Speaker Profile

Gina Tesla

VP, Corporate Citizenship


As one of the top members of the leadership team in IBM Corporate Citizenship and the IBM Foundation, Gina’s portfolio spans multi-million-dollar investments in three strategic areas: education & skills, health and community resiliency. She leads Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability across IBM, covering employee engagement, environment, human resources, public policy, supply chain, governance and research. Gina also leads IBM’s award-winning Corporate Service Corps and Smarter Cities Challenge initiatives.

Celebrating its 10th year, The Corporate Service Corps was established to provide a triple benefit for IBM: leadership development for employees, high quality problem solving for communities, and greater visibility for IBM. Nearly 4,000 IBMers from 61 countries have served in 40 countries, applying their problem solving expertise to build capacity and help transform organizations serving people around the world faced with challenging societal issues. Gina has brought her passion for women’s empowerment to the program and in 2017, 75% of teams included a project focused on either economic development, health, safety or education for women & girls.

Under Gina’s leadership, the program has been widely and consistently recognized by major media including The Wall Street Journal, The Financial Times, CNBC, The Washington Post, Forbes, Fortune and Fast Company. She has also guided the adoption of pro bono consulting by a number of Fortune 100 companies. Gina has also been instrumental in the integration of business & society education at over 50 leading business schools around the world, including the Yale School of Management and the Global Network for Advanced Management and via the Aspen Institute Business & Society Case Competition. An offshoot of Corporate Service Corps, the Smarter Cities Challenge program, now in its 8th year, has provided executive-level problem solving for cities around the world.

Gina is an innovator who developed tri-sector partnerships that include: designing the IBM and Peace Corps partnership in Ghana, the Philippines, Mexico and Peru; creating the Global FoodBanking Network partnership which includes $1.2M in contributions 5 countries across Latin America; and collaboration with The Nature Conservancy on environmental management in Brazil, Peru & Colombia.

In 2013, Gina was recognized as “Best of IBM,” one of only 500 employees among more than 400,000 IBMers worldwide, for her contributions to corporate citizenship. She also serves on the board of Atlas Corps Tech.

Gina has held roles at IBM in strategy & change consulting, marketing and business development. She holds an MBA from the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University. Before joining IBM, she served as a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer in Panama, working in Community Economic Development. She also had a successful career in advertising which included roles with Microsoft at McCann Erickson in San Francisco, and with IBM at Ogilvy & Mather in New York City.

Gina Tesla's Sessions