Speaking to an audience of more than 75 Borough of Manhattan Community College students and alumni, Debra Baker shared her career path that led to her current role as managing director and head of global risk solutions for BNY Mellon Asset Servicing. She emphasized the importance of building a network beyond close family and friends, seeking out mentors, and looking for and being open to taking on greater responsibilities. In addition, she also underscored how important it is to stay connected to our communities and giving back. As the current chairperson of the Board of Directors for the YWCA of the City of New York, Debra feels strongly about the role every individual can play.
“I can distinctly remember reaching out to a sponsor asking for advice on my next assignment. She was straight to the point and said, ‘It’s time for you to demonstrate you can take on stretch assignments, come out of your comfort zone and succeed.’ That advice encouraged me and led me to many more opportunities in my career by giving me the confidence to take on calculated risks and push the boundaries I had set for myself,” said Deb Baker.
The Breakfast Series, sponsored by The BMCC Foundation, invites high-profile business leaders to speak with BMCC students and alumni about their lives and careers. The series offers a unique opportunity for students to learn about past challenges and obstacles faced by today’s corporate leaders, pose questions and learn how they may overcome such challenges in their lives and continue on to create meaningful and successful paths for themselves.
Named one of the 2016 “Top 25 Black Women in Business” by the Network Journal, Debra has more than 25 years of experience in product and strategy, performance analytics, project planning and management.
In addition to her role at the YWCA, Debra is a former board member for The Women's Bond Club (WBC) in NYC. She has also been an active supporter of Black Achievers Institute (BAI). Debra was also a founding member and executive steering committee member for BNY Mellon’s Women's Initiatives Network (WIN) and is currently on the BNY Mellon Diversity & Inclusion Operating Committee.
Past Leadership Breakfast speakers have included BNY Mellon’s Lee Stephens, executive vice president leading the company’s strategic business development efforts with US public sector clients, in addition to representatives from American Express, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Time Warner.