91

Shelley Woods Whiting, E91

Shelley Woods Whiting is a consultant, adviser, trainer and the Principal of SW2, LLC. She guides companies of all sizes and types to accelerate growth.  Her clients are entrepreneurs, start-ups, privately-owned, private equity and large public corporations.  Shelley is especially valued as a skilled strategist and coach to multinational organizations interested in innovating and developing commercial talent.  Her consulting practice transcends strategy, marketing and leadership topics.  She is also regularly retained by not-for-profit organizations with similar needs and for board training. 

Shelley is also an award-winning marketer who has successfully grown P&Ls in B2B and B2C industry leaders such as Avery Dennison, Georgia-Pacific, DuPont and FMC.  She is an invited speaker and panelist who has served on numerous for-profit and not-for-profit boards.

Shelley earned her BS from Tufts University and MBA from The Ross School of Business at The University of Michigan.  She resides in Atlanta, GA.