Exec Bio: Richard Berwick of Qualcomm
<em>Living in San Diego, and Southern California in general, we’re pretty lucky to have so many Fortune 500 corporations and major enterprises right in our backyard that are changing the way the nation does business. From biopharmaceutical and medical campuses, to technology and entertainment businesses, sunny San Diego has a number of brands and executives residing in the area that have a global influence. </em></p>
<em>We got a chance to chat with Richard Berwick, Senior Director, Strategic Investments for Qualcomm about his background, work with <a href="http://www.businesschief.com/industry-focus/technology/t-buys-19-billio…;, and what he likes to do in his spare time.</em></p>
Berwick was born and raised in Marin County, California and has lived on both coasts before he took up a post in 1998 at mobile technology developer, Qualcomm. He studied at and graduated from Cal State Long Beach with an Engineering Degree. He later designed satellites and rocket engines in the LA area before dabbling into venture capital and investment banking. Today, he is responsible for investing in companies that are strategic to Qualcomm’s objective around the world.</p>
BEING A PART OF THE BOARD</p>
When he’s not at Qualcomm, Berwick is the Board Chairman for the <a href="http://www.usfcc.org">Foundation for the Children of the <span data-scayt_word="Californias" data-scaytid="6">Californias</span> (FCC)</a>, an organization that has raised funds to meet the urgent need for pediatric care in the California/Mexico border region. The foundation’s <em>Hospital <span data-scayt_word="Infantil" data-scaytid="11">Infantil</span> </em>is located in Baja California and offers pediatric surgeries and healthcare to families in need.</p>
“The role of Chair at FCC is more cheerleader than anything else,” Berwick says. “With an all-volunteer board and everyone’s busy schedule, the Chair needs to keep people engaged and excited. The Chair must build relationships with our partners across the border beyond those of a board member, along with expanding the community in which FCC will raise funds.</p>
The privately-funded hospital has seen more than 300,000 children since it was established. “The addition of three new surgical suites next year will allow us to better accommodate the schedules of our volunteer surgeons in order to serve more children for free,” he continues.</p>
The FCC has begun to reach a much larger community with their concert events in recent years. FCC has been an incredibly successful small charity due to the energy of its founders. “In order to support a larger patient population along the border and our new facility we need to engage with a much larger group of supporters. This means identifying groups with a strong affinity for children’s health and the border region across the Southern California basin,” he says.</p>
Building a bridge between Southern California and northern Baja has always been on the front burner for the area. Tijuana is the busiest <span data-scayt_word="U.S" data-scaytid="1">U.S</span>. border crossing in the country and is among the busiest trade ports. Berwick believes that because the majority of families in the area extend to both sides of the border, the two areas cannot be divorced. “Providing first class children’s care at a facility in Tijuana affects the entire region,” he says.</p>
ON THE FOREFRONT</p>
FCC’s annual fundraising concert gala on behalf of the <em>Hospital <span data-scayt_word="Infantil" data-scaytid="12">Infantil</span> de Las <span data-scayt_word="Californias" data-scaytid="7">Californias</span></em> will be organized by co-chairs Steve <span data-scayt_word="Redfearn" data-scaytid="15">Redfearn</span> and Ashley <span data-scayt_word="Constans" data-scaytid="17">Constans</span>, President and Director of Operations of event production company, <span data-scayt_word="Redfearn" data-scaytid="16">Redfearn</span> & Associates. The duo are pulling double duty this year as event co-chairs and the resident production company, <span data-scayt_word="Redfearn" data-scaytid="38">Redfearn</span> & Associates. <span data-scayt_word="Redfearn" data-scaytid="39">Redfearn</span> was pleased to be tapped to<span style="font-size: 13px; line-height: 16px; "> oversee all of the production details of this special event again, as they were responsible for last year's inaugural event production; they helped secure the Grammy award-winning musical entertainment, while also coordinating the live and silent auctions, lighting, sound, etc.</span></p>
This year’s “Concert for the Children” benefit will be held at the Hyatt <span data-scayt_word="Aventine" data-scaytid="18">Aventine</span> in La Jolla, California on October 7<sup><span data-scayt_word="th" data-scaytid="19">th</span></sup> and headlined by Grammy award-winning and legendary recording artist, Kenny Loggins. Proceeds from this special evening will go towards the support of the <em>Hospital <span data-scayt_word="Infantil" data-scaytid="13">Infantil</span> de <span data-scayt_word="las" data-scaytid="20">las</span> <span data-scayt_word="Californias" data-scaytid="8">Californias</span></em>, the only pediatric medical facility in northwest Mexico, offering over 35 pediatric surgical and medical services at affordable costs as well as financial assistance to families in need.</p>
For over 17 years the <em>Hospital <span data-scayt_word="Infantil" data-scaytid="14">Infantil</span> de <span data-scayt_word="las" data-scaytid="21">las</span> <span data-scayt_word="Californias" data-scaytid="9">Californias</span></em> has carried out its simple mission: to improve the health of children in this region by delivering essential medical care. Guided by co-founders <span data-scayt_word="Dr.'s" data-scaytid="2">Dr.’s</span> Elizabeth G. Jones and Gabriel Chong King, the clinic has evolved and today offers 35 medical specialties and services from over 200 highly qualified pediatric professionals, many who proudly and generously donate their services on a volunteer basis.</p>
Proceeds from the event will ensure that the hospital can keep pediatric surgical and medical services at affordable costs as well as continue to offer financial assistance to families in need. The hospital established the <span data-scayt_word="P.A.P.I" data-scaytid="3">P.A.P.I</span>. Program (<span data-scayt_word="Programa" data-scaytid="22">Programa</span> de <span data-scayt_word="Apoyo" data-scaytid="23">Apoyo</span> a <span data-scayt_word="Pacientes" data-scaytid="24">Pacientes</span> <span data-scayt_word="Indigentes" data-scaytid="25">Indigentes</span>) to assist with these medical expenses and ensure that any child, regardless of their ability to pay, will receive the surgeries and care they need.</p>
Tickets can be purchased online at <a href="http://www.usfcc.org"><span data-scayt_word="//www.usfcc.org" data-scaytid="4">www.usfcc.org</span></a> for $300 per person. Sponsorships begin at $3,000. For tickets or more information about the event and sponsorship opportunities, please call the Foundation for the Children of the <span data-scayt_word="Californias" data-scaytid="10">Californias</span> at <span data-scayt_word="619.298.KIDS" data-scaytid="5">619.298.KIDS</span> (5437).</p>
Marketing matters: from IBM to Kyndryl
Prior to joining Kyndryl as Chief Marketing Officer, Maria had a 25-year career at IBM, most recently as the tech giant’s CMO where she oversaw all marketing professionals and activities across North America, Canada and Latin America. She has held senior global marketing positions in a variety of disciplines and business units across IBM, most notably strategic initiatives in Smarter Cities and Watson Customer Engagement, as well as leading teams in services, business analytics, and mobile and industry solutions. She is known for her work with teams to leverage data, analytics and cloud technologies to build deeper engagements with customers and partners.
With a passion for marketing, business and people, and a recognized expert in data-driven marketing and brand engagement, Maria talks to Business Chief about her new role, her leadership style and what success means to her.
You've recently moved from IBM to Kyndryl, joining as CMO. Tell us about this exciting new role?
I’m Chief Marketing Officer for Kyndryl, the independent company that will be created following the separation from IBM of its Managed Infrastructure Services business, expected to occur by the end of 2021. My role is to plan, develop, and execute Kyndryl's marketing and advertising initiatives. This includes building a company culture and brand identity on which we base our marketing and advertising strategy.
We have an amazing opportunity ahead at Kyndryl to create a company brand that will stand apart in the market by leading with our people first. Once we are an independent company, each Kyndryl employee will advance the vital systems that power human progress. Our people are devoted, restless, empathetic, and anticipatory – key qualities needed as we build on existing customer relationships and cultivate new ones. Our people are at the heart of this business and I am deeply hopeful and excited for our future.
What experiences have helped prepare you for this new opportunity?
I’ve had a very rich and diverse career history at IBM that has lasted 25+ years. I started out in sales but landed explored opportunities at IBM in different roles, business units, geographies, and functions. Marketing and business are my passions and I landed on Marketing because it allowed me to utilize both my left and right brain, bringing together art and science. In college, I was no tonly a business major, but an art major. I love marketing because I can leverage my extensive knowledge of business, while also being able to think openly and creatively.
The opportunities I was given during my time at IBM and my natural curiosity have led me to the path I’m on now and there’s no better next career step than a once-in-a-lifetime-opportunity to help launch a company. The core of my role at Kyndryl is to create a culture centered on our people and growing up in my career at IBM has allowed me to see first-hand how to prioritize people and ensure they are at the heart of progress in everything Kyndryl will do.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I believe that people aren't your greatest assets, they are your only assets. My platform and background for leadership has always been grounded in authenticity to who I am and centered on diversity and inclusion. I immigrated to the US from Chile when I was 10 years old and so I know the power and beauty that comes from leaning into what makes you different from other people, and that's what I want every person in my marketing organization to feel – the value in bringing their most authentic self to work every day. The way our employees feel when they show up for themselves authentically is how they will also show up for our customers, and strong relationships drive growth.
I think this is especially true in light of a world forever changed by the pandemic. Living through such an unprecedented time has reinforced that we are all humans. We can't lead or care for one another without empathy and I think leaders everywhere have been reminded of this.
What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?
When I was growing up as an immigrant in North Carolina, I often wanted to be just like everyone else. But my mother always told me: Be unique, be memorable – you have an authentic view and experience of the world that no one else will ever have, so don't try to be anyone else but you.
What does success look like to you?
I think the concept of success is multi-faceted. From a career perspective, being in a job where you're respected and appreciated, and where you can see how your contributions are providing value by motivating your teams to be better – that's success! From a personal perspective, there is no greater accomplishment than investing in the next generation. I love mentoring younger professionals – they are the future. I want my legacy as a leader to include providing value in work culture, but also in leaving a personal impact on the lives of professionals who will carry the workforce forward. Finding a position in life with a job and company that offers me a chance at all of that is what success looks like to me.
What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?
I've always been a naturally curious person and it's easy for me to over-commit to projects that pique my interest. I've learned over years of practice how to manage that, so to my younger self I’d say… prioritize the things that are most important, and then become amazing at those things.