Department Advisory Board

Gene Colabatistto
Group President, Defence & Security, CAE

Gene Colabatistto was appointed Group President of CAE’s Defence & Security Group in June 2012. The Defence & Security business represents approximately half of CAE’s total revenues. Mr. Colabatistto has more than 25 years experience in the global defence industry, and has held leadership positions in both the military and the private sector. Before joining CAE, he was a Senior Vice President in the Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) Group at Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) - a leading provider of scientific, engineering, systems integration and technical services. He was responsible for the growth of their ISR and Cybersecurity businesses.

Prior to joining SAIC, Mr. Colabatistto was President of Olive Group North America, a global, integrated security corporation. Before that Mr. Colabatistto was President of Space Imaging Solutions, the leading provider of satellite imagery products and services. He was also President of SPOT Image Corporation, the North American subsidiary of the world’s first commercial provider of satellite imagery. Previously, Mr. Colabatistto spent almost 10 years with Veridian Corporation, responsible for the growth of its engineering products, imagery, and signals intelligence business. Mr. Colabatistto also served in the United States Marine Corps and was responsible for intelligence information systems and acted as the service’s representative for satellite and airborne reconnaissance during Desert Storm.

Mr. Colabatistto has an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from George Washington University, and a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering and an M.S. in Systems Management from the University of Southern California (USC). He is a member of the Intelligence and National Security Alliance (INSA), Armed Forces Communications-Electronics Association (AFCEA), National Defense Intelligence Association (NDIA), United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation (USGIF), American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

Heather Cruz
Partner, Investment Management, Skadden

Heather Cruz

Heather Cruz represents investment advisers and investment banks in connection with the structuring and distribution of U.S. and international private investment products, including private equity funds, multi- and single-strategy hedge funds, real estate funds, infrastructure funds, credit and distressed debt funds, as well as fund of funds. She also advises clients on the establishment, operation and sale of investment adviser and broker-dealer businesses.

With respect to private investment funds, Ms. Cruz advises clients on a broad spectrum of legal issues and considerations relating to the establishment and operation of private investment funds marketed and operated on a global basis. She also represents institutional investors seeking to invest in private investment funds and in investment advisers.

In addition, Ms. Cruz has extensive experience providing regulatory advice to broker-dealers and investment advisers, including regarding compliance with various aspects of the Dodd-Frank Act, with a particular focus on the Volcker Rule. She also advises on a range of issues relating to U.S. Investment Advisers Act, the U.S. Investment Company Act, and the rules and regulations of FINRA.

Ms. Cruz has repeatedly been selected for inclusion in Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business and Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business. She also was named in Expert Guides – The World’s Leading Lawyers Chosen By Their Peers, The Best Lawyers in America and as a worldwide leading lawyer in Euromoney Institutional Investor’s 2015 Banking Finance and Transactional Expert Guide.

Daniel J. Epstein
Executive Chairman and Founder The ConAm Group

Dan Epstein is the Executive Chairman and Founder of the ConAm Group headquartered in San Diego.  ConAm is among the top privately owned apartment management/ownership firms in the country and presently operates a total of approximately 55,000 apartments throughout the United States.  In addition to its management activities, ConAm is developing apartments and mixed-use projects in Seattle and Portland.

Dan serves on the USC Board of Trustees and is a member of the Executive Board.  He is on the executive committee of the USC Lusk Center for Real Estate Development and also serves on the advisory committee of the USC Viterbi School’s Epstein Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering.  Recently Dan was awarded USC’s Asa V. Call Alumni Achievement Award.  In addition, Ernst & Young named him San Diego's Entrepreneur of the Year for the Real Estate Industry.  He graduated from USC in 1962 with a bachelor’s degree in Engineering.

Balasubramani Ganesh
President and CEO, MTSI Inc.

B GaneshBalasubramani Ganesh (known as Ganesh) is the Founder, President, and CEO of California-based Managing Technology Solutions International Inc. (MTSI, Inc). Founded in 1997, MTSI is an information technology and business consulting firm specializing in Oracle/ PLEX business applications (cloud and on premise) and Mobile solutions for Fortune 1000 clients.

Ganesh graduated from USC in 1985 with an M.S. in Industrial and System Engineering and started his carrier with Transamerica Delaval (Wiggins Connectors Division), an Aerospace and Defense component manufacturer. He was instrumental in developing and implementing Lean Manufacturing in his division, which was recognized by Raytheon as the as the Best Supplier out of 3000 candidates. More recently and in addition to leading MTSI, Ganesh has served as a strategic advisor and founding team member of several startups in the Aerospace and Defense and Medical Device industries. Ganesh is also part of the leadership team of the USC India Alumni group and active with the USC-India initiative.

In 1979, he received a B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering, NIT, India. He did post-graduate Technical Studies from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras, and Management Studies at HAL/BEML (India) Staff College (1980).

Alan Glazer
Head of Operational Excellence,  Amgen

Alan GlazerAlan Glazer is currently the Head of Operational Excellence for Amgen, a $23B biotechnology company.  He has over 25 years of  experience in manufacturing, quality, and operational excellence.  Alan has also worked for Armstrong, Baxter, Baxalta, and Shire.  He has a B.S in Industrial Engineering from the Pennsylvania State University and an MBA from Pepperdine University.  Alan lives in the Los Angeles area with his wife and four children.

Bill Jia
VP Infrastructure, Facebook

Bill Jia

Bill Jia is VP of Infrastructure at Facebook, overseeing AI/AML infrastructure, performance and capacity engineering, and hardware validation engineering. Since joining Facebook in 2009, he has been responsible for defining overall Facebook software product performance strategy, and optimizing and planning infrastructure for Facebook. Further, he is involved in defining Facebook’s hardware platform and strategy. In addition, he is focused on building the cutting-edge artificial intelligence and applied machine learning platform and infrastructure to analyze one of the largest data sets in the world and apply the AI/AML insights into products (Search, Ads, News Feed, Photos, Videos, etc.) to optimize user experience.

Prior to Facebook, Bill spent around 4 years at Microsoft and was in charge of improving and optimizing various Microsoft online services. He received dual BS degrees from Shanghai Jiao Tong University and received his MS degree from National University of Singapore. Bill obtained his PhD degree in operations research from the University of Southern California (USC) in 2007.

Zohreh Khademi
Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Devices New Product Introduction + Outsource Design & Operation Management

Zohreh Khademi is responsible for Microsoft Devices New Product Introduction + Outsource Design & Operation Management that span across the devices portfolio of Surface, Xbox, accessories and Innovation (Hub and Hololens). She leads a team of 200+ Technical leaders, Engineers and Program managers responsible for delivering products across hardware and software from concept to high volume production and through sustaining stage. Zohreh joined Microsoft in 1998 and in the past 20 years, she has held several Technical and leadership roles within Microsoft’s Manufacturing and Supply Chain and devices business groups. During this time, she has led every first generation of devices in Microsoft and brought them to high volume manufacturing and launch.

Prior to this role, Zohreh spent 10+ years in various Technical & Engineering roles in Manufacturing and Consumer products Industries with focus on Automation and Robotics, before taking time off to raise her family and pursue other personal passions.

Zohreh earned her Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees in Industrial and Systems Engineering from the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA. She also holds a Certificate in Microcomputer and Systems Networking from the University of Washington, Seattle, WA.

Bryan Byung-ik Min
Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Epsilon Systems Solutions, Inc.

Mr. Min is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Epsilon Systems Solutions, Inc. The employee-ownership philosophy and entrepreneurial spirit Mr. Min established at Epsilon Systems Solutions, Inc. has been the primary reason for the tremendous growth since its inception in 1998. Epsilon Systems employs “Epsiloneers” in more than 20 U.S. locations and has become one of the premier, government contracting firms.

Mr. Min has received various military, business and community leadership honors from organizations such as the United States Congress, the U.S. Navy and Ernst & Young. Qualified as a Naval Nuclear Engineering officer, he served on both active and reserve duty from 1986 to 1998 as an officer in the U.S. Submarine Force.

Mr. Min holds both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in engineering from the University of Southern California and Virginia Tech, respectively. He is a graduate of the Harvard Business School Owner/President Management (OPM) Program and earned a Master in Public Administration (MPA) degree at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.

Alex Ortiz
Head of Operational Consulting Departments, Kaiser Permanente

Alex Ortiz has 30 plus years of working experience in Health Care operational consulting.  He is head of Operational Consulting Departments at Kaiser Permanente. He is in charge of consult and advice management in projects related with process improvement, process re-engineering, change management, strategic planning and business development.

J.T. Sizemore
Principal, The Blackstone Group

JT SizemoreJ.T. Sizemore is a Principal of Blackstone Real Estate Debt Strategies. Mr. Sizemore is involved in sourcing, underwriting, negotiating and structuring debt investments across all asset types and geographies. Before joining Blackstone in 2014, Mr. Sizemore worked in real estate private equity acquisitions roles with Morgan Stanley Real Estate Investing in San Francisco and DLJ Real Estate Capital Partners in Los Angeles. Mr. Sizemore also worked as a developer with The Kor Group and as a strategy consultant with Bain & Company. Mr. Sizemore graduated summa cum laude with a BS in Industrial and Systems Engineering from the University of Southern California and received an MBA from Wharton, where he was a Palmer Scholar.

Chintan B. Shyani
SVP, Sales Operations and Analytics, Strategic Partners, Inc.

Chintan B. ShyaniMr. Shyani is the SVP of Sales Operations and Analytics at Strategic Partners, Inc, a privately held manufacturer and distributor of medical uniforms, footwear, diagnostic equipment and school uniforms.  Prior to the current role, Mr. Shyani held various management positions in forecasting, supply chain management and demand planning at Strategic Partners, Inc and Speedo USA.  He earned his Bachelor of Engineering degree in Chemical Engineering from Gujarat University in India and Master of Science degree in Operations Research Engineering from the University of Southern California, Viterbi School of Engineering, in 2000. He resides in Los Angeles area with his wife Keya and 2 children, Anya and Ayan.

Kazuo ‘Kaz’ Takeda
Manager of Industrial Engineering, Disneyland Resort

Kazuo ‘Kaz’ Takeda is a Manager of Industrial Engineering for the Disneyland® Resort. Since 1998, Kaz has been responsible for both strategic and tactical operational functions focused on creating, securing and maintaining a world class theme park operation. In his role, he is accountable for planning and improving the sustainment operations for two Theme Parks, three Hotels, and multiple retail and dining locations. His experience ranges from working with maintenance, security, textiles and horticulture, to serving on various support units which orchestrate media events and drive theme park performance.

Kaz began his career as a quality control engineer within the home satellite television industry.  He then joined Telescreen LTD as the US logistics manager for their international animation studio production group.  In 1988, Kaz joined United Parcel Service in their industrial engineer division, supporting multiple initiatives from the creation of Quality Incentive Bonus system to the opening of new buildings and air gateways.

Since joining the Disneyland® Resort, his work has continued on all aspects of Resort business and operations from being a core member of the Disney California Adventure grand opening press event team to implementation of process standards and creation of the Sound Technician, Electrician and Machinist Union craft apprenticeship/trainee program within the Resort’s maintenance division.

Kaz is an active member of the Institute of Industrial Systems Engineering National Leadership Committee as Assistant Region Vice President and Chapter Development Fund Committee Chair.  He also serves on the National Industry Advisory Board and has been elected into the rank of IISE Fellow. At the university level, Kaz serves on the USC, Cal Poly SLO and Cal Poly Pomona Industrial Engineering Advisory Committee’s and is a part time instructor at USC Daniel J. Epstein Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering. He received his Bachelor degree from California State University at Long Beach and his MBA at the University of Redlands.