BOARD OF ADVISORS

Bonny Bentzin

As Deputy Chief Sustainability Officer at UCLA, Bonny is a key member of the leadership team for sustainability at UCLA, helping manage sustainability across the university to create a world-class living laboratory for sustainability. Bonny began her career in higher education sustainability as the Assistant Director of the Office of Sustainability Initiatives and the Director of University Sustainability Practices at Arizona State University, where she was instrumental in designing the overarching sustainability vision and executing the campus sustainability strategy for the university. She then served as the Director of Sustainability for GreenerU, a greater Boston area consulting firm focusing on the higher-ed sector in New England.

An experienced sustainability expert with a focus on developing and executing sustainability programs in the field of higher education and complex organizations, she has over 12 years of leadership, management and consulting experience, both within large‐scale organizations and as an outside consultant.

Bonny is a LEED AP and holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Environmental Studies, self-designed major “Environmental Problem Solving using Planning” from Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Massachusetts.

Sylvia Burks

Sylvia Burks is a corporate legal and business advisor, specializing in complex cross-border mergers and acquisitions, strategic alliances, venture capital and private equity financings involving companies in the technology, life sciences and other sectors from her office in Silicon Valley. She received her JD from University of Texas School of Law, studied law at the University of Bonn, Germany, and worked in the Competition Directorate of the Commission of the European Union. She has worked at international law firms both in Europe and the United states, serving as a partner for fifteen years at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pitman LLP and Coudert Brothers LLP. She holds an M.B.A. from the University of California Anderson Graduate School of Management. Burks advises public and private participants in the global marketplace through Cross-Border Counsel.

In her practice, Burks interfaces with C-Suite executives and Boards whose decision-making require the up to the minute knowledge of global markets and best practices. She is excited to work with Skytop, whose conference provide fora for executives to gather such knowledge and to hear diverse perspectives, drawn from fact-based research and the analysis of trusted thought leaders and industry experts.

Cindy Burrell
President, Diversity in Boardrooms

Diversity in Boardrooms consults with Corporate Boards and Advisory Boards. Leading the firm, Ms. Burrell contributes over 20 years of executive search expertise with a special focus in recruiting and referring diverse Director Candidates who enhance a company’s growth, profitability, and social responsibility reputation.  Over the years, she developed best practices guidelines for boards and she often serves as a Board Facilitator.

In the Chicago area, Ms. Burrell is a recognized leader in the business community as well as a strong diversity advocate nationally.  She is a Founder and Board Director of the Private Directors Association, which promotes private company board formation, supports excellent practices in board governance, and provides a network to connect individuals with private companies. In addition, she is a Board Leader for 2020 Women on Boards and a Member of 30% Coalition, both national organizations that advocate increasing the number of women corporate board directors.

She is Director Emeritus of the YWCA of Metropolitan Chicago, which has the mission of Empowering Women and Eliminating Racism. She was honored in 2011 by the Chicago Association of Minority Recruiters (CAMR) for her success in recruiting women and minorities to both corporate and advisory boards.

Currently, she is an Advisory Board Member for Skytop Strategies, which delivers high-content programs worldwide on topics such as Gender Equality in Boards; ESG; CSR; and Impact Investing. She is a 2019 “Director to Watch”, Private Company Director Magazine.

Ms. Burrell’s academic achievements include a Master’s degree from Boston University and a Bachelor’s degree from DePauw University.

Paula Luff

From 2007 through 2015, Luff was vice president of Corporate Social Responsibility for Hess Corporation where she established and led the global social responsibility function for the company.

Prior to joining Hess, she was senior director of strategic health partnerships for Pfizer Inc where she set strategy and led the teams that developed flagship programs and policies in global health for the company and its foundation. She also represented Pfizer on social investment and global health issues with the media, public officials, bi-lateral and multi-lateral organizations and other external stakeholders.

Luff was previously with CARE, the humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin and master’s degrees from New York University and the New School University. Luff is a Senior Associate with the Project on Prosperity and Development at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), and is a member of the Aspen Institute’s Business and Society Leaders’ Forum. She serves on the Boards of Philanthropy New York, the Access to Nutrition Foundation and the James R. Jordan Foundation.

Tom Manning

Tom Manning is a corporate advisor, board director, and educator. Currently, he serves on the boards of Dun & Bradstreet (Lead Director), CommScope, and Clear Media Limited. He was based in Hong Kong for 17 years, where he served as the CEO of Cerberus Asia, Capgemini Asia, and EY Global Consulting Asia, and as a partner with Bain & Company. Formerly, he was an independent director of several of China’s largest listed companies, including the Bank of Communications, Gome Electrical Appliances, AsiaInfo-Linkage Holdings, and iSoftStone; earlier in his career, he was with McKinsey & Company. He speaks Mandarin and teaches corporate governance, private equity, U.S.-China relations, and innovation at the University of Chicago Law School.

Manning is particularly enthusiastic about his collaboration with Skytop Strategies, which he describes as a “firm on a mission to connect thoughtful leaders with critical issues where leadership is keenly needed.” Manning notes that “Skytop has demonstrated an uncanny ability to identify insightful topics that demand attention, which is why Skytop conferences are attracting such diverse and influential participants.”