Flash Memory Summit Expands Commitment to Diversity in Flash Storage Industry

Monday, July 22nd 2019

SuperWomen in Flash Networking Panel and Leadership Award Raise Profile of Women and Minority Leaders; FMS Names First Diversity Chair

SANTA CLARA, CA – July 22, 2019 – Women and minorities have long faced hurdles of unequal treatment, sexism and racism in the storage industry.  Flash Memory Summit (FMS) is committed to changing the status quo through a series of SuperWomen in Flash programs that celebrate the success of women in storage and recognize those companies committed to improving workplace diversity. Flash Memory Summit also announced the appointment of a new Diversity Chair to engage more women and minorities throughout the event.

SuperWomen in Flash was founded five years ago by FMS and Camberley Bates, Managing Director of Evaluator Group, to promote the success of women in flash memory and attract more talent to this dynamic industry.   According to Bates, “The data storage industry significantly lacks female engineering talent.  Women typically comprise less than 10% of all technical program attendees at Flash Memory Summit.  We’re absolutely missing out on the ability women bring to create breakthroughs in technology.”

5th Annual SuperWomen in Flash Networking Panel

The annual executive panel and lunch, held in conjunction with Flash Memory Summit, offers an important networking opportunity for women and men at all levels in the flash industry.  The 2019 event features diversity leaders from IBM, Intel, AWS and Qumulo, who will discuss their initiatives and recommend solutions to overcome barriers and challenges. The goal is to develop an active community of support and resources, encourage mentoring, and explore new ideas and actions that improve diversity in the workplace.

2019 Executive Panel:

  • John Ferris, IBM, Business Unit Executive, Europe and WW Offering Management
  • Pat McDonald, Intel, VP of NSG High Velocity
  • Ivan Iannaccone, AWS, Head of Storage Infrastructure
  • Molly Brown, Qumulo, VP of Engineering


Date: Tuesday, August 6 from 12:40-1:40 pm

Location: Santa Clara Convention Center, Ballroom G

Register: (required for lunch) here


2nd Annual SuperWomen in Flash Leadership Award

This prestigious award was created in 2018 to recognize women who make invaluable contributions to the flash memory ecosystem and who serve as role models for women in leadership.  The Inaugural Award honored Amber Huffman, Intel Fellow, in acknowledgement of her two decades of advancing change and innovation in solid state storage, including the awarding of over 20 patents, and her inspiring collaboration with inclusive male leaders and female trailblazers. 

2019 Award Announcement:  Thursday, August 8 at 11:30 am

Location:  Mission City Ballroom

FMS Names First Diversity Chair

As part of its commitment to diversity, Flash Memory Summit created its first Diversity Chair in 2019 and named Uma Parepalli, Senior Director at Marvell, to head this important function.   In his new role, Uma is working to engage more women and minorities at every level of the event, including chairpeople, speakers, organizers, advisors and executives.

“Our industry must focus on the significant talent available and the benefits of a diverse workforce and management team,” said Uma Parepalli, Senior Director, Marvell.  “I’m excited and pleased to be asked to spearhead this important effort.  The technology industry can, and must, do better. “

About Flash Memory Summit

Flash Memory Summit, produced by Conference ConCepts, showcases the mainstream applications, key technologies, and leading vendors that are driving the multi-billion-dollar non-volatile memory and SSD markets. FMS is now the world’s largest event featuring the trends, innovations, and influencers driving the adoption of flash memory in demanding enterprise storage applications, as well as in smartphones, tablets, and mobile and embedded systems.

Media Contacts

Dan Chmiewlewski


Suzanne Tuchler



Connect with us on Twitter and LinkedIn

Forgot your password? Reset it here.